fresh hate
Just Jesus

Fresh Hate and Jesus Fish

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I am getting some “fresh hate.”

For the most part, it rolls off me.  I am not a mean person. I love Jesus.  We are tight.  But I don’t like to shove Him down people’s throats.  And I certainly never want to misrepresent Him.

So my mom was in a car accident.  It was pretty bad.  And I thank God she is okay. But in the midst of the car wreck, our community laid to rest an 11-year-old-boy who fought a courageous battle against cancer. He was a friend of my daughter. I thank God his suffering is over. But it is in these moments where I see Christians making the most atrocious mistakes. I blame the internet.

Anyone can say anything, and it gets stacked end to end on social media.”OMG – I  just had the best latte!” is right above, “Please pray for my baby’s cancer to be healed” and below that is, “Click like if Jesus saves.” and below that is a video of my neighbor’s cat watching a squirrel steal a potato out of the trash. I didn’t post “God spared my mom’s life in the car accident” for fear it would be among posts where a life wasn’t spared… What about those posts? Statements that are meant to bring glory but hurt or confuse. And maybe this is where the rubber meets the road.

Maybe this is our time to shine… by not saying what we’ve grown accustomed to saying.  

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At the school down the road, I see a supped up suburban every morning. Across the front of the car is a custom paint job that says “BIG MAMA IS A BITCH!” in pink.  And while I wish my children hadn’t seen this they have seen worse.  Like the Lexus in line at our school with a Jesus Fish and a bumper sticker that says “In case of rapture this car will be unoccupied.”  I unwittingly cut off this high-rolling luxury auto, and the driver flipped me off and screamed the F word at me.

“TOP OF THE MORNING TO YOU TOO SUNSHINE!!!!” I bellowed.

At this point in my walk with Jesus, I got rid of my Jesus fish.  I had pried it off and ruined the paint job more than once before, but I am committed to not decorating with the Jesus fish anymore.  Furthermore, I am most interested in behaving as a follower of Jesus than just decorating with Him.  I don’t see Him as a lucky charm or an omen. I see Him as my Savior.

 

And sure, I am snarky, and yes, I called a kindergartener chubby but I am not Jesus. I am just a mom. And I love Jesus, but that doesn’t make me perfect. I boldly profess a love for Jesus and my distaste for seat savers and rule-breakers – and sometimes, I cuss, eat McDonald’s, and take my kids to counseling.

This is the trap we are forgetting as we post our bare butts on the wonder web and in bumper flare.

I am just a mom. And I love Jesus, but that doesn't make me perfect. I boldly profess a love for Jesus and my distaste for seat savers and rule-breakers - and sometimes, I cuss, eat McDonald's, and take my kids to… Click To Tweet

If we profess Christianity a lot of non-believers believe we think we are perfect. They have fallen for the lie that we give a rat’s hiney what is on our Starbucks cup!  Let me be clear, they could put 666 on their coffee cups. We might not like it, but we would still drink it.  Why?  Because we are normal, coffee drinking, Jesus fish bumpered, flipping you off HUMANS.

Jesus died for our sins so that we might live life abundantly – that we might love and have a chance at a better way.  But it did not perfect us in the drop offline line at 7:40 am when you are driving a pre-menstrual 13-year-old to school. And He moves the way He moves and saves the way He saves and we cannot understand that, but we come across like we have all the answers.

The fallacy is perpetuated by us.

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We rant and we rave and then we put huge numbers up for Donald Trump and then rant and rave some more. Furthermore, we are divided by religiosity, arrogance, tolerance, patience, and coffee cups. AGAIN let me make one thing very clear to every non-believer who might glance this way: THE CEO OF STARBUCKS IS A GENIUS.  I propose he singlehandedly drops these little memes about Christians hating the anti-Christmas cup and you fall for it every time!!!  We. Don’t. Care.

From way over here in the right field we are barely getting by.  We need our coffee and we need our Jesus. A good portion of us are wallowing in our wretchedness and can’t fathom life on this planet much longer.

I have this horrible voice in my head that perpetually torments me.  When I am too tired to get up and give another bottle to an orphaned baby or don’t want to sleep on the bottom bunk that has plastic peed on sheets I hear a voice that says, “You promised.”  Usually, it is a child’s voice. It is a voice that mocks my failures as a mom and a foster mom.

I promised to do good – to be good and to be kind.  And when I am tired and haven’t slept in 24 years, sometimes I don’t want to.

