Tuesday, November 30, 2004

you are forests!


Where is your dream place?
brought to you by Quizilla

the world is a bit safer today

my hero

steve at ragamuffin rambler highlighted a washington post article on the courage of republican congressman dave hobson to lead the fight to stop new nuclear testing and development as part of an omnibus bill. this is a rare instance where the republican congress has gone against the president, and i would like to honor them for that. you can write congressman hobson here.

you can also write your member of congress here.

people in glass families...

You are Zooey. You are intelligent, determined,
and have a quick sense of humor. You have
compassion for the lost, broken, and forgotten.
Unfortunately, you also judge too quickly and
have a tendency to alienate people. Not that
you care.

Which member of J.D. Salinger's dysfunctional Glass family are you?
brought to you by Quizilla

via steph.

Monday, November 29, 2004

wonder zine!

i just finished jen's and pache's new christmas zine and it is wonderful. i have never had a better preparation for the upcoming season. i've been kind of blah to it this year and their stories, articles and ideas have warmed me up beautifully!

i highly recommend it to all of you!

you can support their great work here.

space invaders

i thought i'd have the house to myself today. i somehow forgot the kids were still off school today. i'm such a bad mommy... i'm feeling horrible this morning, this last week just sucked the life out of me.

my sister and her husband came to stay for the past 4 days and it threw everything off kilter, especially my patience. i have tried and tried to like my new brother-in-law, i really have. by saturday night i was stretched to the edges of civility. i maintained, but barely. i can't imagine how my sister endures. he has a good heart, and isn't a mean person, but he's so thoughtless and at times ignorant and rarely stops talking. it was difficult to want to hear how my sister was doing, but have the air constantly filled with his opinions and words. i think she likes hiding behind him now, i really don't know. she wouldn't open up at all.

i'm just plain wiped out. i was really hoping to have the house all to myself today. i just want to curl up with a good book and not have anyone require anything of me today... pink and buck are such easy kids, i shouldn't begrudge them another day off school, it's just been constant since i returned from seattle. sick kids, company and life in general have flattened out any energy i might have had...

i think maybe i need a nap. maybe it will help with this headache... hope all of you are fairing well today. peace.

Saturday, November 27, 2004

i before e?

i have been taking personality profiles and tests since i began therapy 20 years ago. i've done them all, but recently i have realized that part of my brokenness was being very disillusioned with what it meant to be female and what it meant to own my femininity.

because i had no female role models that i could honor (either there were women held up as the 'model proverbs 31 woman' that i was supposed to emulate and couldn't, or women who were strong, independent types that i was drawn to, but they were targets for my culture's venom as women's lib-ers or too 'unbiblical' to allow myself to really look up to them) i created in my broken psyche what i thought a christian woman was supposed to look like, and i was supposed to emulate, and then went from the extremes of trying/failing/give up/trying/failing/give up... it was a very confusing process.

this is why i can sympathize so closely with my mother even though there was much in our relationship to cause pain and a lot of therapy. she was as confused as i was, and didn't fit into that mold that the church tried to stuff us into for so long either.

so back to the personality profiles... i think i have answered the questions on those tests with that image i thought i was supposed to be, instead of how i really was. i have been very confused deconstructing this image, replacing the lies with the truth and deciding what to keep and what to throw away. so much of this has wound it's way into the very core of my being.

somehow in that constructed image i thought that extrovert meant strong and confident and an introvert was weak and shameful. i decided i was not going to be weak (it's filled with paradox because i was always rebelling against the tight constraints given to me by the church i was raised in) and have constructed myself to be an extrovert. it's like i saw it as a goal, set my mind toward it and forced myself to BE and 'e'. i am only now realizing how damaging that has been to my person, how little value i placed on who i really was, and how much i shamed myself throughout my life for failing to be that constructed image of who i thought i was supposed to be.

i'm finding that i can hardly trust myself to respond to questions on personality tests because i've convinced myself that i am something i'm not, and i've done it for so long, and so well that i have succeeded in desperately confusing myself.

it's only been through reading the blogs of others (especially blair) as she embraces the introvert parts of herself that i have come to realize how damaging this mistaken belief has been to me. i now can see that each time i would push myself to be that extrovert the recovery process that would follow would be so intense. i would shame myself through the time it would take for me to forget how damaging that last episode was, so that i would push myself to do it again (and again, and again).

i'm having a terrible time trying to put these pieces together as there is so much shame i have to pick through to find the pieces of me in the shrapnel. i can hardly find the words as i have had so much 'people time' with company here that i can't think or express what i need to express, but i'm muscling through writing it just to get some of this out of my head and onto paper (er, well screen).

i love solitude. i love deep interactions. i love to be alone with my thoughts. i love to write. i love to dig deep. i love real, intentional relationships with others. i love my home to be my nest, safe and away from those things that drain me.

i hate forced relating. i hate small talk. i hate the church foyer, filled with all of that. i loathe being forced to be sociable and fake. i don't like people in my home who make any of the above happen. and most of all i hate that part of me that shamed who i really am for so long for thinking that anything else had to be true.

i embrace my introvert self. i was made this way. even though i am capable in front of people it doesn't mean i'm an extrovert. this is what i look like. this is who i am. i will not force myself, or allow others to force me into being something i am not. i embrace me. i am an 'i'!

Thursday, November 25, 2004

happy thanksgiving ya'll!

the daily dig resonates so deeply with how i've (and many of you) have been feeling lately.
Life is a Banquet
Dorothy Day

We cannot love God unless we love each other. We know him in the breaking of bread, and we know each other in the breaking of bread, and we are not alone anymore. Heaven is a banquet, and life is a banquet too - even with a crust - where there is companionship. We have all known loneliness, and we have learned that the only solution is love, and that love comes with community. (Dorothy Day: The Long Loneliness)
i pray we all can find the crust of community, true community within our lives during this season. this is something for which i am truly grateful this thanksgiving season. the way our lives have intertwined and our hearts have been seen. i thank god for each of you today.

i am also thankful for the daily dig - want to receive it every day yourself?? here.

Wednesday, November 24, 2004

what part of thanksgiving dinner are you?

