Sunday, March 30, 2008

Pictures and a Song

Last week, the cherry blossom trees in the quad bloomed. The sky stayed clear long enough one day for me to go out a take a few pictures. Here are a couple of my favorites. I have a feeling I'm going to love Seattle in the spring :)

Also, I've had the bridge from a BarlowGirl song stuck in my head today. It's from a song that I listen to every time I have to leave my family and friends again to go back to Seattle. I guess the bridge happens to speak to what I'm going through right now.

"Even when the tears are falling
When I find I fear the calling
You remind me
Words You've spoken over my life
Promises I've yet to see
You comfort me"

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Top Three Tuesday

1. "Anyone who is capable of getting themselves made President should on no account be allowed to do the job." - Douglas Adams
I'm starting to believe this more and more every day as I watch the news. I just wish that there was someone running that had a consistent voting record, never changed loyalties, and said what they really felt instead of what would make them popular.

2. "I wish the election was being held tomorrow. I'm bored!" - Tom Hanks

3. "Blessed are the young, for they shall inherit the National Debt." - Herbert Hoover
The economic stimulus package passed recently. That means that every taxpayer will get around $600 back from the federal government in May. They want us to turn around and spend this money so that America can avoid a recession in the present. I'm not an economist but I'm wondering: is anyone paying attention to my future?

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Like Thomas

A reflection after reading John 20...

She walked up to the door and gave a quick glance to the left and to the right. Knocking the secret code on the door she thought, If the army really wants to take us, they won’t need a secret code to get in.

Somebody opened the door. Stepping in, she saw that it was Peter. Barely glancing at him, she started say “I brought some food with me. The bread…”

“Lindsay, we saw him. He’s alive!”

“Slow down. What did you say?”

“We saw him.”

“Him who?”

Him. Yeshua. He’s alive!”

“Have you gone mental Peter? You may have been off denying that you even knew him, but I was there. I saw him die. I felt the earth shake and saw the sky grow dark. I witnessed it all. He’s dead.” Lindsay felt tears bubbling to the surface even before she finished her statement.

“No, you don’t understand…” Peter said slightly frustrated. “Do you remember everything that Yeshua said about having to leave and then coming back? He wasn’t talking about taking a trip to Egypt. He was talking about dying and coming back to life. He was in this very room less than an hour ago. I’m telling you. He’s alive.”

Lindsay looked around the room. Everyone there had the same look as Peter, a look of peace and wide-eyed hope. Still, Lindsay couldn’t bring herself to believe that the man that she had seen die only a couple days earlier was really alive. Yes, Yeshua was alive in the next life, but certainly not in this one.

“I don’t believe it. I won’t. People don’t just come back to life.”

She took the food that she had brought for the group into the kitchen and started putting it on the shelves. Then, she heard a voice behind her.

“Liz.” The name that only he called her.

Lindsay wheeled around. It was Yeshua! No, wait. Was this for real or was she giving into her hopes that Peter was right?

“Liz, I created you. I know how your mind works. Go ahead. Touch me. Ask me questions. Anything so that you will believe that it is really me. I don’t mind.”

He had the same kind eyes, the same smile. She looked at his wrists. They still had the nail marks from where he had been nailed to the cro

She ran toward him and hugged him, tears streaming down her face. “Yeshua. My Lord and my God!”

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Top Three Thursday (Sports Edition)

...because I just wasn't inspired on Tuesday.

1. Rodeo. UTM's annual rodeo is coming up on April 10 and I won't be there. It's a sad moment in my life. I LOVE going to the rodeo, hanging out with people, watching the different events, and cheering when the cowboy comes out alive. The person that buys me a shirt from the rodeo will not only be my BFF, they will be my BFFE :)

2. Baseball. The season is upon us and the Cardinals are going to win it all this year. Now, I may not truly believe that deep down inside, but I'm wishing and hoping and thinking and praying...

3. Soccer. It's the world's sport (minus the US because we are too busy playing sports like football). I don't understand much about soccer, but I love the sport anyway. Seattle's soccer team is going to be MLS next year and will probably get beat up by the other big teams, but this year I can watch them dominate lesser known teams. Go Seattle Sounders!


Thursday, March 13, 2008

Airport Blues

Here I am. Stuck at the Seattle airport. I'm trying to get to Oklahoma City to be with my family for a couple of days. Southwest had other ideas about how my day should go.
Here's the story so far: I got up at a ridiculous hour this morning to get ready to go. Around 7:30 am, Jody dropped me off at the airport. I walked in and tried to check in my luggage. That's when I found out that Southwest canceled my flight from Seattle to Denver along with a few other flights from our airport. (Note to self: they're not lying about checking your flight status before you leave home.) The nice lady at the desk told me the only way that I would get to OKC at all today was if I took a 12:50pm flight to Kansas city, have a 3 hour lay over, and arrive in OKC at 10:40 tonight. I wasn't thrilled, but when she put it that way...
My plans for the next three hours of my life? Use the internet (which I didn't have to pay too much for, thank goodness), get some work done, buy some food so I don't get crankier than I already am, and maybe read a book.
I just keep repeating to myself "joy in adversity, joy in adversity." Maybe if I say it enough times it will actually happen :)

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

Top Three Tuesday

1. The Cobalt Season. I know, I know, they made it onto my list last month. They never cease to amaze me though. I just bought their album "But I Tell You." The language they use isn't always parent-approved, but the lyrics continue to describe some of the same feelings and yearnings that I have dealt with lately.
2. Anne Rice. No. I didn't mistype. Anne Rice, the author of numerous vampire books. She wrote a book a couple years ago called "Christ the Lord: Out of Egypt" that I've been reading this week. It's her well-researched musings on what Jesus' childhood was like. Anne is Catholic so I don't exactly agree with everything in the book, but it has caused me to come up with my own ideas of what Jesus was like as a kid. I respect anyone that challenges me to think outside the box.
3. Grandma Lee. Everyday I think about the things that I remember about my great-grandmother and what I will tell my kids about her one day. I haven't fully processed exactly what it means for my life that she is gone. I think that being around my family in Oklahoma Thursday-Saturday will help me to do that. All I know right now is that she was a lady that truly rocked my socks off.

