Friday, July 23, 2010


You may be thinking, "man, she writes a lot." You my friend would be correct. Joel is in the states right now so I am home alone with my thoughts (and they are many). It helps to write it out. You are the recipients. :) The beauty of a blog though is that you, the reader, have a choice to read it or not. So there you go.

I was watching Julie & Julia the other day. Included in the "special features" part was an interview where the actors talked about Julie Child being someone who loved food. They said that she revolutionized the way Americans thought about it. Let me explain. She said that it is okay to put gorgeous, delicious, and decadent food on the table every evening for your family. By this you show them a simple act of love to them. This is so true in my life! I LOVE food. I love making it, researching it, and of course, enjoying it with loved ones. I've never thought of preparing meals as an act of love, but that is exactly what it is. All of the thought and effort that goes into a meal is so great. When the meal is shared there is a comfort and joy that is spread around the table. People feel fat and happy which is a wonderful thing. Now I feel like I have an excuse to make rich yummy food for my husband and friends. Its one of the ways I say, "I love you."

Strange Encounters

I was sitting down by the beach under the shade of a palm tree just reading and taking in the sights as I love to do. Joel calls is people watching and "creepy," but whatever. Anyway there I was when this elderly Japanese woman came slowly walking by me. She was short and a bit pudgy. She was wearing a white tennis hat (click here for a pic) and carrying a large plastic bag full of aluminum cans. She was a happy woman. Out of no where she started smiling at me and speaking to me in Japanese. She then sat across the way from me. We proceeded to have a conversation. You know how it is trying to communicate with someone when you don't speak their language, there is a lot of nodding your head, pretending like you know what they're talking about, and a lot of gesturing. Through our conversation I found out that she is 81 years old. Let me just say right now that she looked maybe 65. She has 4 grown boys, her husband is dead, and there is no bus to her home in Chatan so she walks. She found out how old I was, that I was married, and have no babies. She just yabbered on while I smiled and nodded at her. She pointed at her cans, said something, and did some other gestures to which I think she said that she has collected enough cans for 3 drinks of sake. This amazed me 1, because she's so old and still getting around, rather slowly, but still. And 2, well, she drinks quite a bit. She also asked me if I was going to be there tomorrow too. I think she enjoyed our strange conversation. I did too. Days like today make me wish I spoke Japanese.

Thursday, July 22, 2010

Being Known

I just want to say that I love the blog world. I love reading other people's thoughts and opinions from the safe comfort of my home...I mean, today I've read 4 people's blogs, people I don't know or have never met. And though I've never met them, and probably never will, I find myself agreeing with their heart, crying at the aches and pains they feel in their life, and rejoicing with them in their joy. The amazing creation of technology; you can know someone without really knowing them. In the same vain, its kind of a sad thing. You can go through life feeling really close to people, but really know no one and be known by no one. Sad. To quote a friend, its "relational masturbation," (thank you Aaron), a quick fix to our need for community, love, and friendship. So sad. The reality is that most of us are too afraid take the step of friendship into real vulnerability, where we know someone and ARE TRULY KNOWN. That's the real kicker, the being known part. We have no problem knowing others, but when we are asked to divulge information about the secrets of our heart, we shirk back in fear. I have no answer to this problem. I, along with everyone out there, have issues with the being known part of a friendship. I ask the Lord to help me, step by step, in each conversation, to not shy back from who he's made me to be, even if that means heartache and pain for me in the end. I want to be someone who is known by people and by the Lord.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Legalism II

Today was supposed to be a day filled with beach, sun, books, and nothingness, but the rain came. So I am inside, still in my pjs at 11am listening to sermons and reading the Bible...still good, but not the beach or sunshine.

As I said in the previous post, I am reading through Galatians. It has been a wonderful, challenging read. I find that I rely way too heavily on my own perceived goodness. I would highly suggest listening to this Mark Driscoll sermon on Galatians 3: 1-14. <-Click on Gal. 3 for the link. Its pretty great, although its an hour fourteen minutes. I would explain it, but that would take too much time. So, let me sum up. All we need is Jesus. It doesn't work when we say that we are saved by grace through faith in Jesus, but we need to clean ourselves up by our own strength, merit, traditions, or morals. This is a Christianity based on works. Jesus died on the cross becoming a curse for us. He rose again, and is seated at the right hand of God. It is finished. We only need to trust Jesus is who he says he is and that what he has done was for us so that we can be reconciled to God.

Habakkuk 2:4, "...but the righteous shall live by his faith." Its not by morals, some movement, culture, a manual, our conscience, or self-discovery that we are made righteous. Its by a faith that continues to trust in God and cling to God's promises in Jesus, even through the darkest days.


