Tuesday, October 31, 2006
Sunday, October 29, 2006
listening to "Gravity" on John Mayer's Continuum album. I can't pull my ears away from this album right now. I think I've listened to it at least 15 times in 3 days.
deciding whether or not to go to Fuel tonight. I think I'll go.
also deciding if I am going to eat more chili for supper. I made it today and will probably be eating it every day for the rest of the week, b/c there's so much of it!
avoiding laundry, putting away clean clothes in my room, cleaning off my kitchen table, dishes
enjoying my candles burning...currently 2 Pumpkin Pie candles. Makes me feel cozy even if I don't always completely feel at home in my own place.
not enjoying how it gets dark so early now b/c of the time change.
still confused about several things in life right now. i won't get into it here.
considering if i were to move someday...where would i move? what do i even want to do with my life?
wanting like a million CD's...still don't have the new Wertz Everything in Between, Adie's Don't Wait, Ray Lamontagne's Till the Sun Turns Black, Sarah McLachlan's Wintersong, some more of Jim Brickman's Christmas albums, Rob Blackledge's new one, Eliot Morris's What's Mine is Yours, Griffin House's Homecoming, MuteMath, Madeleine Peyroux, Chris Botti's December, and probably more i can't think of right now...
thinking i should drink some water and take something for this headache i have...
remembering that yesterday morning on I-55 I passed a black Prevost tour bus, wondered who it was, and then realized it had to be Dierks Bentley b/c he was playing w/ Miranda Lambert at the Coliseum in Bloomington last night. I was right. How do I know? I've seen his bus before in Champaign, and also I later drove by the Coliseum just to give my curiosity an answer, and sure enough it was there. weird.
torn...when i get home tonight shall i enjoy some Creamy Hazelnut Cocoa or some yummy Raspberry Lambic Framboise? i'm craving both.
thinking of a million more things to write about that: a) you don't care to read, b) are too personal to put on here, and c) are silly.
Enjoy this dark fall night. I want to bundle up and go play in the leaves...anyone wanna come play with me?
Monday, October 23, 2006
I came home today, distraught and somewhat depressed, and I started flipping through an issue of CCM Magazine that for some reason arrived in my mailbox. (I don't subscribe to it, and most likely won't be in the future, but I thought I'd at least read a few things since they sent me a free copy.) At the very end of the magazine, Nichole Nordeman has a small article called "Loose Ends...Confessions of an Unfinished Faith" that comforted me today. She wrote about some of her "colleagues," I guess you could say, in the Christian music industry and their songs about wanting to go to heaven. Her struggle is this: instead of wanting to be at home in heaven, she has been wanting to find home here...on earth. She articulates the truth that we all know--there are things we want to do here on earth before we go to heaven (i.e. get married, have kids, find a cure for cancer, find purpose, find a job we love, win an award, perfect some skill, or so on...) I won't lie. I'd sort of like to get married before Jesus comes back. I'm just being honest.
And so she was writing about wanting to want heaven. So do I. I'm glad I'm not alone in this.
And then I went to Bible Study tonight, where Beth Moore is taking us through the book of Daniel and we're beginning the second half that correlates with the book of Revelation. Again, just being honest, I've never given much thought to the prophecies in the book of Daniel or John's visions of beasts and strange images in Revelation. But tonight, I started to see it all tie together.
We studied Daniel 7 tonight, and what we seemed to linger on for awhile was the title God is given as "Ancient of Days." I've sung those words before, but I didn't really understand what it meant until now. It means He has been in the judgement seat from the very beginning, and He always will be. Nothing gets by Him. There may be wrong in the world that we don't see made right, but He will eventually make it right.
In Daniel 7 his throne is a chariot of fire, but in Revelation 22:1-2, there is different imagery. It says this:
"Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing 12 crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations."
We went from the fires of judgment to healing waters of life. This is what heaven is.
And it is hitting me hard today, as I came home from work and wallowed in what few, minute worries I have in my life. Too often I let my circumstances overrule my life, and then I realize that there are bigger problems in the world. Children are dying of AIDS in Africa, there are orphans without a home or people to love them in Romania and even here in the United States, there are people battling physical and emotional problems around the world, humans go without meals every day, and there are people who are lonely, truly depressed, and without hope.
There is hope. I have hope. My sins and my problems are before me, but they are not blocking the way to heaven. Nor can I let them steal my joy or my hope. There are bigger issues in the world, and there are people who don't have hope with whom I should be sharing it. I just thought of the words to an old camp song that I've just now found meaning to: "I've got a river of life flowing out of me, makes the lame to walk and the blind to see...opens prison doors, sets the captives free. I've got a river of life flowing out of me."
Why didn't I realize it till now?
Saturday, October 21, 2006
I hate waiting at red lights, and I'm one of those people who will go to whichever lane has the fewest cars in it. I check to see which cars look like they'll move the fastest (i.e. soccer mom van vs. a Mustang? Clearly, the Mustang will win.)
