(Dateline: OC.net Palace/Bowling Alley/Brewpub's Firing Range, somewhere in the "North 40") As the smoke cleared following their first live-fire testing of the official OC.net Cherry Tomato Rifle and Party Favor, some disturbing news reached the ears of the Administrators and GMs from the palace regarding the monthly Post of the Month announcement. Quickly mounting their llamas, they returned with all haste to the palace to find the voting chamber filled with smoke. Putting all caution to the wind, they charged forward into the chamber to find some newbie users who did not know how to use a kettle popper. After demonstrating the proper preparation of Lenten Kettle Corn, they proceeded to the voting box where they tallied the ballots and exited to the balcony. After quieting the hungry masses down with promises of popped goodness, they then announced the following:
"The most worthy recipients of the Post-of-the-Month awards for January and February are FatherGiryus and quietmorning (respectively). FatherGiryus was nominated for his posts:
A small bit of unsolicited advice: these types of open forums are not healthy for everyone. It is kind of like doing martial arts: a great form of exercise, but not good for someone who is uncomfortable with having physical contact with others and occasionally getting punched.
There are folks who can have rip-roaring arguments with another person, but harbor no resentments afterwards. It may be difficult for you to imagine, but in my culture and the cultures of many of the people I serve, arguing is not only expected, it is the norm. If you are not willing to argue and even get verbally aggressive, they think you are cold or even arrogant.
Men also tend to tease one another when there is a high level of trust. The military and sports teams are filled with this type of ribald behavior, which actually builds camaraderie. Of course, our culture has become more politically correct and frowns on this natural behavior, though it is not sinful in itself.
Our problems begin when we begin to take these discussions away from our computers. If this is happening for you, particularly if you are suffering when seeing two other people go at it, then you might consider taking a break from the forum until you can establish healthy boundaries. Right now, your boundaries are such that these matters are causing you difficulties, and so this forum may not be suited to your personality as it is now.
Again, you are free to do what you like, but I think it is not good to be tormented by other people's discussions if you can avoid it. Life is hard enough.
I won't play your silly games Peter. I'm all too well aware of your rhetorical gimmicks.
I disagree with Gebre on the issue of wearing a robe (obviously) and many other issues, but I support him and am very upset at the way he is being treated. I'm not a dramatic person, but I am a sensitive one. Nothing upsets me more than kind people being treated like garbage. Honestly, this kind of treatment is all too common around here. I wish I could remain a member of this community, but I can't. I'm tired of going to bed with an upset stomach. Attack me, be sarcastic and mean spirited with me, I'll deal with it, but please, I beg of you, at the very least, leave the kind, decent people alone. They don't deserve it.
I try to remember to be polite to everyone, though I never compromise the truth. It can be done. However, my reasons may be different from some. Allow me to tell of one example:
Years ago, there was a clergyman of ROCOR who was very, very 'strict' in his views, so much so that he could not keep them to himself (we all have the sort) and he regularly made public insults against 'New Calendarists' which included the OCA bishop and clergy in his area. His bishop, a very saintly man in the truest sense of the word, made him go and beg forgiveness for all those the clergyman had scorned.
Years later, Communion with Moscow was restored, and so the broken Communion between ROCOR and the others whom the clergyman had scorned was no longer an excuse to behave badly. Having healed himself and those relationships before the reconciliation, he was not left being embarrassed by his former conduct by the reunion of Moscow and ROCOR. Sadly, others had not recieved such good spiritual direction, and were left to struggle through their apologies, while others fled into outer darkness rather than apologize for their intemperance.
We never know when our 'enemies' may end up being our brethren. For example, we may end up having a Great Council and reconciling the EO and OO churches. Try to picture how difficult it will be for those who once berated the other with insults to suddenly become brothers with those he insulted.
It may not happen in my lifetime or ever, but I think I will take the risk and prepare just in case. I hate to be embarrassed...
... and quietmorning for:
My husband is atheist. We are so opposite in just about everything there is to be 'one' about. We have very very little common ground. I started praying for my husband regularly every day. . .several times a day - only asking Our Lord to have mercy on him. This has been going on for a little over a year.
I go to church alone. I pray alone. I carry the joy of loving Him alone.
And I'm changing.
That's right **I'M** changing.
It just doesn't bother me any longer. I am finding that his life style and choices do not affect me - and I am much more tolerant of them. I'm finding that many of his choices are actually honing me to making ME a better Christian. I'm developing patience in things that were so irritating and would just wreck my world in a heart beat before. That is Christ in me. He's loves my husband with a passion and a love and a long-suffering that I cannot begin to reach.
But here's the kicker. . .and it's a humbling one, so get ready. I'm going to be very blunt and hand you some hard words.
