Fall Chalkboard, Shelf Vignette, and #Anti-Troll

I have a frenemy named Facebook. You probably know him. Often up to no good and yet somehow you can’t look away.

I get sucked into reading those trending articles sometimes. Lots of them actually- the good, the bad, and the ugly. And y’all, I read some of the mean, ugly “troll” comments on so many articles out there and just want to reach through the screen and hug that person…or at least offer them a cupcake. That’s probably not the normal reaction to treat a bully that way.

Fall Chalkboard and Shelf Vignette | Bless'er House - Cute way to create changeable art out of an old window, a wood plank, and rope!

But the longer I stay in this blogging thing, the more often I get the occassional “troll”. It’s rare. But it hurts no matter how thick-skinned I try to be. I’ve been called a “disgrace” for painting a piece of wood furniture. Or “tacky” because someone doesn’t like what I do.

And it’s made me realize there is absolutely no way to please everyone. None. Be who you are and don’t be ashamed of it.

Fall Chalkboard and Shelf Vignette | Bless'er House - Cute way to create changeable art out of an old window, a wood plank, and rope!

And as for addressing the “troll” situation, I think we should start a revolution. And maybe not in the kick-butt-and-take-names kind of way you might be thinking.

Fall Chalkboard and Shelf Vignette | Bless'er House - Cute way to create changeable art out of an old window, a wood plank, and rope!

We should make it an #Anti-troll revolution. I might be the only one in this revolution, but I’m doing it!

Fall Chalkboard and Shelf Vignette | Bless'er House - Cute way to create changeable art out of an old window, a wood plank, and rope!

And that #Anti-troll revolution would be this. Pray for the person dishing out the expletives, the name calling, the bashing. Chances are they’re having a bad day. Or a bad year. Or a bad lifetime!

Fall Chalkboard and Shelf Vignette | Bless'er House - Cute way to create changeable art out of an old window, a wood plank, and rope!

I pray for people. Total strangers- the mom about to lose her cool at her screaming toddlers in the grocery store while shoppers stare. The old man driving too slowly on the road with a line of cars honking behind him. The person dishing out choice names to someone who doesn’t agree with their political stance.

And it will be the absolute shortest prayer that lasts all of 30 seconds, but I do it. Because if there’s one thing it seems like this world needs is praying for your “enemy”, not so much reacting to them and stooping to the same low.

Fall Chalkboard and Shelf Vignette | Bless'er House - Cute way to create changeable art out of an old window, a wood plank, and rope!

I realize this whole internet talk has absolutely nothing to do with this little fall chalkboard and shelf vignette that I’ve put together, but fall is all about change. Change the way we treat others; change the way we perceive the world around us; change how we see beauty that is sometimes buried deep within us on our not-so-great days.

Fall Chalkboard and Shelf Vignette | Bless'er House - Cute way to create changeable art out of an old window, a wood plank, and rope!

Because we might be a little like those fall leaves sometimes. The world around us might seem to be dying and drying up in a cold season, but if you look. I mean really look, it’s those trying times, when the sun doesn’t shine brightest, when the flowers no longer bloom that you can come to life all over again.

Fall Chalkboard and Shelf Vignette | Bless'er House - Cute way to create changeable art out of an old window, a wood plank, and rope!

God didn’t promise us a happy life. God promises a light for every shadow. A key for every problem. A plan for every tomorrow, even if it’s not the plan we had ourselves.

Fall Chalkboard and Shelf Vignette | Bless'er House - Cute way to create changeable art out of an old window, a wood plank, and rope!

So hug the haters, even if you can only send them a hug mentally. Rise above and shine a light.

Fall Chalkboard and Shelf Vignette | Bless'er House - Cute way to create changeable art out of an old window, a wood plank, and rope!

Be that person that can make their day better even when it seems they don’t deserve it. Those are the people who need it most.

Fall Chalkboard and Shelf Vignette | Bless'er House - Cute way to create changeable art out of an old window, a wood plank, and rope!

 And when you’re at a low point, when sometimes you’re not at your best, maybe someone will come along to do the same for you. Because every fall and winter eventually is followed by a spring. And there will always be a new, brighter tomorrow.

“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore, I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” – 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

(You can see all of the steps for making this chalkboard window, rope shelf, and easy chalkboard hand lettering from previous posts.)

