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Monday, January 29, 2007

Julia Blogs!

Julia is now blogging. This is so exciting!

Andrew and I have been encouraging her to start her own blog. Her teacher says she needs to work on her writing. She is very to the point in writing. Her paragraphs and reports consist of the sentence, or maybe two, that state...her point.

This is really great if you are writing newspaper headlines, a radio announcer's script or public service announcements. There's not much room in there for gab.

Julia definitely has the gift of gab. She can talk your ear off. Talking is one of her favorite ways to make a boring day go by faster. Sometimes I have to get her to call her grandparents on the phone so I can rest my ears from listening. Don't get me wrong, I love that little voice. I'm just saying she's not usually short on words.

However, she hasn't yet realized that writing is somewhat like talking...only better. You can write for as long as you want without others responding while your thoughts are going smoothly or interrupting your eloquent masterpiece.

I think she first started to see the possibilities of a blog when she and Alyssa were fighting.

Speaking of fighting, arguing and name-calling, we have been working on giving others grace, turning the other cheek ("But I tell you, Do not resist an evil person. If someone strikes you on the right cheek, turn to him the other also. Matthew 5:39) and considering others more highly than ourselves ("Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves." Philippians 2:3)

It is easy and natural to fight back, hit back, call someone a name right back. It is easy to return evil for evil; however, it is doing the hard thing to be kind to those who hurt us. The Bible clearly states that mean-treating someone is never okay. We are instructed over and over to love our enemies.

"But I tell you: Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you." (Matthew 5:44) "But I tell you who hear me: Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you." (Luke 6:27)

In fact, God's Word tells us that treating those who are mean to us kindly will "heap burning coals on their head."

"If your enemy is hungry, give him food to eat; if he is thirsty, give him water to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head, and the Lord will reward you. " (Proverbs 25:21-22)

This has been a hard one to learn, to understand, to live here in the Smith household. After all, according to Dr. Dobson the only way not to have sibling rivalry is to not have siblings. In the Smith family, siblings are in abundant supply!

Why does God want us to treat those who persecute us with love? I believe it is because it takes grace to do this. It only takes human nature and the flesh to treat others in the same manner they treat you. To treat someone much better than they deserve takes grace from God and in doing this we are, in effect, witnessing of the grace God gave us in Jesus when we do this.

When my children started to learn that by returning kindness for evil they were telling others about Jesus, they began doing it a little more.

However, in the process of learning this rule, Julia and Alyssa were fighting. Alyssa was tormenting Julia with verbal threats. Julia, at her wit's end, retorted, "When I get my blog, I'm going to put a story on it saying you're the meanest sister ever!"

Not a proud parenting moment, but a funny one.

So, that was the beginning of Julia's quest for a blog.

Now that she actually has one, she would never ever put anything bad about her sister on it!

So, this weekend we began the set up. Julia wanted a pink blog, "like yours." She wanted it to be called "The Glad Chatter, like yours." When I asked her what she liked, she said, "Let me see yours."

This put "imitation" in a new light. I always knew they were watching everything I do, repeating everything I say, trying to discover what they like while using what I like as a starting point. I just didn't realize to what extent.

I was flattered, truly, I was. I also wanted her expression to be so uniquely her that it would bring her pride and joy when she looked at it. I was glad she was studying the model of my blog; however, I wanted hers to reflect her personality and her style...born of me while uniquely her.

This is how we are reflect Christ. Being born of Him while being uniquely us. We are each to be an individual expression of Christ.
Who knew blogging could be so spiritual? I hope I can remember this when she picks out an outfit, a hair cut, a restaurant, an activity, an interest, a best friend, a college, a job, a husband...

I want her decisions to reflect where she came from and who she is.

"Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children." (Ephesians 5:1)

Andrew and I tried to start brainstorming with her, coaxing out her uniqueness, her originality, her beautiful one-of-a-kind creative spirit.

After publishing and deleting a pink blog called "The Glad Chatter Jr." she got into the flow of things. She started having fun and experimenting with things she likes, things that make her the Julia that she is.

That mature-spirited little girl who has her own opinion about everything now has her own blog!

Go visit it!


Renee Heaton said...

Fabulous idea! Maybe I can inspire Beth?

Kathryn Berilla said...

I like brown...the new black. But I guess pink is all the rage seeing as how even Michael has a shirt (pink) that says "Tough guys wear pink" what can you do!!!