Bullying

I read an article today that was really good.  Follow this link to read it yourself.

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We have experienced much adult to adult bullying in the last 5 years.  This speaks more about adult to child bullying.  But I think that the issue is even greater adult-adult.

 

When we called someone on it (people in public education) we were told NO, they weren’t being bullies, a bully is someone that continues the  action repeatedly.  Which, honestly, they were.  Whether they wanted to admit it or not.

 

I love this portion of the article.

 

“Bowling over people… becomes an awfully effective way at getting what they want. And adult bullies may genuinely not realize they’re pretentious jerks, although I think more likely they don’t care. They have such an inflated sense of their own self-worth that they keep at it……

If more of us just spoke up, bullies would lose their shock and awe power.”

 

That is what was happening to us in dealing with the school.  They felt that only they knew what was right and that we were incapable.  It wasn’t until we/I took a stand and basically told them what to do that they seemed to back off.  It wasn’t until I brought it to their attention that they were dismissing the only people that actually understood the issue completely (us) instead of listening to our years of experience and utilizing it.    It wasn’t until I clearly told them what people with more knowledge and experience and training told us was right that they seemed to begin to understand that they could possibly be wrong.  Will they ever admit that to us? NO.   Will we ever receive an apology or any other communication about this issue?  Not likely.  In fact it has been over 3 months and we have not heard one word from them since that last meeting where it became abundantly clear that it was not a universal problem but a single teacher problem and that we were actually right all along.  Isn’t that the way with bullies?  Until you stand up to them fully and tell them to back off, they continue with their behavior?

 

Now… what if we move this thought process to the church and our church related issues??

 

It applies there too.  Those in “authority” felt that they could just bowl over us and keep to their agenda (which no one really knows what it is/was).  And they did.  They are pretentious jerks.  They do not care.  They do have an inflated sense of self-worth.  They have everyone (800+ other pastors) convinced that their way is the only way.  They have people too terrified to take a stand against them because they will be removed from their jobs.      If more of us took a stand against the arrogance of those in “power” – power which, by the way, we gave them – and encouraged them to act in a more civilized and gracious and CHRISTIAN way…. the church wouldn’t be hurting so much.  Those in the employ of the church wouldn’t be hurting so much.  Those in the employ of the church would be able to do actual ministry, the way they and their congregations wanted without fear of retribution.  If those in “power” actually served as Jesus commanded as SERVANTS… remember the last shall be first part of scripture?  How about the golden rule?  Do unto others?  What about love your neighbor as yourself?  What about being a humble servant?  What about grace and mercy and love and reconcilliation?    Sadly, those are lacking in some (most?  all?) organized religions today?

 

What if, those in the church acted like they were part of a church?  Like they were actually followers of a loving, forgiving, man – Jesus?  What if, they extended grace first instead of accusations?  What if they actually tried to reconcile with those in dispute?  What if they actually practiced Matthew 18.  ALL of Matthew 18, not just the parts they want.

 

Like

4“whoever humbles himself like this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven.”

 

or

 

15 “If your brother sins against you, go and show him his fault, just between the two of you. If he listens to you, you have won your brother over.
16 But if he will not listen, take one or two others along, so that ‘every matter may be established by the testimony of two or three witnesses.’
17 If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church; and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a tax collector.”
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I guess that those in “authority” would say they did this.  But… they were so unwilling to listen to reason and to credible witnesses that they basically jumped right to the “treat him as you would a pagan” part of that scripture.
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and what about:
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33 “Shouldn’t you have had mercy on your fellow servant just as I had on you?’
34 In anger his master turned him over to the jailers to be tortured, until he should pay back all he owed.
35 “This is how my heavenly Father will treat each of you unless you forgive your brother from your heart.”
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Do they not remember how they have been forgiven?  How they are not perfect?  How they have debts that need paid and that Jesus paid them? I suppose, those in “authority” would say they have forgiven but that there must be punishment for the error.  
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When the bullying continues after the punishment has been enacted.  When the bullying now extends to others and impacts other families just from association and for NO reason.  That is going too far.
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EAST OHIO CONFERENCE OF THE UNITED METHODIST CHURCH – you need to stop being a bully.  You need to treat your pastors and families with respect and encouragement and love and stop the bullying.  Without their hard work and devotion, you would not exist.   It is bad enough to bully one family to the point of near extinction.  It becomes exponentially worse when you  transfer your superciliousness for that family onto another family and start bullying them.    (look that big word up!)
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I know that my silly words on a silly blog will not make a difference.  In fact, it is highly likely that they will print this page and put it in the “file” and use it as evidence against us.
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I do want to make it clear, however.  MY United Methodist Church – MINE, yes MINE – would not behave this way.  The church that my grandfather, grandmother, great-grandparents, uncle, and father loved with their whole hearts.  The church that I grew up in and served faithfully as a lay person for decades is not the same church that is now in existence.  Have I turned my back on the UMC?  No.  It is my church.  I have hopes that the day will come when it will be filled with love again.  When pastors and families and lay people and their families will all be loved for their gifts and graces again.  When we remember that we need everyone – EVERYONE – to make up the body of Christ.  Not just those that fit some random mold we have generated in our minds.
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Maybe that will only happen when we are all in heaven… one can hope and dream though, right?

