Monday, January 21, 2013

We Each Have Gone Astray

You got me
You found me out
I admit
I confess
I am flawed
I am unwise
I have said the wrong thing to you
I haven't met your expectations
I haven't even
Met your needs
Sometimes you needed love
But I was harsh
Sometimes you needed an ear
But I didn't have time
Sometimes you needed Jesus
And I was only human
Sometimes I was too occupied with my own hurts
To tend to yours in any gentle way

Forgive me?

I got you
I found you out
Admit it
Just confess now
You are flawed
You are unwise
You said the wrong thing to me
You didn't meet my expectations
You couldn't even meet my needs
Sometimes I needed love
But you were harsh
Sometimes I needed an ear
But you had no time for me
Sometimes I needed Jesus
And you were only human
Sometimes you were too occupied with your own hurts
To tend to mine in any gentle way

I can forgive you

We are caught
We are found out
Maybe it's time we admit
Maybe we should now confess
We are flawed
We are unwise
We have said the wrong things
We haven't met expectations
We haven't met anyone's needs
Sometimes not even our own
Someone was in need of love
And we were harsh
Someone needed an ear
But we had no time
Someone needed Jesus
But we were only human
Sometimes we have been too preoccupied with our own hurts
To tend to anyone else's in any gentle way

Let's forgive

Let's forgive ourselves

Let's forgive each other

Let's offer this to the world
Not that we can absolve
But that He can atone
And make all things new

Sunday, January 13, 2013

I Search For Middle Ground

I search for middle ground
That place of warmth
Where life can happen
Where things can grow
And bloom


Rather I seem
To be stuck
In that molten place
Of red-hot fire
Or that frozen ground
Icy, barren, and oh-so cold

And then there's you
My dear, my dear
Alternately
Burned
Or frozen
Because of my lack

I search for the place
Of balance
That place of warmth
Where you can grow
Free and alive
And happy
You can flourish there

I can't tell you
What it all means

My heart knows
But the words won't form

When I look
For that magical envelope
With the answers
I find them written

In gibberish

Suddenly

I don't understand
And I have nothing
But empty hands
Which spread their fingers
In supplication
And searching
But find nothing
Where there ought to be
A wealth of knowledge


In my own lack
I wander
I look for the place of warmth
It was just here
I know it

But in the end,
I know that you will need more
And I pray that you find it
With, or without
Me

Friday, January 11, 2013

Life As I Know It

Obviously it has been a while since the last time I wrote anything. But rather than wallow in guilt over not writing every day like I meant to, I'm going to just keep going. Here is what has been happening in my life since I last wrote:
 
We all got sick. Last Saturday we all laid around and watched TV in the morning (except Aaron who was at work) and then all fell asleep on the couch in the afternoon because we were sick. It started out with high temperatures and exhaustion, and then morphed into coughs and stuffy noses.
 
I was so relieved when Aaron got home from work that night! I felt so tired that even carrying Lily sounded like too much (and if you know anything about Lily, she is hardly a weighty creature!). He totally saved the day-- he figured out dinner, got everyone fed, and sent me off to bed early while he took care of the kids.
 
The next day I felt a lot better. I tried to take it easy because that night the Season Premier of Downton Abbey was showing at the Kress (this neat little theater downtown, in case you don't know), and I really, really, REALLY wanted to go. Happily, I was able to go with some really wonderful friends and, in spite of being a little tired and a little sneezy/runny/stuffy nosed, had a lot of fun.
 
After that, I suppose I just got caught up in life, running around, sick kids, Aaron's days off, etc. Tuesday night I had a hard time sleeping because I suddenly became itchy all over, and on Wednesday I went to my Prenatal check-up feeling rather on the wretched side. I mentioned my various ailments, hoping for some kind of relief, but apparently most of how I feel right now is from just being pregnant, and I will just have to wait it out.
 
The good news is that I only have two months or less before the baby comes! Surely I can endure being tired, huge, and itchy, my arms feeling like they are falling asleep, and my legs feeling like they may just detach and go their own way at any time for a couple months right?!? Women have been doing this for thousands of years, they say....

Friday, January 4, 2013

Les Miserables

Today, to my utter happiness, a package came in the mail which contained the soundtrack to the movie Les Miserables. I saw it last Friday and have been going around attempting to sing "I Dreamed A Dream" ever since, which has been difficult since I don't even know half the words. I wasn't a fan before I saw the movie; that is, I knew the story, and that it was this powerful, wonderful story, but I wasn't one of those people who knew all the songs before stepping into the theater.
 
I wasn't entirely prepared for how moving the songs would be when I watched the movie. I cried through half of it! Even today, when I listened to the music while making dinner, I couldn't help getting a little choked up listening to Anne Hathaway sing, hearing the pain, knowing the story behind the song.
 
