Sunday, January 31, 2010

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Kathy Griffin

There's an email list that I'm on. Recently someone sent out a chain email about all the horrible things Kathy had said and how they would never again watch anything she is on. And, of course, people started responding. They called Kathy a female dog. They made fun of her looks. They trashed her completely and totally. This was done by people who claim very loudly to be Christians.

All I could think was that God loves her equally as much as He loves them.

Kathy isn't a Christian. She doesn't claim to be. So, why should anyone be surprised when she doesn't speak as they think a Christian should speak?

The bashing has bothered me for days. And, in the past, I would have responded to the hateful emails, but I learned the hard way that pointing out a different response or suggesting a different view is not tolerated. So, I'm venting on here.

John 13:34-35

Why stay on the list? Every now and then beauty does come through.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

If we could...

"If we could muster a portion of the patriotism we feel toward our earthly nations into a patriotism and bravery in concert with the kingdom of God, the enemy would take fewer casualties to be sure."
Donald Miller, Searching For God Knows What

Loved this when I read it and still do, and with the Olympics and Super Bowl coming on us fast and furiously I think we could probably also say "If we could muster a portion of the devotion we feel toward our team..."

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Prior to this I didn't know...

I stumbled across this amazing blog called Prior. It is soooo cool. And what really freaked me out was it is my cousin's blog. I didn't even know she had a blog! I love it! Her work is beautiful. I knew I was out of the loop on a lot of stuff, but apparently I didn't even know there was a loop. So, if you love really creative, fun, unique, one of a kind type of decorating, you will really like Lezlee's site.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

All I Can Pray for Over and Over is Wisdom

I can't sleep, which is a little weird because I take medicine to sleep. Haiti is very heavy on my mind. It's funny how you can feel numb and burdened at the same time. The last few years Haiti has been on my radar. Somehow I found blogs of people either ministering there or involved with organizations on the ground and have been following the progress of whatever they're working on. Sometimes I feel like I actually know them and I've been blessed to actually meet some of them. I was part of a music festival last summer that raised funds for a Haiti project.

So, back to being numb and burdened. I haven't let all my walls down and completely grieved. That probably would have happened if the word had not come that the people I "know" are okay, for now. Then I got an email from Shaun for the Compassion Bloggers. It was a bit overwhelming.
  • Sadly, we anticipate there will be many deaths.
  • We anticipate thousands of children and families will have lost everything.
  • We anticipate many of our church-based child development centers will have been destroyed.
But, I guess when you're feeling numb things can push you to the edge easier. That email did push me. Then, he put it in his blog and did a very good job. So, I would highly encourage you to go there to read it.

I've been reading and watching about how the airport is tied up, fuel is running out, and the seaport is demolished. And all I can pray, over and over, is "God give them wisdom. Give everyone involved wisdom. Wisdom of creativity to move debris quickly without much machinery. Wisdom in medicine to move correctly and precisely. Wisdom in engineering to get supplies where they need to be in an efficient manner. Wisdom of organization for all efforts to run smoothly. Wisdom to act in a way that is helpful both physically and spiritually."

If you want to learn more about the people I have followed for a few years click below.
Aaron Ivey
Dreaming Big Dreams
The Livesay Haiti Weblog
Real Hope For Haiti Rescue Center
Hands and Feet Project

I think I can go to sleep now. God, give them wisdom.

Monday, January 11, 2010

Delish Soup with Eggplant, Chickpeas, & Fire Roasted Tomatoes

2 T olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 eggplant, chopped
8 garlic cloves, minced or 2 t garlic powder
4 cups vegetable broth
1/4 t dried rosemary
3/4 t salt
1/4 t black pepper
1 can chickpeas, rinsed and drained
1 can diced fire roasted tomatoes

Heat olive oil in heavy pot over medium heat. Add onion, eggplant, and garlic. Cook 10 minutes, stir often. Add remaining ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer for at least 20 minutes.

Top with your choice of cheese. I like Pepper Jack.

Not Surprised, But Ticked Off Anyway

I wasn't surprised to see the outcome of the survey Anne talks about here and yet, I'm still majorly ticked off. And I wonder if there is any hope that people will change or adapt their views.

Maybe reading these might help:
Leviticus 19:9-10
Deuteronomy 15:7
Deuteronomy 26:6-9, 12
Nehemiah 5
Job 5:8-16
Job 34:17-19
Psalm 10:14
Psalm 12:5
Psalm 140:12
Proverbs 31:8
Isaiah 1:16-17
Isaiah 25:4
Isaiah 41:17
Isaiah 58:6
Jeremiah 9:23-24
Jeremiah 22:3, 13-17
Amos 5:24
Matthew 5:42
Luke 1:52-53
Luke 3:11
Luke 4:16-21
Luke 6:20-21
Luke 7:22
Luke 12:33
2 Corinthians 9:6-9
1 Timothy 6:18
James 1:27
James 2:5

I mean, really, Conservative Religious Activists surveyed showed more concern about immigration than poverty! If this is true then please refer to me as a progressive activist.

