“Father, make of me a crisis man. Bring those I contact to decision. Let me not be a milepost on a single road;
make me a fork
, that men must turn one way or another on facing Christ in me.” - Jim Elliot

Thursday, May 31, 2012

My Middle Name

Walls of Jerusalem
photography by Anthony Kaetzel

My heart is heavy.  Perhaps better said... my heart feels pregnant.  About to give birth.  And it feels like it is in labor pains.  And I am hoping this post will give it birth... whatever it is.  That I might move on and forget about the pain.

I feel like I am screwing up a lot lately.  Whether I am or not is immaterial to the fact that I am getting the impression others think I am.  Well, not just the impression.

Just yesterday, I received a private Facebook message that encouraged me to keep my business to myself.  That my numerous Facebook posting was overkill.  And that the encouragement was sent in love.

Can I just say, OUCH!  I have had this request before.  Many times.  But normally from men.   Who actually do not use Facebook with any regularity.  And actually find Facebook to be a waste of one's time.  And I am easily able to move on from their comments and chidings.  Realizing that they are not interested in relationships... quite like I am.  Or realize the true capability of Facebook as a tool to mentor others in small ways.  Or encourage those who are depressed.  Or connect with those who I would not have the opportunity... time... or place to connect with.

I get it.  They are different than me.  I don't totally understand them.  And they don't totally understand me.  Point taken.  I do my best to not take it personally.  Because actually they are showing their contempt towards Facebook and not me.

But not this time.  This time I was sent a direct message.  And it is personal.

Now, mind you... I want you all to speak into my life.  I want you to feel the freedom to rebuke me in love.  To tell me if I spoke out of turn.  Or if I hurt someone's feelings.  Or hurt your feelings.  Stepped on toes.  Or even to tell me when I have spinach in my teeth.  Or toilet paper on the bottom of my shoe.  I want to know.  I want to be open to that...

But I think there should be a reminder... that if you want to speak into my life...  If you feel it is necessary to come alongside me and rebuke me or re-direct me... even in love... that you at least know my middle name.  I mean if you don't know my middle name.  You don't know me.  You don't really know what or who I am about.  Most likely it means that I may not hear what you are saying to me without being easily offended or hurt or wonder if everyone else out in the world is thinking that of me.

But if you know my middle name.  Well, you might just know me well enough to know that Facebook... for the time being... is part of who I am.  And how God has called me.   And so the response I wrote was this:
Sorry about that! But this is what I do. It is a ministry to me. I feel that staying transparent and available is part of who God made me to be. I totally understand if you would want to un-friend me or you can choose that you only see my important updates. Otherwise, I'll be posting as much as I feel compelled to... God has allowed me to use FB to touch lives across the country (and actually across continents) especially in regards to depression. And I feel that is more important than the number of postings I do in a day. I hope you understand and receive this in the love it was sent.
And I haven't decided if I will post on Facebook that I wrote this blog.  Because the response was a bit surprising to me...
I won't unfriend you because of your postings. This is a beautiful way for God to use you but other additional postings of food, etc make for extra postings. Perhaps that could be taken into consideration.
So friends... I guess if I have to choose... if I have to take into consideration... my other additional postings of food, etc...



Well, I think you better start asking me my middle name.



8 comments:

Krystle said...

Oh goodness. Words sent via email of FB or text about such things are just no good.
Sorry for the hurt. Keep doing what you are doing. I've been writing you a long email in my head for weeks and am hoping to sit down and write it out soon...because you've touched lives and I want and seek your advice. Don't stop. Hugs from me!

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

So unnecessary. Who are these people? Friends? Really? You don't need this; it feels a whole lot like bullying to me. I know what I would do, but since I don't know you're middle name:), I'll keep that opinion to myself.

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE YOU!

peace~elaine

Tammy said...

My dear sweet friend,
I am so sorry that your heart was hurt. You have a wonderful heart that I love seeing. Please don't stop what God is asking you to do. He is right there beside you. I love you dear even though I don't know your middle name.

Laura said...

I am not on Facebook...for many reasons...but this is so sad. Too bad that this individual doesn't seem to realize that THEY have the option NOT to read your FB page! But if you know that God is calling you to use FB as a tool to help others, then you DON'T have an option not to do it...not if you want to be obedient...which I know you do.

I hope you can keep trusting in the Lord to guard your reputation and just be faithful to this important ministry He has called you to!

gideonmommasita said...

last month when I had dinner with my soul sisters we discussed middle names. It really is a turn point in a relationship, and I agree whole heartedly about how you shouldn't rebuke someone unless you really know them and even then...
What is your middle name?

Patti said...

Okay, that is kind of funny to me. You don't post about food very often and when you do, it's INTERESTING food! :) I'm sorry that this hurt your feelings initially but I think you did a good job processing it and not letting the enemy silence you. People are just...funny. It's so much easier to unfriend or hide someome. They must not be friends with any teenagers on FB because if you want to talk about overdoing it when posting.... :) Love you friend and love your posts! You go girl!

Hart Leap Isaiah 35:6 said...

wow, it always amazes me when things like this happen. I tend to slip into naivete and forget that we live in such a judgmental, critical society. I was just thinking about that the other day....
and I need to be prepared for this to happen to me as I am becoming more vulnerable myself thru blogging, thru stepping out to help others.
Well, Sheri, I knew that you do what you do because it is motivated by love and when one knows that about you how can one do anything but celebrate you and the One Who Loves You.....

Shane said...

Elaine sent me over here! =) I just had something similar happen to me. Thankfully prior to my "friend" rebuking me I heard many a message about this sort of thing. And the end result that I received was - when people "strike out" it's generally reflects more about what is going on in their lives and not about you at all. Clearly this person is angry inside and it probably has NOTHING to do with you or your posts!!!!