As Christian as I want to be.

Copy of Copy of Copy of Why I'm No longer (1)

I talk here about Ghandi and why he didn’t choose Christ.

I talk here about why I’m no longer Catholic.

And right now, right here, I want to talk about how people have ruined Jesus.

TGIF, you guys!!

But seriously, a little backstory: We’re going to a new church and the pastor has an uncanny way of having a brain in his head. I love that. Someone who can speak Jesus but also knows what an Oxford comma is.

Hint: it’s not a type of pie.

And so we’re talking after the service because he’s just smacked me in the face with the concept that maybe the point of the Christian church is to help others understand that God is already within them and maybe not to keep church planting in the name of prosperity.

Because when you think about it, there’s a fine line between followers of Christ and followers of YOU.

And dude, he’s just so self-deprecating and humble when he says these things whereas I’d be adding “you fracking losers!” after every statement.

And this is why I need Jesus.

Look: there is a need for community and extending yourself to others. But sometimes I think we miss the pony (auto-correct changed “point” to “pony” and you know I won’t argue with that logic) and instead of looking at the Christian church as a means to an end (the end being a pivotal heart change of everyone on this little planet and an acceptance of Him), we look at it like a really cool club with a jumbo screen, free air conditioning, and a Hillsong cover band.

The point/pony is not a cool, comfortable Sunday experience we’re going to Instagram all over the  pizazzle. The point is talking to that guy you don’t like and smells a little and who sometimes steals your hot pocket from the freezer in the break room.

The point is building meaningful relationships with others so they can see the patience and humility you offer them, even when the day is holding steady at “WTF” on the craptastic meter.

I’m not saying churches aren’t needed or that growing as a church is necessarily a negative thing.

I am saying that your reasons need to reflect HIM and not YOU.

A few others thing I’d like to randomly throw in here because rules are my proverbial jock itch. Ew:

  • Just because someone claims to be a Christian doesn’t mean they necessarily are. And if they are an incredibly evil person who treats you horribly and have never even watched the Simpsons, don’t let that change your opinion of Jesus. People have a knack for ruining things. Just ask the writers of The Office. #withoutMichaelScottthereisnooffice
  • Saying that you don’t like Christians because one was pretty sucky to you is like saying you don’t like doctors because the one you went to wasn’t actually a doctor but a guy who sells half-priced candy behind the movie theater
  • I’m really mad about The Office thing.

People aren’t perfect. But Christ is. Your relationship with Christ won’t be perfect. But Christ is. Every day is going to be some shade of craptastic on the one hand, but on the other hand there is a forgiveness there that sprouted before you and I were even born and keeps winding it’s mercy around us.

And that, my friends, is the ultimate pony.

A low-cal social media diet.

social media image
Every once in a while I take my life’s pulse.

Simply put, I scan for areas of improvement and start working on the better version of me.

(Blame Oprah.)

I’ve recently found one such area that I’m tweaking (twerking? hahaha…no), and I’m already feeling oodles better: my social media life.

My teeth are rotting. Help.

I hate Facebook and Instagram. There, I said it. And I know, I know, you’re all like, “But Ericka, you’re a social media maven with slightly decent hair and a Romanesque nose that just won’t quit.” And yeah, maybe the old me was. But now?

I’m tired. I just want to live. I want to stop comparing my life to others’. I want to stop inwardly seething at blatant political posts and getting all frazzled, not because somebody I know has a particular political mindset, but because they’d much rather exercise their right to incessantly chatter into an online void instead of realizing how it might make others feel. I’m also tired of taking photos of my sandwiches.

This me, me, me generation is starting to rot my teeth, you guys. And frankly, my soul.

And I don’t want to add to it.

Let’s start a different conversation.

When it boils down to it, I think blogging gives me the freedom to fully express what’s dancing between the sheets of my brain. Instagram and Facebook are just tiny nuggets of truth, and half the time, they’re not even that truthful.

Do you know how many times it takes me to snap a selfie? 72. And that doesn’t even include choosing a filter.

