When You Look In The Mirror

When my wife and I went through our troubled times a few years back, I wrote on the mirror – Who do you want to be today? It was a daily reminder that when we looked in the mirror, we had a choice that day to do the right thing and live for God or do the wrong thing. It was our choice.

It is your choice who you want to be today. Do you want to be a bully? Do you want to put others down and make fun of them? Do you want to make a change and make your corner of the world a better place? God gave us free will. He let’s us choose what we will do with this time we spend on this earth.

I don’t understand bullies. I don’t understand taking your frustrations out on someone that is weaker than you. Why don’t bullies pick on someone that can fight back? Unfortunately, bullies develop early in childhood. Some reasons are lack of love, lack of attention, they see their parents be bullies, they lack social skills, etc.  Psychologists have determined that bullies are untroubled by anxiety, they have a strong need to dominate and derive satisfaction from their actions, they have little or no prosocial skills – they do not know how to relate to others. They also do not understand how little they are liked because their “friends” will encourage them, laugh with them etc when they do bully. I do know bullies are hurting also. They just don’t know how to express it. I do know that if they don’t learn how to that it affects them their entire lives, their relationships, their jobs, their kids.  Both bullies and their victims can be affected the rest of their lives by their actions.

The cycle can be stopped. It must be stopped.

Parents need to understand it is not boys will be boys or girls will be girls. It is a call for attention, albeit the wrong kind. Unfortunately us parents fail to see or choose not to see bullying-not sharing, throwing their toys at others- when the child is younger, which only enforces their belief that it is okay as they get older. Then as they get older parents are so consumed with work, bills, soccer practice, band practice, etc that we talk to our kids but don’t carry conversations with them on what is going on in their lives.

My wife and I have tried to raise all our girls the right way but we are a blended family and didn’t always get to teach them right. Other circumstances, Kayhla’s mom leaving her for Florida, also threw in some wrenches. For the most part I would like to believe they stand up for what they believe in and try their best to help others. I know since Kylie has been with us from birth that she has been raised to have high self esteem, to be aware of how her friends treat her, etc. I know a few times she has had trouble with a couple girls that were mean to her and she tried to talk to and be nice to and when that didn’t work she asked the teacher to move her seat so she could do her work. She also asked to have a one on one meeting with one of the girls and her teacher to discuss the issues at hand.

I can tell you I have always stood up to bullies. Most of the time when someone came at me, I stood my ground. I have never been in a fight but I have never backed down. I can tell you one story at my last job where I was the transportation manager at a scrap yard where we have some unsavory customers. My boss, who was a bully, said we were going to work until five one Christmas Eve. We had always closed at one in the past. No one said a word, except for me and I said no. We work six days a week, if we work until five we will miss Christmas Eve services, we have family to see and it isn’t right and I won’t work and neither will anyone else. He didn’t like it but sent out an email asking for everyone else’s opinion. They all said he was wrong. We closed at one that day.  Maybe I have just got lucky or maybe God has always been watching out for me but in my experience, if you don’t back down, they usually walk away (I know this isn’t always true though). I have also just walked away from people, sometimes you have to be the bigger person and just walk away. Each situation is different.

I would like to say I have never been a bully but I have. When my wife made some poor choices, I berated her constantly. I wouldn’t let it drop. I was a bully. I was hurt and I wanted her to hurt. I should’ve been more Christ-like. I am human though and I am sure at one point in our lives, most of us have done something that we would consider as bully behavior. Gossip, talking about someone behind their back, putting something on social media, anything that would hurt someone else. It is so easy to always look at the negative in people but everyone has good qualities also.

We have the power to build others up. Say something nice. It doesn’t take much to say nice job on that test, you did a good job on that project, nice to see you today, anything positive that comes from the heart and is genuine.

I wouldn’t want to be the one that caused someone else to hurt themselves or even commit suicide. I don’t know how I could ever look at myself in the mirror if I did.

Again, I don’t think my words came out like I wanted them to but I hope God uses them to touch someone on this issue. You can make a difference. Be a positive role model.

