Friday, January 28, 2005

Portland Day 1

okay so it's not actually the first day but after getting up at 5:30 in the morning there was no way i was going to blog last night. so far the trip has been good. we haven't met with anyone for the church yet but we checked out their stomping grounds. it's really weird, somehow it feels like home here. it feels so much like home that last night it was upsetting. it's going to be hard leaving those punk kids. it's crazy how much they have become a aprt of my life and my heart. i saw lots of teens yesterday in the st john's area. it's was interesting to think that in a couple months those could be the punk kids that are in my life. the thought of being a substitute teacher popped into my head. i'd be great if i could get that kind of job. i guess we'll see.

st john's isn't as ghetto as i had pictured it. it reminds me a lot of fishtown in philly. wish i could elaborate more but les and i are about to actually meet the people from Red Sea. and the real adventure begins....

Monday, January 24, 2005

intergalactic planetary

if i'm going to get any sleep tonight i'm going to have to shut off this racing mind. the voices... THE VOICES... AHHHH! this week at church teddy talked about "The Imposter." that little voice inside all of us that makes us question who we are. you know the one that fears rejection. i thought i was the only nutso who had that ever present annoying voice that drags up things from the day and antagonizes me until i over analyze anything and everything to death. it was an uncomfortable sermon for most people this weekend but a great one to hear. if you're interested you can down load the sermon from Gateway Community Church.

speaking of gateway i wonder how much longer Les and i will be there. i'm completey scrapping the idea of the end of may. not that i don't want to be there but that was my time table not God's. Next week we go to Portland to go check out Red Sea. i'm beside myself with excitement. it's going to be tough leaving but i'm so fired up to get a glimpse of what God has cooked up. in some ways i wish we could just hop on a plane and move there now. after telling people this week that we'll be going it seems like one painful and drawn out goodbye. i know that even in this God is preparing me for something. i'm going to miss those kids so much! i even sunk to a new all time low this morning. i sang a line from "a friends a friend forever" while explaining to the middle schools students that i was leaving. those of you who are familiar with the christian music circuit know exactly what i'm talking about. it is true though and i want it so badly to be true with those punk kids that i love so much.

speaking of punk kids i have no idea what to do with those high school kids. our cute girls left because because the cute boys in the group were not being fully devoted to Christ and the cute boys left because the cute girls are no longer there. now i'm left with the most diverse group ever! the vibe is horrible and i'm at a complete loss. there's one or two students left who really get it, over half that are homeschooled or not to be mean but they're nerdy, and a couple jacked up kids who like to talk through the entire youth service. it is definately not the same group that it once was. i'm still hoping that God will take control of that group and do amazing things before les and i leave. i hope i don't want that for me although it would be awesome to see but i don't want to loose hope and just let it run it's course and dump it on the new persons lap to figure out. i know God wants that group to be healthy. there is this one student and for the past couple of weeks i've seen it in his face that he's totally getting it. he's dorky and introverted but i have this feeling that somehow God is going to catch this kid on fire and he's going to be willing to step out of his comfort zone. it would be so awesome to see that.

on a not so serious note i had quite the chuckle today from a a comment from les. this morning i was rummaging through the sock drawer looking for bandannas to use as blindfolds for a game in j-hi today. les had mentioned that if those kids only knew that i used those to tie him to the bed they would completely freak. i couldn't help but chuckle when the kids were actually wearing them.

i'm getting pretty sleepy and the lyrics "moving to the county gunna eat a lot of peaches" keeps repeating over and over. maybe that means i've dumped enough to actually fall asleep. ahh sleep it's a beautiful thing. i hope you've enjoyed the new addition of links to my post. for me this is huge. i'm surprised i can still turn on a computer. maybe if this dump didn't take next time i'll try to find out how many links i can fit into one itty bitty post.

Wednesday, January 19, 2005

The Power of Silence

today i discover exactly how powerful silence can be and how incredibly freeing it can be to finally let go and talk. it would be great if i was the one finally talking but i can't say that it is. i was able to witness someone very dear to me, my amazing husband, let go today and finally say the thoughts that had been plaguing his mind. maybe he wouldn't describe the thoughts rolling around his head as plaguing but it sure did a number on his confidence. it was amazing to see how the power of the lies that were playing over and over in his head like a broken record diminished simply by him uttering them out loud.

