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Showing posts from May, 2011

Influence

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It has been a long while since I have posted anything here. I have been busy completing three years toward my B.A. in English and my senior year is underway. My current class (Creative Writing) has finally given me the space to take off the tight harness of academic writing rules, and it feels SO GOOD!! After reading my first assignment, Mom and Daddy gave it their thumbs up and suggested I make it a blog post, so here it is. It is my story and their story. It's a little longer than my usual posts, but as with everything I have ever posted here, I pray it encourages you to run "up the sunbeam to the sun" (C. S. Lewis).


"Follow my example, as I follow the example of Christ." 1 Corinthians 11:1 NIV


I sat above them on the stairs. Looking down through the window-like openings in the partition between the living room and the stairway, I listened to the basketball players, football players, baseball players, wrestlers, track athletes, both the lettermen and the also-…

The Topic We Know Too Well and Not Enough

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The woman in the pew in front of me had a distracting habit of rocking back and forth as though she were soothing a baby to sleep. I had to work to turn my attention from my annoyance at her rocking and focus my attention above and beyond her to the guest speaker. He had an engaging style, and had thoughtfully provided fill-in-the-blank notes for his sermon, which was a welcome way to pay attention to him and not the rocking woman I couldn'tNOT see.

His topic this morning was utterly familiar, much-studied, well-known . . . and woefully under-practiced, both inside and outside of the church. He spoke about LOVE.

The visiting seminary professor brought a message that was both convicting AND uplifting (evidence of his giftedness), and he highlighted many points of truth about love and our responsibility that are absolutely crucial to our lives in Christ. While I will continue to chew on the meaty goodness of this message, there was one idea he shared that really sparked my imagin…

The Perfect Mix

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Perfect?

Nope . . . no perfection in sight, despite my many years of pursuing it.

Now what? Should I keep going? Give up? Should I stop pushing buttons and fine-tuning the dials and reconfiguring my settings to get closer to the "perfect mix" that eludes me? I hear that being a perfectionist can be unhealthy. On the other hand, I hear that many of the world's most effective and successful people are, at least to some degree, perfectionists.

What to do? What to DO?

Is there anything wrong with the pursuit of perfection? It couldn't be right to be in pursuit of IMperfection, now could it?  After all, it was in His sermon on the mount that Jesus went so far as to say, "Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect." Matthew 5:48 NIV

Whoa!! So not just perfect, but PERFECT . . . like God-caliber PERFECTION!!  And here I thought I was discouraged by trying to be small-p perfect. How in the world?!!

What did Jesus mean by that? That was easy for Him…

Undeniable Contrast

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The energy in the room changed dramatically. The entire audience seemed to feel it and sit up a little straighter in their seats with anticipation. Intermission was over and the band my son assembled to perform some of his original songs in a concert at his college was about to play--the debut performance of

Jordan Friday and the Beautiful Romance!
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Being on a college campus, the concert up to this point had been an eclectic mix of musical styles, varied cultures and lyrical content. There had been . . .

. . . profanity-laced rap and hip hop . . .
. . . some nice acoustic guitar work punctuated with angst and anger, lyrics about men reverting back to apes and violent rituals and despair . . .
. . . and finally, my first introduction to a live performance by a screamo death metal band--lots of rage, frenzy, desperation, writhing on the floor and sounds I didn't know human voices could make "singing" words I think I'm glad were unintelligible.

Rear-Ended in the Twilight Zone

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BUMP.

She So Sweet and I looked at each other in surprise.

BUMP again!

The car behind us in the drive-thru had bumped into us, not once, but twice! After a restaurant employee took this picture of the contact between the two cars, I pulled up a few feet so I could get out and take a look. Nothing in all my life prepared me for finding myself suddenly on the dark side of the Twilight Zone.

While I inspected my car, the other driver had gotten out of her car.  She was 50-ish with hair dyed an unnatural shade, wearing ordinary casual clothes, but what really struck me was her hollow, world-weary expression and the hardness in her eyes. I guess I thought she might apologize, or explain what happened, or feel embarassed--any number of responses could have been appropriate. Instead she indignantly and agressively questioned me about why I would even look for damage when she "was only going 0-5 mph!"

What?!!!
I quietly explained that I just needed to make sure before we left the sce…

What To Do With Dreams, Delays, and Dashed Hopes

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I had this teeny tiny dream.

I wanted to create a line of rodeo-themed greeting cards.

That SOUNDED so simple, but I had no idea that I would have more than two years of delays and dashed hopes in my pursuit of getting that teeny tiny dream to become cards-in-my-hand and on the market.

The first pictures I took were at a rodeo run by a big rodeo association.  I wanted to do things right and get the appropriate permissions necessary. When I spoke with the PR director, she was very interested and asked me to send her some samples.  She LOVED my work! She loved the pictures so much she wanted to not only get me permission to make my line of greeting cards, she wanted to use them in the souvenir programs that would go out to all their rodeos in North America the following rodeo season, AND give me a byline, AND list my website!


Victory lap, right?!!

Wrong.

Since I was not a licensed photographer with her association, the powers that governed such things would not give approval for any …