Sunday, August 29, 2010

Nostalgia is beckoning me, so I return to photographs and memories...

Today is one of those days, when everything and everyone dear, just seem so very faraway.

It's hard seeing someone everyday and then going without seeing them at all, for years at a time.
It's hard talking to someone everyday and then going without doing so and not knowing when you'll talk again.

It's a night, where I just feel more attune to thoughts, such as these.
A night when I feel more sentimental than usual. I know, it doesn't seem possible, but it's true.

Photographs and Memories, Jason Reeves

I keep your picture by my bed for when im feeling sad
And i dont know why i would be.
The way your smile looks so real
I feel like i could start to understand your grace.
And i dont understand why you're
Not here with me.
And i dont even wanna know where else
You'd be.

Cause i have photographs and memories of the times
When you weren't on my mind and i was alone.
And i have poetry and drawings of my life
When you weren't on my side and i didn't know
Just what is love...

Writing moments on the wall with different colors
Keeps my mind away from missing you.
And i can't wait to fall asleep to slip into my dreams
Where we can dance upon a star..
And i will be as patient as a boy in love could ever be.
Cause i don't feel like i was real until you were
A part of me.

I need you back, i need you back
I need you here.
I need your smile, i need your eyes
I need you dear.
Cause every line on your face makes a beautiful maze
For my eyes to trace...

My company, my photographs and memories...

I know I am right where I need to be, but that doesn't mean I can say, I have this all figured out.
There are days when it's hard to just simply get through; there are days when in my heart of hearts I don't even know what to do.

Praise be to Him, who loves me all the same, who sees me as a woman of promise, His beloved dame.
Praise be to my God, my King, who is enough for all of me.

He is enough for the woman stricken with "the missing" of a country, so foreign to all she knows.
He is enough for the little girl with dreams and secrets, that she'll only admit in prose.
He is enough for the woman, that is overly sentimental on days such as these.
He is enough for the little girl, who is scared to death she won't be enough, and that she will displease.
He is enough for the woman who is afraid of falling in love and being alone.
He is enough for the little girl who wants to shout at the top of her lungs of your glory, to take it the nations,
for YOU, to be made known.

He is enough for the woman and the little girl in me, and this is one of the moments,
when I trust, and I will not flee.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Much Can Be Gained, from the Little Prince...

The Little Prince, is such a beautiful piece of literature. I read it through its' entirety last night, at the recommendation from someone very dear to me. I started to read, and I couldn't stop until I reached the end. The words tugged on my heart and reached out to me as if I myself, was part of the story and yes, the tears came with that of a "good book, a great film, a birthday card, I weep."

“And when your sorrow is comforted (time soothes all sorrows), you will be content that you have known me."

"It is such a secret place, the land of tears."

"And now here is my secret, a very simple secret:
It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye."

"But if you come at just any time, I shall never know at what hour my heart is to be ready to greet you."

“You are beautiful, but you are empty,” he went on. “One could not die for you. To be sure, an ordinary passerby would think that my rose looked just like you– the rose that belongs to me. But in herself alone she is more important than all the hundreds of you other roses: because it is she that I have watered; because it is she that I have put under the glass globe; because it is she that I have sheltered behind the screen; because it is for her that I have killed the caterpillars (except the two or three that we saved to become butterflies); because it is she that I have listened to, when she grumbled, or boasted, or even sometimes when she said nothing. Because she is my rose. It is the time you have wasted for your rose that makes your rose so important.”

Soneto XVII, by Pablo Neruda...

No te amo como si fueras rosa de sal, topacio
o flecha de claveles que propagan el fuego:
te amo como se aman ciertas cosas oscuras,
secretamente, entre la sombra y el alma.

Te amo como la planta que no florece y lleva
dentro de sí, escondida, la luz de aquellas flores,
y gracias a tu amor vive oscuro en mi cuerpo
el apretado aroma que ascendió de la tierra.

Te amo sin saber cómo, ni cuándo, ni de dónde,
te amo directamente sin problemas ni orgullo:
así te amo porque no sé amar de otra manera,

sino así de este modo en que no soy ni eres,
tan cerca que tu mano sobre mi pecho es mía,
tan cerca que se cierran tus ojos con mi sueño.

