Monday, November 5, 2012

The Night Before America Changes

It is the night before the election. The fate of America comes down to tomorrow. This may be a moment I recall in the future to my children. Sitting on my couch, feeling the vibrations of my cat's pur through my legs as she lies on my lap- without the slightest understanding of this moment. I'm typing on my open blogger page, not really knowing what to write...or even think. It is the night before America changes- REALLY changes. For better? For worse? Funny that although I am pretty involved and passionate about politics justice, freedom, and this Nation under God...I have no motivation to write some big poilitcal piece promoting the canidate I hope wins...I guess I'm just sick. Sick of all the politics. It's all I have heard about and discussed about for the last six months. Some of what I heard made my heart pound with enthusiasm, while seemingly more often making my heart twist with frustration and at times- yes, I'll admit- anger. Some of those discussions were of an agreeing irritation- others made me want to slam my head into a prevent myself from slamming theirs into a wall. Why am I not writing anything political? Why am I sitting here writing about what to write? Maybe I'm just too tired to dig up information and articles and evidence, and too tired to raise my blood pressure. Maybe I've realized that after all the arguing, fighting, debating, being exasperated from biased media coverage, trying to get through the thick-skulls of some selfish idiots, and worrying about what's to just a waste of time. God is in control. He has plans which we don't know. While I'm praying for a president who will keep this one nation- one nation under God, He may have a different plan. Who knows. This may be the night before the begining of the next great persecution.

I have not lost hope, but I am no longer relying on it.
I now rely on trust.

In God We Trust.


Monday, September 17, 2012

Black Ice

I wrote this on a long car ride during a blizzard. Cars were flipped over in the ditches about every ten yards. It was scary, but I know God was watching over us. Because of our destination, it was an emotional journey for me. And as I saw the wrecked cars pass by through my window, this is what I thought.

I’m driving on an icy road

In the dark, cold night.

Cars upside-down and in ditches

To my left and to my right.

I must drive cautiously and slowly

So I do not pay the price

For not being aware

Of the misleading black ice.

And these other cars,

I have no doubt,

Will be much more careful

After being saved from their spin-out.

This road is my life,

My temptations

-the ice.

Others are not careful

And lose control,

And into the ditches and depression

They roll.

They have to sit there

Until they call

On the One Who can save them

When they fall.

I must focus on the road

And not go too fast,

Because I never know

When I’ll be driving for my last.


Thursday, September 13, 2012


[This was supposed to be posted on Tuesday, but I was having internet problems.]

Where we were on that day eleven years ago, is something we shall NEVER FORGET.

I was standing below the phone, facing the wall, which bore the poster of the Pledge of Allegiance. I tried to say the words as my brother did- though I was a syllable behind- and I concentrated on the letters of that page, trying to match the words I heard with the symbols I saw, all while wondering why we were "invisible" under God.

*BRRRIIIING* The phone rang.

"Hello?" Mom answered.

I can't recall her vocal response, but I do remember her face. It was stiff. Her hands trembled as she held the phone. My brother and I stood looking up at her, anticipating what the other half of the conversation could possibly be.

She eventually hung up the phone and turned to look down at us.
"Two airplanes crashed into the Twin Towers intentionally."
She shook.
I didn't quite understand. But what I did understand was that my mom and dad were frightened. My protectors-who weren't even afraid of monsters or robbers-were afraid now. They were afraid of this.
I may not have known exactly why- but I knew that I was scared too.


Wednesday, June 13, 2012

I See His Blood upon the Rose

I see his blood upon the rose,
and in the stars the glory of his eyes,
His body gleams amid eternal snows,
His tears fall from the skies.

I see his face in every flower;
The thunder and the singing of the birds
Are but his voice-and carven by his power
Rocks are his written words.

All pathways by his feet are worn
His strong heart stirs the ever-beating see,
His crown of thorns is twined with every thorn,
His cross is every tree.

~Joseph Mary Plunkett

 How I wish I could be more like the author of this poem. Too often do I pass by a rose, ignore the sky, unappreciate the snow, get frustrated by rain...we should see the Author, the Artist, the all His work. Everyday, we are given enough to remind us of His passion and sacrifice.

The precious red rose, should remind us of His precious red blood. The stars shine like His eyes, and His body radiates, full of purity, like the pure white snow.
The rain...the tears of God.

The faces of flowers, the new life they bring every spring, is like the face of Christ. Two very different sounds, "thunder and singing of the birds/ Are but His voice" He is all-powerful, yet gentle- He is meek.
"and carven by His power/ Rocks are His written words."
He is the solid Rock upon which we aim to build our house, our foundation for our Church. His ten commandments are carved into stone.

"All pathways by His feet are worn"
Jesus has traveled every road, and has been on every journey. We carry Him with us, He walks beside us. He is our Guide, the One Who never gets lost. He knows where each path leads, He knows what lies ahead. Lord, you know the path on which I walk...please guide my feet.

"His strong heart stirs the ever-beating sea"
The power of God keeps the universe in motion. The rythym of collapsing waves is like His strong heart beat. His strong beat shakes the earth, and stirs the sea.

"His crown of thorns is twined with every thorn"
This line goes beyond merely being reminded of his crown when seeing thorns. Every hardship and thorn we suffer, is twined with His thorns. His crown of thorns is twined and weaved of our thorns and pain, which He bears upon His sacred head.

"His cross is every tree"

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Tortoise and I

Sooo...I've been a lazy blogger again (but busy person)...I have some post ideas brewing like my coffee, but I have a paper I'm working on at the moment (which may double as a post if I end up liking it) so I'm going to go to my file of last year literature assignments and scrounge up something to pass as remotely interesting...

