Saturday, December 24, 2011

This day we call Christmas

Oh, to write an original Christmas post.


There is nothing new under the sun...but still, every Christmas has it's wonders.    
They may be old, but there is something comforting about things that are old.

That makes me think of something in a show I watched recently.
 "I like old things.   They make me feel sad,"   one character said.  
Her friend replied, "What's good about sad?"  
To which she said:  "It's happy for deep people."      

So if I talk a little mellow, a little deep, a little bit thoughtful, know that it's coming out of my heart, which, at the moment, is in a thoughtful, reminiscent mood.    It may be 'sad'...but it's truly deeply happy for me.

Christmas is nearly here.      I'm glad for the break from school, work, even the internet.      I think it's good to get away from all the things that clutter up our lives and relationships and simply spend time with people.    Sometimes I overanalyze and over plan my relationships.     But this Christmas is reminding me of the value of simply being together.

So with that, I'll sign off until New Years...


Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Passion = Sacrifice

       "So what is passion, really?  And how is it different from interest?
For the follower of Jesus, passion is a stirring in us that connects us more closely to the things that matter to God. That stirring moves us to a willingness to make sacrifices to accomplish something to further that passion.  When you're passionate about something, a "whatever" attitude just won't do.  You don't just sit back and stay detached. You do something.  You get involved.
Passion is being willing to give up something or ourselves-our time, our resources, our comfort, our interests- for something or someone...Of course not every passionate person is forced to become a martyr because of his or her passion, but every passionate person has to make sacrifices."
          -Zach Hunter, Lose Your Cool (emphasis mine)

For me to become the person I want to be...the person full of life and love,  the person that makes a difference in the lives of others... I'm going to have to give things up.  Things that make me comfortable.  Things that I put time and effort into but that aren't worth my love.   And it's going to mean taking on things outside of my comfort zone.  Doing hard things 

 "So then, brothers, we are debtors, not to the flesh, to live according to the flesh.  For if you live according to the flesh you will die; but if by the Spirit you put to death the deeds of the body you will live.  For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God."   -Romans 8:12-14
I choose to live for eternity.   

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

"I think you need a Doctor."

"It was a better life. And I don't mean all the travelling and seeing aliens and spaceships and things — that don't matter. The Doctor showed me a better way of living your life. That you don't give up. You don't just let things happen. You make a stand. You say no. You have the guts to do what's right when everyone else just runs away." 
-Rose Tyler, "Parting of the Ways"
I have recently become a Whovian.     I suppose it was partly due to the fact that everyone wouldn't stop talking about the Doctor.   Eventually, I became so intruiged that I watched the first episode.   And the next.  And the next.

And I realized why people love this show so much.

Doctor Who touches at something deep within me.   I don't watch Who for the effects (really, who could?), the sci-fi, the time travel, or even the humor.

I watch Who because something in The Doctor strikes a chord in me.

A desire for heroism.   A love for truth and justice.   A struggle against both evil in the world and evil inside your own soul.

The Doctor may be an alien.   He may be 900+ years old.  He may have two hearts and be a Time Lord who describes time as  'wibbly wobbly timey wimey stuff."

But he's also incredibly real, despite his quirks.     He loves.   He hurts.   He acts in meaningful ways.   He tries.  He fails.   He gets up and keeps fighting.    He strikes a beat in me, a deep desire for courage, a belief in beauty, a desire for right to triumph.   A spirit of mercy.

I think I've realized one reason people love The Doctor.  Of course, there are many reasons.    Maybe I'll explore them around here sometime.   But right now, this particular one is what's hitting me.
We are attracted to The Doctor because we're all looking for someone like him.    Someone to save the world, but more importantly, to save us.   Someone to sweep into our mundane lives.   Someone to jump into our suffering and defeat the fears and tragedies that haunt us.    Someone to give us a reason for living.

We're all looking for a Doctor.     He's a hero.   He's a savior.   He appears in times of need and fixes everything.   He loves his people and sacrifices all he is for them.    He fights even at enormous costs to himself.     He is someone that his companions can trust with their very lives.    
In our world that so often denies the very existence of right and wrong, a world that says there is no meaning in it any surprise that when we see someone like the Doctor something in their heart starts beating wildly?

I love The Doctor.     But I'm starting to realize more and more that the reason I love him is because so many of his traits point back to the Great Physician, the greatest, truest Doctor of all.       Jesus, the real Savior of the World, who conquered through love and sacrifice, who always fights for His people, who is merciful and just, who lives eternally.

Because, though The Doctor is just a story...

Jesus isn't.

