Thursday, January 21, 2010

Just to be alive is a magic art

I make lists. I really like lists. I make lists of things to buy. I make lists of homework, of residents names who've won stuff, of apartment names. I make lists in my sleep. And let me tell you, there is no better feeling to me than crossing something off my list that I accomplished.

But I have this checklist. I've never written it down, but it's there. My checklist for myself, for my life. Read my bible daily. Be a good RA. Call my grandma. Give money to people in need. Visit with friends. Love people.

If I check them off...I win. I'm a better person. I get to cross that off for the day. I've made myself feel more worthy of Jesus' love.

If I read my bible and journal every night and talk to Jesus then I get the check off "be a good Christian." If I call my grandma I get to check off "love someone I don't like" for the day.

Does anything sound a little wrong here? Does this sound like a pretty shoddy way to live?

I didn't really even realize I was doing it, until today, when I had a bad day. Just one bad day to make me realize a whole mess of things. Just one day where I didn't check off as many things as I wanted to.

I've been having good days. I've been having fantastic days. I've been singing and dancing and humming my way through life. And I thanked Jesus for it, I praised Jesus for it, I gave him the glory..for about 5 seconds.

And then I started to rely on myself for happiness. I started checking things off. Work out. Check. Write. Check. Potter's House time. Check. Call mom. Check.

Guess what didn't make the cut...praise Jesus....(insert blank space where I check should be)

Sampson talked tonight about how dozing off in our Christian life can lead to a deep sleep. I'm tired of falling asleep and living in a check list. Living in a check list sucks, I'm just throwin' that out there. Seriously, cause nobody can check off everything! It's impossible.

Jesus doesn't live by checklists. He doesn't look at his beloved kids and go, "Ok, I'm gunna fix this, this, and this. Check, check, check. Ok, she's a grown up Christian now." Ha. He lives by moments. He lives by breathing into each day. He lives by loving us in every way imaginable. He loves us in ways we understand. He loves us in ways we don't understand. He breathes magic into every single day.

And so I add one last thing to my list.

Stop making checklists -

This is Home (Every Breath is Magic) - Switchfoot (I've posted this a few times before, but this song is really speaking to me again)

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Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Never found enything else to do but waiting for you

Ever feel like this when you're waiting for Jesus?

I was getting ready to get in bed tonight. It was a little rocky of a night. Ever have one of those days where you look back and think, "well what good did I do for the kingdom of heaven today?" And the answer you come up with is "nothing." Yeah.

It's not that I felt like today was a particularly bad day. On the contrary, I got a lot done and am completely caught up on my homework. I even finished a poem (for now). And yet, I look back on today and am disappointed with myself.

I look back and think of things I could have and should have done differently, of the people I could have loved. Of the decisions that I should have made.

And I get ready to climb in bed and I hear the voice that I'm starting to recognize as the devil trying to disguise himself as Jesus saying, "You don't have just a little time for me? Just a little time in your crazy busy schedule? Or am I just not important enough to you?" Ouch. And I start to say back, "No, but when I get going with you it's hard to stop. When I start talking to you I can't pretend that there aren't some issues to face. When I start talking to you, I can't hide."

It's kinda sucky not being able to hide. And the majority of the time I talk to Jesus I hear "Be still, and know that I am God." Hence the tattoo. I find that quiet time usually is just waiting. An active waiting. A waiting that is being with Jesus in the process. A waiting WITH Jesus, not for him.

But waiting is hard. Waiting is usually quiet. And I tend to get like the little boy in the picture and wait with a bad attitude. I wait for Jesus instead of waiting WITH Jesus. It's so hard though! To wait. In my mind waiting is quiet. I hate being quiet with Jesus. The blanket gets torn off when I wait for Jesus and I am nothing but exactly what I am.

Even on the best days, even on the days when I am as high as a kite, that's not good. Me on my best day is not good.

But Jesus is good. I mean that's why he came right? I think maybe this is me going through my "rebellious" stage. I hate the feeling of being so out of control of my life. And the fact that when I do take control I mess it up doesn't seem to help things.

It's's ok. I just have to remind myself that's not that bad. If I can just get over the being vunerable thing.

Yeah...easier said than done. But as always, Jesus will see me through!

Waiting for You - Ben Harper

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Friday, January 15, 2010

Closed Doors

Coffee - check
Music - check
closed door - most definitely check

The world was spinning a few days ago. I didn't think it could get faster... has.

I haven't had my door closed for a long time, at least not while I've been in my room. I have been on constant go since I got back to school. It's taken all I have just to keep on top of my school work. I've been so happy I didn't even notice that I haven't stopped. Think rapid energizer bunny.

The funny thing is, I haven't felt overwelmed. Maybe that's why I didn't realize I've been on the go forever until I opened my day planner and realized I didn't have anything to do. Weird. I kept telling myself I would get to a coffee house sometime soon to blog. I can only seem to write when I'm at a coffee house. Why? I've developed a few theories.

1. An abundance of coffee to keep me awake.
2. Music and lots of it. And earphones too, so it shuts out all other noise.
3. The bustle that doesn't have to do with me. There is something about being in a place that is busy, but that has no obligation from me, that I love.
4. The big reason. Nobody interupts me at a coffee house. Yes there is the occasional hello from a friend, but if I'm in the corner with my earphones in there is like zero chance people will disturb me. It's nice

I don't keep my door closed much. If I'm in my room it's open. Kind of like my personality right? If I'm here I'm open. I wear my heart directly on my sleeve for all to see. I like this about myself. I like having connections with people because of it. Problem: open door=people. Ha. I love people. Seriously...but I think I underestimate how much I need me time. I haven't had me time for awhile.

