And Then a Riot Broke Out in Target! 2

And Then a Riot Broke Out in Target!

I was dropping Sophie (our 13-year-old) at piano lessons, and one of the toddlers said, “bye-bye Bobbie! I wub you. Dank du!” Another toddler responded, “No! Bebe, you using da wrong WORBS! It’s bye-bye GOGIE! And you don’t say dank you to her. She didn’t gib you nuffin’…”

The wrong words.

I had 126 messages this morning when I woke up. An Open Letter to My Children has gone out into the cyber world and had itself a heck of a run. This morning it had been viewed 500,000 times on Word Press.  It was republished on For Every Mom and has been shared over 7,000 times on that site.  And while some of you may think that is a crying shame let me use my words to say a few things.

I can’t sing but I can write.  And I may not be a Pulitzer author or Jen Hatmaker, but I love words.   I love Jesus.  I love my husband and my children.  I love my parents (Hi! Mom and Daddy!).  I have a lot of love.  My life can be viewed as a tragedy or a comedy.  I choose the comedy.  I choose joy.  I choose laughter.  And I choose my words.

So this morning as I was buzzing about delivering kids to school  I found myself in the turning lane on a very busy street. I was about to “gun it” through the last of the green light when my car stalled.  In my rearview mirror, I see the Chevy behind me jolt to a stop as he was, evidently, planning on following me through the remnant permissible traffic light.  Heart racing, I desperately try to re-start the car – nothing.  Another driver, unaware that I am not able to move, swerves to miss me.  My life and the lives of the babies flashes before my eyes. Today I die.  Braless, in my fuzzy slippers, outside my alma mater. The near miss is so close I can see the spinach omelet still wedged into my would-be killer’s teeth.  BTW – dude have you ever heard of a nose hair trimmer?  Again, I try frantically to start my car.  Nothing.  I am right next to the University track, and two students are jogging past.  I step out, attempting to shield my uncontained, pajama-clad, boobs from onlookers and yell “Can you please help get me out of the street?  I have babies in the car!”  Thank God for these two;  I was in real trouble.  Also,  while we are on the subject, honking and cussing does no good people.  I am fully aware that my car is in your way.

The girls save our lives, nearly being killed themselves, and I get back into the car and cry.  Maybe it was the near-death experience.  Maybe it is that this week has been a roller coaster. Or maybe it’s that I realize why my car stalled, and now – I will be killing one of my children.  No matter the justification, I am going to jail.  So, I cry.  Heave sobs. The babies sit, confused by the scenario.  I fire off a text to the culprit.  “COME GET ME NOW!?!?!  I AM OUT OF GAS….”  

I sit and cry and process. I want to use the appropriate words when the guilty party arrives to convey the gravity of the situation. I used very precise words the night before when I lent out my car, with gas money, because it was on empty. But then I realize she had pulled up already and saw me crying.  There’s no need for words.  There’s a subtle mom glare, and a flippant, “Where’s the gas money I gave you?” But otherwise, she’s my daughter, and my friend and we all make mistakes.  Heck, I ran out of gas twice this summer, all on my own.

All this to be said, I have a choice of how to use my words.  Sometimes I might mess up, sometimes I might hit the nail on the head.  I fully relinquish my platform to Jesus.  And while many have found offense with my choice of words in “An open letter to my children,” many were blessed, and a few just thought it was funny.  But I want my words to matter.  I want them to do glory work.  I want to start a riot.  And you know what?  I have gotten 160 emails from women asking why the foster baby was only in our home for the weekend?  And I got to say, “It is called respite foster care, and here is how it works…”All of them said, “I AM GOING TO DO THAT!!!  And now a possible 160 foster families will have new resources for a much-needed break.

And so I feel those words weren’t the wrong words.

I may not have single-handedly stopped the seat-savers at recitals, and I may have been snarky, but if only one person stopped and thought “Hmmm.” then my words were sufficient.  This slays me.  So, call me arrogant.  Call me self-righteous.  Fight amongst yourselves. What is the point of words?  To inspire? Infuriate? Motivate? Communicate?  I guess I am most struck by the ugliness. I never thought the piece about home births was anything but comic relief?  I had no idea that the natural childbirth community would rally against me?  But there was one, just one, that emailed and said, “I read your piece on home births, I hated it, but I kept reading.  Could you tell me what adoption agency you used in Texas? My husband and I want to do that.”

And so I feel those words weren’t the wrong words.

