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Thursday, October 25, 2012

…Clearing the Air

Howdy from Georgia!  It’s been a while since I last posted, and I wanted to touch base with all of you for a bit. This will be quite a lengthy post, so please bear with me as I clear the air about some things that have brought to my attention.

When I first started blogging a few years ago, I did it as a means to share and document some of the paper-crafting I was doing at the time. I was enjoying perusing the internet, other blogs and paper-crafting communities to find (and try to be) some inspiration. I “met” some fabulous ladies and gentlemen in the process of blogging and cardmaking, and even got to spend some time with some local ladies that also shared a love of stamping and crafting in general. But I also “met” a lot of individuals who were one thing on the computer and another in real life. I guess that’s the dark side of the world wide web…anyone can act and/or portray themselves as anything they wish without being policed or held accountable. Such an incident happened earlier today while I was checking the comments waiting to be reviewed for publication. A “certain unnamed stamper” left a comment (which has been deleted by me) stating that she was so disappointed in the direction that my blog has gone since I left the stamping community, and that she would not be returning to view my blog again. She went on to imply that the posts I created regarding the books that I have read over several months upset her to no end. She is entitled to her own opinion, and quite frankly, so am I….so here we go!

I have always tried to keep my blog posts light-hearted and “fluffy” as to be an inspiration and positive experience for the readers….all of the readers (unless I needed to vent, of course). This “certain unnamed stamper” insinuated that I should be posting more “Christian” things since I had stated over a year ago that I was taking a break to focus on my walk with the Lord. As a result, there were several weeks and months when I didn’t post anything to my blog so that I could get my spiritual life on track. During that time I sold or gave away every stitch of stamping and crafting stuff that I had accumulated over the years. Wanna know the WHOLE truth???

I walked away from the crafting community because of women like this “certain unnamed stamper”! My personal experience in the stamping world is that most (not all, but most) of the people out there are simply looking out for Number One, and Number One ONLY…and they don’t give a flip who they demolish in the process. I have witnessed and been privy to backbiting, lying and scheming, and deceitful behavior the likes of which would make your hair stand on end! ALL FOR THE MIGHTY DOLLAR AND ATTENTION!!! And then after months and months of having NOTHING to do with that community, I’m reprimanded and belittled for not being “Christian enough” in my posts on my personal blog. My relationship with the Lord is NO ONE’S business but my own, but to set the record straight….those books were read at night whenever I layed down to go to sleep (and I still do the same thing). They were read after I had spent the day as a stay-at-home mom and devoted wife doing all of my chores and household duties for the day. They were read after I had spent my quiet time with my Bible and my Lord. They were read in order to help me wind down and fall asleep…much like people watch television as they fall asleep. Yes…I could have used that time to read the Bible again, but I didn’t. I had a teenager in my home who was reading these books and others like them, so I was making sure that I knew EXACTLY what was in them…and I enjoyed most of them. That doesn’t mean that I’m any less “Christian” than the next person either. I’m sure there are people out there who sit on their couches and enjoy questionable television shows when they should be reading their own Bibles, but I’m not about to judge or call out someone when I don’t know their heart or their character.

It’s been said that we should guard our character which is who we actually are, and we should think less of our reputation which is what people think we are. I have walked away from communities, friendships and relationships (including some of  my own family members) in order to guard my character and protect my family. I was raised here in the South by Christian parents who instilled in me that your words should be the truth, your walk should match your talk, and right is right even if no one else is doing it. I’m not one who enjoys drama or controversy, but I’m not afraid to stand up and defend myself when necessary either…and when someone threatens my integrity I find that highly offensive. You don’t have to like me or every single thing that I post on my blog, but that’s just it, isn’t it??? It’s MY BLOG. I’m not gonna be on here every day bearing my heart and soul to individuals who would rather be trying to tear someone down than to lift them up…that’s not who I am. I have made bad decisions just like everyone else, but I’m at the point in my life where I am making no apologies for who I am or what I stand for…to ANYONE! I can’t tolerate liars or those who think they are “holier than thou”…and I won’t tolerate them. All I can do is pray for these people, NOT associate with them, and do what’s best for me, my husband and my children…after all, they are the ones I answer for.

If this post offends anyone, then you are welcome to stop following my blog. I will not lower or compromise my standards simply because they don’t conform to everyone else’s morals and/or beliefs. I will not be changing the format of my blog either…I will post what I want when I want. Welcome to America and the South! Amen. 

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16 comments:

Jayne said...

Hear, hear! I'm a pastor's wife and I heartily agree with you. 'nuff said. I do miss your lovely creations, though.

Vera Yates (Ling) said...

Mercy, I totally agree with you. This is your blog. You have it for you not for anyone else. And, yes a person relationship to God is a very private matter. I am glad that you stay true to yourself.

I've followed your blog for awhile, but I am not good in leaving comments. But, I feel I need to this time. Because I understand how you feel and I applaud your honesty.

