Friday, September 10, 2010

I Want to be Available

"Everyone has a plan till they get punched in the mouth."
~Mike Tyson

And isn't that exactly what Life does? Punch your plans right in the mouth?

I was watching Stand Up for Cancer tonight and the statistics are just insane. 1 in every 2 men and 1 in every 3 women will be diagnosed with Cancer. Every 60 seconds a person dies from Cancer. Every minute, 3 people are diagnosed with Cancer. I mean when you think about these numbers and the millions of other things plaguing our world, its hard not to become depressed, apathetic, scared, defeated.

It would be easy to make no plans at all for fear that suffering or despair may interfere with your life. But it's what we do when we get punched in the mouth that defines us. Begins to shape our plans. To color our dreams.

As I sat watching with tears streaming down my face, I saw hope and love. These people took the punch in the mouth and stood for change. Stood for a new plan. A new dream.

So as I think about what steps I need to take next in life. I know as well that something will probably stand in the way and change the plans and the dreams and the hopes (I mean it already has a number of times), but I hope that I'll be defined by the way I handle that punch in the mouth. I don't want to be defined by doing nothing at all.

I want to be available for that punch in the mouth because that means I got in the ring for the fight.

"We can't plan life. All we can do is be available for it."
~Lauryn Hill

Friday, August 27, 2010

To Love or Be Loved?

The other night a friend and I were discussing love and in the midst of this discussion he posed this question to me. He asked, "Of these two things which one best describes you, the person who always gives love or the one who always needs love in a relationship?"

It took me a whole total of two seconds to answer and I consider myself a person who always gives love. But as I drove home from bowling, I started to ponder this question more and more. It actually kind of started to haunt me. I asked a few other friends where they found themselves in the spectrum of this question.

One guy said he was most definitely an always needs love and another friend said he thinks he’s both, depending on the type of relationship. My mother says she is also an always gives love kind of person.

So I wonder what the answer to this question says about us? Is one better than the other? Or should we be both? Do we even know how to give love, if we weren't loved in the first place? I must say this question is still haunting my thoughts.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

I'm waiting...

If you would have asked me six months ago where I would be now, I would have told you Australia.

I planned to go there for six months and help with a church plant. I still hope to do that one day soon, but it seems that isn't where I am supposed to be now.

For a while, I was frustrated with God. Questioning leaving New York. Questioning every decision I'd made in the last year. Truthfully, there are still days when I question.

I'm not a very good at waiting. At being still. I didn't know how to put any of these feelings into words. I just felt really alone. Kind of lost.

So one day during my lunch break, I went to the bookstore and picked up Pete Wilson's Plan B. "What to do when God doesn't show up the way you thought he would?" Yeah, that sounds about right.

I've truly enjoyed reading this book. I've even bought it for a couple of friends who are in the same place I'm in. Last night as I was reading and baking a Hummingbird cake for the Mom's in my life. I read this passage that just made everything I felt make a little more sense.

"The question isn't can you trust God? Of course you can trust God. The question is can you wait? Will you wait? Will you continue to hope in him even when his timing seems all off?"

So for now, I'm waiting.

Friday, March 5, 2010

I'm Not Hip To Be Square

I was gchatting with a dear friend today about different things that have happened since I saw her last in November. About our jobs, and life, and how excited we are for different things. In our conversation I made this comment about how different my friends are in Tennessee to my friends in NYC...

"they are square in a way that doesn't make me not love them, but square in a way that makes me stand out"

Her sweet response, "But that is what makes you special and you know that you need to be somewhere else"

And I do need to be somewhere else. Maybe not location wise, but I need to be somewhere else in my life. Not conforming. Not lacking. Not hiding. Being me.

If you are meant to be square, be square. If you are meant to be something else, be that.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Hard Stuff

I talked with one of my co-workers about the teachers we knew from high school. Cause get this my boss is younger than me & was one of my high school classmates. Oh the joys of living in a small town. We talked about the teachers who were still there. The ones who were our favorites. The ones who made our lives miserable. And we came to the conclusion that actually the ones who made life so hard for us when we were teens are actually the ones we learned the most from. They didn't break us. They didn't ruin our lives. They made us better. Made us stronger. Made us wiser.

I've become an avid sports fan since moving home. Its quite ridiculous. I literally sat and watched seven hours of NFL games one Sunday. BY MYSELF. Cheering and yelling. Angry at every dropped ball and interception. Ecstatic at plays completed. And you can pretty much bet, I'm not missing a guys UT basketball game if its on. Even though, my mom has banned me and my dad from watching them during dinner cause she says my yelling isn't polite at the table. The things that make me the angriest when watching games...missed free throws and fumbles. They are the basics of these sports. Hold onto the ball and when you get a chance to make a shot with no one guarding you, MAKE IT!! Some of these guys are 40% for making their free throws. RIDICULOUS! Its a basic you should have learned and mastered. You are playing college basketball. You have a scholarship. Why don't these players have higher percentages? This is my opinion, they didn't want to take the time to practice their free throws. We talk about how great people are and even let them get by with things because they are great at...fill in the blank. I think the Minnesota Vikings would have been in the Super Bowl if running back Adrian Peterson would have held onto the ball. (and if a few other things would have happened...hello protect Vikings, why didn't you protect your QB?)

Look at Peyton Manning. Yeah he didn't win the Super Bowl last night, but no one can deny the talent of the guy. Or the hard work he has put in to get where he is. I read something that said he is always in work mode. He watches reels of his past games and of his opponents. He is always learning. Always working through the hard things. Even after the Colts won against the New York Jets, he barely celebrated the win knowing the Super Bowl game was next and he couldn't lose focus.

All this to say, we live in a world that skips the hard stuff. We are overweight because we eat fast food instead of taking the time to cook healthy meals and work-out. We recruit players for scholarships who look good on paper but have no character and end up with drug and gun possession charges. We change teachers if they make us work more than we want to. We say no to the wilderness because it may be hard. We might be asked to do something or give up something or someone that we love. But in the end, its always for our best. It's in the hard moments that your true potential is shown.

All this to say. I'm in the wilderness. Some days I give up. Some days I hold on for all I got knowing God has His glory and my best interest in mind. So for those of you who are going through the wilderness or about to find yourself journeying into the wilderness, know you aren't alone.

This quote sums up really all my thoughts. Thanks Sam!
"In a sort of ghastly simplicity we remove the organ and demand the function. We make men without chests and expect of them virtue and enterprise. We laugh at honor and are shocked to find traitors in our midst. We castrate and bid the geldings be fruitful" - C. S. Lewis

Sunday, January 10, 2010

1 Train, please

"New York is a city of conversations overheard, of people at the next restaurant table (micrometers away) checking your watch, of people reading the stories in your newspaper on the subway train."
~William E. Guist

Drove to church this morning in my dad's Hummer by myself. As Andrew Greer and I sang duets, I wished there was someone to share that moment with me. I longed for the old company and familiar faces I would see every Sunday as we made our weekly commutes.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

New York Family

"There are the families we are born into, and there are the families that we choose, our circle of friends. While their faces may change over the course of our lives, the joy they bring us remains constant."