You Are the Stuffing

You're complicated and complex,
yet all your pieces fit together.
People miss you if you're gone - but they're not sure why.

thanks mumcat! we're stuffing twins! :)

emerging - visual thesaurus style

stephanie just drew my attention to this.

you can get a few free searches and i, of course, typed in 'emerging'

i wish i could get the graphic to paste here, it's like a chemical structure with branches off in different directions, and circle hubs that place definitions that surround the word.

the adjective definitions given were:
-coming into maturity
-yet to be or coming
-in the process of being born or beginning
-coming into view
-coming into existence

i know most of you think of the emergent church when you hear the word emerging, and maybe that's how i meant it when i titled my blog, but it's become so much more than that for me. it is a metamorphosis of me. i am emerging. i am finding out who i am. i know that may sound self-centered or inward, maybe even immature, but i'm okay with that. i have never truly been a peace with me or even known who i am.

i am learning to own my own name, i haven't gotten there yet, maybe that's one of the reasons anonymous works so well for me? maybe it's about being okay with who i am and learn to stop shaming myself for not being all of the things i've tried so hard to be all my life, never doing any of them well.

i really do feel like i am coming into existence somehow. like i am being born again, in a more complete way. things are being redeemed, realities are being owned. it is painful, but important.

other words that surrounded emerging were:
i like those words.

they are hopeful words.

yahweh by U2 is about being born, redeemed, living in the present, waiting...

Yahweh, Yahweh
Always pain before a child is born
Yahweh, Yahweh
Still I'm waiting for the dawn

What no man can own, no man can take
Take this heart
Take this heart
Take this heart
And make it break

that song resonates so deeply with where i'm at right now, the cry of his (my) heart put to music. hope, emerging hope.

thankful hearts

my words are scarce today, so i hope these express my heart more fully...
  • Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow. (Melody Beattie)
  • A thankful heart is not only the greatest virtue, but the parent of all the other virtues. (Cicero)
  • Gratitude is the memory of the heart. (J.B. Massieu)
  • Gratitude takes three forms: A feeling in the heart, an expression in words, and a giving in return. (Anonymous)
  • Let us be thankful for the fools. But for them the rest of us could not succeed. (Mark Twain)
  • Nothing is worth more than this day. (Goethe)
happy thanksgiving all!

image via.

Tuesday, November 23, 2004

true confessions

i LOVE books. i spend any free money i have on them, surround myself with them and hunt for them in 2nd hand stores and garage sales. i love the way they smell, feel and open my world to everything possible.

i have a horrible habit. i love to start a new book. it's like meeting a new friend. i'm almost (well probably really) compulsive about it. to receive a new book and not open it's lovely well seems almost sacrilegious to me. i love books.

i have updated my sidebar, i hadn't changed it since i first installed it, so it was definitely time. but if i was honest there would be WAY more than 4 books that i am in process with right now. it's a horrible habit. i leave them scattered about my house, guiltily stealing a minute with a couple pages where ever i go. i tuck them into my purse in case there is a moment to spare waiting. i love waiting, it's a guilty pleasure, because i always have a book.

i am horrible at finishing books. it's like saying goodbye to a friend. i plow through fiction, that's never a problem, but non-fiction really feels like a deep conversation with a calibre of people that i rarely have in my life, so i cherish each moment (page) with them.

i guess i shouldn't feel so guilty, i do eventually get around to finishing them, but it can take up to a year because i have so many on the go. but that time spent with my author friends is sacred to me. it fills me up with knowledge, information and encouragement just at the right time i need it. it never fails.

when i pick up a book that i have set aside, or misplaced under a stack of other books and papers, it re-engages me at exactly the right place. i probably wouldn't have been ready for that gem if i had plowed through it non-stop. sometimes it's only a paragraph, but it's exactly the RIGHT paragraph, at exactly the RIGHT time.

so, i confess, i'm a messy reader. i regret the sad parting of a finished book like the wave to a friend i don't know if i'll ever see again. i know i can go back and re-read, but it's just not the same. i love books.

Monday, November 22, 2004

$250 iTunes credit or a free ipod - help please!

all i want for christmas is a free ipod, a free ipod, a free ipod... all i want for christmas is a free ipod... so i can... i'll stop honest.

okay, yes, me begging again... the people who signed up under me for the free ipod thing scrambled on me, so i'm yet again begging.

did you know that if you already have an ipod you can get a $250 iTunes gift certificate?!?!?! you know you want that U2 catalog - it's $149.00 - with the iTunes coupon you could get that and still have $101 to play with for other songs - come on, you know you want it!

here are the 3 steps you need to take to make this work.

1. go to yahoo or hotmail, make up a disposable email address. the gimmick here is that they sell your active email address to other companies (nothing r-rated or anything, so far it's like sprint and car companies, etc. - and it is spam, but who cares, after you're done with your commitment you can let that account just fill to the brim and never check it again, right!?!?!)

2. go free ipod here and sign up using that disposable email address. choose either an ipod of a $250 iTunes credit.

3. sign up for free 2 week blockbuster trial (the least expensive and the give you a free month when you go to cancel) - plus you get to watch dvd's sent to your home which you retun in the mail.

4. post your link on your blog, or email friends to solicit your five people to sign up under you.

i normally would be doing that instead of hassling all of you, but i used my emergingsideways email address and because it's anonymous i can't beg anyone i don't want to know about my blog... argh!

this isn't a scam, it's real, lots of bloggers have shown pictures of their new ipods (or gift certificate for itunes if you'd prefer) on their blogs.

bobbie wants an ipod for christmas! :) PLEASE!!

this is a real product!

truth in advertising!


Sunday, November 21, 2004


wes roberts' word in process is imagination. i have blogged on his other words, revolution and beauty, and each time have spent quite a lot of time contemplating the words. i thought i got hung up on beauty because of self image, but i think all of the words are forcing me to face issues in my life where there lack.

lack of imagination is as difficult for me as lack of beauty. so i have been avoiding writing (and even reading his posts on imagination until today). i long for this word to be associated with me, i want to be a person of great imagination. yet i find it is not necessarily always welcome. verbalizing imaginative solutions means a couple of things... 1. there is a problem, 2. the way it's being done isn't the most imaginative way and 3. the imagineer thinks they know more than those around them.

i remember the first time we met a real live imagineer. his name is c. mcnair wilson. many of you know him. i know he's a good friend of wes and judy's. mcnair is truly the most imaginative person that i know, he drips with it and he doesn't let anyone tell him it's not okay. it's written on the very core of his being, his soul, and just by being around him you can feel the rings around the planets in your brain start spinning in ways you've never dreamed of. mcnair gave liam and i permission to embrace our imaginations. he challenged us and inspired us. i love him for it, and i miss him. i could use a good shot of mcnair right about now.

we brought him into our little burg and found that there were few like us who wanted permission to be imaginative like us. that was okay. we got to spend some real quality time with mcnair, and even took him for a day to the local outdoor flea market looking for items to add to his collection. he purchased himself a trombone.

for liam and i ideas are like kleenex. oh, here's one, oh, don't like that, oh, another one just popped up, try that one, or here's a couple more... we never realized how incredibly threatening that can be for people without vision. (read most senior pastors (sorry) and board members...)

our enthusiasm and passion flow in a way that is like trying to drink from a fire hose sometimes... so most of the time we turn off the faucet. it's easier that way. less messy, and we make far smaller targets this way.

