Fighting with each other over politics, really?

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and-i-am-here

When I became a citizen almost 2 years ago, I was excited for my first presidential election and for the chance of making a difference. I was so frustrated with our current government and knew something needed to happen. Things haven’t gotten any better since then, in fact it’s gotten worse. Our government, including our president, don’t seem to care much about us as citizens and I am sick and tired of all their false promises, dishonesty and their arrogance. All they care about is themselves!

Sadly, as I was watching this election come to an end, I also noticed that it caused a lot of drama between people. It is heartbreaking to watch how people interact on social media and how they have a go at each other simply because one person has a different opinion than the other one. I am so tired of political correctness and how some people are allowed to say what they want and others can’t, otherwise they are called names and the other side is offended by it. It is so frustrating to say the least.

I think Satan has his hands in this big time. It just disappoints me how some people behave and how they think their behavior is okay. Our government is way too big now because it makes them think they are in charge and have all the power over us. If people would just understand, that “We the people” are the one’s putting them there and that they should only have very little power, things would be so much better and different. Government shouldn’t be there to run our lives. The government is also not supposed to make all the decisions by themselves, and many of us don’t seem to notice how they take over more and more. It’s like the story of the frog that was put in warm water. If it had been hot from the beginning he would have jumped out right away, but because the water was turned up gradually, he didn’t realize what was happening until it was too late. That’s where we are right now. We are getting burned big time!

I was very involved in politics for a while and the result was that a lot of things really ticked me off (and still do) and I wasn’t able to discuss politics with certain people anymore. I am so over all of this and can’t wait until this has come to an end. It doesn’t matter who wins the election because the top candidates are not good for the job. Hillary is plain evil and Trump might have his good qualities (who knows), but his mouth certainly isn’t showing it. On top of that I think both of them just care about themselves and not us. Nothing is more important to Hillary than being the first female president and she will do what it takes to get there no matter how evil and wrong it is, and Trump is so busy trying to show how corrupt politicians are, he puts his foot in his mouth every single time. Sigh! He did two good things though, he made America aware how corrupt our government, candidates and leaders really are, and people are starting to look at our other parties too. Many people are surprised that there are more parties, but maybe it is a good thing that our two big parties have such horrible candidates because other people finally get noticed as well.

It is tiring though that I have to constantly defend myself, my country and our so-called candidates whenever I speak to someone here in Europe. I wish people would stop believing the lies of the media (they are just as bad as our politicians) and start researching things more, but that’s not going to happen any time soon. The way some friends and relatives attack and think about our US candidates is astonishing. The sad thing is, it is very much one-sided. If they would feel that way about both candidates, fine, but the hatred over here to one candidate is ridiculous. Oh well. I think I just have to start refusing to discuss politics and just leave the room if the other person won’t stop talking about it.

One thing is clear though, the outcome of this election will not be a good one because no matter who wins, the other side will be unhappy and very angry about it. For the first time in these past 2 years, I am grateful that I am not in the US when this election takes place and afterwards either. Things are not going to be pretty from now on.

Those of you who are reading this, please do yourself, and everyone else, a favor and don’t attack the people you disagree with. We can have different opinions, views and beliefs and still like each other. If you find posts on social media irritating, just unfollow that person for a while. I have unfollowed quite a few lately and that makes my newsfeed a lot more bearable. πŸ˜‰ We don’t have to discuss certain things with those around us. Sometimes friendships are best, when some things are left unsaid. I have started staying away from this election garbage as much as possible and it feels so great. Obviously I can’t avoid it completely, but I am getting there. Sometimes I think all I want to do is crawl back to bed, pull my blanket over me and stay there until this darn election is over. But there is more to life and I would miss out on many beautiful things. Plus, friendships are important to me and we should work on those every single day. A stupid election shouldn’t ruin that. Let’s focus on the good things in life, share positive thoughts and experiences, and worry about the things that are really important. πŸ™‚

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Love is the language of the heart…

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Love is definitely a wonderful and powerful word. To make love work we have to do something, and we need to listen to our hearts to know what someone else might need, or is trying to say. Love surely is an action word, but that doesn’t mean it is easy. Loving someone else can be the most beautiful thing, but it can also be a heartache, trial or even seem impossible.

