24 December 2008
i just did my Bible study, and every Christmas Eve, i always read the part of Matthew 1 with the story of how Jesus came to come on this earth. it always surprises me what Christians assume about the Bible.
you know, when you think about it, really, why WOULDN'T joseph plan to divorce mary secretly? i mean, what in the world are the odds that a teenage girl engaged to be married to a man would be carrying the King of the Universe? i mean, think about it. billions of girls have been engaged to be married to billions of men. what are the odds that mary is the one to carry Jesus? i mean, i can imagine that every girl that ever lived always hoped that she would carry the King of the world, but who would have dared to expect that it would be her?
and why do we wonder why joseph was about to send mary away secretly? stories like these have become more like a mathematical equation we have come to expect rather than a story we have heard for the first time. how sad.
this week, i've been struggling with a relapse of my depression. i dealt with it a lot while i was at union, so i'm really afraid that things will just return to how they were when i go back january 4. i have to go, though. i have the ticket, i'm registered to attend... i just have to figure out classes and finances. and i remember reading one december post of matt hammitt's--it was so cool. i'm sure the words aren't exact, but i would love to memorize them soon. he says something to the effect of "Lord, the gift of Jesus will always be enough, but if i can ask for something more this Christmas..." matt goes on to ask for the gift of wonder, like he sees in his young daughter, emmy. not me, this year, though. this year, my prayer is "Lord, the gift of Jesus will always be enough, but if i can ask for something more this Christmas... Lord, give me the gift of joy." i've been praying this a lot this season, not because i lack it all the time, but because i have lacked it in my life, and i don't ever want to lose sight of it again. Jesus brings so much joy to my life, and i want to live that joy out throughout my whole life. i want Jesus' Christmas joy.
it's so amazing to me to imagine that the improbable happened to a girl who hoped but never thought her hope would come to fruition... hope came to a girl who always dreamed, but thought she was destined to be a dreamer. nothing else. when hope came to a world who only hoped and never believed, when hope saved the world... it wasn't this night. it wasn't the 24th of december, but this is the day we celebrate it. at least some of us do. and i just want to have the joy and hope this night that i know mary and joseph and the world received over two thousand years ago.
merry Christmas, everybody.
19 December 2008
this Christmas has been interesting this year... my grandmother is in the hospital with cancer and pneumonia, my parents are really stressed, and i have been so busy with finishing up my semester in public school and working at taco bell and getting ready to return to my Christian college that this Christmas season has been different. and not in a good way.
i was told i couldn't say merry Christmas at work. every time i said it to a Christian, they just about blew my head off. then i had to explain to them that i went to work with this one girl, this other guy was my teacher in high school, and so on. SOOOOOOOOOOOO annoying. now i just say have a good day, because it makes me seethe inside to have to say happy holidays instead of merry Christmas. *sigh*. i still sometimes forget and say it anyway. i saw a lady with a pin that said "it's okay to say Merry Christmas," and i smiled. i wish i had a chance to tell her Merry Christmas.
this Christmas, i am learning more the "reason for the season". i always knew it was supposed to be Jesus, but it never really hit me here, deep in my heart. i've been learning about that. every year it becomes more important, and, this year, i think i would be okay if i didn't get any presents. sure, i really want that new purple iPod and a bunch of new books and that different version of the Bible that i don't have, and one of the sanctus real songs that i still don't have in my possession, but if i didn't get any of that... if i didn't get anything material, if my family didn't celebrate Christmas... i don't think i would pass out. i've been thinking about Jesus a lot. about how beautiful was His love when He came to sacrifice Himself for me, and what it must have been like to be Mary or Joseph. i like that. that i am seeing this season the way Jesus wants me to see it, whether or not this was when Jesus came to this earth.
the past two days i worked, there was this family that came in to taco bell. every time i see them come in, i'm excited to take their order, because they're deaf. the father has a cochlear implant, so he can talk a little, but the wife and children don't talk at all. it's so interesting to watch them use asl as they eat. they can talk with their mouths full! (haha, lame joke, but it was an interesting observation when i made it!) but it's always been a dream of mine to meet and talk to someone who is deaf... (i really want the conversation to be in asl, but for now, i will have to deal with this.) so what does this have to do with Christmas? i am not sure, actually. i guess it just teaches me to have more of a servant's heart. i realize i treat them with more love than a lot of people i serve.
tonight i made some pretty cool ornaments while i watched "the inn of the sixth happiness" (about gladys aylward) for family worship. i'm pretty stoked about that. i'm gonna collect them so i can use them on my Christmas tree when i don't live with my parents anymore. :)
that's about all i have to say right now. Merry Christmas!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (cuz i can say it here!)
till the next time,
08 December 2008
i know i've talked about mocha club a couple times on this blog, but this time i want to talk about them a little bit longer. they started this, well, i guess it's a campaign, using the slogan "i need africa more than africa needs me," and, as soon as i heard it, i was so psyched to get involved with it. it's taken me a while to get to the place where i can blog about it, but i'm finally here.
