common core

image found at

image found at

(I truly am not going to even tackle the most familiar meaning of “common core”.  I am just borrowing the phrase.)

common = prevalent, occurring often

core = the central, most important part of something

my my my…the interwebs have been buzzing
transition of “power”
marches in support or protest
opinions galore, spoken and unspoken
perhaps even the emergence of questions….

I know I have some. (surprise, surprise)
and yes, I will return to “common core” and square peg in a round hole…
I guess that is just a teaser for now

Perhaps my questions are definition related…
so, let’s unpack a few words, shall we??

equality – the state of being equal, especially in status, rights, and opportunities
equity – the quality of being fair and impartial; being given what is needed to be successful

justness – the quality or state of being just, equitable, or right
justice – just behavior or treatment
just – based on or behaving according to what is morally right and fair

morality – principles concerning the distinction between right and wrong or good and bad behavior
moral – concerned with the principles of right and wrong behavior and the goodness or badness of human character
demoralized – having lost confidence or hope; disheartened

rights – that which is morally correct, just, or honorable
human right – a right that is believed to belong justifiably to every person
dehumanize – to deprive of human qualities, personality, or spirit

women’s rights – rights that promote a position of legal and social equality of women with men
legal equality – the doctrine that all persons, regardless of wealth, social status, or the political power wielded by them, are to be treated the same before the law
feminism – the advocacy of women’s rights on the ground of the equality of the sexes

– relating to the government or the public affairs of a country
public affairs – matters of general interest or concern, especially those dealing with current social or political issues
politics – the activities associated with the governance of a country or other area, especially the debate or conflict among individuals or parties having or hoping to achieve power

separation of church and state –  the principle that government must maintain an attitude of neutrality toward religion
religion – the belief in and worship of a superhuman controlling power, especially a personal God or gods
government – the system of people, laws, and officials that define and control the country that you live in

marginalized – treat (a person, group, or concept) as insignificant or peripheral.
label – a short word or phrase descriptive of a person, group, intellectual movement, etc
stereotype – a widely held but fixed and oversimplified image or idea of a particular type of person or thing

liberal – open to new behavior or opinions and willing to discard traditional values
conservative – holding to traditional attitudes and values and cautious about change or innovation, typically in relation to politics or religion
opinion – a view or judgment formed about something, not necessarily based on fact or knowledge


whew!  that is a lot of questions
a lot of words being tossed around like autumn leaves in the wind
do we even know what the fuss is about?

a divided country
a divided Church

blurred boundaries
skewed definitions

the truth is…
I often don’t know what the fuss is about

as a woman, in America, I voiced an opinion at the voting booth in November
that is how I chose to make my statement
others have chosen different means of expression
do I get it?
I must say that I honestly didn’t pay that much attention
and yet, here I am…
kind of drawn into a conversation
about justness
and equity
and grace
and mercy
and I feel stuck.

as a Christ-follower, apparently I “need” to have a certain viewpoint
(if I don’t, then there must be something “wrong” between me and God)
as a Conservative, apparently I automatically have this notion of a political side of the aisle
as a woman, where do I stand?
do I have a choice?
do I have to be “either-or”?
is there a “both-and” box to check?
is life just black-and-white?
is there no gray?

and what in the world does Jesus think about the ways in which we have been treating each other
and talking about each other
and rejecting each other
…does He get a say?

personal freedoms and choice are what make this world go around
I am thankful that I am able to write this blog
and that we can voice our own opinions
and not fear tyranny
…having said all of that, you may not agree with my viewpoint
— do you know what?  I am OK with that.  You are free not to agree.

We all have these core fears that live inside us.  And when they’re poked awake, our first inclination is to reach for some form of power to soothe the pain. – Emily Freeman

our fears are poked awake and we reach for
and a “holier-than-thou” attitude
and shaming
and disgust
and superiority


more questions…
will I as a woman ever experience equality?  is that even possible?
I don’t have an answer for that.
will I as a woman ever experience equity?
isn’t this concept what part of the fuss is about – to give everyone (regardless of race, gender, ethnicity, sexual orientation) what they need to be successful?
do I fight for justice – for everyone to get what they deserve – or am I fighting for, standing up for justness — what is just and right?
(I am more inclined to lean toward grace, getting what I don’t deserve, and mercy, not getting what I do deserve – rather than actually getting what I deserve.)

do I do my part to fight for those who are marginalized, those who are treated as insignificant
the same-sex couple
the woman who had an abortion
the person with a drug and/or alcohol addiction
the personal experiencing mental illness
those who are in physical bondage and slavery
the person who identifies as lesbian, bisexual, gay, transgender, queer, or are questioning their sexuality
the person who does not respect their spouse
the person who is living on the streets
my neighbor who lives alone
my coworker who is being abused
the student who feels shame and rejection everyday
the church member who lives with depression and anxiety
my virtual Facebook friend who has a different opinion than me?

do I not pay attention?

am I so blinded by
that the lens through which I view life
lets absolutely no truth, no light in?

lens – a ground or molded piece of glass, plastic, or other transparent material with opposite surfaces either or both of which are curved, by means of which light rays are refracted so that they converge or diverge to form an image

you see…
in all of this, the common core
is me.
all of my life experiences
all of my notions of justice and fairness
and equality and inequality
of right and wrong
morality and immorality
all of my relationships
and loyalties
they all converge on those things
and skew
the image, the issue, the debate.

and sometimes…
I am stuck being the square peg
being forced into a round hole.

Let’s agree, for just a little while anyway, that both sides are probably wrong and right in some ways.  I’m probably wrong, you’re probably wrong, and the opposite is true, because we still see through a glass darkly.  I want to approach the mysteries of God and the unique experiences of humanity with wonder and humility and a listener’s heart. – Sarah Bessey

fresh eyes
open mind
soft heart
…could this be a prescription for corrective lenses?

grace, mercy, love.






1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: corrective lenses | bitsofbetsy

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