Sunday, June 29, 2008

Weirdest Week Ever

Wow. These past 10 days have been some of the strangest in my life. Not like abnormal, grotesque weird kind of strange, but big-things-are-happening-all-at-once-and-it's-weird kind of strange. Some of them I will be sharing with you, dear Internet, and some I will not (no offense).

First off, my great-grandmother died and I attended my first funeral. Then my grandma moved out. She had been living with us for various reasons, and made a sudden decision to live with her husband again. It was kind of a shock for all of us, but it's done now.

What I feel is probably the biggest thing is the sudden absence in my heart of a desire I have had for a long time. Although it's not really an absence, just a severe deintensification of that desire, although I don't think that's an accurate description either, not least of all because I don't think deintensification is a word. For a long time I have had an overwhelming desire to be married. I know it's a little weird, but I grew up with Beauty and the Beast and Lord of the Rings (there are some pretty epic love stories in there!). Also, my parents provided what I must say (in a totally unbiased manner of course) is one of the best examples of marriage out there. Why wouldn't I want to get married? To have a person love you enough to spend the rest of their life with you is the ultimate blessing, in my opinion, one that I thought I didn't have.

I'm beginning to realize that the lesson that God has been nudging at me, and occasionally outright shoving, for a while is that he loves me not just with a cliche "Jesus loves me, this I know" childlike love. Don't get me wrong, there's nothing wrong with the unconditional love of a child, but most of the time, children don't recognize the faults of those they love. You might object and say, "Jesus doesn't recognize our faults either. He's forgiven them," but that's not the way I see it at all. God loves us and pursues us in spite of our faults, and in some cases because of them. For instance, my brother is extremely stubborn (a trait that I share), and in some arguments we've had, nothing could be worse. He refuses to admit that he's wrong (or that I'm right) even when the evidence is staring him in the face. On the other hand, he also has a strong sense of justice, which has made him stubborn against things happening at school and elsewhere that he knows is not right. My point is, God not only recognizes our faults, but he utilizes them by guiding us through events that we might not have been able to survive without the faults he created us with. It's hard for me to explain how real God's love is to me now. It's thick, it's deep, it's tangible. He cherishes me. He loves me with passion. Regrettably, that is not a word you hear often in Sunday School.

The bottom line is that I have realized that, far better than any human companion (although I think Mr. Darcy might come close :D), God is going into the relationship with a full comprehension of the person I am, and he will never stop cherishing me. In other words, I am beginning to learn to let myself be fulfilled through God alone. Trust me, I am extremely aware of and sorry for how cheesy and sappy this all is, but I can't help it. I've got into a habit that I want you to try. Everytime you do something stupid or make yet another mistake or you're just having a bad day, just whisper to yourself, "The God of the universe loves me." Meditate on that, or in less elegant language, chew on that. Understand that the 'me' that you are talking about is a 'me' with innumerable faults and sins to account for, and that the 'love' that you are talking about is a love so passionate and so undeniable that God in essence split himself, he sacrificed his Son to save you.

Wow. Didn't mean for that to turn into a sermon. I just start writing and it keeps on coming.

Anyways, I meant to write about both Nemesis and Crime and Punishment, but that will have to be another entry. I am rather tired, and there is work in the morning.

Night all!

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Whatever - I can't think of titles

I thought I would say a quick hello, as I promised a post Monday, and it is now Wednesday (not that you're disappointed or anything :)). I sort of vaguely hinted at my troubles at getting into Crime and Punishment. I think it's just being lazy. I think I'm on the third chapter now? Not great progress if I expect to get through a whole shelf in a month and a half and this is only my third book in six weeks. However, I will buckle down and read tomorrow on my break, and hopefully after. I am also beginning to learn French, so even if I'm not reading, I'm not being totally unproductive.

However, I did say this must be quick, and I am now going to make good on my promise to buckle down and read. I know, I'm not rambling for paragraphs on end, slightly disappointing, but there will be some rambling next time!

Until then!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Hello again!

As I so aptly titled my last post (and I say that with extreme modesty), life does indeed go on. Since I last communicated with you, dear Internet, much has occurred. My great-grandmother (my dad's grandma) has died, and my parents are currently in Roanoke sorting through things. I know that Dad and his sister were the sole beneficiaries, but I really have no clue what that means. Basically I think they get all the chores.

Is that a horrible attitude to have about death? Life goes on? I mean, I am sure Grandmother will be missed, but she was in pain, and we could see that a year or so ago. It was a slow decline into congestive heart failure, and while I'm not sure it was the horrible, terrifying torture that description of a year in pain implies, it is a bit of a relief to know that it's over for her.

In other news, I completed Emma about a week ago, I think, and have since read another book. Emma was really excellent, as I would expect from Austen. Emma and Mr. Knightley made great counterparts, and all of my favorite parts of the book involved them. I also found a line that is a great example of Austen's humor, and a great piece of writing.

"Mr. Knightley seemed to be trying not to smile; and succeeded without difficulty upon Mrs. Elton's beginning to talk to him."