This was a little assignment of re-writing The Tortoise and The Hare in first person...that's all I got...
Tortoise and Hare 1st person

It was a warm sunny day. I felt the sun beating down on me, the fresh air moving through me, and my adrenaline rising in me. I wanted to race. I was an undefeated champion. I choke on the word ‘was’, for although I am prideful, I am not dishonest. I was surrounded by many of the meadow dwellers, the Raccoon, the Fox, Mr. and Mrs. Squirrel, all my little niece and nephew bunnies, and a few other faces which I wasn’t quite acquainted with. I shared with them my legends of triumph, while assessing each member of my audience as a potential opponent, or a potential threat. Soon after slight hesitation about the fox’s athletic abilities, I convinced myself that I should not be worried. After all, I am a champion. I then offered a competition, “I have never been beaten,” I announced, “when I go full speed. I challenge anyone here to race with me.”

                “I accept your challenge.” I heard from a meek voice. I was a bit nervous and perplexed, for this quiet yet confident voice seemed to come from the Fox. But I soon was relieved, although further surprised, when the fox stepped aside, and revealed an old Tortoise as the owner of my future opponent’s voice. After the brief moment of shock, and staring at my volunteering competitor who was undeniably no match, I burst out into laughter, “That is a good joke! I could dance around you all the way!” Then that dumb, old tortoise had the audacity to say to me, “Keep your boasting till you’ve won. Shall we race?” That was it. If that over-sized turtle wanted to challenge me, then so be it. “It’s not like I could possibly lose,” I said to myself, “I’ll show that tortoise.”

                A course was planned out, and I took my place at the starting line, while waiting for the tortoise to join me. I rolled my eyes. As the fox raised the branched and yelled, “GO!”, my strong hind legs launched me through the air and off to a remarkable start. “Too bad I don’t even need this incredible lead,” I speculated as I sprinted, “that sluggish tortoise is probably still plodding along back there. I might as well take a brief break, since I can already see the finish line in the distance.” I laid my handsome, furry self in the long, cool, green grass. “How nice it is to relax.” I sighed. When I woke up refreshed and ready to finish, I rubbed my eyes, and faced the finish line. I couldn’t believe it! Just short of the finish line was the tortoise! I shot off as if dynamite had just exploded underneath me. “He can’t win! He can’t!” My mind yelled, my feet flew, my heart raced, my lungs starved. I tumbled past the finish line. I was greeted by cheering mobs. I thought, “I did it!  and proceeded to take my bow, but I was interrupted by clamorous chants of “TORTOISE! TORTOISE! TORTOISE!” My arms lowered, jaw dropped, and heart sank. I, the swiftest, had been defeated by the slowest.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Natural Law/Morality, C.S. Lewis, Blame...

I've been reading some works masterpieces of C.S. Lewis (yes, he did write more than Narnia...really hoping you knew that...) for religion class, and am just...loving it.

Below are some thoughts and reflections which came to my head (and therefore in pen to margins and empty spaces in between his insights) while reading Right and Wrong as a Clue to The Meaning of The Universe [Book I, from The Case for Christianity of Mere Christianity by C.S. Lewis].

Here is a link to the book:

Once on the pdf, click the link to "Book I. Right and Wrong..." OR put "11" in the page box on the top bar, next to the two blue arrows.
It may seem like a lot to read, but I promise you, it isn't. You only really need read the first chapter, page 11 to 13. But I HIGHLY recommend reading to the end of Chapter 4 (page 21). (I'm not focusing on chapter 5, though by all means feel free to keep reading).

Do I really think you'll click the link and read it? Am I just going to assume you didn't and give an explanation as I go? no. [at least I am going to try not to.] Why? because I want you to read it!! I absolutely "couldn't say it better myself" than C.S. Lewis (of course)...and even if I gave you a summary of what he was saying, it would give it no justice and you would miss sooo much.
I DARE YOU. For once- don't click the little 'x', don't minimize, don't 'favorite' for later...go make some tea, and read it. [hey, you don't even have to search for it, or get it from your library- it's ALL RIGHT THERE!]

I will be writing this assuming that you HAVE read it.
As proof, I'd be ecstatic to find some comments and/or discussion regarding this, in the comments section. Not only because I often wonder if my audience is imaginary...or just those Russians and Germans who always come up in my stats (if you Russians are really reading this: Вы удивительным. пойти съесть печенье. Germans: Sie sind genial. essen ein Stück Kuchen. To my new French friends: vous aussi êtes génial. aller manger un témoin. and to my homeschool friends: te stupenda es. Nescio quomodo dicere "cookie" in latinae. Sed bonum cibum edi.)
[^got distracted there...i admit it]
So please go read it and start/join some conversation...I'm missing The Big Bang Theory re-runs to write this!

Everybody wants to be "good" or more so "decent" (with the exception of your average phsycopath-criminal). This decency is driven by a vast variety of motivations over the  diversity of individual characters. For many it is to be liked, accepted, to earn respect/job/money, and for some it is to please God.

We can't stand being accused of being "bad" or "wrong" and we try to justify our actions if ever challenged on their 'decency' or 'correctness.'

Now, the Natural Law -or standard which everyone tries to meet, point out when others' actions do not meet, and justify why some questionable actions do meet- is no longer a definite line between black and white. The two are getting incredibly smudged, and the gray area is becoming larger and larger.

I picture this as a wooden table with a deep, straight line carved right down the middle. On one half of the line, the table is covered in black sand. On the other half of the line, the table is covered in white sand. Some people and actions begin to cross the line, dragging their feet in the sand as they cross. Some on the white side may drag into the black, which confuses both sides, and all the sudden they are pushing and shoving where behaviors lie on the entire table [either picture a ginormous table, or little army-figure-sized people]. The definite carved line still exist, but no one can clearly see the line since it is all covered with the gray sand, caused by the confusion between where each grain of black sand and each grain of white sand belongs.
[That is the analogy that comes to my mind, though I know there are probably 100 easier and better ways to visualize it... if you have one- share your analogy in the comments! ...not that i'm, uhh, desperate for comments or anything...*cough*
No, but seriously, I am really interested in other analogies for this.]