This sonnet and my reading of The Little Prince, took me back to something my dear friend, Niki, had written long ago and left for me... to remind me to keep hoping:

"Don't hate it. God doesn't place desires in your heart for no reason. If you love something, it's because God already knows who your soulmate is and He created your hearts to match. Don't deny His power by not having the faith that He has someone for you that will not be someone you settle for or have to pursue on your own. When this man (and amazing he will be) finds you, he is going to be so madly drawn to you that his heart will pause when you enter a room and smiles will light up his face when you cross his mind and his breath will catch the moment he realizes he sees love in your eyes. Don't sell God short, love. It's okay to focus on other things and try not to let it overtake you, but it's not okay to say "I'm just not getting married." He has more in mind for you than you can ever imagine; a relationship that is a ministry and an encouragement to everyone who sees it. Don't give up."

So with all of these things, what it all comes down to tonight, is that I am not letting the enemy rob me of my hope, my zeal, my passion, my dream. I used to just claim the easy way out; I used to tell my heart to settle that loneliness was my only answer...but God has placed many people in my life, these days, to reach out and say that isn't His way at all. Choosing misery over life, is nothing but a tragedy. I have been there. I have deadened my desires and placed myself and my heart in the shadows, but that is no way to live. Instead, I am going to retain and regain my hope, that was once lost. I am going to move forward, in light of the truth, that I am an exception.

I Believe in You Lyrics, Bethany Dillon...

When there's nothing to believe in, I belive in you
Forget the past and let my hand in yours be the proof
Though the strong could be my company, you're the one I choose
So remember, I believe in you

I know it feels like every eye is watching you
Waiting for you to fall, expecting you to lose
But I see victory, so all you have to do
Is remember, I believe in you

I believe, even when I see you crying
I believe, let me dream for you
When nothing comes from trying
Remember, I believe in you

There will come a day when love will lift you out of here
There will come a day when love will bring the truth
There will come a day when love will free you from your fear
And you'll remember, I believe in you

I believe, even when I see you crying
I believe, let me dream for you
When nothing comes from trying
Remember, I believe in you

So I believe. I will keep believing, because You give me something to believe in. I believe in you. I believe that love is meant to be felt, and that everyone deserves to feel it.

Pablo Neruda, puts it quite beautifully, so much so that it deserves to be mentioned in this blog more than once, "I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where. I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride; so I love you because I know no other way."

"But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you." I am finally believing that this could quite possibly be said of me. It's been a long time coming and the journey isn't finished here, I will keep pressing onward...toward what is ahead of me.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

"Too many things are occurring for even a big heart to hold,"

I have been spending a lot of time here. It's what I gravitate toward to at night, when everyone else is off to sleep, and I am left awake with my thoughts and a computer for my faithful company:

Today God graced me with a few reminders:

I have seen more butterflies in the past two days, then I have in a year's time, or I could have easily overlooked them in the past. Every time I would look out the window a butterfly would be fluttering on by with joyful ease and delight. Every time I would venture outside a butterfly would be beckoning me for a glance. So what do I make of this?

  • God is gently reminding me that He is making all things new, in His time. That this isn't all there is, that He is in this.

My eyes fell upon a scripture that I am sure I have read many times, but this time it took upon a whole new meaning, for where I am. "Remember those earlier days after you had received the light, when you stood your ground in a great contest in the face of suffering. Sometimes you were publicly exposed to insult and persecution; at other times you stood side by side with those who were so treated . You sympathized with those in prison and joyfully accepted the confiscation of your property, because you knew that you yourselves had better and lasting possessions. So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded. You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised. For in just a very little while, "He who is coming will come and not delay. But my righteous one will live by faith. And if he shrinks back, I will not be pleased with him. But we are not of those who shrink back and are destroyed, but of those who believe and are saved." Hebrews 10:32-39
  • God took me aside last night and used this scripture to gently remind me of what it means to trust, to have faith, to rest in Him. God used these words to tell me that I don't have to shrink back, that I don't have to run. That I can be still, that I can believe.
  • God holds everything together; He holds my heart in His hands.
My eyes are being stung with tears as I write these reminders, it's almost as if I am hearing them again, for the very first time. With these reminders, an undeniable since of hope returns to me. All is not lost.

