Archive for February, 2010|Monthly archive page

merritt – character sketch

In thoughts on people on February 19, 2010 at 3:51 am

merritt is one of those rare individuals who decides to live the life she dreams of despite her surroundings.

the thing i love about her most is that, though she lives a life of perceived fabulosity, i have never seen her meet a person she couldn’t connect with.  she has the extraordinary gift of meeting people where they are, and can almost always say “i understand.”  she gives people second, third, and fourth chances.  it is as if she chooses rose-colored (brand name) glasses to see people, opportunities, and life.  the uneven sidewalk at the university is her runway, her mere mortal friends are her posh celebrity posse.  what’s best in that regard is that her infectious and inspiring positivity is not limited to herself or her own life.  she spreads it on those around her, like a seasoned artist with a paint-covered brush in hand.

her well manicured blonde bob hits right at her chin at an angle, accenting the smile that cuts wide across her face, flashing big white rows of perfect teeth.  she is well built and proportioned, keeping a healthy physique through reasonable exercise and diet (which, in the fashion & styling business of today is a feat deserving a standing ovation!)  she’ll down a burger and a beer, or she’ll sit and eat a fruit salad and green tea.  she will take a day to veg and take the next to hit her to-do list with the reckless abandon of a true new york CEO.  merritt, though she pendulums back and forth between the extremes, eventually strikes this phenomenal balance, all while drawing people to herself with light and love and inspiration.

she talks the talk of a manhattan native, an LA socialite, a parisian stylist, and a well-educated celebrity heiress.  but it’s not intimidating or nauseating, it’s inviting, so warm as if you could jump in with her and pretend you have a thousand dollar bill burning a hole in your pocket.  merritt is the barbie i always wished would come to real life so we could talk make-up and outfits and boys.  she was made for big things and the most beautiful part is she believes it about herself.



In thoughts on God on February 16, 2010 at 5:27 pm

“a grand opportunity for repentance and spiritual renewal within the framework of confession and absolution”

“Ash Wednesday, like the season of Lent, is never mentioned in Scripture and is not commanded by God. Christians are free to either observe or not observe it. It also should be obvious that the imposition of ashes, like similar external practices, are meaningless, even hypocritical, unless there is a corresponding inner repentance and change of behavior. This is made clear in Isaiah 58:5-7 when God says,

    Is this the kind of fast I have chosen, only a day for a man to humble himself? Is it only for bowing one’s head like a reed and for lying on sackcloth and ashes ? Is that what you call a fast, a day acceptable to the LORD? 6 “Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? 7 Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter– when you see the naked, to clothe him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?

With this in mind, however, the rite of ashes on Ash Wednesday is heartily recommended to the Christian as a grand opportunity for repentance and spiritual renewal within the framework of confession and absolution. A blessed Ash Wednesday observance to all.”


I am looking forward to 46 days of intentionality in prayer, reading scripture, and fellowship in the Lord’s presence. What a perfect time this has come about.  I want this!  I want to have a season to ask for cleansing and repentance, not to make myself look or feel better or stronger.  I want more of Christ and to make much of Him, and I know there are doubts and tangles in me getting in the way of that.  And I’m excited to do this with a church body I feel connected to!  For those of you practicing and observing Lent this year, know that the Lord will not withhold Himself from you, He will not withhold his love or forgiveness or presence!  Let’s ask him for more.

college in review: part time jobs

In thoughts on things on February 13, 2010 at 6:00 pm


i’ve had a lot of jobs.  i answered the phone at school and was a secretary in an office.  my favorite part about that was having unlimited access to all of the office supplies.  they had this huge printer that even stapled your papers if you wanted it to.  i worked there at night and became friends with some of the janitorial staff, and helped them look for other jobs on the internet.  one of them reminded me of my mom, so of course i helped her look for another job.

