Thursday, December 24, 2009

The Cage

My worst fear of all time is being restrained. Someone locking me up in a cage and leaving to rot all by myself in a tiny little cage with no purpose in life but to sit and wait for my death. Nothing else scares me more. I would rather die a million deaths than have that happen to me.

And yet, there are cages everywhere in my life. A cage of fear, fear that holds me back from saying something that needs to be said, fear that holds me back from expressing my "fullest me", fear that just puts me into this little mold of what I should be but never what I could be if I opened up the door of my cage.

There's also a cage of solitude. One that traps you in front of the television, in front of your video games, in front of the computer, in front of your telephone, your music player, etc., etc. You're trapped in a virtual world. Virtual meaning "NOT REAL." When your conversations start revolving around a world or a person that does not exist, you know that you're in a cage of solitude. Where did the rest of humanity go? When did we decide that the only way to entertain ourselves was to pick up our computers and go on facebook, or to pick up a controller and watch the O.C. or cartoons or the latest movie? When did our lives get so completely and utterly boring that we don't even talk to the people in the same room as us? Instead, we just watch others live another life and think that it's the greatest thing since cheese. I. HATE. IT. I want to break those chains more than anything. In fact, I have an urge to pick up a baseball bat and just start smashing the television in my living room at this very moment... but I will restrain myself.

the very world around me is a cage. The media is censored to tell me what it wants me to know, the schools and universities are censored to tell me what they want me to know, video games are censored to portray what they think they want me to know, books even portray what they want me to know. I do not hear about the things that my government or the big corporations don't want me to hear about. I do not hear about the life of the murderer. I do not hear about the lack of power a citizen really holds in this government we call a democracy. I do not hear about the lives of child soldiers in the Democratic Republic. So here I am. A product of the knowledge that has been predestined for me to know. Is there anything that I have truly figured out for myself? No. Not really. I am trapped at this very moment in a cage of predestined knowledge. For creativity is something very rare. And those who possess it are diamonds in the rough. Do I have the power to question, to think, to create? I don't know.

In many ways, the bars of my cage are a little more flexible because of the truth God's been able to show me through Jesus Christ. The truth and grace and love He brings me is the only truth that I have any sound belief in. As crazy as that might sound. Cause in every piece of nature, in every person, in every creative work, I see a glimpse of a creator. The divine artist. And Jesus, who's life displayed the greatest kind of truth and love that I've ever seen, claimed to be God, and so i believe. I believe the man who's life was not caged. And who was killed for it.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

All You Need is Love...

Love without courage and wisdom is sentimentality, as with the ordinary church member.
Courage without love and wisdom is foolhardiness, as with the ordinary soldier.
Wisdom without love and courage is cowardice, as with the ordinary intellectual.
But the one who has love, courage, and wisdom moves the world. -Ammon Hennacy

The world is one messed up place. It's really hard to think about it all for a long period of time without eventually wanting to just put those thoughts away and find something happier to let your mind dwell upon.

There are wars today in the name of peace and justice. There are churches fighting against the rights of gays and lesbians in the name of truth. There are atheists today fighting against religion in the pursuit of reason. There are citizens today "tolerating" people out of "love."

And there's something really bothersome about it all. Something that makes me want to break. Because, yes, I think it's important to have peace, to have justice, to have truth, to have reason, to have love. I just don't think humanity has quite gotten their fingers around how to get these things all together, or maybe, what all of them really mean.

We value supporting our troops, going to war to bring peace and freedom. Can I ask whether this is simply one-sided? What about the people we are fighting against? Are they also included in this equation which equals out to peace and freedom? If we support the value of love, I don't think killing our neighbour quite follows this trend. If we follow the value of courage, then I still don't think killing our neighbour follows this trend. For if you were truly courageous, you would chance to sacrifice yourself to try and help someone by not killing them. That would be the scary part-facing death to help someone else-and it requires true courage. If we support the value of peace, then no, war is not the method. Arguments require two people, but they can be avoided by the gentle kindness of one. Peace is finding a resolution that puts another above yourself. is it possible that instead of going to war, that we could send doctors? that we could send teachers? that we could send missionaries? For getting rid of hate requires a change of heart. Are we willing to put some cream on the callouses of hate that have built up on the hearts of our enemies, or are we indifferent? Hm.

Thoreau said "the mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation." There's something about our way of living that lacks something... concrete. As if we know the principles, the values, the arches which govern our actions, but we don't know how to fit them all together. Or maybe we don't want to. Because we know that if we were to ever determine the true arch that governs our actions, it would require something of us that we don't want to have to be. And so we are forever in a state of desperation, striving for love, courage, wisdom, but never quite living them out to the point of their true fullness.

But then again, maybe we can find them in God. ;)

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Gotta Love Keats

So I'm a lover of John Keats. He's pretty much a genius. Anyways, this is one of his love poems. ;) Hope you enjoy this poem as much as I did!

