Where the Bruised Cucumber meets the Sippy Cup!

A Loud Mama with a loud family, living imperfect lives glorified through God and breaking free of the bondage of politically correct Religion. We do things differently around the Viking Homestead, and hope that, by sharing our lives, we can help others feel more comfortable with their differences as well.

06 February, 2012

What it means to me

"God is Love".  My Little Valkyrie tells me this ALL the time! :)  All the time.  Every day.  She likes to remind me especially often when I'm feeling cranky! :)  Cranky Pirate and I work especially hard to raise our children to know, love and serve the Lord.  Thankfully, when we were called to be parents, there was never any burden to be perfect.  To my knowledge, God doesn't expect perfection, thankfully!  I would fall short of that marker constantly!  As a parent, my main priority is to teach my children to serve and honor God.  Now, not everyone will have the same religious views or will subscribe to the same church doctrine(but thats a subject best left for another post at another time!), and even Cranky Pirate and I don't always agree on how to best handle the spiritual upbringing of Little Valkyrie and Little Viking!  It can be hard, especially when you've got two people who were raised on pretty opposite ends of the spectrum!  I was raised by a mother who attended what I considered to be a church that was only a few steps away from being a cult.  It was VERY intense in a very bad way.  I always suspected that if Jesus actually showed up to this church, he wouldn't be allowed in.  My father was the total opposite of that.  Not quite athiest, he acknowledged that there probably was something greater out there, but completely shunned the idea of church in any form.  Cranky Pirate on the other hand, was raised by older, very conservative parents who attended a Southern Baptist church and, of course, let that dictate many of the decisions they made.  Of course, this is all said as information, not to judge anyone.  Everyone did what they thought was best at the time or what they felt they could cope with.  However, it left us both searching and with more questions than answers.  I was NEVER one to accept the old 'because I said so' or 'this is how its always been done' answers for the most part.  I hated going to church leaders and asking questions about Christ or the Bible or anything else and being told one stock answer in response.  I firmly believe that there are as many interpretations of the Bible as their are people in the world.  When I sit down with my Bible to read and pray and sort out my life and my relationship with God and address any issues that are going on, He isn't going to give me an answer that applies to anyone else.  God is going to point me in the direction meant for me.  He will convict me to do the things that will put me on the path he has set aside for me to travel.  Before I was even born, God knew every decision I would ever make in my life, every mistake I would make, every tear I would shed, every massive screw up, every triumph, every wonderfully imperfect bit of it!  He still decided that I was worth dying for and that I was worth existing in this world.  He felt that about each and every single person walking around out there.  You are so amazing, even with everything that is so human, so naturally imperfect about you, that He died for you.  That He deemed you worthy.  I'm most certainly NOT worthy, or at least I don't always feel that way, but God is love.  He loved me enough....like a father, I'm good enough because I'm His! In searching out our relationships with Christ, Cranky Pirate and I don't always feel the same things or agree on all the semantics....because our relationships with Christ are individual.  If you have more than one child, you will have a different relationship with those children, even though you love them all the same.  Therefore, I may not be convicted or called or led or understand or feel things the same way as any other person, because that is not where God wants me to be.  He has a plan for all of us and, as hard as it may be to have the patience and peace that His will will be done in His time and in His way, I try.  I pray for grace daily, for forgiveness, and for the ability to be patient.  I try very hard not to ask God for 'things' or for Him to get to the point already.  I figure He's God, so He knows whats going on.   There have been many times that I prayed for something and finally realized that, whatever it is that I had prayed for(a thing, a change of scenery, etc.) would've actually been horrible if it had come through! :)  That, to be where God wants me to be and to be the person He wants me to be, He has to test me, to break me.  That He will change my heart, soften and break me, so that I can serve His purpose in His place and His time.  Cranky Pirate and I don't always agree on things, but the one thing we DO agree on is that our children do need to love, serve and obey God.  We can only lead so much and after a certain point we feel that they have to begin pursuing their relationship with Christ on their own.  This past summer, my daughter went to one of several VBS programs.  She LOVES attending church and she looks forward to filling up her summer with as many VBS programs as she can.  This summer we tried out a new one and are so VERY happy that we did.  At this program they discussed baptism quite in depth.  How, accepting Jesus into your heart was the way to eternal life and to be a brother or sister in Christ was to become a part of something larger and wonderful.  They sent home lists of questions and answers to make sure that anyone interested in baptism could be fully educated and understanding of just exactly what it is they were doing.  My Little Valkyrie came home after the very first day, and BEGGED to be baptized.  For me, it was awkward because I'd had both of my children baptized as infants.  Through my various religious exposures over the years, I felt that my children needed to be baptized as infants and then could decide for themselves when they were older if they were going to be confirmed or whatever was appropriate.  For my husband, it was different because, growing up in a Southern Baptist household, they believe in 'being saved'.   Now, I'm no religious scholar.  I don't know much about most religions.  I can name off several, but don't know the ins and outs.  However, for me, it was a case of believing in original sin and needing to have my children baptized as infants.  Therefore, they were.  Cranky Pirate, however, believed that children didn't need to be baptized properly until they reached the age of reason and could choose it for themselves.  However, ultimately we came to the decision that if Little Valkyrie was choosing this for the right reasons, to publicly acknowledge that she was making the choice to welcome God to 'live inside her'(as she put it), to be a part of God's family, to show that God is love and loves her so much that he would accept her knowing that she isn't perfect(I've got a pretty deep kid, y'all!) and to start accepting responsibility for her relationship with God(even though its baby steps) then neither of us felt we had a reason to tell her no.  It would be like telling a kid they couldn't buy apples at the store.  Apples are good for them.  I wouldn't say they couldn't have apples but then buy frozen pizza.  Doesn't work that way.  Little Valkyrie loves God and I couldn't very well tell her, after the very deep discussion we had about what she was undertaking, that she couldn't go through with being baptized.  So she was.  On a warm summer evening, in front of her little brother, her little sister(whom I was still not telling people about) and myself, my oldest proudly proclaimed that she accepted Jesus into her heart and was baptized in water.  Funny enough, at that moment, my feelings about it didn't matter.  None of the discussions or worries came into play.  That she had a heart big enough for God and only wanted for His love to shine through her was everything I needed to know.

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