If you walk behind them. . . Be kind.

“If you walk behind them they can’t make fun of you.”

This is what my 6 year old told his dad and I.

He walks behind everyone on his way home from school.

My heart broke hearing these words coming from my sweet son but I was not surprised.

My son has been bullied for the last year and yet he still chooses to be kind.

When your child is bulling of my son for whatever reason, he will still go out of his way to include your child and to be kind to them.

He will play with them, invited them and share with them even if they bully him. Almost every time.

Why?

Because my goal is raise him up in the way he should go so later he won’t depart from it.

It means that as a parent it’s my job to coach him and set an example for him. When he is faced with this same decision now and later in life, he chooses to be kind.

Even when he has been bullied to tears.

I’ve seen it time and time again.

There have been moments when children have made fun of the way he dresses or called him names. There have even been times they have taunted and teased him to his breaking point.

He comes to us hurt but he wipes his tears away and chooses to be kind anyway.

This is a concept lost on many but something my 6 year old understands to his core. It’s so easy to be negative and mean right back. Our reactions creates a chain and we are responsible for that.

My son chooses to show kindness instead of hate. It’s a strength I admire so much in him. Imagine if more people did this?

To be honest, it’s sometimes frustrating. But how can I be frustrated at my son who is just doing what we taught him and what his heart tells him to do?

First, your child should know better and you should be held accountable as their parents for allowing them to be bullies.

Second, I want him to stand up for himself which he does occasionally. Even then he is still so kind but he is being firm on how he deserves to be treated.

Third, I want my son to know that you do not have to surround yourself with that kind of behavior. He shows such kindness even when walking away but it’s frustrating when he shows kindness and still gets bullied over and over.

We are working on these teaching moments but there he is, with his sweet soul being kind to those that hurt him.

It’s the most beautiful thing to witness as hard as it is to deal with.

I don’t know what the world will be like when my son is old enough to be on his own. I don’t know what everyone else’s actions will be toward him. I do know this, he will not be like everyone else.

I know that right now he is walking behind them so they don’t make fun of him but soon he will be catching up to show them kindness.

I hope and pray he always chooses to be kind, always.

Megan Hardwick

I would not be here without him.

I would not be where I am in my relationship with Jesus if it had not been for my husband who leads me even when I physically and emotionally did not want to follow. It’s been 5 months since I stepped inside a church. For some that’s a long time, for others that’s nothing but for me that was significant. I never fell away from God during the most difficult season I’ve ever faced. In fact quite the opposite happened. I ran to Jesus, I soaked up His word and I prayed in pain and peace. But I was hurt by the church and what I thought was my family in Christ. Today after my husband searched and studied, we attended a beautiful church. It felt so good to be in His House again surrounded by believers, standing next to my husband. Without him, I wouldn’t be here, without Him, I wouldn’t be here.

Why are we shocked?

Why are we shocked?

I ask myself this everyday.

We live in a society where sex and drugs have been so normalized in everyday life.

We pay the singers to sing about it.

We pay the actors to act about it.

And then we show up every day to support it.

You can’t watch a movie or show without seeing drugs being used casually.

Or listen to a song without hearing women being sexualized or degraded.

We joke about it and laugh. It’s on conversations as everyday talk.

It goes on.

And yet here we are, shocked when the people live out this culture in real life.

We are shocked when there is a drug overdose.

We are shocked when there is an assault.

We are shocked when there is disrespect.

We are shocked with there is intolerance.

We are shocked when there is a sex scandal.

We are shocked.

But why?! Why are we shocked when these things happen in real life?!

We have become what we watch, listen to, read, share and post because no one is guarding their hearts or the hearts of their children.

It’s become normal in our entertainment.

To make matters worse, the moral compass has shifted so far from right and wrong that we now justify awful behavior based on who we support and who we don’t.

What’s wrong is wrong.

What’s right is right.

But we have to stop being shocked if we spend our time consumed in this type of culture.

We have to do better!

We have to guard our hearts again.

We need to be cautious about what we are taking in because we become what we consume. And we have no time to be shocked. It’s time to be proactive.

Megan Hardwick

Dear Woman, Ministries

Be still but not stationary

Dear Woman,

One of the hardest things I have ever done is be still and pray for protection for those who persecute me.

His Word says “Be still and know that I am God.”

Not stationary, but silent and trusting.

It’s like a river in the dead of night.

The sun has gone, life has settled and it’s dark. On the surface it’s so still it’s silent but underneath its moving, fast and swift in motion.

While I am still I know He is fighting for me, He is guarding me, He is moving me.

He has called you to be still because it’s building your character in the foundation of peace! And sometimes this may change the course and direction but for the best.

People are watching how you handle these seasons. The hard seasons when you want to defend yourself against the enemies of lies and attacks.

But one day you will be called back to the mountain, in an appointed time with appointed people to speak your truth in peace.

Until then, be still but not stationary.

Pray for you and pray for them.

Be kind, be calm, be quiet and know He is moving on your behalf.

Dear Woman, Ministries

Megan Hardwick

I’m sorry the church hurt you. . .

Dear Woman,

I’m sorry.

I’m sorry if the church hurt you.

I’m sorry is someone representing the church hurt you. If no one has told you, I’m sorry.

I’m sorry because I know this hurt personally.

I know what it’s like to fight the devil completely alone on the bathroom floor.

I know what it’s like to physically not be able to pull yourself together.

I know what it’s like to be the center of gossip.