Read this extremely delightful blog post, written by a fellow novelist, Nairam, for the reasons she loves The Doctor.    I completely and wholeheartedly agree with her.    And her entire blog is full of awesome posts, so I send you thither!

Sunday, November 20, 2011

Somewhere in Tomorrow

"It will come, sometime.    Some beautiful morning she will just wake up and find it is Tomorrow.  Not Today but Tomorrow.  And the things will happen...wonderful things.   She may find out what is at the end of the harbor road...that wandering, twisting road like a nice red snake that leads, so Elizabeth thinks, to the end of the world.    Perhaps the Island of Happiness is there."
-Lucy Maud Montgomery, Anne of Windy Poplars 
When Tomorrow comes.   Oh, how I long for Tomorrow.   I long with the deepest part of me for some bright future where everything nasty will vanish and blow away.   I'm always waiting for Tomorrow, whatever Tomorrow looks like from where I am now.      When I become a teenager.   When I get my driver's licence.   When I graduate.   When I publish a book.   When I get married.    Something in me wants something that is not today, with it's cares and hurts; not today's circumstances.   Not today's tears.   Not today's failures.   Somewhere, in my envisioning of Tomorrow, I've made myself believe that al will be put right.

But that's a myth outside of heaven.    It's a lie that fades away as Today melts into Tomorrow and I fid that where some problems and pains have passed on, new ones have replaced them.     I'm still the same me, no matter whether I'm in Tomorrow or Today.

And I'm still not satisfied, still looking beyond the sunset towards the next Tomorrow on the horizon.

Oh, that it would sink in that the Tomorrow I've always longed for is Heaven!    It's not something I'll grasp on earth.   But some days that just doesn't click.

So I drown myself in stories of valour and fantasies of a world where I am everything that I want to be.   And I shy further away from today.  

I want Tomorrow now.   I want everything to be fixed the way I want it ---now.    I want to be the person of my goals ---now.     But I'm not.

So I look to the sunset and it just seems so far away, and the durt under my feet is just a little too real.

So I need help to look at Today and see its purpose.    I need a Vision that includes homeschooling and dirty dishes and small group meetings and writing.  

Because Tomorrow will always be in the future.    On this earth, nothing is ideal.   But as I walk this life, as I live in the not yet, as I wait and long with groaning for my true home --- I want to live a extraordinary life.        Loving God, loving people, even when the difficulties of Today cast a dust cloud over my vision for Tomorrow.

Because Tomorrow, the true Tomorrow, is coming.
And I can't wait.
God, help me to live Today.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

glass houses

Glass Houses
A NaNoWriMo inspired poem

People living in glass houses
Throwing stones at each other in fear
Throwing sticks, throwing blocks
Throwing words like arrows

People living in glass houses
Stuck inside cause they’re scared to come out
Stuck alone, going solo
Stuck behind walls of sheet glass

People living in glass houses
Not moving cause they’re terrified of pain
Not laughing, not crying,
Not loving nor smiling or living

People living in glass houses
Maybe one day someone will break in
Maybe somebody will crash down those walls
Maybe shatter those houses of glass 

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Grace amazing, vast and free

We are not saved by what we do for God but by what God has done for us in the person of His Son.

“For by GRACE you have been saved through faith; and this is not of yourselves, it is the gift of God, not a result of works, that any man should boast.”

"We are not what we should be
We haven’t sought what we should seek
We’ve seen your glory Lord
And looked away

Our hearts are bent
Our eyes are dim
Our finest works are stained by sin
And emptiness has shadowed all our ways

Jesus Christ
Shine into our night
Drive our dark away
Until your glory fills our lives

Jesus Christ
Shine into our night
Bind us to your cross
Where we find life"

I can't seem to find out the title of this song, or who wrote it, but I suppose that it doesn't matter incredibly much. 

Saturday, October 1, 2011

"Time to buy and time to lose"

     So, a friend pointed out Five for Fighting to me.   Now, as a disclaimer, I've heard only about 3 of their songs, but what I heard I liked for several reasons, mainly the wistfull, dreamy quality of LONGING.  Here's something from 100 Years to Live:

"15 there's still time for you
Time to buy and time to lose
15, there's never a wish better than this
When you only got 100 years to live" 
~100 Years to Live~

Time to buy and time to lose.   That sounds SO true.   We as young people think a lot about the future, and what we're going to do with our lives.  We dream big, we hope.    Where are we placing our time?  I know where I want to spend mine.   Loving Jesus, loving people, and spreading HIS glory wherever I go.   In every week.  Every day.   Every hour.  Every minute.

