Friday, May 30, 2008

I'm Leaving on a Jet Plane

In a few hours (10 hours to be exact), I'll be taking to the friendly skies to visit Tennessee. I think I've been waiting for this day since...oh...Christmas. Don't get me wrong. I love Seattle and am proud to call it my home fifty weeks out of the year. There are just some days where I really wish I was back in what I half-jokingly call "the promised land."
My supervisor and I were talking about our philosophy of travel and the idea of 'going home' a couple months ago. He asked me when I really feel like I'm home when I visit TN. Is it landing at the airport in Nashville or actually being in the town I grew up in? My answer was: when I walk in the front door of my house. I love to travel, but there's nothing like walking in the front door and flopping down on the couch like I've done a thousand times before.

Thursday, May 29, 2008


I just had to show off my pretty new visa (minus identifying information) that came in the mail today!!! I think the friendly FedEx man was kind of confused about why I was waiting for him at the door :) This was the last major hurdle that we had to deal before leaving the country. Now all we have to worry about is what to pack. Thank you to those that were praying for the visa application process.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Top Three Tuesday

1. Seattle Coffee Shops. Not only do these places have great drinks, but they are also a great place to work outside of the office. It's almost like they expect large numbers of Seattlites to use their space as their own personal place of business. They all have free wi-fi (with the exception of Starbucks, but who goes there in this city of great independent coffee joints) and tables to work at. Guess where this post is being written from :)

2. Jeff Greer. Jeff , a church planter/musician/bartender, came to the Purple Door and did a music-in a couple of Thursdays ago. He shared some of his original music with us and talked to us about what the last couple of years has looked like for him. I appreciate that he was willing to be totally open with us even though he'd never met us before. Some of us are going to see him play at Q Cafe this Thursday night for a benefit concert.

3. The real Charlie Brown. I'm not talking about the comic strip character or it's creator. I'm talking about one of my grandpa's friends. He died last week in an accident. Charlie was a great Christian man that constantly invited Grandpa to Bible studies and talked to him about Jesus. He's one of the people that contributed to Grandpa becoming a Christian almost a decade ago. I only met him a few times (I remember off the top of my head: at my grandparents' anniversary and my great-grandmother's funeral), but his smiling face left an impression on me. I'm forever grateful for the part he played in my grandpa's life.


Monday, May 26, 2008

Random Post

So, here's what's going through my head...

1. Folklife was fun. The Northwest Folklife Festival is an annual festival at the Seattle Center. It features hundreds of musicians and street performers over a three day period. I went with my uncle and cousin on Saturday and had a blast. It was in the high-70s and sunny. A perfect day to listen to random music and watch a little girl balance on a ball, hula hoop, and play the violin at the same time. Seriously. Here are a few pictures from my experience.

2. I got my hair cut last week. I now have the perfect summer haircut. Even if the sun and humidity melt my hair, it still looks great :)

3. I'm ready to go home for a little while, but I'm not ready to leave Seattle. Last night, it hit me that I'll be in Tennessee soon and that means leaving the friends that I've made in Seattle. It almost made me physically sick. Can I be homesick for two places at once?

4. I started reading "The New Christians" by Tony Jones yesterday. Good idea? Maybe. It's a book about the emergent movement within (or on the edges of) Christianity. It's raising more questions than it answers. Oh, the tangled postmodern web we weave.

5. "I'm a product of my culture." I've been thinking about that statement since I talked to one of my parents on the phone. They commented on how I seem to have changed since I moved to Seattle (meaning I'm more liberal and talk about Jesus differently). It's true. I've changed. Moving to Seattle has given me the chance to explore territory that I wasn't comfortable exploring in TN. I've accepted some things I've tried, I've rejected others. I think that's the process that every person goes through daily without even thinking about it. My changes are just more noticeable.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Top Three Tuesday

Prayer Request Edition

1. Visa Applications. I sent the Indian visa applications to San Francisco last week. We've come across a couple minor problems since then. Please pray that we will get issued visas without any more problems. Without these visas, we can't go to India.

