Saturday, July 11, 2009


My favorite Bible verse is Proverbs 3:5-6. Okay I guess that's technically verses, but still...

I was looking at this passage this morning and it struck me - I probably should have known I had a few trust issues to work through when I used to shy away from verse 5. For years I said my favorite verse was Proverbs 3:6 only, which is "Acknowledge Him and He will direct your path."

I first discovered this verse the summer between my sophomore and junior years of high school. I liked it - basically it said to me that through praying and keeping the line of conversation open with God (so to speak) He would give guidance. Made sense to me - was fairly simple as far as my side of things - and I liked it. However, particularly in the last few years, I've begun to see that you can't really have verse 6 without the preceding verse.

Don't get me wrong, prayer is never a bad thing and I do believe that God will guide us, sometimes gently & sometimes not. But all of that requires trust.

For some time I actually did not like verse 5, which says "Trust in the Lord with all your heart & lean not on your own understanding, but in all your ways..." Everything that came before the word "but" was hard for me to understand...especially the not leaning on your own understanding. I was fine with God's guidance as long as I felt in the loop so to speak. Basically, if I felt like what was going on made sense, I figured it must be right.

The older I get the more I wonder if in fact it is the opposite & the less sense it makes to me, the better off I'll be.

Many things in recent years in my own life have made very little sense, but (at least in hindsight) I can see that the good and the bad were necessary for me to get me to the place I am today. And sure, I made some bad choices along the way, but I'm human - that's what humans do, often when we're doing what makes the most sense.

Just a thought.

Listening to: Bjork - Vespertine

Thursday, July 9, 2009


I've been thinking a bit about gratitude today. One of my favorite organizations, the Joyful Heart Foundation (it's amazing - check it out!), uses each Thursday as "Things We're Thankful for Thursday" on their Facebook site.

As I was sitting here on my couch returning emails earlier, I started thinking about the things I'm thankful for. Family, friends, pets, what you might consider the usual stuff.

Since I moved to California I find that I'll be driving around to the grocery store or school or wherever and my mind will wander to a feeling of just being incredibly grateful for living here in this place. Granted, I have a number of friends and relatives who think I'm insane for liking L.A. as much as I do, but that's okay.

I'm sad to say that this is the first time I've ever felt just grateful to be in one place in this way. It's something that on one hand seems very small, but on the other hand being happy where you live is an amazing thing in itself.

It's a beautiful day here & wherever you are, perhaps it's a good time to think about the things you're thankful for.

Just a thought.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Summer of Love Pt. 1

This summer (so far) has been an interesting journey for me. Mostly spiritual & emotional at this point. And it's all revolved around love in one way or another.

Actually, I can't seem to get away from the topic. When the summer started I wanted to use part of it as a sort of spiritual retreat to (as I told one friend) re-ground myself spiritually. For me this meant getting back into the habit of daily quiet time and prayer...and beginning to do some work on my heart that's needed to be done for a long time.

Allowing God to work on your heart is a wonderful and terribly frightening journey. It involves facing issues like trust and belief and Not to mention going over things from your past you thought were buried years ago. Nope! If you begin to open up your heart for healing when it's been wounded you'll find the mending process to involve its own amount of pain. But, it's worth it.

At the start of summer I began this journey by reading (a.k.a. crying my way through) two books. Captivating by John & Stasi Eldredge and Do You Think I'm Beautiful by Angela Thomas. They are both incredible and worth the reading. (And I'm not sure that everyone cries their way through the way I did - I'm fairly certain the journey is different for each person).

In reading these books, I had some major revelations about myself and things in my life that I thought I'd dealt with quite well. I realized something kind of interesting that I thought of again this morning as I sat in church.

Today was the start of a new sermon series at the church I go to (Oasis Christian Center) called Roommates, Bad Dates, & Great Mates (I told you, I can't escape the subject of love). Anyway, as Pastor Phillip was talking about how God loves us; how God never leaves us; and how in those moments when we think He's disappeared, all we have to do is turn around a look and He's there, I started thinking.