Start a riot.  Start a movement.  Follow your calling.  We can’t all survive Ebola. But if Kent and Amber Brantly hadn’t stepped out in the calling, what a real tragedy that would be? And if their decision to be missionaries helps others in that calling –SUCCESS! If we all sit back and do nothing, say nothing, how will we ever get the word out about the Lord – my Jesus?  By all means talk about it!  Say what you mean and mean what you say.  I have struggled with the words that have been said about me, and certainly about my family.  I will say I cannot monitor other sites, but I can monitor mine.  You are wasting precious time sending me an 8,000-word manifesto on why I am going to hell.  I am raising babies for the Kingdom, if I am going to take the time to read 8k words, it will be something uplifting.  And profanity will not see the light of day on my blog.  If you insist on spouting the F-bomb, I recommend you: 1.  Look into a good psychiatrist and a prescription mood stabilizer.  2.  Start your own blog. Apparently, you have something to say. (Invest in a good thesaurus first.)  3.  Stop saving seats with duct tape.  It’s against the rules.  

I guess if you see that someone is a Christian you expect them to be sugary sweet all the time.  Remember Jesus in the boat?  The disciples were all crying “WE ARE GOING TO DIE!”  I always picture Him rolling His eyes “Are you so dull?  I am in the boat?”  A snarky and relaxed banter.  He calms the sea, gives them a good long stare, rolls over to doze off, and they hear Him whisper, “Idiots.”

Follow me as I embark on my next writing challenge during October: 31 Days Of Stuff I Wish You’d Stop Saying: DAY 1 “When is your baby due?”

 May your floors be sticky and your calling be ordained.  Jami

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  1. Shann on September 30, 2015 at 2:11 pm

    Love your writing! Haters gonna hate! LOL

    • jamiamerine on September 30, 2015 at 2:11 pm

      Thanks friend!

      • Lori Smith on January 15, 2019 at 8:10 am

        As a mother of 5 bios, 2 adopted and countless fosters…AMEN! To it all. When we choose to SHOW our kids how to care for others, show them how to let our hearts be broken by what breaks the heart of God himself….we create the most decent people on earth.
        BTW, so far I am 0 for 3 on the professional glamour photo sessions for my kids who survived their senior year of high school without feeling like airbrushed supermodels. And let’s not even get started on youth SPORTS! GAH.
        Following you now, sister. <3

  2. scarlett on September 30, 2015 at 2:20 pm

    I made your ” an open letter to my children, you’re not that great” my eight year olds reading log assignment….I am not clear if she understood so much, …but ..she deemed it Non-fiction and as to why…she named the kids, quoted she loved them equally, and the “Love mom”….for her reasons….I LOVED IT!! considering we got the short end of the stick on a 3rd grade teacher….I cannot wait to see what happens.
    ‘Let the first become the last, let the poor put kings to shame’ is my next tattoo….jk…maybe.

  3. lucindasutherland on September 30, 2015 at 2:23 pm

    Great writing. I especially like your take on Jesus in the boat with His disciples. I am so glad that Jesus still puts up with idiots.

    • Crose on September 28, 2016 at 10:30 am

      I’m glad Jesus puts up with idiots, because I NEED Him to put up with me.

  4. Kathie Ehlers Goodrich on September 30, 2015 at 2:50 pm

    Grinning from ear to ear inspired by you yet again Jami, My Friend!

  5. Michelle Westover on September 30, 2015 at 3:24 pm

    I really wish people would read the whole story and get the gist of what you’re saying. The cumulative of the message and not the knit-picking of each individual words. You’re writing is funny, uplifting, Jesus inspired and true. “Speak the truth in love” and I’ll keep listening with an open heart.

    • jamiamerine on September 30, 2015 at 3:26 pm

      Thanks Michelle. I appreciate that you took the time to write. ❤️

  6. Kim Pringle on September 30, 2015 at 4:26 pm

    I think I’m in love with:
    Your words,
    Your passion,
    Your use of your words and your passion,
    And how you use it all for Gods glory!
    I WILL be reading again!

    • jamiamerine on September 30, 2015 at 4:35 pm

      I love you back. I feel like I have 100 new best friends.

  7. moisyswindell on September 30, 2015 at 3:33 pm

    Jamie whilst I do not necessarily have the same beliefs as you in such a strong way, I do believe in God, but not in as strong a way as you, and I do swear; your words still make me laugh (in a good way), make me smile, and I loved your open letter to your children. So much so I copied it into my commonplace book as something to inspire me.

