Wednesday, July 30, 2008
i think i'll get more excited as i get back into it...to be honest there's a part of me that's so excited to finally have my desired role per the change a few years ago. took a long time to get that moved from "words" to "action", but the lessons learned in the meantime have been priceless. so, we'll see how it goes...what actually sticks. ;)
one bummer that keeps on coming to mind though...part of me is not excited to do some of the "parent" stuff again. don't get me wrong...i LOVE working with kids...it's just that it's parents who sometimes make it...unpleasant. and my struggle...especially in a christian school where deeper opportunities should abound...i end up dealing with the occasional "religious" people...very into appearances. really hard for me to stay professional sometimes...especially when i see what it does to kids...well, heck, and a culture of people who find faith revolting because of a few "white washed" ducks.
but, i guess we'll just keep swinging...
so...here's to a fabo month off...and so many cool experiences...and rest.
now looking ahead to...possibility?...maybe so. i'll rev up more excitement as 8/1 moves ever closer. :)
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Monday, July 28, 2008
k, so the series is a mix of 'imago dei' (what it means to be made in the image of god) and then bringing that to relationships. i've just had 'life in eden' on my mind so much lately and then the part of the story where they sin and then realize they are naked...thus beginning to make coverings for themselves out of fig leaves. the especially strange part to me was the section where god comes looking for them, but they are hiding because they've realized their nakedness. and god says to them "who told you that you were naked?". very bizarre interchange. but it points so clearly to the fact that we were made to hear 'who we are' from god...run around "naked" in a sense...being his girl or guy. but as a result of the fall, we've chosen to find our identity from work or people or hosts of other things...trying to fill ourselves with rather than be released to "bring" something to those people or situations.
and then we can't get passed all the fig leaves...which aren't always sinful things. sometimes they are wounds. sometimes circumstances. sometimes great gifts and talents....but nevertheless, things we hold up as "who we are". makes us into classic "evaluators" rather than the "relators" that we were destined for. ugh...it just is so sad how we define each other apart from the heart...labels everywhere...with our own judgment as to the worth of that person...disgusting.
so, it moved into 'making peace' with our fig leaves...because god has (2 Cor 5:16-21). makes sense really...how can we love the "unloveable" if deep inside we believe ourselves to be "unloveable"? painful fig leaf. sometimes that peace is being gracious to ourselves for past stuff...letting it go. sometimes it's giving god ownership of really cool things about ourselves. all so we can begin to return to eden in a way...the days where we walked with god and ruled...all in a beautiful, adventurous relationship with a god who would love, love, love to tell us who we are...the right and perfect fit. making us encouragers and challengers rather than...well, you know.
the cool implications of this...first, we extend grace to ourselves...but then we are free to be released more fully into "who we are"...and then we can turn and see each other...not for the fig leaves...but for the heart. and then...we can walk out and "see" people who desperately need to be "seen".
i guess that was the message. but the cool thing...well, a couple actually...
the visual that i used...hanging big "fig leaves" full of all our "definers"...and then swiping over them with red paint...each leaf's swipe gradually forming a big red arrow that pointed to god's view of us as his children. that came in a dream. it was totally not me. it was one of the stranger ways to receive a teaching tool...:)
the other cool thing...what meant the most to me actually...was that this sermon involved so little of me and my false needs for performance identity. hah!...fig leaf. what an awesome parting! i haven't felt so little fleshly feasting in a long while. very strange but cool.
so...a cool opportunity, i guess.
and don't worry...i'm sure tim and ryan can sort out anything that was theologically "incorrect"...hehe. ;)
Thursday, July 24, 2008
i went down to my old stomping grounds today (yay, bethel!) to meet with my advisor. the cool thing is that he suggested that i switch from doing a whole literature review of my topic to a curriculum project. i would so love that because it makes the thesis go from grand 'ol boring discussion to classroom practical. i'm so excited.
the other cool thing that he suggested was that he could help me get it published when it's all done! oh...my...gosh! that would be AWESOME!
so, we'll see what happens...but in the meantime...being up to my elbows in papers...a fun prospect at the end of the tunnel!
Friday, July 18, 2008
so, it's been a massive week of 'longing'. it's been a little rough sometimes...but also very cool. ironically, it's also the upcoming topic for the 'being god's girl' class...so god must be giving me some hand's on material...:) and remember that i also have a real mystical side to my walk with god which i love so madly because it's made my relationship with him so real and experiential. so, i heard a song on kdwb this week and the lyrics were just bashing me upside the heart. it's a teeny-bopper chris brown song called forever. it's all about a guy who's trying to get a girl to dance with him all night...but when i got my hands on it, i found that it's totally been what i've experienced this week...with jesus as my dance partner, relentless beckoning...what he sings to my heart alllllll the time...if only i'd accept the offer...find my longing's satisfaction in him.
so, here it is...try to step passed some of the non-applicable stuff...although if you really pay attention to the lyrics, you might find it relates to god's heart for us more than you'd think. notice the whirling light too...makes me think of the holy spirit.
k, enough jabbering...here you go. :)
Thursday, July 17, 2008
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
i have no idea what's going on with the world...is there nothing normal anymore??? hehe...