Love often ends up in marriage and that is not as easy as it sounds or looks. It is something both partners have to work on every single day, and both have to beΒ  100% committed that they want to make it work no matter what.

I love my husband and I am grateful we have been married for 12 years now. I see that as a blessing because in today’s world it is just not a normal thing anymore. Of course we have our ups and downs, and sometimes we dislike each other quite a bit, but our love is still there and as long as we both stick to our goals and commitment, we can make it.

It does break my heart when I hear about people breaking up or getting a divorce. Of course there are times when a marriage needs to be broken apart (like when one is abusing the other, physically or mentally), but in my experience it is for many just an easy way out because they don’t want to deal with the hard and difficult times. They want to run away from problems which, most of the time, can be worked out. I know that saying that is very risky because many don’t seem to think that way anymore and they definitely don’t agree with me on that, but I still believe that with all my heart. I know that Heavenly Father puts people together for a reason and we can only achieve what he wants us to achieve if we are willing to work through everything, even the hard times.

Satan certainly uses divorce to get to the family and destroy as much love and feelings as he can. It makes me sad because he seems to have a lot of success lately and it doesn’t even seem to bother most people that families are breaking apart and that unkindness, hatred and evil is spreading everywhere around us.

It is tough to hang on sometimes because we are different and come from different backgrounds, families and sometimes even countries and cultures, but when we agree to do what we can and when we make Heavenly Father part of our “partnership” anything and everything is possible. He loves us more than we can imagine and if we have Him by our side, we can love those around us as well.

I wish I could help those around us understand that they shouldn’t just give up because things are tough, but that they should keep fighting the good fight. I know I can’t because many don’t even listen. They are so set on knowing that there isn’t a solution, and that things can’t be worked out, that they just don’t hear what other people might have to say. Again, of course there are times when a divorce is helpful and important, but the world makes us believe now that the numbers should go up instead of down and that there are many cases that need to be broken up. I disagree with that and I think that we could change that kind of thinking if we were only willing to fully trust the Lord and work hard on sticking together. A good marriage doesn’t just happen. We have to work together and help one another to grow and become a better person. One meaning of love is: a feeling of strong or constant affection for a person. We can have constant affection for someone and not like what they do or say. We can give our heart to someone and still be ourselves.

Goethe once said: “If you treat a man as he is, he will remain as he is, but if you treat him as if he were what he ought to be, and could be, he will become what he ought to be, and should be.” Once we start treating each other in such way, things will change. Once we start seeing one another like that we can truly love each other and make this world and our families a better place.

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Can we make a difference?

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I have been thinking about the horrible things that are happening right now. Instead of getting better, it is getting worse and I have to say it is not only scary to watch but very sad. It just breaks my heart to see around me so much hate, misery and anger. It seems to me that evil is spreading contention faster than we can think, and it is successful in reaching the hearts of many.

But why do we let evil influence us so much? Why do we listen to the lies of politicians and the media and believe people that make no secret out of their corruption and dishonesty? Why do we listen to people who tell us bad things about others instead of getting to know the person first and listening to what our heart tells us? Why do we listen to “leaders” who try to divide us in every possible way? Why is it so hard to accept a person for who he/she is? Why is it so hard to understand that tolerance and acceptance doesn’t mean we have to agree with someone’s choices, lifestyle and opinions but we can still be kind, compassionte and gracious?

With worry I have watched the aggressiveness of many on social media when someone said or posted something the other person didn’t like. I have watched people attacking and unfriending each other simply because they were of a different opinion. I seldom respond to contentious comments now because the way I see it, there is no reason to argue, fight and contend because it just causes bad feelings and possible losing of trust and even friendships. Is it worth it?

Sometimes the best thing we can do, when someone disagrees with us on something, is to acknowledge the difference of opinion and move on. We will never be able to force someone to change their mind unless they are willing to do so. I know how I am, and when I am convinced that I am right and I feel good about it, there is nothing anyone can do about it. Trying to force your opinion and view on me, just makes me angry and upset because I feel like you expect me to respect you, but you are not willing to do the same in return. We can discuss it, but we have to accept that we might have to agree to disagree.