I know what it’s like to be judged without a single question asked.

I know what it’s like to be treated so coldly.

I know what it’s like to be failed by the standards and expectations set by the church.

I know what it’s like to be abandoned when the devastating, hard things happens in life.

And now I know why people leave the church.

When everyone is singing about Jesus leaving the 99 to save the 1 they forget that sometimes THEY are the army He sends out.

Where people fail He is there holding true to His promise to never leave or forsake you.

I also know that the church is made up of people, imperfect people that fall short.

They are not Jesus.

If you have been hurt by the church I am sorry but please do not let that starve you from having a relationship with Him.

Something beautiful became of this hurt that I went through that changed my initial reaction to life when the hard stuff happens.

But something has to change because not all people have a faith as strong as mine was and is when I was hurt by the church. I knew who to cry out to when no one showed up. But not everyone has that strength. We are called to be His disciples which means to some extend we do not get to pick and choose who we show up for as the church.

The hurt that happened to you could be the perspective for change for the next person that walks through that church.

Please don’t lose faith.

Megan Hardwick

Dear Woman, Ministries

I Trust

I will trust You in the den of lions.

I will trust You in the pit of snakes.

I will trust You in the midsts of enemies.

I will trust You in the battle.

I will trust You in my pain.

I will trust You in the darkness of anxiety.

I will trust You company of traitors.

I will trust You in the storm.

Because the ONE who is in me is greater than the one who is in the world.

I will be still and know.

I will be still and cling to every promise you ever made me knowing You have gone before me. The victory is already won. Your perfect peace is my Hope.

Megan Hardwick

Dear Woman, Ministries

If God had told me,

If God had told me everything I would have to go through the last few years, I would have done it all completely different in order to avoid the pain. I wouldn’t have known the strength and faith I actually had in Him. The result of knowing what I would walk through would not have been the person I am today. I don’t get to choose the battles, the trials or the storms but I do get to choose who I become when I walk out of them.

Megan Hardwick

Dear Woman, Ministries 💙

Set the Table

Dear Woman,
Set the table.
The most important thing my Dad ever said to me was “Dinners at 5” and then he asked about my day. 
I carried those words with me when I became a mother. 
This is where life happens, our life, around this kitchen table. 
We gather to share meals around this table. 
But we also talk about the dreams,
our days and even the disappointments.
We have laughed and cried.
We have fought and loved. 
We have praised and disciplined. 
We have struggled and strive.
All around this kitchen table called life. 
The problem is we have moved so far away from the table. 
What used to be the center of our family is now much smaller and more distracting. 
So much that it’s demanding. 
We scroll and follow everyone else so nobody does life around a kitchen table. 
And we wonder why we didn’t see all the things that happened. 
It’s because we didn’t look they people around our table in the eye.
We stopped doing life around the kitchen table. 
I promise, the meals don’t have to be perfect. The dishes don’t have to be fancy. You just need to set the table and be present around.
Do life around a kitchen table. 
Author, Megan Hardwick

Dear Woman, Ministries

No one warned you, Mama

Dear Woman,
I know no one warned you about how hard it would be. How lonely, how isolating, how depressing, how anxious, how busy. 
This isn’t how you pictured motherhood. 
And the most difficult part of it all is trying to explain to someone why the thing that brought you the most joy has drained you. You get to be home all day and watch your babies grow, how could that make you so unhappy? 
I’m a mother and I get it so I will say it for you. 
Here’s why so many mothers suffer from depression or anxiety. Here’s why she is lonely and sometimes sad. 
You lose your sense of productivity and accomplishments, I did at least. That takes a toll when you don’t have anything to show at the end of the day. I could do a million different things from the moment I got up to the moment I sat down and you would never know it. Yes I picked up that toy, yes I cleaned up that spill, yes I got the kids dressed, yes I got them dressed again, yes I did the dishes, yes I did the laundry, yes we played, yes we made breakfast lunch dinner and 17 snacks. Yes, I did it all over and over again even when it doesn’t look like it. It’s hard when you can’t see your wins after a long day. 
Then you add the loneliness and isolation that comes with these things that need to be done. I would go days without seeing or talking to another person. I missed those deep meaningful conversations and interactions with other adults! You know the ones that make you think, that make you laugh or feel inspired and connected? 
And then just like that I was so far from me, from who I was. Now I just do the same things over and over with nothing to show for it. 
Yes I’m raising my children which I adore but I’m draining myself because I wasn’t fulfilled outside of being a mother. 
It’s doesn’t have to be this way though! 
I love being a mother and damn it, I want it to be what I dreamed it would be. 
Here’s the thing, you don’t have to sacrifice you, your self care or your identity just because you became a mom. 
All of those things contribute to being an amazing, happy mother. And I believe it’s in the best interest of our children to see us taking care of ourselves. I don’t want their most vivid memories of me being depressed and tired. But it will be if I don’t make a change because they see with little eyes. I want my babies to see me happy when I am taking care of them or the house. I also want them to see what I do when I’m not happy because I don’t want the same depression that attacks me to attack them. 
So do the things that give you life again! 
Take the gym class.
Get the part time job. 
Start a business.
Read that book.
Book a hotel for just you. 
Get together with your girls. 
Make the time for you mama and make it a priority! 
I know no one warned you but I’m here to remind you that it can be different and your happiness is just as important as anyone else’s. 
Megan Hardwick 
Dear Woman, Ministries