It's not about ME. It's about HIM. (Christ Jesus)
It's not about MY 'happy marriage' it's about my dying to myself. It's not about MY faith, it's about HIS desire to see me AND my husband with HIM in eternity. It's about HIS love.
So it's not about my husband changing, it's about my picking up my cross daily and dying to my own will, my own wishes and moving over to make plenty of room for HIS WILL AND HIS WISHES. (Again, Christ Jesus' will)
When I first started my journey, I wanted to change my spouse to fit into what I thought was best for **ME** to be what **I** wanted to be. Instead, my faith has challenged me to go the narrow road, the higher road. . .and seek His kingdom and His righteousness instead.
I've seen a lot of changes in my marriage in the last year. My husband no longer throws a temper tantrum when I want to give to the poor or when I ask for something of my faith for Christmas. He's no longer threatened by it.
Submitting myself to God first made such a difference. If my husband wants me to join him in the shower in the morning, then I give it as a living sacrifice to my God - instead of going to pray my morning prayers. I miss Him. . . but our commandments are to love. There is nothing greater than love - and if we do not love, we die.
I hope this helps.
I'm with Aposphet. . .this is incredibly immature behavior.
My husband is an atheist. He is grown up enough and RESPECTS ME enough to know that he is he and I am me, and while we are married and 'one' we are also two completely different people. In fact, exact opposites. It is a fairly new lesson for him, however. He too was very "my way or the highway".
For us, my going to the Orthodox Church was not the issue (though that's where the issue presented itself) the issue was his respect for me, or actually the lack of respect for me. If it weren't my becoming active in church again, something else. Actually, come to think of it, it was something else. . .it was many many smaller less noticeable things. It was not about whether or not we were of the same faith (or lack thereof) - it was whether or not I was HIM. An exact mirror image.
His narcissistic behaviors / views were and are based out of fear. He knows him. He can predict him. . .and therefore can support the delusion that life is controllable. Or at least reasonably so. (Heh. . .ever tried to nail jello to a tree??!! **laughs**) Once he realized his whole world wasn't going to crumble to nothing if I was different from him, and he realized he could love someone who wasn't a mirror image of him and oh my goodness, different can be FUN! Then he relaxed and now is very supportive. . . .but it wasn't over night.
Realizing that he was / is AFRAID, helped me to have compassion for him and RESPOND to him instead of REACT to him. Responding in patience, love and reassurance goes a lot further than reacting to him in hyper defenses. I kept reassuring him that I love him, that I will not shove my faith down his throat (I NEVER do that.) I would never try to push him into ANYTHING, though I would invite him every once in a while to church functions. . .he would always have the ability to say NO, and I would RESPECT that. . .completely. Totally completely. . .no wavering.
This weekend is a retreat for the women at my church. I asked if we could have one of the women stay here over night - (wow. . .that's so out of the norm for us! Change is hard hard for him.) He immediately said NO. Absolutely NOT. Then all the things he was afraid of came falling out of his mouth. . . it would set a president, they would take advantage, things would disappear (see what I mean about fear?) I said, "OK" gave him a kiss and a hug, then went on about what I needed to do next.
Not twenty seconds later he chased me down in the house (old big house) and said, "She can come, we can have her here. . .after all, she's coming from out of town, right? And this is just a once a year thing, right? And we won't have to do it all the time, right?"
She'll be here tonight.
But it started with my learning how to assert that I am not him, a LOT of prayer, and respecting him. I also had to learn to set some good boundaries. We did fight once - a really good heavy duty fight over whether I would give to the poor or not. I stood my ground. It is too important. . .and we worked out a compromise.
He too used to threaten divorce . . .until I called his bluff and made arrangements to leave. He quickly apologized - I told him that those arrangements stand that threatening me with divorce every time he can't 'make me BE what he wants me to BE' isn't going to fly with me. I will not be manipulated. If he threatens it again, I'm gone. He has not threatened it since. It's a manipulation game, and a very harmful one. It's abusive. It's a victim's game. He was not a victim.
Something I was taught that is true and helps him break out of the denial of disrespect: "My going to church and believing in God is just as important to me as your not going to church and not believing in God is important to you. It's not less important, it's not more important - but it IS AS IMPORTANT. I respect your beliefs and views, I'm asking you to respect mine."
People grow and change. . .life is change. People who can accept change easily are less stressed, grieve less and are more emotionally mature than people who cannot.
The Holy Spirit has been making changes in my husband through this last year in such wonderful ways. . .pray. . .pray for her daily - every single day only asking for His mercy on her. You'll see change in time that you never ever thought you'd see. He's so good. He's so very good.
Lord have mercy!!
And as the crowd began to see the popcorn vendors enter the plaza, they felt freed to then proclaim their usual cry of "AXIOI! AXIOI! AXIOI!"