Wednesday, July 25, 2007

fairy tales.

some might say that i am quite a movie fanatic. others might say that i am a complete bookworm. both would be correct. i have been known to IMDB just about everything, obnoxiously quote my favorite movies, & know random facts about movies i have never even seen. i always have a book in my oversized purse. if im in greenville, 90% of the time you can find me in barnes & noble. i like stories... whether told through film or books. i have a rule where i always read the book first. i can develop my own images. movies just develop them for you. i love the stories because they are other people's problems, other people's triumphs, failures, love lives. it is fake. separate from reality. it doesnt affect me. alter my life. i like stories because i am so detached from it. just a member of the audience. i didnt have to "feel" if i didnt want to.

sometimes we get sucked into these stories. most movies and books that are fiction, do not accurately portray the events of life. i have never been rowed into an entire cove of swans by an exboyfriend who has spent the last 6 years of his life restoring the house i had dreamed of living in one day. i didnt get voted prom queen, homecoming queen, student body president, captain of the cheerleading squad... all while dating the quarterback of the football team. the boy doesnt always get the girl, the underdog doesnt always come back from a 50 point deficit and win the championship game. ive never had a boy drive cross country all through the night to show up on my doorstep and tell me he loved me and always had and that he couldnt live without me. does that happen at all? to anyone? we get lost in the fairy tales. the happily ever afters. carrie stokes told me some of the best advice ive ever heard in my entire life: "expectations are joy's greatest thief". we buy into the lie that life is actually like that... sleepless in seattle. sweet home alabama. sixteen candles. and when that boy doesnt show up at our door months later. when the cinderella team doesnt win the game. when the dad doesnt make it home from war. when the boy doesnt get the girl. we are SO let down. disappointed. that our lives didnt play out like a movie on a big screen or this month's new york times' best seller.

i dont know how i got off on this tangent or how i started thinking about this today. all i know is i was listening to the Jon McLaughlin song Just Give It Time... and this is what spurred from spurred from it. that song def sums up my entire senior year of college (the 1st senior year. not the 2nd.. which is about the begin. yay for 5th yr seniors.) listen to the song. read the lyrics. i think its pretty freakin awesome.

yay for talking to beansy tonight through our awesome messaging system that we have had going on all summer long.

tomorrow i get to see wilksy :) driving to cola town after work to save her & whatever sanity she has left. i move on saturday!

p.s. where are the rhett butler's of the world? they need to rise up.

there's one thing I do know... and that is that I love you, Scarlett. In spite of you and me and the whole silly world going to pieces around us, I love you. Because we're alike. I've loved you more than I've ever loved any woman and I've waited for you longer than I've ever waited for any woman. Here's a soldier of the South who loves you, Scarlett. Wants to feel your arms around him, wants to carry the memory of your kisses into battle with him.
-rhett butler talking to scarlett o'hara (Gone With the Wind)

Monday, July 23, 2007


who knew that moving out could be so exhausting. i was not meant to do heavy lifting, that is for sure. all that is left in mine & kate's room, that is actually mine, is my dresser/mirror, my desk, & my clothes. the room is so empty now and barely feels like home (minus all 50000 pictures). it has been def physically exhausting. i thought it would also be emotionally exhausting, but it hasnt been at all. no crying. no sadness. just overwhelmed with the anticipation for a new beginning. God must have figured that he would give me a break from the emotional part, after surviving the past year. which i am very grateful for. i seriously wake up feeling strong, knowing i can make it through the day, through the move, through the changes. ive never felt that before. i am so thankful and so blessed that He has been bestowing that grace on me and continues to do so. it has made this process bearable and amazing. i can remember when He first told me to move out of 515 and i kept saying no... and he kept saying "trust me." i did. and He pulled through as always. why do i hesitate? that time. anytime. why? KNOWING He has what is best for me. ill trust a flawed person, but not the perfect creator who put the stars in the sky?!