    You are right, you have the right to write what you want, (so many rights it must mean something!) if people don’t like it, don’t read it. If you touched a nerve with them, perhaps they should stop and ask themselves why. But they won’t because that would be too frightening for them.

    Keep going start that riot, don’t be a sheeple.

    • jamiamerine on September 30, 2015 at 3:34 pm

      I love you friend. ❤️ #riot

  8. Rebecca Brady on September 30, 2015 at 3:34 pm

    I sure hope Jesus loves the snarky. I got blessed with an extra helping of my own. And I love you.

  9. tracibarton on September 30, 2015 at 3:36 pm


    I agree and appreciate your thoughts here. Congratulations on a great post that got so many talking, and you didn’t have to use profanity to do it! I am a new fan. And, a kindred spirit. Because I often find humor among my own kind – crazy parents and try to not be one of them – and usually (sometimes) I succeed. I was one who commented, but definitely not a ‘hater’. Your post caused me to realize that often I do the same thing in humor without taking a moment to ask myself what could be behind that behavior. So, I thank you for that. You caused me to self-examine. Always a good thing. And, I love the humor and think often we look to be offended and we are never disappointed.


  10. pkadams on September 30, 2015 at 3:50 pm

    Lol, I knew people would get pissed. But you were right and they can s*ck it. I mean, let’s pray for them.

    • Bonnie on October 1, 2015 at 10:50 am

      In the South, we just say, “Bless their hearts.” IOW “What stupid idiots. But bless ’em anyway, LORD.”

  11. Linda H Marichal on September 30, 2015 at 3:54 pm

    I am among the many that loved and shared your letter – after I finished laughing! I think this post is also wonderful – I would so be that braless woman crying in the stalled car angry at my teen! I shall be sharing/ linking and encouraging followers to come check you out. May the Lord bless you and keep you girl!

    • jamiamerine on September 30, 2015 at 4:12 pm

      Thank you. That means the world!

  12. Kelli on September 30, 2015 at 4:09 pm

    Hey Jami…I feel like I know because of our mutual love of Amy and Angie. Didn’t know you blogged though until Amy reposted yesterday. Girl! I love your words, snarky humor, and bold truth. I had a snarky post go viral last year and it FREAKED me out so bad I didn’t write for awhile. Love your courage to write all the words that bubble up anyway. Blessings and may you succeed in screening out the weirdos. There are just so many.

  13. Cheryl on September 30, 2015 at 4:30 pm

    I just met you today and I love you already. Thank you for sharing your joy!

  14. Kim Halfmann on September 30, 2015 at 5:14 pm

    Haters are going to hate… They are the ones missing out on an amazing thing!! I’m blessed to stay I know and love such a beautiful soul. Love you Friend!! You are doing awesome!

  15. Melanie Jeanne on September 30, 2015 at 5:28 pm

    Loved your article – in fact, loved both! Sometimes I write things people don’t like – but much of what God whispers in secret is supposed to be shouted from the rooftops! (I shout from my blog so I don’t get committed) ;o) Keep on writing sister – you have something to say! <3

  16. Yolanda on September 30, 2015 at 6:19 pm

    Just read you for the first time today. But not the last time. We all could use a heaping dose of humility. The world would be a better place. Keep writing!

  17. zoebst on September 30, 2015 at 6:43 pm

    So much love for you, friend!! Loved this!

  18. Kathy on September 30, 2015 at 7:41 pm

    I loved yesterday’s blog but today’s is even better. Among other things I love that a word or phrase, totally off topic, catches someone’s attention and there are now over 100 potential respite care-givers.

    I am a rule follower, too, and raised our kids to know they were loved by me above all other children but they weren’t better than all others so your words, humor, and snark made me feel like a Kindred Spirit.

    God Bless. Your blog is a ministry and blessing.

  19. Carol on September 30, 2015 at 8:03 pm

    500,000 shares on Word Press, 7,000 on “For Every Mom” and that doesn’t include the pikers like me that took the link and sent it to each of her kids. LOL Then I read it out loud to my hubby. I have been at recitals like that far more times than I want to remember. I am so thrilled you did the better thing and blogged about it. Most likely, I just murmured, grumbled and probably had the entire evening ruined because I couldn’t let it go. I would rather have chosen your route and found a way to laugh. Thank you for the great example and encouragement you are. And don’t stop.