I started reading through Galatians the other day and got stuck in chapter 2. Most people probably get stuck at chapter 3 when Paul talks about works/faith, but not me...

The reason that I got stopped in chapter 2 was because I read verse 12 talking about Peter, "for before certain men came from James, he was eating with the Gentiles; but when they came he drew back and separated himself, fearing, the circumcision party. And the rest of the Jews acted hypocritically along with him..." He "drew back and separated himself." This idea that Peter is better than others because he doesn't upset the Jewish custom and culture threatens the gospel of justification by faith alone through Christ alone because it implies that all Christians had to live like Jews, specifically in their dietary habits, in order to be justified before God.

Chapter 2 deals with the gospel and culture. Let me explain a bit more using some words from your friend and mine, Mark Driscoll. There are 3 groups out there, one says as Christians we should be completely separate from the world, another says, we should meld with the world/popular culture, the last is somewhere in the middle. The deal is that the gospel should be our primary concern. It exists in different cultures around the world(which is GREAT and BEAUTIFUL). The Church(big C) gathers in community with thousands of cultural differences to celebrate our freedom in Christ. Sometimes we forget that the gospel comes first and we put culture above it, creating hierarchies of Christians (ie, we pray 5 times a day at 6am, we wear cool clothes and play our worship really loudly.) This shouldn't be. Therefore, we must always come back to the gospel as culture changes around us.

In ch. 2 we see that this whole ordeal happens because the people are putting culture (circumcision) above the gospel. They say, you can't be Christian if you aren't circumcised. This is wrong. They are legalists who bring culture as high as the gospel and doubt Christians who haven't participated in the ways of their culture. The thing is though, that Jesus fulfilled the law, so we don't need more rules and regulations, we need Jesus.

I find myself and others putting culture first before the gospel of Jesus. We say, "this worship is boring", or "this preaching is a bit dry." There are also those who just think they are better than others because they know more Bible, or can talk the spiritual talk better. We fail to even think about whether or not the gospel of Jesus is going forth and if lives are being changed by it. We add the prerequisite of culture to the gospel, "if your faith doesn't look like mine, you are not a christian or you are not as good of a christian as me." The fact of the matter is, that one is not better than the other. We are ALL saved by grace through faith in Jesus. He saved sinners, messed up and crazy people. ALL of us have sinned and fall short of His glory, yet through Jesus and HIS redemptive work on the cross we are reconciled to God...AMAZING and BEAUTIFUL!

Galatians 2: 19,"For through the law I died to the law, so that I might live to God. I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, for if righteousness were through the law, then Christ died for no purpose."

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Forever Reign

Ever since I heard this song on Sunday its been stuck in my head. I just can't seem to stop thinking about it and singing it. The words ring true in my heart and through all of life's adventures. Running to the arms of the Father there is peace, goodness, joy, and light. He is more than we need and everything we need. And the best part is that he is here. Its so amazing! Here are the words:

Forever Reign

You are good, You are good
When there's nothing good in me
You are love, You are love
On display for all to see
You are light, You are light
When the darkness closes in
You are hope, You are hope
You have covered all my sin

You are peace, You are peace
When my fear is crippling
You are true, You are true
Even in my wandering
You are joy, You are joy
You're the reason that I sing
You are life, You are life,
In You death has lost it's sting

Oh, I’m running to your arms,
I’m running to arms
The riches of your love
Will always be enough
Nothing compares to Your embrace
Light of the world forever reign

You are more, You are more
Than my words will ever say
You are Lord, You are Lord
All creation will proclaim
You are here, You are here
In your presence I'm made whole
You are God, You are God
Of all else I'm letting go

Oh, I’m running to your arms
I’m running to arms
The riches of your love
Will always be enough
Nothing compares to Your embrace
Light of the world forever reign

My heart will sing
no other name
Jesus, Jesus

Oh, I’m running to your arms
I’m running to arms
The riches of your love
Will always be enough
Nothing compares to Your embrace
Light of the world forever reign

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Have No Fear Friends

I just thought I'd let all of you "followers" know that its still me. I thought it was about time to revamp my page to something different. Blogging these days is great fun! Anyway. Please keep reading. Love and miss you all!!!

To the sisters

This is a poem that I heard while watching, "In Her Shoes." I know that this is normally a poem about lovers, but I absolutely love it in the movie because it's one sister telling this to the other.

i carry your heart with me

i carry your heart with me (i carry it in my heart)

i am never without it (anywhere i go you go, my dear;

and whatever is done by only me is your doing, my darling)

i fear no fate (for you are my fate, my sweet)

i want no world (for beautiful you are my world, my true)

here is the deepest secret nobody knows

(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud and the sky of the sky of a tree called life; which grows higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)

and this is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart

i carry your heart (i carry it in my heart)

-E.E. Cummings