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68 Comments

  1. Now I did not read your post first. I read the poem and let my thoughts go back in time when I’d teach my students little poems of old and then we’d talk about the science behind “fall” and go on a hunt and do an art lesson and I got lost. In those days. And I became injured there for life so I can only go back in my mind now as I sit alone. But I did not read with sorrow your poem. You brought delight. Oh and just one year did I have to use chalk and we went to white boards!!! I was so happy and NOW I love chalkboards ?. So then I read your post and agreed. Biblical lesson we learn in Sunday School but it is hard for you to put yourself out there. For me, you are MY delight from the Lord. You’re young. Around the age of my daughter. So I get to think younger?. I’m housebound and this is a no pressure hobby. On days I don’t feel well I am sorry but I must delete every devotional and the few blogs I receive. But I look forward to them. I am so colorful in my decor you’d have to use black and white blinders but that is where I see ideas that work in your blog irregardless of color scheme. Like this post today!!! I love it!! I giggled at the old man driving slow. They have the lowest rate of accidents!!! But back to you. I agree. It is hard for God has put me in many places where I pray for them or we can pray for relief from harassment too. Protection. So that is what I’ve prayed for you today. Protection. Deliverance from evil. A voice to boldly speak The Truth. And that we all can be more like Jesus our Savior. He is Lord of Lord. The only begotten Son of God who came to save us and glory to His name. That never is dependent on external input. Praise the Lord Most High that He loves us so. ?

    1. Dearest Gwen, This is Lauren’s mom. I am always thankful to God that Lauren has readers who enjoy her little blog and appreciate the many talents God has given her and shown her how to use for His glory (and her delight). But, I have never considered that some of you would ever pray for my daughter. Your comment really touched my heart. I appreciate your prayers for her more than I can express. I, in turn, will pray for you and all of the readers of “Blesser House” every morning as I pray for my children , friends and family. Thank you so much for showing us you heart. In His Love, Elaine

    2. Gwen, you have no idea how much your comment just touched my heart. Thank you so, so much. I have no words. I’ll be praying for healing and strength for you. 🙂

  2. Great post, Lauren! What a blessing that we can pray for others, especially those that need it so desperately. If you haven’t seen the movie “War Room” yet, it’s a must!!! A great movie on the power of prayer! Thanks for sharing – you are a blessing!
    Have a good week, friend!
    Lanita

    1. Oh thanks for the movie rec! I’ll have to check that out. Thank you for always making my day, Lanita! You are always a blessing to me, sweet friend. 🙂

  3. Hi Lauren
    I am actually an Afrikaans speaking lady (sometimes not so lady-like!) from Cape Town, South Africa. English is my second language, so forgive any errors.
    People should really learn to shut up if they do not have anything good to say to or about somebody. Maybe they feel better about themselves when humiliating others.

    Your blog is in my Top 5!!! I enjoy reading everything and used your gallery walls as an inspiration for the one in my kitchen.

    You GO girl!

    Regards
    Hannalie

    1. Aw thank you, Hannalie! For whatever negative comment I ever received, your sweet one just made them all go away. And I think your English is great! You’re much better at it than I would be in any other language. Haha! So glad to hear my gallery wall post could help you! Hope you have an awesome day. 🙂

  4. The other night I saw the one hour special I think ABC did with the Pope. Now, I’m not Catholic but I found it incredibly interesting for many reasons. One of the things the Pope said that really resonated with me was that the great uniting purpose in our lives is relationships. A relationship with Him and relationships with each other. My perception is that the “trolls” have entered a relationship with you simply by relating something to you. Chances are, they don’t have relationships that fulfill them and they don’t have a relationship with Him so they seek any relationship they can. A great book to read about this is…”The Blessing” by Smalley and Trent. If we don’t receive all of these “blessings” growing up we will search for them the rest of our lives. Thanks for the great post.

    1. That’s an interesting perspective, Nancy. I can see how that sort of behavior could be an attempt to fill a void. I think it does speak volumes of the person commenting rather than the receiver of the comment. Just keep being awesome, Nancy. 🙂

  5. Thanks for sharing! It can be so hard to read those negative comments and not let them get to me. I had a lady of FB tell me how hideous my toilet paper basket was in my bathroom makeover post, and it hurt my feelings. Later, I realized she was commenting on my post at 9:00 on a Friday night, and then I felt sorry for her. I was busy tucking my babies into their cozy beds for the night and she was on social media trashing a total stranger. Prayer is the answer! In this fallen world, it’s all we can do sometimes.

    1. I’m so sorry you had to deal with that, Carrie! It is definitely hard. But it helps so much encountering all of the many other bloggers who deal with the same things. At least when I was teaching, I could give a student detention for being disrespectful. Blogging, not so much. Haha! Hang in there, girl! The positive definitely does outweigh the negative by a landslide.

  6. I rarely take the time to comment on blogs, but I had to on this. Thank you so much for sharing – I have been trying to simply ignore most of these things in an effort to keep my blood pressure down, but your approach is much better all the way around. Now, back to my own screaming toddlers…….