"I wish the ring had never come to me.  I wish none of this had happened."   "So do all who live to see such times, but that is not for them to decide.   All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given us."
~Lord of the Rings~

"Making the best use of the time, because the days are evil."
~Ephesians 5:16~


NaNoWriMo and MASKED

I love NaNoWriMo.

So, this November, I’m going to, Lord willing, write another novel.    As I’ve written about recently, I’ve been thinking about masks.    This has translated into an idea for a novel that I’m hoping will really be able to express my own feelings AND make some discoveries about transparency and relationships.

So, here’s the basic idea!

(who are you under your skin?)

It’s a world of masks.  A world without relationships.  A world where the masks the people are forced to wear on the outside has thoroughly hardened them on the inside. 

Lili is 16, and she’s hurting alone.   When Jo, a fiery rebel steps into her life, he brings with him new ideas.  Ideas of change, of loving life, and of taking off the masks that hold them captive.   But when his great ideas get him banished, Lili is thrown into a situation she never dreamed of.  

She could simply go back to the way things were.  But if she chooses not to- what then?   If she breaks the law and takes off her mask, will it simply unleash more pain or will it give her the first glimpse of love?

I’m still working on the basic premise and storyline of this, but mainly this is a story of relationships, of transparency, and of how we learn to take off our masks and be real.

Because being real means being open to LOVE. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


So, I wrote about masks.  And now, learning to take off my mask.   Learning to trust others.  Learning to trust my Father in Heaven.  Learning to live, and to love.   It’s a journey.    Not something that will be accomplished in a night, but something that God is doing in me and will continue to do.

God, I have awesome friends.  You have given me awesome friends.   God centered, Jesus loving, encouraging, uplifting friends.  Friends who pray for me, who love me, and who understand me.  I am SO blessed today.   Last night I was able to chat with a couple friends I haven’t seen much over the summer.  I was so encouraged by their words, as they talked about what God has been teaching them and just spoke Truth to me.   They love Jesus and they shared that love with me.   Thank you JESUS!

And Thursday Night Awesomeness.   Wow.  What a GOD thing.  In all truth, this has been an incredible means of grace in my life.  Jesus is using it to strengthen me through the discussions and ESPECIALLY during the prayer times.   Jesus is filling these people and I get to be a beneficiary of what God is doing in them.    Thank you GOD!

And being able to worship at church and youth group is so strengthening.   God tells us to worship Him with singing.   When I’m in a corporate setting, praising my Father, the words of those songs speak to me with clarity and Truth and my faith is affirmed as God is glorified.    I am the beneficiary of grace unmeasured.   Thank you FATHER!

Sunday, September 25, 2011

On Masks, and the Taking off of Them

Masks is something Jesus has been teaching me about lately.    I’ve felt alone this summer, and disconnected, and just discouraged, and God has been showing me why.

I’ve become a good hider-of-the-truth.  I’ve become good at hiding who I am.   I’ve become good at wearing a mask.   Not consciously, but it’s happened.  I think it’s a fear thing.  I’m afraid of what people will think of me if I take off my mask and show them my imperfections.  If I truly honestly admit my brokenness, will anyone care?  What will they think if I break down and am honest?

I’m afraid of myself.  I’m afraid of honesty.  I’m afraid of transparency. 
But I also long for transparency. 
I long to let out my feelings to other people, to tell them my struggles and my pains. 
I long to take off my mask and let my real self, with all its beauty and tragedy, emerge.  I know that’s something God has done in my life.   I know that’s a void in my life that He wants to fill.  I know that His plan for me involves transparency.

I want to be honest.   God helping me, I will be honest.   I don’t know how to take off my mask.  But God does.   He is the healer of broken hearts and the mender of relationships.  He is the truth that cuts through lies.  He is the light that banishes the darkness.   He is the father who breaks down hearts.

I’m afraid of transparency.  I think that’s the reason I’ve kept my mask up so long.  Without my mask, I know I’ll be vulnerable.  I’ll have to answer tough questions, and confess deep secrets, and cry.

I don’t know that I want to cry. 

I don’t know that I want to hurt even if it’s in order to heal.

C.S. Lewis wrote  “to love at all is to be vulnerable.” 
It’s true. 
If I love others and am honest to them about myself; if I choose to build those bonds of love, there will be times when it will hurt.  Life hurts.  And when we share life with others we share those hurts.  If I take off my mask, I expose my hurts to others.  And I take on their hurts as part of myself.   If I love, truly love with all that is in me, it’s not going to be without pain.  