being at the path ignited that place in me that burns with a holy fire (i hope it's holy) to use our imaginations for god. i'm tired of being in 'off mode', trying to hide and not be who i am, and not see liam be who he could be. watching him try to fit into the business mode of doing church, overwhelmed with administrative busy work and reports to write is just stealing all the joy from his soul, and he's gotten so used to it that he doesn't even realize it anymore...

imagine... i can't remember if i told you that part of the path is envisioning yourself 3 years from now and writing the whole day down - morning to bedtime - what does that look like? this was dangerous ground for me to walk on. this meant i really had a life, not that i was a moon orbiting around everyone else's. and i liked it, i liked it a lot. liam did too, but the fear and the tapes in his head play so loud that the holy fire keeps dying out. imagine...

i wrote so much more but somehow it must have been closed down (pink and buck were playing on the computer and i must not have hit 'save draft', so i've lost the whole ending... - well imagine that it was wonderful! i'll try to remember what i wrote and edit it later...

i thought about this a lot this morning and guess that maybe the stuff that i wrote that got deleted was just for me, so maybe i'll keep it that way.

my new retirement/college fund plan

i first saw this about a week ago over at the main point. michael drew attention to it when it was only at $3.50. i had a little giggle and moved on. i just read about it again this morning and it's up over $15,000!

it seems this 10 year grilled cheese sandwich has not molded or turned green and holds the face of the virgin mary. it's also a good luck charm as the owner has won $70,000 in casino gambling winnings. i love that it's resting peacefully on a bed of cotton balls! that just makes me giggle.

so i'm getting me a case of wonder bread, some kraft singles and frying me up a mess of sandwiches, maybe one will look like mount rushmore?

jeep - you made my day and it's only 5:26!

mike over at a jeep in summer has posted the following:

March Will Come

Plan B: Further Thoughts On Faith
by Anne Lamott

List Price:


You Save:
$7.66 (32%)

Availability: This item has not yet been released. You may order it now and we will ship it to you when it arrives from Amazon.com.

i can't think of anything i'd rather read! woo hoo! i was hoping her next work wasn't going to be fiction, i love her, but her best work (imho) is her everyday struggle and outlook on life.

you can find it on amazon here. (no image or i would have added it in my excitement!)

ps - mike, your comments don't work for me or i would have told you of my joy on your blog, and that there is a protestant monastery in the works - if you go to tallskinnykiwi you will see that andrew and his wife are in the process of locating a site for one in the orkney islands in northern scotland! (was going to leave that comment yesterday!)

Saturday, November 20, 2004

i have a new addiction

Miracle Drug

I want to trip inside your head
Spend the day there...
To hear the things you haven't said
And see what you might see

I want to hear you when you call
Do you feel anything at all?
I want to see your thoughts take shape
And walk right out

Freedom has a scent
Like the top of a new born baby's head

The songs are in your eyes
I see them when you smile
I've had enough I'm not giving up
On a miracle drug

Of science and the human heart
There is no limit
There is no failure here sweetheart
Just when you quit...

I am you and you are mine
Love makes nonsense of space
And time...will disappear
Love and logic keep us clear
Reason is on our side, love...

The songs are in your eyes
I see them when you smile
I've had enough of romantic love
I'd give it up, yeah, I'd give it up
For a miracle, a miracle drug, a miracle drug

God I need your help tonight

Beneath the noise
Below the din
I hear a voice
It's whispering
In science and in medicine
"I was a stranger
You took me in"

The songs are in your eyes
I see them when you smile
I've had enough of romantic love
I'd give it up, yeah, I'd give it up
For a miracle, miracle drug

Miracle, miracle drug

all i need to know about church i learned on a greyhound bus

church - get this, please!!

"Teamwork, a common mission, a flexible leader who's willing to listen, a sense of humor... all from a Greyhound lost in Queens. Yet it's remarkable how many business (church) environments are lacking these simple (organic) elements."

cnn's not taking itself so seriously

these new ad campaigns are very funny. especially the anderson cooper out-takes. he was the mayor of munchkinland!

via fast company

the things that will destroy us

i just wanted to remember this quote.

"The things that will destroy us are: politics without principle; pleasure without conscience; wealth without work; knowledge without character; business without morality; science without humanity; and worship without sacrifice."


found here.

Friday, November 19, 2004

images from the path

i have finally gotten my pictures from vancouver so i thought i'd share them with you all. just looking at them again brings back so many wonderful memories. i miss you all!

the GREAT room at linwood house

gwen mc vicker (needs to blog) & lisa - get yer goat

stephanie - just etchings & idelette - idelette.com

anj - living at both ends

neritia - coming down the mountain

deb abiding and lynne (mike todd is her brother - waving or drowning)

lisa - get yer goat

back to basics

i just can't seem to get back in the swing of things. travelling always does that to me, and i guess mix that with having a sick kid for a week and i'm pretty off my stride.

this morning i journalled instead of blogged. i started toward the computer and thought 'no, change something, what you've been doing isn't working for you'. so i grabbed a pen, a lit a candle and sat and journalled. then i sat in distracted silence for longer than i thought i could manage and hoped it would ready me to face the day.

i went to our book study this morning as was pleasantly suprised as our discussion turned to living in the broken-ness. i usually feel like the 'odd man out' there, but today i think there were a couple kindred spirits in the room, and even some 'ah-ha' experiences taking place. i'm a little jaded to be too hopeful, but there is a spark there that i pray will blow into a full fledged campfire of community.

i realize i have lost a lot since this summer, most of it has slid away slowly, so slowly that i haven't noticed. serenity, disciplines and areas of focus that served me better than what i've been doing lately. i realize that the recovery program at our church is bringing me little support or recovery. it's sad, but i've come to realize that it's too much like a bible study instead of a support group. platitudes and homilies aren't enough for me to maintain the level of growth i'm desiring.

i know that i must have a difficult, diplomatic conversation with 'the powers that be' and i am even more jaded to think that there will be any benefit to this other than me no longer having to participate. the last conversation where i attempted to explain how i felt and my desires to participate left me feeling very patronized, as she informed me, with saccarine sweetness where the power lay. i got the message and tried to play along, and have for the past 18 months. i no longer have the heart for it, i really don't. i will give it one more week and if after thanksgiving i feel it is still not giving more than it's taking i will withdraw with another conversation. accepting the things i cannot change...

this is also with the knowledge that i will be moving on to other, truer things, not running away like i have in my past. this is an important part of my growth, learning how to close things down, finish things and leave in a healthy way. walking toward, not running from.

i also know that my eating has become messy. i haven't broken my abstinence, but i have gotten lazy, and the scale is creeping upward. i had a magical plateau for the summer that i was able to maintain and be sloppy with my food. i can't do that now. i've got to make some progress in this area or i will lose (gain) all the footings i have gained (lost) so far.

god, grant me the serenity to accept the things i cannot change, the courage to change the things i can and the wisdom to know the difference. living one day at a time, enjoying one moment at a time, accepting hardship as the pathway to peace, taking as jesus did, this sinful world as it is, not as i would have it. trusting that you will make all things right, if i surrender to your will, so that i may be reasonably happy in this life, and supremely happy with you forever in the next. amen.