2. Cannon Beach. Those of us on staff are leaving for a retreat at Cannon Beach in...oh...ten minutes. We're going to be meeting up with other directors in our network of campus groups. Pray that this will be a refreshing time for all of us. Getting out of Seattle is a blessing sometimes :)

3. The Future. I'm not going to get real specific on this one. Let's just say that I'm a long-term planner and God isn't into giving me long-term plans. Pray that I will trust Him and that He will let me in on the secret of what my life will be.


Monday, May 19, 2008

Pictures and a Song

I went to the U-District Street Fair on Saturday and Sunday. They shut down 41st-50th Street of the Ave for hundreds of vendors/performers and thousands of community members to come together. All in the hottest weather that Seattle has seen in a long time (it was probably pushing the 90s).

In the South, every fair worth mentioning has at least one church booth present. At the street fair, I didn't see any churches represented, but I did see the Humanists of Washington and representatives of the local communist party. I also saw an "Ask the Atheist" booth, but I thought it would be in bad taste to take a picture of the guy.

This is my new tattoo. (At least for the next couple of weeks.) Our dream of doing "'Have A Tat' for Humanity" finally became a reality on Friday. There was food, t-shirts, and henna tattoos all around. We have lots of extra t-shirts, so if you want one please let me know. They're $5 :)

Also, I've been listening to the song "Oh My God" by Jars of Clay a lot lately. The part that I keep listening to over and over is the bridge of the song:

Sometimes I cannot forgive
And these days, mercy cuts so deep
If the world was how it should be, maybe I could get some sleep
While I lay, I dream we're better,
Scales were gone and faces lighter
When we wake, we hate our brother
We still move to hurt each other
Sometimes I can close my eyes,
And all the fear that keeps me silent falls beneath my heavy breathing,
What makes me so badly bent?
We all have a chance to murder
We all feel the need for wonder
We still want to be reminded that the pain is worth the thunder

Friday, May 16, 2008

Prince Caspian

Wow. It feels like I haven't blogged in a long time. Not much has been going on lately. I've been thinking some (what I think are) deep thoughts, but I haven't fully processed them yet. More on that later.
I went to the midnight showing of Prince Caspian last night/this morning. Despite what the mixed reviews say about it, I thought it was a great movie. Sure, it's not as awe-inspiring as the first movie, but sequels rarely are.
My C.S. Lewis scholar opinion: The movie deviates a lot from the book. Parts of the book that were only a couple of pages take up a lot of time in the movie. They switch events around and don't fully explain some stuff. Parents, be aware that the movie is also darker than the book.
My average movie watcher opinion: Sure, it's a loooong movie, but I never found myself wishing that it was over. I was actually kind of sad when it ended. I also appreciate that they added a little bit of humor in there.
Linds' rating: A

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Top Three Tuesday

1. Solo: An Uncommon Devotional. This devotional book is based on a way of studying the Bible called lectio divina. It focuses on very carefully and thoughtfully reading a short passage from the Bible, thinking through certain questions, praying honestly about the things that come to mind while reading the passage, and then ultimately living out the passage. I enjoyed doing a public lectio divina at one of our teach-ins so I was really excited when I saw this book on Petey's blog. I started yesterday and can already tell that this is going to be awesome.

2. "The West Wing". I got the Season 2 box set at Target the other day for a really cheap price. I love this show because it's fun, but it also makes me think.

3. Mozilla Thunderbird. So, most of you have heard of Mozilla's version of a web browser called Firefox. Thunderbird is Mozilla's take on Microsoft Outlook. I've been using it for a few months now and I totally love it. Like most people my age, I have a couple email addresses that I use on a regular basis. Thunderbird downloads all my emails onto my computer and organizes them for me. And it's free. What could be better than that?


Friday, May 9, 2008


"Sometimes I wonder how we got to this point. Why did pagan onlookers hold the early church in such high respect, but today's non-Christians view the modern-day church with such disdain? I think one of the main culprits has been our paradigm of evangelism. In the name of 'getting someone saved,' we have primarily focused on communicating a message of truth to the world. There's nothing wrong with that, except that we've prioritized the verbals over the nonverbals, the message over the method, that is to say, the proclamation over the posture...Focusing on what we say without regard to how we say it doesn't work in marriage, with our kids, in politics, or in any other social arrangement. So why do we think that it would work with God?"

