On turning 30: Prepare the ship

Getting older is such a riot. My 18-year old self thought 30 was basically kicking the bucket. Now, I’m literally turning the handle to open the door to my third decade of life and feeling like a tiny, tiny baby. 

To be honest, I have given my birthday zero thought. Zero. Maybe it’s the two under two thing or the work from home with the two under two because school apparently takes a month off and wants us all to lose our minds thing. But today, before I head out to an evening of surprise birthday festivities coordinated by my husband and nearest and dearest, I’m forcing myself to pause, reflect, appreciate the last few days of my twenties and what I pray is in store for my thirties. 

I’ve been using a new app during my morning workout called Pray as You Go. Huge thank you to Shannan Martin (who is not my real life friend but I totally stalk everything she writes and creates) for turning me on to this app. It has revolutionized the way I start my day. It gives you music, scripture and questions for meditation. Today’s scripture came from Luke 5: 1-11. It’s a familiar story for those who share my Christian faith, but let me paraphrase:

Men on a boat weren’t catching fish. 

Jesus says “Cast your nets over here.”

Said men basically roll their eyes and say, “Ok, well, we tried that but OK, Jesus.”

Boom! Nets are filling so fast they are breaking and the boat is sinking. 

I’m not well-versed on theology but I think that’s the gist. 

I’ve heard this story so many times but today I was struck by something new. (It’s amazing how the Bible works that way, isn’t it?)

Are my nets ready and is my ship prepared for God to fulfill his purpose for my life? Am I ready to assume the abundance of his blessings? Or, if he heaped those blessings on me right now, would my nets tear and my ship begin to sink because of a lack of preparation?

I don’t think the story is about this. It’s more about Peter and becoming fishers of men. But this nuance stopped me in my lunging tracks this morning. 

I’m a new idea a day. It’s how my brain works. Don’t ask me how many domain names I own because it’s embarrassing. I get a new idea, buy a domain name, sit on it and either do something or let it expire. It’s a great way to take a first step, give a little life to a new vision and see if it sticks. Most don’t. But I’ve been mulling over several big ideas, visions, dreams lately. And I don’t know what to do, what to start, what to let go of and what to save for another season. 

I don’t sit still well. Surprise! (No one is surprised.) Yet, here I am in a season of waiting. I’ve dubbed it a “holy procrastination” because I am certain I’m not supposed to do any one thing yet. 

My ship is not ready to launch; rather, now is the time for preparations, adjustments, acquiring knowledge. 

So what does all of this have to do with turning 30? I think I’m supposed to spend the first year of my thirties preparing for the next nine years of this decade, a decade I’m convinced will be my best yet. I know there are storms on the horizon but also sunrises and sunsets and the most glorious moments in between.

For now, I’m anchored and abiding in the harbor of God’s word, an intentional prayer life and the discipline of learning, seeking, asking.

Here are some of the places I go to learn, seek, ask. Maybe they will help you, too. 

A MUST LISTEN podcast for me is Manifest Collab, hosted by the talented Kari Sowers. It’s her interviews with the people I’ve never heard of that are so inspiring, furthering the idea that we are all meant to create something. The world needs us to create something. I love her motto: We all have something to teach; we all have something to learn.

Go now and sign up for Emily’s emails. She sends this weekly compilation email that I never delete. You read that right: in a world of one bazillion emails a day, I don’t delete hers. She puts together the best articles of the week and they are certain to fill your soul. 

I find myself retweeting Allison Fallon all. the. time. 

Surely you already know Claire. But if you don’t, she is a must follow for the best entrepreneurial tips and adorable pictures of her daughter. Her Work by Design summit was too perfect. 

Laurie and I went to college together. Her blog is an absolute delight. As a wannabe writer, I really love following her editing and book writing journeys. 

And I will leave the list right there because I just realized it is all women and I can definitely start my 30s with that fun fact.

 

One and Two

How old are my boys? One and two. 

One and two. 

One and Two. 

For two brief months, my boys are one and two years old. I know, it is as crazy wonderful as it sounds. It’s incredible how close in age they are but so vastly different. It’s even more incredible they both came from the same two parents, as they are so much the same, yet so vastly different. 

One gorilla crawls, a super fast scoot-style crawl; Two runs at full-steam at all times. 

One babbles and laughs and rarely cries; Two talks non-stop and makes jokes and throws fits of epic proportions. 

