Wednesday, March 31, 2010

**100th Post!!**

For my 100th post I was trying to think of something really cool to say. But all I could think of is one of my new favorite verses:

"He has shown you, o man, what is good and what the Lord requires of you: but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God." Micah 6:8

There's a lot of things I love about this verse. I love the three main things highlighted:

  • justice
  • mercy
  • humility
I think it's pretty obvious that I love justice. In my life there have been a few things I'm passionate about, one of them is teens pursuing Jesus, one of them is justice. I hate injustice on a global scale, but I also hate it on a local scale. My career decision makes sense then, yes? I think one of the things that appeals most about our great God is that he is just. Granted that means some people I love who don't know the saving grace of Jesus will go to hell. But the fact that God is perfectly just makes me love him so much.

The concept of mercy is so beautiful. " mer·cy n. 1 a : compassion or forbearance shown especially to an offender or to one subject to one's power; also : lenient or compassionate treatment" First of all, yes this is what Jesus showed us. But second, this is an area I think Jesus is growing in my life. To choose to look past wrongs or pain and show kindness to someone is a very high and hard calling. Another definition of mercy is showing compassion toward the poor or helpless. I think that's easier for me just because it doesn't involve me swallowing my feelings or hurt. And it gets back to justice.

Humility is one area in which I have no problem announcing my inadequacy to the world. I'm an actor. I'm used to everything being about me. I love attention. I love being right all the time. I love pointing out where people go wrong. I love talking about other people's problems and complaining about them. I really suck at humility. The funny thing about it is that the moment you think "hey! I'm getting better at humility!" that's just pride all over again. Alas this is an area I will fight with for the rest of my life.

So do what is good and what the Lord requires of you. Do justly. Love mercy. Walk humbly with God.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

A broken mess, just scattered pieces of who I am

Disappointments show our true colors. Yes? I mean, everyone's had their share.

Today, my day started off with my brother waking me up by pounding on the piano. Something I've asked him many times not to do. I've been waiting for 2 e-mails all day and only one of them came. Also, my mom informed me that the one class I was really looking forward to all quarter (Advanced Acting: Greek scene study) was going to have some "objectionable content" in it and that they wouldn't pay for it. i.e. I can't take it anymore. Then, I had the Explorers meeting tonight. The one where I was potentially going to officially become part of the group. I got there, waited fr 15 minutes and eventually figured out it got cancelled. But I was never told. So with two hours to burn, I set up a last-minute Skype date with a friend I haven't talked to in a while. As I'm flipping open my computer, she texts me and tells me her plans changed and she has to cancel.

Yeah, I'm a bit bummed right now. It's like nothing could go right today. And of course nobody knew that, so they weren't trying to ruin my day, but it still hurts nonetheless.

So I'm going to sit here, in my empty house and meditate on my morning reading (amazing Psalm...check it out), make myself a cup of coffee, and dance just because I can.

Monday, March 29, 2010

But I NEVER do that.

Last night's sermon on legalism hit home (like Pastor Mark's sermons usually do). But the one last night focused on legalism and anti-legalism. At first, when I hear the term "legalism" I think "I go to Mars Hill. We're the least legalistic church I know." But then I kept listening and realized that legalism is any sort of rule that we add to the Bible. I am praying that Jesus will show me areas where I'm legalistic, because I know there are things that I place importance on, that the Bible doesn't. I just can't think of them right now. One could be not going to church every week, or working on Sunday.

However, God is good, and loving, and gracious, and continues to want to be in relationship with me--even when I add things to the beautiful story He wrote.

Evidences of God's Grace:

  • preliminary results from an audition
  • recognizing growth in my life
  • time to be still before the Lord
  • kids and their wittiness
  • Emily Yeaton, her school friends, and Jill Bakke and late nights doing ridiculous things
  • blogs which make me think

Saturday, March 27, 2010

The Tornado Strikes Again

My mind is like a tornado. I have so many things to think about all the time.

I've been thinking a lot about living my life with integrity. This morning as I was spending time with Jesus, I read this verse:

Oh, guard my soul, and deliver me!
Let me not be put to shame, for I take refuge in you.
May integrity and uprightness preserve me,
for I wait for you.
I think about this especially at work. I complain way more often than I should. But in life in general, I want to be a girl of whom it can be said she was "careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody" (Romans 12:17). I know that I'm human and still have a sin nature, so I struggle with figuring out how to accomplish this. The closest I can figure out now, is that it involves a lot of repentance (which I suck at).

