Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Labors of Love

Next year I will be a Junior in high school, and I have begun to think about college, where I want to go, what I want to do, and if I even am going to go to college. There are a lot of decisions ahead of me, and I have been thinking and praying over them a lot.

However, the subject of college and graduating is not what has been first and foremost on my mind. Strangely enough, I have been thinking a lot about motherhood.

As my family celebrated Mother’s Day this last Sunday, I watched my mom and realized how much she does for her family. In truth, mothers should be celebrated every day, not only once a year! My mom is so amazing and wonderful, and I hope that one day I can be a mother just like her.

As I watched her converse and play with my siblings, I began thinking about the days ahead when I would be a mother to my own children.

Honestly, I cannot wait.

In a world where motherhood is sometimes dreaded and considered a burden, I look forward to staying home with my children, homeschooling them, and teaching them about the everlasting love of Jesus. I love children of all ages, and I simply cannot stop thinking with excitement about my future.

Several weeks ago, we had some dear friends come up who have two young girls (“E”, age 4, and “S”, age 2). The youngest latched on to me immediately, and I was able to carry her around, playing with her all day long. She was so sweet, and when I asked her what her favorite part of the day was, she looked up at me with her big green/brown eyes and said, “My favorite part was makin’ cookies wif you, Miss Mowwy!” It melted my heart, and made me wonder if one day my own child would say that to me. That night, S couldn’t go to sleep, so I took her in my arms and began singing hymns softly in her ear, stroking her hair, and whispering words of comfort until she finally drifted off to sleep. That was such a tender experience, that it made me think about the many nights where I will sing my own children to sleep with words from soft, happy hymns that my mom always sang to me when I was scared.

Last week, my mom was very sick, and had to stay in bed. My dad was at work, so I was helping my siblings with school and making dinner. At first, I dreaded it, but then realized that my mom does it every day without complaining while juggling whatever other problems we currently had. Cooking, cleaning, and teaching are all labors of love that my mom so sweetly goes about doing every day without a single word of protest or selfishness. So, as I made quiche and muffins, I remembered that every step of mothering is a labor of love.

Even the most unpleasant things, like changing diapers, working through sickness, and cooking when tired are small sacrifices that are made all in the name of motherhood. Somehow, my mom has taught me to look forward to every chore, without complaining, and they become enjoyable. Motherhood is something I look forward to every day, whether it is doing the dishes or rocking a fussy baby to sleep.

One day, my dreams will come true, and I look forward to that day already, even though I am only sixteen.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

True to the Faith

(The following is an essay I wrote long ago on how to treat immorality.)

Hollywood, California has become a place full of evil and immorality. The media has also become infected with this terrible secular culture, and most movies and television shows are no longer appropriate for any age. And yet even the Christians still watch these types of movies, filled with sex, drugs, violence, and sin. Many actors and actresses in the media live lifestyles that go completely against the Bible and Christianity, but most Christians do not think about these things. Christians have become comfortable with watching, breathing, and living sin, and no longer reject the evil that permeates these films and ideas. Should Christians support such media? Is it right to watch and enjoy movies with actors and actresses that live their lives completely against what God has said and commanded in the Bible?

Whether it is buying and watching movies or going to the movie theater, Christians must think about their choices. Instead of going to the store and picking out a movie that looks good, they must research it first and find out about the actors and actresses in it, deciding for themselves whether or not the movie is completely free from evil. 2 Timothy 2:22 says, “Flee the evil desires of youth, and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.” God wants us to stay separate from all forms of evil, whether they seem harmless or not.

Christians can be easily dragged into the evils of the media without ever thinking of the sin that is so rampant in it. Satan has molded the media to fit his standards rather than God’s, and has made it look harmless and entertaining in the meantime. This kind of deception is perhaps the most dangerous, because it is the hardest to detect. Christians must always be on their guard for such sin, making sure that they are not ensnared by evil.

Although there are many actors and actresses that live moral and upright lives, the majority has fallen into sin and live immoral, financially ruined lives. Lindsay Lohan, a young actress is an example of this sort of ruin. Starting out as a beautiful child actress and model, her career took off, but soon crashed when she was only eighteen. Lohan was arrested for several DUI’s, cocaine incidents, and car accidents, and yet every time she was released she went back to her old lifestyle. To this day, she is still ruining her life, never breaking out of the cycle of sin that she is trapped inside. On the other hand, she is a wonderful actress and beautiful girl. It is easy for Christians to see the good side of her and ignore the bad, but she is truly a messed up young woman.

Should Christians support people like Lohan? The answer is no, they should avoid all evil. Yet they should not cut sinful people off completely, for these people may never find Christ’s love if they are never told of it. Simply, Christians should show them love and compassion, but not support their choices and lifestyles. Instead, they can show them the love of God, and they may one day be brought to the everlasting love of Jesus and the Father.

It is difficult for Christians to make this kind of decision, because the media is so entertaining and enjoyable. To cut off this kind of connection is hard and a sacrifice, but at the same time they are following God’s will. Mark 14:38 says, “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the body is weak." This verse says that Christians must pray that they will be able to flee the evil that is so prominent and always follow what God desires.