"But the point is this: Paul didn't know where he was going, but he did know why. His compass was the heart of God." Once again, what I am left with is the obvious...I am plagued with uncertainty, but maybe plagued shouldn't be the term anymore, instead I am left with the obvious, that I am blessed with uncertainty.

"Moments come and go, and often the opportunities that lie within them leave with them. Time is a tyrant. It consumes choices left unmade. The only choices that live are the ones that are taken, but there can be momentary delays. The good news is that when you choose the good, when you choose to move with God, nothing can stop you from fulfilling God's purpose for your life." -Chasing Daylight, Erwin McManus

And with this, I am reminded, that I am more than a conqueror through Him, that loves me. Who loves me, even me. So I will choose to move with God tonight, and walk on in faith and move from these fears that want to take hold of all I am. He burdens the heart that He calls, so I will go.

Tonight's reminder of the Story:

84 and counting...

84. I wear my bracelets, at all times, except for the times when I am in Mexico and a child asks me for one.
85. One of my most favorite moments, was surprising my best friend, Kristi Lee, in the airport.
86. The first time upon hearing a song, I often immediately look up the lyrics.
87. My Starbucks drink of choice is a Mocha Frappucino, with no whip cream.
88. I have a hilarious family and I have a blast visiting them in the small town of Caruthersville, Missouri.
89. I never truly had a problem with procrastination until I was in college.
90. Some of my greatest memories have been being spontaneous at all hours of the night with my dearest friends; the pictures of course, are not flattering.
91. I make a home wherever God takes me: Owensboro, KY, Evansville, IN, Highland and Valparaiso, IN, Conway, AR, Baja California, MX, Punta del Este, Uruguay, Buenos Aires, Argentina, and Santiago, Chile.
92. Many times it is easier for me to write what I am feeling, rather than talk about what I am feeling.
93. I hate the phone. I am just now beginning to tolerate its' usage for long phone conversations at my age of 23.
94. I love fireflies. Seeing them brings back my fondest memories of summer.
95. I have been in almost 30 different airports, and with such travels...I have become quite fond of traveling alone. It's somewhat freeing.
96. I sing along with my radio while making my commute.
97. I have always had a dream of teaching in the Inner-City one day, having my own Freedom Writers experience.
98. My favorite actresses are Julia Roberts, Cameron Diaz, and Drew Barrymore.
99. I love compiling things to send in packages to my friends. Everyone needs a bit of whimsy in their lives, and I like to do my part in contributing to such: dinosaurs, ninjas, and much more...
100. I love going barefoot, especially in the sand.
101. I have an overwhelming fear of hospitals, ever since my grandfather spent three months in the hospital...all beginning on his birthday and spending the Christmas holiday in a hospital room, and him leaving us just a few days afterward. It's really hard for me to go into hospitals alone, I need a hand to hold.
102. One of the hardest moments of my life was hearing that Juan Carlos and Efrain were fighting for their lives on the other side of the world. I can still see them lost in the dense sheets, their fragile little bodies holding onto dear life. They are living miracles, I tell you.
103. I love love love vocabulary, maybe this has something do with my love for writing.

Some quotes I found just the other day, that deserve honorable mention:

"I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where. I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride; so I love you because I know no other way." Pablo Neruda

"The Christian does not think God will love us because we are good, but that God will make us good because He loves us." C. S. Lewis

"How wonderful it is that nobody need wait a single moment before starting to improve the world."
"Memories mean more to me than dresses." Anne Frank

"...How many loved your moments of glad grace,
And loved your beauty with love false or true,
But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,
And loved the sorrows of your changing face..."

"Though I am old with wandering
Through hollow lands and hilly lands,
I will find out where she has gone,
And kiss her lips and take her hands;
And walk among long dappled grass,
And pluck till time and times are done
The silver apples of the moon,
The golden apples of the sun."
William Butler Yeats

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

One Story, One Remedy:

"The best remedy for those who are afraid, lonely or unhappy is to go outside, somewhere where they can be quite alone with the heavens, nature and God. Because only then does one feel that all is as it should be and that God wishes to see people happy, amidst the simple beauty of nature. As longs as this exists, and it certainly always will, I know that then there will always be comfort for every sorrow, whatever the circumstances may be. And I firmly believe that nature brings solace in all troubles."