One gives open-mouth kisses; Two gives “the biggest smooch you ever had!” 

One is sneaky, using stealth-mode to sneak up and snatch toys; Two announces himself when he enters a room and has not been called “reserved” ever. 

One is quietly happy; Two is full-volume joyful. 

I could not be more grateful to be their mom, the mom to One and Two. 

I cannot tell you how often people assume, because of their close age, that I am overwhelmed and busy. I hear so often, “I don’t know how you do it,” or “I could never do that,” or “How DO you do it?”

I want to set the record straight: a mom with full hands is a mom with a full plate, yes, but it’s also a mom with a full heart. I’m not too busy. I’m not overwhelmed. Of course, I am these things at times, but a growing family does not equate a constant state of incomplete.  

An amazing thing happens as your family expands. Not only does your heart enlarge to fully and completely love the newest little, but your capacity to mother grows in tandem. I’m able to do more, be more than I ever imagined. It’s like a magic superpower, and it is glorious.

This expansion extends to every other avenue of your life. You find ways to maximize your work to create margin for your family. You dream new dreams and pursue new passions because your raising little people and you can do anything. YOU ARE LITERALLY RAISING TINY HUMANS. You are invincible. 

I’m filled to the brim with joy and love for these little people who have invaded my home. More than that, I’m eternally grateful to them for helping me find the best me.

One and Two. ONE AND TWO. Man, it is wild and it is beautiful. 

P.S. In the time it took me to draft this teeny, tiny post, I had to help Two in the bathroom, get One a snack, was forced to wear ear muffs while Two hammered and put One down for a nap. It’s not easy, friends, but it is worth it. 

P.S.S. Maybe you are completely exhausted, sweet momma. Maybe you do not feel on top of it. Maybe you are afraid to admit you just don’t like being a mom. I heard the wisest words lately from a dear friend: Don’t let one season define all of motherhood for you. Maybe toddlers aren't your jam but you will take my middle schoolers. Maybe you love infants; maybe teenagers make you want to hide in a closet with a bottle of wine. Whatever it is, don’t let this hard season define the totality of motherhood for you. You are enough. And a new season is right around the corner. 

When you’re too heavy to write, you write.

I’m sitting here, supposed to be writing the intro to a new blog series I’m rolling out this week in honor of being featured on the amazing Manifest Collab Podcast by Kari Sowers. The kids are in bed, the wine is poured, the husband is at work and the low hum of classical music is the perfect companion to this coveted quiet time. 

But I just can’t make the words form. I can’t make the ideas in my head translate to my fingers to type them on this screen. 

It isn’t writers block. I don’t really believe in it. I wake up each day with new words in my head and the process of transcribing is always just a few quiet minutes away. 

But tonight? I can’t. I’m too heavy. I feel myself flirting with tears too often these days as Twitter headlines ding my phone. More violence. More unrest. More hate. More more more. 

It feels like there is no good left. It feels like I should hunker down and hide my own and simply hover at neutral with no throttle to full speed because full speed renders me exposed, vulnerable, raw. 

But I simply cannot settle for relinquishing my dreams, my goals, my purpose at the feet of those who seek to kill, steal and destroy. 

Because if I don’t seek to do good, who will? Oh, this question is easy to answer: others will seek good. Others will do good. Others are doing good. 

But if I choose to stay quiet, stay away, stay home, I will not simply survive on the good of others. I need, I must, do good myself, for others, for me. 

In this season as a mom who works with two under two, my time is not my own. I do not have the time capacity to do good in person as I am used to doing. Rather, I have these quiet moments, around 10pm most nights, to write the words I feel put in my heart that may do a little good in this world. 

But what if I don’t write? What if I don’t give life to the truths that set me free? 

It’s a haunting question to ask, the idea that I may forgo my opportunity to offer the world my gifts. Odds are good nothing will change either way, whether I write or not. How’s that for humble pie?

But when you’re feeling too heavy, you write. You show up in whatever fashion is available to you in that moment. There is too much at stake to stay quiet, stay away, stay home. You join the fight. You look your brothers and sisters of all colors, all situations, all beliefs in the eye and you say “I’m here, too.”

Because, as the saying goes, the world needs people who have come alive.