SO. Most aim to stay within and keep this Natural Law, whether or not they consciously acknowledge its existence.
But none of us truly keep it. We all, of course, get lost in all the gray, and sometimes even deliberately step into that black. But when we do, we are so quick to make excuses as to why we broke that line of Natural Law, or why under certain circumstances we weren't really breaking the line...

If something gos wrong, its because of the weather, lack of sleep, so-and-so was late, couldn't find your shoes...

But if something goes right- we don't "blame" others (well, sometimes we thank others and give them credit, but I'm guessing for most of us...majority of the time we don't think of it) we simply take the glory for it.

And when we can't blame another human being, who do we blame? We blame God (again, I'm using 'we' in a general sense...if you make a conscience effort not to- *high-five*) So many people claim they don't believe in God until- cancer, death, poverty, bad grades, break-up, job loss...
Now...where was God? Why did He do this to me? [see suffering.]

But when something goes well, it's "only because of my hard work" and "who needs God, I can handle this on my own."

And how about the times we don't even know about? Perhaps God didn't let something happen. Perhaps in your rush to get to that doctor's appointment (you know, because you couldn't find your keys, and traffic was just horrendous...) God deflected that car you cut off (well...he wasn't paying attention...the light was green) ...but how would you know? It's like the story of the little boy learning to walk with his father. The father saw some stones his young son would trip on, and so he -able to see farther (and further) down the path than his son- walked a little farther and moved them.
Does the father say, "Oh, look what I did! I moved those stones. You would have tripped and fallen if I hadn't." No. He just quietly moves them.

But we ask- what about the times he didn't move the stones? Jesus fell three times. [<LazyBloggerMe: not going to expand on that. mentioning Jesus should be sufficient for you to chew on. expand yourself.]

Perhaps the Father saw further down the road, something far worse than the stone you tripped on, or a struggle you endured. Perhaps while you endured that struggle, or frustration, or were being delayed and kept safe from something else. Such as the man who was very late for work one day, stuck in horrible traffic, sirens going all around, questioning why God let him be so late...only to see the sky be swallowed by thick black clouds, and realize that the tower his office was in- was collapsing to the ground. That September morning, he rushed just like any other late morning...

But most times, we don't see what God protected us from. He doesn't point it out to us. He just quietly protects us from it, while we accuse Him for leaving us, and have the audacity to tell him our little stones and delays are pointless.

Last Chance for Onion Rings

So I just came across this literature assignment I did last year. We were supposed to write in a somewhat crowded area, what we were experiencing and sensing...seeing/smelling/hearing/feeling...etc. I had forgotten about the assignment so that's why it's at a fish fry.

Mainly I'm posting this because I felt-
  1. that I needed to post something
  2. lazy.
so I was trying to scrounge up something from my computer that could pass for remotely interesting...

---(over a year ago...)

The laughing of the knights, the sizzling of the fryers, the cool breeze carrying the distinct scent of cod to my nose while throwing my recently brushed hair across my face as I briskly made my way up the wide cement path to the building. I had two things on my mind: I am slightly late and onion rings. My exhausted feet were walking on rocks, and yelling at me to sit down after all the previous walking at the mall we did. Good thing I’m a supervisor* today. No need to do much walking. I felt pressure on either side of my eyes. Why didn’t I take an ibuprofen for this headache? I caught sight of my brother’s dark brown hair, and caught sound of his laugh near the kitchen.

Letting him know I was here, I approached him, whetted my lips, and requested those delicious, warm, fried, craved onion rings. They were gone. With disappointment of not tasting what I had longed for the past two weeks, I reluctantly worked my way around the large round tables, to the back of the dining hall. I seated myself at the cluttered manager’s table, while being greeted by Caron’s kind smile. I, along with three other teen managers, began scribbling and scratching out names, while puzzling how to resolve the situation of four scheduled, needed, but absent, volunteers. The piano of Beethoven, or was it Bach’s? quietly, yet noticeably, sang through the speakers and into the background of voices.

 I looked up to anything but the cure to my headache, to see a blinding sweatshirt. Whoa! I squinted my eyes. Recognizing the sweatshirt which I had been greeted by earlier that morning at physics, I swiftly stood up and gave the glowing figure a hug. “Emmie!” I excitedly welcomed my friend whom I had not seen for hours.

 The fried fish was finally finished. Standing in line with friends, I reached down for a tray while listening to Jordan sarcastically demand I use one. Ewww! My left thumb felt a sticky, putty substance. I looked down to find a small, white, wad of gum on my plastic, green, marble-patterned cookie-sheet, which may have actually been popular fifty-some years ago. I reached for the napkins, handing one to Emily, and keeping four of the square paper cloths for myself. “Baked or fried?” my ears observed the friendly voice of the knight. Unhealthy fried, of course. “One fried, please, and some of those famous, homemade chips.” Passing the mushy, green broccoli, my taste buds begged for the refreshing, red coca-cola that was sweating from its frozen state. Balancing my meal on my unclean tray, I returned to the crowded managers’ table.

