Jamie The Very Worst Missionary

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inappropriate remarks, embarrassing antics, and generally lame observations from an American Missionary.
Updated: 18 min 43 sec ago

When the Very Best Missionary isn't a Missionary at all...

Thu, 05/07/2015 - 16:05
This post contains sponsored links.

You know when you see a movie and you sort of like it, but you're also kind of bothered by it, so you can't stop thinking about it? Yeah. NOBLE is doing that to me.
NOBLE tells the true story of non-pofit founder, Christina Noble, and how her impoverished childhood, stolen youth, and abusive marriage eventually led her from her home country of Ireland to Viet Nam, in 1989, where she created a foundation that has since fed, clothed, educated, and protected thousands of orphans and street children. In short, it's an inspiring story of an ordinary woman who goes on a mission to serve the poor and vulnerable.
Except she's not a missionary.
And she's not that ordinary.

People are always asking me for advice about how to become a missionary, and, I've gotta admit, it always makes me cringe a little on the inside (and probably also on the outside, because I have a cringey kind of face). It's just that I don't want to dash anybody's passionate dreams of flying off to a foreign land where they'll walk the dusty streets hand in hand with a couple of dirt-covered brown kids they plucked from a trash heap. But also? I do. I do want to dash their dreams. I want to tell them they're delusional if they think that's how the world works.
Yyyeeaah. No
When people ask me how to get involved in aftercare for girls who have been rescued from sex-trafficking in South East Asia, I know what they're hoping I'll say is that all those girls need is for someone to “show up” and “love on them”. You should see the looks of dismay and disappointment when I give them my honest opinion, which is that they should go to school and maybe study therapy and social work, and then perhaps work in those fields for awhile, and then seek an organization overseas that needs a therapist or social worker and apply for a job with them – which, ideally, would be to train and equip nationals to offer therapy and social work for victims of sex-trafficking.
If you tell me you want to end slavery, I'll tell you to go out, into the world, and... study Economics! *womp womp* If you tell me you want to hold orphans in Africa, I'll tell you to stick around and study early childhood development.
If you tell me you want to bathe street kids in Juarez, I'll tell you I'll be watching, and if you dare touch a single child inappropriately, I will call the cops on your perv ass so fast, you'll be in a Mexican prison before you can say, “Our special hug was supposed to be a secret!”
Just call me Dream Crusher.
Can I be totally honest here? I don't think the world needs anymore social justice missionaries. We've had our fill of well-intentioned, but ill-equipped volunteers. Over the last 20 years, our sincere and valiant efforts to love mankind have wasted enough money, disenfranchised enough people, and created enough dependency to last a lifetime. Retrospect has shown us we can do better. We don't need anymore missionaries. We need actual teachers, and social workers, and business wo/men, and midwives, and therapists, and pastors, and farmers, and caregivers, and on and on and on... Because we have the greatest impact when we, specifically, send the right people, to do the right job, in the right place. 
I know. I know what you're thinking. You're like, “....but, but, but...what about all the goodstuff we've done? And what about Mother Theresa? And what about that Kisses from Katie chick? And what about that one time when I went to that one place and that AMAZING thing happened? What about that?!"
And I don't want to discredit any of the extraordinary things that have happened in the name of missions these last few years, not at all, because, yes, there has been some good stuff. But most of our amazing missions anecdotes really are extraordinary success stories – as in not typical. And not advisably clone-able. Like, Katie Davis has done a beautiful, extraordinary thing, and I honestly believe God has used her in amazing ways - but that's not a good reason for every 20 year old white girl with a “heart for missions” to hop on the next flight to Zimbabwe or whatever.
Initially, as I watched Cristina Noble's story unfold on the screen, I was irritated by that very notion. Great. Another nice little Faith story about a white chick who “feels called” to “love on” third world rug-rats, so she shows up in their country, completely unannounced and totally unprepared, and then TA-DA! She saves all the children.
But Cristina's faith doesn't come across as all that nice. In the film it comes off as pleading, faltering, demanding, confused, and even a little bit scheming – kind of like my own. And her “call” is never really defined. She saw images of the war on the news. She had a dream. Then, years later, after her kids were grown and gone, she got on a plane. Do I think that's kinda weird? Yeah. But at least she let it stew for a couple of decades before she flew away. (And, yes, we could talk for days about white savior complex – but remember this was back in1989, way before posting mission trip selfies on Facebook was a competitive sport.) What I loved, though, is that Christina Noble's capacity to help the street-children of Viet Nam wasn't born simply out of wild passion or good intention, it developed in her over a lifetime. She drew from her personal experience in poverty, her time of homelessness, her distrust of God and the Church, and all the lessons of Motherhood. She was uniquely prepared and extraordinarily equipped for the task at hand. And, y'know, I don't know anything... but, maybethat's why she's been so successful in her efforts.
NOBLEis not the story of a missionary. It's the story of a woman who was the right person, doing the right job, in the right place. And the God who never forsakes us...