There's a welcome silence that sits between You and I, here. There are tears, for not knowing what might come and for what might come. Will this just be two hearts hurt again, or will there be a different end? And there is just a silent revelry, for my present company.

II Chronicles 15:2, "The LORD is with you when you are with him. If you seek him, he will be found by you..."

Here is what I found in my latest re-reading of Desire: "True surrender is not an easy out, calling it quits early in the game. This kind of surrender comes only after the night of wrestling. It comes only after we open our hearts to care deeply. Then we choose to surrender, or give over, our deepest desires to God. And with them we give over our hearts, our deepest selves. The freedom and beauty and rest that follow are among the greatest of all surprises." Desire, John Eldredge

Zechariah 1:3, "Therefore tell the people: This is what the LORD Almighty says: 'Return to me,' declares the LORD Almighty, 'and I will return to you,' says the LORD Almighty.

I am at point, where I believe, but I need help with my unbelief. "You work all things together for the good of those who love You." Oh, how I love You, my love for You grows with each passing day. So why, why am I so afraid? My heart matters to You, and You are the author and perfecter of my faith. Alas, I am at a loss as to what to say, but that I am merely afraid.

I Peter 5:10, "In his kindness God called you to share in his eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus. So after you have suffered a little while, he will restore, support, and strengthen you, and he will place you on a firm foundation."

So I will look to You, with my weak faith on my feeble knees. I will look to You, and I will not cease. I will look to You with eyes full of tears....I will give You, all of my fears. I am giving You this heart of mine that is feeling love, again. I am giving you my heart, who I am, and who I have been. This is Your's for the taking, even it comes down to my heart breaking.

"I don't think of all the misery, but of the beauty that still remains."
Anne Frank (Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl)

Romans 8:29-30, "God knew what he was doing from the very beginning. He decided from the outset to shape the lives of those who love him along the same lines as the life of his Son. The Son stands first in the line of humanity he restored. We see the original and intended shape of our lives there in him. After God made that decision of what his children should be like, he followed it up by calling people by name. After he called them by name, he set them on a solid basis with himself. And then, after getting them established, he stayed with them to the end, gloriously completing what he had begun."

"God, You know where I've been
You were there with me then
You were faithful before
You'll be faithful again
I'm holding Your hand"

"Reminders of the story are everywhere-in films and novels, in children's fairy tales, in the natural world around us, and in the stories of our own lives. In fact, every story or movie or song or poem that has ever stirred your soul is telling you something you need to know about the Sacred Romance....Bombarded by thousands of messages every day, each one of them marked urgent, we leave behind the truly important things, the only refuge for our hearts.

God is speaking to us more often than we imagine. These are the treasures we must hide in our hearts-sew them into our jackets if need be- for the dark hours that may come. As Buechner points out:
"His word to us is both recoverable and precious beyond telling."

Reminders of the story, were found here tonight:

Monday, August 23, 2010

A Passion, not her own...

Her eyes tell a story,
of pain long lost, though a coming glory.
They speak of a knowing and an ache, that comes and goes,
they speak of wanting a life to be more than what she now knows.

There is a calling, bigger than her own,
there is a place, that is calling her home.

It is with the children, around the world,
the little girls, delighting to be twirled,
the little boys, delighting to be flown,
the little children, just crying out to be known.

This is a passion,
something that cannot and will not become rationed.
This is a passion,
something that You, alone, could have fashioned...

She will venture with confidence,
she will love, love until she is spent.
She will move for You,
and this, this she will pursue.

Cause those deep chocolate eyes,
stole her heart long ago, it's a truth that she can no longer deny.
Cause those beautiful people, beckoned her heart to finally have a voice-
and she has a choice:

to leave and walk into the unknown,
to stay and claim, she can't do this on her own...

There's a love there, that has a hold on her heart here...
there's a love there, and Your presence has never felt so near.

She will go, and she will love,
she will rest in knowing that this passion is Your's, from above.
She will move, and she will stay,
she will begin to say everything her heart has been longing to say.
She will make it her home,
and resist the need to roam.