I get frustrated with every single driver in this town that does not use a blinker when turning or pulling into a parking spot. I missed the memo on not using your blinker whenever in the downtown square of Lincoln, IL. I guess I should join the rest of the community on this one.
I hate waiting for people to e-mail me back, call me back, or text me back. I prefer instant communication, even though there's a little bit of fun in the anticipation.
I don't like worrying, because it seems to go hand in hand with impatience. They both contribute to each other. When I'm worried, I become stressed. When I become stressed, I become impatient. When I am all of these things, as of late, in combination with being cold, I clench my jaw. I woke up in the middle of the night 2 nights ago with sore teeth and a painful jaw, which I am now calling "stress jaw" (thanks to Chels).
But all of these things lead me elsewhere. Impatience does not show love. Just the other day at our SFG (small group, for those of you who have no idea what I'm talking about), Lindsey and I were reading with our girls from a Max Lucado book and the chapter just happened to be about God's love in the form of patience. (Mind you, this is directly following my driving us to the coffeeshop behind a slow old lady driver...at which I complained the entire time.)
It turns out, it's not a coincidence that Paul lists patience as the first description of love in his long list of what love is and is not in I Cor. 13. Before love is kind, it is patient. Before it trusts, hopes, or perseveres, it is patient. Before it is not easily angered, it is patient. Before the fact that it never fails, love is patient.
It seems as though I fail at loving people when I become impatient. Well, it doesn't seem that way, it IS that way. I need more patience. I need to love more.
But before I can extend it, I need to acknowledge the source. God is love. God is patient. I'm thankful that He is. Otherwise, He'd have given up on me by now. I've thrown enough red lights in His path saying "wait, I'm not ready to give this up yet" or "I can do it on my own" or "I'll just go ahead and stick with my plans or do this my way." Instead of getting frustrated and honking His horn, He just sits and waits for me to give Him the green light. I have turned my own way without giving Him a blinker of warning, and He remains patient. I'm glad I'm not Him. But I'm glad He is who He is. He is love. He is patient.
I'm thankful that He is "slow to anger and quick to love." My human nature leans toward the opposite. His grace can only be administered because He is patient. And that just reminded me of Romans 5:8--"while we were still sinners, Christ died for us." He didn't wait for us to change. He just took action while we were still sinners. He didn't get mad. Instead he chose love. He still does today.
So why am I impatient? It's silly, really. Just because someone in front of me didn't use a blinker? Just because I haven't heard from someone in awhile? Just because I have to wait 30 seconds at a red light? Just because I'm already cold and I can't make it until warm weather comes back? I have a feeling the cold is going to get worse, and that all stoplights are not going to turn green when I approach, and that not everyone in Lincoln is going to start properly using their blinkers.
Why am I in such a hurry? After all, grace comes in the form of love, which comes disguised as patience. Waiting is not always fun. But it can change you. It's working on me.
Saturday, October 14, 2006
first and foremost, my dad has a new liver! praise God! he had a transplant on wednesday and all went well. i've been somewhat m.i.a. or practically living in chicago for 3 days, and will continue to be there quite often for that and other reasons.
i am extremely tired. and i'm not sure why i'm doing this right now instead of sleeping.
i'm pretty sure i'm leading a Week of E trip to Romania in the spring, and i'm pretty darn excited about that!
my sister's having another baby! (just in case you didn't already know that!) yay!
there are a few days in the near future that i'm quite excited about due to a certain someone who might be coming to visit...
it's cold outside, and it snowed yesterday. snowed.
also yesterday, Oprah and Bono were "painting the town red" for the new Red Campaign for the AIDS crisis in Africa. they were shopping on Michigan Avenue about a block from where I was, probably whilst I was also en route to Jamba Juice on Michigan Ave. myself. Can you believe it? And they didn't invite me?
dave barnes is coming to lincoln on 11/6. you should be there.
i'm eating frozen cherries and my eyes are closing, so i should go to bed.
thanks to anyone who's praying for my dad and keep it up!
Thursday, October 12, 2006
currently in Chicago it is 33 degrees (and according to the Weather Channel it feels like 23 degrees) and snowing.
this is ridiculous.
it's a darn good thing it's pretty.
Thursday, October 05, 2006
Jamie Cullum - Frontin (live at Blenheim Palace u.k.)
Tuesday, October 03, 2006
People, there are hours of fun to be had with The Office. First of all, the show is insanely funny. If you don't like it, then I don't like you. Ok, that may not be true, but you should seriously consider expanding your sense of humor. The website for the show has loads of funny videos that I'm sure I'll reward myself with by watching every now and then. The fake PSA videos ("...the More You Know") are great. (By the way, the world needs more of these...CIY did a great job with those this summer as well by making their own "More than You Know" version...check those out on iTunes through their podcast.) Anyway, I just thought I'd shed some light onto the website for The Office. It will provide hours of fun on end, if need be.
Have a lovely day.