Another thing that came up at cg the other night is how do I spend my time? I was convicted that I waste a lot of time watching TV shows, on Facebook, sleeping....just doing nothing in particular. Every morning I wake up intending to spend time with Jesus. Hoping that this will be the day where I can get everything done that needs to be done. But most mornings I turn on the computer before I flip open the Bible. I'm at one of those phases in life where I've lost the hunger for reading my Bible and spending time with Jesus. Once I'm in it, I always enjoy it, but it's just the starting that's hard. My challenge to myself this week is to get back into that valuable time on my knees in front of the Lord.

Every once in a while, I just like to sit and think about Jesus. Contemplate that he is mighty yet loving. That I screw up in a million ways every day and often don't even bother to ask his forgiveness, but he's still there for me. I can't really even begin to comprehend what omnipotence looks like. I love that in the end, everyone will be brought to justice. And it makes me relieved that I don't have to be perfect to spend eternity with him. (oh yeah, and just thinking about that eternity, man! I'm excited)

With all this stuff swirling around in my cyclone of a brain, I also think about my future. I know that "the mind of a man plans his way, but the Lord directs his steps." (Proverbs 16:9) I've seen that verse play out over and over in my life. I have some friends who have been talking about Biblical Womanhood recently. I know I've fought against this concept for the same reason I fought against Proverbs 31. I know that my fight against being a weak woman is partially what led me to want to work in law enforcement, but I also know that's not the only reason. I love justice. I love seeing people brought to justice. I love the idea of saving lives. I love helping people. I love giving back to my community. But part of me constantly worries if I have it all wrong. I know that (at least at first) my parents fought back against the concept of me being a police officer because I "would be assuming roles meant for men." I worry if this is true. I worry that maybe this isn't what God's calling me to do and that I've been fooling myself. Part of me wants to do my own study of biblical womanhood, but I don't know where to start. My mom has a book about it, but I'm pretty sure every author has an opinion and I know her book leans toward conservative values. I'm all for being a mom and a homemaker, but I don't think that working and being a homemaker are mutually exclusive. I just don't know.

Those are just a few of the things I think about. This whole "life" thing is so complicated.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Time Management

Question: What do I spend my time on/for?

Answer: Not what I should be.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Spring Break

Spring break feels extremely liberating and terrifying at the same time. I know I don't have anything I have to do or anywhere I have to be except for work and cg. I'm afraid I'll waste it. At the same time, I love just sitting here, thinking "oh! I'm sure I have reading to do! Oh wait, nope........probably should get busy fixing lines! Hahaha just kidding."

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Why I love theater

Not much to report today other than I completed 3 finals. Yippee. Tomorrow I have the final I'm actually looking forward to. We get to play around on stage in front of people. I love acting. I really do. There's something fun about the challenge of becoming someone else--physically, emotionally, and verbally. Tomorrow I jump from being an 80+ year old bitter German grandmother with a limp to a 30 year old suicidal alcoholic on a bus to a 20 something who's preparing to marry a pop star. Anyone who's not an actor just can't understand. There isn't any fear when I walk on stage. Sure, I'm a little nervous that I'll forget lines or mess up blocking, but we've rehearsed enough that I know what I need to do to "become" that other person. And yet it's new every time. You can never perform the same exact scene the same exact way more than once. I've also learned to trust my scene partner. My second and fourth scenes are with people who I know have my back that entire scene. I know, it sounds really weird to someone who doesn't DO the theater thing. But you'll just have to trust me on this. When I walk onto the stage with Blaire and Marissa I know that no matter how terribly we mess up, it'll all turn out fine. Or that if we do an amazing job, it'll have been a group effort. In the end, theater is all about taking people out of their everyday lives and transporting them into an imaginary world. I think it's a beautiful thing.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

mini humans

Today I held a human life in my arms and watched it sleep. I love working in the nursery if for no other reason than getting to play with little mini-humans for 2 hours. Whenever I spend time with kids, I can't imagine NOT wanting to be a mom. It would be scary, sure, but how cool to know that you're teaching a kid how to be a member of this society, how to love Jesus, how to live with's a beautiful thing.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Becoming Proverbs 31

Tonight at the women's Bible study I go to, we talked about Proverbs 31 and the woman typified there. I love the beauty of the woman...hard worker, wise, speaks carefully, worry-free, skilled at home work, works outside of the home, prepares for the future, thrifty, considerate, physically strong, emotionally strong, compassionate--the list goes on and on.

Actually, to be totally honest, being a "Proverbs 31 woman" turns me off. I've heard it for so long describing the nice and neat little home maker who knits and makes elaborate meals with her home-grown fruits and veggies. I've never been that kind of girl, and so when I hear we're going to talk about the Proverbs 31 woman, I naturally shy away.

