I can only take so much on the radio. Honestly. It's on four of my presets, now, and a fifth plays it every third song or so. Mother loves it. I hate it. If I wanted to listen to Christmas music, I'd download it or break out my CDs. Although, I have to say, the "alternative" station was playing a catchy little Christmas diddy from No Doubt while I was out earlier. THAT was different.
But yeah, so anyway, we got into a row today in the car over how negative I am about Christmas music. *sigh* Why can't the radio stop playing stupid Christmas love songs and whiny break up, "I miss you" Christmas songs, and santa and snowmen and couples loving their holida Christmas songs and, you know, just for a little while only play Christmas music. About the actual Christ mass! About remembering the first coming and looking forward to the second one.
There's enough pressure out there as it is to be secular, I don't want it coming at me from one more angle. The further into the season we get, the more I think, "I'm not practicing what I preach. I haven't donated a thing yet this year. But shoot! I don't have my kids and immediate family taken care of for gifts! How can I think about donating to others when I haven't fullfilled my familial responsibilities yet?"
Which makes me angry that these familial responsibilities exist. I mean, kids are kids. "I'm gonna ask Santa for Angry Birds Transformers Chuck as Bumblebee." Alright, I got it. And ya want that Max Steel sword and interactive Steel toy, too, right? Got it. I love my kids. I'll get them whatever they want. But... I don't want to feel like I'm OBLIGATED to get my brothers and parents presents. I want to do it because I love them and want to see them happy, but stressing over will it appear too much? not enough? not appropriate? not appreciated? a waste of money? should I just GIVE them money? at that point, I'm not really giving them a present, am I? I could give money to the homeless dude on the corner and it would be more of a present than to my brother for a video game of his own choosing in his own time, who will do nothing but bitch for three months about how I didn't give him enough to get a full game, and he couldn't get to the game store anyway. *sigh*
Add to this my other brother called me several colorful names today. And even though I HAVE thought of thoughtful gifts for his sorry ass, and even acquired half of them, ... *sigh* I'm not inspired to be "gifty" to him just now. I still love him, and I know he's just a stupid kid who isn't grown up enough to know better yet, it's just... I need to get my head in the right place, I think. And it's stressin' me.
I wanna yell at my current/soon-to-be-past church about everything they're doing wrong, so that they'll understand and change and do it right. I'm mad that we're coming up on the most important celebration of the church and all I feel when I go there is resentment. I wanna scream "You're doing church wrong! This isn't worship the way He wanted it to be!" But... Who am I to challenge those who AREN'T leaving? I can't even afford to help anyone outside of my immediate influence. My attempts to emotionally support other people only frustrate me. My attempts to educate in any creative way I can only frustrate me. It feels like no matter what I do to reach out and be His hands, I foul something up. (No wonder I enjoy Legend of Korra; apparently I relate to her.)
But then, -and I'm side stepping into Korra, here- I said she shoulda gone to see Zahir several episodes ago. I said it can't make anything worse, it can only get better, and he seemed like a reasonably philosophical guy, aside from being a villain. Everyone has their role in the world and all. AND I said Korra was being like Neo in Matrix 2 - that she couldn't get over it because she couldn't understand something. If not Zahir, I said she needed to either go get that acupuncture that Lin got, or go see Iroh again.
So how does that tie in with church? What's my beef? I'm angry. I was mellowing on my anger at the church on a whole's lackadaisical mannerisms for a while there because I figured they were just too duh and therefore sheep-like to do any better. Ultimately, if I wanted better spiritual company, I'd be better going and seeking it. So kinda I did. And I found it. And I'm walking a line of shifting where my church is. But then, this one still feels like loose ends - like when you haven't completely removed your stuff from your exboyfriend's house because you feel like at some point you need to go back and have a final showdown about WHY you left and what he should think about changing before the next girl leaves him too.
When I started going there, I went to their bible study only. Then they invited me to church. Then Sunday school. At first there were lots of people in all of those things. Three specific names stand out in my head that were heads-of-state type people in the church who have since STOPPED coming to bible study, and I don't go to the Sunday school anymore to know about there, but... When I was working during the week I couldn't go to bible study for a good long while. Then when I finally got the chance to come back, here were those three missing people. Oh! Great! I'm glad you guys were finally able to make it back! But... then they stopped coming again. *eye twitch* "So it's you." Yeah, so it's me. They stopped coming because I point out that they're too secure in doing nothing. That we all are. I don't point specific fingers, because that's rude. I don't like being rude to specific people. But I do point fingers at ways of living. If that happens to offend them specifically, then I'm sorry you chose to live in a way that's wrong. If we're in bible study to study the bible and what it says, and I elaborate on modern day versions of what it says, because that's what the questions say to do, and that happens to make someone uncomfortable, then gee, maybe the bible's not for them. And that's a horrible thing, kind of. But damnit, stand your ground. Either row, or get off the boat. Don't sit there and not row and then complain that we're not getting anywhere. But how can I say that to ANYONE when I can't afford to help anyone? "Feed my sheep" and all.
