Friday, February 29, 2008

at the End of It All

"it may be possible for each to think too much of his own potential glory hereafter; it is hardly possible to think too often or too deeply about that of his neighbor. it is a serious thing to live in a society of possible gods & goddesses ... there are no ordinary people. you have never talked to a mere mortal. nations, cultures, arts, civilizations - these are mortal. but it is immortals whom we joke with, worth with, marry, snub and exploit ... next to the sacrament itself, your neighbor is the holiest object presented to your senses."

that is c.s. lewis on the 'weight of glory'. we ought not to treat any person dismissively, should not take the advantage where we can get it at the cost of someone else - he goes on to say that "our love should be costly" - we spend it on immortal souls. i wonder how my life would look different if i treated others with, as lewis says, "the kind of merriment which exists between people who have, from the outset, taken each other seriously - no flippancy, no superiority, no presumption". i want to live that kind of life - aware that each moment & every interaction is an encounter that carries significance beyond today...

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

opinions abound

some people have talent - even great talent - for what they do. but some people have a gift ... it goes beyond ability into something deeper and rarer. you can find it across the board in any field. take writers - lots of best selling novelists, with a talent for storytelling, but very few with the spellbinding gift of gaiman, or rowling.

i think there is a boy with a gift, a real gift, this year on american idol. oh, don't look at me like that... i know i'm not the only one who sits on my couch and fast forwards three quarters of the show. curtis and i sit and make our own judgemental comments (feeling entitled, of course, because he's a genuine muscian and i'm a small time vocalist), largely dismissing people out of hand, wondering why they made it this far. but this boy, david, brought silence to our livingroom. a gift, i'm telling you.

Tuesday, February 26, 2008

the kind of moment i live for

kyra was just down here, ennumerating her marvellous qualities and where she gets them from. her math genius from curtis, her random creative thoughts from mimi (my mom) - so i asked her what she got from me. without pausing a beat, she flung open her arms and said, "beauty!"

oh, how i love that girl.

a gem

one of my favorite fiction writers is neil gaiman - for pure imagination & creativity & storytelling there may be no equal in the world today. he is so entirely enjoyable, on so many levels - his stories sit inside you and quietly grow...i love them. they defy definition. that being said, i just finished one from the library, 'anansi boys'. listen to this...

"each person who ever was or is or will be has a song. it isn't a song that anybody else wrote. it has its own melody, it has its own words. very few people get to sing their own song. most of us fear that we cannot do it justice with our voices, or that our words are too foolish or too honest, or too odd. so people live their songs instead."
i love that! and it's my encouragement to you today - live your song! in the immortal words of sesame street, "sing out loud, sing out strong!" :) if you don't sing your song, who will? the world will be worse off for the loss of your melody weaving in with all the rest...

Sunday, February 24, 2008

the long awaited book review

here we go! i will try to keep it concise for you ... the book in question is 'Consuming Jesus - beyond race & class divisions in a consumer church' by paul louis metzger.

this book will definitely challenge your perceptions of the church and yourself, causing you to ask tough questions that need honest answers. unfortunately, it was harder to read than i expected. metzger's book is intellectual to the point of reading like a phD dissertation, rather than a book for 'every christian'. i read a lot of books, covering a wide range of intellectual rigor and investment, and this was one of the more difficult to navigate. that being said, the subject matter has long been ignored in the evangelical church and it's about time it saw the light of day. they are the things we do without thinking, the attitudes we hold, many times unacknowledged. this book is the ivy league sister, (if you'll pardon my analogy), of shane claiborne's 'irresistible revolution'. where claiborne's arguments for removing the walls, both literal and figurative, between the races and classes in the church are largely experiential & appeal to the heart, metzger's arguments are founded on history and theology and are clearly directed toward the intellect.

it was fascinating to follow the development of the evangelical movement from it's birth, watching how it unintentionally grew up to be one of the segregated institutions in american society. it's an unbearable tragedy. metzger's call to unity within the broader church, the people who say they love and follow Jesus, is clarion clear, and the last half of the book has many beautiful, concrete things to say about how that is possible. it really did make me want to find ways to bridge gaps, and overcome the cultural (within and without the church) divides between not just myself and other christians, but myself and other people. it's a book i wish senior church leaders everywhere would read - because as a "person in the pew" many of the broader stroke, ideological paradigm changes need to come from the men and women who create the systems of the church...some of which go clearly against the heart of the gospel and the heart of Jesus.

