Who Would We Be If We Were A People Of Grace?

For Red Tent Living this month...

If we agree on one thing, perhaps it is that we’re all human?

Since nothing else approaches unifying these days. Perhaps there is that?

A fearful mama writes a post that goes viral. Protecting 3 small children in Ikea, she fears a stalker and tells her Facebook community she is a target of human trafficking. The machine explodes, one side spreads her sincere warning while the other side blasts her misinformed reactionary response.

Mistakenly, she assumed her community was safe.

The same media blamed for not addressing the issue is now blamed for sensationalizing it, fueling stereotypes, spreading inaccuracies. If we didn’t have thoseshows we wouldn’t have these mamas: hysterical and wrong.

The #Ikeamom is not unlike #alllivesmatter and #weareallimmigrants. Well-meaning folks, learning about injustice, trying to synthesize newfound knowledge with lived-experience. Trying to be compassionate. Trying to engage. Trying to support. Doing what they know to do with the understanding they have.

But the machine is ruthless. And there is no space for wrestling truth, stumbling around justice, and just stepping on toes.

What if we all decided it was okay to step on our toes?

Keep reading over at Red Tent Living.

Exploring Shame and Grace for Men who Buy Sex

I am honored to be a new regular contributor for Red Tent Living, a space for reframing femininity alongside some pretty amazing women. I'll be offering thoughts and perspective on sex trafficking, such as this article. I do hope you'll finish reading over at the site. *****

Nine mug shots appeared in our local paper’s headline story this week. Nine men ranging in age and ethnicity, economic status and background. Despite their differences, they share both the cause and effect of their public exposure: shame.

Shame descended upon them the moment the paper hit the press. Employers and wives and neighbors judged and banished.

Shame had already met them in the station, at their booking, when the flash snapped, immortalizing their actions. Fingerprints and charges enlisted them as law breakers.

Shame was present at their side earlier, when they scrolled the ads, chose flesh and sacrificed money and time to possess it. Loneliness and selfishness and whatever else commercializes sex consumed them.

But shame’s origin in their lives was long long before. Shame’s birthplace is rarely in a newspaper.

Continue reading here.

Red Ten Living Shame

When Suicide Comes Close @Today's Christian Woman

Suicide For my lovely readers, I wanted to direct you to my article on Today's Christian Woman, How To Talk To Your Kids About Suicide.

When our family hosted a young girl who struggled with suicidal thoughts, our kids came face to face with the 3rd leading cause of adolescent death. Later, when a classmate took his life, we knew we had to do better to prepare our kids to handle this new reality. Hopefully, our game plan encourages you to make a similar one in your homes. Read about it here.