- Hugh Halter, "The Tangible Kingdom"

Thursday, May 8, 2008


I have a question that I would love to hear everyone's answer to. Seriously, everyone. Comment away (even if it's anonymously).

Why are you a follower of Jesus? If you're not a follower of Jesus, why is that?

Thank you for participating in my interactive blog :)

Wednesday, May 7, 2008


What I've learned today:

1. Thinking a few choice words while getting a shot doesn't make it hurt any less. (I got my Hep A booster and the second round of JE. One more round and I'm done for this trip!)

2. Just because it clicks doesn't mean it's broken. (I took my car to the mechanic. He put some kind of goop on the belt and then told me if I could live with the weird clicking sound that everything was fine for now. Stella is interstate worthy once again!)

3. I kind of like the American Empire at times. (Did I hear a collective gasp? Let me explain. I spent the better part of the afternoon staring down and/or speaking in soothing tones to the India Visa website. Thanks to the American Empire and its connections, I don't have to spend my time going through this process for every country that I want to visit.)

4. Not everything that tweets is a bird. (I'm now a semi-proud member of Twitter. Now if I only knew how to use it.)

Top Three Tuesday

1. Reese's Eggs. Before Easter every year, Reese's comes out with egg-shaped peanut butter cups. I think they have the perfect ratio of peanut butter to chocolate, therefore making them my favorite candy of all time. The week after Easter I go out and buy a few packs of these treats (usually half off) so I can enjoy them for weeks to come. I finished my last one of the year today.

2. Stuff Christians Like. This is a Christian spin-off of the blog "Stuff White People Like." I think that it's good when we can make fun of ourselves. It keeps us from getting too high and mighty.

3. Seattle Metro System. It may not be the best public transportation system in the world, but it does pretty well for our city. My car has been sick lately so I've been taking the bus a lot more. Now that I have the routes pretty much figured out, it isn't really that bad. Plus, it's only $1.50 for two hours (or three if the bus driver is friendly and fudges the time on the ticket a little). With the price of gas on the rise, the bus system rocks my socks off.


Friday, May 2, 2008

'Useful Idiots' No More

I usually stay away from blogging about political issues. Mainly, this is because I'll end up offending somebody. This blog is not written to offend, unless you think Rush Limbaugh speaks all truth or that voting Democrat will reverse all the evils in this nation.
I recently came across this story on It's entitled "'An Evangelical Manifesto' criticizes politics of faith." On Wednesday, some conservative leaders are going to release a self-critical 'manifesto' detailing how Christians on both sides of politics have twisted the spirit of Christianity to suit their own causes. Although the document is signed by about eighty Christian leaders, big-name leaders such as James Dobson didn't sign it. Southern Baptists weren't even invited to the party (which should be a signal to the SBC that something isn't quite right).
My reaction after getting over my natural skepticism: this is great! Sure, major leaders didn't sign the manifesto, but at least there are those in the mainstream that are starting to realize that something is horribly wrong. As with AA, the first step is to admit that there is a problem. My sincere hope and prayer is that the manifesto is not a dead document from the beginning. It would be great if this is the beginning of major change in mainstream Christianity.
I'm personally of the mindset that Jesus doesn't have a favorite political party. Actually, I think that he is disgusted by politics and most of what we have done in his name. There has been a lot of talk in this election about the 'moral high ground.' The truth is that neither side has it. Where does this leave Christians that truly want to do what Jesus would want? I really don't know. I'll let you know if God sends me some divine revelation on this topic. Right now, I'm just interested to see how the manifesto addresses some of these issues and if it's really a step away from the status quo.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Top Three Thursday

...because I procrastinated too long on Tuesday :)

1. Pandora. If you've never been to this site, you really need to check it out. It's an extension of the Music Genome Project which predicts bands/songs you'll like based on your favorites. For example, I have a Relient K radio station that plays Relient K and other bands that sound like them.

2. The nurse at the Travel Clinic. Anybody that can give me a monster shot without me feeling it makes my 'favorite people' list. Seriously.

3. 'Major Dad'. My sister and I used to watch reruns of this show before school when we were tired of 'Saved by the Bell' reruns. I recently found the complete series on It makes me want to curl up on the couch and eat cereal. All I would need for a complete flashback is my mom telling me if I don't get ready for school soon I'll be late :)