Monday, July 30, 2018

My Pharisee Meter

 This Jimmy Stewart clip reminds me of when my Pharisee meter goes off.  Ha!

It usually starts at the store or something like that.   It could happen on twitter, it could be a liberal or a conservative ...Pharisee.

It can be a liberal pastor's wife who blocks us for say, challenging her support of all things liberal although she throws a little Christianese in.  Yes, she blocked me and I was being nice.  It's nice to be nice right?   Well, apparently she is only tolerant of her brand.

It can happen in the grocery store.  Maybe it's someone from a very insider smalltown church.  Yes, unfortunately, they are there.  Baptist, Pentecostal.   They are there.

  (EDIT) 7.31 8:34am  I feel the need to clarify that these people I am describing below are married to leaders in the church and have attended these places for years.  One of the churches, a fundamental church, that contains two of the offending women actually put a young woman out in the cold to wait for her parents to pick her up at a youth party because her skirt was too short.  The young girl was one of the youth picked up by the bus ministry.  People in that community who would send their children and youth on the church buses to the church heard and would not allow their children and youth to attend there any longer.  Who would blame them?  That's sad to me, the entire situation. 

I not only have my father's sensitivity but also his sense of humor you will read here in small glimpses in this entry.

And as my cousin once had written on her facebook description...'Beware I speak the truth'.

*big smile*


I actually had had enough once after more then several times on different occasions, coming across a reserved woman's path and she behaved as I was invisible. She cruised past me on the dish towel aisle at the dime store ...I felt very much like Jimmy Stewart above...  What did you do Mrs. Amelia?   I said  BOO as she circled around the cap of the aisle to the other side ...I did.  ....and then I smiled to myself as I was most surprised at myself!  I almost started laughing out loud!  (Think Mrs. Ingalls in one of those situations)

Yes, I know people can be rather shy and on the introverted side but can't we be a bit giving in that respect and politely say hello?  Is it that far out of our comfort zones?  Isn't it the Jesus way to say...Hello?  Many of us have had some serious stuff going on and the last thing we need is the dedicated longtime churchies to treat us as an outcast.  And trust me, I am an Anne of Green Gables i.n.f.p. personality type...I love my quiet and my imagination, but can't we say hello?  (Shrugs shoulders).

It could be the Methodist.  It can be perhaps you brought up the wrong relative's name, you know, that pharmacist cousin of yours?   You saw his wife's name (who you haven't even met for Pete's sake!) on the roll so you thought it would connect you somehow, so after that, they look at you like mean-spirited chickens staring at the new hen coming in.  (Sorry chickens, don't mean to insult you, little creatures.)  Apparently, they didn't like my cousin's wife!  Wow.


The Gospel is summed up by loving our neighbor.  If we say we have Christ and act as we hate our neighbor how do we love God?   There are so many scriptures on showing love.  I don't understand the disconnect just as I don't understand the disconnect when people don't spend time with God who they say they love.  Maybe that is why they act in these ways?  They don't understand the character of God or know God, they are not spending time with Him, ... They just attend church?

1 John 4:20


Years ago...


Mike was quite a guy. Years ago, my Realtor husband would help him with his real estate needs and Jem always said...If Mike ever gives his life to God he is going to be dangerous.  (in a good way).  You would have had to know Mike.  The man was older and has gone to be with God, but he was a stereotype Italian type city guy, a wheeler-dealer.  He was Ukrainian but reminded me of a big-city Italian guy.

What happened?  One day Mike gave his life to God.  Fully.

Jem and I had always talked to him off and on, I remember gently debating him on pro-life issues as I was pregnant with our third little baby.

Sure enough, Mike was true-blue.  He was very sold out to God.  The only way right?  He told Jem then in his New York accent on visiting churches...I can tell the churches that are real.  One thing can tell me.  If they have love.

I think of Mike often.  The year before last I made sure to send him a Christmas card first, instead of answering his.  He sent one back to us with a precious message to us and words reminding to always seek God the Father.

He passed away shortly after.


I really felt I needed to write this Friends, I think most of those if not all who read this so understand and if not?  I grimace because it could be that they may be an offender or they are very comfortable for various reasons.

Just last week my meter was going off at the store once again, the grocery store.  I purposely made direct eye contact with one of the ladies I'd met in a smalltown church after noticing her repeated disengagement in the garden of produce and approaching the valley of chilled eggs....  ; )    I said hello.  She grabbed the bar of her cart and said by rote, Hello, how are you, as she strode off hurriedly.

My meter went off...I said...Fine.  Thanks for asking.  Heh.  The lady was already quite a bit a way from me by the time I said Thanks for asking!  Lea, our oldest daughter was with me.  I told Lea ...See what I mean?  

I'm so sorry Lea said.  Lea knows I'm very done with this type of thing.  Just very done.  I've gotten used to certain circles behaving this way.  I remember when I was a little thing in ballet, the other moms, the catty ones...  Jem always reminds...Proverbs says Jealousy who can stand against it?