i need africa more than africa needs me. i really do mean that, with all of my heart. there is a breathless desire, a RAW NEED to change the world. if i lived my whole life and just went to school and went to work and got married and had a family and walked around this world, day in and day out, never doing anything to make life here more bearable and hopeful on this earth, then i think i would die. i had all these dreams about changing the world for years now, and i haven't had a clue how to change the world, to build hope, to cause more laughter and more smiles. but then, when i went to the sanctus real concert a couple months ago in september, sammy a. was telling us all about how we could LITERALLY CHANGE THE WORLD!!!!!!!!! not figuratively or in a small way, but to save people's lives. that was amazing to me. so i got behind mocha club. but that is not the only reason i need africa.
when i see africa in the news or in movies or tv shows like 24 redemption and some of the episodes of ER, it reminds me of people. people who have hurt and cried and died and that need my help. God has granted me gifts for a reason, and seeing these people reminds me to love. wherever i am. because all people want to be loved.
you can get involved, too... it's only seven dollars a month, and how much is that? not very much at all! you aren't giving up very much... just two mochas a month, or going to the movies a time or two a month, or maybe a book, or eating out instead of packing a lunch... that's all it takes. and you're saving lives. if you join mocha club, you'll get a pretty cool tee-shirt for free, too. think about it. pray about it. and do it. please.
When I think of Africa, the following images immediately come to mind: Starvation. AIDS. Child soldiers. Genocide. Sex slaves. Orphans. From there, my thoughts naturally turn to how I can help, how I can make a difference. “I am needed here,” I think. “They have so little, and I have so much.” It’s true, there are great tragedies playing out in Africa everyday. There is often a level of suffering here that is unimaginable until you have seen it, and even then it is difficult to believe. But what is even harder is reconciling the challenges that many Africans face with the joy I see in the people. It’s a joy that comes from somewhere I cannot fathom, not within the framework that has been my life to this day. [read more]
30 November 2008
i just ran across these words in Psalm 9, and i just had to write them down. people's opinions and popularity aside. Here are these words:
"For the needy will not always be forgotten; the Lord has made Himself known." that's basically the first line of verses 18 and 16 (in that order). mmmm... how powerful is that?
"For the needy will not always be forgotten." How much is that needed in today's society?
i remember this one quote from this Christian comedian/singer, who was talking about his favorite Bible verse (which says, "It has come to pass.") He talks about how cancer and aging and the horror on this earth have come to pass. "It has not come to STAY, it has come to PASS!" i remember he said. "you eighteen-year-old jocks with muscles in your earlobes! enjoy it! it has come to pass!"
mmmm... but in all seriousness, what are you supposed to say to a seven-year-old little girl who has been molested by her uncle? or the girl who thought she was in love, only to find that he had married her for her money, and took half of it--and all her heart--with him when he filed for divorce two days after the honeymoon ended? or the teenager dying of cancer? or the single mother raising three children on a waitressing job?
my pastor preached about this today, and how we're supposed to have grattitude, and how it didn't make sense to be grateful when so much is wrong in the world. and then he suggested that these trials come so we can praise God. and i believe with all of my heart that trials bring us closer to God if we let it, but i really don't believe that God is just looking for trials to put us through, just so he can see if we're good little lab rats and we've been conditioned properly!!!! and that's what it sounded like my pastor was saying today. and all i could think of was NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!!!!!!!!!!!!! stop it! stop saying that! stop breaking their hearts! these single mothers, and grandmothers dying of cancer, and divorcees, and parents stretched so thin financially that they don't know where their meals are coming from for tomorrow... they don't need to hear that this has come to see if they are faithful! they don't need to hear that the God they claim to follow isn't right by their side, coaching them through this!
i believe that God tests us, lets us go through the fire draw us closer to Him, but the part my pastor failed to mention that God goes right through the fire with us, that Jesus has PRAYED for us, and that He holds onto us and holds us up as much as we let Him!
"For the needy will not always be forgotten..."
i love this chorus in this song by one of my favorite bands, tenth avenue north, which goes like this:
And I'll be by your side
Wherever you fall
In the dead of night
Whenever you call
And please don't fight
These hands that are holding you
My hands are holding you
"The Lord has made Himself known."
26 November 2008
anyways, so yesterday, i was at work, slaving away so i can go back to my dream college next semester, and it was about 2:15 in the afternoon or so, and i was looking for something to do (cuz it's usually DEAD in taco bell at 2:15 in the afternoon). so my boss calls out to me (you have to understand, this in itself is pretty hilarious. she's this Filipino pip-squeak who bosses everybody around and threatens to "karate-chop" you up in pieces if you do something too wrong. she's pretty hilarious), and she wants me to turn this timer that hangs from the ceiling so she can see it in the camera, so i try, but i'm, like, three feet below it, and i can barely touch it with the tips of my fingers... horrible. anyway, so i'm swatting at it, and its spinning around in circles (any person in their right mind would have noticed something was wrong here), and i kept spinning it the wrong way, apparently. and my boss keeps saying "no-no... other way. other way. i'm gonna karate-chop you..." and i've been swatting it both directions so, i'm like, "what is she talking about?!?!" and then, it came to a stop, so i was waiting for her to tell me which way to turn it, and my head was kinda down, and then, out of NOWHERE, it was like BAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! the clock fell! from the ceiling! on top of my head! and then to the ground!
