September 23, 2008

ACU Summit/My Sister's Blog

Very early Tuesday morning. Yesterday was a great day, I spent the day at the ACU Summit. Every class I went to was rich in content and heart. First I started with Sexy Sacrifices: Have we laid our children on the altar of commercial culture? Below is the video they started off with. It has some graphic stuff in it, but this is what we see in a normal day on television, magazines, walking down the street or through the mall with our kids. These images are what our children are defining themselves by. One thing that really stuck with me was that as adults we have other points of reference and life experiences to see this in the context that it belongs, but our children who have grown up with this around them have no points of reference other than this, this is the eye glass they view themselves and others with. Our job as parents and faith community will be to help them see their self worth and value through the lens of God and not through the lens of commercial culture. Our kids are being bombarded with adult like clothing, adult like spa experiences, adult like cell phone usage, adult like television privileges, cable, movies, we allow them freedoms to act like adults, then are baffled why these younger generations are moving into sex more easily out of marriage and at very young ages. The industry of marketing to kids uses a term called compression, if they can draw younger kids into more adult purchases they will be consumers of their products for a longer time, our kids are pawns to industry. Yesterday was the information day, today is what we can do about it in our kids lives to help them find their worth in them selves and not in comparison to an ad in a magazine that isn't real in the first place. I am ready to hear some great information this morning.

Then I went to a class on hospitality which was very thought provoking, we think of having people over for dinner more than likely when we hear the word hospitality, that is not all it includes.

Then the main speaker in Moody at 11am spoke some very uncomfortable truths on judgementalism.

Lastly, Rick Atchley spoke on the Lifestyles of the Rich and Amos. Out of the book of Amos he speaks to how God does not condone favortism. He has 2 more classes and said that the best was yet to come.

Today I will probably go to the Missions in Photography in the morning as yesterday's hospitality class was a one day offering, but the rest of the classes will be the same. There are hundreds of classes to choose from, in the Rick Atchley time slot there is also Rubel Shelley and Jeff Walling to choose from, now that's just not fair!
Yesterday's topic was not an easy one to write, nor was it one that I had ever thought to write about in any detail. I had an entire post above the story of my dad that I had written then all the rest of it just flowed out. I deleted what I had written on the more general topic of mourning above it because my heart was in what I had written on my father and I felt like that was where God was calling me to let my pen rest for the day. My sister Becky had read my post and then had something to say about it, she writes on a private blog so I can't link it, but she said it was o.k. to post here what she had written.

DAD, by my sister Becky.

I don't know exactly where this post is going to go I just feel the need to get it out. I just read my sisters blog and she was talking about my dad. She is 5 years older than I am and so her world in which she grew up with my father was a different world than I did. My parents divorced while I was in seventh grade. They divorced when she was finishing high school. I then moved to Australia with my mom and younger sister and brother days after finishing ninth grade. I flew back for six months when I was seventeen and I stayed with him and his girlfriend at that time. I had forgotten how his drinking had such a big impact on everyone around him but he was still my wonderful dad. There were two sides to my dad. One was the one that I loved dearly when he was sober. The other was a drunk man who we had to parent. I hated that man for taking away my father from me. I guess deep down I still do. My sister and I had a very different relationship with both of our parents. We are very different people. She is the oldest and therefore I am sure she lived through and had different experiences than I did. I hurt for my dad still. I didn't spend enough time with him because I could not stand to be with him when he was drinking. He would also promise to do things and would not do it. I remember being very proud of him for doing things that parents should do. Such as remembering to do the irrigation when we lived out in the country. He would have to get up at 2 or 3 am and wait for an hour then close it off again. I thought that was so great that he did that. On my honeymoon we visited a used book store and I found a book called something like Adult Children of Alcoholics. I bought it and read through it. I thought all my life that it did not really bother me or effect me. It had. My years of rebellion were proof of that. I love my father very much and think of him often. Growing up and even in my adult years every time I would talk to him on the phone I would break down crying. I do not know why I did that even to this day. My little sister said she would do the same thing. So basically I loved my father and still do even through all his many short comings. I miss him.
Thanks Becky for allowing me to post what you wrote. Your words are touching and powerful and speak to the multiplicity of being raised in an environment that was full of love, confusion, disappointment, lies, tears, instability, all those happening in any given day and on most days. Some times only our tears could be our expression. I love you.


not-so-deep Denise said...

I want to share what Becky wrote w/all my Bigs just to let them know how kids are feeling.

I love you but you always disappoint me.

SaraMelene said...

Thanks to you and your sister for sharing such a personal story. I have no doubt it can help many others.

Off the topic, I saw your recipe at Lysa's blog earlier today and made them for dinner tonight. Still waiting for my husband to get home but shhhh, I already ate one and they are yummy! Thanks so much!