  The past several years were so very difficult with my dad, I was feeling so estranged from him, when I did speak with him he would hurt me with his words and then he would call Lea behaving as if he was dying, Lea begging him to push the emergency button. I remember once leaving for church so distraught.  The people he was trusting and calling friends were taking advantage of him and turning his heart against us.  It was a horrible situation and I will be writing more so others will be warned.

That morning the people in the USO town church wouldn't even shake our hands at the greeting time (it was that hen effect).  When I needed the Church. (uppercase 'C')   I would usually leave a church (lower case 'c') in tears feeling like an outsider.  The only church that has ministered to me in the last several years was in downtown where my parents were married, you could feel Christ in that century-old cathedral, but sadly it now has a rather liberal group of leaders.  So grievous to me, it's another loss for me in this horrible culture.  I will be back there one day though.  They are in my prayers as are all the churches in our country.

Back to God's Children, the little sparrows looking through the window...

Cliques, insider-outsider mentality can be a very ugly thing.  People who may be new are staring through the windows.  It can be a church, it can be a family a new person married into.  It can be schools and *gasp* homeschool groups.  Sometimes we think the kids are behaving rudely and all we have to do is look at the mothers or fathers many times.

I told Lea, I'm not bitter at all, that doesn't do any good at all, bitterness only hurts us... But I do have their number.  (It's a good thing I grew up as an only child and am used to standing and discerning on my own.) : )  It is refreshing to stand alone at times in Christ.  We know He sends fellowship as He sees fit! : )

Pharisee Meter

*a smile*

I'll close with some sweet photos.

This is my precious sparrow friend.  I call him little Muffie like one of my little schitzu rescue dogs.  Isn't he sweet?  I met him on the Mississippi River in New Orleans.

This is our little deer friend.  Lea took her photo as she was standing beautifully on our road as we came back from the store... she casually walks into the forest as she is not afraid of us.  So sweet.

My short morning walk this morning...  I love this view.  Can you imagine what Ann of Green Gables would have said about this?

Well, that's the wrap for this fine evening.  The good thing?  There are some great people to always get to know, they are usually where we least expect it.  : )

All is well, I have my Grandma Oddo's Eggplant recipe in the oven, Italian fragrance is wafting through the air.

Lea shared with her singles adult Sunday school class that eggplant was her comfort food.  They thought that was funny!  Ha!

I think most of them have never had an eggplant sandwich even?  Bless their hearts...

*big smile*

I appreciate all of you,    Amelia in the Forest


Barbara said...

The Lord is our comfort and strength, our very present Help in times of trouble.

Some people have not experienced what we have and therefore have no idea the impressions they put on us. Then it's up to us to treat them with civility when they don't acknowledge us. It's hard.

You are not alone, and you have said that. You know there are others of us who have felt similarly. Be of good courage as you work through the issues of grief and memories.

Be strong, be strong, be strong in the Lord, as the hymn says. I hum these words to myself often when [whatever] is trying to get me down.

Have a blessed day and accept my blogger hug! xo

Amelia said...

Yes, He is so very much our comfort. : ) What would we do without Him?

It's very true that not all have experienced what we have, sadly I agree.

What is such a shameful thing in these situations I wrote of above is it's those who are married to leaders who have been in those places for years and maybe that is the problem. It's so disheartening to know these people are representing Christ and doing this to others too.

I know of one report by sweet friends who had formerly attended one of these places for years of a young girl being put out in the cold for her parents to pick up because her skirt was too short.

I sometimes think Jesus Himself would say 'Boo' and more. *big smile*

Thankfully I've been able to comfort another younger lady who is also considered an outsider who was treated very much in the same way and what is so very sad for her is that her young husband is an unbeliever and suicidal. It's refreshing to see that young lady's huge smile from across the store now as a friend.

I also love the hymn, 'What a Friend We Have in Jesus'. That is what Jem and I always sing when we see this most demonic activity.

Thank you so much Barbara, I appreciate you! The grieving process is up and down but ascending.

I'm an 'Anne' with a twinge of prophet and good natured mischief (like my dad!). *big smile*

(((hugs))) to you Barbara!

Anonymous said...

Hello....I just found your blog from another blog and I am so happy I did. The Jimmy Stewart clip had me laughing......yes, what is it with people? I have been in so many situations around folks who are uncomfy to be around. It would be nice if people, especially Christians had a polite greeting for others.
Have a great day!

Amelia said...

Hello Shirley, It's so nice to meet you! I just took a peek at your blog, and I just love it there! It's so warm and cozy, it makes me want to stay for coffee and chat. It speaks such Peace.

Your comment is a Blessing to me! : ) Thank you so very much for taking the time and pay a visit. I hope you are having a great day too. It's a blustery day here as I watch the leaves fall from trees like an autumnday.

