Thursday, August 27, 2009

Oh, sweet irony.

In my packing, I came across an old notebook, in which I had started making a list, "Places to See Before I Die". I only came up with 3 places; India, Canada, and Mexico. Guess I can cross one of those off...

Sunday, August 23, 2009

So long, old friend...

With all of our family going separate ways, we recently realized none of us can keep our long-time feline companion. Ciao, Cleo! Glad to know you're going to a good home.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Music AND Lyrics?

Recently in a conversation with a friend, I made a reference to a lyric that had just been sung, and she looked surprised, and couldn't figure out what I was talking about. Through discussing it, I realized that somehow, she just doesn't notice lyrics unless they're highly repetitive. To be sure, this is not hard to do with some musical genres, (i.e. rap) and it certainly makes listening to songs with good beats and lyrics that you're morally opposed to easier. But knowing what exactly you're singing (or listening to) contributes so much to the music! Not to say you should only listen to songs you know the lyrics to; how else would you learn new songs? But I think we need to pay attention to what we're listening to.
Imagine talking with someone who wouldn't give you a relevant reply; did nothing except smile and nod unless you tediously repeated whatever you were saying...some might call that a one-sided conversation. I suppose that's what bothers me so much about people who listen to music without listening to it. Music just seems like something that needs to be appreciated and valued for both for its sound and its meaning.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Bite your tongue?

The ability to remain silent can be a virtue, but there's a fine line between reserve and cowardice. When to speak? What to say? It seems easier to just say nothing. Is it fear or wisdom that makes me hesitant? As much as my inhibitions are sometimes frustrating, I'm glad they're there. Without them, I would likely say even more things I would regret.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Ok, the pears are making me hungry.

Just some pictures I took recently...

Monday, August 3, 2009

1 down...

I just finished "reading" the first Harry Potter book (Sorcerer's Stone; it was an audio book on youtube) I now almost regret boycotting the whole Harry Potter scene all these years...but the fun that came from aggravating my obsessed friends was worth it. As much as I agree with the Christian world's censure of the series because of the blatant witchcraft, Rowling is a very good storyteller. Though it's not commonly thought of as such in our culture, I believe writing is an art form. After all, what separates classic literature from harlequin novels? What makes a book stand the test of time? Can the incorrect worldview or bad subject matter of an otherwise good author be overlooked for the sake of enjoying the work itself?

"In the presentation of an artwork, there are two people involved-the creator, and the beholder. It is possible for a creator to craft a painting of great beauty, recognized as pleasing by all eyes, and for the creator to claim, in his own heart, all the glory...However, a beholder of the same work, who recognizes God as the source and means of all the pleasing creativity fleshed out through the hand of a man, could respond with praise to God. Praise to God for God's work in creating the artist with such skill. Praise to God for a veil lifted and a truth now seen through a work of art. Praise to God for the grace given to that artist as he was disciplined in the work of his hands. Praise to God that there are people who can express truths in ways that are different from how he is able to express them. Praise to God for his diversification of talent and function within mankind. Praise to God for all the enjoyment He gives us to experience in artistic expression...Both Godly-worship and idolatry can result from beholding the same work."
(The Affections of the Heart in Art-Jason Harms)

That is how I can redeem my reading, or enjoyment of any art form. This is how I'm called to live out all aspects of my life, doing all to the the glory of God. Discernment is indeed important, and sin must be called sin. But choosing to banish all things someone finds questionable stinks of legalism. I praise God for art, and pray that it be used to spread His fame. Can I read books full of witchcraft to the glory of God? Lord, give me grace. I've still got 6 left.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Hoping for a ram...

As I was updating my resume today, it occurred to me: I've never had a "real" job before. I've always been asked to work for friends of mine. I've either been paid cash or in some creative fashion. (i.e. my "scholarship" from VAC for being the ministry assistant) No taxes, no benefits. It's worked splendidly. But this time I have no reputation to fall back on, and have to compete for on-campus jobs because they're all I can do on my student visa.
Jehovah-Jireh--The LORD sees.
Am I crazy to put myself into this position? No. God will provide.