    1. Aw thank you for the comment, Amanda! It really does mean so much to me. Now for overcoming those negative responses in toddlers, let me know when you have a solution for that one. Haha! 😉

  7. I think this might be my first comment here, Lauren, but I want to commend you on your positive attitude! As one who has been attacked by trolls, I’ve learned to read the comments and in my favorite Southern tradition said, “Bless his/her heart” and moved on. 😉 I think I’ll work on being a bit more charitable in the future.

    P.S. I have learned that the “Keep Scrolling” technique on Facebook keeps my blood pressure down! xo

  8. I know it’s hard to dismiss hurtful remarks but this is an OPINION someone has expressed. As a teacher I’m sure you realize an opinion is JUDGMENT formed about something NOT necessarily based on FACT or KNOWLEDGE. So why put any weight in something expressed by a stranger? Continue doing what you love with the same joy you have from the beginning. Let those who enjoy your blog continue to do so…and let those who choose to disparage you do so without effect!!

    1. I totally agree that people have a right to state their opinion, but is it really necessary if it’s negative? Maybe I’m just wired differently from the people who leave those sorts of comments, but if I see something I don’t like, and it’s something as trivial as home decor, why state the negative? I just move on because I just believe if you have nothing nice to say don’t say anything at all. Maybe that’s me. I know plenty of bloggers who try to move past the negative comments, even if they’re not meant to be hurtful, but it does still sting.

  9. Beautifully written. It is really hard for me to delight in weaknesses, insults, and in difficulties but I know we all have to do it. There have been many times when I’ve read a blog post or seen an image and didn’t like what I saw…didn’t understand the purpose. But I move on. It baffles me why some people aren’t able to do that, and would rather hurt us with their opinions. The only negativity that I ever get is from Hometalk and their facebook page. I love sharing on there and see so much traffic and positive feedback, but it is only the mean comments that i seem to remember. Like recently when someone had the nerve to say my project was stupid. Umm…didn’t we learn in kindergarten that stupid isn’t a nice word? 🙂 Thanks for the perspective of praying for our enemies!

    1. Yes! I’m right there with you. I don’t understand why someone feels compelled to comment on something they don’t like. I’d just move on. Totally agree though. Everything we need to know in life, we learned in kindergarten. Internet commenting included. 😉

  10. Wow, what a beautiful window and what a great post. You are so incredibly talented. I always find inspiration here. I totally agree about the anti troll movement. I do not know why people find it easy to be a bully when they can hide behind their computer/phone screen. Because the truth is, most of these people would never say something like that to a persons face. And then of course there are the ones that would. :p

    I’ve dealt with my fare share of hate in my heart this year. And you’re right, praying for the ones who hurt you is hard. But I honestly think it’s the only way to remove that hate. And it’s not always a quick process either. I’m a newer blog, a lot smaller than this one. I’ve only had maybe one or two semi mean comments. And they crush me every time. Trying to gather some thicker skin, but I like the idea of praying for them in the meantime. Great post and I’m so glad I found your blog! Xoxo

    1. Thanks, Brittaney! Ya know…I don’t think you ever really develop a thicker skin. I know I haven’t. But this way was the only way I knew how to get over some of the hurtful things. Even if they don’t mean to be hurtful and are just being brutally honest with their opinion, it still hurts. Good luck with your blog! It’s always an adventure. 🙂

  11. Lauren, just finished reading this article in my feed, and just had to stop by to say thank you for being so generous of heart. In a world where there is so much strife, it is nice to read something uplifting. I completely relate to the troll issue. Although I haven’t received many as of yet, it sometimes amazes me that people can be so mean. I always feel the urge to hug someone when I see them being bullied, but I guess I will try to remember your comments and say a little prayer for the bullies well. Thanks for the article!

    1. Thank you so much, Rachel. That means so much to me. It really is so easy to let the negatives discourage you. Just keep being awesome and stay true to yourself. 🙂

  12. Yes, couldn’t agree more! Thank you for the encouragement and inspiration! Those 30 second prayers have the power to turn someone’s day around! ❤️

  13. Well said. Or, well typed. Facebook is a blessing and a curse, just about every day. I choose the blessing part, because five min after the Haters have done their best, they are on to their next victim. The good lasts much longer!

  14. I agree 100% with you! I feel that it has somehow become acceptable for people to put people and things down that they either don’t agree with or don’t care for. I never thought of praying for them. I always tend to just walk away or keep my opinions to myself. I think I am going to try your solution out. And also…the shelf is super cute!

    1. I know exactly what you mean. I know I have a hard time walking away. Sometimes the only way I can make peace with something is if I pray about it. It gives me the strength to take the high road. Thanks, Melissa!

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