i didn't even know what had happened... it felt like an eternity after it happened that it dawned on me that the clock had hit me on the head, and all i could do was hold my throbbing head and will myself to breathe so i didn't pass out in front of all my coworkers and all the taco bell customers (cuz i have a REALLY low tolerance for pain...). after that... well, after that, it was a blur. i sat down in the dining room for a little bit, and then i took of my hat, and found blood soaking into my hat, and i was like, "ho, boy..." after that.... well, i just sat a lot and put ice on it, and my boss cleaned it up, and ho, boy, did it hurt! it still hurts so bad. yesterday, my dad made some joke about how i literally got "clocked", and they haven't stopped yet... at least i got out of work early. :)
i just praise Jesus that i didn't get hurt worse than i did, and that i didn't get any serious brain injuries. Jesus is so good. :)
25 November 2008
lately, i have felt this deep calling, and even if you don't care, or you don't know what i am talking about, or you think this is stupid, i know this is a calling of God, it is my dream, and someday, it WILL come true. and i just have to say it somewhere, somehow, how incredibly BUILT FOR ME this mission is.
last fall (september to be exact), i went to my first Christian rock concert. it was amazing!!!!! :))))) anyway, it was to see my favorite band, which you probably know by now if you read any of my other blogs. :) anyway, so i went and i enjoyed myself so much. but, the thing is, while i was there, there was this really cool speaker. his name was sammy adiyibei (not sure of the spelling). so he spoke just before sanctus real came out, and i've been thinking a lot about that lately. about what it would be like, traveling with a Christian band, listening to them sing and talk about Jesus every night, and watching these kids be impacted by Christian ministry, and then, having the honor of being a part of that, to impact kids lives and to have the incredible honor to speak to a generation every night, and pour out Jesus' love for them... it's just something i feel like God has called me to do, and i can't wait to be a part of that. i just don't know how to get there. maybe soon. God, show me how!!!
the thing is... the first year i went to college, i went in as a theology student, because, for one, i LOVE youth, and i love ministry. even though i don't have much experience speaking publicly, i love the experiences i've had, and i LOVE connecting with people one-on-one. secondly, i LOVE Christian music. LOVE IT! like, you don't even know. my family thinks i'm crazy, cuz i can't stop playing it. and for like, the past half a year, i've been dying to meet sanctus real (even though that probably has nothing to do with it).
i don't know how to explain it... it's like... you know who you are sometimes, and you know God has this incredible plan for you, and then He shows it to you, if only just a little bit, and you're like, WELL, DUH!!!! WHY DIDN'T I THINK OF THAT? and that's kinda how i feel... except for one addition... "when can i start?"
*sigh* i hate it that it takes me so long to be prepared by God to do the things He has called me to do. well... until later... keep chasing Jesus. :)
31 October 2008
this picture kinda explains how i feel tonight. how i wish i had a haven like this where i could go and sit in the middle of all the glory of God and take a breath of fresh air. sometimes, in the middle of a million people, though, i get these glimpses of fresh air, even when i am breathing the dank, stale air of a city like reading, pennsylvania, cuz Jesus is my Breath of fresh air. i know that sounds corny in a million and one ways, but look at that picture. look at it. with those billowing, cotton-ball clouds swooping so low in their dance that you could almost reach up and touch them, with the trickling, tickling sound of the water underneath your feet, the feel of the worn wood under your palms as you stair up at the sky at God in wonder, how can Jesus not be your Breath of fresh air? this world is becoming increasingly like a stale city, full of foul, frenzied people, but Jesus... when i look at Jesus, i can breathe again.
at this moment, i feel like i've just breathed my first breath of air in a really long time. i just had to say how incredible it is to breathe again. :)
30 October 2008
58 days until Christmas day. :)))))))))))))))) woohoo. i'm psyched. soar throats are a pain in the butt. i hate it that cussing is so popular and that now that i visit secular environments so much that those words enter my mind way too much. i want to meet Sanctus Real for more than five seconds and more than as just a fan who wants an autograph. i wonder where my Sanctus Real tee-shirt went to. i wonder how i'm going to end up changing the world like i know Jesus has planned for me to do. i miss my uncle (he was visiting from
1. yours, by dizmas
2. the fight song, by sanctus real
3. something to say, by matthew west
4. dear love, by the icarus account
5. doubts or disbelief, by chasen
6. grace, by phil wickham
7. nothing to lose, by sanctus real
8. stronger, by seabird
9. hold my heart, by
10. opposite way, by leeland
yep. pretty awesome. Christian music at its best. :]]]]]]]] been thinking about ministry ideas. what i want to do to change the world. just don't know how to start it. i hate free taco afternoon at taco bell. i had about 7 people just about cuss me out when it came time to turn people away from their free tacos. silly people. they care about the stupidest things. please, nobody else steal any bases in the world series!!!! haha. i wanna paint again. oil painting is fun. i would love to miss a day of school. can't wait to get back to
so what's the point of all this rambling? i dunno. is there really ever a point to rambling? probably not. but all these things... music, school, Jesus... these are the things of my heart. i dunno what the future holds, but i finally know who holds me.