  20. Dawn on September 30, 2015 at 8:27 pm

    I. Love. You.


  21. melodyereeves on September 30, 2015 at 9:39 pm

    I love what you say and how you say it!!

  22. Marley on September 30, 2015 at 8:44 pm

    Oh my gosh – someone shared your open letter to your kids with me, read that and thought it was so hilarious, and then went to this post and its even funnier. Just imagine if Erma Bombeck was still here and writing her wonderful stories, some people would be knocking her – I am definitely going to keep following your blog.

  23. annbf on September 30, 2015 at 8:58 pm

    I think you are really funny! The world needs a better sense of humor — write on!

  24. tatyduff on September 30, 2015 at 9:07 pm

    I always like to say “It’s my job to spread the gospel. So that’s what I’m gonna do. I’m a sinner that needed a savior and God’s still refining me on how it all comes out.” 🙂
    Your words are terrific. Keep at it. We’re not at it for the approval of man, but to point others in the direction of the savior and to honor the one true King!
    Many Blessings

    • jamiamerine on September 30, 2015 at 9:09 pm

      Blessings on you too friend!

  25. Cat Sasser on September 30, 2015 at 9:08 pm

    Oh my word… Who on Earth are you, woman!? I love you! haha #keeponkeepingon

    • jamiamerine on September 30, 2015 at 9:09 pm

      Just a mom… Hi Cat!

      • Cat Sasser on September 30, 2015 at 9:12 pm

        Same here. 🙂 I found you via a friend’s link up to your “controversial” post. Thanks for just being you. (Can we all just do more of that?!) Love it!

  26. Dirt Road Wife on September 30, 2015 at 9:18 pm

    First of all, I’m so happy I’ve found your blog. Your writing is entertaining. It’s funny. It’s true. It’s snarky. And it’s full of the things I think in my head but don’t dare put on paper or a blog because of what you’ve experienced…so kudos to you for being brave enough to put it out there. And for being brave enough to leave it out there. It’s hard enough to read constructive criticism of what we write, but to weather the storms of personal attacks by people who have never met you takes real courage and faith.

    Second, thank you for opening up a conversation about humility, reality and service to others. It is a conversation we need to have daily with ourselves and our children.

    Third, I’m going to go get my bra out and put it with my clothes for the morning run to preschool. Because you know, just in case…

    Keep on keepin’ on. Can’t wait to read more!

    • jamiamerine on September 30, 2015 at 10:00 pm

      Thank you. And thank you for taking the time to respond! I need to go lay out my bra too… Night! Love, Jami

  27. Angela on September 30, 2015 at 9:23 pm

    I just stumbled across your blog tonight. I’m a big followerer of Kara Tippetts blog ‘Mundane Faithfulness’ and one thing lead to another….your writing makes me laugh. God is so good to fill our cups with laughter and love. Thank you ❤️❤️

  28. Melodye on September 30, 2015 at 9:37 pm

    Love what you say and the way you say it!!!

    • jamiamerine on September 30, 2015 at 10:03 pm

      Thank you! Love your name! So pretty!

  29. Travisann Murrell-Davis on September 30, 2015 at 9:47 pm

    When your words paint the story with such clarity, you know you have a talent gifted by God.

  30. janetwhite on September 30, 2015 at 9:56 pm

    Oh, my, Jami, I was going to comment on your last post, but before I got around to it, it was viral! But I’ve been musing a lot on the dilemma parents have to teach our children that they are valued, precious people (just as they are) who are loved with an unfathomable love by the God of the universe, but at the same time, they are not the center of that universe. And as much as I adore them, they are not the center of my universe, either. I could look at dozens of pictures of them (and have the scrapbooks to prove it), but not everyone in the cyber world really cares to see dozens of selfies of them, to say nothing of pics of everything they had to eat. So preach on, sister! You always make me laugh, and even think a little. If one foster baby is loved on or one person is drawn to Jesus because of your words, all the negative words will pale in comparison. BTW, I just finished the Brantleys’ book and saw your shout out! Congratulations on your “fame!”

    • jamiamerine on September 30, 2015 at 10:04 pm

      One of my favorite mamas. You are dear.

  31. mckelvie12 on September 30, 2015 at 10:01 pm

    I love your words and the comments of your readers. It must be so much fun to hear what others are thinking about your post. I’m amazed by the intelligence and well thought out comments of the lovers – at the same time amazed by the shallow, and petty comments of the haters. You rock. Love

  32. sdjunion on September 30, 2015 at 10:15 pm

    Thank you for being normal and a decent human being. Keep on rocking those bunny slippers and being you. Thanks for bringing some joy in my life and more than a couple of smiles through your writing. I thank you.