NOBLE will be in theaters, Friday, May 8th - Go see it so you can come back here and we can talk about it! Tell me all your thoughts...

This post contains sponsored links.

Giving Life to Life-Giving Work

Wed, 04/08/2015 - 17:35

Friends, I try to share things with you here that I believe are life-giving in some way.

I post links to funny things and creative things and spiritual things, things that remind us we're connected to each other, things that make us feel like we're not crazy, things that bring freedom and grace and wholeness, things that are inspiring, redemptive, healing.
This is one of those things...
Brian Chandler is my people. 
He is honest and raw and genuine and real and all the stuff we love around here. He just... gets it. He gets what it is to be broken and battered and abandoned, but he also gets Grace. And on top of all that? The guy makes music that makes me cry. He writes the kind of songs that find me where I'm lost and wandering, take me by the hand, and lead me home. 
I have no doubt Night Sea will be life-giving for many. 
But first we have to give it life.
Will you help me help Brian make music that makes us cry and takes us home?
I really don't ask for much. Only that, together as a community, we end modern day slavery, fight human trafficking, consume with a conscience, eat local, love well, and lean on each other. And this. I'm asking for this...
As of this posting, we are only 7 days and a little more than $3200 away from funding a project that I believe will speak Grace and Peace to the hopeless, the hurting, the lost, and the lonely among us. It would be so cool if you were part of it. Fund it, share it, pray for it - whatever - just participate somehow, if you can. 
Click here to give life to live-giving work: https://www.kickstarter.com/pro…/nightsea/night-sea-debut-ep

***If anyone was inclined to go over there right now and simply cover the remaining $3000-ish of this project, then I would be inclined to meet that person at the Night Sea releaseparty with a bottle of home-brew, a homemade Picaken, a custom Knives t-shirt, and a rare show of affection in the form of a two-armed, full-frontal HUG. I swear, THAT is how bad I want this record to happen.***

Let us Pray.

Mon, 03/09/2015 - 22:34
Ok. I know I have this whole missionary thing going on, and I'm married to a pastor, and I sincerely love Jesus, but, despite all that, somehow I found myself living a life without prayer. I mean, I still pray occasionally, like before dinner when we have company, but lately it hasn't been often, and it hasn't been very sincere.
I used to pray earnestly, with a deep sense of longing and appreciation to a God I thought listened. I used to pray daily, habitually, one might even say religiously, as an act of obedient worship and supplication to a God I thought cared. I used to pray intentionally, with a heart full of gratitude and wonder for a God I thought loved me.
I used to pray.
I used to pray and listen, listen and pray. I used to hear God, and He used to hear me, because I used to think prayer mattered, and that maybe when I prayed it actually made a difference in the world. Like many of the things that used to define and direct my faith, I used to think prayer was important to my spiritual formation. And like many of the things that used to define and direct my faith, eventually I started to question its value.
As I questioned and wondered and prodded for understanding, my prayer life went from being a rich, meaningful experience to a tool I use to fight insomnia. Prayer became the kind of mindless activity that is so boring and un-engaging, it practically induces a coma. Like counting sheep, or taking slow breaths -- if I can't sleep, I pray.
Initially, I was turned off by seeing so many flippant promises of prayer from people I knew wouldn't actually follow though. And by “people” I mean me. I used to do this all the time. Requests would be uttered, needs would be shared, sad stories were told, and I promised I would pray for them, but I rarely made good on my commitment. I almost never actually prayed for people after I told them I would. For me, “I'll pray for you” became like the Christian equivalent of “Take care.” It was simply a means for me to end a conversation with another person and walk away from them without assuming any personal responsibility for their future. Or their needs. Or their pain.
It was like a spiritual easy out.