oh, i hate this... i've been trying to figure out how to say what i want to say for at least half an hour now, but i don't know how to say it. i just want to say that this world is crazy, and so messed up, but somehow, i've found peace, and the Way that i need to go, and it's just the most incredible thing. to find peace in depression... that is a miracle. a couple of entries ago i talked about sanctus real's song about how it's chaos, and there's peace, and how that was the perfect definition of depression--chaos--but i didn't know where the peace was, but, Jesus, in His mercy and strength and love, showed me the peace, too... it's like, an orchestra singing glory and majesty... and i can dance in circles with my Maker in the middle of it all... it's just so crazy... but it's my life. wow. :]
haha... just something to balance all the deep thoughts with. :) i love this video. :))))
15 October 2008
wow... i've seen this video before, since phil wickham is my second favorite singer (second to sanctus real... *grin*), but today... today this song resonated so much with me... life's pretty good, but it's been a little depressing lately, and lately (namely, today), i've been wondering what you're supposed to do when you don't feel God, and you feel like you don't know Him anymore, and you feel like you're like any other joe schmo or jane doe, killed by this world.
cuz that's how i've felt lately. alone and killed by this world, full of secularity and emptied of God and goodness, and i feel like i've completely lost sight of who i am. it's not the first time i've lost sight of God, and now i know that not matter how i feel i always have to cling to Him even if i don't understand, but what... what do you do when the world grabs you by the throat and its talons dig into your trachea and slit your throat and you feel the last few breaths seeping out of you, and you have no hope and no strength to fight anymore? what do you do when it takes every effort just to keep breathing, to just sit there and not let go, to grit and grind your teeth and dig in and breathe in and breathe out, when that's all you can do, when praying doesn't seem to work and you don't feel God, and you don't even know WHY??? and you're desperate and you heave in and out and in and out and nothing makes sense and you know there has to be a purpose beyond these heaved breaths, beyond this nothing, but you don't know how to get there and so you heave in and out and try to find something, ANYTHING, to do to make the silence and the pain less obvious and felt, but you know it has to be something worthy of God, since you're supposed to be God's temple and His hands and feet and His breath and His touch and salt and light, but you're so, so, so tired of fighting.
that's how i felt this afternoon between my useless classes, and i just was sick of fighting and sick of this war and sick of being sick... and then, after supper, i sit down in my parents dark room and go on the internet, mainly to do my math homework, and then i find this... this worship anthem written and sung by an un-Christian singer (well, he might have been a Christian, but he wasn't a Christian singer) and covered by dozens of musicians, and sung with such passion from phil wickham, like he knows exactly what i'm talking about in this blog, that someone knows...
maybe all i know tonight is that when i don't feel Jesus, and i don't know what is going on, and i want so much to be who i am to be, but i'm not that person yet, i just have to hold on to Jesus and sing hallelujah. i don't even have to fight. i don't even have to protest, or figure out a battle plan, or figure anything out. i just have to keep believing that even if i never see Jesus' heart again on this earth, if i keep believing that He's for me, and i was created to be with Him and for Him, and if i keep telling people about Him, even if i don't even know if i know Him anymore... i don't have to have it all. i just have to cling to Him. and sing hallelujah... sing hallelujah...
30 September 2008
so i after i posted the blog about how i was so excited about going to the concert, i woke up my dad (he was napping! i couldn't believe it...), and i borrowed $20 from my sister so i could buy a sanctus real shirt. :) she was so gracious. i love my little sisters. anyways... we went out to the car and my dad drove for FOREVER!!!!!!!!! it didn't seem like we would ever get there! and my dad went there a different way from the directions i got from mapquest, so i was kinda freaking out, but then it was okay, cuz we got there, and i remembered this church we had gone to for this other event, so i was okay.
we ate at burger king before going to the meet-and-greet, and it was pretty much not even worth it, cuz i was basically bouncing off the walls... i was SOOOOOOOOOOOO excited, but also really nervous about meeting the band. my dad just laughed at me.
anyway, then we finished and went to the church. it was huge!!!!! the parking lot was almost 10 times the size of our church's parking lot, and i always thought we had a pretty big parking lot. the church was huge, too. we went inside, and as soon as we did, this man was yelling out that if people had orange tickets to go on through, so i was like, "woohoo!" but i was also really nervous because i knew it was for the meet-and-greet. i didn't know what to expect, but i didn't want to sound like a raving idiot, i knew that for sure. it turned out that there were so many people at the meet and greet that they just had sanctus real answer a few questions and sign some autographs before going back to get ready for the show. i was going to ask them a question, but i was too nervous, and other people asked questions, so i don't feel too bad about that.
then it was time for the show, and the first band, vota, came out. they were okay; i don't really like most of their music, but i always liked two of their songs--they only played one that i like. then there was a little break, and tenth avenue north came out. they are pretty cool... i love their music, but it just seemed like they played their music and got off stage; i didn't really feel that much of a connection, but maybe that's because i wasn't up at the stage. but i got a few cool videos of them.