The Loss of When

There’s this thing that has been grieving me lately, tearing at my heart and spirit, driving me crazy. In full disclosure, I’ve quite nearly lost it, fully-certifiable nutcase, about a dozen times since the birth of my second child. It’s not just sleep deprivation or the chaos of two under two. It’s deeper, more inherent to who I am and who I want to be. 

It’s not a matter of if I shower, but when. 

It’s not a matter of if I eat, but when. 

It’s not a matter of if I sleep, but when. 

It’s not a matter of if I work, but when. 

It’s not a matter of if I see my friends, but when. 

It’s not a matter of if I go to yoga, but when. 

It’s not a matter of if I spend time with my spouse, but when. 

It’s not a matter of if I am ever alone, but when. 

You read all the articles, seek all the advice, savor each nugget of wisdom from the women who have gone before you, but absolutely nothing can prepare you for the loss of when. 

Our second child was a complete surprise, although we did want more children eventually. Spare me the “don’t you know how babies are made” tirade because, yes, I’m well aware. I already have one. (But I feel certain this is the sweet justice of my incredulous remarks about just how do so many teen girls seem to get pregnant because it isn’t that easy.) 

The loss of when began the minute I found out I was pregnant once again, covered in vomit from my toddler and his first stomach bug. I took one look at that positive stick, purchased with a pile of Pediatlye, uttered a word my mother would die if she knew I said, and walked away, convinced it was in error. I proceeded to take 12 additional tests before I was convinced that, indeed, without my permission, decision, intention, I was pregnant. 

Motherhood is an adjustment, a shock to your way of life, but the hardest part, most shocking reality is the complete and utter loss of when—when you shower, eat, sleep, work, socialize, exercise, make love, find solitude. 

No longer do you set your own schedule, design your own day; rather, you must respond to the demands of a tiny dictator who is completely irrational, illogical, inconsiderate. 

I am struggling to navigate this new normal, a daily regiment that requires the complete loss of when I want, when I need, when I desire much of anything, some thing, everything. They tell me this season will pass, that now I’m doing the very hardest work. 

This does not lessen the sting of surrender now. 

I’m not saying I don't provide a soothing rhythm for my children, a set of expectations for the day so they can feel secure; they are on the best of schedule you can hope for as far as little people go. But I often find myself holding my bladder for 30 minutes before I can escape for relief. I often catch myself needing lunch at the same time I should be preparing dinner. And forget bedtime, because the toddler needs water, back scratching, lullabies, when mom needs to wine and unwind. 

I knew the sacrifice of motherhood would be enormous, but I had no idea the deep grief I would feel over the loss of when, namely the idea of “when I want.” Motherhood has brought out a confidence, a self-assurance I have not found in any other endeavor. Equally compelling, motherhood has brought to light my incessant selfishness, self-centeredness, the focus on me that I never recognized before. 

Perhaps the grief I feel over the loss of when is imperative, essential, necessary to putting others first. I’m clinging to this idea because I believe it will save my marriage, my family, my friendships, my career. I’m praying, believing, professing that the pruning of my control over the timing of all the things in my life leads me to depend on Him, His provision, His benevolence, His purpose. 

Perhaps losing when is finding life.

Lent: An intention

Upon year-end reflection, there was one thing in my life that was most apparent: I either need more Jesus, a therapist or both. So I decided to try more Jesus first. 

I’ve never been one to participate in Lent. In all honesty, for a long time, I thought it was just a neat Catholic tradition, so I did not know the real purpose behind this 40-day period leading up to Easter. A simple Google search provided me with this definition of Lent, and it sums up my intention for this season perfectly:

“Lent is a season of the Christian Year where Christians focus on simple living, prayer and fasting in order to grow closer to God.” (upperroom.org)

Simple living. Prayer. Fasting.

Are these not the very things that can bring restoration and redemption to our too busy, too stressful, too everything lives? 

Practically speaking, what can this look like? 

