This weekend was lame!
Friday I stayed up all night working a few extra hours. Saturday I slept all day because I stayed up all night. Saturday night my brother came up. (that wasn't lame) Then I carved a pumpkin (see below) and we waited for the Trick-or-Treaters to come. We waited....and waited....and waited.....and I think we got about 5 kids. We were both so exhausted that we were in bed early. (forgetting about the extra hour of sleep) We awoke on Sunday STILL exhausted and rushed to church to find an empty building since all the smart people slept an extra hour! Sunday afternoon I slept some more and then woke up from my nap with a stomach ache. I watched 3 episodes of the West Wing, went back to bed and here I am today, bright and chipper on Monday morning.
I still don't understand why all the Trick-or-Treaters avoided my house. Do you think my pumpkin scared them away?
at 11:30 AM
The Idiot by Dostoevsky
"Well then indeed I would feel drawn away somewhere, and I kept fancying that if you went straight ahead, walked a long, long way, and got beyond that line, the very one where the sky meets the earth, that the whole key to the mystery would be there, and directly, you would see a new life, a thousand times more vivid and tumultuous than ours."
at 3:32 PM
Sometimes I think of you and I remember that you are amazing.
But sometimes when I think of you I feel very very ugly.
And one of these days it will break. This hold you have on me will snap and I will fly higher than the tallest mountain and all of my dreams will come together like a beautiful patchwork quilt and I will know that I could have never done it without you. I will also know that my anger towards you will never blow away because you have shredded my soul into humiliation.
And I wish for you that your dreams will form as well. And I wish to know that you will be okay. And I wish that I never have to think of you again. And I wish that somehow all of the lack of care that I have been so bold to deny will not leave this heart empty forever. And I wish that someday I will feel lovely again. And I will, without you.
at 12:04 PM
This past weekend I went to Door County with my parents. It was a wonderful trip! It was so great to return and re-visit all of our favorite places.
Below: pictures of our Sunday afternoon cruise. I LOVE afternoon autumn drives!
I can't even imagine what the colors were 1 week ago.
Below: Dad and I made mom quite nervous as we climbed in the caves and rocks at Cavepoint County Park.
Mom's are born to be nervous I think. It was fun! Cavepoint is such a beautiful place!
Come on Old Man!!!
at 12:29 PM
He ran around with my camera taking pictures of all the most important things! Somehow I managed to escape all of the pictures which is probably a good thing.
We are so excited to be in our new church building. The great adventure is starting to take some new turns!
(the photographer himself!)
at 8:05 AM
I guess I have some things on my mind, questions churning with a bit of conviction. But maybe I'm not sure what to do with the conviction. I'm tempted to top it off with some whipped cream and disguise it as a tasty morsel of "whatever".
Why do I pray? What is prayer? Are my needs more effectively met when I set aside the time to verbalize them? Really? I don't understand. Why can't prayer just be normal dialogue with God...just like I talk with myself when I'm scrubbing the bathtub or taking a walk down the lakefront? Does it have to be so sacred?
What about going to church? Why is it so important? Why does church attendance make me a more faithful Christian? Even if people don't admit it....it's an underlying assumption that is eating away at me!
What about all the rules that we are taught when we are children? ...the "do's and don'ts" of being a good Christian person? Why do they make you "Christian" or "not-Christian"?....why can't they just rest with levels of morality?
Sometimes I feel like the standards given in Scripture cause a person to be so above, beyond, and uptight in relation to the normal world. By abiding by the standards I'm given within the Bible, I then become religious and I don't want to be religious, I just want to be plain and passionate. Is that wrong?
I believe in God. I love God, Jesus Christ, Holy Spirit...the whole gang of 'em. I believe that God's love is the most important thing in this life, and I believe that nothing matters more than to share that True Love with everyone in every possible way.
So what if I don't go to church? So what if I don't memorize the Roman's Road to Salvation?
So what if I don't really formally pray a whole lot? Am I a weaker Christian?
I don't understand why being a Christian has to become such a supernatural journey of mysterious jargon. I don't understand why being a faithful child of God requires that I live this life in the world but with my senses sort of suspended above anything carnal. I live a balanced life. I take care of the body I've been given. (well...maybe I shouldn't have eaten that McDonald's double cheeseburger yesterday). I don't entertain myself with worthless empty pleasures. I evaluate and re-evaluate my actions and my thinking and I live passionately with God as my grounding. I'm not just a "good person"....I DO draw my entire existence, every breath, every effort from the connection I hold with my God.
I am one who loves people...all kinds of people. I desire to build my life upon relationships, relationships of love, understanding, peace, healing... I want to walk in other people's shoes, to eat with them, to know their mind, and to hear their heart beating. But when I'm walking in their shoes and sitting at their dinner table I feel like moment by moment I'm shedding off religious requirements. AND I LIKE IT!!!
I want to just live my life, my normal earthly life. I want to experience this world. I want to meet people. I want to help people. I want to learn more. I want to enjoy my existence with an underlying trust that God is taking care of the details. If everything I do already presupposes that I'm trusting God...then why do I need to stop and make sure I'm doing all the things that the Bible is commanding?
Sometimes I guess I wonder if I'm really a Christian. Maybe that's the question: What's a Christian? All of these pressures...all of these expectations...all of these feelings of being out of whack and totally NOT normal....I don't feel like I signed up for those feelings. I'm not writing off the Bible. I'm not wishing to excuse or denounce Christianity....not yet anyway. I am just so tired of feeling guilty for being down-to-earth, for being vulnerable, for being real and humble, and kind.
This past weekend I was challenged to re-evaluate the idea of prayer.
I guess I just don't understand how I want to react to that.
at 2:57 PM