is it just me, or have you ever looked back and noticed that there was a time when you were completely not yourself? i didnt realize it at the time. i felt normal at the time. i thought i was myself. how did i slip into this alter ego? not split personality, but i guess when you become so enthralled in something you lose yourself in a sense. i dont really even know the person i was for almost a year of my life. that is a scary thing. how did i lose control? oh wait. im not the one who is in control anyways. i put my identity in another person, instead of in Christ. i hated the person i became. at the end of the day i would think... why did i act like that? why did i say that? why did i make such a big deal about nothing? this is not me. but i kept living a lie as a stranger. who was that girl? i dont think it was the influence of anyone. i think that instead of dying to myself, i was living for myself. for selfish reasons. not for God. not to love others. not to be His hands and feet. i was living blindly. to see how miserable it made me. and the relationships it hurt and the things it destroyed. it was not worth it. i didnt gain anything. i was in it to gain whatever it was that i wanted. and i got nothing. not even an inch.

i move this weekend. its a new beginning. the real me.

wilksy & lins always tell me how i am going to write a book one day. wilksy asked me one day if i was going to mention her in the Acknowledge page. i wouldnt have it any other way :) lins called me tonight and told me that she reads my blog all the time. i was actually thinking to myself yesterday, does anyone even read this? i do it not just for myself, but also for others. how does she always know when i need encouragement? amazing. lins told me tonight that i have to write a book. and that she would be the first to buy it. she said my words are so powerful that they move her. i dont say these things to brag. i say these things so that you can see the hearts of two girls who i am so so thankful for. who are so encouraging. i am so blessed and loved. they are both so beautiful :) and i am glad they are my best friends.

and for a minute there, i lost myself. -panic at the disco

all my life i've looked at words as though i were seeing them for the first time. -hemingway

Saturday, July 21, 2007

going to the chapel.

today was the day of weddings. my friends laura beth & blake got married at 2:00 in greer and my friends kimberly & steven got married at 6:00 in powdersville. i am exhausted. a lot of that probably has to do with dancing for 3 hours straight at the second wedding. my feet are hurtin. both weddings were beautiful. i love weddings. it was so good to see everyone. LB & blake's wedding was like a reunion. next wedding is Bridget & david's on oct 10. then matthew ables... then jerri & davey... then kg & brandon... then rebecca & jeremy. one of which i am a program attendant and one of which i am a bridesmaid. then there is rebecca & graydon followed by missy.... which i am a photographer for both. is it just me or is everyone getting engaged/married. ive already had 4 weddings previous to these two...just in the past 2 months.

so. ive gone to a ton of weddings this year, half of my friends are engaged, and girl i work with is planning her wedding all the time. i wont lie... its hard not to think about your own wedding. i am finally content with the fact that i am not engaged like everyone else i know. i have too much fun living with girls i love, spontaneous road trips with best friends, slumber parties, etc... all things that dont really happen when you are married. life is too good. too free. too fun. right now for me to be tied down. i just now learned how to live my life without being too dependent on others. im just now comfortable in my own skin. i think i just recently learned to truly love myself & others. im not ready for the rest of my life or the real world. im ready for tomorrow.

dont get me wrong now. i do want to get married. im the girl who has had her wedding planned for the past 18 years of her 22 year life. im type-A. if you know me, you know that i am "that girl". ive thought of everything. i could probably plan my wedding in 2 months if i had to... but i would rather not suffer a heartattack in my early twentys. everytime i go to weddings, when the bride walks down the aisle, i always watch the groom. something about the groom's reaction is so moving. just to see a guy in awe of his beautiful bride..maybe even teary eyed on some ocassions. at LB's wedding today, i just could sense this happiness. her & blake both just looked love struck. it was so beautiful. i have had the priveledge of knowing them before they started dating.. during.. and as they got engaged & began planning the wedding. just to see how they have learned and survived and changed is so incredible.

i cant wait to spend the rest of my life with my best friend. to get married in my grandparent's church. to walk down the ailse. to see my love standing at the end waiting on me. to wear a beautiful white gown. to have sex (come on. you know you were thinkin it too.) to sit for hours & stare at the diamond engagement ring that will be on my left ring finger. to love someone through sickness & health. to see my friends cry. to hug my family bye. to have a house of my own. to wake up to my husband every morning. to grow old together.

its a strange feeling picturing your wedding when the groom does not have a face. not knowing who you will love you unconditionally... flaws & quirks & all.

i cant wait.
i want to serve my husband.
i look forward to it.
it makes me melt just thinking about it.

but first.
ill go back to guatie.
ill go love orphans in africa.
ill move out of 515.
ill graduate college.
ill attend a ton more weddings.
ill fall in love.
ill be as much like Jesus as i can.

and im okay with that. im not ready for the rest of my life just yet. just tomorrow will do for now.

