Love Sucks

There is no way around it.  It just does. Not all the time, but just today in my Teacher life!

I love my kids each year with all my heart.  I give and give and give and give so much of myself to them each day.  I have high expectations for them such as following the rules, being respectful, getting along with others.  Most days they get it. But today, they didn’t. And I felt defeated and unloved and done.

When school was over, I went to find my best friend and get a hug. We talked and prayed and thought of strategies to change their bad behaviors.  I went home drank a chai latte, strong coffee and ate chocolate chips. I began to write my bible lesson for Friday’s Bible Club at school. It’s on the Love Chapter:  1 Corinthians 13:4-7. And I decided to be honest in my blog. Usually for Valentine’s Day, I will write something encouraging and lovely. But this year, this just seemed fitting.  

Worldly Love isn’t always lovely.  It isn’t always joyous. It isn’t always kind.  It is mean and rude. It is sad and relentless. It is disappointing and cruel.  It is of the world, not of God.

God’s Love is very patient and kind, never jealous or envious, never boastful or proud, 5 never haughty or selfish or rude. Love does not demand its own way. It is not irritable or touchy. It does not hold grudges and will hardly even notice when others do it wrong. 6 It is never glad about injustice, but rejoices whenever truth wins out. 7 If you love someone, you will be loyal to him no matter what the cost. You will always believe in him, always expect the best of him, and always stand your ground in defending him. (The Living Bible)

I strive to be like Him, but I always fall short as we all do.  We are not perfect like God, so there is no way we could ever love like God.  We should always strive to do so, though. We shouldn’t give up just because one day sucks or we feel we failed.

I realize that I just gave myself a pep talk and advice.  Which happens a lot, by the way. Sometimes I’m my only cheerleader. I know that I will go back to school tomorrow and love on my kids and many days after that.  I know tomorrow will be different as are all the other days to come. Days will turn into months and months into years and a different crowd of kids will be raised and loved by an awesome Teacher.

But today,.today………….. Love Sucks!

Happy Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is a day where love is shown, but everyday should be a day we show our love.  Love should not be saved for special days.  It should be something we do all the time, without thinking and without expecting something in return.  

1 Corinthians 13 is scripture that is referenced to when talking about love.  I grew up knowing it was the “Love Chapter” and my mom made me memorize it.  I want you to re-read the verses and replace your name where the word “Love” is.  Can you say you really know how to love?

3-7 If I give everything I own to the poor and even go to the stake to be burned as a martyr, but I don’t love, I’ve gotten nowhere. So, no matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love.

Love never gives up. Love cares more for others than for self. Love doesn’t want what it doesn’t have.  Love doesn’t strut,  Doesn’t have a swelled head,  Doesn’t force itself on others, Isn’t always “me first,” Doesn’t fly off the handle, Doesn’t keep score of the sins of others, Doesn’t revel when others grovel, Takes pleasure in the flowering of truth, Puts up with anything, Trusts God always, Always looks for the best, Never looks back, But keeps going to the end. (The Message)

True love only comes from God.  He is the one who loves unconditionally.  He loves us unconditionally.  If we are following God and learning His ways, we should also strive to love unconditionally.  Love is shown in many different ways:  a smile, touch, hug, candy, flowers, dinner, phone call, note, letter, text, voicemail, time, etc.  Let someone know how much you love them today, because you are not promised tomorrow.

Whom Not to Love

Usually I write something fluffy about Love before Valentine’s Day, but I decided it was time to come clean.  Being transparent is one of the hardest things to do, but if it helps someone else or points people in the right direction, that’s a story I want to tell.

Let’s talk about Online Dating Scams!  If you have ever been contacted on a social media website to have a conversation with another person whom you might be interested in, it could be an online dating scam.  Maybe not always, but of the three conversations I’ve had with gentlemen over a social media site, it was always true.

The first time, the conversations lasted about a week before he asked me for money and that he loved me.  I told him he was crazy and that I was not sending him money.  I reported him to the social media site and blocked him.  He claimed he was in the military. He was widowed and had a child living the states with his aunt.  So sad.  He had stolen someone else’s pictures as his own and they found out.