Another part I love in the movie is when Jean Valjean is trying to understand this amazingly gracious act by a bishop which essentially gave him a second chance when no one else would so much as give him the time of day. I can't forget the look on his face while he sings, questioning who he is and what he should do, wondering if he really could be a better man, if he really could live a new life. It's a beautiful picture of the redemption we find in Christ.
 
There is so much more that could be said, about the movie, about the music, and most of all about the story, and how it has reflections of a Far Greater Story. But I find myself at a loss to say any of it. Tonight is one of those nights where my heart is reflective, and words can't do justice to the emotions simmering there. If you haven't seen the movie, I hope you will! I hope your heart is touched like mine was. Most of all, I hope that you see that picture of redemption. I hope you see Jesus.
 
Most people see Jesus-- see God, as being more like Javert. Javert is all about the law. Jean Valjean was a criminal and Javert cannot see anything else. He is constantly searching for him to put him back in prison, where he believes Valjean deserves to be. No matter what Jean Valjean does, Javert is just waiting for him to screw up, to show what he wholeheartedly believes are his true colors. Javert sees the prisoner, the slave, the theif, the criminal. He has judged and found Valjean guilty.
 
Sometimes we think God is out to get us too. That He's just waiting for us to do the wrong thing. He sees all, and knows all, and oh yes! He sees everything nasty your heart--you know you could never be good enough! But this is false. That's not who God is. God is the One giving a second chance. He's the One giving us the silver candlesticks to go with the other silver treasures we stole and saying, "This man did nothing wrong." That is what Jesus did on the cross. He gave us a chance at forgiveness. He gave us the possibility of a new life. He gave us redemption. The past is past.
 
I love stories that have elements of Jesus in them. They are always my favorites, and they make my heart feel like soaring. And yes, I know that sounds so cheesy! But oh well-- it's true :) And here I thought I had nothing more to say!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Treasure Something

Earlier today the kids were watching an animated movie called Treasure Planet. I started to post something on Facebook about it, and it got so long that I decided I would just write a blog about it instead. Then when I tried to delete it, I posted it instead-- well, half of it anyway, ha ha :) Another case of technology getting the better of me!
 
As usual when the kids watch something, I hear more than I actually see. From the dining room, I could hear Long John Silver talking to Jim; how he was essentially taking him under his wing and befriending him. I've never read the book, but I've seen Muppet Treasure Island many times. If you haven't seen either, and don't know the story, the important thing to know right now is that Jim, the main character, is a teenage (or around that age) kid, and Long John Silver is ultimately the bad guy.  
 
It bothers me that the bad guy is being nice to the kid. Bad guys are supposed to be bad, good guys are supposed to be good. Bad guys are not supposed to be nice! That's what I was thinking to myself after hearing it. And don't think that Long John was pretending so Jim wouldn't catch on that he's the bad guy. He's not. When you watch, you get a definite sense that Long John has a soft spot for this kid who has no father and is out on his own.
 
Again, I haven't read the book, but it's a book that's considered a Classic. It was written I-don't-know-when, and is still around today, and I've discovered that those old Classics often do have something to them that made them "Classics" in the first place. As a writer myself, I can tell you that you want the characters in your story to seem as real as possible. Real people aren't simply "bad guys" or "good guys". They have stories, backgrounds-- they're three dimensional. This is why Long John Silver is being nice to a lonely kid. Because Long John is not merely a villain, he's a man, he's a human being, and human beings are complex.
 
In real life, sometimes "bad guys" are honorable. Sometimes they do the right thing. Sometimes they tell the truth. In real life, sometimes the "good guys" are jerks. Sometimes they're selfish. Sometimes they lie. It's not simple or clear cut all the time. That's what makes life hard, and challenging, and even fun at times-- it's not always simple.
 
Where am I going with all this? Honestly I have no idea! Ha ha :) But I'm pretty sure I'm going to have to read the book now.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

30 Day Challenge

The last few months I've been thinking I should really start writing again. I'm not sure why I stopped. Maybe I haven't been inspired; maybe I thought it didn't matter; or maybe I've been too busy trying to wrangle all these children and keep them from burning down my house or each other! Whatever the reason, the start of a new year seemed like a good time to pick up the old writing habit and dust it off.
 
A few years ago, I made a resolution to write every single day for the next year, which lasted all of three months. This time around, I'm pregnant with my fifth child and due in February and am under no illusions that I will be able to write every single day for the next year.
 
But, I think I can handle 30 days! Whether that turns out to be the next 30 days in January, or thirty days over the course of the next year, remains to be seen, ha ha :)
 
In any case, the journey begins!
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