Once I realize I was doing it, I knew something had to change. But instead of deciding to be a decent human being pray for people when I said I would, I just decided to stop saying “I'll pray for you.” Problem solved. ... And then? Because I'm an embarrassment to society and my brain doesn't know how to control my mouth, sometimes I would not only notsay “I'll pray for you”, but I would go so far as to replace it with something else. Something worse. Something like,“I'm not going to tell you 'I'll pray for you' because I probably won't, but sorry for your loss.” Or “...but I think you'll do great on your test.” Or “....but cancer totally sucks. I hope you live.”
Because that's SO MUCH BETTER. Right? ….*sigh*... Ugh! I'm a douche, you guys.
The downfall of my prayer life didn't end there, because then I started to feel weird about the things I prayed about. I was told to bring all my cares to God, no matter how trivial or small, because He wants to hear all of it. Right? But it felt weird to pray to God for a sunny vacation and, also? War and famine and orphans. It felt wrong to ask God to #Bless me in my fluffy suburban life, while I was acutely aware of the greater suffering of others. I thought it was kind of icky to call for God's favor over t-ball games and car repairs and vet bills.... and, oh yeah, my friend whose husband is dying in hospice.
So my downward prayer spiral continued.
I didn't like the way Christians like to congratulate ourselves for "answered prayers” when we get what we want, but quickly shrug off things that don't go our way as “God's will”. The more I thought about it, the more I had a hard time believing that, first, we could somehow bend God's favor for our own benefit, and second that “His perfect will” included things like advanced leukemia, and starving babies, and dead Mama's, and, you know, like, crimes against humanity and stuff.
It's just that I happen to think super shitty things aren't God's will.
I think bad things happen because we live in a broken place filled with messed up people who have terrible ideas, and because the Earth is covered in all kinds of other unpredictable living things, and also because weather. I could be wrong, but I think “God's perfect will” for the mess we call life is that we would love and be loved by Him, but also that you and I would love one another through the inevitable pain and turmoil and tragedy that comes with living in this beautiful, dynamic, damaged world.
So that became kind of a problem, too, because if you believe in God's will, but you also believe in Shit Happens, how then should you pray?
Or I guess maybe the real question is: Why should you pray?
I've seriously struggled with this question for like ever. Why pray? IfI don't see God as a cosmic wish granter whose magical genie powers can be conjured by the fervent prayers of men, then why should I bother to pray at all?
But, as much as I've managed to cheapen it over the years, I've never been able to fully shed prayer as a core value. For a while, it's just been sort of lingering in the background of my Faith, hoping to be picked up, longing to be embraced once again. More recently, though, I've dusted off the practice of prayer by actively, intentionally entering into conversations with God – and not as a sleep aid. I still can't say I understand it, I still have no idea how it works, but I think I can honestly say I've returned to prayer.
Over the past few months, I've had good reasons to pray - not for myself, but for others – through grief and heartache, through loss and through gain, and through celebration, through ups and downs and a bunch of WTF's, through gratitude and grace, through life and through death... I prayed for them. No, actually? I prayed with them...
And that's when I remembered why we pray.