Thursday, November 18, 2004

how do they do it?

okay all ya'll home school moms - i have SO much more respect for you since trying to keep pink updated on all of her missed school work. she's on an antibiotic and hopefully it will clear up her sinus infection SOON...

i always did have a healthy load of respect for anyone who would choose not to send their children away on the bus every day and keep them home instead, but the level of frustration i felt today as pink struggled with breaking the numerical code on this silly homework assignment matched waiting in the express line at the grocery store behind 4 people with overflowing carts.

breathe... i wanted to tear up the paper, say 'this is so stupid, don't bother, you're not learning anything here anyway except how to frustrate yourself and your mother...' how do you all not do the work for the? or just give them the answers?? you must have the patience of job, i can't stand it.

poor kid. i took a breathing break and came back and said 'this isn't about you pink, this is about me, i'm sorry, my frustration is about things other than you or your ability to accomplish this homework assignment.' aaargh! she's going to school tomorrow whether or not she's feeling better! i just can't do it anymore! please god keep my son healthy and strong, i really need a break!

lost lives here

christy at dry bones dance is peeling back the flannel graph on some great parables today.

best line: And only the greatly privileged have the luxury of thinking lost lives somewhere else.

go and enjoy here.

Wednesday, November 17, 2004


"this is the job, these are the decisions, when to push them, when to back them, worrying about your children is sanity and being that sane can drive you nuts."
jars of clay on the soundtrack, adult child of an alcoholic, real father, great director, oooh i can't wait!

watch preview here.

coming to theatres near you december 17th!

ask for what you need

one of the reoccuring phrases that resounded in my ears during the path was 'ask for what you need'. how novel. i come by 'sideways' naturally. it's in my dna. i was raised in an environment of independence and rarely did i hear anyone 'ask for what they need', and so i likewise find this very difficult.

it's definately a two step process, 1. what the heck do i need?? this is usually the thing that trips me up as i move through my day never really acknowledging that fact or admiting i have any needs at all.

2. trusting someone else enough to verbalize the vulnerability that i actually do have a need and requesting that they help me (gasp) to fill or meet that need.

this is foreign to me, so very foreign.

i loved it when my children were finally able to do this, verbalize a need. i sweated with frustration at times when all they could do is look at me with teary eyes and cries. my heart thought 'tell me what you need!'. i wonder if god feels that way with me sometimes... seeing tears in my eyes as i can't even put into words my deepest wants, desires, dreams and needs. ask for what you need.

i know there is a huge spiritual principle at play here too. giving voice to our needs is crucial to their being met. i believe this is one of the reasons prayer is so important - to build community. if i have no verbalized needs i have no community. you have not because you ask not.

jesus constantly forced people to verbalize what they wanted from him. he was never 'magical', never met needs without being asked. i so want to be the kind of woman who can deeply identify my needs and trust both god and my community to meet them. right now i have difficulty even requesting a babysitter, who i'd pay to come and care for my children. it seems indulgent, like i'm opening myself up to judgement somehow. so i isolate and protect, fear and critique, oh and don't forget complain, because i have all of these unmet needs for community that i resent others (my church) for not fulfilling... crap.

poor liam is the only person (and maybe my kids in a small dose) that i trust enough to really verbalize my needs to. because he's such a 'fixer' he ends up feeling the overwhelming responsiblity of meeting those (all those) needs himself. we're working on this. i know that this is not what god intends.

oh father, i ask for the ability today to identify my needs specifically, to verbalize them and to trust, both you and others enough to verbalize them. i am afraid, i have a need for courage, please give me courage to enter into face to face community today. amen.

Tuesday, November 16, 2004

take action - close the school of americas!

The U.S. Army School of the Americas (SOA) is a combat training school for Latin American soldiers located at Fort Benning, Georgia. SOA graduates have been responsible for some of the worst human rights atrocities in Latin American history, including:

* Two of the three officers responsible for the assassination of Salvadoran Archbishop Oscar Romero in 1980
* Three of the five officers responsible for the rape and murder of four U.S. churchwomen in 1980
* 19 of 26 responsible for the massacre of six Jesuit priests, their housekeeper, and her daughter in 1989
* The man convicted in Guatemalan courts for the assassination of Guatemalan Bishop Juan Jose Gerardi in 1998
* The man arrested for the murder of Colombian Bishop Isaias Duarte in 2002

Originally set up as a counterinsurgency training school in 1946, the SOA has claimed numerous reforms in the way it selects and trains its students over the years, culminating in its name change to the "Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation" (WHISC) in 2001. Each of these changes came only because of grassroots and congressional activism, but none has permanently closed the school or allowed for a full accounting of its tragic legacy. The school continues to train soldiers from countries with the worst human rights records in the region.

There are three ways to take action today to close the School of the Americas:

1. Arrange to travel to Fort Benning, Georgia, this coming weekend for the annual vigil to close the SOA. Join Martin Sheen, Susan Sarandon, Amy Ray of the Indigo Girls, Sr. Helen Prejean of Dead Man Walking fame, Bishop Gabino Zavala, and thousands more people of conscience to stand in solidarity with those affected by the atrocities committed by SOA graduates. This annual vigil serves as a powerful reminder of the work that can be accomplished by those who care enough to take a stand and take action. Go to www.soaw.org for travel details, and if you can't attend yourself, consider giving financial help to a local college or church group making the trip.

2. Begin planning to take part in the SOA Lobby Days, February 21-22, as faith-based activists from around the country make a personal appeal to congressional representatives to close the school.

3. A bill sits in Congress that would close, investigate, and prevent another cosmetic remake of the SOA. Please contact your congressperson today and urge them to co-sponsor HR 1258.

Click here to send a letter.

via sojo

two roads diverged...

will at willzhead has blogged about the southern baptist and lifeway boycott of leonard sweet's new book out of the question, into the mystery and his server was down, so i couldn't post my comment there, so i decided to blog on it too.

it stuns me to think that there are 'christian book stores' who are making these kind of business decisions. it shows how limited their scope truly is. to be cutting your market in 1/2 by determining which books can and cannot purchased in these times of amazon and wal-mart is absolutely stunning to me. spookyrach over at skewed view has a hysterical story to tell of her last visit to the jesus five and dime.

personally i welcome their boycott - it does wonders for disney's business - maybe it will do the same for sweet's book sales. i know i would have bought it 2nd hand originally, but i'll be purchasing it new, and pushing it up on my reading list because of this.