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
i've also had a lot of fogginess about topics, flow, etc...and the immense wisdom of others too. there's a definite struggle between the weight of sharing just my own journey into this...the fact that my journey has been more 3-d circling as opposed to linear...and then there's stopping to ask if there's something different that god wants shared for/to the others.
PLUS...with a few exceptions, the class is for women who are "older" than me. it's a little intimidating. but i'm finding...per a few conversations...that a heart is a heart is a heart...and we just need to be real with it. let the holy spirit do his thing... so i've got to step passed my nerves. yikes...:)
one thing that i've stumbled on...satan does not like too much talk about this! convinces me all the more that women hold such great value...and immense threat...that he's worked over-time to keep us under his boot. jackass! i've had such bizarre battles in preparing for this thing...whispers of how 'this bible isn't even relevant for women', etc. but it hit me the other day...one of the greatest potential gifts for women is intimacy...being so beautifully relational and all...so much so that verses here and there "instructing" wouldn't be the typical voice of god's heart. so instead, i've been looking at specific stories (relationships) of women and going from there. man, i can't wait to find out the rest of their stories when i get to go be with god. :)
we'll see how it goes. i'm certainly not perfect...which is maybe my biggest challenge of personal acceptance with this opportunity.the other cool thing is that i may be doing another sermon soon. we'll see if it's in god's cards...may not be which is cool too. i've been getting to go to the 'sermon prep' meetings with uncle tim and pastor ryan (super fun and interesting)...the topics stem from 'imago dei'...which i love, love, love. again, i expect a ton of battle with the accuser over the deal...it's just so interesting to see what god is doing...lots of unexpected surprises.
Monday, July 14, 2008
but still...i would totally do it all over again...well, maybe with a little smidgen of pain-killer. :)
now, the only thing to face is the occasional stupid comment. but that's ok...i'll chalk it up to opinion.
seriously though...can i just ask...why do we make certain activities "evil" just because it was a part of our "lost days"? isn't it weird? i mean there's an obvious balance, but it's been really interesting to hear people's reasons for why they are "anti-tattoo". getting a tattoo when on drugs at one point doesn't make getting a tattoo wrong necessarily. shouldn't that one have been about blowing one's heart/mind on...say, drugs or something maybe??...that or something deeper i would think. i used to eat massive handfuls of cookie dough and chase it down with large quantities of alcohol...so i'm obviously an anti-alcohol AND anti-cookie girl now...heh? i just think it's funny how we still focus on layers rather than cores sometimes...and i guess getting a tattoo is bringing that up for me lately. :)
oh well...as for me and my tattoo...we be lovin' each other. ;)
Thursday, July 10, 2008
before i say anything else...it hurt like a MOTHER! @#$%!!!!!
but it was so worth it for me...totally no regrets!
here we are waiting VERY nervously...
jody went first, which was good on one hand because she seemed to show that it was totally pain-free! made my anxiety drop dramatically...until it was my turn! hah! i mean, it's totally cool that she has that 'mother instinct' that says to grin and bear it so that you don't freak out the masses...but...wow, jody is a MACHINE! she held that in!!! i'm forming a club in her honor...
here's me right before. i had to bring out the knuckle to sooth myself...hehe. haven't had to do that for a while now. :)
here we go! this is brian...he designed it for me too! i was really nervous about it because the idea has a ton of meaning for me...so i wanted it to be just right. but when he brought out what his ideas were...i just knew it was right. i got all emotional and squeezed his arm...yes, i believe i freaked him out...but we all need a little freaky from time to time. :)
i should also mention that jody held my hand...THE ENTIRE TIME...
and rach did an awesome job of encouraging and...photographing EVERY bloody detail. :)
this was THE most painful part...the outline. holy mother of all that is holy!!!
coloring it in...just burns...oh...except when he's remotely near a bone...i.e. MY SHOULDER BLADE. :)
almost done... praise jesus!
and there she is...the terrorized skin and blood goop kinda distract...and of course, i'll have massive itchiness, flaking skin (eww!) and some pain...but in a few weeks she'll be beautiful.
this was so emotional for me. what the thing represents...i can't even put into words how my heart feels about those things. it has hurt a TON just to get to the point where my heart believes it...the blooming rose, imago dei and name. the rest just comes out in tears. god is so good and will continue to be.
i actually felt a little lonely last night...i suspect i wanted to share it with someone i miss...but me and god were cool with it. and today i get to go be with my mom and dad...which is the perfect spot to be all messy...and of course, they expect that. hehe...