CRUNCH! My crispy chips were salty. POP FIZZZ I sipped my carbonated drink. Taking a bite of the freshly fried fish, my eyes glanced onto the floor beside my chair, where I saw my homeschooled friend’s notebook. SIGH, well isn’t that a surprise, I completely forgot about my notebook and literature project. With permission, an empty page waiting to be scribbled upon was torn out of the green notebook, and I wrapped my fingers around the coveted mechanical pencil. I see fish, taste fish, smell fish, hear fish…just kidding. A line of hungry diners began to form at the front of the dining hall near the kitchen. My finger pressed the round button on my cell phone which read OK, as I checked the time. 4:02pm. The crowd is getting here, but where are the other volunteers?

 I lifted my face to see the face of a second friend, with partially red hair, carrying two large containers, one which was labeled ‘sour cream’. I didn’t know Alaina was coming. As she approached, the distinct aroma of vinegar encountered my nose, and it was apparent the misleading plastic jars held pickles. My neon companion welcomed our colorful companion. Alaina was disappointed. Just as the crispy onion rings disappeared without me, she had been on a fruitless search for nachos.

                 During the dinner, I waited on a familiar, friendly, elderly couple, and was humbled from my ‘supervisor’ position, to cleaning filthy trays similar to the ones I had been so disgusted with earlier. I did these simple tasks until the temporary restaurant was closed for the night, and the time had come to prepare soapy water, assign cleaning jobs to countless number of questioning volunteers, and scrub sticky tables. My sore hands held the distinguishing scent of bleach, which contributed to my returning headache, along with the swarming youth whom finally could release their three-hour bottled-up energy.

I positioned myself at the front of the hall, observing the entire room. Most of everyone had worked efficiently, and the dining room duties were completed. I reached up and pulled off my mandatory, gray baseball cap. Although I could feel the horror my hair displayed, after being bound by a band and shoved under the hat, it could finally relax on my shoulders. That was it. The last fish dinner had been finished. With a bulky box of supplies in my arms, my body pushed against the glass doors of the building, my feet walked down the same cement path I traveled earlier, my eyes focused on the car I could rest in, and my nose indulged in the fresh air. I fell into the ‘shotgun’ seat, and turned up “I’m Comin’ Home” on the radio. I’ll have to get my onion rings next year.

*we have a volunteer system with managers and supervisors. if you didn't figure that out yet.

sad thing is...I totally forgot about the onion rings this year until the very last fish dinner (again) when a knight (of Columbus...not in shining armor. too bad. that'd be really cool to have fish made by tin men with swords.) walked out of the kitchen with a plate...bearing... THE LAST ONION RING!!

...oooh...I'm totally getting a "Lord of the Onion Rings" idea... no. I really shouldn't even go there.

Sunday, April 22, 2012


So yesterday our church welcomed 20 members to be adults in the I thought I'd dig up an old post I wrote after I was confirmed (back when I had a yahoo! blog...which...really didn't qualify as a 'blog').

5/1/11 12:47am
  • {} = ADD interruption

    Today, I was confirmed. I confirmed my faith, I confirmed my promise to willingly grow in my faith on my own, and in doing so, I was confirmed an adult in the Church. Msgr. Zens {his name reminds me of some short, little, purple, furry dude who lives in a mountain. I know my ADD is getting this from something...} anyways, each of his homilies for confirmation, he has a different word to focus on. The word he chose today was "Conversation". perfect word for the girl who loves to talk. {It also makes me think of converse shoes, but that isn't important right now} ...well honestly, and surprisingly, I do not have too much to comment on about the word...not much conversation about conversation lol.
    Maybe I'm just tired...I just noticed the time maybe tomorrow I will write about being on fire, or Joan of Arc...hmm or a combination of that since she was burned...
kay, sorry...admittedly that was pretty much about feeling uninspired...but it was what I wrote while trying to fall asleep after my confirmation day.
I'll post the next night since it's a little more...inspired...I suppose...

5/2/11 10:05pm
{} = ADD interruption
Okay, so I feel like a complete idiot for not making this connection about Confirmation and Pentecost sooner.
So anyways, I thought I'd type out all the connections I found, and maybe if you have something to add, leave a comment (lol you as in someone of my imaginary audience...or one of my four connections of family who doesn't have time to waste reading this... *"loser" smiley* -meh lol)
Okay, so Confirmation is the beginning of a person's adult life in the church. Basically, in my opinion (I do need to add that here since I am not the church), your Catholic faith truly starts at Confirmation, since at that point you are at the age of reason, and you agree, and fully believe the Church's teachings, and pledge to be responsible, continue, and follow, the Catholic faith. In the case of Pentecost, this was the st- {spider just ran across my keyboard...was somewhere in my bed. Finally found it, then realized I had no Kleenex except...well I wont go into the hassle of killing it, but it took me about 8 minutes to kill this darn thing, then I looked up and saw two more spiders on the wall. I am being intruded upon by spiders...*sigh* not the first time...}
ANYWAYYS {where was I?} oh yeah, okay, so Pentecost was the beginning of the Catholic Faith herself. Just as Confirmation is the beginning of each individual following their Catholic Faith. So that is my first, overall comparison.

