Tiny Dart Frog

Poison Dart Frogs are some of the tiniest and beautiful creatures on the planet; they are also incrediably deadly. So, why call this blog "Tiny Dart Frog"? It goes back to the old adage - good things come in small packages. We are all created exactly as God has intended - unique, strong, and beautiful.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


Recently I preached a sermon during which I touched on the project called "It Gets Better" .  This project is targeted at bullying in schools, specifically bullying of those who are gay or perceived to be gay.  The reason for this project...in the past few weeks there have been at least 7 reported suicides by youth who are between the ages of 12 and 16, who were bullied based on their sexuality.  

So, the "It Gets Better" project invites adults to minister to youth - to tell them that they are not alone, that this is not the end of the world, that there are people out there who will wrestle with them.  That there are blessings that come out of struggles - that things will indeed 'get better'.

As a mom of three boys ages 8-13, I am sensitive to 'sex talk' and 'suicide talk' and 'not wanting to scare them talk,' but I am also keenly aware of the fact that they live and breathe and play in the very same world that these youth did.

So, as we climbed into the van that day, after I had preached that sermon, I said, "So...does anyone have any questions about my sermon today."



"It was weird."
"Yeah.  Weird."
"I don't believe it.  That a kid would kill himself."
"I do."

Me again, "I thought I needed to say something, guys.  It's important that the church talk about things that really happen and where God is in those cruddy times."

"Yeah.  I agree."
"Yeah, you think those kids knew that God was with them?"

Me again, "Yeah.  I think they did.  Jesus knows a lot about feeling alone and the end of the world."



Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Theological Musings of an 11 Year Old

Jackson: "You know why I think God lets people do what they want?"

Me: "You mean, like 'free will'?"

Jackson: "Yeah.  Well, you know how God's eventually going to make earth part of heaven?  Well...God wants us to help make earth into heaven, so we have to learn how to do that.  And....the only way we learn is by doing.  At least that's what my soccer coach says."

Me: "So, we learn through our mistakes and successes?"

Jackson: "Yep.  But if it takes us too long, then God will just fix it or send some more angels or something.  Maybe a bunch of pastor angels."

Me: "I don't know if people turn into angels.  It says that God made humans 'just a little lower than angels'."

Jackson: "I guess, but seriously Mom, if God can make people out of dust, then I think God could make angels out of people."

Me (giggling):  "You're right, buddy.  Time for bed now..."

Jackson: "Okay.  Don't forget prayers...."

Thursday, October 7, 2010

On frogs and such

This blog has always been called the "Tiny Dart Frog," based on the beauty and strength and smallness of the poison dart frog.

When I was in college I got a poison dart frog tattoo.  I got it to remind myself that I may be tiny, but I am strong and I am okay and I am made by God.  Okay, the "made by God piece" wasn't quite formed that solidly when I was in college, but it's still true.  

But, when I got it, the tattoo was about me.  About me claiming myself.

When my youngest son was around two he began kissing my frog tattoo.  For some reason he thought tattoos are for kissing.  Once, when we were at the bus-stop another mom's tattoo was peeking out the bottom of her short's leg and he walked over and kissed her tattoo...because that's what he thought you do.  I had a bit of explaining to do.

My tattoo had become about him.  It was about him claiming me; carrying a piece of us around as he experienced the world.

When I started blogging my random thoughts, however insignificant they are, it was about sharing something more.  Something that wasn't only about me....but about God, about life.  It was about connecting all the 'me's' of the world in cyberspace. 

I've been given a lot of frogs over the past 15 years.  They sit on my desk, hang on my wall, rest on my bed, ink my body, and sometimes find their way onto the lobes of my ears.  I can tell you who gave me almost every one or where it came from.  My tattoo, which started out about me finding me, became me finding others and others finding me.  I like that.

Recently we moved and my youngest son was scared getting on the bus.  Scared is not an adequate word - terrified maybe, distraught possibly, insecure probably.  So, I grabbed the closest thing to me - my work bag.  My work bag is covered with pins and patches.  Quickly I unpinned a little frog pin and fastened it on his pocket.  

I pin that frog pin to him everyday right now.  I wish I didn't have to.  I wish he didn't need that visible reminder, but he does, at least for now.  I know what that's like - to need a reminder.  Heck, a pin is a whole lot less permanent than a tattoo.

It's little bit of me attached to him.  And in some ways, it's a little bit of you too, because all of us have our insecurities, worries, and fears.  Pinned to him right now is the whole "you may be tiny but you can do this" piece.  A little courage in his pocket.  A little you are loved and beautiful and made by God tacked on him.

Frogs and whispers.  Birds and songs.  Me and you.  These are the things that get us through and make us who we are.  May you learn who that person is and may you help someone find who they are.