'build the walls higher' only works for so long - soon that kind of mindset will have very little power over controlling the belief systems of those in the pews, and they are terrified, downright terrified.

i have felt for over a year now that there is a big divide coming. i am not a prophet, but i can feel it in my bones. there will be a time soon where the powers that be in the evangelical church 'reclassifies' itself as 'for' or 'against'. the black and white, easy answers crowd who like everything in a neat little box, and the rest of us.

i see this especially happening in youth ministry. the josh mcdowells of the world cannot tolerate questions. the 'bible answer man' types will bunker down and drawn their lines. i think it's only a matter of time before another restructuring happens. loss of power and control will force their hands.

and i don't think it's going to be pretty, in fact i think it's going to get really ugly. i can see the discomfort in our sr. pastor's eyes when my husband speaks of rob bell or a generous orthodoxy. they are the gatekeepers, and it will be an easy call in their eyes to determine which side of the line is truth and which side is error.

the beauty of the internet is that it wrests this power from their hands. those in the pews, if curious, now have acess to the kingdom in ways that truly never happened before. that 'us' vs. 'them' or the 'we're the only ones with the truth' mentality is shown for what it is to those truly seeking truth. just a fearful grasp for power and control.

i pray i'm wrong, but i fear i'm not. liam and i have had this discussion many times, it is the soul of who we are. introducing the next generation to a life-giving truth that has wings instead of a dead lifeless one in a box. i wrote on this for youthworker journal last summer. questions truly are important, they were important to jesus. he's not afraid of our questions, he welcomes them, living in the questions is the point. having all the answers isn't faith at all.

hallucinations and lack of sleep

well, pink has been sick these past few days with a fever and every time i get ready to take her to the doctor she perks right up and it looks like the worst is over. well, this morning i awoke to her tearing things off her wall because they looked like people coming to take her away. poor wee thing.

there were also spiders. that was always my hallucination as a kid. spiders on the ceiling. today i guess we need to get to the doctor.

so, 4:00 wake up and another day 'at home' with this kiddo. i informed her yesterday that sick at home on a school day didn't look like sick at home on the weekend - no tv and a lot of time in her room. she complied, but was disappointed. it's so hard to balance. i think we'll do a lot of reading today to pass the time.

is it horrible for me to have really wanted her to be healthy and back to school?? especially for her, but also for me... i really wanted today to just have some silence and solitude. to contemplate the workings of this past month or more... oh well, it's not to be today i guess.

just in case

hey, it seems like a couple of my people have 'flaked' on the free ipod thing, i only need a couple more and all you have to do is sign up an email (make one up on hotmail for free - they will send you emails, not spam yet, i'm sure it will get to that point, but these seem to be from reasonable businesses) and get blockbuster dvd's for 2 weeks and talk 5 more people into doing the same (what a pyramid scheme!!!! bhwaaaaaaaaa) and you get a free ipod. it's real. adam cleaveland at pomomusings got his (well, he didn't get it because it came to his parents and they shipped it to him and it got lost in the mail... so he is grieving his lack of ipodness still).

anyway - if you want one of your own please click here.

Sunday, November 14, 2004

the goal is soul

great ny times article on u2 here.

thanks to peregrinatio for the head's up!

the hand of a mother

the first exercise we did on 'the path' was to stand in a circle, close our eyes and move about the room. i thought to myself 'yuck, i hate these kind of games, this is why i work with youth, so i can make other people play them, not me...'

during the discomfort of our temporary blindness and sharing a room with other strangers also feeling so uncomfortable we were told to extend our right hand and clasp the hand of another. we then spent time 'getting to know that other hand'.

it's a strange experience to say the least. it felt like 5 minutes, but was probably less, but in that time of exploration i realized that the hand i was holding felt so similar to my mother's hand. it became very comforting, almost 'otherworldly' somehow.

we were then instructed to say 'goodbye' to that hand. i raised it to my lips and softly kissed the back of it. i know it was strange, but i truly felt as if i was holding the hand of my mother (who died almost 17 years ago). we then were to mingle about again, and then had to refind our partner's hand. i knew that hand, i knew i would have no problem finding that hand again. other hands would grasp mine and i shook them off because i knew they were not 'mine'.

once we refound our 'hand' we were then able to open our eyes to reveal who the owner was. mine was a woman named constance, she was kind, quiet and i looked forward to getting to know her more.

meal times at linwood house took place in the dining room and the parlor. two tables were always set with lovely china awaiting our glorious meals (prepared lovingly by stephanie). dining in the parlor was always a spiritual experience for me. i posted while there about 'thin spaces' - that parlor was the place i was referring to.

sitting at that table with 8 women who barely knew each other we began to tell our stories. i don't know how it came to be, but we found that most of us had either struggled with infertility, adoption, birth or other deep issues that surrounded motherhood. it was then that connie spoke of her infertility. i don't know why, but the spirit told me i needed to share with her that she had the hand of a mother.

after the meal i spoke with connie and told her of the experience i had during our hand holding exercise. it was a sacred moment and one i will treasure forever.

at the end of the path we were to choose partners to take us from the retreat into the working out of our visions. both connie and i did not want to be selfish in our choosing, but i knew that i truly wanted her 'motherly' influence in my life, i needed that, it would redeem a place within my soul that felt great loss. she is a woman of creative force and beauty, a deep well, and i long to get to know her more deeply as time passes.

you can too, she has begun a blog and you can find her here.

band aid II

i was a very different person 20 years ago for band aid I, judgemental and self-righteous, not touched by the hunger, loss and pain in this world. today that there must be a II breaks my heart.

on november 29th - feed the world, support band aid II

what's wrong with gossip?

There is no law but love. Love is joy in others. Therefore it should be out of the question to speak about another person in a spirit of irritation or vexation. There must never be talk, either in open remarks or by insinuation, against anyone, or against their individual characteristics—and under no circumstances behind their back. Gossiping in one’s family is no exception. Direct address is the brotherly or sisterly service we owe anyone whose weaknesses cause a negative reaction in us. An open word spoken directly to another person deepens friendship and will not be resented.

Eberhard Arnold
wow, is it any wonder why our churches are so screwed up. we don't practice this. i don't practice this. i want to, but who has the time? i don't mean that as a cop-out, but the list of 'irritation or vexation' is pretty long (especially today) - i can see this really happening in communal living (which is looking really attractive right now), but in our suburban culture i could never see this kind of thing happening. what a challenge though.

i'd like to try. it would take me a month just to clear up the gunk from the yesterdays so that i could start fresh, what a concept... what a challenge...