Underneath all your white
My Lady, My Love, My Bride
In your darkest hours
Will I love you still?
I have and I always will.
-dave barnes

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

breaking free.

i have read velvet elvis more than once. ok more than twice. every time i read it, i learn something new. i dive into a part of it that i read over the first and third time. i read a sentence differently than i did the second time. i feel something new with every page.

in one chapter rob bell is talking about when he pretty much was a low as he could go. he was sitting in a closet. he describes his experience with such desperation and emotion, his words come alive and embody your soul.

without pain, we dont change.

sometimes you have to hit rock bottom, in order to get back up. when you lose everything and you get to that point of desperation, you try to grab onto anything you can that might can pull you out and save you from the terrible real-life nightmare you are living through. we want to be rescued, so we look to people to fix us. to piece us back together. make us better. when they cant, we blame them. if a person could fix us, we wouldnt have any reason to ask God to help us. rob bell sums it up perfectly...

if i didnt change, i was not going to make it.
it was in that abyss that i broke & got help... because it's only hit bottom & are desperate enough that things start to get better.

just because we decide to change & let our wounds be healed, doesnt mean all suffering ceases and we get the easy way out. a great deal of pain comes with restoration. we have to be broken of the old in order to get become the new. sometimes God has to beat it out of us. when we let go of everything weighting us down on the bottom of the ocean floor, we are cut loose, slowly floating to the top so we can breathe again.

and a new journey began, one that has been very, very painful. and very, very freeing.

we begin to take baby steps. learning how to crawl. then walk. eventually running. we have to learn to love ourselves. love God. love others. in these things we will find happiness and peace.

we understand peace to be the absence of conflict.

we have a distorted view of what inner peace is.
the presence of the goodness of God. it's the presence of wholeness, completeness.
we are not made up of flaws. cracks. things we lack.
our focus sits idle on pessimism... hindering hope and paralyzing our hearts and mind.

there is the ongoing need to return to the cross to be reminded of our brokenness and dependence on God. the point of the cross isnt forgiveness. forgiveness leads to something much bigger: restoration.

we are broken by the only one who can repair us.
we were saved.
by grace.

it is one thing to be forgiven; it is another thing to become more and more and more and more the person God made you to be.

in order to do that we have to break free of guilt. disobedience. selfishness. all the sin that hinders us from being "that" person. when we do not fully give ourselves to God and live just as he intended for us, it is as if he is giving us a beautiful picture he has painted and we splatter mud all across it. we break God's heart over and over, throwing his pictures in the mud, yet he always repaints is for us.

for Jesus to heal my soul, i had to stare my junk right in the face. it will be there until it is hunted down and identified and dealt with. running is prolonging. wherever you go, there you are. i have learned that the deeper you go, the more painful it gets. we have to be willing to drag up everything.

that is by far the most emotionally draining process i have ever had to go through. you have to erase people. emotions. memories. thoughts. impulses. it is as if you are in an emotional rehab trying to detox yourself of all of the junk that consumed you and turned you into the junkie that you are. hanging on by a thread. we become physically and emotionally exhausted trying to be who other people want us to be, instead of who we were created to be.

whe happens is our lives become so heavily oriented around the expectations of others that we become more and more like them and les and less like ourselves.

we are not in control. we have to stop living in the past. look and move forward. leave the old. step into the new. trust. listen. be the beautiful masterpiece that God has painted for us.

but i am not defined by what i am not. and understanding this truth is a huge part of becoming whole. i had to stop living in reaction and start letting a vision for what lies ahead pull me forward.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

the purple huffy.