all in all, i absolutley believe the ideas within the pages of this book are something that every christian should be concerned with, and should learn more about. but unless you have a strong intellectual bent, it's not an easy read. but i know you've heard me say it before - worthwhile things are rarely easy.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

brief updates

i am done my book review book! i will write the review and post it before the weekend... yay!

lent is pretty much strangling my blog! :) i am trying to be a faithful blogger, but it's tricky! but on the plus side, lent happens in spring, and there are definite signs of spring around here... flowering trees being my current favorite! if only the sun would gather it's strength a wee bit more...

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

bringing sexy back

at 10pm last night, curtis was seized with a desperate need to clean out his closet. so i sat on the bed in my sweats, eating yogurt, and giggled as he declared this t-shirt "unflattering" and that sweater to "hang poorly"and suddenly finding that he has more nice jeans, cords and khakies than one man could ever need! there were at least 4 items he pulled out, looked at and said, "i have never seen this before." ha! crazy man. i shake my head...

also last night, we watched the nbc "original movie event" Knight Rider! oh, how i adored kitt as a girl - i even named my bmx after him. i loved knight rider. even just hearing the theme song made me grin! this 2 hour "event" seemed geared toward being a pilot to a series, so maybe next fall i'll get to relive my childhood an hour a week. truly, it was a little cheesy, a little underwritten (very long commercial breaks), but the car was hot, and at the end, "The Hoff" made a cameo appearance! ha! oh, "micheal", how we loved you in your leather jacket and recklessly curly hair. i wouldn't mind at all adding knight rider to my fall's the best kind of old school! :)

Monday, February 18, 2008

the days fly by!

so my brother and his wife were in town for a whirlwind tour this weekend...phew! we had a great time, largely predicated on the fact that they made sunday dinner for us! hooray for not having to cook your own food! :)

it was so warm today - maybe God was listening when i whined (sorry about the whining part, God) about the weather... and in related news, i hear that there's going to be a total lunar eclipse tomorrow this week! i wonder if i have enough energy to stay up and visit it?

Saturday, February 16, 2008

a heart's true home

i've slowly been collecting things i wanted to blog about, but am throwing them out the window this morning in favor of my biggest 'truth' right now. i am longing for spring. it's not quite here...not quite warm enough to lure me outside, not warm enough for porch sitting. the songbirds and daffodils and budding trees must be acting in defiance of the weather, in the optimism of spring to come, because it's certainly not here. there are those of you who scoff and say, "but you're canadian!" to which i reply, i don't live there anymore, and this is part of the reason of why. too many of my years were spent longing for a warm day; too many months passed without the feeling of sun on my skin; too many weeks passed without fresh air cleaning out the stale, wintry corners of my rooms. and though most would say february is too early for spring, i ache with longing for it. even so, come quickly...

that being said - this is where i grew up. it really is one of the most stunning vista's in all the world. and to hear that they are so aggressively protecting and restoring the environment makes my heart happy.

Thursday, February 14, 2008


wow! yesterday evening, after a lovely friend brought over dinner and we watched a chick flick together, i had some time i could have checked my email before i went to bed. and i didn't! it wasn't even tempting! i went (counting this morning) almost 24 hours without email - voluntarily! i realize this may not seem like a big deal to you, but it's a sign of breaking an addiction with me. i feel so liberated! unchained, able to walk out into the sunshine of the real world and real people and be able to enter into Life. of course, it doesn't mean i'm chucking my email out the window - but maybe that by the end of Lent, i will control it, it will not control me.

"earth's crammed with heaven and
every common bush afire
with God.
but only he who sees takes off his shoes...
the rest sit round it and pick

- elizabeth barrett browning

Wednesday, February 13, 2008


boy, it's tough blogging when you have to squeeze it into the morning or evening, and not when the idea of what you want to say hits you...becauase that idea is never there when you need it again! :)

some of you who know me, and know my voracious appetite for books, may be wondering why i've not already posted my book review here... but guess what? it's a hard book to read! i am having to go slow, and so it's admittedly taking me a while...but i'm more than half done, and it's worthwhile, so give me a couple more days...

happy wednesday!