Take care now, until the next time. Hugs! ~Amelia

Anonymous said...

Coffee right over😊

Amelia said...

I'll put it on! : D

Debbie Harris said...

Excellent, well written post full of truth sadly to say.
Where is the love...I stand amazed at the behavior of those who profess to call themselves Christians, flowers of Jesus Christ.
We are to be like Christ, yet many times that is not what we see in the lives of others.
Hippocrates is what they are.
I've seen first hand of the treatment you speak of with the young lady in a mini skirt, and it brought devastation to that life.
Where is the love and the Christ they profess to know?
I appreciate your honesty and willingness to share real life.

Your walk looks lovely and I can only imagine what Anne of Green Gables would have to say about it.
I would love to walk with you and have sweet fellowship as we share of our Precious Savior together.

God's blessings be upon you, sweet lady~

Amelia said...

Debbie, Thank you, thank you, thank you. I can see that you so get this.

It is soooo bad what I see many times, and yes, I can see how a life can be devastated by the 'mini skirt' treatment and various other 'treatments'.

It's so bad that many folks who don't know God equate knowing God with knowing church. So many churches are the church, not the Church. As an older saint with red hair in a bun with somewhat of an Irish brogue, I met in a resale shop one day quietly told me as she pointed her finger sweetly to my heart...

'In these last days, Church will have to be in our hearts!'

Oh Debbie, what I describe here is just a very tiny tip of the iceberg of what I have seen over many years. You have seen too. We can certainly see where the enemy of our souls is so at work in these churches and elsewhere and hurting people.

Christ must weep Debbie, He must weep. May we be the ones to show that care which you do so very well. : )

Thanks for being with me on my walks! : )

Bless you too Debbie, I hope you are doing well and healing up nicely.

Michelle said...

Wonderful post yet again. It's truly sad how "Christians" can treat one another, yet a good lesson for us all on how NOT to be. So many mean spirits, or plain ol' jealousy. It's so simple to kindly smile or acknowledge someone to brighten their day or show them the love of Christ.

It's been too long since I've seen "You Can't Take it With You". Need to watch again!

And those are some beautiful photos! 😍

Amelia said...

Thank you Michelle!

Yes, it is so true. It is a very good lesson, and we know God uses these situations to teach us many times to make sure to be sensitive and kind to others. So in that way, it's a blessing.

"You Can't Take it With You". Yes. Greatness, it's that Frank Capra greatness. : ) It's also a nice movie because it definitely has Christian elements in it as many of Frank Capra's films.

Glad you enjoyed the photos, it's so much fun capturing life in that way. <3

Lea said...

It definitely is sad how some professing believers treat others. As someone else commented, it is such a good reminder to deliberately choose to be different and reach out to others even when it's out of our comfort zone. For many, much of it boils down to plain old fashioned selfishness, I think. But I think we can all agree that sometimes there are much more deep rooted issues at play as well. It must hurt Christ's heart to see His children being hurt like this. Again, I'm so sorry, Mom.

May His love abound in our hearts and overflow into our daily interactions with those around us.

And I love your pics too... such a cute little Muffie bird! And you posted the deer pic! I'm so glad he stayed still long enough to get that pic!

Love you, Mom. <3

Amelia said...

Lea, Yes, it is so, so very sad. And yes, so many deep-rooted issues at play.

Unfortunately, there not only are sad issues but shallow lives, the need for many women to be 'a part of a group' because of insecurities. So they proudly become part of a clique much like a member of a college sorority minus any upper-crust manners. They do not seem to have their identity in Christ but in an organization or church. There is also a sectarian spirit at play in many churches. It's not Christ and I'm repeatedly surprised on what I see. Some of it is rudeness, and I wish the churches would adress some of that. Some of it is truly jealousy, that hen effect.

My impish 'boo' as the woman rounded the corner to the other aisle? It reminded me of Billy Graham's daughter, Gi Gi blowing a kiss to a woman in a parking lot. *big smile*. Thoughts of my father, your grandpa throwing the rulebook down the aisle when he was on city council in front of NASA engineers and everyone else. I love what Michael Barry asked on the radio the other day, something to the effect of: When is the last time you fought for the underdog or took up for someone? Ruffled feathers, churned the water, rock the boat? My impish 'boo' was good-heartedly calling the woman out with a wink and a smile so to speak.

So glad you liked the pics! Yes! The little deer was my little Godsend after our grocery trip! <3

Love, Mom

Lea said...

Yes, I definitely agree... most women (probably about 95%... ha!) are very insecure and need to feel that they belong... even at the risk of the exclusion of so many others. It is so prevalent and so very hurtful. Very sad indeed. It's actually very immature really. So unChristlike. How His heart must hurt when selfishness and insecurity trumps showing His love.

And lol... I know what you mean. I don't think I would've had the courage to call someone out like that in such a lighthearted way! haha! How funny!

Love you! Your eldest :D