tonight i was going to blog about Africa and what i have been learning in the past week. i have been doing a lot of research and making phone calls and reading up. i was ready to pour my heart out about the movement that is happening right now to aid Africa and its people.


i have decided to delay that blog for the time being. i lost sight of it when the policeman was standing in our very messy den... filing a report on the burglary of 515.

calm down. there were no guns involved. i have no tales of heroism, armed robbers, ski masks, or a visit from Carl. Jess left at 4 and i got home from work at 5. i parked my car in the driveway instead of pulling around back. not really sure why. i was home by myself, up in amber's loft reading & on my computer. the house was dead silent. so we know it wasnt during that time. i left at 9:15 to go to Chic Fila and CVS. i got home at 9:50. Amber got to the house at 10. when i pulled around back i noticed that the door to our basement had been broken off of our house and was laying on the ground with mine & katie's bikes on top of it. i thought "jess must have cut the grass this afternoon". amber thought the same thing. jess rolls up around midnight... come to find out, the lawnmower was stolen. this is scary for us in the sense that there were less than 2 hours today that no one was here. so someone had to have been watching us and our house. they knew what they were coming for... or so the policeman says... because the bikes are closest to the door and the lawnmower is pushed to the back... so they had to break off the door, pull the bikes out, go into the back and get the mower. they either did it in broad day light, or during the 30 minute span i was gone.


so the cop comes... super nice. did the search. wrote the report. looked around the house. talked to us about an alarm, a new front door, a new lock, a new chain, etc. i suggested the swat team. come to find out he is on the swat team. ironic. he told us to call if we saw anyone walking slowly down the street. he should probably just get a beeper then.... or his phone will be ringing off the hook.

when he was looking out back at everything... he said "they probably didnt take that bike because it's purple". there is NOTHING wrong with the purple huffy. i think i might take it to a pawn shop when we go looking for the mower though.

reinforcements were sent & andrew is here to stay with us. im sleeping in the floor in yosh & ramber's room because kate is in cola town.

ohhhhh the stories that come from experiences at 515 :)

i still wanna know why they didnt take the purple huffy....

Friday, July 13, 2007

first walk. then run.

today has been full of strangeness. here is a short list of randomocity from today.

1. jess & i watched the mill burn to the ground.
2. fire is really really hot... even from 100 yards away.
3. all the roads were blocked off, so i couldnt get to work for a while.
4. today i brought the camera to work... me & lindsey & rebecca (two girls i work with) documented a day of work in our office. hilarious.
5. debbie got mad at me.
6. trey's parents & sister came in town today.
7. ate at smoke on the water for the first time. (i know. i cant believe i havent eaten there yet either).
8. found out im going back to guatie for sure. dec 8-18 :) yes!!!!

this week i was missing wilksy so bad... i almost left work & drove to cola to see her. i love that. missing someone that much. im so thankful to have her as one of my best friends :) daily encouragement from beans... unbelievable. she is constant.. through good & bad. never leaves my side. im so glad she has had an amazing experience in nawlins... but i am ready for her to come back! my lins got a job! big girl in a big girl world :) she's gotta make some money so we can go to savannah come august!

i got self-absorbed tonight. i hate that. when you can see it happen. it makes me dislike myself. i am still learning. baby steps. as jake would say... im running before i can walk. it was good to be back in atown this week. i dont know what i would do without jake & amazing conversations. i want him to start blogging. he could be the next donald miller.

people have helped me a lot in my life. but especially in the past year. i respect that and am so thankful for that. i want to be a person that people can come to like that. i didnt know i was capable of being that for anyone. tonight one of my friends told me that she almost drove over an hour to see me because she was freakin out. im so glad that she knows she can do that and that i will always be here. i love helping people. as she was pouring her heart out to me, she kept saying she wanted to change. she wanted to be different. she wanted to not be so self-absorbed. she spoke with such passion that i could almost feel change. i could see it coming. taking shape. so awesome. i love learning. i love watching people learn. change is so beautiful. her heart is beautiful. and so is she :)

sometimes i feel like i care so much and i am so filled with the desire to love, that i dont do it right. maybe there isnt a wrong way. i feel like i love in the wrong places. does that make sense? b always used to tell me that i care about others so much. and i do. sometimes i wish i didnt.... but thats bc its not always easy. why do we defer from anything that is remotely challenging? it is hard to care/love and it not be reciprocated or appreciated. unconditional. it teaches me to love for unselfish reasons. so ill continue to love. and care. it breaks down walls. it mends. it prevails. why do people resist it?

tomorrow i have 2 lingerie showers & a bachelorette party. busy afternoon & night.
my mind is racing tonight. i cant wait to go read more Velvet Elvis. goodnight all.

