Thank You, God, that my life’s already good.

Lord, the older I get, the more I am learning about setting boundaries. I realized today how much I rely on the Lifetime v. Hallmark test. When I am making decisions now, my whole rationale is based on if this is gonna end up with me on a Lifetime movie being killed, cheating on my imaginary husband, cuttin somebody like a foolish woman, and windin myself in the slammer orrrrr is it gonna end up with me on the Hallmark channel with some cutety batooty, my white picket fence, and the kids runnin around the farm. Ok, like it is a serious thought process.

It’s not all about which kind of man, I want to end up with. Which is still a factor in my decision making process because who I surround myself with does matter and does impact where my life is headed. The friends the women in these movies pick are extremely important too. Lifetime friends are jealous and sabotage all the good stuff! Hallmark friends hold you accountable, help you make better choices, and point a girl right back in Your direction, God.

Lifetime movies are these elaborate NUTS stories about even nuttier women. I am not tryin to out crazy my cute levels here. I have to be cuter than I am crazy. That’s how folks tell ya to get a husband anyways. Which is completely sexist, btdubbs. Like does the man have an equivalent test? Like does he have to be smarter than he is cute? Cause if he’s dumber than a doornail, I might have to re-evaluate some things.

Hallmark movies are predictable and warm and cozy. They are safe. Ya girl might look real cute in jump suits but not in orange ones! Especially sittin behind some dirty glass that ain’t been cleaned in who knows how long. Runnin around the house, stabbin folks is not my idea of fun. Runnin around the yard, chasin kids and chickens is my idea of fun. It’s the little, daily choices that make the difference and in where you are runnin. Hallmark has just as much drama and heartache, but it’s the little, daily choices made that change the ending. Both channels start the same, but everybody wants to act surprised by the ending. Nope, You, God gave us freedom to act right and gave us a way out of our mess, even the messes we, ourselves sat there and made.

This is why boundaries are so important! Because Hallmark chooses to protect the good stuff. Relationships are tested just the same, but the choices change the ending. Saturday mornings are spent laughing with family around the table for Brunch, instead of dark alley rendezvous with strange folks by yourself. Sunday nights are spent volunteering with the Youth Group, instead of gettin jiggy with it at the Clurb. I am not perfect by any stretch. I’ve done both, I’ve been on both sides of it. I learned how important my choices are to determine where I am going. My daddy used to ask us constantly: “where does trouble live?” TROUBLE STREET! Where you go and who you go with is sooo important. Protect yourself, protect your friends, and protect your relationships, protect your kids. People matter. Put boundaries around them.

Then Christmas comes around and it’s a free for all. Everybody acts right during the Holidays. Hallmark and Lifetime both got those good Christmas movies. I mean, obviously Hallmark’s are still better. But that’s another story, for another day, which also further proves my point. Even when you try to imitate, it still ain’t as good. I have to check my heart and motivations first and foremost. I can’t just look good, I have to actually make those good choices that lead me to the good stuff.

I am so incredibly blessed and realize lately exactly how much I am blessed. Yes, ya girl got capital T: Trauma, but ya girl also got capital T: Truth. I can go get healing. I can go to counseling. I can make a Titus 2 friend. I can extend more healing and love, instead of more hurting and hate. I do not have to stay in my hurt or angry places. I can leave. I have a way out. I make the choices. I chose. I do not have control at what happens to me, but I do have the control over me, my attitude, my reactions, my direction, and who I am going with. And it’s already getting good.

So, here is my prayer. Lord, thank you for the freedom of choice. Thank you for allowing me to pursue a relationship with you. Thank you for showing me the way out of the darkness. Thank you for allowing me to grow and learn from my mistakes. Thank you for loving me too much to leave me in my sin. Thank you for counseling and healing and Truth. Thank you for making me strong enough to get up and get out and not go back. Thank you for loving me still, even when I do relapse. Thank you for loving me still, even when I have to start all over. Thank you for especially loving me when I don’t love you back. Father, I am so sorry for when I don’t set those boundaries. Father, I am so sorry for when I make the wrong choice and head down the wrong path, one step at a time, further and further from you. Abba, thank you so so much for letting me come back to you every single time. Thank you for saving me and for thinking I am worth saving. Even if I was the only one who needed saving, You would have still gotten on that cross. Even if I am the one that put you up there, You would have still gotten on that cross. The way you love me is unfathomable, immeasurable, incomprehensible, and beyond all my wildest dreams. I am blessed far more than I deserve. And as always I pray for my family and sorority sisters. I pray for my university. I pray for guidance for our government, church, and school leaders. I pray for protection for our troops. I pray for all of those that need you now and for those that haven’t met you yet. In Jesus’ name, Amen.