When I have a bad morning, I glare mindlessly and drive braless-ly to school hating Jesus fished luxury cars and I covet Big Mama’s supped up suburban.  At least, she isn’t pretending to be something she is not: PERFECT. And at least, she isn’t misrepresenting the Savior of the world.  I mean, at least, she isn’t afraid of what people think.

So this rant is brought to you by the creepy voices in my head, a hateful email about my wayward Christian blog, the notorious Big Mama, and no sleep. My news feed is filled with the grieving, the tired, the hilarious, the confused, and the mislead… I join them in the pursuit of peace and real Jesus. I never promised to be a leader, and I pray I never made you think I was perfect. And if you don’t share this or like it – literally nothing good or bad will happen to you.

That much I can promise.

Careful what you say, watch what you preach, be even more careful what you post on Facebook and your bumper, drink your coffee, ignore the cup, just keep swimming… it is well.

It happened that when He went into the house of one of the leaders of the Pharisees on the Sabbath to eat bread, they were watching Him closely. “Luke 14:1

May your floors be sticky and your calling ordained.  Love, Jami

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54 Comments

  1. This year’s motto is “just keep swimming” (I imagine Jesus as my floaties), last year’s was “onward and upward, don’t let the critics get you down” (except in my head I used a non-PG word instead of ‘critics’. After the kids were in bed and I’d had a glass of wine I used it outside my head too – 2014/2015 had some challenging people in it)

    Friends of mine have these beautiful mottos and meditations like “hope” and “Be Still” but at 6am when the sun creeps in the window and I am holding my medically fragile 4 year old suctioning snot out of her stomach through her feeding tube, knowing that my other 6 kids will start stirring in about two hours and I haven’t got to bed yet – Jesus sends me a slightly manic blue animated fish and Jesus floaties.

    And on the days when I am so tired, mind, body and soul tired, and I’m fighting to keep my kid out of hospital so I can be home for my other kid’s birthday. And I hide so I can cry big, hiccoughing, snotty tears because my kid is hurting and can’t tell me where and I can’t make it stop and it hurts all my other kids, and my husband and it hurts ME damnit. And there will be days like this until she is miraculously healed, dies or Jesus comes which flipping blows chunks because I’m already too old for this at 35. And the “surprise” adorable two year old paints herself with her hormonal preteen sister’s make up because she’s 2 and the hormonal pre-teen wildly sobs for an hour because she’s a hormonal pre-teen. And I get an angry email from an older female relative berating me for everything from my family size, educational choices for the children, imagined personal budgeting decisions and fashion sense. Those days I get real with God, and he gets real with me…..and I pour an extra glass of wine, He whispers “I’m still here” and I whisper “Just keep swimming, onward and upward, don’t let the f***ers get you down” and he still loves me, and couldn’t give a fig that I use the F word sometimes, drink several glasses of wine a week and begin sentences with conjunctions.

    That’s the Jesus I know, I think we have a mutual frend.

    1. jami_amerine says:

      ❤️

      1. God bless you, Mama.

  2. I just love you Jami. Enough said.

    1. jami_amerine says:

      I
      Love you back

  3. Best advice. Ever. I, too, love you, Jami!

  4. Julie Hensley says:

    Amen amen amen!!!

  5. Oh Jami you have a beautiful gift! Thank you for putting to paper all the things that have crossed our minds. This was fabulous!

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Love you!

  6. Dawnette says:

    Thank you <3

  7. Nadine says:

    Thank you for perfectly describing every Jesus loving mom with good intentions but whose ‘human’ shows sometimes. Rock on, sister.

  8. Glenna McKelvie says:

    Me and Jesus down by the schoolyard…

  9. Wait – this is one of those wayward Christian blogs?! I’m so glad to know that now – all that talk of grace, hard love and taking care of orphans totally had me duped….(sarcasm font)

    Please keep writing just the way you do – I kind of do a little happy dance in my head when a new post shows up in my feed!! 🙂

    1. jami_amerine says:

      ❤️

  10. Will you be my BFF?

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Yes.

  11. Kristy says:

    God bless every little piece of your heart!! Your words are blessings!! Keep it real!!

  12. Pamela says:

    Dear Jami,
    I love you. I love you from the bottom of my crappy imperfect heart. I love you as I sit here in an orthodontist office crying from reading your post on my smart phone.
    I love you when I read your posts and they bail me out of my misery and lift me up at least for a moment from feeling sorry for myself.
    Please please please please please please!!!!!!!!!! Realize you are such a blessing. Know your words–your journey–and the sharing of it!!!!— matter. It matters in a huge way.
    If I could send you hugs and Starbucks and SLEEP! Please know I would. I would do it in a heartbeat as thanks for all the times your words have healed me. Your words have saved me from my own selfish pitty party. You have given Grace and given me back my faith when it went missing in the mess of my house, and my life.
    For the love of God sister–let the haters hate and keep being you. Because I love your blog and I love you and I’m praying for you as the tears run down my face in the lobby of the ORTHO office while strangers watch my mascara run.