Because You were found years ago, in their deep chocolate, joyful eyes,
Because You were found years ago, in a mother's passionate cries,
Because You were found years ago, in the one step it took, out of a van,
Because You were found years ago, and that is when this hold on her heart began....

Someday soon, You are going to take her home...

“When I said, "My foot is slipping," your love, O LORD, supported me. When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought joy to my soul.” Psalm 94:18-19.

"Sometimes you have to watch somebody love something before you can love it yourself.
It is as if they are showing you the way." Donald Miller

"Too many things are occurring for even a big heart to hold." William Butler Yeats

Sunday, August 22, 2010

In the Company, of Silence...

Silence sits between the two,
and these precious moments, have been few.
Distance has always hindered,
everything to be said, everything to be heard.

Though now, here they are,
and still the distance, is so very, far.
One just needs a hand to hold,
and the other, at times, just needs to be told...
that it's okay, to let down the walls,
that it's okay, to feel it all.

And they sit before a screen,
where little of the light in their eyes, can be seen.
And they sit, and they wait,
and the feelings, just don't seem to abate.

She sits on one end, and he on the other, both holding onto their dreams...
when they can finally, meet again, and tend to the once broken, seams.
When they can finally be in one place,
and just, just embrace.

Because then and only then, will the over-thoughts be to rest-
on that day, when they meet again,
then and only then.

The goodbyes will fade from their eyes,
and the light will replace the fogs of wondering, as to what may become, of these ties.

Until then, her heart sings, "just a few more months, and we'll be fine...,
don't you dear, don't you look behind.

We'll wait, for such a time is this,
we'll be open, because nothing at all should be missed,
we''ll sit together, just as we are...
whether near or far,
we'll trust that our Maker knows what He is doing,
because all things, He is renewing."

"Whatever is in front of me, I'll choose to sing Hallelujah."

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Absence makes the heart grow fonder...

"For June who loved this garden from Joseph who always sat beside her.
Some people do spend their whole lives together."

I found a new song today, "Out Loud," by Dispatch.
Within just a matter of seconds I fell in love with the lyrics:

Would you be the wind to blow me home
Would you be a dream
On the wings of a poem
And if we were walking through a crowd
Well you know I'd be proud

If you call my name out loud
Do you suppose that I would come running
Do you suppose I'd come at all
I suppose I would

And if we were walking
Down a dead end street
Would you be the one to let our eyes meet
Or would you just keep on walking
Down to the turn around
'cause you know I'd be proud


And if I was gone from the land we know
Would be the dawn
And let your beauty still show
And if you were walking
And heard the cold night coming
Would you call my name
'cause you know I'd come running

It's been a tough week; it seems to have taken its' toll on me. I cannot seem to find many words, as I sit here, and delve into my thoughts. My heart has been dealing with scattered worries. Worries of friends that are struggling and hiding behind it all. Worries of never finishing these two Spanish classes, how did I get through a full class load, I wonder? Worries of what may or not come. Worries. Useless worries. Worries, that accomplish nothing...but end up stirring my heart to race and weariness to overcome me. God's in this, and that is truly the only thing has kept me pressing on these past few days. He has proven faithful in the midst of the worries, the wonders, the weariness.

  • It is such a blessing to have people in your life that truly, know how you feel, without you saying anything at all: A dear woman mentioned this to me the other day, "You are downhearted and you have a right to be. You are trying to make changes, but nothing seems to be working, no one is showing up." How did she know? I didn't have to say anything at all, this tells me that God knew that is what I needed to hear...
  • "Absence makes the heart grow fonder." That quote has stayed with me this entire week..Nostalgia has crept from the corners of my heart and reached out to me. Sure, I have tried to sway my thoughts the other way, but it's been hard these days. It's all so uncertain and there is a wait. I guess tonight is a night, where I am speaking from the part of my heart that is afraid, yet all the more, hopeful.