Bright Star, Would I were Steadfast as Thou Art, by John Keats

Bright star, would I were steadfast as thou art
Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night,
And watching, with eternal lids apart,
Like nature's patient sleepless eremite,
The moving waters at their priestlike task
Of pure ablution round earth's human shores,
Or gazing on the new soft-fallen mask
Of snow upon the mountains and the moors;
No yet still steadfast, still unchangeable,
Pillow'd upon my fair love's ripening breast,
To feel for ever its soft fall and swell,
Awake for ever in a sweet unrest,
Still, still to hear her tender-taken breath,
And so live ever or else swoon to death.

Sunday, November 15, 2009


So as Christmas is approaching, I felt that a little spiel on love would be appropriate. hahaha. When you like someone, you have one of those warm fuzzy feelings. Crazy wonderful feelings that makes you smile in the middle of the most boring class or burst out laughing at the most inappropriate times as you think back on something that happened four days ago. You think about someone far too much and hope that they don't notice, or secretly, that they do, and return those thoughts. It's absolutely wonderful, and yet entirely depressing too when you don't actually have anyone in love with you. hahaha. (please don't feel bad for me or try and comfort me, I promise I am okay with my singleness-I'm waiting on God and trusting in his timing).

But the above talks very specifically about a specific type of "love," which I would argue is more like than love. That love is the one shared between a couple who is attracted to one another, and yet we so often miss out on an even more inspiring type of love, one shared between friends, family, and our "neighbour."

There are so many people that we are quick to judge and cast the blame on. They are just too "weird" or "awkward" or "lame." Hm. I'd like to know whether you ever actually got to know that weird, awkward, or lame person, or if you're just saying that to get yourself out of a sticky situation of actually getting to know someone that other people might not like so much. Maybe, in their own original way, they are only trying to be understood.

If we took the time to understand them, we'd realize how amazing that person is. Their story, their life that made them who they are today, the person's heart. I guess the question that remains is whether we can do it.

Is it possible to love someone with that kind of passion? Maybe. People might try to love people because they think it's the right thing to do. Which generally sucks. Your making them into a charity case. But if people loved people because they genuinely wanted to love them, to get to know their story, to understand the person they are today, THEN we'd get somewhere. What would that look like?

1 Corinthians 13: 4Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. 5It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. 6Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. 7It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres.

8Love never fails.

If I knew someone that loved like that... wow. Maybe then I wouldn't have to convince my friends that life is worth living. They would find purpose simply in the community of loving and encouraging people who surround them.

Now then, I'm going to try and love like 1 Corinthians 13 says. And yes, I will fail. But I'm going to try hard. :)

Friday, November 6, 2009

Bursting the Bubble

So today, a couple of my classes happened to bring up the same concept and I thought, wow, that's pretty cool. Why not blog about it? So, here I am!

Technology is pretty cool. It's given us a realm of connection to our friends almost 24/7 through facebook, msn, and of course, blogs! hahaha. It has been prized as being an intermediary between cultures and the transfer of cultural ideas to other parts of the globe, broadening our perspectives on life and the issues facing not only us but other parts of the world.

But... I'm going to say that technology has done very little in terms of bringing people together. Television, for example, has only subsisted to broaden our worldview and make us very small in our surroundings. News makes us aware of all the bad happening in the world, rarely reporting on the good as to make us scared of everyone we meet and see. It builds up a world in which we are distant from everyone around us. They become these scary "unknowns"-they COULD be terrorists! they COULD be child molesters! they COULD be murderers! AHHHH!!

Likely... not.

If we turned off that silly television of ours and decided to go out and meet people, we might realize that those "scary people" are few and far between. We might learn that people's "stories" (as I like to call them) are quite amazing. What we see as one individual is actually the product of sooooo much history. That person walking by us on the sidewalk has hopes and dreams, maybe he or she has already fulfilled some of them-wouldn't it be interesting to find out which ones? Maybe that women you see waitressing for you is trying to save up money so that she can intern with a development agency over in Africa. Maybe the men whose cleaning up the halls of your residence or office building is in truth a former paster whose just trying to get ends meet. Perhaps the person doing karoke at the local pub is in truth trying to fulfill one of her life goals of conquering a fear of singing in public. The person waiting in line at the bank is an aspiring musician, struggling to make ends meet.

People are amazing beings that inspire and give hope; we just rarely ever tear ourselves away from the false realities we set up to recognize the real ones. So I guess the challenge that I need to face and I hope others will to is to go out and meet people. To discover who they are, why they're like that, what they dream of, how crazy wonderful they are. Let's burst the bubble of individualism and reach out for something better-community!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The Blessing and Curse of Meal Hall

Meal Hall. The very word brings me both joy and shivers.