The second time, I was a little weary but I was curious to see what would happen.  I know, curiosity killed the cat.  But I was curious anyway.  I had my wall up, so I just went along with it.  We talked for about 2 weeks before he wanted me to transfer money for him through my bank.  Yeah, right!  I told him, NO! He kept asking in different ways, but my answer remained the same.  One day, he asked me in a way like I had already sent him money before, then I knew that not only was he trying to scam me but was also scamming other people while talking to me.  So sad.  He talked about being a widow and about his kids.  No conscience at all.  I reported him to the same social media site and blocked him.  I also reported him to the FBI because I realized this happens a lot and they need to know the names of these folks.

The third time and last time,(still curious, I mean really, 3 in a row?) I conversed with someone who claimed to be in the military overseas.  He was a widow and had a young child living in the states.  It only took a week before he asked me to send him a $50 gift card.  Really?  First he asked me if I had a credit card.  I told him that I didn’t discuss money with people I don’t know.  But he just wouldn’t quit.  Then he outright asked me for the gift card after, of course, he told me he loved me twice.  Really?  I told him that he couldn’t love me, he doesn’t even know me!  So, I reported him to the same social media site, the FBI and blocked him.

Please, Please, Please don’t fall for these people.  I pray that you will be able to discern the difference between them and the ones who are true.  If you can’t, please don’t have anyone!  It’s not worth it.  With all these social media sites, it’s really easy to be drawn in to want to talk to someone and see if there is a way to become friends or be in a relationship.  But not at the cost of your life and financial freedom.  They don’t deserve you!

There are signs to avoid an online dating scam:  BEWARE!

  1. They say they love you, but they’ve never met you.
  2. They want to get off the social media site and message you directly.
  3. They are working outside the states or traveling overseas.
  4. They are single with children or widowed with children who are living in the states.
  5. They act like they are interested in getting to know you, but eventually ask you to send them money by credit card, gift card or wire transfer through your bank.

Love is out there, but not this way!  Find someone you can meet face to face, talk to a long time and pray for your future.  They are not on social media, they just maybe around the corner.  You just haven’t run into them yet.

Please check out these online dating scam articles:

1. https://www.fbi.gov/contact-us/field-offices/sandiego/news/press-releases/fbi-warns-of-online-dating-scams

2. https://www.scamwatch.gov.au/types-of-scams/dating-romance

3. https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/2017/07/20/fbi-says-internet-romance-scams-rise/485311001/

Article References:

1. Special Agent Davene Butler, (February 11, 2016)

2.  ScamWatch.gov.au, ACCC

3. Kellie Ell, USA Today, Published 1:27 p.m. ET July 20, 2017 | Updated 4:16 p.m. ET Nov. 29, 2017

It’s not me, it’s you!

Valentine’s Day can be thrilling and scary! Thrilling if you have someone to share it with and scary if you don’t. But I’m here to tell you that your Valentine’s Day can be thrilling whether you have someone to share it with or not.

Valentine’s Day isn’t you getting something from someone; it’s you giving to someone. St. Valentine’s didn’t get something from the people came in contact with, he gave them something. Love isn’t about what can I get, it’s about what I can give. When you don’t have someone to share this day with you feel lonely, insecure, unloved, ugly and unwanted; I know I’ve been there. I’ve been single for 16 years and felt like it, most of my married life. I have felt this way for many years. But this year, I realized it’s not about me. It’s not about my feelings and insecurities. I don’t have to feel this way. The devil made me do it! He makes me feel this way, not love!

Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrong. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails. (1 Corinthians 13:4-8a)

Love will not fail you if you use it well. You don’t love to get something, you love to give something. You are wonderfully and beautifully made. God made you out of love; his love for you! He knew you would be this exciting, creative, beautiful, prosperous, loving, fruitful, caring person. He knew because he created you!

For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb. I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the secret place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one came to be. (Psalm 139:13-16)

You are not mistake; you were made on purpose for a purpose. You are not unloved; God loves you and will give the desires of you heart.   You are not ugly; you are wonderfully and beautifully made. You are not unwanted, God wants and loves you! Be free, my friend, of the scariness of Valentine’s Day! Get a box of Valentine cards or candy and share it with your neighborhood or take it to a Nursing home/Retirement home. Invite a neighbor or someone from work/church to have dinner with you. Spend time loving on your kids and take them out all dressed up! Give back, pay it forward. The love you’re looking for doesn’t come from someone else; it comes from you and what God has placed inside of you! Share that love with others and you will forget all about the scariness of Valentine’s Day.

Remember, It not about me, it’s about you!