Living Sacrifice

Wednesday, March 30, 2005

Wow, God is rocking my world in so many ways. He is speaking to me about truth, about my life and my body, and He is giving me hope through other people and through His word, and it's completely awesome. My world is being shattered and yet being beautified at the same time. I hope to be able to go into more detail at a later time, because I'm still processing. But I am learning that God is a wall-shattering God, breaking down strongholds and false beliefs to insert the beauty and yet boldness of His truth. He really does desire us to be free creatures in His creation. He desires to see me walk in freedom. And He is restoring that hope for me. And in that restoration, I know that I can be a light in a dark shine in places where light may have never touched before. God will use me if I allow it....if I am obedient. He has great things in store. He has love.

Monday, March 28, 2005

God is in the simple pleasures of life. Today, I was rubbing Doris down with lotion (Vir’s mom for whom I do home care), and we were listening to the latest Jars CD, which has Jars re-doing a bunch of old hymns. And as she was partially falling asleep, she was singing/mumbling the words to “I’ll Fly Away” as it played in the other room, and for some reason, it was just so sweet. It was one of those moments where you realize life is more than just work, eating, sleeping, etc. There’s something more...and it’s really hard to explain. But it’s beautiful, and it’s God, and I love it.

“Some glad morning when this life is o'er,
I'll fly away.
To a home on God's celestial shore,
I'll fly away.

I'll fly away, O Glory,
I'll fly away.
When I die, Hallelujah, bye and bye,
I'll fly away.

When the shadows of this life have flown,
I'll fly away.
Like a bird thrown, driven by the storm,
I'll fly away.

I'll fly away, O Glory,
I'll fly away.
When I die, Hallelujah, bye and bye,
I'll fly away.

Just a few more weary days and then,
I'll fly away.
To a land where joy shall never end,
I'll fly away.

I'll fly away, O Glory,
I'll fly away.
When I die, Hallelujah, bye and bye,
I'll fly away. “

Sunday, March 27, 2005

So, today is Easter.

For the first time in 22 years, I am not with my entire family. I was really really disappointed at first, but it's starting to sink in now, and it's not so bad. I got to thinking, "You know, I've been blessed to spend the last 22 years at home with my family on Easter. Most people don't even get that." I should be celebrating my family instead of being sad about not carrying on a tradition. I do fear, though, that since it has been let go this year, this will become the norm, because as we get older, it gets harder and harder to get the family together. *sigh* I guess I have to come to terms with that reality and trust that my family knows I love them regardless of whether I am with them or not.

On other notes, I'm really really excited that Jesus died for me, and that he rose again! I have unlimited second chances. I'm a piece of poo, but God makes me into something. Let everything in my life be to His glory and the edification of His name, because He deserves my life and my everything. Praise be to You, Lord! I have a loving God, who listens to my every cry, hears my every laugh, sees my every deed and watches my every step. He knows my most inner parts. He knows my future, my past, every deep nook and cranny of my soul. And even with all the bad stuff that's in there, He loves me. Enough that He would die for me. DIE for me. And then rise again. Because He's awesome, and amazing, and mysterious, and wonderful, and loving, and all the things I wish I was but can't seem to be! He is my Saviour and friend, my lover, the redeemer of my soul. WOW, I have an amazing God! :) So do you. :)

Friday, March 25, 2005

The past week, I have felt very depressed. It's funny how people have noticed.....I'm usually good at hiding it, but I've had at least 3 people mention something this week. I'm not really sure what's wrong. I guess a combination of many things. Not having a sense of purpose and direction in my life, feeling left out and disconnected, feeling luggish and overweight...ugly. I don't really feel connected to my church family anymore, and I don't really feel connected to the people on Friday nites. In fact, people are in the other room right now, praying and stuff. I came in here because I just don't get it. I'm not connected with God. I feel so alone and so out there. I was hoping to see a friend tonight who didn't come as well, which I didn't really expect to come, but it's still disappointing. I want to know God on a deeper level....but it's not coming. I have too many freaking issues that get in the way. Sometimes I just feel like I want to run away....go somewhere where no one knows me and just hide. Or die. Or something. I don't know.

