Monday, August 7
Sometimes I'm the bad guy...
...'cause I'm a mom...a mom who's trying to follow Christ and model that for our children. And sometimes that means making decisions, frankly, I don't like.

For instance, I'm a Green Day fan, I guess my first known exposure was during Seinfeld's farewell montage; "Good Riddance" (Time of My Life) was the background music, and the song was perfect. During the late 90s and into the new millinium (lol, does anyone say that anymore?), I listened almost exclusively to contemporary Christian music, that of the pop variety. Now, looking back, I was pretty one-dimensional in those days, really almost sleeping my way through life, but that's another story. I'm not proud to admit I pretty much thought if you listened to anything else, you might have just purchased a one-way ticket to hell. This was a sub-conscious thought, nothing I was even aware of, but I can recall being "concerned" that a "Christian" would listen to anything else. Ugh...the arrogance, smugness, sense of superiority...ouch :(.

Let's fast forward to now, without me webbing or convuggling. OBVIOUSLY, if I can call myself a Green Day fan, that's no longer the case. Suffice it to say that following a time of spiritual desert, God found a way to break me and then build me into a woman who loves Him deeply, but stripped of much of her pride and arrogance (although those things still find ways to creep in when my focus slips even a smidgeon). I'm little more than a ragamuffin, and that's enough, because God loves me, chooses me, forgives me, accepts me, graces me and redeems me, in spite of my imperfections. Ah, but I'm a daughter of the King....the King of Kings...and I bear His image...and THAT makes me a princess:)! Now that's good stuff!

Anyway, I AM webbing, so back to me being the bad guy (sorry....).

The only GD songs I've heard are those given radio airtime; we don't own any CDs. Thomas wanted to download American Idiot (nice title), but when I googled the lyrics and saw the F-bomb in the opening stanza, I nixed it. THAT wasn't hard to be the bad guy, T understood.

I've wanted to hear the rest of the "American Idiot" CD (everything I have heard, I liked, heck, I even liked the title track until I read the lyrics.). This weekend my sister-in-law handed me the jacket (is that what you call it?) from her gifted copy of "American Idiot". Ai yi yi! half the songs drop the F-bomb. More? I can't remember. I gotta tell ya here, generally speaking, profanity isn't offensive to me (exceptions of course--excessive or gratuitous use, taking the Lord's name in vain, an adult who knows better in front of children, say, at a sporting event, etc.).

So, I'm left with a seems to me, I can't in good conscious listen to it, and that ticks me off! Like I said, it's not personally offensive, and honestly, when I listen to music, I rarely hear all the lyrics (I'm EVER THANKFUL for the availability of lyrics online, to help me help my children--me--make good choices). But, in light of my desire to please God, to let Philippians 4:8 goven my thinking, it seems like the decision is made for me.

This is not a "living under the law" issue to me; I am NOT a legalist! But........I know my kids are watching me (which is just ONE reason I'm having to re-learn how I drive, cusswords cusswords, they KNOW I'm the one with the lead foot in the family :/ and are quick to tell ANYONE about it!). They understand why I won't buy a Green Day CD...and now why I won't even listen to the rest of their stuff (unless it's free of the garbage).

My tongue is an issue; it's quick and at times wicked. My kids know this (well, anyone who knows me knows I'm spicy, and not always in the "good" way). This summer we "eliminated" some words from our vocabulary, and anyone who uses them gets to enjoy a spoonful of vinegar for 30 seconds. Guess who was the first person to use one of the prohibited words? for the record, you can't rinse your mouth with water after the 30 seconds and THAT...IS...NASTY! (but hopefully, lasting in effect) Why is it whenever a "law" is passed, I'll rebel against it? It'd be funny if it wasn't the truth.

Anyway, the bad guy. I have to say "no" to not only my kids, but sometimes myself. It's never fun. But often times, the right thing to do is also the most difficult. I can live with that.

  Into the pensieve on Monday, August 07, 2006
  Your thoughts, please (25)

At August 07, 2006, Blogger Wendy aka Cheeky said...

OK a couple of things here....

We all struggle day to day on living the right way. I have really been struggling a lot later (but I digress - this is your blog comment space - not listen to Cheeky whine space - that is my blog LOL).

I think you are doing the right things and trying to set an example for your children - one which they will not forget I might add....

As for the cussing - I don't do it in the house - and when I do its usually when I am alone...but using vinegar to deter me would just not work - I LIKE VINEGAR...yeah I know - twisted...

Loves to ya Robin - you rock!

At August 07, 2006, Blogger Robin said...

Hmmmm, me thinks perhaps Balsamic vinegar is the way to go for myself...the gooooood, expensive kind you buy by the ounce at my favorite kitchen store....I think you're on to something. The kids would NEVER try that one, it looks too disgusting (they inherited my visual eating gene :/). Get this, my daughter HID the vinegar, so so far I'm the only one who's actually "paid the price"...I keep forgetting to ask her for it. Guess that means you know where I'm headed now.

(thanks for the happy words)

At August 07, 2006, Blogger Karmyn R said...

It is so dang hard to be the role model!! And it just isn't choosing the right music or movies - I have been trying to be careful about eating correctly in front of my children - especially since my daughter has a major sweet tooth! I don't want her to have years of weight battle like me - so when I get the munchies, I am trying to remember the healthy choices - it is so hard. Can't hide eating chocolate and ice cream. it sucks being a mom sometimes!!!

At August 07, 2006, Blogger Heather said...

Here's the harder thing about Phil 4:8 for me: it comes directly after the whole rejoicing always, acting with gentleness, not being anxious, all because we have the right focus of the Lord being near so that we may enjoy His peace. So, it seems that 4:8 follows that: thinking rightly about values and priorities and material and hard times. That's what is hard for me to model. I'm rather attached to my complaining.