We pray because the God who knows us and sees us also connectsus.
When we pray for one another, we are acknowledging that we are connected, not just to God, but to each other. Your pain matters, not just to God, but to me. Your joy is delightful, not just to God, but to me. The suffering of this broken world must be addressed, not just by God, but by me.
When Jesus shows us how to pray, He draws us into community, first with God, and then with each other:Our Father who art in heaven,hallowed be thy name.Thy kingdom come.Thy will be doneon earth as it is in heaven.Give us this day our daily bread,and forgive us our trespasses,as we forgive those who trespass against us,and lead us not into temptation,but deliver us from evil.
My Father, who art in Heaven...Give me this day my daily bread...Forgive me?Lead me?Deliver me?
Nope. Sorry. We're all in this together.
Among other things, prayer is an amazing reminder that through God we are all connected; He is with you, I tell you that all the time... but what if he also made me to be with you? So that you, Beloved of the Lord, know you are never alone. 
I think I had part of it right in the beginning; God does listen. God hears, God cares, God loves, and though I can't explain it, I believe God responds to our prayers. But what I didn't get was that to pray for another person is the opposite of taking an easy spiritual out. Whether they live down the hall, or across the street, or on the other side of the world, whether they are our friend or our enemy, when we pray for others, we should probably be open to the possibility that God's love, His justice, His grace, His mercy may need to flow through us in other, more tangible, ways. You know what I mean? Like, maybe God's perfect will is that we LOVE ONE ANOTHER,for real, because life is hard and the world is screwed up and while we may know we need God... God knows we also need each other.
God IS, and shit happens, and prayer works - That's where I'm at. I understand how prayer brings you and me and God close about as well as I understand how I'm wirelessly connected to you right now through internet-magic. But I'm pretty sure that all of Creation is woven together in a tangled web of community, fully united by God, because we were never meant to be alone.
So let us honor our Father together. Let us work hand in hand to usher in the kingdom of Heaven on Earth. Let us pass our daily bread to one another. Let us forgive together. Let us hold each other up to receive forgiveness. Let us walk side by side as we seek paths of righteousness and encourage one another in our victories.
Let us pray.


 Can I pray for you? Or, better yet, with you? …. No. I mean it this time!

A Missionary's Position on 50 Shades of Grey

Thu, 02/19/2015 - 19:19
For the record, yes, I read the book and, yes, I watched the movie. And before we get into my review of them both, I want to offer you this tidbit of advice from the bottom of my crooked little heart -- For the love of God, if you haven't already subjected yourself to either of these atrocities, spare yourself
If you haven't seen or read 50 Shades of Grey and you're not really sure what the fuss is about, perhaps because you were lucky enough to be stranded on a desert island for the past year or so, I wrote a brief summary, just for you -- Read it HERE, and come back -- We'll wait...
Ok? Ok. Let's do this.
First? The story in 50 Shades of Grey only “works” because Christian Grey is a hard-bodied Adonis with an insanely awesome penthouse, sleek cars, loads of cash, and, oh, a helicopterIf he was an ugly dude who worked at a gas station, rode a dirt bike, and invited a cute girl into a “play room” full of torture devices in the back of his doublewide trailer, we would all be disgusted.
It's true and you know it. 
Take away the male hotness and the buckets of money and suddenly 50 Shades of Grey is a book about an insecure, young woman who meets a controlling, manipulative stalker, and finds herself in a mess of her own conflicting emotions. She enjoys being the object of his desire, but she's also intimidated by his demeanor. She's not comfortable with the things he's asking her to do, but he's only asking because she's “special” and he wants to share special moments with her. He smothers her, but only because he wants to protect her. And he punishes her, but only for her own good. She knows he's not perfect, but surely, if she sticks with him long enough, he'll change. She's freaked out by the demands she must meet to be in a relationship with this guy, but how else can she show him how much she really loves him?
No one wants to read that book, no matter how hot the sex is, because THATis not a love story. 
We all know someone who islivingthat story and we do not envy her
Most of us have watched painfully from the sidelines as a friend ignored serious red flags in favor of relationship - Any relationship! Even a super unhealthy one.
So why are we eating this stuff up? Do we really likethe story of Anastasia Steele and Christian Grey? Are our ideas of love and romance really this broken? Or are we just choosing to ignore the oogy parts because we enjoy a raunchy novel every now and again?
Honestly? I would rather believe this stupid book blew up the way it did because it gave everybody and their sister a lady-boner, than because we are so dumb we can't see 50 Shades of Bullshit when it's right in front of our faces. The real life story of 50 Shades goes like this: Christian Grey needs a therapist and Anastasia Steele needs to grow a pair. 
Sorry, friends. That is just not a good story.
But it is a relatable one.
I mean, maybe there's a little bit of Anastasia Steele in all of us.
I am drawn to characters like hers, I will admit, probably because I've spent a lot of my life feeling awkward, and clumsy, and ordinary, and little bit invisible -- and I'm not gonna lie, it's kind of nice to think that someone might see something special or valuable or good in me that I can't see in myself. And, like her, I've had my insecurities used against me by people who wanted to dominate me in some fashion, even people I loved. And I, too, have walked paths created by the insecurity of others, thinking, “If I just walk with him far enough, it will help him.”
Maybe it's not actually the dashing billionaire, Christian Grey, we fell in love with one poorly written page at a time, but plain old Ana. Sweet Ana, finally picked first over her cooler, richer, hotter best friend, finally learning how lovely she is, finally knowing she is desirable, and - most of all – finally feeling worthy.
I mean, that still doesn't explain why so many people endured this terrible, awful, painfully bad book. Seriously, why God, WHYYYYY???... It has to bebecause it gives us the sexy-feel-goods. That's the only reasonable explanation. This dictionary disaster of a book can only have become SO STINKIN' POPULAR because, ladies, when we read about sex, it makes us feel sexy. It makes us want to have sex. And we really like sex! Can I get a AMEN?! Like, can we all please just admit that's true? Say it with me now, “50 Shades of Grey makes us horny!”
We like reading about sex. There. It's said. 