I haven't written for awhile. Me time=writing. I can't tell you how good it feels to have my fingers move over the keys and process what's in my head into coherent patters. I love words.

So I sat down about 30 minutes ago and opened my planner, with my door open, to see what I had to do. And everything I could do...was crossed off, except for "write." Yes, I put "write" on my "To do" list. How pathetic. I have to schedule time to write. And I freaked out momentarily. I couldn't get to a coffee house. But Jesus reminded me of something. I have a door, and it closes.

And so with a lot of difficulty, but with much excitement, I made myself a cup of coffee, put a favorite song on repeat, and shut my door.


On Your Porch - The Format

"Cause whats left to lose?
I've done enough,
And if I fail then I fail but I gave it a shot"

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Saturday, January 9, 2010

The Worlds Got Me Dizzy Again

Well if "dizzy" didn't describe my life a few days ago it sure does now. There is something about the utter exhaustion that RA training does to my body that feels unlike anything ever. Probably cause it's a self induced exhaustion. I love it...I hate it. It's part of what makes my life interesting.

People ask me a lot why I'm an RA. I've been trying to figure out exactly why myself lately. I'm not gunna lie. There are times when I wake up in the middle of the night to my phone ringing thinking, "Why the heck do I do this to myself." Or when all my friends are hanging out on the weekend and I can't go cause I'm on duty. Or when friends ask me why I've not been around lately...that's the worst one. Cause as much as I care about my friends, my job has to come first. I feel like I'm letting them down on those nights. Those night suck. Those night make me want to kiss Reslife goodbye and never look back.

But if it was all bad no one would do it. I thought for a long time that the biggest reason was for the money incentive, but when I think about coming back next year even, it's not the money I'm thinking about.

I think about the residents that come in my room crying just to talk about a crappy test or a broken heart. I think about the residents that come running into my room, slam the door, lock it, and tell me not to open it for their roommate for anything. I think about the residents who get stuck on the top bunk and laugh their way down after 15 minutes. I think about the residents that dress up as Disney Princesses with me. I think about the residents that are finding out who they are gunna be, who are exploring college, who stay up late playing video games, who dress up as anima characters and take pictures.

That's really why I do my job. I can ramble on about the incentives and the money, but I don't much care about that stuff. It's the girls that I get to see break out of their shells. It's so much fun!

And so I sit in my room and wait for the floor to fill back up and another semester of adventures to start. They'll be those 5 am calls that I hate and the nights I can't head over to Potter's for some coffee....but they'll be those Disney Scene-It nights too. Exciting! Bring it on Spring semester!


Landlocked Blues - Bright Eyes

photo curtosey of flickr user Nick Scribner

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Life's like a jump rope

I want you to take yourself back a minute to the movie "Step Brothers." They are running around, they've just become best friends and they run into their parents room (keep in mine they are close to 40 years of age) and ask if they can make bunk beds. Their argument? "We'll have so much more room for activities!"

I love this. I love activities. And that's what today is. A day dedicated to activities. I came over to one of my best friends houses today to celebrate the second holiday of the year on my calender, Chocolate Covered Cherry Day. I made a resolution this year to find crazy holidays, put them on my calender, and celebrate every one. I have at least 5 little known holidays to celebrate every month.

I came over expecting to just make chocolate covered cherries. I found today to shape up a little differently. I walked in the door to see my best friend decked out in a football jersey for the game later today. Our team is not good, but that does not stop her faith.

We made our way into the kitchen and started talking. Even if we only spend about 5 hours apart we always have new things to tell each other, plans, ideas, and funny stories. We started talking and were remembering Christmas this year, or CHEMas...girl christmas. It was amazing, but we are already thinking of ideas for next year to top this year. We've decided to do joint gifts...I can't tell you what they are on the off chance that one of the other members of CHEM read this blog...but let me tell you...they are good. Like, really good.

And so we decided that after we made chocolate covered cherries, we would start work on the CHEMas presents. Yes, we know that Christmas is literally a year away, but that doesn't really stop us...we're kinda weird that way.

And then we started talking about Em getting married. And we started getting ideas for wedding presents. And we're gunna work on that.

And then we decided we wanted to see The Princess and the Frog, complete with Disney toys provided by me. So we are gunna do that.

And then we decided I needed to put together an outfit for RA prom. So we're gunna work on that....

I looked over at her and said in my best little kid voice, "We have so many activities!"

She laughed. I did to. But at the same's completely normal for us. To make chocolate covered cherries and begin work on joint Christmas present in January. I like having friends that embrace my crazy, weird desire to surprise people, including myself.

I'm obsessed with this new song, life's like a jump rope. "Up, down, up down, up down, up down,'s like a jump rope." It's the perfect description. I'm up, I'm down...but I always have my crazy friends to laugh with and plan activities with on the up days and to cry and watch chick flicks and eat chocolate covered cherries with on the down days.'s a jump rope. And I wouldn't have it any other way.

And there is something to be learned from Step Brothers. Activities should never be overrated :-)

Jump Rope - Blue October

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