  33. JC on September 30, 2015 at 11:33 pm

    i am new to your blog. I really enjoyed it. I don’t understand why you titled this article And then a riot broke out in target!

  34. Pamela Gammill on October 1, 2015 at 4:56 am

    I’m glad your post went viral and I found out about you. I loved your post and will be sharing with others!

  35. sg on October 1, 2015 at 9:50 am

    I went to ACU we have scads of mutual friends. I don’t know you, but I think I would love you if I did! Please don’t let the terrorist win…Write on my friend of a friend! You have much to say and I like the way you say it. “Snarky” is my favorite of the bittersweet “fruits of motherhood”… but only when I am serving it! When you are a little consider snarky but with a point, with a purpose, with a calling? That’s just spunky wisdom. Battle on warrior writing Mom. 🙂

  36. donna on October 1, 2015 at 10:42 am

    Oh my sweet Jami! Thrilled to meet you and your fabulous blog.
    Write on, sister! Write on!!

  37. Melissa G on October 1, 2015 at 11:06 am

    Absolutely loved reading this and the Open Letter piece! Thank you for standing strong, brave, and proud for Moms and Christians everywhere! So much soul and wisdom in your writing! What an encouragement your words are…THANK YOU and keep on writing beautiful warrior!

  38. Carol Pack Urban on October 1, 2015 at 11:22 am

    I knew exactly what you were saying! I saw many of the same families when I took my granddaughter for dance lessons. Self absorbed, whiney, over privileged children and parents alike. I wanted my granddaughter to enjoy herself. I didn’t plan on it being her life’s work or anything.

  39. kristy on October 1, 2015 at 12:42 pm

    where have you been? 🙂
    thank you for so many “right” words!
    i am now looking into respite foster care AND passing that info on!

    • jamiamerine on October 1, 2015 at 12:45 pm

      Great! I am creating a page of references!

  40. Laura on October 1, 2015 at 4:37 pm

    Tears and laughter. …..thank you for both.

    I fully believe that our Lord and Savior has a great sense of humor. I have 9 yr old twin boys and a 10 yr old boy, trust me, he laughs A LOT. Without them and Him i would be lost.

    Your new fan & sister in Christ,

  41. B.K. on October 1, 2015 at 7:00 pm

    Reminds me of the time my dad’s car had stalled and the angry driver behind him kept honking his horn. Dad got out of his car and went up to the annoying fellow and said, “You know, if you can go up there and get my car started for me, I would be glad to sit back here and honk your horn for you!”

  42. Lisi on October 1, 2015 at 7:57 pm

    “There’s no where to go but down if we as a society continue to treat mediocrity as mighty.” I am going to paint this in huge letters on a board and hang it in my house so my four year old grows up seeing it as a mantra. I have never attached to anyone’s blog or website where I wanted to come back and keep reading or listening till you. Fantastic. Keep it up. Can’t wait to keep reading.

  43. Rosie on October 1, 2015 at 9:12 pm

    “Idiots.” ……bwahahahahaha!

  44. Maire on October 2, 2015 at 12:00 am

    First, I have to say, I was looking at different pages when I was practicing my linky thing… and saw yours…and dreamed of having such a nice, calming,and really pretty page! I love the pops of red and loved the button you made… Now, I read this post and was laughing and crying at the same time.. I know the feeling about the kid with the car… and no gas…and I could hear your kids chattering… and the love you have within your heart. Thanks for such a wonderful post!
    And to BK…. We ran out of gas once and the person behind us was honking, my mother, sweet and quiet Mom… yelled out the window, Come try to start this and I’ll honk at you for a while! LOL…. bless her heart, she was flustered!

  45. Mariann on October 2, 2015 at 7:24 am

    Truth always meets resistance. I’ve never seen your posts until today, but I’m cheering you on. Americans have completely lost the art of respectful discussion. Christians don’t have any option BUT to engage in respectful discussion when they disagree. That’s kind of a basic tenet of the Bible. (If you have something against another person, go to that person. It’s in there!) “Airing” grievances in ugliness is a mighty big score for Satan. Let’s not give him the win!! He already LOST.