Of course, it helped that the type of sex depicted in 50 Shades tested our imaginary sexual boundaries – that certainly made it a more interesting read. But I think Christian Grey's fetish could have been just about anything and, as long as the sex scenes were sufficiently steamy, we would have been ok with it. He could have demanded his woman be slathered in bacon grease, or that she put on a dinosaur costume and wait for him bent over a rocking chair. He could have asked Anastasia to wear a fake mustache while he gave her hickeys with a vacuum cleaner, and we probably would have kept reading. Because whatever. There's nothing wrong with liking weird things in bed. If you are in a healthy, committed, monogamous relationship (admittedly, I'd prefer the word marriage here, but, y'know...), and you've put in the time, effort, and emotion to get to a place where it's safe for both of you to try new things and maybe even explore your limits together, I say go for it. Your bedroom is your business. Go crazy.
The problem with this book is not that it's about rough sex or BDSM or bedroom fetishes, it's that if we want to enter into that kind of space with another human being, we should probably try to get there through mutual trust and relational intimacy.Not in a written contract. Not on a first date. And not under threat of rejection. 
There isbullying and abuse in 50 Shades of Grey, but I don't really think it happens in the bedroom. It happens when a rich, powerful, good-looking man exerts his money, power, and good looks to get his way without the permission of the woman he wants to bone. (One example: He takes her beloved, crappy, old car and sells it without her knowledge, replacing it with an expensive new one. Surprise! We're supposed to think this is romantic, but really, it's just bullshit.) Quite frankly, the only way 50 Shades of Grey could have gotten so big is that we consciously chose to ignore the icky underlying message of the story - that a woman should feel grateful to oblige a demanding, controlling, severely broken man if he's hot and rich - because we were too busy enjoying the sexy parts. 
Right?! I mean, that has to be it! Otherwise, I DO NOT GET ITS MASS APPEAL. 
Whether or not we should be using romance novels as sexual stimulants is gonna have to be a whole other conversation. But the fact of the matter is that most women do get turned on by lit-porn – and not just by the explicit, overly-detailed, frenetically paced descriptions of impassioned sexual encounters, but also by the enduring fantasy of being seenand wanted. That's what most of us are seeking in our own relationships, isn't it? To be truly vulnerable and deeply loved anyway
That might be the only redeeming piece of this stupid, fucked up story - that what it all boils to in the end is that all of us, women and men, alike -- all the Anastasia Steeles and Christian Greys of the world -- we all share in one great fear and one great need; to be known
We are all longing for someone we perceive as valuable to look at us and say, “I see something amazing in you and I find it irresistible.”
It's almost as if we were Created to be loved and cherished, and we're all dying to find our worth... but if the 50 Shades of Grey phenomenon is any indication, we're looking for it in all the wrong places.