  • Simple living: Maybe this looks like reducing clutter so that you can breathe again, making both physical and spiritual margin for growth. Perhaps it means not purchasing new items that continue our emotional reliance on satisfying our feelings of inadequacy with things instead of Jesus. It’s less eating out, and more cooking in. It smells like a bonfire and tastes like s’mores. It’s an evening walk, a date with friends, a good book and a bubble bath. 
  • Prayer: This seems pretty self-explanatory but prayer, for me, is one of the hardest elements of my spiritual life. My brain wanders quickly to the who, what, when in my life, and I have a hard time being still. For you, maybe it means a focused three minutes of meditation first thing in the morning, in the shower or on the drive to work. Yes, three minutes. I think that’s a realistic starting place. Over the next 40 days, create a prayer journal and see the Lord faithfully answer prayers.
  • Fasting: Fasting always has been my go-to tool when I’m feeling spiritually out of touch and drained. In my suffering, I am reminded to breathe, call upon the Lord and seek His comfort. This does not have to simply be a fast of food, although I do recommend it. Nothing brings you closer to Jesus than forgoing caffeine. Those headaches will have you begging Jesus for relief. For me, a fast is removing obstacles that are hindering my growth and development spiritually, physically and mentally. In the evenings, when the kids are tucked in bed, I’m notorious for exhaling onto the couch and firing up tv shows that are just mindless. Why not take this time to be in a good book, The Good Book, where I can be learning, growing or at least escaping into a beautiful story that doesn’t make me want to ditch life and move to the beach (I’m looking at you, Caribbean Life)? Why not take this time to work on my blog, an outlet I’ve come to treasure when I make the time? Why not take this time to close my day with a yoga sequence? These are the things my heart desires, God-given desires I believe, and removing mindless tv will help create the margin for them. 

The intention of the season will be lost with a legalistic approach to Lent. Give yourself lots and lots of grace. When we find grace for ourselves, it opens up our capacity for grace for others exponentially.

A simple prayer for Lent: Lord, may you meet me where I am and help move me to where You are.

What can you add or subtract, multiply or divide for the next 40 days to bring you closer to the Lord and more fully become who you desire to be? 

P.S. If you need a resource to begin this journey, I’m using the She Reads Truth Lent study. You can access the online content here. There’s an app, too. It’s a guided study, allowing a lot of room for the Lord to move. #SRTLent

P.S.S.
Last year in a Time magazine article, the Pope made this suggestion: let’s fast from indifference this season, so we can feast on love. To me, this means adding something during this season, such as truly engaging with others, particularly those who may look different than us, talk different, think different. I really like this approach and thought it may be what you are looking for as well. 

Ride or Die: Friendship is work

You know that group of friends you see that is a little bit loud, a little bit obnoxious, filled with inside jokes and pee-in-your-pants amounts of laughter? The kind of friends that are fiercely loyal, ride or die, bury-a-body-with-you type of friends? 

Those are my friends. 

I don’t say this in a boastful manner; it’s simply the truth. I’ve had a lot of people comment to me, “Man, how did you get so many great friends? It is so hard for me— I don’t have anyone like that in my life.”

Let me tell you one important thing about the friendships in my life. They may have began organically, based on pot-luck roommates, college connections and similar interests, but they are still intact—10 years later—because of one simple thing: hard work. 

It is completely unrealistic and downright dumb to think that friendships can magically appear, grow and remain for years without hard work. It is no one else’s responsibility to do the work, but your own. As a good friend, yes, it is my job to check in on you as I am able. But an important reality of adult friendships is that we are all crazy busy with our own crap, as are you, and cannot always pick up on your subtle, sometimes passive aggressive, cries for attention. 

You need friend time? Make a plan and text the group. Feeling neglected? Ask for a coffee date and approach the situation in a loving fashion. There will be times of confrontation and disagreement that don’t have to have a negative result. If I am a friend worth having, I’ll operate with grace for you because you, as a friend worth having, will have grace for me. 

I cannot tell you how easy it would be for me to lose my friends. Currently, I’m the only one with a kid, let alone two, and that means my time is not my own. It is so easy to feel left out, because my season of life looks the most different. Sometimes, I am completely exhausted and don’t feel like getting ready, putting on pants and making it out. It would be so much easier to just cancel. So, you know what I do? 

I put on my big girl pants and I go. Why? Because that’s what good friends do.

Good friends group text, good friends stay connected, good friends tell you that your hair is a hot mess. Good friends aren’t easy to come by, so, when you have them, you fight tooth and nail to keep them. 

So yeah, you may be a little bit annoyed when we have the entire restaurant cheering at brunch. One of us may even fall off a chair when inspired to do a little “These boots were made for walking” chair dance because mimosas. The ridiculous amounts of pictures may spark a pang of jealousy or loneliness. My heart goes out to you. Instead of feeling bad about that, let it inspire you to find your people and work like mad to keep them. 

They are out there, you are lovable (Ben Higgins) and you are deserving. Now, get to work. 