Second, Pentecost was when the disciples and followers were scared that they would be persecuted and/or killed, so they hid by themselves in the room. This is very often the state which most of us are before Confirmation. We, the disciples, keep to ourselves about our faith. We are scared of how others will judge, and persecute us. So we hide it, out of fear.
Now for the most obvious relation, while the disciples were hiding in the upper room, the Holy Spirit descended in tongues of fire to each disciple. From that point on, they left the sheltered room, and went out into the world, spreading God's Word. They were not scared, they were bold. That had strength now to not be afraid to share God's News. Nothing hindered their faith spreading, not even different languages. Before, they were afraid to speak, now they could reach to all in a way each person could understand. Before, they hid in a room, now they went throughout the world preaching to those who needed to hear it. Now, Confirmation is the exact same. As mentioned previously, prior to being confirmed, we are often to scared of our peers' opinions and persecutions to speak out about our Faith. During Confirmation, the Holy Spirit descends into each of God's disciples (us), putting us on Fire for God, giving us courage and strength to stand up for our Faith, opening our mouths that we can proclaim and preach our Faith without fear, coming out of our hiding places, and going into the world. Many times people even start speaking tongues when the Holy Spirit descends into them, just as the disciples did 2000some years ago.
{I have this annoying idea that there has to be some connection with the room being the upper room...its annoying because the inspiration is only kindling, but I have no complete thought on it...}
So the disciples back then, go out and convert others to Christianity, not hiding or being afraid of persecutions because they are filled with the Holy Spirit, just as we become after true Confirmation.
I say "true" Confirmation, because perhaps not everyone has this 'effect' after being confirmed {here is my opinion again, rather than my 'observation'...}. But it does make sense as to why some may not have that 'fire' for God and boldly evangelize after their Confirmation, if it wasn't their decision. If the person was truly only going along to please their parents, most likely they would not have that same enthusiasm for the faith. But if they whole-heartily, wanted and believed their faith, fully knowing and understanding the meaning of Confirmation, then they undoubtedly receive that gift of the Holy Spirit, with its fire, courage...everything...
[I -the current 'I'- want to insert here, that even if a confirmandi didn't feel that 'fire' for God, that does not in any way mean that it wasn't his/her decision or that he/she didn't whole-heartily believe their faith... it's only a scenario for some of the ...not a generalization. Okay, I just wanted to add that...go back in your time machine to about a year-ago-me]
Next I want to examine the word 'Confirmation'. "the state of being confirmed" if we further define 'confirm' we get:
"to establish the truth, accuracy, validity, or genuineness of" Confirmation establishes, the truth, accuracy, validity, and genuineness of
The OneTrue Faith.
Along with that definition, Confirmation comes from the Latin verb "confirmo" meaning "to strengthen; to declare; to confirm". It is quite apparent that each of those translations play a role in confirmation. Strengthening your faith, declaring your faith, and confirming your faith.

Monday, April 16, 2012

I Can Not Tolerate Tolerance.

PLEASE don't pass this post just because it looks really long. I took the time to write it, so you can take the much much less time to read it (yep. that's where I'm at.) plus...I even did research!
I probably could cut out a lot of ramblings or 'fat' in the beginning of here as I worked through a scattered mind, but some people have told me it's somewhat entertaining sooo...I'll just use that as an excuse to not have to edit it out and reconnect the thoughts. (it's really not that long, btw, just took me a long time to write).
kay, that's it. [I'm posting this late, I actually wrote it Friday night].

Ugh. I don't even know where to start. Let me pray and then come back to the keys...maybe I can turn my frustration into some sense. *prays that God keeps my mind clear and inspired, and that all tangents have a purpose, and have nothing to do with pistachios or rhyming. amen* I'm back.

Okay sooo...I'll start this post with the words which I start many posts: I don't even know where to start.
[lol, I totally just realized I already wrote those exact words in my first line up there.]
Anyways, so i guess I'll just start where my mind is at the moment. My family along with some friends just saw the movie Monumental, and then discussed it over some warm fresh cookies.

"Monumental is the story of America's beginnings. Presented, produced, and starring Kirk Cameron, the 90-minute true story follows this father of six across Europe and the U.S. as he seeks to discover America's true "national treasure" -- the people, places, and principles that made America the freest, most prosperous and generous nation the world has ever known. "
(it won't let me post it as a video)
This post isn't directly about the movie, but some of the ideas are inspired from our discussion afterwords.

Truth, tolerance, and guilt.

Before I jump to tolerance, I want to discuss truth. Let's first vent a little about the idiocy behind 'relatism' and make sure you understand the idiocy.
 Let's define it:

"The doctrine that no ideas or beliefs are universally true but that all are, instead, 'relative'that is, their validity depends on the circumstances in which they are applied. "[1]
"no ideas are true and that's the truth." Confuzzled?
I'd also like to question the words "validity depends". You're most likely sitting in a chair. [I'm taking this explanation example from "Prove It!: God" ...I tried being more original and coming up with my own...but I started talking about the digital VT-100 and decided to backspace and try 'simple' for a change.] Anyways. The truth is you're sitting in a chair no matter what 'circumstances' you 'apply' it to. [that is of course, unless you are sitting in/on your bed, the floor, a beanbag, a swing, a box, an exercise ball, a spring animal, a pillow, a bike, the grass, a boflex, rocking horse, or a wagon, in which case I ask that you move yourself to a chair, so the previous statement can (not may, but can) be true.] Have you moved? Okay, now let's say that again. The truth is that you are sitting in a chair, right? It doesn't matter if it is raining. It doesn't matter if you are eating pistac- almonds. It doesn't matter if you have a Buddhist friend next to you. You are sitting in a chair. Okay, glad we got that down. That's objective. I think most of us know the difference between 'objective' and 'subjective' statements. And I suppose I could even have just used the example from the 2nd grade work books, when you had to differentiate between fact and opinion. But I didn't think of that until now, and in the words of Pilate- I have written what I have written.
[*sigh* I'm taking waaayyyy to long to get to my point. and I hope you have not abandoned taking me seriously, because I do {believe it or not} have a point.]
SO. Back to the chair (thought I dropped it?). You may say that your chair is the most comfortable, most beautiful chair to ever have existed. But your Buddhist friend thinks it is horrid. [here is where 'most people' would follow with some "non-racist" "don't want to offend" "politically correct" comment, about how they don't have a problem with Buddhist and they just randomly wrote that and blah blah blah. which...I don't...have a particular 'problem' with them (the people) and I did just randomly write that....but I don't make "political apologies" kay? good.]
Anyways, so your friend disagrees and believes the chair is hideous and uncomfortable. Is one of you "right"? Whose belief is "truth"? Okay, well that's subjective.
But while your friend can say, "that chair is uglier than an old sphinx cat" he may not (see, now I use 'may') say in truth "that is not a chair." No matter how much he believes it is not- the chair is. and that's the truth.
Okay, I REALLY need to move on to my point, and I really hope I haven't lost you. Basically- you can't be sitting on a chair - AND- not sitting on a chair- at the same time. Truth is truth, and it's validity doesn't "depend" on circumstances.
Yet, 'politically correct' too-lazy-to-try-to-debate-about-your-God relativists, may just say, "oh, well everything is true, so nothing is truly true- and that's the truth."
yeah...okay...and fuzzy wuzzy wasn't very fuzzy. was he? 