so many times thoughts play in my head over and over again. thoughts that i am ashamed of and that make me ashamed of myself. it's a broken record that says i'm not good enough, i'll never be able to be used by God, i'm a failure and a mistake, blah blah blah. it's thoughts like those that draw me in even deeper into my shell and even more silent. yet that's how those simple lies are able to control me. simply by uttering them to someone that i trust and having them reaffirm that that is not the truth about who i am they lack the power to drive me into despair.

even now as i type this i'm upset. upset that the same person who helped me to realize this today hasn't spend much "quality" time with me in the last couple weeks. yet there is that strong rumble of a voice that plays in the background of my mind that tells me i'm not worth him spending time with me and that i'm being stupid for wanting this request. there's an even louder and more stubborn voice that says i shouldn't need to ask him to spend time with me if he really loved me then he would just want to do it. all just a sand castle of lies.

the most troubling part is that even though i know this i wont break the silence. i wont free myself from this broken record.

here enters the hero sensing something is wrong but nothing... just silence. "are you sure?" nothing but a halfhearted bob of the head as a response.

who knew there could be so many loud voices in the silence.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

jumping off the cliff

the past week seems to have been a whirlwind. we announced at staff meeting that les and i plan on leaving. it seems that simple act has set all kinds of things in motion. it looks like it's going to be portland after all. everything that we hear from the from the pastor there and all that we know about the church is awesome! les and i are supposed to go check it out this month. i don't need to check it out i'm so ready to go. i'm ready to jump off the cliff and wait for God to show up in amazing ways. pastor shaun seems awesome. he must have the gift of prophesy because he seems to speak such truth. i look forward to growing in faith by working as a team with him. anyone who can raise six kids or who chooses to have six kids must be something.

i don't want to leave my stduents or the families at gateway but i'm so ready to go. i'm ready to start the next chapter in my life. it will be interesting living so close to brett and his family. i wonder how much i'll see him. i wonder if we'll still be such good friends now that i've changed so much. we can never have the same friendship we once did before we got married but i wonder what it will look like now. i wonder what les will think of brett. i wonder what i'll think of amber. i wonder if somehow if the brett and amber will eventually be involved with red sea. i know amber is a strong christian and i don't think brett is ready to live it out yet but i wonder. the possibilities are very exciting. i can't wait to see what God has in store for us. it may be sooner than we think.

have i ever mentioned how awesome married life is? i often wonder why les and i have taken to marraige so easily. will it always be this way? it will be strange to have a job apart from les. so many people think it's wierd that we can work together. close together. his cube is right across from mine. i couldn't imagine working at gateway without him being here. we just get along so well. it's weird how some couples can work so well and how it's such a struggle for others. how do you know if you are deceiving yourself during the dating process? with les i just knew he was the guy i was supposed to marry even though i freaked out through the entire process. is there an ideal partner for everybody? should people wait until they know it's the one? it's interesting to me how this whole thing works out. all i know for sure is that i am very grateful for the gift God has given les and i.


Tuesday, January 04, 2005

whew!

i just got done having a meeting with my boss about how this year has gone. this year has been a most interesting journey. i look back now and i realize how amazing it really was. God has really been preparing me and les for the future. i was able to talk about all the changes that have happened back in crossroads and be excited about it. even excited about our high school group. oh the possibilities of finding the thing that actually works with that group. God has grown me a lot in ministry nad in my marraige to les. i haven't done much growing with him though. i'm still trying to figure out who God really is. i know he is so amazing and that i never want to do life without him. i just haven't been able to see him for who he really is yet. my image of who he is is all distorted with the dysfunction on my parents. i've tried to look beyond that but i have nothing else to look towards to give me a glimpse of who God really is. marraige has helped a little. in fact it has helped a lot. i've never been loved by anyone the way i've been loved by les. nobody has ever treated me as highly as he does. nobody has ever grieved that i've had to face some of the things that i've had to face. i don't really understand why i deserve this kind of love or why he loves me the way he does but it just is. i can't see in myself what other people see. i can't see in myself what God sees. i can't phathom how God could love me even more than les does. but he does. i know this. rationally i know who God is and i could explain it to anyone but i don't really get it yet. i'm content to not fully understanding right now. i'm confident that over time God will reveal himself to me.

i'm nervous and excited about what this year holds. next week they will be posting for my job. if les and i decided to stay i know they would keep us on as staff. i really do love my job. this would be the easy thing to do though. i know that God has called us to do something else. it's exciting but it's scary not to know what that next thing is. it's hard to tell people that we will be leaving wihtout being able to tell people where. i can't wait to see what pops up! maybe it will be yucky houston after all.