When I was young, and attending a private Lutheran school, we were told similar things - like that Jesus was always with us. My school life was not the happiest thing - that's actually putting it quite mildly - and I can remember in first or second grade sitting at my desk and picturing Jesus being beside me, because if he was beside me, then I wasn't really alone. Somewhere along the path to life that image got lost in the weight of feeling all alone for a long time.

But what actually strikes me about it is I had no problem imagining Jesus always being with me. He was cool, amazing, and very clearly (from what I was learning at school and in church - and later on my own) loving. He epitomized selfless love.

In rather sharp contrast to that, the idea of God, the Father, always being there...that I had a harder time with, but I didn't know how to express that. I just knew from the time I was very young until adulthood whenever someone would try to encourage me to not be sad about my lack of an "earthly" father in my life because I had such a wonderful "heavenly" Father, I would get very angry. It became like an instantaneous button for me. Angry and then sad and kinda hurt.

It wasn't until high school that I began to look at God like a "parent". I had a parent - a wonderful mother - so I could handle that label. And I liked it. And it allowed me to grow closer to Him and to be open to that. But somewhere in the midst of early adulthood, all those issues with "father" came creeping back.

As an adult, I realized what caused such terrible feelings in me when very well-meaning people tried to explain the idea of God as a father to me. The word "father" didn't mean anything to me. And when I say that, I mean it was really and truly devoid of meaning; empty. I had nothing - no expectations - to attach to that word, so I had never learned how to view God as a Father who loves & provides for His children because I had no reality to put with that.

This is something I've been working out over the last couple of years actually. Slowly learning to trust. Learning to let go. Learning to believe I do know His voice (and no I don't mean that in a little voices in your head kind of way / call the men in the white coats kind of way). Some things are very difficult to express in writing actually...

I still have a lot to learn. But I know an awfully large number of girls, like me, who had their hearts broken by either an absent father or one who showed them nothing resembling love. And who, also like me, haven't found peace with letting God father them. It really is a great thing I gotta tell ya. Seriously. But it's a process. A huge process. One that involves letting go of a lot. And trusting. Trusting is a whole other blog. Oy.

Tonight however I have two things I'm pondering. The first is 1 Corinthians 13:1-8 which is "...If I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give all I possess to the poor and surrender my body to the flames, but have not love, I gain nothing. Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails."

The second is (shorter!) Romans 8:38-39 "For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is Christ Jesus our Lord."

Think about that. Love as described in 1 Corinthians is (I believe) described in its perfect state - in the way that God loves us and how we should strive to love one another. It's an amazing, powerful love. And then the idea that nothing can separate us from God's love - His perfect love. Nothing we do. Not the way other people see us or have treated us or made us feel. He loves us. Period.

And granted that is why He shows us both grace and mercy. And within His grace we are called to belong to Him, to be His children. No matter how we got here, or how either of our parents treated us (either - if you have mom issues or dad issues or neither), or how friends, boy/girlfriends, lovers, husbands, wives, exes, family, etc. have made us feel - He loves us just the way we are.

Just a thought.


Currently Listening to the Soundtrack to Memoirs of a Geisha

Saturday, July 4, 2009


Hi, & Happy 4th of July to you!

I wanted to write a quick introduction to explain the type of blog I plan to have here.

This will be a place where I'll write about whatever strikes me that day (and I will tell you upfront it may or may not be a daily thing). I will probably write quite a bit about God and faith, but not so much in a sermon-type way, as that is not my department.

I like to share some of the things I think and the way my faith impacts the rest of my life.

I will also (probably) blog about artsy stuff because the arts in general were & are kind of like my first love. They are something I've run from on occasion (for "practical" purposes) and yet I always find myself back in their midst - and that is a place where I am happy, so much for practical.

This is not supposed to be a place of professional expression, a.k.a. work / journalism. It is a place for the expression of thought. Therefore it is in no way meant to be unbiased. I will happily be expressing my own thoughts, opinions, feelings, etc. here. So feel free to leave me comments with your own thoughts.

I hope that, if you're reading this, you'll enjoy what you find here & check back often.