Days 2017

Days 2017

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Confessions of a Tongue-Biter...

I am a tongue-biter, albeit not a very good one.  I got my start by realizing I am one of those people who sees most things in black and white.  One of those people who really struggles with not being judgemental, but WANTS to only see the good in people.  I am a wuss in bright sunlight and always need my sunglasses...I wish I had an inner pair of sunglasses I could put on when the glare coming off of someone else's faults is a little too bright.  Some people are born with those inner sunglasses.  I was not and therefore, am desperately trying to train myself to be a tongue-biter.  I see you do something wrong, I KNOW you know better, but because I want to put the relationship first, the person first, the heart first, I bite my tongue.  Don't cast the first stone.  Don't judge you because you "sin differently than me".  That outer, black and white stuff is the easy part for me, I guess I get frustrated when it's not easy for everyone else.

I blame my lack of tongue-biting skills on being a born Big Sister.  Who else is going to tell you your nose is running, your fly's unzipped, you're a putz?  Who else is going to tell Mom you swore at the cats, I can see you hiding on the roof--get down here and do your dishes, what the heck are you thinking going to an R-rated move...and on a SUNDAY!  If you wear that skanky sleeveless prom dress you are going to regret it for the rest of your life, to your children's children's children. Do you want to go to you-know-where or what?  It was probably a big sister who does the forehead smacking in all those V-8 commercials.  And I must brag, now that my siblings have all thrived successfully on into their adulthood, I really haven't learned my lesson.

It did me no good to become a Mom (although it feels EXTREMELY liberating)  Moms can say anything they want for the good of the offspring!  It's beautiful!  Who else is going to tell you your brain is going to rot if you play too much Wii?  That you were a little too bossy to your friends and they aren't going to hang out with you anymore?  That you're going to get fat if you eat junkfood? That you stink and need to take a bath, change your clothes, brush your teeth?  That if you don't tell the truth you will end up scrubbing toilets in jail? That our family goes to church, doesn't drink or smoke, works hard, plays hard, prays, doesn't fight, and tries to follow Jesus, hoo-ra?  With that powerful "or else!" tone in our voices?  Ah, motherhood.

Oh, and like keeping a blog is going to help me learn to keep my mouth shut.  (Insert wicked laugh here.)

So, please, please everyone.  Take it easy on this fledgling tongue-biter, and don't do, say, wear, or post on facebook, anything I might regret.  Especially now that I have young'uns to train up in the ways of good and evil!   Imagine their poor little confused faces when we go to Seven Peaks (local water park, in Utah, where many people know much, much better.)  They just gaze at all the skin on display and look at me like, "Mom, there were a whole lot of folks who didn't read the memo!!"  A little less Sports Illustrated, and a little more Ensign would go a long way, folks.

Leslie is taking it very easy on me.  Tonight she is excited to participate in a mock fashion show with her Young Women's group, modeling modest formal wear.  (I'll have to post pictures later.)  She turned 13 this week and is a tall drink of water even without the beautiful clothes, so I'm sure tonight will launch her into knockout status.  Learning to dress modestly is one of the things she has to do to earn her Young Womanhood Recognition Award (similar to Eagle Scout status for young men).  Mothers are encouraged to earn this award alongside their daughters, so today I read some of our standards booklet that teaches principles taught by our prophet to our youth (and everyone else).  Loved this, especially going into the "dangerous" years for Leslie and her friends (who I SOOOO appreciate for making high standards so easy, thanks girls and young women's leaders).
Through your dress and appearance, you can show that you know how precious your body is.  You can show that you are a disciple of Jesus Christ and that you love him.  ....Your dress and grooming influence the way you and others act.  ....Do not use a special occasion as an excuse to be immodest.  When you dress immodestly, you send a message that is contrary to your identity as a son or daughter of God.  You also send the message that you are using your body to get attention and approval.
If you are wondering what "modest dress standard" means, here is a pretty straightforward definition.
"Immodest clothing is any clothing that is tight, sheer, or revealing...short shorts and short skirts, shirts that do not cover the stomach, and clothing that does not cover the shoulders or is low-cut in the front or back."
And in conclusion,
"The fashions of the world will change, but the Lord's standards will not change...Ask yourself, "Would I feel comfortable with my appearance if I were in the Lord's presence?"
Do I just need to love people and look past the stuff that bugs me, that I know is wrong?  Yes.  In fact, I need to repent for the even worse sin of withholding/blocking my love for them (this kind of repentance is also known as forgiveness). What's the sweetest smell in church?  Cigarette smoke.  I know this very personally from a few years ago when I accompanied someone newly released from prison back to church for the first time, smelling rankly of smoke.  I also saw her tears as the little primary children plugged their noses and loudly asked, "What stinks?"  She was afraid to come back.  Those kids were probably Eldest Children, suffering from Black and White Directness.  I recognize the symptoms.

And so, lips closed.  Heart open.  Chomp chomp.

Any tips for this tongue biter?

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