At August 07, 2006, Blogger willowtree said...

Thanks for dropping by robin, if you need to escape the constrictions of being an exemplary christian, I'll make sure I've always got the occassional cussword on my blog for you :) Come to think of it, I cuss more when I talk than when I write, but then I live with two dogs and two cats and they can sometimes bring out the worst in me (but mostly they bring out the best)

I totally agree about the vinegar thing, if it was balsamic I'd produce a stream of profanities just for the reward!

At August 07, 2006, Blogger Susannah said...

Beautiful. I love your honesty and transparency. Being a Mom gives us an education we didn't plan on doesn't it? It's a good thing!

At August 07, 2006, Blogger Pamela said...

not a bible quote, but one of my favorite:

It is no use walking anywhere to preach unless our walking is our preaching.
St. Francis of Assisi

(but don't look at me...... I'm not preaching, no sirreee bob)

At August 07, 2006, Blogger Malissa said...

great post.

So true that we are not under the law but sometimes standards are necessary because it's better for us.

The "all things are lawful but not all things are expedient" verse comes to mind.

eww on the vinegar!

At August 08, 2006, Blogger Amanda said...

I haven't heard any of Green Day's new music, but I can say that I enjoyed them in the early part of their career.

I was reading your post, thinking about the very purpose of music; it is an expression of one's feelings, or perhaps a record of an event. When someone is so moved by a feeling or an experience, they tend to include profanity to help emphasize what they feel is important. (Not that you didn't already know that... )

Point being, don't feel guilty for listening to Green Day (or any other band for that matter) that uses "big people" words. You don't have to love the words they are using in order to love their message. (or melodies)

Sorry, maybe I should have commented on something else first. We don't even know one another!! haha But really, I am glad you broke out into other music, I think it is very important to be open minded about that kind of thing.

At August 08, 2006, Blogger Pamela said...

hey robin... in regards to the hummingbirds and your feeders.
They were probably dancing to Green Day. There is a reason they call them hummers.... because they never sing the bad words.

ps. the hummers were probbaly young ones staking their territory and trying to chase each other away. Fun to watch..... or perhaps your feeder needed a fresh batch of nectar.

At August 08, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I know this isn't deep, but I have a question that has been left unanswered since I was a small child....WHO DECIDED WHAT WORDS ARE CUSS WORDS AND WHICH ONES AREN'T?????

At August 08, 2006, Blogger Pamela said...


#!*#* Yeah? Good question!

At August 08, 2006, Blogger Jana said...

Very insightful post! If Shelly wants to email me, I can tell her why certain words came to be "bad" words, in English at least. But I agree with you that I don't really have a problem with vulgarities from other people. I just don't like to hear it in my house. I think you're right to keep songs with words like that out of your home.

At August 08, 2006, Blogger Unknown said...

Great thoughts here! I also hate that some things that I would really enjoy (such as movies, etc) without a big dose of profanity or just smut are ruined for me. It makes it hard to say "no" but it's the right thing.

At August 08, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Good for you :). I enjoy some non-Christian music alot, but mostly it is instrumental. Even if I do listen to some other music it is usally rock from the 70's and 80's :).

At August 08, 2006, Blogger Robin said...

looooonnnnnnnnnnnggggggg day, head still throbbin' after "takin' two"...but wanted to thank you for the words of encouragement. I wrote a note to y'all this morning, and lost it (*&%%^) when I was looking to see if Amanda was Pamela's and Karmyn's "Amanda" and I think that's when the headache began (tiny lol there). Anyway, check back here tomorrow 'cuz I had a point of clarity to make. Right now, I think I'd just sound whacked.

At August 08, 2006, Blogger Julie Carobini said...

The driving comment hit home especially. My son's nearing driving age and I probably will be telling him often to "do as I say and not as I do." Ugh. Not that I'm a bad driver, just a crabby one -- :-0

At August 13, 2006, Blogger Rebecca said...

Cider vinegar is yummy.

At August 13, 2006, Blogger Anna Venger said...

This was a terrific post. I used to be a lot more arrogant also. A few humbling experiences will knock that right out of a person, huh?

It's good for children to know that we are all just fellow travelers on this path and that we are not perfected yet, either.

At August 13, 2006, Blogger Reverberate58 said...

Wonderful post. So much that we listen and hear is harmful to our kids and also to us! Sometimes saying Because I'm The Adult, just doesn't count! Wonderful post on lessons learned or being learned! I hope you and yours have a blessed Sunday!

At August 13, 2006, Blogger Janice (5 Minutes for Mom) said...

good for you for following your convictions. it definitely can be difficult at times!

At August 13, 2006, Blogger Mary said...

I loved your post, and it is hard to give up something that you love , I agree. It only makes it slightly easier when you realize it's for the good of the ankle biters.

Vinegar... hmmmm. My hub and I are potty mouths at times, we had a dollar jar. But soon we realized that since I stayed at home with the kids, the penalty didn't really sting for me. So it was like he was being penalized whether he cursed or not, LOL!

Anyway, kudos for being strong, and being strong in the Lord.

At August 14, 2006, Blogger Karmyn R said...

Okay, I had to add one more comment about cussing....

My grandmother always used words like, "Fudge", "son of a gun", "goodness sakes alive" etc...because she figured she wasn't actually cussing that way.

I use these words too - HOWEVER, arn't we still cussing in our heart? Even though we use a different word for it, inside its the same. Saying "OH Fudge" may lessen the sound of the cuss, but it is still a cuss.

At September 03, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

damn...if profanity is gonna get ppl band from your listening...go back to CCM.

At September 05, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

agape...trying to reconcile your anon post name and your comment. what were you smoking? cloves?


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