then sammy a., the speaker, came out. he was pretty powerful. he talked to you one-on-one almost, but it was powerful, like one of those powerhouse preachers. he talked about how all of us in the room were brought there for a specific purpose, and God knew what that was, and he talked about how we were all a part of the top 1% of the world, because we had change in our pockets, and we weren't starving, and a bunch of other things. and then he talked about how one person could change the world, especially through mocha club, and i was like, "oh, yeah!!!!!!!!" i was so psyched to change the world again... i wanted to help out so bad, to be a part of something greater, to help, to make a change... i was so pumped.
then sanctus real came out... oh, boy!!!!! this was pretty much the best part, although sammy a. was pretty incredible, too. i went up in front of the stage for that, and i took my camera (which finally decided to cooperate and let me take pictures and video... my batteries are so retarded...) with me.
sanctus real is so awesome live. they just connected with the people so much... i always thought their music was awesome, and that they were pretty cool guys, but seeing them live... it was almost as if they were personally glad each and every one of us were there to share them rocking out, and they wanted to show us that. i was standing on the right side of the stage, facing the stage, so i was pretty close to the guitarist, chris rohman. i always wanted to meet matt (the lead singer) and mark (the drummer), and i kinda wanted to meet chris, but after watching chris live--he connected with the people so well. he kept giving away his picks, and i think he winked at me once, which is kinda cool. :)
and there was this one girl, she was just leaning against the stage, her head in her hands, looking a little depressed, and chris noticed her, and for a moment, he rested his chin on his hand like she was doing and smiled. she stood up self-consciously and smiled slightly. then he threw her his pick... i dunno how to explain it... they just really love people, it seems like. and matt kept giving people hi-fives as he sang, and he would take cameras/video cameras from the fans and give them these great videos of mark playing the drums and dan and pete and chris, and himself, too. i kinda wish i was closer to him, so maybe he woulda taken a video for me. oh, well. maybe next time. cuz there will be a next time. :)
after the concert, i went straight to the wordfm's booth, cuz my favorite radio station was there, and they are collecting money for this charity, cents for hope, that's helping orphans (i think) in honduras. so i had a sandwich bag, full of pennies ($3.47 worth)... it was heavy, btw... and i dropped it off. then i went and bought a tee-shirt at the sanctus real booth. i had gone online earlier to see which shirts they had, and i found one that had that song that changed my life and helped to start pulling me out of depression--it's called "whatever you're doing (something heavenly)"--so i bought that one. i waited in a long line to get sanctus real to sign it, but they did, and they also took a picture with me... yay!!!!!!!!! i also got to tell matt that i was so grateful for "whatever you're doing", because of how it pulled him out of depression, and a smile lit up his face, and he was so genuine, and he was like, "wow... thank you for telling me that... that means a lot!" and i was just like, :]!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
so there's the concert... maybe i'll try to upload videos and pictures later. i should get ready for work. :)
6 "Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen:
to loose the chains of injustice
and untie the cords of the yoke,
to set the oppressed free
and break every yoke?
7 Is it not to share your food with the hungry
and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter—
when you see the naked, to clothe him,
and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?
8 Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness will go before you,
and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.
9 Then you will call, and the LORD will answer;
you will cry for help, and he will say: Here am I.
"If you do away with the yoke of oppression,
with the pointing finger and malicious talk,
10 and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry
and satisfy the needs of the oppressed,
then your light will rise in the darkness,
and your night will become like the noonday.
11 The LORD will guide you always;
he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land
and will strengthen your frame.
You will be like a well-watered garden,
like a spring whose waters never fail.
Isaiah 58:6-11, NIV
i've just been really thinking about these verses--and their meaning--a lot lately. with signing up to be a part of mocha club, and just hearing about what has gone on over there, and then there are these ER episodes where carter and luka go over to africa to volunteer... some of that footage is just gut-wrenching, heart-searing, life-changing drama, and it has had my stomach churning for almost two hours to do something for those people, to show them the love of Jesus, to show them the face of love... i wish i could do more than $7 a month to change the world... i still feel so helpless... but still, what can i do? how can i help so many people when i am only one, and so much is already expected of me, with school and work and chores? that's not what is important--impacting lives for eternity is!!!!! but i feel so tied down!!!!!!! AHHHHHHHHHHHHH!
24 September 2008
for one, i am completely stoked. i can't believe that this feeling is coming back... my number one dream has always been to change the world, relationships at a time, and for so many months, i haven't felt that passion. for two, i want to scream and pull my hair out (despite how painful i know that would be). at the sanctus real concert, this really cool preacher-dude (his name is sammy adebiyi) from africa (nigeria) who now lives in toledo, ohio, was talking about a tangible way that we can change the world. i would give almost anything to change the world, to be a part of something bigger with every move that i make.
i mean, between blogging for this blog, i did sign up for mocha club, which i am totally stoked about... and even though it seems like such a little thing, it is changing the world, if only by a little. (btw, if you wanna join my team, go to http://mochaclub.org/joinme/dreamer84 and sign up. it only costs 7 bucks per month, and it really makes a difference.)
well, i need to go to work tomorrow, so i should sign off for today... i just wish it was easier to make a difference... hmmm...
