Ordinary Days

This past week our close nit community of North Florida was rocked to its core by the senseless death of two young men. Out to lunch while on duty, just a regular day on the job. For most people a regular day on the job is never life threatening. When they go anywhere, most people don’t worry about where they sit in the restaurant or how many people are there or think about the exits. For those who wear a uniform though a regular day on the job is always life threatening. The minute they made the decision in life to put on that uniform and accept that badge is the minute the definition of a regular day changed.

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Following the news and Sheriff Bobby Schultz unparalleled press released, everyone’s heart across this area was broken. On Friday most of us wore blue to honor the fallen and show love and support for the loved ones left behind. Most of us have probably sat around trying to figure out what on Earth went wrong and how could this happen in Little Ol’ Trenton?

Governor Matt Bevin has a video going around and I watched it recently. There is actually more than one. Of course he is being questioned about gun control. He corrects the other people in the discussion though and explains to them that it has nothing to do with guns. People have had guns since guns were invented. Twenty years ago people had guns in their vehicles at school and on them at school. It was no big deal. The problem is that the value of life no longer exist. We as a society do not value life. He went on to name some examples such as abortion, school shootings just because someone got turned down for prom, gang violence, video game violence along with music that has violent lyrics. 100 years ago people would have chopped off their arms to save a child’s life or to heal a loved one, they would have given anything to have the resources we have today. Our society as a whole has taken for granted the life, health, healing, vitality, freedom and in general all the wonderful things the last century has brought us.

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I’ve been watching Dr. Quinn recently along with some of the older western stuff, just something to listen to while folding clothes. Those small towns use to have to send off to big cities for a U. S. Marshall or a Judge anytime they had criminal problems. Or they had to advertise for a sheriff and hope someone with integrity and courage stepped up that wouldn’t turn into the town drunk or a tyrant. This is another thing we take for granted. In a matter of minutes I can have a deputy sheriff at my door steps if I need one. I don’t have to wait six months for one. So why has our society gone from begging for law enforcement, to killing them out right for no reason, just because.

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The next afternoon Jesse Clay was scrolling through his Facebook. He’s always showing me recipes or funny memes. So half the time when we are on the couch, or settling down for the night, I can’t look at my phone cause I’m looking at his. So while he is scrolling along, he pasted Taylor Lindsey’s girlfriend’s post. She had written a post for the most part I think just grieving and remembering, wanting to share some of who he was. I couldn’t read it, I got past the second or third line and turned away. I found something else to do. I could not sit there and read a letter/post I pray I will never have to write.

No he doesn’t where green, but he does wear a uniform. He does wear a badge. Bad guys with guns see a badge and a thin blue line. They see someone between them and their goal. I may be half a sleep when he leaves at 5:15 in the morning but I pray every time he walks out that door. I know that he may never come back. Anyone one who has a loved one, whether husband, wife, son, daughter, sister, brother, you know what I am talking about. You get a call that a riot is going down, or that an inmate has escape, or a chopper has been called or the ambulance is on the way to the prison or the Sheriff’s department, your heart drops out of your chest so fast you can’t breath. You feel like Dumbo’s mom just dropped kicked you into the next dimension. The asthma attack you are having isn’t over until you can talk to them. Then you can breath again. For a little while anyway.

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For all those out there who want to, as Sheriff Schultz puts it “demonize” law enforcement, take a good look around. Just because they are wearing normal clothes doesn’t mean anything. The minute they are in a crowd, they are what I call “switched on”. This means that they are very aware of their surroundings and everything going on. They don’t rest or relax. They have people to protect. The families of these willing to serve pay a high price as well. You try finding a vacation spot with not a lot of people, that still has a lot of fun stuff to do.

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There are those who have taken advantage of the badge, dragging it through the mud. There are 1,000 times more honorable men and women out there laying it down just so you can sleep a little better at night. Remember they are human, they have bad days, they have families that don’t always cooperate and sometimes wash red sweaters with their uniforms or put salt in the tea instead of sugar. This could potential make for a bad attitude for the day. That being said, take it into consideration the next time you see some one in a badge, they may not be serving their country the same way as those in our military, but they are serving us, right here at home, day in, day out, over worked, under paid, dealing with the loonies nobody else is willing to.

When all is said and done, after putting up with everything they do during the day, the nasty, the druggy, dirty, awfulness of it all, they come home to us. If we are lucky they make it home before supper time, if we aren’t lucky and they had to work overtime then at least they made it home.

My thoughts and prayers go out to the families of our fallen! My heart breaks for the sorrow you are feeling. The words I have can never heal your hearts. May you find the peace that surpasses all understanding, and may God’s Grace abound in your life!

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Selfie

If I were to write a book it would be a book about me. I’m a selfish person. Most people are. I like to talk about myself and my issues and how I deal with them, whether good or bad. I talk a lot too. Selfishness comes naturally to most. Today it comes much easier. It’s in our every day language, and we haven’t even batted our eye’s at it. Just rolled with it
Like we do most things, why cause we’re selfish

Rolled all up in what we have going on not worried about the world around us or how it’s changing or what’s effecting it’s change. Nope if it’s not within arms length, on our current apps or going to pay us with in the next two weeks we don’t care about it!