"Well maybe you don't have to donate dozens of dollars to charity. Maybe teaching Sunday school or something would be good enough."
Pft. Yeah, we see how well that goes. I ran a youth class, all they did was text. I run a once-a-month VBS type thing, all they do is run around and make their parents do their crafts. *head in hand* No, I wanna say no. No more. I'm not a teacher. Clearly. I can't feed the little sheep, it just doesn't work. And I can't pay to feed real people, either. So... what possible fruit can I bear? None. I'm a uselessly dry fig tree. All I'm good for is quoting stupid anecdotes to draw lines between the minister's point A and point B that he didn't even realize were there. "Well, I don't do the old testament that well." Well what did you do in Seminary, then, sleep? You shoulda had enough of it to remember the basics. How can you give a lecture on Beethoven, for instance, if you never listened to or read the third, fourth or fifth symphonies? You're missing quite a chunk of important life-work there. If it wasn't important, it wouldn't have been written down!
*taps Scarlet Skye* If I gave someone a name, it meant they were going to be important! I gave you all this stupid information that you thought was pointless because it was important! Why weren't you paying attention? Remember three episodes ago when the cast stopped and wondered about blah? Well, here's the result! Didn't you see it coming? Weren't you watching for it? The Bible is FULL of this stuff, and it's so awesome to see it pan out! How can people who SHOULD have watched every season, even though they were present every day, their whole lives, and who have the attendance pins to prove it, BE SO STUPID?!?! UGH!!!
JESUS, HOW DID YOU PUT UP WITH PEOPLE?!?! WE'RE SO STUPID!!!! UGH!
So yes, I want to go to church and flip some tables in rage. But there's a time and place for everything and it's not in the middle of worship. That time is set aside for worshiping God. Not for me to air my grievances. But then... there's announcements for a third or so of the thing... And prayer concerns that go on and on and on... Are either of those "worship"? One's reading the local church news, and the other is making spiritual requests by people who probably need to take a class on how to properly pray for people. Yes, there's a right way to do it, and most people don't get it. If we spent more time teaching people how to pray for each other during the service than we did discussing the most recent 7 Meter Stroll, or whatever, I think that would more qualify as worship. That WOULD be feeding the sheep, because it would be teaching them how to enrich their worship on a daily/regular basis. Teaching a man to fish, so to speak.
And this secular crap on the radio is doing nothing but distract. Yeah, I get it, it's the radio, it's a frivolity, like TV, and if you don't like it turn it off. But that's just why I got in an argument - because my passenger, who frequently gasses the car, DOES like it. LOVES IT, even. So to be fair, I ought to split the air time. But when I'm surrounded by vexing church affairs, being reminded of how bastardized the world has made one of its biggest events just worsens my mood. I try not to play stuff that I know she flat-out dislikes, like my Dad's music, or techno, or too much dance, or video game music. Shoot, I can't even remember the last time I had OCRemix music on in the car. Equestria Girls? I only get to hear that if Rich comes along. Which is to say, never. I'm suffering without my faves and dealing with what's available otherwise. Can't she do the same? I don't think that's unreasonable. Or at the least, if I share and do halfsies, and leave the Christmas music on for a wee bit, don't bitch at me for making a face if "Santa Baby" or "Another Auld Lang Syne" or "Last Christmas" comes on. I'm tolerating it, it doesn't mean I LIKE it.
Why don't people get that? That you can dislike something, but tolerate its existence? I dislike alcohol, but I tolerate its existence. I dislike Warcraft, but I don't go on protests about it. I dislike most Republican candidates, but I've known several republicans who are very nice and good people, so I tolerate their political views as long as they don't shove them down my throat. That's how the world works. Eat your vegetables. Wash behind your ears. Cut the grass. You may not like it, but shit happens, so we deal.
But I DO feel I should go to protest over the church thing. I just have to figure out how.
Listening to: charlie brown christmas
Watching: Legend of Korra FINALLY GETTING CAUGHT UP
Eating: pop tarts and pie - goodby BMI
Drinking: milk (it does a body good)