Thursday, September 24, 2009

The Land of Make Believe

In the land of make believe there is a trolley that takes you in and out of the realm of King Friday. Do you think Friday is his first name? His son is Prince Tuesday. Or is it Prince Tuesday Friday? If it’s make believe why wouldn’t it be Saturday? I guess it doesn’t matter. Of course no trip there would be complete without running into Lady Elaine Fairchild (who may have been a heavy smoker) or Henrietta Pussycat. “Meow. Meow. Meow. Meow.” But I digress.

I wasn’t really a fan of Mr. Rogers show. Perhaps because that trolley never came to take me to my land of make believe. Or maybe it did, but it always brought me back. I was more of a Sesame Street kid. There were fun times there, but also problems on that street. People and puppets had hurts and got dirty.

I’ve been thinking a lot about my life: the past, choices I’ve made, choices I didn’t get to make, friend that have come and gone, and who I am now. I like this person I see smiling in pictures, this person whose eyes have life. But still if I were writing the story it would have been different.

In my land of make believe….
There is a whole family

There is no abuse

My sister and I are best friends who lie on the floor late into the night listening to songs like Lady in Red on the radio and make up flash light choreography to classic music

In my land of make believe…
I don’t hurt those I love

Those I love don’t hurt me

Love and friendship lasts forever

In my land of make believe…
Everyone knows the love of Jesus

My friends are at peace and not in pain

And in my land of make believe…
I am in Africa with orphans

I am a renowned marine mammal researcher who plays and sings to dolphins (and maybe people, too)

I am perfect :)

Then the trolley comes to take me back. The radio is on, it’s time to get up and face the reality of the day. I look in the mirror. Sure I look disheveled, with some sand still in the corner of my eyes. But there is an opportunity for adventure on Sesame Street today!

I would be different if I lived in the land of make believe and maybe not for the better. God knows better than me the reasons… so goodbye King Friday, I’m staying in the realm of King Jesus.

Monday, September 21, 2009

Are you running?

Only one race left this season. It’s the big one… the one I have been preparing for. All the others, they were just the warm ups, the practice tests. Oh… tests. I used to love tests. I was good at tests. Yes, I was the goody-two-shoed teacher’s pet kind of student. I didn’t understand people who just weren’t god at tests. Now I understand. If I go out running on my own, it’s no big thing. As soon as I line up for the start of that race I struggle. I guess I’m not good at race tests.

Life is a lot like that. I want to be able to choose my own races. Run the distances I choose. If I can do things in my own time and way, it’s no big thing. When God sends a test sometimes we just don’t do so well. It seems like the course is too long, or is a constant uphill climb with no aid stations to grab a drink of refreshing water.

Life is a race. Are we going to make it to the finish line?

1 Corinthians 9:24 Do you not know that in a race all the runners run, but only one gets the prize? Run in such a way as to get the prize.

Galatians 5:7 You were running a good race. Who cut in on you and kept you from obeying the truth?

When I run. I know I’m not going to win the prize. But I still run as though I have a chance. Maybe my prize is something different than yours. Maybe it’s not to cross the finish line first, but instead to live knowing I gave my all. It’s hard to run. You get out of breath. You get sore. Sometimes it feels like you don’t have it in you to take one more step. Have you stopped running? Are you walking or perhaps you’ve just sat down altogether. It’s time to start running again.

My favorite part of running is the community is creates. People you’ve never met smile and talk to you. As you run, volunteers cheer you on along the way. Do these people know you? Not usually. They don’t know you’re story or why your running. They just know you are trying and they want you to keep going. They smile, they clap, they call out encouragement. It spurs you on, gives you a little spring in your step, just enough to get to the next mile marker. Then as you approach the finish line… they announce your name. Those that finished before you are there. They cheer. It’s like your own personal standing ovation.

Hebrews 12 Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.

You know how hard you tried. You know the places you wanted to quit running. The places were your mouth was dry, your feet hurt, sweat was blinding you. Still you finished.

The good news is there is a finish line, my friends! And there is a whole crowd waiting to cheer you in.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

It's finally here!

I've know you've been waiting...

For what? You don't remember?

The zoo post of course!