Even if you know nothing of the two characters involved, it is funny.

Tomorrow my brother, sister and I are joining my parents in Roanoke, so I will try to post again Monday. I have to discuss the other book I read, Nemesis, by Agatha Christie, and my difficulties in beginning Crime and Punishment.

Until then!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Life Goes On

How do you do? For some reason I'm thinking My Fair Lady right now. No clue why.

Ok, so the last entry was pretty intense, but it's ok. I just needed to get all that out.

So what's been going through my mind since then? I tell you, my life is boring. Work and sleep, basically. I'm settling in on day shift at CFA, which was a little awkward at first, but it's good now. I am also getting into Emma, and I am very glad things are turning out this way. I don't know what I would have done if I didn't like something Jane Austen wrote. As an English major, I might have had to shoot myself. Also as an English major, I ought to be ashamed that I haven't read every word Austen ever wrote by now. (That's why I have my summer reading shelf.) Is that what I should use this blog for? Should I post my thoughts after my reading of books? I usually read on my break, so I guess I could think about it for the rest of work and then post when I get home. Perhaps.

Have I complained about the weather on here yet? I hope not for your sake, because you're about to hear it again. IT IS FREAKING HOT. 90s - 100s every day, into the evenings. Also, our air conditioning works, but not quite properly, because it is now...(I am checking the thermostat)...81 degrees inside the house. 81 degrees!! And I don't think it's going to be fixed anytime soon, because apparently lots of people are having issues with the heat, and the AC man is booked.

Another question: have I mentioned that it is my goal to teach myself French? Depending on school stuff, I will have to be able to at least read it and German, but I don't have the money or the time to take classes. So Rosetta Stone is my friend this summer. We just bought it on eBay, and I am impatient for it to arrive. I miss school, and my nerd-self needs an outlet besides reading.

I have more to say to you, Internet, but I will save it for another day. What would happen if I ran out of things to say? No, better to say too little than too much. Now I am going to bed before midnight, which is unheard of, especially since I get to sleep in tomorrow. Hurray for days off!

Sunday, June 1, 2008


Now, when I said until Friday, I was thinking it was Wednesday, and not Thursday, so really, I'm only a day late. Are you convinced? :)

I have to go read and see what I said about Emma. I don't think I've read much more. Hmm, I was very brief last time. I suppose that is because I was watching a movie at the time. I actually have an episode of The Office up right now, but it's not playing.

I've been having a pretty tough time recently, adjusting to life at home. I guess a lot of what college is about is doing stuff on your own, but I took that a little too far in trying to deal with some issues on my own that were impossible. All these issues (which shall remain description-less because the internet has a big mouth) have just been hanging over my head and making me miserable. And when I say I was trying to do things on my own, I mean I was trying to do them without God. I was convinced that I was smart enough to fix my life without him, and that was just really, really stupid. Now I am exhausted in emotionally and spiritually.

I don't like the expression that things all came to a head, because it sounds so dramatic, like there was some huge conversion experience or whatever, but that's what's coming to mind. I guess since being home and back with people who I know love me, I realized that I wanted to come back different, but I wanted to make sure it was differences for the better, and I knew that some differences in particular were not good.

So that's been hanging over my head for quite a while, and I knew God was (to use another over-dramatic expression) knocking on my door, hoping that I would let him fix things instead of it all eventually collapsing in on me. I guess I just sort of gave in today. We had communion and to be honest, it's not usually that big of a deal, but I knew I shouldn't be taking it with all this stuff still going on, and I just was thinking over and over again that I was tired. Tired of the cycle of (I might as well call it what it is) sin I was in, and tired of trying to hide it from everyone, including God.

I don't want this whole thing to narrow down to something like, "I learned today blah blah blah" from Sunday School, because that's just stupid. I guess I just realized, meaning God shoved it in my face, that I don't have to be perfect, that as a human, I am just going to have sin in my life. That doesn't mean that it's right or okay, but it also doesn't mean that I should expect to eradicate it completely. I mean, I spent a long time beating myself up over things that shouldn't have been in my life. I would try to fix it, and maybe it would work for a few days, or even weeks, but inevitably, I would let it back in, and inevitable, I called myself a hypocrite, a liar. I felt like a complete failure every single time. Another feeling that I never want to feel again (but I'm sure I will) was the loneliness. I didn't have my family or my church, but like I said before, I was doing this without God. I mean, he never left me, of course, but when I was so focused on what a failure I was, it was kind of hard to see that.

Whew! I know that probably none of that made sense at all. I normally hate it when people post stuff like this on the internet, because frankly, it's not the internet's business. It's just, a lot of my problems came from not being honest about what I'm struggling with, and if I admit out loud/on paper/computer that I'm not perfect, I feel like it will be easier to deal with. And I am all talked out, so I think I will watch that episode of The Office and then go to bed.

Oh, and don't worry that every entry is going to be so melodramatic and such from now on. I really do get very annoyed with people who do that. So anyways. Night!