I say we, I mean me. I’m talking to me, but if this sounds like you then by all means read on.

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Even something like this, a blog. This gives everyone who thinks their opinion matters a chance to put that opinion out there. When back 100 years ago, if you didn’t work at a newspaper or weren’t in politics your opinion didn’t matter. To be honest if you weren’t of the right sexual orientation, race, or wealth status you didn’t exist except to bow down to the mighty. Now because of the keyboard, which can be accessed anywhere and comes in all different sizes, everyone thinks their opinion is “the opinion” and should be heard.

Now don’t get me wrong some people do have brains and can make a difference, and with enough hard work and effort put forth, if they get their idea to enough people who agree with them, then off they go. What’s sad, is this butt hurt society of whiny, lazy, sorry people, who don’t even try. They think, because they have an opinion, it should matter. Because they open their mouth, or type a few words, they have the solution, and should be heard.

The question is why should the rest of the world listen to anything you have to say. Why should a world of people who are wrapped up in themselves and their looks, their material things, their belongings, their status quo, their community standing, why should they give two dimes about what you or I have to say about anything. What makes what you say worth hearing.

Those are the questions that need to be answered before you start whining about no one listening to you. Have you proven yourself a person of character who cares about what everyone else has to say as well or are you only speaking to hear yourself talk.

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See we strike a nerve there. Most of your “keyboard warriors” will never be anything more than trolls. Scrolling through every posted issue on social media and news platform available leaving their scrawl dribble behind, thinking they have done their deeds for the day, they have contributed to society.

This is like tithing $2 a week when you make $40,000 a year. Yeah you really did your part, kinda like pissing on a forest fire. Sure you helped out, but was it the right thing, and could you have done more.

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Y’all probably think, “does she have a point to this?” I do.

Everything we do even as Christians, and I’m calling myself out, cause I’m just as bad and I need to step up, and get it together, revolves around ourselves. I titled this post “Selfie”, because this is who we have become. We are so far gone, we are drowning and we can’t see past our cuteness enough to know we are killing ourselves. Y’all are probably thinking “oh its not that bad!” Really,? Tell that the the recently dead under the age of 40, 30, 20, 15, 13, 10, 7. How many of them have died because we mattered more to ourselves as a society.

I’m not here for me. This thing called life, it ain’t about me. Something I’m trying to teach my boys, it ain’t all about them. We are here for others. Our selfishness gets in the way of so much that we could be doing together.

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Money isn’t the root of all evil. The love of money is, that is selfishness. We want that money so we can get the things we want, for us, to make our lives better. To what end, I ask You? Why?

Your answer will be, so we can have a nice house and a nice place to live and a roof over our heads and a nice car, nice clothes, and of course we need all this stuff in our house to make the day go round. Yeah so we can look good. That’s selfishness!

But I ask again, to what purpose? Who in a hundred years is going to still be taking care of any of this junk? Jesus could come back tomorrow and it would all be for naught. Most of the things in your houses will be rusted, dry rotted or garbage by then.

We fill our selfish lives with all this junk thinking it is going to make us happy. We keep piling it up. Birthday parties you get more junk, Christmas means more presents, weddings, house warnings, and this list goes on, and the crap/junk/stuff you think you have to have piles up. Give me, give me, give me!

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You’ve gained the whole world, and lost yourself, amongst a pile of nothing, all because you have placed value on something that was never there. When in this world did we start putting so much value on material things? Following that when did we lower the value of our fellow man? When did we start thinking so highly of ourselves? How does a world in this galaxy come to find itself full of overbearing, self conceited, dumb people?

We think so highly of ourselves, but if you watch one of those YouTube videos where the guy goes around asking people what Memorial Day is about vs Veteran’s Day vs Labor Day, well their answers will confirm my observations above. We think way to highly of ourselves.

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The selfie, began when a painter practiced painting himself. During the 1800s when cameras were being improved a few selfies were taken. In 2013, the word selfie had become common language and was added to the dictionary later that year. On average there are around 1 million selfies taken and posted. This doesn’t include your really narcissistic posters who will post 4-6 pictures of themselves on one post. A little history and statistics for you.

God made us in his image, and we are beautiful! “I praise you, because I am fearfully and wonderfully made. Wonderful are your works, my soul know it well.” Psalms 139:14 Seeking to glorify ourselves here we find our reward. If that is all you seek then you have gained the world, but have lost a greater prize.

It’s okay to take selfies. It’s not okay to let the love of yourself or any other idol get in the way of your relationship, faith and purpose here.

Don’t know what that is, ask? He always answers!

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I’m not here for me. The love I have in my heart for the people of this world is not my own. I could not love these people by myself, nor ask anyone else to. I know I’m not worth of the redemption I have received and yet grace abounds in me. My joy, peace and hope come from a love that is born from a sacrifice of the greatest mercy we will ever know, or have a chance to accept!
And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. Philippians 4:7-9

Selfishness does not have to be a way of life. There is a right way to live, a right way to think and a right way to treat others. Its starts with your heart, your home and with your family.

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