Saturday, November 13, 2004

femme fatal (not fatale)

this past year a lot of my emerging surrounds who i am as a woman. most of you know i come from a heritage where being a woman in the church really meant we were second class citizens in the kingdom of god, bearing the curse of eve in silence.

last week was very helpful for me in many ways, but one of the most important was reclaiming a bit of what it means to be a woman in the kingdom of god. i have no role models for this, i'm really flying by the seat of my pants here. my giftings look so little like the women who are allowed to serve publically that i really have very few role models or a place to fix my sites on to set my course.

one of the greatest ah-ha moments that happened last week was that i have modeled myself and the use of my gifts after men because there are so few women role models that are similar to my personality and passions. setting my course to track after a male role model has brought me a lot of disaster. i am not a man. when i try to use my gifts and model the masculine (because i know no other way) i am floundering and off-key, i am also not well received and people can sense my ackwardness and discomfort so much so that it becomes their own.

i don't know if this is making any sense, but what i know is that in order to use my gifts and passions in the kingdom i must find a way to do so as a woman, not as a woman trying to be a male version of a woman. this has nothing to do with sexuality, it has to do with owning my soul. i just truly don't know what it looks like to do that. i so long to minister from my soul, instead of trying to create what i think it's supposed to look like and making everyone, especially myself very uncomfortable.

the only place where i have had any success is in the classroom. i have had many positive role models in this area - i know what it means to be myself infront of a classroom, i am at home there. i just don't have a clue what it looks like to be 'me' in any other situation in the kingdom, yet.

i am surrounded by women who either are totally comfortable in their frilly, tablecloth, hospitality or fake it really well. i just know i've tried, and i suck at it. i really do. but i can't seem to figure out how to walk away from that stereotype and be myself. heck, i don't even know what 'myself' really looks like.

i feel like a version of me. i never realized this before last week. i never really knew how totally dissatisfied i am with the 'status quo' here. i have attempted for four years to find my niche at our church. the need is great, everyone is SO busy, overworked and in need of help, but every time i volunteer i am shrugged off or patronized, smiled at and not called. okay, i've got the hint. i get it. there isn't any place for me here, i'm okay with that, but i can't really believe that is true.

as far as my church is concerned i'm not 'fit' to lead a table discussion group at the women's bible study. i'm not trying to brag, but i really know my bible. i would have no problem leading the study, i can understand not being asked to do that, it's quite a status left to the sr. pastor's wife and her friends, but not even a small group, it just stuns me.

i went through the 301 class and my interview last january and was told 'well, it will probably be november before we have anything for you'... well, it's november and here i sit. it's not like i'm looking to do up front power things either. i was volunteering for administrative things, for which i have tons of work experience, and still i am overlooked. it's such a weird place to be, my husband is on staff, but they have no need of me. i help with his ministry, but will not sacrifice my children for theirs, so maybe that's what it's about, i really don't know.

i just know it feels really good to be getting this 'out'. it's been making me a bit nuts. i lived with it before, but now that i've experienced real community and been with other women who truly accepted me for who i am (granted it was only 5 days, but i don't think it was artificial in any way) and i saw/felt what it was like to be a part of something bigger than myself - and it felt good, really good.

i started to verbalize some of this with liam and he's not receiving it well. he thinks he needs to fix it, or that i'm becoming dissatisfied and therefore it means i think it's time to 'move on' or oh heck, i really don't know what he's thinking, other than it makes him really uncomfortable.

and maybe i do think it's time to move on. i have no heart for the seeker sensitive church any longer, that i am sure of. people matter more to me than programs now. i'm tired of being so busy with nothing that i don't even know my neighbors.

i know that this means i need to divest myself of churchy junk and invest myself here in my community, i'm just not sure where to start.

being female in my church growing up meant no one got to serve, i think it's almost worse here, only the pre-approved women, who are very similar and like-minded get the stamp of approval. it's like a popularity club and i didn't make the cut. i tried to re-make myself into their image and i just ended up hating me as much as i disliked them. i know there's got to be a solution. i know god has protected me from ministering in an unsafe environment, but it still is so frustrating and discouraging to be sifted and found wanting.

i could even handle that if they verbalized why. if they took the time to mentor me, or give me small tasks where i would be allowed to prove myself.

i guess i am ready to move on. to find a place better suited to both of us. i know that will freak my family out. i don't mean tomorrow, but i do know i need some hope, something to look forward to. i am normally a really content person. i just know that i tasted something sweet and i know there is more of it 'out there' - i just don't like the thought of not having it again.

thanks for listening to me whine. i feel a lot better putting this out there. this would be a lot easier if i had a career that met this need, there isn't. i've never wanted anything other than to fulfill the call god has on my life. i'm figuring out what that is and what it looks like, but not how or where to use it yet. i know that will come, i just wish it was sooner rather than later.

Friday, November 12, 2004

the world is just a little brighter now

woo hoo!

jen's published!

comment problems??

i have gotten two amazing emails from great guys encouraging me and also telling me that they are having problems with my comments (thanks guys!)...

i love my comments because that is where community happens in the blog world and i'm at a loss. is anyone else using haloscan experiencing this problem??

could it be firefox?? or a different browser not allowing windows to open?? any help (and this is frustrating because if you are having problems commenting that means it will probably have to be an email) or trouble shooting suggestions would really be appreciated.

you can email me at emergingsideways AT gmail.com, thanks!

how do i get to 2007 when i can't even get through the weekend?

one of my favorite things about this past week was the vision statement. after we all birthed our mission statements we envisioned where we'd be in 3 years and put our dream on paper so we were able to have a destination for our mission. i have the gift of seeing what others do not see.

i have vision. this was a wonderful step for me. i enjoyed it freely and gave voice to every hope and dream i held for myself and for my family. and i dreamed really big. as i awoke at 3:00 this morning i began to fret about all of the things that had to happen, all the things on our list, and i realized that i was not going to get the time to put my action statement (how you get from your mission to your vision) together within the week's deadline.

this is where the rubber hits the road for me. we have a friend who told us long ago that we'd have to have 12 kids to accomplish all of the ideas that liam and i had for god. we have been dreamers, not do-ers. i long to be a do-er - but it's so much work. yuck. there i said it - i am lazy, so damn lazy. if i don't have a deadline breathing down my neck it doesn't get done. how do so many people become so industrious? how can i harness all of this vision and actually turn it into something tangible, something that really helps people.

it's like our house has this vortex, where once you enter you're (i'm) just so content to be here i don't need to leave... or do... or challenge myself. i was so ready to conquer all of this when i was away from home, but now that i'm home and things have begun again here i wish my vision statement said something like 'survive until november 2007'. that looks far more do-able than the monsterous list i've given myself.

i realized that since i was awake i needed to take this time doing instead of fretting. if i have learned anything from the angel in the red blazer, fretting wastes my time and energy. i want this vision more than i've ever wanted anything in my life (except to be able to have my babies). but i am truly overwhelmed, i don't like to do anything that i might fail at, and this list - this action statement i need to do is so concrete, so real, and even measurable that i am frozen.

can fire be frozen?? inside joke... sorry.

oh triune god, help. i think we both want the things in my vision statement to come to pass. if that is so, help me. help me to become unstuck, unfrozen. blow wind on the embers of these coals within me and fan the flames, i feel as if i am in danger of loosing all that i've accomplished and envisioned. i don't want to go backwards. please god. give me the courage to continue. and everything else i don't even know how to ask for. amen.