I love my family and friends, but sometimes I just can’t discuss certain things with them because I know they completely disagree with me and I don’t want to destroy my relationship with them. When they get too annoying and aggressive I can always respond in a fair but sarcastic way. πŸ˜‰

and he says

Humor helps me through a lot and the way I see it, there are always ways to make relationships work no matter how much you disagree. I have had many times when I didn’t understand how the other person can feel or think that way, but they probably think the same way about me. Aggression and hate will never be the answer. Satan wants us to follow him and he wants all of us to feel alone, unloved and miserable. We don’t have to give in to him though and can stay strong. We can do what is right, stand up for what we believe in and still cherish our loved ones even if they disapprove and disagree. Let’s show the world that love is stronger than hate, good is stronger than evil. We can do anything as long as we have God by our side.

“One individual can begin a movement that turns the tide of history. Martin Luther King in the civil rights movement, Mohandas Ganhi in India, Nelson Mandela in South Africa are examples of people standing up with courage and non-violence to bring about needed changes.” (Jack Canfield)
the greatest trick

Brexit, and my two cents…

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Obviously many are talking about the split between the UK and the EU right now. Until like 3 days ago I didn’t even know about it and was surprised when I heard what was going on. Once I learned about Brexit though, I was bombarded with many different opinions on the subject. It’s been very onesided so far, and I have yet to hear a British person explain it to me, but it is clear that a lot of European’s think that Britain just made a huge mistake, that the way they voted was plain wrong, and that it was stupid to leave.

I have to admit at first I gave in to all the negativity and agreed with those around me, but after learning a little bit more about it, and picking up bits and pieces on social media, I thought I have to hear both sides of the story before I can form an opinion.

I was born and raised in Germany, but I have lived in Scotland for a little over 1 1/2 years and then lived in the US for the past 12 years. I think because I have actually lived in different countries, and been around different cultures, it is easier for me to step back and give different sides a chance to share what they think because I learned how important it is to listen so I can fully understand why a person does what he/she does or why they think a certain way.

One thing that has been bothering me for the past years was how opinionated others are about things they know little or even nothing about. I have had several conversations with people (arguments even) in which outsiders were trying to tell me about OUR politics or things going on in OUR country and it was obvious they were trying to convince me that I had to change my mind and think like them. Ehm, excuse me, but who do you think you are? What gives you the right to tell someone who lives in the actual country, what they should vote, believe, think and feel? That person lives there and you don’t! They know better than you what is going on in THEIR own country. The best response (I am being sarcastic here) I ever got was that their media is more truthful than the media of our own country. I have to admit I was stunned for a moment that anyone could think that way, but apparently that is a pretty common opinion here in Europe. Wow. As far as I am concerned, today, you can’t really trust any media anymore because they will twist the truth as much as they have to, to make a story more exciting and “special”. It doesn’t matter where in the world you live, that happens everywhere. I believe that there are only a few journalists left who actually report the truth, but political correctness and all that garbage makes it even more difficult to be honest. The media seems to care more about a good story than the actual truth.

Each of us, who lives in a certain country, knows better than outsiders what is going on in that country. I have been away from Germany for so many years, I wouldn’t dare to tell them what they should think or feel, never mind getting involved in their politics. I don’t know enough to get involved. When you live somewhere you know what is happening and how decisions, your politicians make, effect you and what the results are for you. As an outsider you only hear what the media tells you, but you don’t know how it truly is for those who live there.

Britain voted and the people there made a decision. Whether it was a mistake or not is not for us to decide. We can have an opinion on the matter, but we should be open to listen to them as well (and I am talking about the actual people, not celebrities, the media or politicians). We don’t know why they voted the way they did and so we shouldn’t judge it. They had their reasons and instead of attacking them for what happened, maybe asking them why, would be the better way? If we try to understand their point of view, it might be easier for us to come to terms with it and who knows, you might even agree with them. Unless you walk in someone else’s shoes, and I mean you walk in those shoes and not ask another person to do it for you and then tell you what it feels like, you don’t know what it is like.

truth is knowledge

There are people out there that make uninformed decisions and vote based on what others tell them to do, but not everyone is like that. A lot of people do their research and vote (or decide) based on what feels good and right to them.

