Typical white girls

This morning I managed to have a few moments to myself and I can’t help but think about my oldest going off to college next year. I’ve been dreading and embracing it all at the same time as we ramble down the road of life at 80 mph.

Every culture has it’s own traditions and yesterday I realized that while some brands of our traditions are still expected (an expensive party), others (shall remain nameless) were, well… Typical white girl.

What’s worse is, I know what she means.

And… I agree… I don’t want her to feel like a cliche. I was thinking this morning though, where does cliche and culture collide? I certainly want her to be proud of her heritage, to know her people are strong, stoic, and yes… Faith filled.

When the talk of college began last year, my fear was she would move far away and I’d not see her again. Now my fear is she may stay so close she may not experience just how precious her culture is to the rest of the world.

Now I’m not saying we are god’s gift to the world in a hokey self serving, supremist sort of way…. We are all gods gift to each other. Really. I believe that. But I think we all forget how special we are in diverse environments.

I’m a typical white urban mom writing to you from the Midwestern plains of North Dakota. Whatever your heritage, cliche, or culture, if it means something to you… embrace it. Use blue stone ware, wear wool sweaters, hooded sweatshirts with shorts and flip flops, get that tattoo, or don’t get it.

Just stop making it a big deal.

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What’s really at the top of your Christmas tree

  I went to a neighborhood Christmas party last night. I was the first arrive. Mari had her house decked out to every detail. When one family arrived with their two small children, say 3 and 4, immediately both kids looked at the tree and pointed at the star on top.
 It was a pretty star, I thought… but no…
 I looked again at the faces of the kids, and their look wasn’t of wonderment, they were pointing TO the star, with looks of indignation. Their father told us about how his parents had a star they had used for  some time that was thrown out with the intent of replacement, but it didn’t get replaced. So when they went to grandma and grandpa’s this year, the tree just wasn’t a real Christmas tree without the star.
 Christ is a little like that star.  It’s easy to get caught up in the ornaments, the decorating, believing there’s always time to replace or repair the brokenness of our lives. To these kids, This Christmas was the most important, where was the star present in THIS Christmas? I am certain in reflection that like most the adults in my life I have been caught up in just getting the tree up, decorated and presents underneath. It is a running theme in my daily life. Just getting things done without the finale.
 At work today, Donna, a coworker with as short a temper as her height yelled, “Jesus!” as she reached for something too tall for her to get to. I responded in jest, “Donna, Jesus isn’t going to help you get that down.” I walked around the table, grabbed what she wanted and told her, “but you never know until you ask, right?”

I’m not Rob Bell. But I get it. I think.

I’m paving this

road

each brick

a good intention;

desperate….

I reach

The destination

I seek.

I find a door

where I began this journey

at the very first brick I paved.

A sign

it says “only by me”

and I notice in the corner, a small

hand written add on

“with authenticity”.