Here's a HUGE, if not the BIGGEST problem with our society today. Another political attempt to please everyone, which ends up pleasing no one, therefore like many of the 'socially acceptable' statements and ideas- caves in on itself.
"Tolerate everything except intolerance!"
Okay, I just looked up the definition for 'intolerance' on it irks me. I guess it just says for itself what our culture has become.
"lack of toleration; unwillingness or refusal to tolerate or respect contrary opinions or beliefs, persons of different races or backgrounds, etc."[3]
Excuse me? "unwillingness" or "refusal"?  ..."to respect contrary opinions or..." okay I have issues with every single one of those words, so if I begin to emphasize on it, I'll just end up retyping it.
Here's the definition given for tolerate:
"to allow the existence, presence, practice, or act of without prohibition or hindrance; permit. "[4]
Sounds nice and pretty, right? Let's remove the synthesizers and autotune...and look at what this TRULY sounds like...what it TRULY is.
The new resolution, known as “resolution 16/18,” called on countries to combat “intolerance, negative stereotyping and stigmatization” based on religion, without seeking to criminalize speech – except in cases of “incitement to imminent violence.”[2]
Oh, we won't criminalize your free speech...well...except when we think you're encouraging violence that may be likely to occur.
Sooo...who gets to decide what, how and when violence is 'likely to occur'? Oh, that's right. When those really threatening, terrifying, violent pro-lifers are quietly praying on the sidewalk.
Read this shocking article (and you can sadly find mannnyyy more just like it) titled "Pro-life activist beaten, arrested, and accused of bomb plot by police while handing out pro-life flyers at local town fair":

And what about those out there fighting against the intolerance "based on religion" regarding the HHS mandate?
Let's go back to the "resolution 16/18" Obama Administration is pushing.
On the sidelines of a first meeting held to advance resolution 16/18, in Istanbul last July, Pakistan’s U.N. ambassador Zamir Akram said that the OIC [Organization of Islamic Cooperation] would not compromise on three things – anything said or done against the Qur’an, anything said or done against Mohammed, and discrimination against the Muslim community. (Akram represents a government overseeing some of the Islamic world’s most controversial blasphemy laws, where“blaspheming” the Qur’an or Mohammed carries the death penalty.)[2]
Whoo! Yeahh!! Let's tolerate the ones who refuse to 'tolerate' us! If we don't tolerate them...oh wait- they don't tolerate that! Well, since we have to tolerate their intoleration of our intoleration-
we're tolerating the death penalty.

I'm not being dramatic.
But when Catholics would not compromise...

The new Obama mandate that requires religious groups to pay for birth control and drugs that may cause abortions for their employees could result in fines as much as $2,000 per employee or $100 each day if they refuse to comply.[5]

 “Don’t impose your teaching upon us and make us do as a church what we find unconscionable to do!”[6]- Cardinal Timothy Dolan

 "the administration announced they were taking religious principles very seriously–by giving institutions an extra year to get over them. The Obama administration refused to change a controversial rule that would require religious institutions, in violation of their conscience, to pay for contraceptive drugs—including those that could cause an abortion."[7]

But let's tolerate those who killed a part of the United Sates on that one September day in 2001.

President Obama, how about you just tolerate our refusal to your unconstitutional mandates.

Finally, as much as I wanted to end with that comment, I have one thing left I have to clear up. (oh, and I'll have to just write about guilt another time, even though it goes hand in hand with truth and toleration...or is sort of the skewed connection between the two. But you've been very patient, so I'll save it for another time.)
BUT. I have to add that the HHS mandate is NOT a "Catholic" issue, nor is it a "contraceptive" issue. Yes, those two are very involved- but this is an American issue. An issue of Religious Freedom.
The Religious Freedom Act had it's own battles of being passed. Religious freedom laws were instituted and repealed over and over, beginning in 1649 with the Maryland Religion Toleration Act, up until the establishment of the Declaration of Independence in 1776, and the First Amendment as a part of the Bill of Rights, in 1791.
Those $2,000 per employee fines, will put religious affiliated organizations out of business. This includes, hospitals (who often help the poor for no costs), insurance companies (many which remain affordable for those who can barely afford insurance), social services...etc.

And in a TRUE final comment, I really wasn't planning on going off about the HHS mandate...but it goes along the lines of liberty and freedom and truth and tolerance...and all of it came out.
Heheh. I just read the post. it ended up nothing like I thought it would.

If you have any comments to add or respond, and/or ESPECIALLY if any of my information is incorrect, please feel free to uh...comment!

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.


Saturday, April 7, 2012

He has Risen!

Okay, now the happier post. The purpose of the suffering (read the Suffering post first).

Alleluia! (that word has a lot of 'l's)
He has overcome death, beat the devil, and opened the gates of Heaven for us. (some secret password...I for sure would have never gotten through it).

Sooo...I could try to go on all about Jesus rising, and us rising...well, now that I wrote that I think I briefly may...since something came up.