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Oh my. I adore you. ❤️ this is too kind.

  13. So – funny, inspiring, real. Love you.

  14. Judy Pfluger says:

    Wow…what a gift you have!! Haters gonna hate and nothing you can do about it. You are real..I have thought and done so much of the same and mentally beat myself up for it. But, I know Jesus loves me thru it…thankfully we don’t have to be petfect.. just love Him!! Thanks for being real!!!

  15. Shawna Mathis says:

    Well, this is further proof that we are meant to be friends. As someone who doesn’t care what people think, lemme be the first to congratulate you on pissing people off! It seems to happen no matter how hard we try. Might as well, do our best and live in grace! ❤️

  16. Evelin says:

    I love that you are real ! And u are definitely gifted ! Thanks so much for this post.
    Hate hypocrisy a s hate fake people.
    And love you !!!

    1. jami_amerine says:

      ❤️

  17. Shelly says:

    For the love…and thank you!!!! I’m in bed with the flu after driving over an hour to take my kid to dr appts this am, my gps didn’t match the street signs and we got lost, she got carsick,melted down, I’m crying because my head…Dear God…is in excruciating pain, tried to calm her down by getting a Mcd happy meal…IT WAS TOO EARLY FOR LUNCH!!! That’s my cue to give up to Jesus and hide under the covers!!! I. Can’t. Even…Be Blessed!!

    1. jami_amerine says:

      ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️ what’s up with all day breakfast and not all day happy meals???

  18. Charlotte says:

    Love this post, Jami! My kids always point about the Jesus Fish on a certain church in town, and then we talk about you and how wonderful you are….and how you introduced us to the term ‘Jesus Fish.’ Hahaha!

    1. jami_amerine says:

      ❤️

  19. Well said! Funny and thought provoking. Glad I found your post.

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Thank you. Welcome!

  20. “I am most interested in behaving as a follower of Jesus than just decorating with Him. I don’t see Him as a lucky charm or an omen.” Well said. Agreed, I think it makes Jesus seem like a sports team or something.

  21. I can’t even express how much I love this post, and SO many others I have been reading since I found you. Girl, I think I’m in love with you. Crushing in a BIG WAY. YOU are AMAZING. I just want you to know that your voice is EXACTLY what this world needs.

    You’re a gift. I cannot wait to read more… And smile, and sigh, and laugh my butt off, and nod and pray and belt out an ‘AMEN!!’ regularly.

    You now have a new stalker- I mean follower. 😉

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Loving you back!!!

  22. […] Fresh Hate and Jesus Fish […]

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  25. Katherine says:

    You have such a way of stating what we are all thinking and making us laugh in the midst of it. I appreciate your painful honesty that so many people don’t get. Keep on swimming!!!!!!!

  26. […] A slave to my disability, a word aptly spoken is a word better than one read. […]

  27. Amen, Sister. Thank you for saying this 🙂

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  32. Marsha says:

    I love 1 Peter 2:13–> knowing it includes speeding and stop (not pause) sign laws and neighbors violating the no pets in the park ordinances… and yet I drive in excess of 80 miles per hour in a not even remotely close MPH zone, just to get to my job -not the hospital, but WORK, a four letter word for what I don’t like even on payday. And I think other four letter words if someone slows my insanity. And one of my bumper stickers says, I ❤️ My Marine, and the other has the Marine symbol, Semper Fidelis, then quotes Psalm 144:1 Blessed be the Lord, my Rock, who trains my hands for war, and my fingers for battle. They are especially ready for battle at 5:30am before I have sipped my French pressed organic coffee with chocolate chips driving like a crazy human on the way to WORK
    And I love you, your writing, your vandals, et al, madly also

    1. jami_amerine says:

      ❤️

  33. Victoria Shoemaker says:

    Jami
    You keep me so real. Bless your little pea picking heart❤️

  34. Jennifer says:

    I know we’d be BFFs if we met.
    You put into words how I feel!
    I often wonder why Jesus loves this wretch, but I am grateful He does!
    Love your writing!!

    1. jami_amerine says:

      Thank you!

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