In reality, I really just want things to be right in my life. To stop stop be free from this constant self-pity and sorrow. But I never have enough faith that God will do something. I never believe enough for Him to work. So much hate....and rage....toward myself. I wonder if I will ever accept myself, accept God, accept life. So much loving to be done, and I'm missing out because I can't love myself. What's wrong with me??? Will this ever go away? Will I always be stuck in this place? God, help me, before this disease kills me.

Now is the moment for me,
I’ve had my time to sit,
I took my hot chocolate
And my thoughts,
And your words,
And some music.
I read, and I read.
I laughed, and I cried.
Your words are able to touch
Something deep inside.
I begin to question
Why so much hate,
Why this self-destruction,
Why I see things differently
Than those around.
I am influenced by the enemy
I remain where he wants me.
But then actions and words
From you…
They shatter my truths,
Which are really lies.
And instead of myself
The enemy I begin to despise
Still caught in this depression
In this sadness
Still in this fear.
But your words cut deep
You’re lack of fear
To be real with me
You’re courage and boldness
To speak your mind
All this, in and of itself
Is beautiful to me.
Though there are no notes
It is music to my ears.
I don’t know what life has for me
I don’t know what angels will come,
What God has in store.
But for now, I know I am loved.
God speaks through your poems
To tell me how He sees me.
He uses your words
To sing sweet songs to me.
I am loved, I am adored,
I am accepted. I am ok.

Thank you, for your beauty.
For you are beautiful.

This was read at last year's easter service. I figured it was well-fit for this weekend to post as a blog.

Seven Stanzas at Easter by John Updike

Make no mistake: if He rose at all
it was as His body;
if the cells' dissolution did not reverse, the molecules
reknit, the amino acids rekindle,
the Church will fall.
It was not as the flowers,
each soft Spring recurrent;
it was not as His Spirit in the mouths and fuddled
eyes of the eleven apostles;
it was as His Flesh: ours.

The same hinged thumbs and toes,
the same valved heart
that — pierced — died, withered, paused, and then
regathered out of enduring Might
new strength to enclose.

Let us not mock God with metaphor,
analogy, sidestepping transcendence;
making of the event a parable, a sign painted in the
faded credulity of earlier ages:
let us walk through the door.

The stone is rolled back, not papier-mache,
not a stone in a story,
but the vast rock of materiality that in the slow
grinding of time will eclipse for each of us
the wide light of day.

And if we will have an angel at the tomb,
make it a real angel,
weighty with Max Planck's quanta, vivid with hair,
opaque in the dawn light, robed in real linen
spun on a definite loom.

Let us not seek to make it less monstrous,
for our own convenience, our own sense of beauty,
lest, awakened in one unthinkable hour, we are
embarrassed by the miracle,
and crushed by remonstrance.

Thursday, March 24, 2005

Sex is in my face everyday. Literally. If not in class, then in advertisements, movies, tv shows, student conversations. Everywhere I turn, SEX. I went into Skippers today and watched a guy practically glued to a tv as "babes" in bathing suits danced all over the screen. You know, at lot of times I get mad about stuff like this, but today, God gave me a different perspective. I was sad. I was sad that those girls dancing around on the screen felt that was all they were worth. I was sad that men are taught to see women as "eye candy" objects and nothing more. I was sad that society lets this go on. I was sad by the general spirit and mentality of people as pertaining to bodies and sex. The girls like that thrive off of sexual attention, attention to their bodies, and therefore do not grow to love themselves for who they are. They believe their self-worth comes from their outward physical "beauty." Granted, I am tainted in this area, because I am no longer the skinny, "beautiful" girl that I once was. I would have fit right in at one time to the flaunting of my body in a bikini because I had that kind of body. And I don't anymore. So, you could say my argument comes from envy or jealousy of girls who are much more beautiful than me. But I don't know about that. I feel that even if I was thin, I couldn't expose my body the way many girls do. I feel like that would be losing respect for myself and the body God gave me, as well as causing temptation for men to fall.

I am satisfied with my feelings today. I hope that God is taking me to a new place of compassion instead of anger against the world for the way they view women's bodies. Much of this superficiality and attention to the external comes from within the church as well, which is sad, but I have to trust that God can work in and through His people, and continue to work in my heart, to overcome the temptation to judge someone specifically by their physical attractiveness. And, in turn, maybe I can stop judging my own self that way, too, so God has room to start healing me. I can only hope......