I found out yesterday (Saturday) that someone I know died on Friday (along with Jesus I guess). He wasn't very old, middle-age I guess... someone who I saw every couple months or so. I hadn't seen him too long ago, only a couple weeks, and he seemed to be doing fine (he was recovering from a car accident a few months prior, but other than that he was doing 'normal'). But all so know? I'm not even sure where I'm going here...I'm just completely putting down any sort of 'writing' shield I'm just typing out some thoughts here (not that that's not what I normally do...but I do attempt to have some clarity of thought). [sorry to throw this in the Easter post.] But during our Easter Vigil, and thinking about Jesus's death and resurrection, I thought of our own resurrection that came out of His. We shall rise again.

Death is not empty. I mean, why would it be? People really believe that we just go through our lives and then die and that's it? nothing? that's depressing. But I suppose that is why death is depressing to us. Okay, yes, death is very is a suffering...but only for us who have not lived through death...who have not passed. We mourn for's sad cause...we're left behind. It can also be sad when a person wasn't ready...but that isn't for us to determine. We just need to keep ourselves always ready, for the thief in the night. That way, when it comes, we may resurrect with Jesus, and we may celebrate our deaths.

Think about what dies. Our earthly bodies (which if our wait to pass is long, are old and wrinkly anyway) die, but only to gain new invincible, immortal, everlasting bodies.
"What you sow does not come to life unless it dies. 37When you sow, you do not plant the body that will be, but just a seed, perhaps of wheat or of something else. 38But God gives it a body as he has determined, and to each kind of seed he gives its own body. 39"- 1 Corinthians 15:36-39
...we are just the seeds of our next bodies...
"The body that is sown is perishable, it is raised imperishable; 43it is sown in dishonor, it is raised in glory; it is sown in weakness, it is raised in power; 44it is sown a natural body, it is raised a spiritual body."-1 Corinthians 15:42-44
"I, I'm invincible
I'm indestructible
It's my destiny

I, I'm invincible
I'm unshakeable
Through the truth in my soul

You know you just can't kill a man when he's dead
You know the spirit survives (invincible)
You can't stop the advance of the Kingdom to come
You know the truth is alive (invincible)

To be invincible
Without sacrifice

Feel, feel the birth inside
The life that cannot die
Are you invincible
You know you can't kill a man when he's dead." ~"Invincible" by Skillet

[Sorry about the tangent. I heard this song as I read that Scripture, and like I said- I've dropped my shield that would usually stay a tad more focused]

But what else dies when we die? Our pride. I mean, we still may have some form of reputation, but people can say 'whatever' about us...the impression we've made is done. We can't exactly 'fight back' with our nasty prides. We're in complete humility.

Weakness dies. Our sin dies. Once in Heaven, we no longer are tempted to sin. We no longer fall. We are no longer weak- but invincible.

Suffering dies. Through Jesus's suffering and death, and then after passing through our own- suffering and death die themselves once and for all for us. We no longer suffer in Heaven, and there is no death. We rise from our deaths, because Christ rose from His.

He has risen indeed!


Sooo...I really wanted to post on Friday about suffering, but by the time we went to church, watched The Passion as a family, I was really tired and went to be early. I had so much I wanted to write about on Good Friday...walking through His passion starting at the garden, and reflecting in each step...but I guess I'll just focus on suffering altogether [then again...I know I have notes somewhere on suffering as well...] and either write the post or save it for next Good Friday (if I'm still blogging, which I hope I will =).

-Oh but first I want to make a follow up to Thursday's washing of the feet.
9“Then, Lord,” Simon Peter replied, “not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!” 10Jesus answered, “A person who has had a bath needs only to wash his feet; his whole body is clean. And you are clean, though not every one of you.” 11For he knew who was going to betray him, and that was why he said not every one was clean.
There was an unclean man who did shortly after receive a bath of not only his feet, but his head, hands, entire body and soul.
 The guard who pierced Jesus's side...was showered in the blood and water of our Savior.

34One of the soldiers, however, pierced his side with a spear, and immediately blood and water flowed out. . . 36These things happened in fulfillment of the Scriptures that say, “Not one of his bones will be broken,”i 37and “They will look on the one they pierced.”j -John 19:34-37

"O Blood and Water which gushed forth from the heart of Jesus as a fount of mercy for us...Jesus, I trust in You."


So I guess I'll just start by writing what usually comes to mind when I think of suffering. Suffering has a purpose. So many times we suffer and think, "Really God? What's the point in this? Why do I have to suffer and struggle with this?" and we become so focus on our selves, and our pain. But have you ever prayed through suffering? I don't mean only praying as you suffer, but using your suffering as a prayer. Perhaps the next time you're inclined to complain about a situation, think, "I'll do this joyfully, so that my one friend may come to know God better." Or perhaps while exercising, "I'll do five more of this exercise to pray for all the innocent lives scheduled to be killed today, for their mothers and families, and for the ones doing the procedure. Or maybe while being tempted by food, or any temptation, "I won't fall under this temptation, to pray for all those with power and leadership positions, that they may lead those under them morally and justly, guiding them to You, God." Or simply do any of the actions as a prayer of love and thanksgiving to God. Even suffering through a headache or any physical, mental or spiritual pain; if we can endure it not for ourselves, but for a certain person, prayer, or simply as an act of love to God, it gives it so much more purpose as well as takes our focus off of ourselves and the pain, and onto someone else, for a much greater purpose.