23 September 2008
okay... so dan gartley is 100% correct on this one... fall is officially here, the leaves are starting to turn, and i am PSYCHED!!!!!!!!!! woohoo!!!!!!! okay, i know i'm not the only who is completely in love with fall, but it's is like, the coolest part of the whole year--well, fall and all the way till spring semester starts. i mean... think about it... leaves turning colors, wearing hoodies and jeans, getting ready for Christmas, hot cocoa and hot apple cider, the newness of a new school year, THE COOLEST CONCERT OF ALL TIME (yeah, that's right... i'm talking about the Sanctus Real concert... more details to come in a later blog... :]...), buying Christmas presents, being with family... WOW, i'm excited!!!!!!!
hope y'all enjoy this fall as much as i'm planning on it... :)
21 September 2008
sorry i haven't posted anything in a REALLY long time. yeah... i didn't even tell you about public school... wow... the thing is, i don't really write if i don't feel like it would be God speaking through me, so that's pretty much why i haven't said anything. that, and i hate public school too much. :)
but that's not why i'm blogging today... today... oh, yeah, i'm like SOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO EXCITED (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) about today, cuz i'm going to this concert... never been to a Christian rock concert before, and this is my ABSOLUTE FAVORITE BAND IN THE WHOLE WORLD... i'm leaving in an hour or two, and we're driving about an hour to see Sanctus Real. i'm really excited, not just for the concert, cuz one of my other favorite bands, Tenth Avenue North, is gonna be there, and this pretty cool speaker, and this other band... AND!!!!!!!!!! and, i'm going to this meet-and-greet... i am so psyched. to hear Sanctus Real live, and to meet them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! EEP!!!!!!!!!!! :) i know... i'm terribly over dramatic.
i guess it's because i haven't been so excited about doing something for so long, and i've really wanted to meet this band for the longest time, and i've been waiting for this day for a REALLY long time. not only that... when i was depressed for the past year, something about Sanctus Real's music helped me remain committed to God in the midst of it all. i remember this one song... it totally destroyed my reserve and any fight i had left, and i was just completely empty, trying to figure out how what Matt Hammitt was singing could be true. i didn't get it.... the line went something like this: "Whatever You're doing inside of me / it feels like chaos but somehow there's peace / and its hard to surrender to what i can't see / but i'm giving in to something heavenly." i totally understood the feeling of chaos in my life--depression is UTTER CHAOS--but i really didn't feel ANY peace at all. i felt like calling this great spiritual counselor of mine a liar, cuz i really didn't understand it. but then as i sat there on my porch, just me and God and the voice of Matt Hammitt, i found healing. every time i didn't think i would make it.
and today i did. and i'm this close |------| to being healed from depression, and just to meet someone that instrumental in helping me pull out of depression, through the grace of God... i just really want to meet that person, and to thank them for what they did cuz of Jesus.
well, i should study a little more for my exam tomorrow before i leave. that, and get ready. :) i'll let you know how it went. i promise. and there'll probably be more on ucky public school, too. :)
26 August 2008
tomorrow, i start school again... i feel like i'm so behind everybody else! anywho, tomorrow i'll probably have some stories to tell, but, for today, i feel like doing something i saw a bunch of other people doing on the internet--posting a "top 10 favorites" list--on myspace, their blog, whatever. so i'm gonna do it, too.
10. what women want
9. working at taco bell
8. 2008 beijing olympics
7. two weeks notice
5. getting ready for school
4. writing novels--especially about beautiful characters
3. Sanctus Real
2. the mikucki brothers (i feel inclined to say
that these two boys aren't the mikucki brothers...
at least, not the ones i'm talking about. :) i just
don't have a picture of joe and geoffrey... :])
1. God's love and mercy.
that's all, folks. i wanna watch a movie before i go to bed. toodles... :P
16 August 2008
haha... this is what i do with my days off. :) i love these two videos.
anyways, if i had a good story, i'd tell it, but this has been one of the most boring-est vacations i have had in my whole entire lifetime. i didn't even watch a good movie. maybe i'll have an exciting story for you once i start my first non-Christian school. probably could stretch that one a while. :)
Happy Sabbath, everybody.
12 August 2008
I guess this isn't the coolest blog story ever, but today we received the news that my mom has been fired/laid off today, and this is really hard on our family.
Receiving news like that is like realizing you are clinically depressed--it's like you've been sucker-punched; all the air goes out of you and you double over. We're all just really worried about the future, and what's going to happen.
I believe in prayer and that God makes no mistakes, but that doesn't mean life is easy. Please pray for my family and my momma.