As I walk down the stairs and see the view of friends, I smile and look forward to the conversations I can expect in front of me. Laying down my coat and purse on an available seat, I go to the salad bar. Lettuce, cucumber, tomato, chick peas, black olives, FETA!! woohoo. I get a glass of water and sit down. On with my meal and with a long conversation with my table buddies. Laughing so hard that I can feel the food I've just eaten get squashed by my over-worked abs, I eat up my salad bite by bite. Onto something else... Potatoes! And I sit back down to my table buddies. We strike up conversation on an awful professor that is called a name I shall not repeat and I try to change the topic. How, do you ask, did I do so? I start singing Backstreet Boys. Yep. That's about it. I get some strange looks and two people leave, although one of my friends decides that he'd like to join in on my fun too. He is indeed a good friend. lol. Now, I move seats since the majority of people in this section seem to have left. Time for ice cream! On to see which flavours are available... vanilla, vanilla, vanilla, butterschotch ripple, which is mostly vanilla, oh! and coffee chocolate flavour. Let's get that. Mmmmmm... I lick at the drops of solid caffeine. Again, a new conversation strikes up about vegetarianism. "Hurray!" I think to myself-although I am smiling very widely as he talks about his reasoning behind his veggie choice-woohooo! And the ice cream is devoured. Hmmmm... what now? Well, I haven't had a glass of milk in a long time. Maybe some of that. Off to the milk station. Skim, of course. I sit back down. By this time, everyone is gone except for my loyal backstreet boy singing friend, lol. We spend time discussing my previous meal hall encounter when I was teaching my friend how to wink, but some guy thought that my winks were directed at him. :S We start laughing again. About an hour and a half has gone by at this point. He offers me part of his cookie and since my milk is gone at this point, some of that too. I ate the first chunk before he got to asking me about the milk, opps. Finally, after almost the entire table has cleared out, even those who arrived about half an hour after me, my friend and I decide that now is about the right time to head back to residence. I have spent an entire hour and half of what could have been studying in meal hall. hahaha.

But I enjoyed every minute of it too. Was it wasted? Perhaps. But it was wasted with friends, and that's what counts. :D

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

The Face by RyanDan

Hey there everyone!

I was listening to this song today and I felt inspired by it, as it seemed really relevant to my walk with Christ and his persistent love for me despite the times I've doubted or I've been confused or just felt really lost. So here it is:

Traveler of the great divides
Vagrant on a path to life

Everyday feels a little closer
To where it is that you're headed for
Given to a hope of so much more

For every time you fall apart
There'll be a soul to guide your journey
But if you choose to turn away
There in the mirror
You'll see my face
You'll see my face

Think you're on this road alone
Looking for a truth untold

Many times you've been close to breaking
Giving up and letting go
Something inside says it's not over

For every time you fall apart
There'll be a soul to guide your journey
But if you choose to turn away
There in the mirror
You'll see my face

And when the world crowds your space
Remember days when noise was silent
Now empty vows, loveless displays
Just a sense of knowing
You'd see my face
You'd see my face


Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Oh Happy Day!

I am more often in a pensive mood rather than happy mood when I write my blogs, so I decided that I would write this one in my joyous mood, lol.

It certainly is a Happy Day, despite the fact that I have so much to do and have mid-terms approaching quicker than lightening. But I feel like singing!! hahaha. What a joy it is to simply know that God is here, to know that I can trust Him with anything! Pure Bliss! It`s better than a bran muffin. Ha! (Psst. Why is it that I compare everything to food? I've got to figure out something better... but it takes so much of the humour out of it! lol)

Rain is beautiful, isn't it? The smell of the earth right after it's soaked up all the wet dew and the fresh clean air that surrounds you. Just breathe, ahhhh.... And then the feel of jumping into a big massive puddle and getting completely soaked after finding out that the puddle is much deeper than you thought. Makes me smile every time! :) And then there's the simple look of nature being cleansed with the drops that have fallen from a beautiful star-lite sky, washing away all the dirt and pollution of the day and leaving nature in a state of reverie. I feel somehow invasive and embarassed walking into such a scene of innocence and renewal. As if I will contaminate the beauty of such a scene.

Oh Happy Day
When Jesus Washed
My Sins Away
Oh Happy Day

Thursday, September 24, 2009

To Those in Pursuit of a Dream

Martin Luther King Junior once gave one of the most quoted and memorable speeches of all time. He said he had a dream. One that he didn't know would ever be realized, one that he didn't see happening at that moment, one that killed him. But he DREAMED. And I believe that this is all that matters.

Because sometimes the issues and disparities in this world seem too big for us to pursue. They seem too huge for us to stand up against. It is as if we are one person on a beach looking at a tidal wave rolling in on top of us. What are we to do?

I say, we are to dream.

Dream of something bigger and better. And then tell the world! Tell them what they should look for, tell them why they should care, tell them what's wrong. Start dreaming. Dream for a better world.

Because it's the least that everyone can do. People demand the freedom of speech for which they have not utilized their freedom of thought. USE IT! DREAM! Dream small, dream big, dream crazy, do anything but refuse to utilize your brain.

And then, when you're an official dreamer, try to pursue it. Look those boulders in the face and carve out something new. Look at your worst enemy and start to cry. Find a parking lot, and start planting flowers. Change your world. And push past the obstacles that come your way cause we can all use a few more dreamers to keep us crazy. Craziness is what makes the world change, makes the world see through new eyes, makes its heart start pumping again.

