Psalm 45:10-11, 13-15

Listen to me, O royal daughter; take heart to what I say. Forget your people and your homeland far away. For your royal husband delights in your beauty; honor him, for he is your lord. [...] The bride, a princess, waits within her chambers, dressed in a gown woven with gold. In her beautiful robes, she is led to the king, accompanied by her bridesmaids. What a joyful, enthusiastic procession as they enter the king's palace!



Thursday, April 27, 2006

I haven't been writing this week, because I've been reading (woohoo) Where Girls Come First: The Rise, Fall, and Surprising Revival of Girls' Schools. It's a good read so far...very interesting. (the wheels in the brain are turning...hmm...am I envisioning my very own girls' school in my head? Quite possibly. Or at least a secondary girl-based curriculum. Oh, how the brain works!)

Friday, April 21, 2006

My mind has gone ADD today...


I feel like my thoughts have been everywhere today...some good, some not so good...sigh...some carried over from yesterday. Let's see romance, God, the perfect black shoes, raunchy culture...not to mention cooking and sewing.

By the way, I burnt the tips of my fingers melting chocolate. Well...they're not burnt-burnt, but definitely very red. And I still haven't reconciled with my sewing machine who insisted on continuing breaking the thread after I adjusted the tension and rethreaded. It made me think, 'No wonder why people buy their clothes.' Although there is something to say about making/designing your own clothes. It's a finished project you can be proud in. Although...I over did it with all my sewing projects and dug myself into a little hole. So, my fears of failure and the need to strive to show my worth are continually having to be fought. I refuse to return to that place where the walls in my room seem to be pressing into me...ah! the pressure!

And so, a conversation from last night regarding the biblicalness and validity, so to speak of the believers pray (by the way, this is the God thinking just in case you didn't catch that) briefly remained in my mind this morning. Just for those of you who are interested what I mean, here's what I mean: Today's Christian culture has this what we call "believer's prayer," which people pray when they come to Christ. Last Sunday was Easter Sunday and my pastor's nephew gave his testimony, which quite amazingly showed God's grace and desire to restore people to himself. (Even as I'm writing this my mind is going ADD! I just returned from looking for and adding pictures to my photobucket. Aahh!) However, the nephew had come to a climax in this life (thus far) and said he made a deal with God that if God worked out the details of a certain situation then he'd never leave God. Sequently, the Lord worked out the details and the nephew said, "And I've never left him since."
The first thing that popped into my head was, 'But did he pray the prayer!' Don't worry, guys...because right after I realized I thought that I laughed out loud...in my head, of course. Does the Bible ever talk about a believer's prayer? In the Gospels or Epistles? No. When Jesus healed people and said, "your sins are forgiven" did he ever say, "Wait!---first pray this prayer then you're all good." Umm, nope. So where did we get this believer's prayer anyway? Which lead the conversation to James 2:14-20 (and continuing) that talks about faith without works is dead. (I'm now realizing that this thought alone is quite long.) And that if you truly believe something your faith will be manifested in what you do/how you live your life. Which led to question: what about those people that say, "but I've prayed the prayer!" but there is no evidence, no fruit in what they say they believe...they live in the same way they lived without Christ. Ultimately, no human has a say on a person's salvation---thank the Lord!---but all evidence would point to no---that their faith is dead.

Whew! That thought is done...but I'm looking out the window and I do hope that is rains.

So, I'm sure some of you are thinking, 'What the heck did she mean by raunchy culture?' Well...it's actually very interesting. Our [pop] culture is raunchy...very much so, no denying it. There's this book I came across through a few different websites last night, it's called Female Chauvinist Pigs : Women and the Rise of Raunch Culture. All I'm going to say, is what I've read from reviews and pertaining articles is that this book is quite thought-provoking in relation to our culture, which definitely needs redressing. Oh, by the way that author is Ariel Levy, contributing editor of New York magazine. I just came across this, but thought it also might be an intersting read A Return to Modesty: Discovering the Lost Virtue by Wendy Shalit.

On romance...I did receive this lovely haiku today.

And then I had this thought today, 'Would my younger self have liked me now? Would she have liked how I turned out? What would would have happened if I had gone to England to study cinematics? Or became a fashion designer and moved to NY? What if...what if..." Then, I thought if I hadn't been where I have...then I wouldn't be where I am now. And then, I also thought...that none of those things would ever have happened, because God already had everything planned...there is more detail in that thought that I'm not going into now...I was on the phone...

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

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Yesterday

Lines

Lines written at a small distance from my House
and sent me by my little Boy to the
Person to whom they are
addressed


It is the first mild day of March:
Each minute sweeter than before,
The red-breast sings from the tall larch
That stands beside our door.

There is a blessing in the air,
Which seems a sense of joy to yield
To the bare trees, and mountains bare,
And grass in the green field.

My Sister! ('tis a wish of mine)
Now that our morning meal is done,
Make haste, your morning task resign;
Come forth and feel the sun.

Edward will come with you, and pray,
Put on with speed your woodland dress,
And bring no book, for this one day
We'll give to idleness.