Thursday, November 11, 2004

angel in a red blazer

i mentioned in my last post that i was pretty stressed that getting to the airport 'on time' was out of my control. i was pretty drained emotionally by that time in the trip and afraid that i'd be reduced to a puddle of tears if anything kept me from returning to my family on time.

i was raised by a mother who would complain to me 'do you know how long i've been out here waiting for you? 30 minutes!!!' well, that meant because i was 15 minutes late, and she was 15 minutes early... time is stressful for me because of that constant shame and stress.

so when the airport says 'check in 2 hours before your flight' i believe them, and am there 2 hours and 15 minutes early! :) not possible on monday. the earliest bus to seatac was 6:00 a.m. - arriving at 11:00 a.m. - for a 12:20 flight...

plus a customs/immigration stop in the middle, for which i had mistakenly left home without my birth certificate. i worried i was going to get that border guard with 1 day left before retirement who just wanted to make everyones life a little more difficult. all my worrying was in vain as he kindly asked 'where were you born' - i responded 'wisconsin' and he didn't need to see any paperwork other than my declaration form. whew... one down... one to go.

the northwest lines were really bad. and i had prayed before we arrived at the airport that what was supposed to happen was going to happen. i also told god that any money that i'd have to pay for a missed flight would be plucked out of the kingdom, just in case he needed that reminder... (ugh, yes, i really did that...)

well, i am snaking through the line watching a little (and i mean little) neo-nazi, military man have an absolute fit that he can't leave the locks on his duffle bag. it was the first reminder of the 'real world' i had after leaving the retreat. as i was standing and watching his really negative energy spin in line his polar opposite in a red blazer walks to the line up and stands directly in front of me.

she asks the crowd 'is anyone on flight 170 to minneapolis?' i look around at the group, and am the only one raising my hand. she says 'well honey, come right with me, we'll get you all checked in... is this your only bag... here, let me get your boarding pass for you...' honest. i've never seen anything like it. i jumped infront of at least 20 people, none of which i bothered to even acknowledge in my state of shock.

i arrived at my gate as they were boarding (and i even beat mr. bad energy through security! i was sure he was going to snap and shut the airport down). it was a complete reminder to me that my energy wasted in fretting could have been used in much more positive ways. anyway - it was too cool not to remember, so i've done that here.

no rest for the weary

well i've jumped in the stream that is our family schedule and it's leaving little time to ponder, contemplate and even breathe.

i know that time will come, and all of the things i am participating in right now are lovely and family time, but i so long to just have a good hour to write without interuption. that will not happen this morning.

so i thought i'd just recognize the accessories in my suitcase that don't take a lot of 'unpacking', neat connections and things god did for and around me that don't need contemplation and quiet to unpack. (this is not a complete list, nor does it mean that they don't have deeper meaning that has gone deep within me, just that they are easily written about right now). i just have time while the dishwasher is running before i can take my shower! :)

-seeing a woman walking through the airport past me a couple of times and seeing her feminine confidence (and those gorgeous tights) and thinking 'man i could never pull that off, she's so confident', and then finding out she was MY ANJ!

-meeting deb and jeff and seeing deb try to wrench that humongeous suitcase off the conveyor belt as it almost wisked her away.

-the breathtaking beauty and warmth of walking into linwood house so weary and worn from the long travels and being received with grace and hospitality so unlike anything i've ever known before.

-individual teapots at the restaurant that all were unique and works of art unto themselves. the care and the individuality of those teapots spoke of each woman's uniqueness and beauty to me. (i had espresso! in a unique little cup).

-touring town with lisa and finding the art studio and being surrounded and inspired by the beauty and creativity of that place in time. and then driving along the ocean and dreaming big dreams and sharing great stories.

-resting in my own room, in luxiorious linens, pressed just for me by my friend stephanie and prepared with love. i slept so deeply and restored my ability to be present each day, instead of clouded and exhausted as i feared i might have been.

-lunch in the 'parlor', feeling the thin space there as god interwove stories of infertility, pregnancies, adoption and pain together into a melding of hearts and hope.

-getting to observe stephanie dance around her kitchen as she prepared each luxurious dish for us to enjoy and renourish our bodies as our souls danced along.

-finding the hand of a mother in the dark.

-embracing my elemental nature and proclaiming it to the room.

-watching as the plastic falls off around a most beautiful woman as she embraces her call and rests in the awakening grace around her.

-feeling the butterfly flap it's wings.

-seeing a beautiful china doll, once discarded be embraced and nurtured with a mother's love.

-receiving gifts along the way, giving flight to my feet and a touchstone to my soul.

-needlessly fearing the border (as i had forgotten my birth certificate, for which i berated myself for mercilessly all week) and stressing over the arrival time of the bus to the airport where god sent an angel dressed as a northwest ticket agent who plucked me out of the long line of travellers as i bypassed them all like royalty. it was unlike anything i had ever experienced. (i'll give more details later).

i must go now as the dishwasher is done. happy day!

Bruderhof Communities - A Letter to the President

Bruderhof Communities - A Letter to the President

i second this, please mr. president!

Wednesday, November 10, 2004


where do i start? this has been an extraordinary week in my life. a convergence of sorts. i must unpack it slowly.

it's also freaking me out a bit to have been so vulnerable and in such a community that is now spread across the world (literally). i was "me" for the first time in a long time (publically), not for the whole time there, but "i" came to visit more frequently than ever before and it's a strange place to be.

being present is sometimes a real struggle for me, either in my past or worrying about the future is regularly where i dwell, it is usually only when i write that i am able to face the screen and dwell in the now. this has been my only safe place (publically) that i've had since college, and that had it's own issues then. but now, i have been in the community of about 18 women (i can't remember how many exactly) who allowed "me" to be "me" and actually invited "me" to come to stay, and accepted "me" as i am, warts, intensity and all. the good, the bad and the ugly. whoa.

i must unpack slowly, so i don't miss anything. so i don't misinterpret or misuse. care must be taken, because everything is so very precious. i have experienced community on a cellular level and it is good. it is very good.

thank you to those who prayed for us, you have released 12 women into the kingdom to fulfill the call that god created each one for. i know now why i'm here. why it's important to be "me". why living authentically my life, and not someone else's matters. thank you also to those of you who made this possible, financially, logistically, administratively and practically. you all created a space for me that truly valued who i am as a person, but more importantly as a woman. redemption has begun, and will continue, and for that i can hardly put into words the deep level of my gratitude. and lastly thank you 12 for sharing your passions, fears, angst and truth with me. for trusting me, for accepting me and for challenging me to join into this community. i am at a loss for words, and you all know how difficult that truly is for me! :)

i love you all!