Martin Luther said that when we have deep faith, "we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith, we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith, we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day."

Let's start dreaming :)

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Ah! University!

Is it possible to go through culture shock going to university? Because lately I've been feeling a bit... out of place? Not so much in the school work sense. I can handle the pressure, but more so in the lifestyle of the university student. Going out to the pub every weekend, getting drunk, "hooking up", boy-crazy girls, sex-crazy boys, and then more drinking, and more crazy behaviour. Freud, you had no need to look further than the university to prove that everything is driven by sex. It's in almost every conversation I have! ugh. My conversations over the past week have included: "Did you see him? He's so cute!" or "Last night was a bomb show. I can barely remember what happened..." or "Wow, a lot of people hooked up last night."

Seriously, I'm feeling a little bit sad about my life here. I hate that to be normal is to be having sex and scoping out the hot guys or getting hammered on alcohol. This is not what I want or who I want to be. Please!!! Right now I feel like screaming, "WAKE ME UP!!! WHAT EVER HAPPENED TO REALITY?? WHEN DID MORALS FLY OUT THE WINDOW? WHY DIDN'T I GET THE MEMO?" AHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!

And I'm feeling sad about all this too. I hate university in one sense, since it constantly gnaws at my faith. God seems so distant here, so far from the minds of anyone I talk to. And for me to discuss God with someone is to make everyone go quiet and nod their heads quietly in "tolerance" of my faith. God is not part of the intellectual, nor the intellectual a part of God. (here, anyways) At least, that's how I feel people think about Christians. Not that it's true (I had a 4.21/4.3 GPA last semester, highest in the entire first year BA department).

I guess what I'm going through is culture shock. But one of a different kind, one I want to fight against, not assimilate with. Is that bad? My morals are precious. To be pure is so precious to me, to have innocence. To be complete when I met God, to have value in his eyes, is of great worth to me.

Ya, and I guess I wonder why I'm here sometimes. I really ask myself that. I crave something more than... whatever this is. And then I remember my friends, my scholarship, my grades, the clubs I'm co-facilitating and in, and I ask myself if I really need to leave or whether I could just... adjust? Hm. I don't like that word. Maybe I should just stay intolerant but continue to love. :S Pray for me!

Monday, August 24, 2009

We're all under the same starry sky

I have faith in God, and faith that humanity can find Him. I have faith that God has the power to change people. He has the power to change the hearts of men and that once we are found in God, we are found in love. And I believe the task of the church is to show this love all over the world to every person they meet.

But I have to say that I'm disappointed in humanity. I'm saddened because somehow, people don't realize how precious they are. I'm sad that somehow, young kids are being denied love from their own parents, that people feel the need to cut themselves, that right now, people are committing suicide because their lives are no longer worth living.

What's happened?! When did people get so selfish and introverted that we no longer even have a purpose for continuing on with our lives. A gentle touch, a kind word, a smile, a laugh, a comforting conversation, a willingness to forgive and forget. Those are only little things we can do to help one another. Anything to let others know that they are noticed, that they're soooo important! I hate (and yes, I'm using that word) the lack of love in our society. And I wish that people would not have self-ambition, but a drive to help others.

Why is it that there's this clear division within society of the rich and the poor? Even geographically speaking, the East end is always poor, the West always rich. Why? Society has created so many divisions that we rarely know how to break them enough to learn that we're all under the same starry sky. And no, I'm not a communist, but I do believe that a person growing up in the west end with a two parents and even enough money to just meet ends meet will have a much better chance of getting a good job in life than a person growing up in the East end with a single parent, often switching between foster homes and parents. And I don't think any political system will technically fix that. I believe the only thing that ever could is God's love, manifested in his church.

So ya, here's the thing. The church, which includes me, needs to get their butts moving. I can't stand to see the Face of Love being dimmed in this world. We need to shine on a hill. Let everyone know that they are precious. That God values them more than they could imagine. Then we'll see a revolution of Love. What a breath of fresh air that'd be!

Thursday, August 13, 2009

I hate Coke ads. (And more philosophical thoughts.)

So I've been thinking lately... Yes. It's true.

Ever feel like God is watered down? Sometimes I feel like people like to sell him, like a bottle of Coca-Cola. "He loves you", "he'll never abandon you", "he'll hold you close and never let go", "he puts the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart".

And I have to laugh here because I find myself doing this all too. And it's not as if God isn't all these things. But he's got WRATH. And I think that's kind of scary for people. Wait, not for people, for me. He's a jealous, angry kind of guy. (We sing these qualities very nicely into our worship music however-"He is jealous for me, Loves like a hurricane, I am tree"- OH NO.) Well, you know what? I think I need to hear about God's wrath. I need to know that God isn't a pansy. lol. I'm half-joking here, half serious.

Cause here's the thing. People need to understand that God isn't a brick. He gets angry when we do things that are wrong. And the entire message of Jesus dying for our sins is nothing without the understanding that Jesus died on the cross to take away God's wrath on the world.