Talk to you guys soon,
05 August 2008
i haven't been up to much lately, just learning about my little brother's passion, photography. yup, yup. i never really was that much into taking pictures, but over the past three days, i've done it a LOT. just figured i'd post some of them for you to see. :) not much exciting going on with me, just getting ready to go back to college.
the thing i wish i knew most how to communicate but i still have no clue how to say that everything can happen in a moment where nothing is going on. i hate it when people ask me, "what did you do this summer?" after they talk about working at summer camp or going to concerts or europe and stuff like that. what do i say? "umm... i worked at taco bell. all summer. real boring." except it WASN'T BORING... being with family isn't boring. overcoming depression isn't boring. falling in love with Jesus isn't boring. dreaming of life isn't boring. figuring out my life calling isn't boring. but man, how do you say that when taco bell is so much less exciting than going to romania and rebuilding a house? or watching 20 kids get baptized after seeing your witness at summer camp?
nothing is everything. that's what i say tonight. cuz dreams start out of nothing, and sometimes nothing is good.
27 July 2008
that's what i wanna say tonight. i dunno anymore. i thought life was absolutes, which it is, in some ways, completely. but sometimes, life is nothing but grays and muddy puddles. what i do know is that Jesus is real, life goes on, and someday i will dance under the stars like a princess in all her glory--depression or no.
God is good. amen.
13 July 2008
i really hope that doesn't sound conceited or cliched. i hate sounding conceited and cliched. i'm a humble Christian writer, and humble Christian writers hate that.
it kind of just dawned on me, as i'm getting ready to go to bed, and i didn't want to forget it. i wish i was talented enough of a writer to be able to write a song about how blessed i am, and then share it with you, but right now, prose is my thing. and that's only sometimes.
sometimes, i get these epiphanies about life and my position in it--like humility is one of the coolest personality traits in the whole world, and changing the world is what we were created for, and life is completely colorless without loving and knowing and being with Jesus more than any other living thing that ever existed. this epiphany isn't quite so timeless... it applies to right now for me. i. am. blessed.
wow. lately (as in the past 18 months) i have been going through a horrible stretch of my life... i guess depression isn't something people usually brag about on a blog, but i admit it: i was depressed. not just the sort of "oh, i'm in the blues today" sort of depressed but the sort of "i've been clinically diagnosed as a person who suffers from clinical depression" sort of depression. it is the most evil, conceited, selfish disease ever created to invade a person's soul. i believe it is the cancer of the mind and the heart. i hope satan suffers a good long time for creating depression alone.
anyway. so since i have been depressed, i have stopped appreciating a lot of things--like my friends and family, and the simple pleasure of being happy, dancing in the rain, hugging my two little sisters every day, watching movies and praying for my best friends, planning to coup the powers that control the world and giving it back to Jesus (so He can turn the world upside down and start it turning the other direction), reading a book, writing a novel, jumping up and down to music like a crazy little kid... life is supposed to be lived out loud... and i've been failing miserably. not because i wanted to, but because depression robbed me of my life. but now, little by little, it's coming back, and, man, let me tell you, the feeling is PHENOMENAL!!! wow... what a rush... i have been given so much... i just want to live now...
man... but i have to sleep... i really wish sleep didn't exist. it puts a damper on all my excitement. :*(
i just wanted to remind myself... and anyone else who takes the time to read this... life is good. even when you're depressed. i know sometimes we don't even want to see it, but wow, God is SOOOOOOOOOOO GOOD!!!!!!!!!! Jesus takes favor in us, and that, in itself, should be enough.
and i pray that it is.
06 July 2008
I was going to try and find a picture for you to look at tonight, since this is such a visual blog, and, i guess this one is OKAY... not as amazing as the view i saw, but, oh, well.
anyway, tonight i want to tell you about something i witnessed a few nights ago... it was a little after midnight, and my whole family was asleep, so i went outside for a few minutes (i know, i'm crazy), and i was just staring up at the skies. the only reason i went outside was to look at the sky... for some reason, i feel a lot closer to God whenever i look up at the skies... especially at the big dipper. go figure. anyway, so i was staring up at the sky, remembering how i used to study the sky every night as i said my prayers and went to sleep, and it was so incredibly awesome... the stars were shining so brightly, and they were swaying back and forth, almost as if they were dancing. do great balls of fire dance? i guess they do now! :) but the stars were dancing, and underneath the stars, like a gentle cushion, were these big puffy clouds, like the trampoline the stars bounced off of, and it was like the night sky was electrified with the glory of God. i was like, "whoa... such goodness is too much for me, Lord..." i still get goosebumps thinking about it!
"The earth is the Lord's, and everything in it..."
what else is there to say?
02 July 2008
anyway, today, i was working, and it wasn't my best day... probably because two of my closest friends at work left for vacation for a week or two, and i'm really bummed that i won't see them for a while. anyways... this lady came into taco bell... well, it's a taco bell/long john silver's. anyway, so she was waiting for her order, and it was a take-out order, which takes longer to make, cuz you gotta be more careful. anyway, she wanted a quesadilla, which takes longer to make, and there were like, a bazillion customers. like, those little screens in the back that tell you which orders to make... there were like, three pages of orders... just for people who were dining in. excluding the drivethrough. ha. so, this lady was somewhere in the middle, and, psht, it was just a regular order i guess. i don't remember much about the order itself. and we were understaffed, so it was just me and one of my bosses. so she's waiting with her arms crossed, and i finally have her order in the take-out bag, and i call out her number, and she takes the bag from me. i'm about to ask her if she wants any sauces, but then, before i can say anything, she starts... well, it's not really screaming, but i call it screaming, because her heart's screaming, even if her mouth isn't. and she is like, "Hhhhh!!!! I knew I should have gone through drive-through! Eleven people..." Side note, it might have been THREE people... "have gone through drive through by the time I got my order, and all these other people got their orders before me, and they ordered AFTER me..." and she kept going on and on and on and on, and i was like, "i'm sorry... what else can i say to you? how can i make it up? i wish i could. you may not think so, but for some reason, i want to bless your heart, lady, but i don't even know your name or why you're yelling at me." so we just kept apologizing, and she just kept yelling. anyway. that's my exciting story so far.