But I know that life is not just pain.   I know that beyond the pain there is joy.  I know that beyond the harsh fear of night, beyond the pain of confession, beyond the tears of agony there is hope.   From the ashes a spark remains.   And a spark is all it takes to light a fire.   I could choose to keep my mask on.  I could choose to never love, and so to never hurt.   I could choose to stay in a box.   I could choose to suffer alone.  But if I do, will I ever know joy?  I think not.

I will not live with a mask.
I will not hide who I am,
no matter what hurt it may bring.
May God lead me. 
May He take the mask from my face and fling it far away. 
I don’t want to run back and put it back on. 
I don’t want to shrink from the fight awaiting me. 
I don’t want to shrink from the confession and the pain and the tears. 
I’m will take off my mask.
After dark comes morning.
Tomorrow is a new day.

Friday, August 26, 2011

{Life continues}

Jesus, when I call out to You, You answer.  You never give up on me even when I live contrary to You.   Your still small voice calls me back to You.   I belong to You forever!  My heart has been changed, I am made new.  I will follow You.

The other day this song came into my head.  It's good to be reminded of my priorities and what I need to search and long for.
Jesus, my passion in life is to know You
May all other goals bow down toThis journey of loving You more
Jesus, You’ve showered Your goodness on me
Given Your gifts so freely
But there’s one thing I’m longing for
Hear my heart’s cry
And my prayer for this life

Above all else
Above all else
Above all else
Give me Yourself
-Vicky Beeching- Above All Else-

Saturday, May 7, 2011

The Deeper Well

"If a person is thirsty, let him come to me and drink.  If a person believes in me, rivers of living water will flow out from his heart."

From Andrew Peterson's song "Little Boy Heart Alive":
"Feel the beat of a distant thunder
It’s the sound of an ancient song
This is the Kingdom calling
Come now and tread the dawn

Come to the father
Come to the deeper well
Drink of the water
And come to live a tale to tell

Pages are turning now
This is abundant life
The joy in the journey
Is enough to make a grown man cry
With a little boy heart alive
Take a ride on the mighty lion
Take a hold of the golden mane
This is the love of Jesus
So good but it is not tame"

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


         This evening I took a walk around my neighborhood.  I was listening to this album and thinking about freedom and forgiveness.  There was something on my mind that I needed to let go of.   The feeling of freedom is amazing!  No matter what I've done, how I've failed- I am forgiven.  I don't need to wallow in sins that have been paid for by the death of Jesus.  I am FREE!
        Free means that I can pursue Jesus with all of my heart, soul, strength, and time.  Free means that my heart has been transferred to a kingdom that cannot be shaken.  Free means that sin lies DEAD, and with Christ sin can be defeated and destroyed.
"For you were called to freedom, brothers. Only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for the flesh, but through love serve one another." 
~Galatians 5:13
        Now the hard part- actually doing it.  Not just talking and thinking about reading my Bible, but actually reading it.  Not just planning to pray, but praying.  Spending time with good books and investing in my family.  Confessing sin.  Holding my tongue.  Not defaulting to the Internet when I have free time.  Choosing to be grateful rather than grumble.  Choosing God.

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Poetry: He Is Near

"He Is Near"
October 28, 2008

The sun will set
The clouds roll in
The darkness will engulf us

Yet he is near
He sticks close
His light will dwell inside us

The valley is dark
The road much narrow
The trials hard to bear

Yet he is help
He guides our steps
He will sanctify us

Friday, April 29, 2011

Poetry: Past, Present, Future

Being 13 was a big year for me, in a lot of ways, learning, growing, struggling, dreaming.  That was the year I attended a Rebelution conference, got baptized, wrote like crazy, watched a lot of US politics and dreamed.   It was also a year I wrote a lot of poems.  So, I'm planning on posting a few!   I didn't follow any rhyme or reason or rhythm, and they wouldn't win awards, but they came from my heart.  As I read them, I am strongly tempted to do some editing before they appear here, but I'll refrain.

 "Past, Present, Future"
November 21, 2008

Hey you
Over there
Stop lookin’ only to the past
Stop wishin’ just for the future
It’s time to live
In the here and now

Hey you
Over here
Start living for good now
Start making your life count
It’s time to live
For God right now

We should be
Eternity minded
But we also need
To be working
Right now

Our life now
Needs to be
Lived in the shadow
Of eternity
To do God’s will
Right here
Right now

Friday, April 15, 2011

Let us begin.


The rationale behind starting this blog up is:

~For a place to write all the thoughts that fill my head and make my hand way too sore when I write in my journal.
~For things I'm learning and wondering over
~For a place to put writing excerpts
~For marveling and reflecting on the marvelous grace and love of God at the Cross.