It is time for us to be more understanding. I think we can all agree that we wouldn’t want anyone else to tell us what we should vote, decide and think, so why do it to others? If we don’t want outsiders to tell us what to do, why is it okay for us to do it to them? Brexit might turn out as a bad thing, but it could also be a good thing for the people in Britain. Only time can tell and in the meantime we should make every effort to at least try to understand that there are people out there who think, believe and feel differently than we do. Tolerance goes both ways, you know. πŸ˜‰ I always like to share the actual meaning of the word tolerance since so many people don’t seem to know it: Tolerance is the willingness to accept behavior and beliefs that are different from your own, although you might not agree with or approve of them.

A little sadness is creeping in…

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It’s been a while since I have written on my blog, but due to our move lots of things have happened and kept me busy. It’s weird not to be in San Diego anymore. I enjoy the time with my family very much and I know our boys love my parents huge backyard, the time they get to spend with their grandparents and the little adventures they get to experience. It feels good to be home, but I have to admit I feel a little lost at the moment.

not until

I don’t know how I can best describe the lost feeling, but it is kind of like as if I have left a piece of my heart behind and now my heart aches every so often because it is missing that part. I want to be happy, and most of the time I am, but I feel like I lost my place as in where I truly belong. I love my German family, roots and heritage, but I am very much American now and love that beautiful country with all my heart. I feel torn between my past before marriage and love for what is part of me because of my past, and the present time in which I learned to love a completely new country, culture and future. It wasn’t an easy transition for me, and took me a long time to get there, but it happened and now I miss my new home, country and wonderful friends even though I still love my old life, now that I am back and can re-live it a little bit.

These past three weeks have been exciting, confusing and a little depressing all at once. I knew the transition wouldn’t be easy, but I am still a bit surprised to see those feelings in action and as intense as it is. All day long today I could feel how my depression was trying to creep in. It usually happens gradually and not all at once and so sometimes I can do something about it and stop it before it gets out of control. I have the tendency to listen to certain songs when I know I am close to having my depression kick in, songs that touch me in one way or another. Sometimes it can be very sad songs, other times songs that inspire and uplift. Today I came across a song from Rachel Platten. I listened to it all day long over and over again. Fight Song doesn’t exactly make me happy, but listening to the wonderful inspiring text made me realize that I can’t let the negative feelings win and have to look forward.

you will never

My time in the US was everything from beautiful and wonderful to sad and frustrating. I felt lonely, hopeless and angry, but I also felt great happiness, so much love in my heart and gratefulness for being able to be in such a special country. My heart learned to feel true patriotism and seeing things in ways I have never seen them before. Yes it hurt to leave and it was hard to go, but nobody can take away the memories I made there, the friendships I made and the experiences I had to become the person I am now. I know everything happens for a reason and living 12 years in the United States was definitely part of Heavenly Father’s plan for me. (And I will be back.) πŸ˜‰

Now I have to look forward and face whatever lies ahead of me. I am determined to embrace this new experience the same way I embraced the last twelve years and I will try to make the best of it. It is a special adventure for our whole family and many more great memories are to be made. We can only grow and learn more if we are willing to take risks and get out of our comfort zones. Heavenly Father can only bless us when we are willing to do our part and go forward with faith and trust in Him. He knows what’s best for us. We know we are here in Germany for a reason and felt it was the right thing to do at this time. I know God will continue to guide us and with time we will find out why we are here and what we are needed for.

I didn’t think my time in the US would come to an end so suddenly, but again I know it is something that happened for a reason. I am grateful for my family there and the many friendships I made. I love the people there and am thankful for all they did for me. Every memory and experience made me the person I am today.

Life is beautiful. Sometimes obstacles are put in our way, sometimes we have to go a different route – a route we didn’t think we would have to go on – and sometimes adventures are part of that path. I want to say thank you to everyone who has been part of my life and different paths. I know we met for a reason and I can’t wait for the time when our ways cross again. “Believe in yourselves, in your capacity to do something remarkable. The work of the world is done by ordinary people who have learned to work in an extraordinary way.” (one of my absolute favorite quotes)

So many feelings, and lots of emotions…

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As I am sitting here, wondering what I should do on this beautiful Sunday afternoon, I thought maybe I should write on my blog again since I haven’t done that in quite a while. These past few weeks have been an emotional roller coaster, and maybe it will help if I write some of my thoughts down.