Thu, 02/19/2015 - 19:19
The story got everyone talking and the sex scenes got everyone tingling, and then, to the horror of English lit majors and book publishers everywhere, E.L. James lusty novel, 50 Shades of Grey, spread across the nation like a literary strain of herpes.
I read the whole book. I sat through the whole movie. I survived the 50 Shades of Grey phenomenon and lived to tell about it... So that's what I'm doing.
I don't even want to talk about how truly, exceptionally, remarkably bad the writing is, so I'll only say this; The writing is the worst! At this point, it's pretty much universally accepted that 50 Shades of Grey does not owe its popularity to prose. If you need an example of why, google it. Or you can just trust me when I say that, as far as books go, this is a really shitty one.
For those who are completely unfamiliar with 50 Shades of Grey, perhaps because you're lucky enough to have been in a coma or lost in the woods for the past year or so, the story goes like this:
Anastasia Steele is a socially awkward, clumsy, nerd-virgin who has no idea how super-duper hot she is under her frumpy cardigan sweater and messy ponytail. But when Christian Grey (the youngest, hottest billionaire in all the land) meets her, he instantly sees her naughty sex-kitten potential, and then she bites her lip and it's all over - he's smitten. He must have her! And by “have” I mean “own”. So he buys her.Sort of.
Anastasia is smart and educated, and she isn't really sure she wants to be bought, so whenever he spends tons of money on her she tells herself that she will give his extravagant gifts back eventually. That way it's more like a loan, or a rental agreement, and she feels much better about receiving costly gifts of books and clothes and computers and cars. SHE'S NOT GOING TO KEEP THEM, YOU GUYS. Anastasia Steel is a strong, independent woman and she will not be bought! So there.
Then there's this boring part where Christian starts to feel bad because he knows what he wants to do to Ana (which is tie her up and flog her) and so he pushes Anna away because he doesn't want to hurt her. I mean, he does, but he's a gentleman. He wants to take care of her. So for a minute he just, y'know, watches her and looks after her and protects her and stuff. Like a big stalkerbrother.
Some more things happen, I don't remember what, until finally Christian Grey is so deeply attracted to this unusual girl, so utterly enthralled by her natural beauty, so taken by her charm, SO TOTALLY TURNED ON BY THIS LIP BITING MINX HE CANNOT WAIT ANOTHER MINUTE TO BE WITH HER...so he has his lawyer draw up a non-disclosure for her to sign and return. Which she does.
So now they're like almostin a relationship. SQUEEEEE!!!
But wait! Christian has more paperwork for her to sign before he can “date” her, because romance. And also because it turns out this gorgeous, wealthy, hunk of man-candy comes with a liiiiiitle bit of baggage she needs to know about. He reveals his secret fetish to Anastasia by showing her his “play room” full of whips and chains and sex contraptions, and he explains that he likes women who like it rough. The rougher the better - but only as long as everyone is having a good time.
Cool? Cool.
But wait! Anastasia has a little secret of her own. Because, even though they've known each other for like two whole weeks, she's failed to mention that she's still a virgin. So when Christian tries to talk to her about sex and stuff, she bites her lip and admits that she's never, y' know, done itbefore. *womp womp* But Christian really likes this girl, so he's not about to let the inconvenience of an intact hymen get in the way of the possibility of their future mutually agreed upon relationship terms. So, like a true gentleman, he takes care of business, and Ana's first time is a festival of orgasms.
In fact, her very first sexual experience is so awesome - and not at all awkward or fumbly or goopy – she is like, “WAIT. IS THAT WHAT SEX IS LIKE?!?! I WANT MORE!!! GIMME GIMME GIMME!!!”
And he's like “Whoa girl, there's more where that came from. All you have to do is sign on the dotted line.”
By this time, you've got the idea that Christian Gray has some kind of weird sexual preferences, but he is pleasantly surprised by how much he liked having non-weird sex with Anastasia, just this once. He thinks her potential for weird sex is so great, he practically gets down on one knee to ask her to be his submissive sex partner. He tells her how he wants to dominate her in his play room, and he gives Anastasia a big, fat contract and a brand new laptop and tells her to do some research into the whole dominant/submissive thing. Which she does, cause she's cool like that.