When you look in the mirror will you feel good about yourself? Did you help or did hurt today? Today our mirror has on it God, Trust, Pray, Believe, Hope, Faith. It is our choice that that is who we want to be.

Teen bullying –

Reverse the Trend by Reverse Order – 

Mean by Taylor Swift – 

Hopeful by Bars and Melody – 

Face Down by The Red Jumpsuit Apparatus – 

Hey Bully by Morgan Frazier – 

Because of You by Kelly Clarkson – 

Words by Hawk Nelson – 

Speak Life by TobyMac – 

I Hate Hate by About A Mile – 

Dare To Be Different by Rachael Lynn – 

Breathe Me by Sia – 

Build You Up by Kim Taylor – 

Mean Girls by Rachel Crow – 

Stand Up by Mike Tompkins – 

Even Though I Say by Saint Asonia – 

Bully by Shinedown – 

Bully by Three Days Grace – 

Small Town by Thousand Foot Krutch – 

Fight Song by Rachel Platten – 

Somethings Gotta Give by All Time Low – 

Burn Bright by Natalie Grant – 

Made To Glow by Shine Bright Baby –

World Changers by Matthew West – 

World Changers by Audio Adrenaline – 

Man In The Mirror by Michael Jackson – 

Who You Are

You are who you are and who God made you to be. You are not what others say you are. I know it is difficult to drown out the voices but there is only one voice to listen to. I know it is difficult and think these times will never end but they will get better. I wish I could say the cliques of high school end but in reality they do not. People grow up and they do mature but there will always be the jock, the geek, the beautiful, the reclusive, the invisible and the rebellious.

I think God made me to be all the above in one. I am athletic. I run and  played team sports but I was never the best. I am a geek. I like superheroes and I like to read. Even though I don’t always think so a lot of people have said I am attractive. Some girls called me Handsome Hansen. Lol. I am reclusive. I am an introvert. I could spend days by myself if I could. I am rebellious. I have stood toe to toe with my boss when he was wrong. I have stood up for what is wrong.  I have had people ask me to speak up for a group of employees because they knew I wasn’t afraid to go against my boss. Growing up I was more of a popular kid but I also hung out with all the above cliques. It made me more rounded as a person but it also, in my opinion, led me to not have any close friends. When you are friends with all, you can’t be a best friend to one. That’s my story, what is yours?

Do you like who you are? I’m not talking about how you look. God made each of us in His image and He made you who you are. God has used shy people, people with speech impediments, people that didn’t think they were good enough. God has used people with no legs and no arms to change the lives of thousands of people. He has used them to lead congregations, lead churches, lead nations. I am talking about how you are on the inside. Do you hate other people, do you pick on other people, do you follow others even though you know what they are doing is wrong, do you hold resentment to those that hurt you, do you seek revenge, do you forgive, do you love your enemies, do you do the right thing even if no one else will, do you stand up for the least of us? Please watch this video before you continue reading.

Nick Vujicic – yes I posted this yesterday also but it is worth watching again 

I know things are more difficult now than when I was younger. Maybe I had my books knocked out of my hand or I was pushed against a locker but nothing crazy. I wasn’t really picked on nor was I a bully. I guess you could say I was just there. It wasn’t like today where social media allows you to be bullied 24/7. I know it is easier said than done but try to ignore it. The people that are bullying usually have more issues than you do. The jock that looks like he has it all together could really have issues with anxiety, trying to perform well all the time, their parents could be constantly pushing them to perform to get that scholarship. The beautiful cheerleader could have self-esteem issues. She always has to look good, watch what she eats, even have an eating disorder. Someone’s parents could be getting a divorce or fighting all the time so they take it out on you. The point is no one is perfect. We all have issues. It is how you react to those times that make you who you are.

I was cheated on, several times, because I am the nice guy. I don’t talk enough or I may not be exciting enough. I could’ve went off and seriously hurt or killed the other people or even hurt myself but in the end, I know who I am. I know God will take care of things in His time. I know the tormentors will end up being the tormented.