  46. Neysa Aiken on October 2, 2015 at 9:51 am

    Your words make me feel like I’m not alone. We have ALL been there, some of us just choose to hide it, rather than learn from it and revel in it. LOVE YOUR POSTS!!

  47. Kathy Schwiebert on October 2, 2015 at 9:59 am

    Jami – beautifully, funny, poignant writing. As a retired teacher, let me tell you what I see of those “special” children when their cheering section isn’t around – most of them are terrifically insecure – they tend to be quiet, second guess themselves a lot, and are afraid to take chances. Some of them are angry, very angry – and they can’t figure out why the rest of the kids don’t think they are as special as their parents make them feel. Some of the girls will do almost anything to get attention and some of the boys get in fights. Their parents are always angry, disappointed, fed up with the teachers and admin. Fortunately, my colleagues and I see and understand this. We compliment these kiddoes on skills they improve on, we encourage them genuinely when they fail, and we reprimand them privately when they make bad choices. We talk to them and love them as the children they are at this moment – not the future dancer/singer/sports star of their parents’ dream. Keep speaking the truth !!

  48. Jean on October 2, 2015 at 11:41 am

    I’m not a Christian per se, though I was raised Catholic. I do curse quite a bit, but never on someone’s blog in the comments, that would be rude! I absolutely loved the message in your open letter. Especially “My prayer for you is that you came to serve, not be served.” This resonates in more than a religious way with me, my husband has set an amazing example of volunteerism for our five children and myself. Thank you for using your words, they’re meaningful and inspiring!

  49. christiecroChris on October 4, 2015 at 7:18 am

    Yes, yes and yes. I’ve also printed out your original open letter… am seriously considering having each of my kids read it.

  50. BJ on October 4, 2015 at 9:56 am

    I am not Christian , Catholic , Muslium, or Jewish. I claim no religion, but I applaud your letter and your attitude toward your children. We need more mothers like you. Our future depends on it.

  51. ManicMom on October 4, 2015 at 10:55 am

    This was lovely. I’m sorry your open letter drew criticism. I loved it. It is hard, as bloggers, to receive negative feedback that’s so personal. Your writing is a blessing.

  52. The Garners on October 4, 2015 at 3:20 pm

    Loved Open Letter! (This post too) I’m on my fifteenth year of piano recitals, and have endured countless talent-less shows, and thought I’d seen everything. 🙂 But your real point, about being less than and not greater than, is so counter cultural right now, and so important, and so true and someone needs to be saying it – so thanks!

  53. jamiamerine on October 5, 2015 at 12:39 am


  54. AMKGVA on October 5, 2015 at 10:13 am

    Laughed my head off. Love it and you sell christian sprituality as well as anyone I’ve ever read!

  55. vanalee on October 6, 2015 at 1:34 pm

    Thank you! I am glad so glad that i found your blog. Someone needs to be saying this and I am not as eloquent as you are. Plus, no one listens to old ladies anyway!

  56. Carrie on October 11, 2015 at 8:30 am

    I don’t know how many times I’ve told my children I enjoyed your singing but just remember you will never ever be on American Idol and say but everybody tells me I’m wonderful singer. Being brutally honest with your own family is very important I don’t want my children leaving my nest thinking that they are God’s answer. If anything in most societies rubs we are God’s question. People look at us in question as Christians, why did they do that? Or how do they do that? Hopefully we have answers for them if we are good mindful Christians. You are thoughtfully provoking I appreciate your writing, I appreciate God’s gift in you!

  57. Ren on October 12, 2015 at 12:17 am

    First, thank you for the encouragement about saying what you feel needs to be said. I have been known to say it like it is with a little snark and unyielding directness. I’ve lost followers and friends alike. . . and gained followers and friends too. And, people who say, “Huh, I never thought of it that way before” to which I think, “YIPPY, best compliment you could give!”
    AND, because I know how that feels, I will say bravo to you about how you handle comments. I do the same thing. If someone wants to rail against me they can go do it on their own blog. . . that’s what I do 😉

  58. debbyshehane on October 15, 2015 at 5:41 am

    Keep writing.

    • jamiamerine on October 15, 2015 at 5:44 am

      God bless you. Getting ready to attend writers conference. 1. I hate to fly. 2. Leaving my family to go pursue… 3. What if?

      You just nudged me forward. Literally. Just this second.