No joyless forms shall regulate
Our living Calendar:
We from to-day, my friend, will date
The opening of the year.

Love, now an universal birth,
From heart to heart is stealing,
From earth to man, from man to earth,
--It is the hour of feeling.

One moment now may give us more
Than fifty years of reason;
Our minds shall drink at every pore
The spirit of the season.

Some silent laws our hearts may make,
Which they shall long obey;
We for the year to come may take
Our temper from to-day.

And from the blessed power that rolls
About, below, above;
We'll frame the measure of our souls,
They shall be tuned to love.

Then come, my sister I come, I pray,
With speed put on your woodland dress,
And bring no book; for this one day
We'll give to idleness.

Saturday, April 15, 2006

For Christ's love compels us, because we are convinced that one died for all, therefore all died. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again.

So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone, the new has come!


We implore you on Christ's behalf: Be reconciled to God. God made him who had no sin to be sin for us, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.

2 Corinthians 5:14-17, 20b-21

Thursday, April 13, 2006

Thank you...my wonderful man...for letting me cry on your shoulder...
Yesterday, my frustrations overwhelmed me once again...and I wrote, all I have to do is give them to You! But how hard that is at times. Lord, put Your hope in me...
Yesterday, I felt trapped. I realized that everything that had me so frustrated I couldn't get out of, and You were saying that was okay...all these things surrounding me were okay...And I looked up and saw someone who has everything and more that was taken from me and I said, "Why does she get everything?"
And You said what you said to Peter so long ago, "If I want him to remain until I come, what is that to you? You follow Me!"
Ay...words that are hard to hear, but so necessary. And so, I continue to realize that this is all part of the crucified life. When those men of old wrote about putting to death the flesh...this is what they meant. Galations 2:20, "I have been crucified with Christ; and it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself up for me."


Oh, the Wondrous Cross
Bids me come and die,
And find that I may truly live.

Tuesday, April 11, 2006

This word called hope...

Oh, Lord...my God...you have ordained my days...their unfoldings are in the palm of Your hand...I can see you there...almost smiling at me as I struggle with my uncertainty and battle for hope...You smile, because you know...You know the plans you hold...you know the outcome...You know the worthlessness of my worry as I sit and wonder the time for which these things will come to pass...or even if they will...Lord...you know...my heart...it still longs to know...but down there somewhere is a confident knowledge that you are in control...that your plan holds together in all goodness for me...and those so deeply involved...oh, my emotions are torn...my mind always wandering to this sacred place...this sought after desire...it's almost here...oh! but to hope and wait...aye...such a pain at times...I can feel the burden on my chest...and so, I know...I am to hope in You, seek You...and to wait silently for You to speak...oh, Lord...how I desire this obedience right now! Put it in my heart, my Lord...my God....

Lamentations 3:21-28
21This I recall to my mind, Therefore I have hope. 22The LORD'S lovingkindnesses indeed never cease, For His compassions never fail. 23They are new every morning; Great is Your faithfulness. 24"The LORD is my portion," says my soul, "Therefore I have hope in Him." 25The LORD is good to those who wait for Him, to the person who seeks Him. 26It is good that he waits silently for the salvation of the LORD. 27It is good for a man that he should bear the yoke in his youth. 28Let him sit alone and be silent since He has laid it on him.
~~**~~
Romans 5:2b-5
and we exult in hope of the glory of God.
3 And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; 4 and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope;
5 and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.


~~**~~

- a friend of a friend of an acquaintance wrote her feelings going through her own experience of this...yes, it lifted my hopes -
"Love, hope, and uncertainty -
To love is to allow hope into your life.To hope is to allow uncertainty into your life.To be uncertain is the essence of learning to trust God to bring only the disappointments He deems best."

Thursday, April 06, 2006

I am...


- uniquely designed - open hearted - pleasing to God - deep desire to follow Him - free-spirited - thoughtful - carefree - solid/stability - standing firm - molded for a specific call, a specific ministry since girlhood - wisdom of the ages - wise beyond her years - created to bring joy and fund to those around - joyful - happy-go-lucky - adventuresome - bold - fearless - diligent - bringer of joy - healer - His brightness shines all around you - inner joy - minister of freedom - spreads God’s love like butter on dry toast - sanctified - s3a valuable ruby, much refining and precious cutting resulting in a display of God’s beauty for the world to see - open heart - willing spirit - brave - eager for more of God - contentment - peaceful - helpful - humble - tenderness - gentle - God’s prize possession - fun-loving - wisdom beyond her years - smart - "joy of the Lord is in her," this is your strength - servant/servant’s heart - He has made you to be courageous - your hands will be used mightily as a strong, powerful, fierce, woman warrior - joyful - contagious joy - peace - comforter to others - full of the Father’s hope - confident - secure in following God’s desires, ways - this joy comes from her faith and security in Him - faithful - great things in Your name done through her - bold - passionate - tender - marching forward - hard-working - perseverer - strong - suited for war - warrior - advance the good news - mercy - compassion - prayer warrior - woman of truth - servant of the young - playful spirit - peaceful soul - faithful - humble - goes with the flow easily - lover of God - wants to please Him - dancer - worshiper - compassionate toward others - caring - striver of purity - passionate - compassionate - companion - gentle spirit - deep thinker - discerning - loyal - trustworthy -
Lord, my troubles consume me and my enemies overwhelm me...and I know I have nothing but You...and that is so hard at times...mostly when I’m struggling. My desires oppose me and each other. I struggle because I feel worthless without being able to align myself with some cause or purpose...something that will give me some kind of status in the world’s eye and the church’s eye as well. There’s a lie that says I’m different, that I don’t have enough, or the same things as others...but maybe I’m not...