Here’s my truth: my skin isn’t always clear, sometimes I’m a little hungover, I snap at my kid, I snap at my husband, I love them more than my heart can take, I fail God like I’m Judas Iscariot’s twin sister Jane, and I don’t always shave my legs.

But I’m still loved and accepted and don’t need to worry about mindless swiping, mindless likes to make me whole.

Know thyself.

If you’re eyeing my home page right now, you’ll see links to LinkedIn, Twitter, and Pinterest. For me, these don’t count. I’m never on them and if I do happen to take a stroll down Pinterest lane, I’m probably looking up 5 million ways aloe is going to turn me into Jennifer Lopez (I’ll keep you posted).

You gotta know what’s working and what’s hacking at your inner peace with a chainsaw.

And for me? Those channels barely tickle.

Challenge time.

So if you want to chat with me, human being to human being, I invite you to check out this page and send me your inner thoughts. I’d like to get to know you while having absolutely no clue what your lunch looks like.

(Oprah would be proud.)

Oh and one more thing. Which social media channel do you need to give the ax to?

Evolution

IMG_3822

Here’s your
March
Of time
And Evolutionary
Progression
But burning
Your offspring
And tasting
The sharp note
Of blood
When nobody
Loves you
Is like a sweet
Reminder
That your
Death
Is the only
Real truth
You know. 

– e.c.

Dear Ava,

running away letter

DEAR AVA,

I hope
This
Finds
You well and
The kids
And Jack
Are safe
And happy
And set
To swimming
In the beautifully
Blue pool.
The picture
Was lovely.
It looks
Like a long
Shard of glass
And that bird
Reflected,
Hovering up high
Reminded me of the one
That swooped
And ate your
Newborn butterflies
That hatched
From that kit
I bought you.
I should have
Paid more attention
But butterflies
Are a nasty thing
To own.
How’s the cat
And that gerbil
That I’m always
Afraid the cat
Will eat?
Is Lucille
Still eating
Her fingernails
Like you always used
To do and might still?
Funny, the dedication
taken
To shredding
And imbibing ourselves.
I’m well.
The postman
Asked the other
Day
About your father
And I said, “Still Dead,”
But no smile on his face.
What a waste because
He looks a little
Like
Dicaprio in Gatsby
And a smile
Would do him good.
Me, too, I guess.
But not to get down
And out.
Have to keep the spirits
Up.
Have to keep on keeping on.

Sometimes, I talk to God
And dare him to listen.

I have to get on
Now
And I know
You’re busy with the
Glass shard pool
And Jack and the kids
And all the minutes
That feel
Like hours
Until your glass has
Spilled
And all you see
Is your damp
Eye hovering
From
above.

Thankful

  

Gram

  

Three

  
Today, I’m celebrating an anniversary of sorts. Three months since I’ve given my life to Christ and have stopped suffering from a multitude of issues.

Let me set the scene: in November, I was having one of my usual evenings, struggling with paralyzingly night terrors and hoping I wouldn’t wake up again wanting to kill myself (you know, typical girl stuff) when I told God, “I leave it up to you. You guide me and show me the way out of this.” Something weird happened the next night: I slept. Soundly.

I know something amazing happened and I know it’s because for the first time in my life, I prayed for God’s will. Not my own.

I used to like to believe that I was a badass who was in control of her life but I’m pretty sure my depression and crippling anxiety kind of gave away the fact that control was never apart of the equation. I don’t think in terms of control now but in terms of love, and man, this kind of life is so freeing.

Granted, it’s not always easy. People are way more comfortable when I talk nonsense like stalking Dave Coulier and keying people’s cars because the truth is a scary thing, especially if it’s new for you. But don’t be afraid of it. Don’t be afraid to embrace it and speak it. Because people might think you’ve suddenly fallen off your rocker. But little do they know, you’ve always been free falling in the first place.

And now there’s solid ground beneath my feet and my gaze is towards the sun.

Baptism

Whores