 

Wants vs. Needs

need is something you have  to have, something you can’t do without.

want is something you would like to have.  It is not absolutely necessary, but it would be a good thing to have.

Remember learning about the difference in elementary school?

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Wants:  food, clothing, shelter, water

Needs:  toys, ice cream (yes it is food, but not critical to survival), video games, etc.

 

What about those grey areas …  transportation?  Internet? Medicine? Cell Phone?

 

Transportation… that is probably a need, because you have to work to fulfill the other needs but how much transportation do you need?  Can you get there on a bike?  Or on a bus??  Do you need a Hummer?  Or will a minivan work?

Internet… that is a want… we can live without it… if you need it for your job, it will be provided at the work place… if you don’t have it at home, you can go to the library or other public places to access it.

Medicine…yes, this is probably a need… if it is critical to your health.   Would we need as much medicine if we were just filling our wants and less of our needs… i.e. less junk food would help us control our weight and blood pressure and cholesterol.   However, cancer treatments, insulin for diabetics, and other such medicines are definitely needs.

Cell Phone… nah… that’s a want… any phone is a want.  You can live without it.  Remember something called the mail?  Would it be difficult, of course.  We still have a landline and I love it.  It gets better reception than any cell phone.

 

What about relationships?  Are they a want or need?

I think they can fall into both categories.

A child NEEDS his/her parents for care and nurturing.

Lust and infatuation would fall in the want category… you WANT someone because you enjoy the feelings and euphoria it brings.

What about long-term love?  How many times do we hear stories about couples married 50+years and they die within a short time of each other?  Maybe they really did NEED each other for survivial?

 

Are most of our  WANTS really just selfishness?  Yes, I think so.

And then you get into a battle of wills and/or wits over whose want is more justified.  Maybe even you throw out the word NEED.  But is it really a need??

For example:  the recliner is broken – should have been in the trash several years ago… is it a want or a need to get it replaced??  I suppose it is  want, but you haven’t seen it!   😉

 

Isn’t most of our lives just about our wants?  Just about getting things that make us happy?  About seeing who is the most deserving, or who can make the better argument for something, or pushes the hardest, or steps on others to get things?

 

Shouldn’t we be more loving, giving, understanding, helpful, self-sacrificing, generous, and kind?  Of course.  Will that fill our wants?  Maybe… if it is in context with the right people.  With the wrong people we will be just walked over and “abused.”

 

Shouldn’t we desire to have some of our wants fulfilled?  Maybe not ice cream every day… or a fancy new recliner… or a hummer… or a big house… or a cell phone…

But some things… as everyone should have… kind words, kind actions, generosity, faithfulness… if those things are given and reciprocated those material wants will become less and less important to us and the emotional/spiritual wants will fill us to capacity and we won’t even care that ice cream is in the freezer.

 

Not Decluttering

I know that you thought I was doing great with the decluttering in January.     🙂

 

You were probably worried that I was going to stop and my house is still very cluttered (if you have ever been here you know this).

February has been a lot of stuff that I don’t need to do.

A whole week on cookbooks.  I probably could declutter a few more, but that isn’t a problem.

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A whole week (this one) on setting up a recycling center.  We have always been recyclers and have a cardboard bin and a metal & plastic bin.  So don’t need to do that one.

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The cardboard is off loaded weekly to the bin at church.

They did want me to get rid of plastic bags and change all to re-usable bags.  What would we put in our trashcans if I did that.  The plastic bags are are stored neatly anyways.

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Plenty of cloth bags that we do use.  Not at the grocery store, but to carry things to meetings and school and such.  The plastic bag holder is on the inside of a door under the island.

Next week is a whole week of coupons.  I don’t coupon, so I’m off the hook for that week.

The last week of the month is menu/meal planning. Eh… I’ve tried that, done that but when we are hardly ever home at the same time for meals, it makes it harder to plan well.  So, maybe… in March I’ll have more to do.

Yes, there are some areas that I didn’t completely get to in January (freezer especially) but I’m not worried or upset about it.

OH – I did finally finish the main frig.

before:     DSCF2737

after: DSCF2750

Frig?

I’m behind on the declutter thing.  Mainly because some of it I’m not doing since it doesn’t apply to me.  Some of it just laziness and busy-ness.

At the end of January we were to declutter the frig and freezers and clean them.  Yeah…. didn’t quite get that done.  Did declutter the auxiliary frig.

Before:

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After:

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The bottom drawers were full of water and bags from the creamers that are usually stored there.  I threw away at least 3 grocery bags of outdated or gross stuff.

Main frig –  I only conquered the doors (so far):

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Yes, I know it doesn’t look much different, but things are now organized with like items.  Of course, will the rest of the family keep them that way.  Not likely.     😦

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This side looks more full after, but I moved some things off the shelves to the door.

Additionally, I took the tubs of lard to the auxiliary frig to store them until we make soap again.     🙂

 

 

I haven’t tackled the freezer yet, but need to.  I was supposed to dust and declutter the top of the cabinets this week as well.  Might not bother with that.  And then sort recipes, nah, I did that when I made the family cookbook.  Declutter cookbooks, I sorta did – I sent a couple to the garage sale pile.  Most are church cookbooks from where we served and cookbooks that I actually access on occasion.

 

Most of February looks like not much for me to do (like coupons – don’t have them, and making  a menu/grocery list – nah).  So, I will catch up on some of the missed areas this month.