But with the discussion we had tonight, I'm beginning to see that it doesn't mean the stereotype I've come to expect. One thing that I loved that was brought up is that this is just a picture. Some of us have strengths in other areas. That was so encouraging to me.

I see my mom in so many aspects of this verse. I also see it in the lives of many of the women God has put in my life. I see how a Proverbs 31 woman can be a strong woman who still submits to her husband, but can work outside of the home/be honorable (it never says she has to be a stay at home mom) and love Jesus at the same time.

So tonight I'm thankful that Jesus showed up at the Bible study and showed me how wrong I was to shy away from this passage. It is, indeed, a beautiful picture.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Yes, I'm a fighter

I'm a fighter. When I get up in the morning, I fight my urge to skip school. If a friend is slipping away, I'll fight to keep them in my life. Those times when a goal seems impossible, I enjoy the challenge of fighting to make it possible. When I find my relationship with Jesus slacking, I feel an urge to get it back to where it was.

Today I was yelled at by my boss. To be fair, I did deserve to be talked to, but I by no means deserved what I received. I've dealt with some pretty harsh people, but this man takes the cake. It baffles me how he expects to keep his company running when he treats his employees like automatons who must do his bidding. And all of us feel that way. Tonight when I was being yelled at, I had to resist the urge to fight it. That went against every inkling in my body but I did it. I apologized, walked out shaking, and ran to my car where I burst into tears. I didn't stop shaking for almost 2 hours. I'll fight to stay in a job and find the good in it, but there's a point where fighting just isn't right anymore. I think I've reached that limit.

I'm a fighter. I'll fight to get a good job where I can be respected and treated as a human being. Perhaps some day I'll find that job.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

I think I may be "less homeschooled" than my parents. Whoever says Christian kids just rely on their parents' faith......they don't know me.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Finding the Middle Ground

Growing up homeschooled, with good Christian friends, I've always been concerned that I could never actually love people who I don't agree with. It's easy to love the people whose morals match your own, but I know that I tend to be judgmental so I had a hard time seeing past the stuff I didn't agree with and focusing on the person.

But I'm discovering how to move past that. I know a lot of things in theory. But by the grace of God, I can look past what I don't agree with and love the person. I never would have been able to care about people without giving in to their lifestyle if I didn't have my strong Christian friends background, so I'm thankful for that, too. I just marvel at how things come together.

One Happy Family

Sunday, March 14, 2010

This week is brought to you by:

Patrick and Heather Day and the Bellevue College Theater Arts Department--where great things can happen involving poker, skittles, and China.

I will sincerely miss the long days at school followed by amazing shows and then always a fun cap to the night with Patrick and Heather. But all good things must end. And tomorrow my life as a techie will end forever (hopefully).

That's all I have to say as I head into daylight savings time. Tomorrow morning I'm hitting up the early service so I can go strike the set at 1pm. Yippee.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Out of the Closet

Tonight during tech, one of my fellow techies brought out this article from The Stranger (which is know to be a very liberal newspaper) and was bashing Mark Driscoll and talking about how ridiculous the church is. Then, this is what went down:

Me: Why do you say [it's ridiculous]?
Sam: It has like a cult following!
Me: Oh, just wondering cause I go to that church.
Sam: You're kidding.
Me: Nope. Not at all.
Sam: No. No. You're totally lying.
Me: No! You can check my Facebook page...anything! I definitely go there.
Sam: Oh, well I have friends who go there and everything. I just....

A few minutes later, after our teacher, Brian, had read the article, I had a very similar conversation with him, too. And then I set the record straight that I'm 99% sure Mark Driscoll didn't write that article. Brian goes "so does your church repress women, too?" I went, "no way! I definitely wouldn't go there if they did!!!" (side note: can you imagine ME going to a church that represses women!?!?!?)

So I spent the rest of the night with thoughts flying through my head "why did they doubt me so much?" "Am I a really terrible witness--did they think that I'm too bad to be a Christian?" "Have I been a good witness now that they know?" "Will this change everything?" Fortunately it didn't seem to change too much. At least tonight. But I'm thankful that God's been changing my heart and allowing me to admit when I'm wrong and showing me how to love broken people. Because I can say that 6 months ago there would have been more ammo against me. For instance, I'm very very glad that I apologized to Brian for complaining about waiting around during tech. It was a little thing, but I feel so much more liberated from it, and he told me he appreciated the apology. And that was before this whole discovery that I'm "one of those Mars Hill kids".