If we think that God is perfect and humanity is sinful, then we know that God cannot possibly be reconciled to humanity because God hates sin. He loves us, he just hates sin. (And yes, there's a HUGE difference) Hence, the Old Testament is filled with bloody sacrifice and fighting and slaughter and war. All this in an attempt to somehow find God in the midst of our own sin. And this is probably the saddest thing to read about. And so, here's where the love story starts to become clear. Jesus comes down to Earth and never sins. God's wrath is not upon him because he is perfect in every way. And then, committing the most selfless act humanity has ever seen, Jesus lets humanity nail his wrists and his ankles into a piece of wood, hang from the wood in front of a mocking crowd, suffocate to death, and have enough love to act as the perfect sacrifice for the people who have done this to him.-Wow. And as the curtain of the temple is torn into two, God is finally able to reconcile himself with humanity. Because by confessing our sins to Jesus, we realize that He acts as our sacrifice, as my sacrifice, to cover the sins that would normally evoke God's wrath, and instead, clean me up, so that I am now under grace and can discover God's love. AMAZING.

There's nothing better than realizing from HOW MUCH we have been redeemed. So yes, please don't water down God. Cause he's pretty cool just the way he is.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Patience is a Virtue. But a Hard one to get.

Michelangelo said that "Genius is eternal patience." I guess I have a lot to work on.

Learning to wait for something is probably one of the hardest things for me. Ever. If I could, I would make everything happen right now, achieve everything I want right now, make things happen, right now. Seriously, I always do things as soon as I think about them. I like results. Fast. But I guess that's really a problem. Cause sometimes patience can teach me so much more than I could ever learn by getting something I want immediately. It's pretty funny actually, and I hate to admit it, but Miley Cyrus got it right-It's the Climb. It's really hard sometimes to just wait for whatever that thing is that you really want. Maybe it's a job, maybe it's a special friend, maybe it's a promotion, maybe a house, maybe even that card you lost a while ago. But there's a journey we need to take when we're searching, and sometimes that journey is what makes us into the person we need to be once we reach the destination. Who would we be without the conversations we had with people, without the connections we've made within a community, without the self-discovery we endure as a single, without the experience of being rejected, without the growth of ourselves within this community of people called humanity.

If only patience was easy though! It's hard for me to see what God really want from me, to see His plan when all I want is a final destination. But I guess the other half of patience is trust. Especially trust in God, realizing that I don't understand everything, but that He'll lovingly guide me along this path called life in the direction which He knows will lead to the best me.

I'll be praying for that in my own life. Peace!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Romance Ruined

So I'm pretty annoyed with the portrayal of "love" in our culture. I'm sick of the stupid Disney movies where the princess acts like a silly little filmsy nothing of a woman, and only has to look pretty and sing some tunes, when BAM! Her prince charming comes along. I'm sick of the damsel in distress movies, the children who decide that they must have a relationship with a person of the opposite sex at 4, the parents who encourage it, and the stupidness of thinking that being single is a curse.

Someone came up to me the other day and was like, "Do you have a man in your life? Cause I mean, it's good to marry young so that you have your life to spend with another person and work out your problems together?" Well thank-you VERY much sir for pointing out how little faith you have in me to handle my OWN problems. I mean, seriously! Sometimes, God uses single people to do things that married people cannot do, and who's to say that maybe God's using my singleness right now to help me do stuff that I couldn't do as a wife. Give me a little credit here, okay? I don't need to be rescued or saved or swept off my feet and I especially don't need to pop out babies anytime soon. I am NINETEEN years old for Pete's sake!

And you know what? I don't think that romance works quite the way the movies show it to. I mean, if some girl was going around singing all by herself in the middle of a secluded forest or what not, I might just think she was a little bit nuts. What happened to relationships where the man liked the woman because of her character? Because she was the person that he could be a better person with than without? Whose to say that a girl with a compassionate heart and independent mind isn't just as attractive as a beauty queen?

I'm happy to be single, at least, most of the time. Sometimes it sucks. But God's teaching me to be patient and rely on Him to provide. I really need to clear my head of all these preconceptions that marriage is a necessary step in life, cause it's really not. Women work today and we don't NEED to get married if we don't want to. I'll get as much love from God and my friends and I would from a husband. Then again, maybe God does have someone for me, in which case, I can't wait to meet him.

But in the meantime, I'm just going to be me. And I kind of like that.


Sunday, June 21, 2009


Every now and then, I pause and take a reality check. Which is kind of funny, because it means that somehow, somewhere, we've lost track of exactly what reality is. But maybe that happens because in some way, our reality is rarely what it appears to be, or even what it should be.