      But if I die in a fiery crash – just delete this. ❤️

  59. Kellie M on October 15, 2015 at 8:39 am

    Your child who forgot to gas up the car will one day remember his/her actions… and help someone else who had broken down or run out of gas. There is great humor in this post and hopefully, because you responded in love to your daughter, a lesson she will apply later in her own life. I remember when a stranger (a man) stopped and helped me when I ran out of gas as a college student many years ago. I know I will be able to pass on his kindness in my own life and I pray your daughter will be able to pass on kindness to someone stranded in the furture because she knows it’s a big deal to be in that situation. In the meantime, I pray she keeps the needle UP on the gas-o-meter in the car and everyone has safe travels. 🙂

    • jamiamerine on October 15, 2015 at 8:42 am

      Thank you. And thank you for your input on the last thread. I try not to read many of them… But you understood my point. When I wrote that piece I had a whooping 200 followers. For whatever reason it’s gone mad… I appreciate your mind. God bless.

  60. Cold Case Lover on October 23, 2015 at 8:41 pm

    Quite an echo chamber you’ve got here. Must be nice to only ever hear pretty words agreeing with you instead of any sort of disagreement or opposition. Very nice. Very dishonest.

    • jamiamerine on October 24, 2015 at 9:06 am

      Dear Cold Case, this is a minimally read post. If you’d like to chill with the haters they are over in the “an open letter to my children” feed. In that feed of comments I am very honest about what I allowed. Anything – as long as there was no vulgarity. I actually love dialogue. And all things cold case… So… Thanks for stopping by.

  61. Sohailah Stout on April 13, 2016 at 9:28 pm

    I shared your open letter with my “atheist” office mate and she agreed with every word. AGREEMENT. On EVERYTHING. She claims to be the most liberal, non-Jesus person ever, but I’m believing for a reversal and she AGREED with every word. Per HER words. Thanks

  62. Amy M on April 17, 2016 at 7:55 am

    I absolutely loved your Open Letter & this response post. So unbelievably true!!! Thank you for being bold & writing them. Have you read Kevin DeYoung’s Just Do Something? It’s a short, quick yet powerful & fantastic read. I think you’ll like it!

    • jami_amerine on April 17, 2016 at 8:04 am

      Thanks Amy! I’ll look into it!

  63. Lisa on April 17, 2016 at 8:25 am

    I don’t usually comment on your blog. I didn’t comment on the Open Letter. But I didn’t like it.


    Because while veiled as an “open letter” to YOUR children about how it’s okay to have less than, or fear, or anything else…. it spent an enormous amount of time criticizing and belittling a family you did not know. For their choices.

    They ‘broke the rules’. Okay.

    But you went on to pick on everything about them from the balloons, to the family names for them, to her name, to the t-shirts. You made it point to call her a “chubby 5 year old”.

    You don’t know their backstory. You have no idea if this family was told they were never having children. You have no idea if she’s the first girl in a line of 10 boys. You have no idea if she has overcome illness. You have no idea if the family was told she would never walk. You have no idea if she is just very doted on.

    And, it’s none of your business, either.

    You did not need to put down another family or their choices, and then hide behind “I’m a Christian here are some proverbs to prove it”.

    What you needed to do if you wanted to discuss this is discuss your values and your message to your children sans insults and put downs to others.

    That is what got people outraged. That is what made people drop “F Bombs’. While you may not have sworn (and that doesn’t make you more Christian or better) you did precisely what they did to you. You insulted and demeaned another family while exhaulting yourself making it a point to mention the foster child, making it a point to place yourself in a position above those you were critiquing.

    And that is not humble. That is not Christian. That is not kind. That is not “snarky and cute’.

    Try Proverbs 19:29

    The message to your children by the way was on point. It’s okay to fall. It’s okay to be scared. It’s okay to not have a parade for everything they do. It’s okay to strive for that. It’s okay to work harder.

    The crux of your entire post that day to me? Was “I forgot to fill out the form……”. Kylie’s family clearly didn’t. And for the rest of the post… it seemed a lot like defending your own error.

    The reality is that there is nothing wrong with your choices. Or even making a mistake like forgetting the form. Or not bringing balloons and flowers.

    But there is also nothing wrong with a family celebrating their child in the manner they chose.

    That is what you were missing.

    • Linda Thompson on April 17, 2016 at 5:52 pm

      I enjoyed the Riot story. I agreed with Jami’s comments to and about her children. However, I agree completely with Lisa about making bad comments about the other family. Jami did not say she knew this other family at all and she probably does not know anything about them! One of the main things I have understood from the teachings of Jesus, is to love one another. You could also try “walk a mile in their shoes”. Just do not put people down when you do not know them.
      I certainly appreciate the things you say about your family and Jesus! Keep up the good work.