Wednesday, July 9, 2008
some of you know what i'm writing about today. others won't, but that's ok. writing this out is more for me anyway.
i will say before anything else that one thing god has taught me in this experience is a new sensitivity for girls and women who experience these things. not being believed, having people down-play it or pass it off, starting to feel like you are the insane one at times because everything is so unbelievably weird...the loneliness that sets in as a result.
but the other cool thing that i experienced as a result was the stand of brothers and sisters. ironically...an authentic community. god graciously allowed my experience to be witnessed after a while...and the defense of family and friends was so freeing.
and let me tell you...the fact that there are others like me, experiencing the same individual...while depressing on one hand...is also liberating.
some years ago my family and friends made a new "friend". and 20/20 hindsight would say that there were mistakes made very early on...and ownership of those has been taken...but there began a very bizarre interaction. some would like to use the word 'relationship' at this point...but i wouldn't go so far in the least. very strange conversations, emails, blogs, chance meetings and uncomfortable interactions...basically, there was a very unhealthy attachment and i was being stalked. by the time i started getting nervous, others were starting to see it too. i started documenting everything, keeping copies of all electronic communication. part of that was for the purposes of confrontation/intervention, but to be honest, i was gearing up for a protective order if it came to that.
we brought my dad into the situation at one point so that he could help us address it. what is interesting is that he has taken more of the hit than a lot of the others involved...which is so strange to me...as he came in after our initial attempts to address it.
very clearly, we all realized that this wasn't an issue of conscious ill-doing. today, i actually feel that one side of the person isn't even aware of the other. this was a situation involving a mentally ill person...or at least some kind of emotional/spiritual wounding with subsequent obsessiveness etc.
i really have no idea...but dealing with it in the conventional means was not even remotely productive. constant, continuous misinterpretation...circling illogic.
i finally just had to cut off all contact. and as a group we finally just had to part ways.
the aftermath of it all has been quite sad. a ton of gossip and people who need to enter into drama without all the information has reaped the whirlwind. it's actually quite sad to me because someone who desperately needs mental help is being allowed to stay trapped due to the "sides" that strangely need to exist.
but here's the issue that's been on my mind lately as my life has begun to return to the realm of peace...i still experience a great deal of anger for how i was mistreated, how my family and friends who tried to help were and continue to be treated...and i'm very conscious of wanting to protect others from the craziness too.
and i really believe in bringing things to god for him to heal, having him help with the anger, helping me forgive...and i'm doing that as i run into the issue. but is there really anything to forgive? what i mean is, if someone is not consciously aware of their illness or the delusion that is their reality...how accountable are they? at most, they need to get help...but taking responsibility for actions prompted out of a sort of insanity...???...i'm not sure what to think about that.
so, i don't know...i guess it's just something i'm wrestling with. how much to stand up and shout about, how much to let go...
Tuesday, July 8, 2008
so deb wants to keep trying to get passed it or venture off into the woods to try to get by...but the thing kept on moving...and i kept screaming. :)
so, we finally called dad. buuuuut...he was no help. he just informed us that skunks can squirt up to 30 feet! he also suggested that we not provoke it as the smell would linger for days...which would include his back yard. it was a wonderful science lesson but it didn't get us off the dang hill.
so, i called joy. and with enough begging, pleading, and convincing screams of terror...she got in her 4-runner and drove up the little hill...and then drove us to the bottom...from whence we could conclude our hike.
i'm not going to point out how much she was loving that she rescued us "from a little skunk". (shut up, joy...it was freaking scary...and possibly horridly smelly.) :)
and a few minutes later...post-pewww...i was safe in my pot pourri home crossing pepe' off my favorite cartoon list.
Monday, July 7, 2008
and for all of you who may want to marry a 'package deal' trinidian guy...sorry, he's married! :)
we all face challenges every day. maybe not the same kind, maybe not even the kind that make us want to curl up in a hole somewhere...but still, it helps to have the community of heart-people. god is so awesome...to give us good friends!
so this is hardy's advice from the heart for this single gal...and i love it! and by the way...this could overflow into so many areas...unbelievable!
"the Lord knows the beginning and the end of a thing and he has allowed you through it and even brought you through. there was something valuable to be gained in it, but most of all, there is something also unto his glory...