I still can’t believe that we are actually leaving in a few weeks and that we are moving to Germany for a few years. Sometimes it seems so real and other times like a dream. Of course I am excited to be closer to family and old friends, but I am leaving so many wonderful people behind. My family and I have loved living in San Diego and so it isn’t easy to go. Thinking about having to say goodbye to many soon, makes me really sad. I have always hated goodbyes and this is a big one because we have lived in San Diego for almost 12 years and in this area alone for 7 1/2 years. The friendships we created here are special and we truly love those we leave behind.

Trying to put my thoughts into words, thinking about everything that is ahead of us and looking for picture quotes that express how I am feeling, truly doesn’t make this easier. In fact it was rather foolish to look for pictures because now I am crying mess.

I love the beautiful people I have met while living here. Every created friendship, every build relationship means something to me and I just wish I could just put them all in my suitcase and take them with me. Unfortunately I can’t. No matter how much we hate it, goodbyes are part of life. πŸ˜₯

and how lucky

Many new adventures await us, and I am excited that my family and I have the opportunity to experience many great things, but that doesn’t erase the sadness I feel about having to leave. We know it is the right thing to do, and where Heavenly Father wants us and needs us, but that only comforts us a little bit.

To all of you that are close to my heart: We love you and we will do our best to keep in touch.

the people who are

Please know that, even though I try hiding it as long as possible, it is hard for me to leave and I know my whole family feels the same way. Thank you for all you have done for us. Thank you for your kindness, love and friendships. You mean more to us than you will ever imagine. Luckily we have a few more weeks and will try to get together, with anyone interested, as much as possible. Be warned though! When we have reached the time of the final goodbye, I might not be a tough cookie anymore. I probably shouldn’t wear make-up that day. πŸ˜‰

Sometimes it is hard for me to find a good ending for my blog posts, but today I found something that ends it perfectly. Nicholas Sparks puts my feelings beautifully into words: β€œThe reason it hurts so much to separate is because our souls are connected. Maybe they always have been and will be. Maybe we’ve lived a thousand lives before this one and in each of them we’ve found each other. And maybe each time, we’ve been forced apart for the same reasons. That means that this goodbye is both a goodbye for the past ten thousand years and a prelude to what will come.” Β 

 

With the Lord’s help, any fight can be won…

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I have to admit, reading the chapters this week made me realize how little I actually knew about David and what he went through after he fought Goliath. I am sure it was heartbreaking for him to have his father-in-law constantly trying to kill him and he didn’t even do anything wrong. It is crazy what jealousy can do to a person.

It makes me sad though that Saul let that happen to himself. I find it sad, that he let Satan get a hold of his heart and have Satan take over his life. It shows how careful we have to be and that feelings like jealousy, can quickly turn into something worse if we don’t watch out and try to keep it under control.

Love is what we should strive to have in our heart for those around us. We should take Jesus Christ as the perfect example because He truly loved everyone, even those who harmed Him.

Fighting Satan is a constant battle, but we can win it, if we keep the commandments and listen to the Holy Ghost. We can see our own struggles and can notice ourselves when we are drifting off and away from the gospel. Little things that pull us away from the truth are dangerous, and we should stop and turn around as soon as we notice it.

As I was reading the story of David ,and how he had to run away, live in hiding and leave his wife behind, I kept wondering what his wife thought about all that. Was she in love with David and did it hurt her immensely when her father tried to kill him? How did she feel when her father married her off to someone else? Did she have any say in what was happening to her or did she have to do what she was told? Thinking about this makes me so grateful that I live today and not in a time when women oftentimes were treated in a manner that was very degrading. Having to obey a man’s order, no matter what they tell you to do, doesn’t sound right to me. I love that my husband has the priesthood and I do think they should be the head of the house, but they should not treat their wife as unequal.

I am so grateful to know that I am a daughter of God and that He sees me as such and treat’s me as such. I am grateful that my husband honors the priesthood, presides and serves in the home, but doesn’t use it to show off his authority. Heavenly Father loves all of us and He loves us equal. Now it is up to us to see each other that way too.