Saturday, February 09, 2008

i wanna be spry!

Last night we saw the 5 blind boys from Alabama, and mavis staples (who I did not know was in the rock n’ roll hall of fame, nor did I know that she was such a part of dr. kings movement – it was fascinating). But get this – there are still two original members of the blind boys performing – one is their lead singer – and they began in 1939!! THIRTY-NINE. Even if he was only 5, that makes him in his 70’s, and he was SPRY! First of all, he sang his guts out, and then at one point he was hopping and they have 2 sighted players, one of whom came to stand behind him to spot him while he spun like james brown! It was astonishing to see these old men, (the non-original members were old, too, but not that old), so full of passion and ability – they were so fantastic. I was wiped out from clapping and smiling & chair dancing before mavis staples even started. J frankly, I preferred the blind boys to her, which was the opposite of what I was expecting. (unsurprisingly, I’m a fan of the diva.) at the end of the blind boys set, andrew leaned over and asked me, laughing, “as the resident victory expert, do you think they have the victory?” (since I tend to listen to the gospel radio stations for their ability to encourage my heart. there is something vibrant and real and dependent in much of that music that speaks to my soul like little else.) it was interesting to watch the crowd, for whom old, seriously old, school gospel/grassroots soul is an intellectual & musical historical note (we were on campus at duke, I’m sure you can imagine the demographic of the crowd)… because for the old men up on the stage, it definitely was not. the clearly meant every single wavering note with every fiber of their beings. It was a highlight of my year so far! thanks, Andrew & Shanna!

Thursday, February 07, 2008


in the immortal words of one of the funniest people i know - josh hall - "top o' the lent, to ya!"

and for lent, i am trying to find some balance in my life, which includes limiting the time i lose to my (glorious) laptop. i can miss whole chunks of time surfing & emailing & blogging! so today was the first day, and i found it strangely peaceful, actually. until the hour came when i could turn my laptop on and indulge in a little of the technological wonder that is my dear aretha. imagine my horror when not only would she not boot, but rather than booting a message came up that said, "operating system not found". OPERATING SYSTEM NOT FOUND!! what!??! how can that be?!?! i had to restart FOUR TIMES before she miraculously booted properly, and i prayed an honest prayer of thanks to God. could you imagine!?! i would not have coped well with that, trust me.

tomorrow we are going with friends to see 'the five blind boys from alabama' & mavis staples - should be so fun! we're going with fabulous people, and i am very much looking forward to a little escape from life.

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

catalog of early spring

  • merry songbirds are back
  • a cacophony of frogs croaking in the neighborhood creek
  • the front porch in a tank top for an hour reading
  • hot while i walked the dog
  • windows wide open
  • fat, pink buds on the flowering trees
  • daffodils poking 3 inches up from the dirt
  • bluebirds & goldfinches
  • driving with the windows down
  • loving every minute outside, even the ones from the car to the grocery store.

this is definitely worth 5 minutes of your time...

it's a collection of 20 of the best nature photographs of the last decade. they are in turn stunning, amusing & breathtaking. enjoy!

Monday, February 04, 2008

for your amusement...

...i will humiliate myself. :) due to a dearth of blogworthy events, i share one of my lowest moments as a grown up!

one day, when kyra was in preschool many years ago, i had an industrious day. she came home and eventually wandered upstairs to play. after about half an hour of being up there by herself, i heard the toilet flush, followed by her soft, thumping footfalls on the landing. her rosy, cherubic face poked around the corner to where she could see me and she said, "mommy? why is the bathroom clean?"

Saturday, February 02, 2008

maybe it's a bowling alley!

it came! after a small mistake - being shipped the very wrong-est book you could imagine - my book to review in this forum arrived yesterday evening! i read the forward last night before i dozed off, and i think i will have plenty to say ... so stay tuned, faithful readers! :)

in other news, not much to report but hardcore being a parent stuff, which is sort of boring, so never mind.

have a lovely weekend! :)