You've got so much love in you. - the rocket summer

Thursday, July 12, 2007

dont stop believing.

tonight the girls of 515 went to dinner @ chiefs wings & firewater for its opening night. all 4 of us... reunited... for the first time in months. we even did a toast. we are so nerdy & we like it just that way. then i told the girls about the change that was to come in the next 2 weeks.

i have decided to move out of 515. its a new beginning. a new start. 515 is the last piece of the past that is with me. i never thought i would see the day where i would willingly choose to move out of the place that i have lived for over 2 years... the place i have come to love. the girls who are my sisters and best friends. lately i have learned that when God tells you to do something, you trust Him and you do it. so here i go. growing up. moving on. packing boxes. this is the end of a chapter, but the beginning of a new and beautiful one. it is time for me to be set completely free of my past.... for me to set them free of it as well. i wouldnt have made it without them. but they deserve to live without that now. i am so grateful for their love & devition. it amazes me still.

ramber, yosh, & kate were so encouraging & supportive & understanding of my decision. such a blessing. i was terrified to tell them. to move. to leave familiarity & comfort behind. i felt like i was changing and they werent... oh how i was wrong. we are actually all moving out in a way. katie is moving out of our room & into jess & amber's room... they will now reside in mine & kate's old room... "the hang out spot" as they refer to it as ;)

so the story goes. ill be only 2 minutes down the road. i will always be the 4th member of 515... it is not the walls or an address that binds us together & identifies us as 515.. it is the girls who made the house a home. they will forever be my housemates.. katie will forever by roomie.. and i will still be in the christmas card (even if i have to pay "the fine" ;)

we spent the beginning of the end.... dressing up like the spice girls & making a new video on my mac. it's on facebook. go watch it. laugh. make fun of us. you will see 4 girls who love each other more than you can fathom... having the time of their life. loving every second of it. and savoring it as if it were the last. that is love.

i am so blessed. God is good. peace out.

it is one of the blessings with old friends that you can be stupid with them. -ralph waldo emerson

Monday, July 9, 2007


today was.... amazing. that word does not even do it justice. read yesterday's blog (great expectations) before you read this one. it makes it better. for real.

things that happened today:
- Mere O. and i set a lunch date for wednesday :) she is awesome & so encouraging. good things are in store.
- i am back at work. i missed it. i missed the people. im glad to be back. loving what im doing.
- jacob & i had a conversation a few weeks ago about tithing & money... how God will provide. i was kinda wondering how i was going to eat this week... & then i found out i was getting a $100 check in the mail.
- i photographed my first wedding at the end of june. the groom's parents liked the pictures so much, they sent me that check in the mail as a bonus. amazing. i got paid to do what i love most. and God did provide.
- the maid of honor that was in that wedding... saw the pictures and has booked me as her photographer for her wedding next may. booked a year in advance? yes. she was afraid i would get booked. speechless. i think this makes me an official photographer.
- a girl i work with heard me talking about the weddings, etc and she is engaged. she asked to see my stuff. i am now her photographer for her wedding in september. she called her best friend who is getting married in october, and i am now HER photographer as well.
- i seriously am still on cloud 9 and it does not seem real to me. this is my dream. i have imagined this moment. i feel like a kid on christmas morning.
- i have not drank a coke today. just sweet tea & coffee. thats a step right? ;)
- things are being made new. beauty is being made out of rubble. this is the start of something good.

home run derby + chinese takeout = :)

ill leave you with this... a quote as usual...

