hesed: covenant love; everlasting: never ending.

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This is not make believe.

“…make no mistake,
this is not make believe.” (all the miles, s.m.)

I think this song is so beautiful. You’ll have to click the link probably and look up lyrics for this to make any sense– I think it’s worth it, her music and God’s heart for me is all so stark and striking. Besides, I had to write and sing and cry for about an hour to make sense of my feelings, so you’ll just have to “journey on” as Dr. Green would say.

This is a song describing the journey one faces as a “lover”. She continually uses the phrase “this is not make believe” and the sheer authenticity of her words is alone enough to bring me to tears. That phrase describes both her moments of great frustration and great joy as a lover.

In the first verse the comments she hears from both well-meaning friends who unintentionally discourage her and those who willingly tear her down, inject fear & hopelessness into her relationship. Bluntly she admits that all these struggles are “not make believe”  while still trying to confidently agree that God is on her side.

In the second verse you can tell that the time and the distance is getting to her. I have often found myself at my weakest in tears clinging desperately to what I know to be true, praying to feel it in that moment, though I do not. It is then that I cleave to all this with fierceness; I must believe, I must! At that moment, my statement that all that I believe “is not make believe” is a cry, reaching out to God through all the uncertainty.

What follows is a bridge in which the self-convincing continues and grows to a climax. After every statement, the heart question is: “is this not make believe?” For would I rather have the mystery & the madness and the rains? I know that hell is the only place one can be free of all love’s pain. I come to the conclusion that I know both devils, yet which is worse?

The musical interlude seems to be a place for her to regain composure, although it’s possible I only think so because it’s at this point that I break down. But what comes after the breakdown? For both of us it’s surrender. Surrender & peace because I admit that “I have no claim on the future.” So what else can I do? Not only is there nothing esle to do, but it’s the only thing that make sense anyway because He cares for me. He is a friend of us- me & my lover- because it is our loving that He uses to make us more like Him.  He makes our blood, our flesh, the ground on which we stand.

He walks with us.
Make no mistake.

My own heart cannot win this battle because He already has. The battle we fight against our own impatience is one that he has already won. All we need to do is surrender to Him.

& this is not make believe.

Sacrifice?

Cold & Happy

I have unanswered prayers;
I have trouble I wish wasn’t there;
And I have asked 1,000 ways
that You would take my pain away.

I am trying to understand
how to walk this weary land;
Make straight the paths that crookedly lie
oh Lord, before these feet of mine.

(your hands, j.j.h.)

“I am trying to understand”… but am I?

Someone told me how they sometimes read Scripture and feel like it’s speaking right to them: “Look, you need to change,” and that they feel like saying right back: “I. don’t. care.”  I feel like that sometimes. My motivation for wanting to change is so screwed up and my desires for reconciliation are shallow and me-centered. I know this, and do I even really want to change? Sometimes, I feel like I don’t. God please change my heart.

This week I was confronted with 3 people who needed me to change. This was an interesting way to spend Holy Week. Being confronted by the way that your personality causes trouble for others is not an easy thing at all. I wanted to spend the week thinking about Jesus and his sacrifice and he wanted me to spend it wrestling with what people think of me. Why? I think it was because he wants me to know that I need to make a sacrifice. I need to sacrifice my respectability for our reconciliation.

“If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men.” (Romans 12:19)

Because that’s what matters… it matters more than my reputation; my hide-my-issues-from-others attitude. It matters most.

“Inside matters most,” to misquote my best friend.

But most of all, Lord… I’ve asked you to take all my pain away… somehow, I don’t think that’s always best. Okay, how ’bout you just do what is best and then help me trust you? Ok. good.

oh. and please help me to mean all these things I’m saying.
I love you.

(yeah. & that too, Lord. that too.)

My First Real DIY Project

Sandra & I have been wanting to make these curtains for months. It all started when we found these cute place mats with mustard-yellow embroidered flowers at Target. We liked the fabric better than anything we had seen at Joanne’s and so we just went with it– mainly because I said I thought I could make them. Well, that was in September and here it’s March and I really wanted to make it happen. Since I finished the MTEL I decided to give myself the freedom to take on this fun project–with a lot of advice from my friend Kathleen who is an expert on making curtains and all kinds of cool stuff.

Step #1: I laid the curtains out on the ironing board and safety pinned them together. I lined up the flowers so that the pattern would be continuous throughout the curtains. Three place mats = one curtain.

(they overlap about 1.3 inches)

Step #2: I then placed the special “stitck-witchery” between the two edges of the fabric. (“Stitch witchery” is a sort of tape that melts when you heat it and can be used for “no-sew” projects– read: my sewing machine is broken.) The instructions said iron over it at the “silk setting” for 3-5 seconds. However, since the place mats were rather thick turned the iron to its cotton setting and ironed on both sides until the tape was melted.

Step #3: I repeated this with the other place mat.

Step #4: Then I did the same thing with the other 3 place mats resulting in two square cafe curtains.

Step #5: I purchased two spring tension rods ($5.99 a piece at Bed Bath &  Beyond) and 2 sets of 7 curtain rings on clips ($9.99 in the kids curtains section at BB&B)

Levolor A70042 13315 28 48 White Spring TENS Rod

Step #6: I hung them up! Yay!

Finished product:

What do you think?

A post about what I have been thinking lately is in the works. For now I have 8 stellar papers to grade because my students are brilliant. 🙂

“hold out your hand…


…yours is the only one that I dare to land upon.”

(“hummingbird” – the weepies)

So I have decided to start “blogging” again. It’s funny because it’s not really blogging. It’s the random journaling I do when I’m exhausted, frustrated, elated, or just avoiding work. But the real reason I’m doing thing is because I re-read my old blog(s) from high school and beyond. I was encouraged; encouraged & challenged. I do not want my life to be about me. I want it to be about Jesus. I want serving him to be the first thing on my mind in the morning and the last thing on my mind at night. I want him to be the reason I teach. I want him to be the reason I have coffee with a friend. I want him to be the reason I go to church on Sunday morning and to a bar with my roomate Saturday night. But more than anything, I want Jesus to be at the core of my relationship with Mike. I want Jesus to be the reason we’re together…and (Lord willing) the reason we get married.

“Are you so foolish? After beginning by means of the Spirit, are you now trying to finish by means of the flesh?” (Gal. 3:3)

Ah, getting married. Hummingbird has so much meaning for me right now. The Weepies’ write such poetic and simple lyrics; they always get right to the point– and almost always reflect  something that I have been thinking/feeling recently.

“Always been like a hummingbird,
and I can’t sit still.
Listen up, lover listen up, I never will.”

I’ve always been like this. I am a hummingbird flitting from flower to flower faster than you can breathe. I move from idea to idea, feeling to feeling… fifty-three beats per second. For some reason, though it’s quite inconvenient, God made me this way.  Why? I think it was because he wanted me to learn to be patient and trust Him. That’s something I’m really wrestling with these days. So…

“Sweetness captures honeybees in time;
Amber like your eyes, amber like your eyes;
Maybe there’s a season when I’ll taste that wine,
A thimble at a time, a thimbleful of wine.”

Oh, Lord. I want to learn patience. But I can’t wait for that season.

Sky.