Friday, March 7, 2008

National Peanut Month

I've been looking for a topic to blog on all day. I didn't want anything sad or too thought provoking (I have to give my mind a rest sometimes). I found my topic while checking my latest email from Pillsbury. According to this semi-trustworthy source, it is National Peanut Month.
I couldn't believe my eyes when I saw that we have a whole month to celebrate peanuts. Somebody, somewhere, finally got something right. I only believe that peanuts (and their smushed up brother peanut butter) are God's way of telling humanity that He loves us.
As a way to kick off this wonderful month of peanut celebration, I send you to this website. Click around. Enjoy. Make yourself a peanut butter sandwich! (Unless you're allergic. Then, all I have to say is that you have my deepest condolences.)
A bientôt and have a great day!

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Grandma Lee

I just got the call that I somehow knew would be coming soon. Dad called to tell me that Grandma Lee, my great-grandmother, died today. I can't even start to describe all the emotions that I feel. I loved her deeply and I know that she felt the same for me.
Grandma Lee is the woman that I like to think that I got a large chunk of my personality from. She was spunky, independent, and well-traveled. Her stories of Africa inspired me to take my own trip to the continent. She was a rock-solid Christian with deep convictions. Her first question to me was if I had a boyfriend yet and she always encouraged me that the day would come when I would find someone right for me. She told me it would take a very special man to keep up with me :)
I keep going over and over scenes of her in my head. What I remember from when I was younger and more recent conversations. The time I remember most clearly was a couple of years ago right before I went to Africa. We went over her memories again and then she asked what I wanted to do in life. I told her that I wanted to do missions, but I didn't know where. She asked me if I was afraid to which I said I was a little afraid because I had no clear direction yet. Grandma Lee looked me straight in the eyes and said "If you're doing the Lord's will, there is never a reason for you to be afraid."

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Top Three Tuesday

I've decided to rename my weekly list of things that rock my socks off 'Top Three Tuesday.' I figure that if I can't be a great Baptist in theology, I might be able to win some brownie points with the convention by using alliteration :) Just kidding. Sorta...

1. The sun. Even though Seattle is known for rain, we see the sun every once in a while. Today happens to be one of those days. I'm currently basking in the sun getting the 15 minutes of the bright orange ball needed to activate my vitamin D.
2. Running. I used to hate it, but I'm starting to embrace it. It makes me feel better about myself and makes my whole day just a little bit happier. Maybe I'll get to the point where I can do a half-marathon one day. Maybe.
3. Decaf coffee. Caffeine and I have a rocky relationship (I love it, it hates me). We finally got some decaf espresso here at the Purple Door. This makes me incredibly happy and causes me to smile every time I pass the espresso machine. Now I just need to learn how to make espresso drinks.


Sunday, March 2, 2008


I just finished watching "The Chronicles of Narnia" for what has to be the millionth time. For some reason, I just can't get enough of it and it's not just because I'm a budding C.S. Lewis scholar :)
As a kid, my mom read my sister and I the Chronicles. I didn't like them much back then because something seemed wrong with them, especially in "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe." When I wrote my senior thesis in college on C.S. Lewis, I reflected back on why I didn't like the books then. It was because it naturally felt wrong to me that the 4 children in the book had to be separated from Aslan, the Jesus figure of the series. I didn't understand why they couldn't just stay in his presence for the rest of their lives.
I think that I watch and read "Narnia" over and over because it awakens something in me that is deeply powerful. It's a yearning for perfection and to be in the presence of my Aslan. It's a ever-renewing realization that I'm meant for and loved by Someone greater than this world.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

What Happened?

Last night during evenings prayers at The New Conspirators conference somebody read the passage from Luke about the Good Samaritan. As a kid, this story was always followed by a reminder that we are supposed to be nice to others/be a friend. Because I heard it so much growing up, I stopped really listening to what the passage has to say.
The story is not about being a friend. Yes, we are supposed to be nice to those around us, but it's not the point that Jesus was trying to make. If we someone in need, we are supposed to do something about it. Not later. Now. When I read the story, I see the priest thinking "I'll go get someone that is better trained at meeting the physical and emotional needs of those that have been mugged." Then, I see the Levite passing by saying "I really should give more money to charity for poor people like that guy over there. Now, can I really spare any more money after already tithing..." All the guy really needed was for someone to take care of his basic needs until he was back on his feet.
Living in Seattle, I'm constantly surrounded by the homeless. Usually, I avoid eye contact and keep walking. That means that I'm avoiding my responsibility to help my neighbor. Maybe all the person needs is for someone to stop and talk to them about their life. Maybe they need a couple of dollars to get something to eat besides junk food.
In a society and culture where preachers are telling us that God wants us to be comfortable and stable (the prosperity gospel), we often skip over the words that we don't want to hear: the words that Jesus spoke about going the extra mile, loving everyone equally, sacrificing our time and money in order that someone might have a warm meal today. I think that the church has fallen down on one of it's main responsibilities. How can we expect someone to care two cents about Jesus if those that claim to love Jesus don't care two cents about them?