  64. Kim on April 18, 2016 at 1:37 am

    My heart hurt after reading the original article, and wasn’t much better after this one. I feel so sad for you that this is who you see Jesus to be and what you want for your children and what you think your Heavenly Father wants for you. My husband and I were reading this and this was his response.
    “As much as it hurts me – feel less than. Esteem not yourself. Feel lonely. Feel unworthy. Feel unaccomplished. Feel small. Feel lost. Feel broken.
    Feel least.”

    I didn’t like this part. None of these things are things that Christ says about us. In Christ we aren’t less than…we are more than conquerors. I don’t have to esteem myself because the God of creation holds his children in the highest esteem. We aren’t lonely because we were given the Holy Spirit. We are worthy because he made us worthy. We aren’t unaccomplished because Christ said that we would do the same and greater works. We are not small because the God who cannot be contained in the whole of the universe chose to make his home in us. We once were lost but now we are found. We are no longer broken but instead have been restored to the original plan. We are not least because God looks at each one of his children and calls them his favorite.

    Many Christians these days seem to ignore when the Bible says that we have been crucified with Christ and that We No Longer Live but Christ now lives in us. Remember what God says about you!

    Praying that you are able to see His heart for you today. And no, Jesus uses kind words and calling someone an idiot under their breath is not kind.

  65. Emily on April 18, 2016 at 6:06 pm

    I’ve been blogging for years, and I’m always terrified to write anything even remotely controversial. The funny thing is, whenever I do, those are the posts I get the most positive feedback on. This post was a great push for me to write what really matters to me, even if the world may not agree with it. Thanks for being brave enough to put yourself out there and speak your mind honestly!

  66. Allison Armstrong on April 19, 2016 at 8:02 am

    I’ve never read your blog before, but a friend shared it. I appreciate each word. God is so good, and so much bigger and more mighty than our brains can fathom. If we saw Him, we’d be stunned to silence, but He shows us just enough that we will speak out in praise. You are doing the right thing. It’s your heart the Lord sees and I see it too. You have a good one. Keep saying the wrong thing.

    • jami_amerine on April 19, 2016 at 8:06 am

      Thanks, really needed a kind word this morning. May the Lord bless and keep you.

  67. Danielle K on April 20, 2016 at 8:34 am

    I love your writing style and your fearlessness to tell it like it is. My kids are 25 and 27, and I have to say that I kinda saw myself in the “you’re not that great” post – and it was very uncomfortable. Not to the extent of the family you described by any means, but cheerleading, swimming, track, honors choir…we were at everything and I yelled myself hoarse many times. Well not at the choir concerts….but I can’t tell you how many times I wanted to say exactly what you did to other people. But I was guilty too…that’s why what you said was uncomfortable. Oh to have a do-over! My daughter has found her way and is a very confident, married young woman who loves Jesus and is using her experiences and true talents. My son, not so much…”big fish, little pond” to “little fish, big pond” and has come out wounded, not interested in spiritual things much at all. I pray for his heart, that God would bring him back to Himself. And believe what God says about him, not anyone else. I think that’s my takeaway – it’s more important who they are (a person of integrity, kindness, patient, showing love, hard working, etc.), then what they do. Keep telling it like it is!

  68. Leslie Jenkins on April 20, 2016 at 11:13 pm

    I liked the original post, but I really love the response to the responses! I always wonder what situation I’m going to find myself when I pick a kid up after a late night school event while wearing my baggy, plaid pajama bottoms.

    • jami_amerine on April 21, 2016 at 6:25 am

      Inevitably, I end up having to see someone .

  69. Stephanie Byrd on January 1, 2017 at 2:40 pm

    You are my new favorite blogger! I loved this and the open letter you posted. Keep doing you mama. You’re killing it!

    From one mama raising a kid for Jesus to another!

    • jami_amerine on January 1, 2017 at 2:43 pm

      Thanks friend!

  70. Kristin Hay on January 8, 2017 at 11:14 pm

    So well said. And if people are going to be so offended, they can find a “safe space” somewhere. I loved your commentary on the child-centeredness of this generation… It was hilarious because it was so spot on! Keep writing and speaking the name of Jesus–the King of kings who spoke truth in love, yet still offended people.

    • jami_amerine on January 9, 2017 at 3:40 am

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