Suicide is not the answer. No matter how old you are. In 2013 the rate was 12.6 deaths per 100,000 people. Falling only to cancer and heart disease as the most deaths in the United States. In 2013, adolescents and young adults aged 15 to 24 had a suicide rate of 10.9. Surprising to me was that the highest suicide rate (19.1) was among people 45 to 64 years old. I guess mid-life crisis, loss of jobs, divorces, depression for those in my age group. Like I said, it may not get better as you get older but you must find who you are and be happy with who you are.

Suicide prevention info : Hotline Numbers: 1-800-273-TALK or 1-800-273-8255Crisis Text Line: Text “LISTEN” to 741-741

I saw an excellent movie also called To Write Love On Her Arms which is also an organization that can help.

One day, at your 10 or 15 or 20 year reunion you will see what I mean. The star quarterback could be bald and gained 50 lbs. The beautiful one may not be so beautiful. The plain girl is now the beautiful girl. The shy guy is now a CEO at a Fortune 500 company. The overweight person could now be a model. You never know what your future holds, only God knows the future and He has great plans for you. Be patient and wait for Him. If you aren’t ready for Jesus yet, find a positive role model.  Find someone who lives selflessly. Find someone who is happy with who they are. Message me. I will help to the best of my ability. Surround yourself with positive people. It is the people you surround yourself with that you will be associated with.

Jesus was rejected by humans but He will never reject you. Look at the next few inserts.

Parents, you play a part in this also. Raise your kids to have self-esteem. Build them up. They don’t have to be the best but teach them how to love themselves and appreciate the abilities they have, not to worry about what they don’t have.

Kids, don’t spend all your time on social media. Don’t believe the lies people say to make themselves feel better. Have you ever seen some of these super models without make up? Sure they look gorgeous on the magazines but in real life not so much. Kurt Warner wasn’t drafted out of college. He knew who he was and worked hard and didn’t believe that he wasn’t good enough. He became a league MVP. Michael Jordan cut from his basketball team. Tom Brady drafted in 6th round. Six quarterbacks were thought to be better than Tom Brady. None of them are in the league or made much of an impact when they were. Did he listen that these guys were better than him? Believe in yourselves. You are so much more than what others think you are. You are loved and accepted.

Watch The Breakfast Club. Even though it is just a movie, it is right on the mark. We are all going through the same things.

This week on Girl Meets World, Girl Meets Yearbook,  also dealt with knowing who you are. People are always going to say things but how you react defines the person who you are. See how God works, right when I was going to write on this topic there it is for me to see.

I apologize for the length of this but it is something I truly believe in. If everyone taught their children to have high self-esteem and these children believed in themselves, there would not be nearly as many bullies, suicides, harming oneself, and lack of doing the right thing in this world.

You are loved and accepted, you are precious and cherished. You are not your mistakes or who people say you are. Believe in yourself.

Who You Are by The Unspoken – 

You Are More by Tenth Avenue North – 

Who You Are by Jessie J – 

Exhale by Plumb – 

Be Somebody by Thousand Foot Krutch – 

Who Am I by Casting Crowns – 

Let It Go by Idina Menzel – 

Echo by Jason Walker – 

Remind Me Who I Am by Jason Gray – 

Last Night by Skillet – 

Baby Don’t Cut by B-Mike – 

Dark Enough by Amanda Lopiccolo – 

Scars by SayWeCanFly – 

Goodbye I’m Sorry by Jamestown Story – 

Saving You by Chris Ganim – 

He Knows by Jeremy Camp – 

All About The Bass by Meghan Trainor – I didn’t like this song at first then I really listened to the lyrics and how it was about self esteem – 

Who Says by Selena Gomez – 

Skyscraper by Demi Lovato – 

Beauty in the Broken by Hyland – 

One Day by Charice – 

Unity by Shinedown – 

Every Bit of Lovely by Jamie Grace – 

Firework by Katy Perry – 

High School Never Ends by Bowling for Soup – 

High School by SuperchicK –