(Quick disclaimer: friendship is work but it should never be consistently one-sided with absolutely no reciprocation. That’s a toxic environment and you should exit immediately. There is a grieving process to a friend break up that is perhaps more severe than a bf/gf situation. But it is critical to your health. That’s another post entirely.)

(Important note for those who really don’t have any solid friends: Adulthood does not provide the built-in friendship structure of being in school. In high school and college, it was easy because you saw people on the regular and had little other responsibilities to get in the way of hanging out. Start looking for people in places you frequent, like church, an adult sports league, a cooking class. If I can make friends, you can make friends. I promise.)

The Work No One Sees

Today, I cleaned the playroom. I dumped all the toy bins, sorted out ones to giveaway and gave each toy a clearly defined designation in the following categories: blocks, but not wooden; wooden toys; musical instruments; things with wheels; and kitchen supplies. I instilled a new “only dump out one tub at a time rule.” It hasn’t worked yet, but I’m holding out hope. 

Guess what? You absolutely cannot tell I did any of this. I restored order to the room that has no order. I cleaned, pruned, groomed the space we live in the most and, if I didn’t tell you, you would never notice. 

It’s scrubbing that database to reduce unnecessary mail returns and increase efficiency. It’s finally organizing the catch-all closet to give you the space you need to organize your home business. It’s simplifying, it’s gratifying; but only you know it happened.

The work that is done that no one knows about, that receives no accolades or recognition, is often the most important. It’s what anchors a drifting spirit and sets you apart as one who names, pursues, realizes dreams.

It’s the difference between creating healthy margin to chase life’s beautiful, whimsical moments and the constant chaos of unorganized, inefficient living. It’s the type of work you dread doing but are able to sleep so much better once it is completed. It’s the mundane things required to live your dream. 

Today, I cleaned the playroom. And absolutely no one knows. It didn’t change the world, it won’t put me up for Time Person of the Year. But you know what? It improved my quality of life, the quality of life for my family. And that means something. 

How does that saying go? Don’t put off for tomorrow what can be done today. I would like to offer this modification: 

Don’t put off for tomorrow what can be done today to make your tomorrow absolutely freaking beautiful. 

I don't know what to do either.

I cannot stop thinking about Paris. Beirut. Kenya. Potential, perhaps pending, attacks around the entire world that can happen while I’m at a concert, sitting at a bistro, pushing my children in the swing at the park. I’m nonstop checking the news, listening to NPR, reading articles to try to get a grasp of the issue because this is beyond my intelligence.

I keep picturing the real-life CIA equivalents of Carrie, Saul and Quinn from Homeland in a room in Langley, arguing about what’s best to do: drone strike? send Quinn for a direct assassination? send Carrie in to initiate, investigate, infiltrate an operation?

The options seem both plentiful and few at the same time. Nothing seems like a good solution, everything seems like an idea worth trying. At the end of the day, I feel so inadequately prepared to process the ideas of organized terrorism and what it takes to end it.

I fluctuate between wanting to invite 10 Syrian refugee families to stay on our property, those running for their lives, to escape persecution and death. I want to give them comfort, a good meal and rest for their weary bones. Then, I consider the ramifications of forged passports, mistaken identifies, intentional deception. It’s hard to know what’s right, who’s right. 

How do we talk with a terrorist organization whose currency is killing, who use beheadings as a bullhorn to call others to their cause? How do we destroy killers in some way besides killing? Whose responsibility is it to lead, to strategize, to implement the plan? Simply put, whose boots are on the ground? 

These are the hardest questions to answer and I have yet to find anyone with the answers.

So I resolve to pray. But can I be transparent? Prayer doesn’t feel like I’m doing anything, making a difference, helping to bring healing to a dire, horrific situation. Remember, I’m the person who recently launched a new small business revolving around the idea of a to do list and how to do more. I am left stranded, feeling as if there is just nothing I can do. 

Perhaps, in this situation, the greatest to do is to don’t. Don’t add to the fear-mongering, over-politicizing, divisive discussion we read of too often. Don’t let my family live in fear, too frightened to function, paralyzed with the potential it could happen to us. Don’t let my voice be drowned out, a voice that desires reconciliation, restoration and justice. Don’t stop praying.