The Lord knows your heart's desire. He wired you with all that appeals to you in a man; therefore he knows the type of man that you would love and who would love and understand you. Now, you must come to terms with your heavenly Father and ask him to send that right person into your life. He should come in the very path that God is presently leading you right now in your life. He may show up unexpectedly or he may be right there in plain sight. If someone is not sure about you, pray that God will make them sure. Call forth the things in your life that are not as though they were. Start praying and thanking God for an unknown husband, pray for him in the job/ministry/whatever he might be doing, pray for his protection, for wisdom, for strength, for God's will upon his life - all the things you would pray for him if ye had actually known him. It does not always have to be spriritual things that you talk to God about only - tell him about the physical contentions of the heart, and your mind's confusion about men and even your own self. Ask him for a Psalm 112 man and see if you actually know any that you really have the blushes for as well. If you have faith enough, list a few prerequisites (realistic ones). Also, think about the expected imperfections in him that you would be willing to live with such as bathroom habits, laundry, leaving coffee cups around, body hair, wants to have a pet gorilla etc.... then think about what you would also want him to accept about you such as, eating chocolate cake for lunch, white water rafting missions in Amazon, don't like doing the dishes at the same time while cooking, or eating with chop sticks on Sundays etc....
You'll never find the perfect man - there is none. But you will find one that you really like and so much that you are willing to put up with a few things that you don't like. Ofcourse I do not speak of alcohol and cigarettes or anything that awful. those should be on your definite no -no list.
It might even be that you might have to give up certain trivials for a good relationship, make some improvement adjustments for a good relationship. But most importantly, don't look solely at what a man does for you to impress you - that's all fine and well for courtship. Look at the smaller things, how he does it - the things he would be normally doing if ye were to be married, the ordinary things, his ordinary tone of conversation, his living philosophy, his rationalizing, his convictions, his confidence level at different areas he faces etc... All these are indicators to help you figure out whether he is yours to keep or not.
the question should not be "when am I going to meet the right one?" it shoud be: "what am I willing to accept and reject in a husband?"
Jn 15 says: If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, then you shall ask what you will, and it shall be given. In other words, when you immerse your life in God and love to eat his words and will like cake, then you would walk and talk his will and ask for it as well, because really, there's nothing better."
Sunday, July 6, 2008
well, it's put the issue back on my mind again. actually...it's put the personal importance of it on my mind.
my favorite thing about this organization is that it takes the issue of abortion a bit further than an issue of "killing unborn children", which to be honest is kinda a not-so-ideal place to start if one wants to build bridges. fem-for-life makes it an issue about women...that "women deserve better". it's about the innate value that women have...and i think that gives people (who want to help a woman who has an unwanted pregnancy) a place from which to speak to the fears, the abandonment, the loneliness...speak from a place of worth.
well, the fact that this approach is so important to me...has become rather important to me. it's been like a "duh" moment. :)
i think this is...always has been maybe...a snapshot of something bigger...like a 'calling' hint or something. my love of the feminine worth is so much bigger than an abortion issue...light bulb moment...i think it's only the tip of some iceberg. it's kinda interesting...and i think will become more so...
Wednesday, July 2, 2008
my sis was talking about a friend last night who recently had a heart-wrenching break-up with a guy. i was completely shocked because it was evident for so long that there was a lot of love there. anyway, joy was talking about a conversation she recently had with the friend...saying to her that she really was praying that she'd be able to have a relationship someday where she wouldn't always have to be the "trooper". and of course, the friend was very much moved in that moment.
i have to say that no sooner did those words pop out of joy's mouth than i felt like my heart got a snake bite. caught me very much off guard.
but if god reveals that the shoe fits, we better take the opportunity to wear it...at least for a little while!
so i was up most of last night wrestling with that and thinking about the last couple of years. and with a little devastation found it very eye-opening to see the "trooper" in myself. something that i've not really wanted as the main self-descriptor...
and while i really believe that god's wired women with an unusual fierceness...a "trooper" ability...there are times where we use our gifting in places where it's not actually been called upon. so, part of me is a little weary, recalling places where that had to be the case...now just exhausted after it's over. and other spots...i am a little angry at the places where i decided to be the stubborn (maybe "determined" is the better term) "stick with it" person. or perhaps i'm actually angry at the places where that's all i ended up being. ahhh...the culmination of many "trooper" identities.
so, i guess i'm thinking about that. like my sis's friend, i really would like to find a relationship someday where i don't have to be a "trooper" too. in actuality, i'm realizing that the "brace myself" mentality may have been the thing that caused my nagging anxiety...that hesitation to be real. how can you after all when the other shoe is always going to drop? i want a relationship where there is a sacred place of rest...that area that breeds a sense of safety. hmm, intimacy. i'd rather be the "trooper" out of that foundation.
the cool thing is that this is something i believe god is teaching me with him. he's showing me a place of rest that allows me to display myself to him...lets me see him as he is. a beautiful vulnerability comes out there with him. and ironically, i actually feel authentic strength there.
it would be cool if that could overflow into a relationship with a man someday too. i would like that anyway...
so, a prayer for a girl a long ways away who has a broken heart...and for another who is also on the mend.