Now I'm half nervous. It's like any time people find out huge things about you. I know I'll be judged on everything from now on. Good thing there are only 2 nights and a day left!  Now I need to be spending time with Jesus more than ever.

Please pray for me.

Poker Face

Theater kids are good for one thing: laughter.

The best part of the night is when everyone is backstage during the show and we're all laughing so hard, but so quietly, that it's beyond the "not able to breathe" phase. I love Ross, Sam, and Melanie (my fellow techies) and Brian (the almighty teacher) more than I can ever explain. Tonight I learned how to play poker and how to time my laughter with audience's. My fellow techies and I also created a new dance move--"The Brian" and spun that carousel of a set around one more time.

I had some sort of deep way to tie this into my life at one point. Now I'm just super tired and ready to crash. Tomorrow is another "early" morning, another night of tech, and another amazing day in this quarter I am loving so much!!

Evidence of God's grace: I was so concerned that teching would be terrible. That I would be lonely and miserable. But instead of a snobby, annoying group of people, God brought me some amazingly suh-weet peeps who make me excited for call every night! I mean, we're friends on Facebook, so it MUST be official!!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Joy in exhaustion

I don't really have a good reason for it, but I am exhausted. Mentally, physically, emotionally. I'm in the mood to sleep for a week, and it's Monday. God, grant me the strength to make it through this week of tech. In some ways its been nice to not have any responsibility besides school and teching the show. I know I'll miss Brian and the crew once it's over. BUT I miss the income from work, I really miss my cg and church, and it's kind of strange being on campus 12 hours every day.

However, last night I made a mistake (a complaint to the tech manager about how we sat around for 2 hours doing nothing) which I had to remedy today. And I realized that I have no reason to be in a bad mood. On the other hand, I have every reason to be joyful. I am healthy when most of my classmates are sick. I have a shorter drive when many students have long commutes. I have 5 amazing and fun classes and look forward to going to school every day while most students hate school. I have a cg leader (and his wife :-P) who are generous in letting me sleep at their place this week. I have gas in my car. I have a computer that I can use any time of day or night to complete assignments. Over all, I've been pretty blessed, so I am finding joy in exhaustion.

Lindsay, one of my amazing friends from cg, sent this to me on Facebook:

"Do you not know? Have you not heard? The Everlasting God, the Lord, the Creator of the ends of the earth does not become weary or tired. His understanding is inscrutible. He gives strength to the weary, and to him who lacks might He increases power. Though youths grow weary and tired, and vigorous young men (and women) stumble and fall, yet those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength; they will soar on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint." Is 40:28-31

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Broken People

Today I had this realization. (I have these more and more frequently) I have this loving thing all wrong. I know that I am a broken person, but I neglect to realize that other people are, too. So it's kind of ridiculous to wait for people to "fix all their problems" before you delve into the friendship--because they can't and won't.

I think I knew that without putting words on it, but I was far more eager to engage in life with people whose flaws I didn't know very well. Ahhhhh it makes so much sense now! :)

Evidences of God's Grace:
broken people
my scholarships
tech running smoothly (i.e. not giving Brian any reason to yell at me!)

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Take a Moment

Life happens so fast. Busyness, worry, frenzy, it all creeps in before I even notice it's there.

Trust in the Lord and do good
dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness.
Delight yourself in the Lord
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord
trust in him, and he will act.
He will bring forth your righteousness as the light
and your justice as the noon day.
Be still before the Lord
and wait patiently for him.

Psalm 37:3-7a

Take a moment, hold on to the promises in God's Word. BE STILL before the Lord.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Hello Seattle

I am in love with the city. The tall buildings. The lights. The people. The constant activity. The small shops. The noise. The Puget Sound. The hills. The streets. The getting lost. The finding of new places. I dunno, it makes me happy. :)

So today, while I start tech week, and I sit here and look out the computer lab window at the half-blue and half-sunny sky, I will think of the city. And how SOMEDAY I will be back. And not stuck on this little brick campus.

On the other hand, I keep thinking about how content I am to just be where I am in life. I mean, I have friends, I have a job, I have a great church and community group, I enjoy school, and I am excited to start every morning. It's days like this that I'm SURE I'm an optimist. (lol, I'm sitting here in the lab, watching some guy play with the zoom settings on "The Optimists of Vienna Club" website)

Not to be cheesy or cliche, but here are some Evidences of God's Grace:
  • spring coming early
  • a car that works beautifully
  • health
  • growing up
  • the cast of friends who perform daily in the musical that is my life