I need to stop gritting my teeth now.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

15 in 14 for 8

Today I was glancing through USA Weekend. Yeah, I know, it's Wednesday. Anyway, the headline about the Mayo Clinic diet book caught my eye. Apparently, if you follow the plan you will lose 8 pounds in the first two weeks.

What you need to do in the two weeks is:

1. Add five healthy habits.
2. Break five unhealthy habits.
3. Adopt five bonus habits.

I'm not great at math. I'm not even good at math, but I'm pretty sure that comes to 15 things I would need to remember to lose 8 pounds. Wow! I have trouble remembering one thing, like don't eat fat stuff that tastes wonderful. I'm pretty sure I would have a lot of trouble keeping up with 15 things in 14 days.

It's all good stuff. It just made me laugh.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Books Being Read

Books being read in our home at this time:

A Midsummers Night's Dream (Play) - Shakespeare
Life Together - Dietrich Bonhoeffer
The Cost of Discipleship - Dietrich Bonhoeffer
Spiritual Leadership - J. Oswald Sanders
The Voyage of The Dawn Treader - C.S. Lewis
Pagan Christianity: Exploring the Roots of Our Church Practices - Frank Viola & George Barna
The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde - Robert Louis Stevenson
Searching For God Knows What - Donald Miller
My First Summer In The Sierra - John Muir
Original Intent - David Barton

Just thought I'd share.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Suicide Is Not Painless

Let me just say up front that this is a brain dump. Nothing I say here is meant to hurt anyone, judge anyone, change anyone or mess with anyone anyway or anyhow. It is just me letting out junk that is bouncing around in my head screaming to be let out.

Of the last five funerals I've been to, three have been suicides. One might have been accidental, but the other two were obviously not. One was not spur of the moment. It was very much premeditated. I don't know about the other. All three losses left, and continue to leave, huge holes in the lives around them. They physically ripped themselves away leaving behind bewildered, heartbroken, devastated people.

One still makes me cry almost every time it crosses my mind. I look at the family left behind and I feel a mass of messy emotions pour through me. The one that usually surfaces first is dismay, but anger follows a close second. Anger at what has been done to this beautiful group. Anger about what he turned his back on. And then the permanence of loss whirls it all together creating deep sadness.

Today, along with hundreds of people, I said good-bye to a classmate. Jimmy impacted so, so many individuals during his lifetime. His brother and father conducted the service. I can't imagine doing that. It wasn't a bit easy for them. They were very honest about that, but they were also open about Who was getting them through it. And, they acknowledged that the future would not be easy without their son and brother around. Neither tried to paint Jimmy as a superhero or perfect person. I didn't raise him, grow up in the same house, or live with him for 26 years like his father, brother, and wife did, but the Jimmy I have always known had a mega-watt smile and a kind or fun word. It looks like the last time we tangled on Facebook it was over him cheering on ut. I had to explain to him which university was the oldest in Texas and therefore the best. He suggested the dorms must smell pretty bad if they were that old.

His brother expressed his wish that he knew what Jimmy had been feeling, that he could have felt his pain and talked to him about it. Apparently, he had played it close to the vest. I understand that. I did it for a long time. Kept a smile going on the outside for those on the outside. I have no idea how it was for Jimmy, if it was something that had been eating away for a long time or if it hit overwhelmingly hard and fast. I just know he's gone and a lot of people are grieving.

His dad talked about I Corinthians 4:9 and being made a spectacle to the world. This choice has made them a spectacle and now the world will watch how they respond. He shared a quote from another pastor. "I want the kind of faith that when I'm chained and thrown into the deepest, darkest, most inner cell for something I didn't do I will still sing praises at midnight." This family has been flung into that cell. They know it will not be easy to sing praises, but they want to.

During my trip to Nashville I sat in my hotel room and watched a screener for a film coming out this month. One of the topics is suicide. I cried, some because of things I expressed earlier. I never dreamed I would be sitting in a funeral so soon and dealing with the same subject again. "Could I have done more?" is asked a lot by different characters throughout the movie. And here's my thoughts: Sometimes, maybe many times, the answer is "yes." Sometimes every possible thing that can be humanly done is done and the tragedy still takes place.

I think Jimmy's dad said it best with "If God doesn't intervene He has a reason."