then tonight, i was playing some stupid game on my family's computer, and listening to switchfoot and sanctus real, with the lights turned off and wishing i had something to do that i could do to change the world, but i didn't know what. i wanted to write for one of my stories, but i didn't have anywhere quiet to go. so i just sat and listened, and i remembered this lady.
i'm not quite sure why, but every time i go to a store, i want to be the pleasant, cheerful sunshine in that person's day at that store, or restaurant, or wherever. i guess i don't want to be like that lady--i want to be a shining light. like Jesus. i can't help but wonder, tonight, if that lady has Jesus, just like i wonder if 99% of my coworkers have Jesus, just like i wonder why so much of the world doesn't have Jesus.
i wish i could show them what they're missing. i've been thinking, lately, that a revolution begins with love--either love, or something fake that looks a lot like love would look. and i want to start a revolution with Jesus' love, but how do you make love shout? sometimes i feel like my love doesn't even whisper--it just meekly fingerspells my heart, hoping the world will see. does love shout more? or is it just me?
30 June 2008
i recently (last weekend) began to tithe again. if you don't know, that is when you take 10 percent of all your income, and you give it to Jesus through a church. it generally goes to support the church's pastor (which it does in my church), but it is something i really believe in. anyway, it's not that i stopped tithing... it's that i didn't know how to get my tithe from my newly opened checking account to the tithe at my new church at college... and, well, there was a lot of tithing to do. i'm pretty popular at my church... well, either that, or i don't know what, but i got a LOT of money for my high school graduation. :) then my parents gave me some spending money over the past school year, and i didn't pay tithe on ANY of it, so there goes my savings for college! and i wasn't even thinking about how this was going to deplete half of my college savings... i was just thinking about how i wanted to give back to Jesus again, and, well, He would have to take care of my school bill, because i was going to put Him first in this thing, no other way about it. i don't regret the decision at all, but now that i may have to spend HUNDREDS of dollars on my computer, which i NEED for college... it isn't as easy to sleep at night. :*(
there's this song that is pretty popular on Christian radio right now, by my favorite band of all time, Sanctus Real. it's called "whatever you're doing (something heavenly)". it's not my favorite song to dance and sing at the top of my lungs to, but when the hard times come, it's definitely something that reminds me of Jesus and gives me peace. anyway, this is the chorus:
Whatever You're doing inside of me
It feels like chaos but somehow there's peace
It's hard to surrender to what I can't see
but I'm giving in to something Heavenly...
i don't know completely what i'm trying to say tonight. maybe... maybe it's just that things don't have to be okay... they just have to be in God's hands. because... because Jesus gives peace, and that's all i need.
until next time,
23 June 2008
have you ever wanted to change the world? ... wow... SIGN ME UP!!!! for some reason, i have always wanted to turn the world upside down. even when i was this insecure little kid with no friends to my name, i still wanted to do something big.
i remember when i was little, i was in church, and i usually didn't listen to the pastor, cuz i thought he was boring (after all, i was about ten), but my mom said i had to start paying attention to the sermons, so i was listening this one day, and my pastor was preaching about this guy named enoch. the deal with enoch was that he lived for 65 years, and then his wife gave birth to his first son, and he walked with God for 300 years (cuz back then you didn't die as young as we do these days...), and then, one day, he just disappeared. and no, he didn't die on some obscure mountain. he disappeared, but he never died. he just went to heaven, and he was no more on earth, cuz he was just so close to God that God couldn't keep him on earth anymore. i always thought it was SO COOL that enoch never died. he's still alive today!!! how cool is that? that day, when i heard my pastor preaching about him, and how he got a whole verse or two, instead of just one line, i was like, i want to be different from everybody else. different like enoch.
then i see movies like camp rock, where kids younger than i am now are writing these really cool songs and getting recognized and have this power to speak up and make a difference, and i know the kids are fictional, but the opportunity to transform the world--that is NOT fake!
and... well, it makes me feel a little sheepish, but... how cool would it be to be a rockstar, not just to meet so many people and to feel so loved, but also to have that power--that precious power to reach out and touch people's lives and show them what living is all about?
wow... those kinda dreams make me kinda dizzy... even though i'm lying down... :]
19 June 2008
i'll try not to be boring, but i'm not superlady... yet... haha... so i can't make any promises. it'll probably be more deeply insightful into the human mind, with some really dramatic tellings of really boring stories... which make them exciting and funny...
thank you, my readers, for reading even when it wasn't necessary.
here's to Jesus and life.