sorrow has its place in a rooted, human spirituality; but it should never consume all the space. it should never identify us. it is Jesus who defines who we are. and Jesus is about resurrection & renewal, about making dead things come to life. - winn collier (relevant)

Sunday, July 8, 2007

great expectations.

my thoughts are random tonight. they do not connect. they are not profound by any means. neither here nor there.

i took a 12 day hiatus. took road trips... spartanburg. greenville. lexington/cola. hilton head. spent time with people i love very much. tomorrow i go back to anderson. back to work. back to 515.

the other day ella said to me.... "you gots your ningerfails painted aunt jamie?"
i have it written down in my journal & everytime i read it, i cant help but be happy :)

coming from a once very high maintenance control freak.... if you sit & think about different things that seemed so important or life altering or dramatic...its really not worth it. its not a big deal. we worry so much. petty things steal our focus and beg for our attention. money, school, the desire to belong, routine, plans, etc.

i have found that i am happiest with the simple things in life.
laying in a hammock. dusk. reading books. coffee. the smell of lake water. my poppa's blue eyes that match my own. sweet tea. spending hours in barnes & noble. learning. people's stories of survival. blankets. movies. ceiling fans. riding with the windows down. being barefoot outside. lightning bugs. small towns. southern accents. freckles. listening to emmy lou sing. music videos on cmt. real conversations. familiarity. writing. charleston. when i see the garnet oasis in the middle of an orange desert & i know im home where the gamecocks play. understanding.

you know when you are so full of anticipation that you can barely sit still? that is what i am feeling right now. except i have no idea what i am anticipating. God is doing something big. and i am not asking why, i am simply trusting. i know whatever it is, it will be something more amazing than i could ever have imagined. i have a stirring inside of me. i cannot wait to see what is around the corner.


blessed are you if you trust when you cannot understand. -l.b. cowman

Saturday, July 7, 2007

think outside the bubble.

so i have been thinking about this lately. sometimes we are so consumed in a bubble of people or thinking... that we forget to live separate from that. we experience separation anxiety & we dont know how to exaclty function outside of our bubble. we havent balanced what is inside the bubble with what is outside the bubble (aka the real world). community is a good thing. it is necessary. sometimes we take advantage of community. i am guilty of this. i like community that is familiar, comfortable, constant. sometimes i think we blur the lines of community & clique. its so easy to get lost in the grey area of it. we cross over without ever knowing it. i had to stop. step out of the bubble. and realize i made it my life & was not open to anything outside of it. once i stepped out of it & was looking in... i saw that it wasnt worth it... the worries, the fears, the drama, etc. i had lost sight of community & gotten sucked into the grey area & spit out on the other side. i was living my life for what was inside the bubble. not for what was also outside of it. God works in the most mysterious ways. He has been pulling me out of the bubble to look at the big picture for years. and i have resisted. because i was comfortable. im so thankful for feeling uncomfortable & unsettled & restless to the point where i could no longer sit still.

keep exploring, keep arranging, keep shaping & forming & bringing in new perspectives. -rob bell (velvet elvis)

Friday, July 6, 2007


im battling something deep within my heart and i dont even have words to describe it. however, i will give you a preface to the situation. i have been praying for months for God to teach me how to love unconditionally and trust Him, as well as people. i think that child-like faith caused me to assume that since i was asking God to give me trust & love, two things he desired for me, that they would just be given.... i just had to wait. I went & saw Evan Almighty the other night and there was a part of the movie where morgan freeman ("God") said something like "When we ask for courage, we are not just given it... we are given situations that allow us to be courageous". In the past few weeks, God told me to love someone that i was hesitant to love. i told God "are you serious? ill love anyone else, just not that person" bc i knew it was hard. He said "you want to learn to love unconditionally? then trust me. love that person. genuinely." so i did. and amazing things happened. i have been praying lately for God to teach me the depth of GRACE in full. so He gave me a situation where i could choose to offer grace or choose to hold a grudge. i am battling this because i feel so passive. for now i will pray and listen. i will practice grace and ask God to plant seeds from that.... blooming into something beautiful.

this is an excerpt from an article in this month's issue of RELEVANT magazine. God is always communicating to us in different ways. we just have to stop and listen.... or read.