At this point Ana is starting to think she mightbe seeing some red flags, like,everywhere. But Christian is super hot. And super rich. So she decides to think about it. While she thinks about it, they are cute with each other via email and text.
He is just dying for her to say yes to his proposal, and when it's time for her to make the big decision, she's basically like, “Alright, fine, I'll be your submissive. But no fisting.” And Christian decides he can live without fisting, so it's all good. UGH, SO ROMANTIC!So she signs a contract agreeing that he can tell her what to eat, what to wear, how often to exercise, and when and where to sleep. Among other things, she also agrees not to touch him or look him in the eye during sex and not to disobey him in any way. Plus, she agrees to being spanked as a form of punishment if she breaks any of his rules. Oh! And she agrees to wait for him naked, on her knees, head down, with her hair in a braid whenever she is beckoned to the boom-boom play room.
At first, she's kinda freaked out. But then she gets spanked for rolling her eyes and afterward Christian rubs her butt with lotion, and he is so sweet and tender toward her sore, beaten ass, she can't help but swoon a little. In the playroom, some whipping and flogging happens, but he is mostly gentle and kind as he grooms her to be more to his liking. They take it slow and much to her surprise, Anastasia finds out she's kind of into it. Like, it actually feels kinda good.
Many more orgasms occur. So many that you start to think Christian Grey is just a show off. 
Wait. What?!Between orgasms we learn things about this mysterious, bondage loving, philanthropist. Dark things. Things that make us go, “OOoooOOhhh, that makes sense!”
We find out the smokin' hot, gazillionaire was a crack-baby, tortured and starved in early childhood, rescued by rich people after he is severely traumatized by his birth mother's gruesome death, then sexually abused as a teenager by his adoptive Mom's BFF, who he swears is not a child molester, just a “really good friend”.
Naturally, Anastasia is like, “Oh my!” And she needs a little space to process all that's happened, so she flies out to visit her Mom on the East Coast and take a little break. Like 5 minutes later, Christian shows up. Because he cares about her! NOT because he is obsessed, or controlling, or creepy. IT'S ROMANTIC, YOU GUYS! The whole time, Anastasia is confused by her feelings, because she doesn't really like being stalked and controlled, and she can plainly see that this guy is like super fucked up, but she loves himand she wants to help him get better and she thinks that maybe if she just hangs in there, eventually he might let her touch him during sex. Or make eye contact.
Love is SO confusing!
Am I hot, or am I a dork?!
I DON'T EVEN KNOW ANY MORE!!!All these big feelings make her bite her lip. A lot.
When they get back to his rich people apartment, something I can't remember happens, and they get into a heated argument and Anastasia tells Christian to spank her as hard as he wants, so he does, and afterward he tries to rub some lotion on her butt to help her feel better, but she will not have it. Girl is PISSED. Then she's all, ''I don't think I can do this.” And she gives him all his expensive gifts back (thereby ending her unwritten rental agreement) and she leaves.
She never wants to see Christian Grey again! But, also, she wants to marry him. She wants to slap him! But she also wants to kiss him. She definitely doesn't want him to slap her with anything ever again! Except maybe a little. Mostly, she just wants to forget she ever met him... and slept with him... and let him strip her, tie her to a bed, and drool champagne into her mouth, baby-bird style. (Because that happened.)
The end.

Good grief. 
I have so many thoughts about 50 Shades of Grey, I don't even know where to begin...  

Not exactly "Newsworthy", but here we are...

Tue, 02/10/2015 - 15:31
I keep hearing that podcasts are the new blog, so I guess it's a good thing Luke Norsworthy was kind enough to have me on his podcast, Newsworthy with Norsworthy.  
You should not listen to it. I promise. Instead, you should go over to Luke's site and pick out a different interview, like this one with Donald Miller, or maybe this one with NT Wright, or definitely this one with Barbara Brown Taylor, and then listen to that. You will thank me. 
But if you do insist on listening to my interview, please accept my sincere apology in advance for the following: 
~ the overuse of the word "like". ~ that thing I said about Camaros~ threatening to strangle an old lady~ stretching "shit" into a 4 syllable word~ the vagina story (Really, I am so, so, so, sorry about this. SO sorry.)
There. I have apologized and you have been warned. Do not write me an angry email.
Ok. Here you go...

...go listen to one of these actual newsworthy people. Seriously. 

Have I mentioned I'm sorry?...