A lot of my friends tell me that when they grow up, they want what has been often classified as the "American Dream." They want to get married, have a big house, a nice car, one (or none) kids, and lots and lots of money. Fairly standard, in fact, I wouldn't be surprised if several of the people reading this wanted the same thing. But I always want to scream at them "WHY???!!!!!" That sounds like the worst and most boring life I can imagine. Because in the end, you are only living for yourself. Our selfish little awful lives where no one talks to their neighbour next door and everyone is dying of loneliness and disconnection. Sometimes I even question the purpose of university, the "institution of the highest forms of knowledge and discovery." I mean, really... how much do you learn there? How to write a paper with the appropriate margins and word choices? How to draw a diagram without error? and this helps me how? not to say that I'm not learning. oh no, my 4.21/4.3 GPA will most certainly get me a job. or maybe not, since it took me two and half months to find a simple summer job since I've gotten back. And I applied for restaurant positions. hahaha. well, anyways, God blessed me with a job better than any restaurant position anyways and I am learning to be patient with His help. anyways, now I'm off track. lol.

All this to say that maybe our pursuit of money is not the reality that would make us most happy. Because in the end, money doesn't talk to you, it doesn't have a shoulder to cry on, it will never love you or hurt you or make you a better person. It will only give you THINGS. And at the end of our lives, I don't think I'd want to be known for the money I spent. I want to be known for the love I gave to the relationships with the people around me. And if that's the case, what should my reality be? Should it be university? Should it be the great job, the perfect family, the never-ending supply of money? Or should it simply be living in such a way that I can love people until it hurts? I choose the later.

The next time you say you want a certain life though, ask yourself why. And then why you answered that way. We pursue certain lives and certain lifestyles because of the things the government and the media tells us. But who says they're right? Decide for yourself :)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

To Passivity and Keats

So I thought I'd share some thought from some of my reading this week. In the book, Jesus for President by Shane Claiborne and Chris Haw, they talk about peacefully approaching our "enemies." They suggest DISARMING others. To refuse to oppose evil on its own terms but instead to transcend both passivity and violence in a third way. I thought I'd pass on a beautiful quote to whoever might read this.

"Evil can be opposed without being mirrored... oppressors can be resisted without being emulated... enemies can be neutralized without being destroyed."

In the three examples Jesus gives in Matthew's account, there are outlined three ways to disarm others. One is to look them into the eyes and let them see your scared humanity, not responding in anger but in humility. In Jesus' times, if you hit someone with your left hand, you could be banished for ten days, so you'd use a backslap to hit someone on the right cheek. A backslap is an insult, degradation, and form of humiliation. By not responding but leaving your right cheek available for the slap, you are showing them exactly how inhuman they are acting.

Second example is that if someone sues you for your clothes, give them your cloak also. In Jesus' times, only the poor were subject to this abuse since they had nothing else to give. By stripping themselves naked, the poor expose the greed of the rich and pour shame onto the one who has caused their nakedness.

The last example was that if a man asked you to walk a mile with them, you should walk two. Under Roman law, a citizen was required to walk a mile with a soldier to help them carry their supplies. To walk a second mile was actually an infraction of the military code. By walking that second mile though, they were saying, "I want to get to know you; You're important to me and I want to get to know you as a friend. I am willing to do more than you ask because I realize that you are a child of God."

These responses are "neither submission nor assault, neither fight nor flight." It is simply a loving call to those who haven't experienced the love of God. Our enemies are simply versions of humanity that have gone a little astray. And since God is love, if we deny someone love, we deny them God. And I'd hate to be the one looking into God's eyes when He finds out that his little child was denied access to his love because of a stuck up Christian.

To change the topic again, I read a beautiful poem by Keats and thought I'd share it with you.

"Bright star, would I were steadfast as thou art--
Not in lone splendour hung aloft the night
And watching, with eternal lids apart
Like nature's patient, sleepless Eremite,
The moving waters at their priestlike task
Of pure ablution round earth's human shores,
Or gazing on the new soft-fallen mask
Of snow upon the mountains and the moors--
No-yet still stedfast, still unchangeable,
Pillow'd upon my fair lady's ripening breast,
To feel for ever its soft fall and swell,
Awake for ever in a sweet unrest,
Still, still to hear her tender-taken breath,
And so live ever-or else swoon to death."

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Comfort isn't very satisfying

I'm bored with my life. I have all this stuff and if I can be completely truthful, I really don't need it. I like it, but I don't need it.

You see, life is full of these things that last close to half an hour and then get boring. I buy a new set of clothes and am happy with them for about... 2 weeks and then get bored with them. I go out all the time because I'm never happy to do something in my own home and always feel like I need to be entertained. Why? I'm pretty sure my life is full of clutter and things that I need to get rid of. It's time for some spring cleaning in my own life. Ugh.

I want to escape the stupid lifestyle that everyone tells me I need to have. Maybe I don't want a lot of money, a nice house, a beautiful car, or some perfectly clean house that looks like its never been lived in. If I had a ratty old shack with a roof that was falling apart at the seams and old used furniture, but at least had friends and family who I loved and who loved me more than anything, I would be the happiest person on Earth.