I am by no means qualified to speak to this issue. But really, are any of us well-versed in foreign policy, military training, negotiations and democracy? No, and yet that shouldn’t stop us from doing the one thing we are all qualified to do: pray. So, instead of feeling completely inadequate, I will find time to be on my knees, crying out, demanding, begging for healing, peace, relief. It may not feel like enough, but in reality, if my belief and faith are sincere and true, it is doing far more than we could begin to fathom. 

Four Years Married: Two kids, three houses, four jobs

November 12 marked our fourth wedding. That’s 48 months of wedded bliss. That morning, I told him “Happy anniversary, babe!” and he responded simply, “My condolences.” (It’s a running joke between us that I got the raw end of the stick when I married him and that he hit the absolute jackpot. Let’s be serious, it’s the truth.)

Marriages often are judged by time; how many years it has lasted or how many years before it failed. But I prefer to gauge the strength of our marriage and the beauty of our story by the significant life events we have experienced, we have weathered, together. Maybe the real measure is two kids, three houses and four jobs. It’s how we spent the bulk of our first year of marriage apart while my husband helped get a friend elected to Congress; it’s the recovery period when we lose a close election. It’s raising two young boys together, while juggling demanding careers and pursuing new ventures. It’s finding time together to rekindle what can be easily lost in the day-to-day negotiations of life as parents, partners, friends. It’s loving each other as we grow, change and more clearly define who we are, often relearning who the other person is now. 

The honeymoon stage is over. We have ushered in a season of grueling, gut-wrenching, glorious love. This is the truest form of love I’ve ever know. My patient husband can only take so much of my crazy and I often push him to the breaking point, maybe intentionally sometimes because I just want to fight (Don’t judge. You do it, too), yet he is patient anyway. I can be mean and take the actions of others out on him, yet he is kind anyway. He never gets jealous, but I sure wish he would. I mean, that’s supposed to be adorable. He boasts for me, champions me, celebrates me, yet does not tell others of the ridiculously generous things he does (and gets mad if I tell anyone. Tough luck, dude). He keeps no record of my wrongs, never gives up on me and has endured with me, with our family, in a way that demonstrates to me he will never fail us.

So no, I don’t have the early stage of marriage emoji heart eyes all the time. That’s because I’m too busy engaging in the richest, deepest, most intimate relationship of my life. The depth of his love, his support, his grace, his perseverance gives me the wings I need to soar.

The honeymoon stage may be over but I could not be more certain about the decision I made, we made, four years ago.


Seriously, we are this mad about red cups?

Let's file the Starbucks red cup infuriation under the category of "I can't even."

Let's review the facts:

  • Starbucks is a secular company.
  • Starbucks is very vocal about their left-leaning views on issues like gay marriage and gun rights.
  • Starbucks says if you don't believe what they believe, don't buy their products.
  • Starbucks coffee sucks anyway (but not their toasted graham latte. YUM).

So, let me get this straight, I should be OUTRAGED that a secular company with views many would consider in contradiction to the values conservative Christians claim has removed "the symbols of Christmas" from their cups? I'm sorry, was there a nativity scene on a cup I missed? Or just all the most important symbols of Christmas like Christmas trees and holiday wreaths? 

I can't even. 

Starbucks has been polluting their coffee with politics for some time now. I don't regularly frequent the store because (a) I would rather support local coffee shops and drink GOOD coffee, like Elemental; (b) I don't like to waste significant amounts of money on coffee drinks; and (c) I don't like to purchase things from someone who says if I don't believe what they do, I shouldn't come in their door. It's not an active boycott; if momma needs a decaf, wet, whole-milk cappuccino, she is probably stopping there. (I don't discriminate; I eat Oreos and ChikFilA.) But, if it's convenient, I am always going local or, most likely, saving my cash. 

Fine, you say it isn't about the cup. This blog post isn't either. It is about my ever-increasing frustration with the cultural issues Christians choose to engage with a ferocity and intensity I believe should be reserved for issues that matter, like foster care and incarceration. 

Let's absolutely boycott Starbucks and put that $5 a day on coffee to nonprofits who engage the homeless, the disenfranchised, the ones in need. But let's be honest: most aren't going to do that. We are going to post an article on Facebook, pandering to those who think like us and putting Starbucks on blast, a company who desires "to create a culture of belonging, inclusion and diversity."

This is not a defense of Starbucks, as I've clearly outlined my own set of complaints about the company. But that last thing, the part about the culture they desire, is haunting. Because I thought that was the job of the church.