"Jesus is wild, amazing, unpredictable. He touches people He shouldn't, He weeps with whores and dances with poor people. He heals what is broken. And doesn't talk an awful lot about doctrine. Instead, He talks a lot about faith-the kind that means you step out into the unknown. You are willing to try to love, to give up some of your power, to let go of control. To trust something. To even begin to believe deep down in your guts somewhere what God seems to be saying over and over: It's your willingness to trust something that makes you well. You are enough. It is enough." -Rick Diamond

Startled at all she is feeling within,
the walls upon her heart, they seem to be wearing thin.
All of this, is something she always longed for,
but never thought the day would come for such an open door.

There are hopes that rise and fall, with the beat of her heart,
there are fears in the midst, that she longs would flee and just depart...
Cause these feelings are so hard to ignore,
they've been all the more, gently restored.

So she waits, her soul and her heart, they wait for You,
because You make all things new.
So in this moment, when nostalgia reaches out to hold her hand,
may You give her heart strength, and her feeble knees the courage to stand.

Give this girl reason...
to keep on clinging to this precious, new season.
Help her see,
right where You want her to be.
Give her strength,
to let him in, and not keep him at arm's length.

Direction is needed,
so Your desires might be heeded.
It's all she can do to be still, to hold her heart out in her hands,
for fear she might not be able to withstand...

what You have in mind,
so won't You remind-
her that You are in this,
that her heart isn't something You dismiss.

Her heart matters to You, it's time to step out from behind these walls,
it's time to leave the fears behind her, leave it all.
Perfect love, it casts out all fear...
she knows this, and knows that You are near.
That's what will give her confidence in this unknown,
that, and knowing she isn't alone.

"Somewhere we know that without silence words lose their meaning, that without listening speaking no longer heals, that without distance closeness cannot cure." -Henri Nouwen

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Spontaneity, does the heart good.

Last night, I received a text message from my dear cousin, Jacque, with an invitation to join her and our Grandma for a girls night. What a welcome invitation, perfect timing. And for that, I thank You, because it was Your doing, I am sure. I ended up pulling up in front of my Grandma's apartment and was welcomed by my very missed cousin at the door. Two Starbucks in hand for the ladies, and my Grandma had the purest sense of delight and surprise on her face. It's one of those moments, that you will just never be able to forget.

In that moment she wasn't near her eighty years, she was a girl just into her twenty-somethings. A girl whose bright smile, lit up her quaint little place that is her's to call her own, an endearing sense of accomplishment, courage, and pure joy.

And so what did three girls just entering their twenty-somethings do? We talked about where we've been, where we're going, what we're doing. We laughed. We dreamed. We fancied the thoughts that most girls thrive upon, but us, we are just getting used to the idea. We spoke of past memories and talked of the future with bright eyes, full of hopeful expectation. We admitted to not having everything figured out, but wouldn't it be nice? We ate macaroni and cheese at 1:15 in the morning with toast. We watched "Say Yes to the Dress" and talked about what we would do in the place of these crazy girls willing to spend an outrageous amount of money on their dresses. And we laughed some more, fully convinced that when our day comes we would like to spend as little as we can, and turn that into something beautiful. We reminisced of the glory days when I would pretend to be sick...just so I could venture over to Grandma's house and play restaurant/store and pretend to be Mary Kate and Ashley Olsen. Not a moment went to waste, in this dear reunion.

We told ourselves to embrace eating, for what it is, to forgo the calorie count and drink the tradition worthy, Mt. Dew. We talked and talked until 2 in the morning, and Grandma finally bid us goodnight. To which Jacque and I switched places so Grandma could finally sleep, and finished off our chat after three this morning. We finished off our time together with the movie, "He's Just Not That Into You" and breakfast.

Amidst our conversation I realized that, I like to think these days.

I like to let my dreams take flight, instead of keeping them held up inside my heart. I like to think about what may come, even though I am somewhat scared at all the uncertainty it brings. I guess I have held back for so long, it feels freeing to just let go, to be open, to finally....let down the walls that I have held up for far too long.

"Nothing you love is lost. Not really. Things, people-they always go away, sooner or later. You can't hold them, any more than you can hold moonlight. But if they've touched you, if they're inside you, then they're still yours. The only things you ever really have are the ones you hold inside your heart.”

I have my hopes and my dreams about many, many things. I am beginning to realize that's okay. Is it difficult? Yes, very. The time, the distance, they all play a significant role. But God has a purpose in this, and that brings such great comfort to my timid heart.