Often my little Christian world prides itself in being the model of ethical behavior. I am not sure that we can honestly wear the armor and carry the sword of moral authority, because they do not always fit us. Instead I believe we are called to lay down our weapons and dance gracefully in the battle zone.

We are called to avoid choosing sides in personal vendettas for the sake of loving all people. We are called to navigate the places of strife with the words of peace. We are called to help the defenseless in the moment of their greatest need and to cease throwing stones even when stones are deserved. We are called to speak words of truth even if those words defend non-Christians and call Christians to repentance. I believe that this is what dancing in the battle zone looks like, and I believe we are all called to such ministry.

Demons of bitterness or fear in our own hearts are the real ghosts of which we should be wary. Overcoming them gives us freedom to dance in the battle zone—like Jesus did.

-phil wyman (relevant)

Thursday, July 5, 2007

hilton head.

i have been blessed with three amazing best friends :) right now i am in hilton head with beansy, wilksy, and lins. we are all laying in bed... sunburnt to a crisp. this trip has been one of constant laughter :) we went to the lighthouse @ harbor town last night. thank you Jesus for snow crab legs :) tonight we went to the harbor for dinner and fireworks. we all 4 dressed in red white and blue... patriotic & nautical. go ahead and laugh. tomorrow.... beach & shopping. being able to spend the week with beansy (who is on hiatus from nawlins) has been so fun! it has been good to talk to the girls about what has been going on with each of us.... and future decisions we are all making. i love them very much for always being so supportive & wanting only what is best for me. other than that..... what happens in hilton head, stays in hilton head ;)

happy birthday america!

Sunday, July 1, 2007

captivate us.

i started a few days ago reading the book Captivating by John & Stasi Eldridge. grier and i picked her up a copy before she left for tupelo :) i can remember kate reading it for hours while i was reading The Irresistible Revolution (which is life changing. def read it if you have a heart for poverty.) Then Mere sends me a facebook message telling me that she just got done reading Captivating and encourages me to read it (thank you mere bear :) )

so. i start reading it. amazing. like looking through a dirty window into your own heart. one of the chapters talks about how nothing disgusts satan more than beauty of God and everything that stems from it. women are beauty and satan's bitter heart loathes it, so he attacks it constantly with evil. lately i have been so guarded knowing that satan will take anything that brings God glory and turn it evil and worldly. when ever anything negative is planted in my heart or my head, i know that satan is trying to attack me, whether it be anger, jealousy, etc. he makes small things become big deals and we let those things trump whatever beauty is in store. when we fall prey to satan, it is as if we are putting on a wedding dress and running through the mud (go listen to Wedding Dress by Derek Webb, read Redeeming Love by francine rivers, read Hosea. all about how we are God's wife.... and we prostitute ourselves around & He takes us back everytime. beautiful story). it almost devestates me to know that it took my 22 years to learn that when i feel jealousy, anger, bitterness, saddness, depression, etc..... that is satan trying to ruin something beautiful, whether that be two people having deep conversations about the love of Christ, acts of kindness, loving inner city kids, forgiveness, mission trips, etc. i have always just let satan win. i just never looked at it like that. i have such a hard time submitting to God and other people, yet i will submit to satan at the drop of a hat? i hesitate trusting God and other people, yet i will trust satan?

God. I am so sorry. for betrayl, for naivety, for blindness. thank you for conviction. forgiveness. grace. unconditional love.

Your face is beautiful
And Your eyes are like the stars
Your gentle hands have healing
There inside the scars
Your loving arms they draw me near
And Your smile it brings me peace
Draw me closer oh my Lord
Draw me closer Lord to Thee

Captivate us, Lord Jesus
Set our eyes on You
Devastate us with Your presence
Falling down
And rushing river, draw us nearer
Holy fountain consume us with You
Captivate us Lord Jesus, with You

Let everything be lost in the shadows
Of the light of Your face
Let every chain be broken from me
As I’m bound in Your grace
For Your yoke is easy, Your burden is light
You’re full of wisdom, power and might
And every eye will see You.

-Watermark (captivate us)