Maybe you’re just taking me back to my original state...the way You designed me and intended me to be. It seems You just keep stripping and stripping away...and taking and taking everything I had to stand on and everything I thought I was and everything that gave me a position in the world. Maybe that is necessary, Lord. (I think I’m beginning to see that it really is.) Sometimes it feels like You’re doing it out of spite...maybe I was too proud or too consumed with what I could do on my own...or at least that’s how I feel when I think about it sometimes.
But I’m beginning to see that You are stripping away the hindrances...You’re stripping away the things that make me not the creation You designed and the things that make me not like You. It’s simple, really. It’s purifying. Painful. Yes, very painful...but necessary.

There is one thing I seem to always forget: hope. These months and weeks and years of stripping away the filth and the striving and the fears are for a better thing. Honestly, I know that...but it’s so hard to see life in that better place called hope when all I’ve ever been and known (even if it’s not my true state) is slowly being taken away. But hope!
Life my eyes up to the heavens! Where does my help come from? My help comes from You, Maker of Heaven...Creator of the Earth!

Oh, how I need You, Lord...You are my only Hope...You are my only prayer...so I will wait for You to come and rescue me...to come and give me life.

Lord, You are giving me new life...as painful as it is, You’re giving me new life. (Maybe this is what the crucified life is.)

My hope: Christ in me, the hope of glory.

My hope is the promise of new life.

Wednesday, April 05, 2006

Baby...it's raining outside

I really can't stay - Baby it's raining outside
I've got to go away - Baby it's wet outside
This evening has been - Been hoping that you'd drop in
So very nice - I'll hold your hands, they're cold as ice

I wish I knew how - Your eyes are like starlight now
To break this spell - I'll take your coat, your beard looks so swell
I ought to say no, no, no, sir - Mind if I move a little closer
At least I'm gonna say that I tried - What's the sense in hurting my pride
I really can't stay - Baby don't hold out Baby it's wet outside

I simply must go - Baby, it's raining outside
The answer is no - Ooh baby, it's cold outside
This welcome has been - I'm lucky that you dropped in
So nice and warm -- Look out the window at that storm

I really can't stay - Baby it's raining outside
I've got to go away - Baby it's cold outside
This evening has been - Been hoping that you'd drop in
So very nice - I'll hold your hands, they're cold as ice

Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Hello world! Standing there
Embracing the light of day
"Life is for the living", you say
Leaping
Over oceans so blue

Joyously celebrating
One Life so true
Eternally rooted in praise so sweet

O Romeo, Romeo, wherefore art thou Romeo?

The other day something made me think of Romeo & Juliet and more not so quite obsession with it in my earlier years, before I knew I was a princess. Obsessed may be too strong of a word, but I was close. Someone could say one line of the play and I could finish the scene. No joke. There were posters and quotes covering my room. I even slept under a canopy that told me my love would some day come. I thought it made me look like Juliet. At least it made me feel that way. I would even do my hair the same way Claire Danes did in Romeo & Juliet, which earned me the nickname Juliet at school. I was proud of it.


I thought the pinnacle of all romance was Romeo and Juliet and Shakespeare. I was sure I would meet love with words of "But soft! What light through yonder window breaks" and a fury of powerful emotions. That the world would spin and moonlight would always remind me of my love. That I might be swept away in a whirlwind of passionate, everlasting romance. To hear the words, "Sin from my lips? O trespass sweetly urged! Give me my sin again" would be the sweetest words. O, the young mind of a girl.


Somewhere along the years, the yearning for a Romeo and Juliet romance weaned. It may had something to do with the fact that I realized that they met, they wooed, they made an exchange of vows, and then they died....all within three days. Hmm...that sounds like a passionate, everlasting romance. Three days dead. That may have done it for me. I desired to spend more than three days with the love of my life. Three days, did they even know each other? They were teenagers speaking passionate words of love and lust fueled by their age and the tyranny of their feuding parents.


It was the unknown. I don’t know about you, but I want to be known by my love. Yes, it would be sweet to hear, "But soft! What light through yonder window breaks" but not at the expense of missing the heart of my lover. How empty it would be to look in his eyes and see my own desire, and not him? What is love but an expression of giving...a lasting covenant...a promise of sharing in life’s joys and sorrows...a fruitful delighting in each other...


...to have that dead in three days just for the exchange of a few sweet words?