Unfortunately, I cannot take credit for the photos here. Thanks to K for sharing. She got some great shots.

Just tell the kids the butterflies are playing (wink...wink)

The next two show are examples of the butterflies matching their surrounding

I think this is my favorite picture that she took.
It looks like the flower is lit from within.

Here we have Buddha - god of the meerkats.
This dude just sat there like this watching over his
dominion. It cracked me up.

Did you notice the zebra legs or did you just
look again since I mentioned it? Btw all zebras
are named Zeke. I don't know why I just think they
should be.

This photo I can take some credit for. I pointed out
that it would be cool to get one with the bee on it.
See we go to the zoo and look at the flowers. We did see
an occasional animal as well.

Lean on me
I'll be your shoulder to cry on.

Almost looks like Siamese giraffes

Back to the flowers. But this photo is like
a rare perfect shot to me. So much texture.
And it's pretty.

How you doin'?

This guy (or gal.. not sure) also cracked me up. (it doesn't take much
as you can tell)You can't tellfrom the photo but he's put himself right
in front of the jet intothe tank. It was like he was at the spa getting
a massage. He just stayed in that one spot for the longest time.

I guess he just needed to sit down.
Thus endth our day at the zoo.

Now wasn't that worth waiting for?
Don't answer that ...

Friday, September 11, 2009

One is not the lonliest number

Remember learning about imaginary numbers in math class? (I know I just lost half of you, but don't worry it's not a math lesson, just hang in there)

I recently decided to participate in an online book club. I've never done one before. I'm wading into the pool of techological advancement. It's been interesting already and we haven't even started discussing the book. I've met a few other women who I can relate too... Imagine that! There has been some back and forth about living as a single, the desire for spouses and children and relations between singles and their married friends. I've been thinking about it for a couple days.

I was out running the other day and it hit me. There is no such thing as being single. One is an imaginary number. We as humans are made to be in relationship; and that comes in many flavors, shapes and sizes. It is not limited to a husband/wife or boyfriend/girlfriend senario. We have family memebers and friends. Even if we had absolutely no other person, God is still with us. Even God himself is not one but lives in relationship with himself. One is an imaginary number! Who ever said you don't use math in the real world??

Just like the process of running has been more about the mental than the physical for me, so is singleness. It's all in how your percieve it. It doesn't mean there won't be days where I won't feel sad or lonely or hurt over lack of a particular relationship, but those feelings are just a part of life and we all feel them about something at times. We also feel joy and exitement - seek the things that help you feel alive.

Back to the math for a minute. The symbol for an imaginary number is (i). Lower case i. Not I. It's easy to become selfish and self-serving when you aren't forced to confront compromise often. Whether we are old, young, married or single, we should strive to live our lives out as an i - so that i become less and live serving I AM.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Wet -N- Wild

Over the holiday weekend, I was offered a special treat.... Drive to Ohio and spend some time at the water park with these cool boys below and my aunt and uncle. (Thanks again guys for the invite) I didn't take my camera down into the water park - I was too busy going on the slides with the boys. So here's a couple shots from the hotel room.

How cute are we?? I love my K, he is so sweet and amazing with younger kids (sometimes not so much his brother, but still more than other brothers I know) He and I can talk for hours and crack ourselves up and we love games. Cantlepepper anyone???

And A. man... whew he's Jim Carrey in compact form. 100% energy and drama. But who can resist the freckles. I told to come take a picture with me and he says, "I already did."
"No you didn't. K took one with me, but you didn't."
"Yeah..... 1st communion." (this was several months ago and I did make him take a picture with me then. I am his God-mother. I have that right!)
In order to get him in the picture I told him, we'd be silly. I think this qualifies.

Angels of Love

** Don't get me started on that pink hat. We'll pretend it isn't there**

These are my fellow prayer warriors and future missionary friends. Several years ago God provided a sweet time for all of us to get together and join in entering the presence of God with and for each other. It’s been awhile since all 4 of us were together. It basically took an act of God to make it happen (we get way to busy in our lives with jobs and school and such). But what a joy to an evening eating, laughing and praying for our Jesus to send us out as 'angels of love' wherever He would like.