Jesus was an amazing guy. He loved people sooo much. He lived, he cried, he laughed, and he loved like no person before. not only that, but he did all that with only the sandals on his feet, the clothes on his back, and the small provisions that he picked up along the way. If I can be even a tenth of the person he was, I would say that my life meant something. now, to get rid of the clutter... *sigh

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Looking up

Can i say something? I seem to be having this real difficulty with the church structure. I hate it so much that it frightens me a bit. I greatly dislike a pastor standing at a pulpit and telling me how to see a verse or passage. Some people are naturals at speaking and others need some more work, and I need to know that those needing some more work can be openly buffed and rebutted for their mistakes. It's definitely important to have some authority in a church, but I think more importantly that the church is the body of Christ, where Christ is the head, not the pastor. And the fact that the body is made up of many parts, each just as important as the other, makes me question whether or not having a pastor tell us what is or is not true each week is really the best structure for a church. My church does something called "home church" where the church can meet in small groups and discuss passages together and share insights and ideas together on a one-to-one level, and I love it. There's no authority except that which is there to direct us in where in the bible we are studying so that we can all share our ideas in small group and as a greater group. It's definitely a fun way of doing church.

Another important thing is the way the church reaches out. We are God's hands and feet, ready to love all and serve all... or at least, we should be. It's so important to me that I see this done in my church, where Jesus should be embodied in his lovers. Sometimes the church is so callous to the messes around us that we seclude ourselves and act like we are above them all. Truth is, everyone who walks into a church building is a mess that's wearing a mask. It's just that when everyone is wearing one, no one seems to notice. Ugh, what I wouldn't give for people to start going to church in their grubs and looking like they do before God on any other day. It's not like we only see God sunday mornings. I'm pretty sure the omniscient God sees you when your in your pjs drooling on your pillow too. And it's time that people (like me) started to sing with their heart, not their mouth. And then it's time that people (again like me) got off their high horse, scruffed down into the dirt, and started washing people's feet. We are soooooo loved by God. Everyone of us. Whether you choose to love Him back or not. we should be realizing how special each person is in His eyes and treating them like gold. which brings me into one more conversation I had the other day.

I am a passivist, and I am currently acknowledging my bias so that all are aware before I write this. My dad and I were arguing about whether or not it is morally right to kill someone who is threatening someone else's life. He said yes. I said no. I have many objections to this. Firstly, when Jesus said, "Love your enemies," I'm pretty sure putting a bullet through their head was not included in this "love." Secondly, who am I to judge whether someone lives or dies? I am human and make mistakes like any other person; I certainly hope that someone wouldn't sentence me to hell for the rest of eternity because they thought it'd be in my best interests. Thirdly, greater love has no man than this: to lay down his life for his friends. Jesus gave me the ultimate example. He could've stopped anyone from killing him at any time but he kept with it. He was abandoned by everyone he ever loved. His disciple and friend of three years denied ever knowing him. His followers didn't bother telling people that they knew him. He was alone in the world and sad, but he died for no reason at all because he loved them. He split the temple curtain in two, splitting the barrier and bringing God into the realm of man. That's powerful love. Can I justifiably kill one of the people that he loved to this extent? Do I have any more right to this love than them? I guess that's your choice, though the answer seems plain to me.

Well, it's way past my bedtime.
Over and out.

Friday, May 8, 2009

In the Insanity of Life

Bonjour to whoever finds this blog. I don't expect anyone to read this, but you never know. Perhaps someday I will be writing this for more than myself :D I'm dreaming big here. lol.

well, I am home. That's quite the word, eh?--home. Like everything is comfortable and familiar in that place. You have friends, you have a place to go back to and live in, you have a setting in which you can easily immerse yourself in without feeling nervous. I noticed I'm now referring to university as home too. Good sign, I think.

So my first week back has been an adventure for sure. I'm discovering a little bit about how I've changed and how this "home" of mine has too. My high school friends that have moved onto university all got together the other day and it was interesting to note both how somethings never change and how others... do. Take my friends Lara and Alex for example. Everytime I meet them, we click. Like we've never even been separated. We fall back into place wherever we left off. And yet, things change. Actually, I'm pretty sure I've changed. It's weird trying to mesh my way back into Ontario and find things to talk about when I've been in a completely different place for three months. Lara was shocked at me when I agreed to go along with some rather sneaky cheating techniques. bahahahaha. we had some good laughs though, and definitely still lost to everyone there. lol. we are quite the team. :)

And then I was out the other day with some old friends from the youth group and felt so out of place. There are some budding couples in our tight-knit group now, and it was weird to be sitting there with two couples, and then me and my guy friend. Not that couples are bad in any way at all; it's nice to see "young love" (although I have to admit to feeling a tad bit jealous that I am quite single). It's just that I am very out of the loop and there are some couples of which I know one person much better than the other and so it can be a little awkward. Plus, two singles of the opposite sex plus two couples=awkward situation, especially if you only want to be friends with the single friend. Anywho, I ended up sneaking off a little bit later, lol. Don't get me wrong, I still love all of them, I'm just... not quite adjusted to everything that's been going on while I've been gone.