after that i worked at a boutique on king street, it was entirely too romantic.  there were flowers and candles and beautiful clothes everywhere, and i swept the porch every morning and got to pick the XM radio station when my boss wasn’t there.  i even knew the mailman’s name and he would ask me if i had been singing my own music, and i’d say, “no, not yet,” and he’d linger too long, but i didn’t mind that much.  i watched it rain, i watched it snow, i passed out candy to the trick-or-treaters, and wore sundresses before my classes in the summer.

we didn’t do well with the recession so i found a job at a bookstore.  i worked for this old man, leonard, and we listened to 40’s music all day.  men would come in and out, buying cigars and used books and the sunday Times.  i felt like one of the boys, just a boy in skirts and dresses… one of the boys who everyone wanted to stick around and dust the books and magazines.  i was content to do so, for a while at least.

leonard didn’t do well in the recession either, so i got a job at chick-fil-a.  i sold a lot of chicken sandwiches and said, “my pleasure.”  sometimes i cleaned the toilets or sanitized the playplace when a kid peed.  the best one was the pee-slide. how do you pee when you’re sliding down a slide?  serving had to become my pleasure so that people would actually believe me when i said it.  that was an invaluable lesson to learn.

right now i pick up kids from school and babysit.  i just gave my two-weeks notice in, because i want to find a more stable job.  kids get sick a lot and school cancels days for snow or the swine flu.  if i saw john the mailman i’d tell him that, yes, i’ve been singing more of my own music lately.

but all that stuff is stuff i did, it doesn’t tell you much about me. i grew up a lot with all of my jobs. but i’m learning a lot about doing and how what you do doesn’t matter.  christ loves.  when we get that, we love in a way that is opposite of the world, like him.  when people see that in us they see him in us. this is what matters.

on clouds – from the sky between bangkok & chiang mai

In thoughts on God on February 9, 2010 at 12:59 pm

if we opened our eyes and our hearts, and let those things tell our mind what is, we’d know there is God.

i wish i could explain seeing the clouds from this side.  i’m pretty sure if tolkien or lewis or the apostle paul could have seen this, they would’ve written about it.  when you go above the clouds, it’s as if you just emerged out of years hidden under the depths of the sea.  it looks and feels like that so much.

out as far as the eye can see, into the horizon, is a sea of white cloud spotted with tips of rocky icebergs and white mountains made of cloud.  it looks like a different planet, a different world.

i imagined what it would be like to set out instruments on one of the icebergs or mountins and play music into the quiet, endless sea of white and gray and blue.  is there any noise up here other than the sounds of airplanes and thunder?  i imagine the angels of the Lord enjoying this place,  giving glory to the handiwork of the Lord.

He is so creative.  there are things we could never know about, things in our own oceans and things billions of lightyears away, things in our own bodies even, we could never know about or see and they’re there just for His glory.

i imagine them, the angels that is, flying here and there singing “Holy Holy Holy is the Lord God Almighty!” maybe you could even hear them up here.  but we can’t in our airplanes or even if we parachute out of them.

things are so noisy below the clouds.  we have to choose to listen to what’s going on beyond them.

science takes the fun out of everything.  it’s hard to look at this and not see molecules and cumulonimbus and ozone.  if you just take those eyes off and LOOK, it is a miracle, a mystery, the things only seen in dreams and talked about in grand tales and epic stories.  and it’s real, it’s here outside my window and i see it with my own eyes.  i see the curve of the world up here.  below the clouds, i can see green and brown mountain tops, looking like crumpled up paper grocery bags.  the clouds are casting shadows on them, spotting the land.  this screams Creator, but we don’t always listen.  i want to listen and believe and wonder like a little child.  Jesus, it’s beautiful.  thank you for creating this and letting me see it, letting me see a different perspective on my own world.

after i wrote this, i saw these phrases in Psalm 29-

Above the clouds, the Lord sits enthroned.  The voice of the LORD is over the waters.  The God of Glory thunders.