I have experienced it where a person could be one thing on line and totally different or kind of bullyish in person. It is very disheartening sometime. Just ast there's bad people out there, there's also the good ones.

Hugs to you and have fun with your blog!! :)

ArtisticInkspirations said...

Unfortunately there are many people out there who are "two faced" as we used to say in the South and back east..I have met some of those types of people too.. in the stamping, crafting, direct sales, and regular jobs. The world is full of them. I admire you for taking the time to read all the books your teenagers are reading. I tried to keep up with all my kids were doing also and that is part of being a mom and a Godly woman..>>Know thine enemy. So keep up the good work..and keep watching those kids.. and don't worry about what others say... God Bless.. I'll still follow your blog!!

Anonymous said...

Mercy, my heart breaks when I read your last post. And you are right that so very often it's Christians hurt their own far more than than non-believers at times. I could be brief and just say, "amen," but I want to encourage you. My husband reminds me that someone else's opinion is none of your business…but he's a man. And, you are not the first person I've heard that has left the stamping community because of hurtful and insensitive (to say the least) words said. I just don't understand it, and I can only say that they are either not truly followers of Christ or not in a right relationship with Him.

Be encouraged and know that there are many who love you and still miss you in the stamping community. I myself have been so busy with so many other things that I don't post much on SCS these days. When I make cards, so often they are CASEd or copies of what I've done before, because I want to make cards for gifts and to send them to encourage people. So many times in the stamping community, it's all about "stuff' and what other people think and comments, etc., etc.

And it also took far so much time to "keep up" on SCS…for me at least.

So, my "virtual" blog friend…you just keep doing what you are doing. And keep your relationship with the Lord as you are doing, along with your family, church…and the rest will follow.

Hugs…in Christ, Cheryl (aka CherylQuilts on SCS)

Jennifer E. said...

So sorry you even had to spend time writing this kind of post. Some people can be so cruel!!! I too miss your creations and hope that all of this will be long behind you one day and that maybe you'll enjoy stamping again (and that we'll get to see your cards again too.) I'm sure there are way more people out there who would love to see them, then who would criticize you and what you do/post here. Big hugs to you!

Elaine M said...

Oh hon! I'm so sorry you've had to go through something like this. Just so sad that people feel they have the right to trash someone. I pray these wounds will heal soon and you can once again enjoy the crafting world. Hugs and blessings

Anonymous said...

AMEN!!!!!! I am a PK ( preachers kid) and I know exactly what you are talking about!!! It seems like once people know you are a Christian, they expect perfection! I have always been taught the only perfect one is our Heavenly Father! Anyone who claims to be a Christian has an example to set and if they are watching me, I will fail, their eyes should be on THE PERFECT ONE! Follow His example!!

Renee G said...

I'm with ya! I have been in the stamping world for a few years now and I feel like i just can't seem to get "ahead" so to speak its like being back in high school and you just aren't part of that "click" I too am a christian and I will not compromise my beliefs and standards to fit in or make someone happy...I applaud you for speaking up and I really cannot believe that someone would be so "weird" about what is your business! good greif what is wrong with people...I too miss your creations...but you are doing what your heart is telling you to do and that is awesome! hugs!

Michellena317 said...

I cannot imagine why anyone would have a problem with your reading list. From what I saw they were all bestsellers. I truly can't understand why anyone would have a negative comment about what books you choose to read. Maybe I am biased because I have read half of them (and I don't have kids). Follow your own heart and do what feels right to you. Your blog is a tool for you to express yourself, don't let anyone deter you from doing that.

Anonymous said...

Way to go....another woman who thinks and feels much like me. Ahhhhh it's like a breath of fresh air.

xo
Mikki

Anonymous said...

YOU GO GIRL...LOVE WATCHING YOUR POSTS AND WILL CONTINUE TO DO SO.

Marilyn Evenson

Anonymous said...

Miss your wonderful creations.
I don't comment on blogs....I am a lurker...but a friendly one.
To quote Oprah, "Once a person shows you who they are the first time, believe them."
Hugs,
Cathy from South Dakota

Cheryl said...

Mercy, my girls (high schoolers) and I have read many of the same titles and enjoyed them - and they made us no less Christian! So sorry someone was being so snooty with their comments. I'm happy to see your response - way to go!!

Elizabeth C. said...

Good for you! I didn't know being Christian was a competition. I think she must have read the wrong set of rules. Being boring will get you into Heaven? Who knew? Keep your chin up!

Susan said...

Amen Sister!!! I really believe you should post what you want on your blog. If people don't like reading it they shouldn't come back. I do, however, miss your card postings.

Vivienne Holden said...

That wasn't a Christian, that was a BIGOT!!! Long time no see my friend! You know how I can relate to what you're saying and Oh my! I wish I was as eloquent as you at getting my point across. I'm not at all religious and don't apologise for it, BUT I DO try to live by the 10 commandments oddly enough 'coz I think they are good rules for life.
Don't let bigots upset you. You are bigger than them by a country mile!
Take care, Hugs Viv xx