Think about the greatest suffering ever. The most agonizing torture to any man, was not in the least bit purposeless. In fact, that Suffering, gave us Salvation. And all through that Suffering...that Man did not think of Himself. He did it for us. And the hardest part is...we're the ones who put Him there. We've betrayed Him. We've denied Him. We've whipped, scourged, and gouged into him. We've spat on Him. We've pressed and pierced His head with thorns. We've caused Him to stagger. We've hammered nails into His hands onto a cross. We've killed Him. And He has endured it- for us.

That grave suffering was the most horrible, painful, gruesome, wonderful, loving, beautiful...and above all- most purposeful...than any other.
Whatever we are going through- no matter how difficult and painful- cannot even begin to measure what our Savior endured for us. Let us then find purpose in our own suffering, and endure it for Him.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Wash MY feet??

2The evening meal was being served, and the devil had already prompted Judas Iscariot, son of Simon, to betray Jesus. 3Jesus knew that the Father had put all things under his power, and that he had come from God and was returning to God; 4so he got up from the meal, took off his outer clothing, and wrapped a towel around his waist.
When He died on the cross, He was wearing only a garment or 'towel' around his waist.I mean, I know it says 'outer' clothing, and maybe this means nothing. I dunno, just a thought I had as I read that.

5After that, he poured water into a basin and began to wash his disciples’ feet, drying them with the towel that was wrapped around him.

6He came to Simon Peter, who said to him, “Lord, are you going to wash my feet?”

7Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.”
We often don't know why our lives go the way they do, or why God 'lets' certain things happen to us. We should listen to these words whenever we are unsure about a situation at hand, or doubt that a certain circumstance has any purpose besides making us miserable. I'm sure the disciples were very perplexed, and had no idea whatsoever how Jesus's treacherous death could have in any way been positive. Faith, hope, and trust, all must have been tested amongst so many followers. How in the world could any good have come from that suffering? ...we didn't realize then what He was doing...but now we do.

8“No,” said Peter, “you shall never wash my feet.”

Jesus answered, “Unless I wash you, you have no part with me.”
So much humility on so many levels. Jesus, the Son of God, washing the feet of His disciple, His student [discipulus means 'student' in Latin btw]. Wow. I mean, we look at Peter's response and think "sheesh, you're telling the Son of God what He will and will not do?" But what if you or I was sitting there. Would you have no problem with sitting, getting your feet washed, by Jesus? What if He came up to you right now, quietly knelt down, removed your shoes and multi-colored socks, and...washed...your...feet. How would you respond? I know I would be like Peter and protest. I'm so unworthy! -but only with my dirty feet. I am unworthy because they are SO dirty...but Jesus doesn't grimace. He doesn't make a face at the smell. He doesn't rush to find the nearest germX. He kneels down at my feet...and washes them. They are no longer filthy.
So why aren't we, the disciples, washing Jesus's, our Master's, feet? because they aren't dirty. They don't have a speck of dust on them. Well, that is until...until our dirt and filth has accumulated to Him, once he is there taking that dirt, filth, and blood away from us. He washes the dirt from us, by taking it on Himself.

9“Then, Lord,” Simon Peter replied, “not just my feet but my hands and my head as well!”

10Jesus answered, “A person who has had a bath needs only to wash his feet; his whole body is clean. And you are clean, though not every one of you.” 11For he knew who was going to betray him, and that was why he said not every one was clean.
Jesus, I've betrayed you. Please drench me with your living water and cleanse me. Head to toe. Peter may have asked, but he did not need it because he was clean. I am not. And although I know am not worthy for you to cleanse me, you still do...and then I am worthy to be in your presence- to have a part with you.

12When he had finished washing their feet, he put on his clothes and returned to his place.
After He finishes cleansing us of our filth...he returns to His place. At the right hand of the Father.

“Do you understand what I have done for you?” he asked them. [we Disciples aren't so quick ;) ]  13“You call me ‘Teacher’ and ‘Lord,’ and rightly so, for that is what I am. 14Now that I, your Lord and Teacher, have washed your feet, you also should wash one another’s feet. 15I have set you an example that you should do as I have done for you.[*Thaddeus raise his hand* "ooh! ooh! how about we make these rainbow bracelets that say WWJD? Get it? as in What Would Jesus Do? it'd be like- I'm walking, and then I see this guy whose having troubles with his donkey, and I can look at my bracelet and be like BAM! WWJD?" *Thomas rolls eyes* "I doubt that will ever catch on."]
 16I tell you the truth, no servant is greater than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him. 17Now that you know these things, you will be blessed if you do them.
This last line really made me think. I didn't get why Jesus said,"I tell you the truth" as in, 'I kid you not'..."no servant is greater than his master..." I thought, I've got to be missing something, because my first reaction is "duh!" but you never say "duh" to Jesus...nothing He ever says is obvious enough to us humans to give Him that response. So why did He have to mention it? Well, I put myself back in the unworthy position of Jesus washing my that point...He- The Master- was serving me. ...uh...okay to be honest I thought I had something but now I forgot and am all confused again. But there is one thing I noticed...previously He said "You call me Teacher" which would imply that they the disciples, are the students (which again, is simply the translation of 'discipulus' in Latin).Then He says: "no servant is great than his master, nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him." Well, the word 'apostle' translates from Greek 'apostolos' meaning "one who is sent away."  Therefore, the translation is "emissary" which we then get from Latin 'ex' "from" and "'mitto' "send". We then simply make the translation of 'messenger.' So when Jesus said, "nor is a messenger greater than the one who sent him" I think Jesus could have very straightforwardly been meaning the apostles to Him. But...I guess I figured that anyways, so that boring tangent really didn't get me anywhere. I'm tired. I'm not ending this in some summary in attempt to make you think. I'm just clicking publish, closing this post, closing the screen, and closing my eyes.
-no matter how awkward it may be- let Jesus wash your feet...But then...try your best to keep them clean...wear flip flops in the locker room and such...

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