And then I've had some rather exhilerating days. Hahaha. Maybe not quite... exhilerating. Reading, jogging, eating, sleeping, or not sleeping because my dad is snoring so loudly I can hear him through the vents, bahaha. Actually that night was fun. I slept like... 3 hours, woke up at 5:15 am and then decided, "What the heck? I'm not sleeping. Why not go for a jog?" So I went for a run on 3 hours sleep at 5:30 in the morning. lolol. Random, but good fun. You should try it sometime. Then there was a day of laziness. A phone call, some reading, some eating, some facebooking, lol, what a joke facebook is. Like my computer profile and my 500 friends makes me popular. lol. It's good times though, I suppose. Can be a bit stupid though too. Anywho, that night was home church with the Meeting House and that has probably been the highlight of my week. I met up with my very rocking friend, Daniel Best who is D-Best, and just came back from Nicaragua and brought many beautiful photos and stories with him. And there was some really good discussion time which made me think very hard about some important stuff. Wow, that sentence was vague. Okay, to be more specific, the group was talking about more than the weather and saying "How are you?" "Oh! I'm good, and you?" "Oh, I'm good too." Like some good old thinking stuff about God and New Age beliefs and our place in the world. lol. Got to love those thinking questions. and then there was some amazing praising going on with the guitar and some AMAZING vocals. I have to say that the Kitty Murry home church has some rockin voices! I was shocked. felt good to worship Jesus with those people. and not only that, it felt real. They really made it seem like they were praising God, not the walls. It was beautiful.

Anywho, it is getting on into the night and I should definitely be trying to catch up on some Zs. Until later!

Saturday, April 25, 2009


After two hours and twenty minutes of sitting and waiting, I arrived back into the Hamilton airport and was greeted with the open arms of my dad and sister who so kindly helped me with my VERY heavy luggage. Well, at least what came through after the extra hour of waiting due to red alert thunderstorm activity. One bag is currently lost somewhere between Moncton and Calgary, and I am waiting for a call to tell me that all is good for me to come and pick it up. Let's hope that all does go well.

Other than that, it was sooo good to come home, get in the door of my rather shabby under-construction hallway (and living room and bedroom and basement...), hear the squeaking of my good friend Kiwi the parrot and the purring of my cat Pebbles, and of course, get many more warm hugs from my fabulous brother Myles and my lovely mother. Coming home is strange because the moment you walk in the door, it's like you never even left. You know where everything is, you know who everyone is, and you can freely walk around and lounge around as you please. No expectations except to be a part of your family. And I can't wait to see my friends and give them the biggest hugs yet and spend the longest summer of my life having some wild memories and adventures. I cannot wait for a sunny day to go for a hike, swim, play, or simply lounge about in the yard and tan. Hurray! Plus... summer reading!!! can't wait! I love digging into the plots, adventures, and mishaps of these characters. I love imagining that I am part of the story too, or putting myself into the life of one of the characters and participating in the story myself. I was introduced to metafiction/post-modernism in my english class, and I have firmly decided that it is my favourite kind of writing yet. I can't wait to look into some good metafiction authors like Stoppard and Barth. I was watching the Monty Python and the Quest for the Holy Grail and totally started analyzing it and looking at the tyranny of the author/director and the awareness of the movie as a movie. It made me quite content. :) Well, it's getting late here. til later!

Shall I compare thee to a summer's day?
Thou art more lovely and more temperate.
Rough winds do shake the darling buds of May,
And summer's lease hath all too short a date.
Sometime too hot the eye of heaven shines,
And often is his gold complexion dimm'd;
And every fair from fair sometime declines,
By chance or nature's changing course untrimm'd;
But thy eternal summer shall not fade
Nor lose possession of that fair thou ow'st;
Nor shall Death brag thou wander'st in his shade,
When in eternal lines to time thou grow'st:
So long as men can breathe or eyes can see,
So long lives this, and this gives life to thee.

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Exam Time

So as I'm writing this, there are about ten cars downstairs here to pick up students who have finished writing all of their exams and are happily going home, and here I am, sitting in my depressed state, thinking that I still have another three to write before I'm all done. French and English are all finished and both went decently, although who really knows. Tuesday is Human Geography, Wednesday is Economics, and Thursday is Classics. Pretty exciting stuff... not. Exams are horrible. Ugh.

Still, I have only one week before I can see the beautiful faces of my family again. I am most DEFINITELY ready for summer! No more of that white stuff PLEASE. I think I will cry if there is another snow storm in April. Well, at least there's four months of break! Hurray! Sunshine, swimming, friends, parties, flowers, yay!

And yet, I think that I will desperately miss university after about two weeks of being home. My absolutely wonderful friends will stay over here in the Maritimes while I return by my lonesome back to the land of steel workers and city life-Ontario. :( I have some very random and very memorable adventures in residence (except during quiet hours...), and it'll be so sad to not see those people I shared them with. I'll miss them tons over the next four months. Guess I'll be writing lots of letters and facebook messages.

Anywho, I suppose I should get back to studying!

"All the world's a stage,
And all the men and women merely players;
They have their exits and their entrances,
And one man in his time plays many parts,
His acts being seven ages."