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Those beautiful tears
No fear to show yourself
Be real, you feel
Not bound by the world
So free to expose
Broken are your walls
Fallen to the ground
Crumbled to stand strong

Oh, you radiant tear shedder
Never more lovely than now
May the world never take away
The beauty you give

Each one worth a fortune
Never lost, each counted
The red and the white
Make you vulnerable
But you're not afraid
Of the social constraints
So strong in your weakness
You are so beautiful

Oh, you radiant tear shedder
Never more lovely than now
May the world never take away
The beauty you give

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

My friend,
People come and go
My friend,
Now is your time
My friend,
This you will remain
My friend,
I love you just the same

Please know you can call
You can cry, you can laugh
But most of all remember
To call on Your God, to call on your God.
He is with You, He is with You
He is with You
more than
I will ever be.

Oh Lord, watch over my brother
Oh Lord, protect him from the hands of satan
Oh Lord, shine Your love into his life
Oh Lord, direct his path and bring him light.

Saturday, March 19, 2005

Need I say more?

*grin* My tribute to my friend who is currently waiting in Chicago to fly into Burlington, Vermont. I love you, Joe. :) *hug*

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Yes, I made it to Oklahoma! The trip was wonderful....many hours in the car of thinking, crying, singing, screaming, relaxing, tensing, gazing, almost sleeping (oops! Pretend I didn't say that), praying, and contemplating. Did I ever mention that I love road trips? :) It was a little more difficult getting here based on the fact that I had had no sleep, so I had to stop every hour and a half or so to just get out of the car to wake myself up a bit. But besides that, it was great. I did get to stop by the House of Prayer in Kansas City, though I only stayed for a little while. I don't think I came at a great time, giving that I arrived only a couple hours before the time when I think they had a more structured service....since it was Sunday. So, I felt a little out of place as the peeps in dress clothes started to roll I decided to stroll out. The time I did spend there before most of the people arrived, though, was very nice....a peaceful time....and I was able to read and pray a bit before taking a nap on the floor between two rows of chairs as the most beautiful worship songs were sung by female vocalists on the piano. :) I also bought a House of Prayer CD for the rest of the road trip. So, it was time well-spent. I would like to have a chance to go back again sometime, though, when I can stay for a longer period of time on a day other than Sunday.
So, now I'm in Oklahoma with Micah. It's been awesome hanging out with him. I think I brought the Ohio weather down here with me, but it's been nice enough. We've visited a couple museums in the area, rented a couple movies, made meals and eaten out, and just plain hung out talking and playing random music. It's been a lot of fun, and I've had time to relax and enjoy myself as well as the company of a noble friend. :)
Tomorrow we will be adventuring to a house church in northwestern Oklahoma City (yes, a house church!), so I'm really really excited to check out how God is working down here. The lady I talked to on the phone was super nice, and the way she described their house church sounded very very similar to Veritas. It's cool how the Spirit moves on the hearts of the people in similar ways. Seriously, I'm really excited to go tomorrow nite. I found out about this house church by searching the web. It sounds like there are many little house churches connected to one big church in Oklahoma City called Bridgeway Church. I will be sure to blog about it afterward. :) Then, after attending church, Micah and I will be heading to Musashi's for authentic Japanese cook-in-your-face food. I'm almost as excited about that as house church. lol Just kidding. Well, kind of. ;)
Anyway, if you read this and are inclined to pray, pray for divine connections for Micah and I tomorrow at house church. Let it be God's will and not mine, but I really desire to see Micah get connected to other believers down here where he will feel welcome and loved as part of a community. I know God desires this for all of His people, so He no doubt desires it for Micah as well. If this doesn't work out, then it wasn't His will and it will still be a sweet experience. But I do hope and pray that it is more than just an encounter with other believers. :)
*hug* For all Ohioans reading back home, I am really missing you all! I'm having a great time, but I'll be ready to return and see my friends again. Love and peace to all of you.

Friday, March 11, 2005

I'm kind of mad at myself for deciding to stop blogging for a while. It seems that as soon as I stopped, so many cool things started happening, and now there's been so many I can't remember or type them all! *sigh* Oh well. I should be happy about that. :)

Anyway, just wanted to let the blog world know that I will be back in action just in time for SPRING BREAK so everyone can hear about my adventures to hopefully the House of Prayer and Oklahoma. I'm really excited. YAY!

And by the way, Victor, Eric, and I are starting a band. yep. lol

And my new word is rad, so have a rad break!