Tuesday, November 09, 2004



as the queen of 're' (re-use, re-cycle, re-deem, etc) i think this is brilliant! i'm signing up as i blog this - thanks holly!

home safe

back to the home fires, it's late, but i'm safe, and so happy to be in the arms of my family again! wow, what a week! more later!

Saturday, November 06, 2004

this is a thin space

i am writing on holy ground. never have i experienced such community, love, acceptance and hope.

i cannot even express anything near the wonder of this week.

much kingdom work is happening here. keep praying for us.

i'll share more when i return.

miss you all!

Friday, November 05, 2004

emerging sideways...

emerging sideways...
Liam here, Bobbie is on an adventure with friends in Vancouver BC. I'm posting this here (and may get scolded for using this venue) to attract bobbie's attention. In the malestrom of activity leading up to her departure - she neglected to leave me a contact # and everyone who knows us seem to be picking "Buck and Pink's" bedtime as "THE" time to call. There little faces tell the whole story - the phone rings the beam with anticipation - only to dad say "oh hello ...friend we haven't talk to in weeks (or months) ...so glad you called, and I hate to put you off, but we're waiting for a call from bobbie..."

So help me test the blogosphere's reach...you all know who reads who. Let's see if we can get word t Bobbie via "Blog 'o gram" that all is well but we can't call her. (And that we MISS her and that I definitely consider the bed way too big without her)

Liam's thot for today: Heed where you feed. What you consume with your eyes, ears and mouth - is who you become.


Tuesday, November 02, 2004

i voted! how 'bout you?

well, i donned my 'seek justice' t-shirt and grabbed my 'reallivepreacher.com' book and walked the four blocks in 75 degree weather to my polling station reading to wait and wait.

i had missed the early rush, and beat the lunch rush, so i was in and out with all of my senior citizen, democratic neighbors. it gave me great joy to stand in that tiny little church basement with those adorable elderly voters and cast my vote for john kerry. it took all of 3 minutes, but i had a lovely walk, in probably the warmest weather i will experience for months.

packing is almost complete and i leave at 4:15 a.m. tomorrow to head to the airport. we would all appreciate your prayers, meeting 9 other bloggers and sharing this experience together is such a blessing, one i am just astonished to be experiencing! health, safety and luggage arriving with us would be really appreciated if you added them (us) to your prayer list!

have a wonderful week! i will miss you all!

healing the rift between us

as i left our church last night i was again overcome with a sick, deep feeling in the pit of my heart. how can such well meaning people be so completely unable to see how they are being manipulated in this campaign?

those there last night to 'pray the vote' all assumed they had god's will already figured out and had bought every word carl rove is selling. please don't misinterpret this as 'because they don't agree with me they are wrong'. that couldn't be further from the truth. what i am shocked with is how they can't even admit even one fear, concern or disappointment with gwb, his presidency or his campaign - not one. they have switched off their brains and are believing every ounce of the propoganda, and swallowing it like it's covered in chocolate sauce.

this scares me church. terrifies me actually. what kind of false teaching can creep in the door now because they've become so inhebriated by the power of this election? what division is caused by their complete inability to see these complex issues as such. the reductionism of this year's campaign sickens me, and yet they don't see it. not one little thing. i hear them spewing sound bytes like they've been programmed into their brains - and i want to knock that glazed look out of their eyes. what happens when 'next' (2008) says everything they want to hear again, but doesn't mean any of it. (i won't be so bold as to suggest that this year, but i'm suspicious of that too). they have sold the farm for power.

their rallies are tear driven, emotional amway conventions, they are truly worshipping our president, their adoration has crossed over into dangerous, dangerous places.

chris at radio rebellion has also introduced the thought that while we pray for god to heal our land we have no interest in any of the humbling necessary to get there. somehow we think that god is addressing those outside the faith with this - that 'those people' need to get their act together for god to bless our land. that couldn't be further from the truth. it is us. we are the ones who need to be on our knees humbling ourselves - not judging in arrogant disdain.

i don't know what happens today. i think america is strong enough to endure the next 4 years no matter what. but i'm not so sure the church is. how did we loose this seperation between church and state? where did it go? i want it back, and i want it now. we have lost our voice and had it replaced by clanging symbols lacking in love and compassion. we care more about special interest groups who care more about their pockets than their hearts. those interests aren't god's interests. there is no room for the poor, the disenfranchised or the different.

tom sine has written an article called 'america's culture wars: in search of a third way' - it is important. we need to understand that the 'religious right' is non-existent in other christian cultures around the world. i know that we americans feel superiority in ways that shun our ability to learn from others, but we must if we are ever going to heal what ails us. we must heal the great divide that this has caused if we are ever going to be effective in addressing those deep issues that touch the heart of god.

you can find that article here at the ooze.

hoping for a free ipod - update

wanna get a free ipod?? i do, please help! :)

okay, i may be gullible, but i've heard of bloggers actually getting theirs, so i'm taking the chance.

i just had to sign up 5 friends (sorry if you were one of them...) and fulfill one of the items. i used 2 weeks free blockbuster dvd rental. we use netflix, thought i'd see what blockbuster was like. i just have to fulfill the two weeks without cancelling and entice 5 of you to do the same... wanna help??

help me and yourself to a new ::free ipod::

i just need a couple more - you know you want one too! :)

Monday, November 01, 2004

my 300th post!

well, how significant. i feel like i should honor this in some way, although i can't think of how.

i hate 'fall back' daylight savings time. it throws my internal clock off massively. i was finally starting to be able to sleep past 4:44 and somehow was making it to 5:45 - now i'm back to 4:44 again... how 'bout next year we move the clock forward 23 hours and re-live another day again? somehow that wouldn't seem as annoying to me.

i think it's just college students who enjoy day light savings time. an extra hour to party, and then sleep in. it's lost on this old feeble mind this morning. i'm wiped out and the day hasn't even started yet.

okay, post 300, and i'm in a fairly rotten mood - so how 'bout i count my blessings, maybe that will help.

-we have been given (free!) a 1987 volvo station wagon. be still my little swedish heart! there is no vehicle in this world that i could have wanted more! (now i am a liberal, volvo station wagon driving, soccer mom! - ha ha!)

-i got an nearly new, ice blue columbia sportswear winter coat for $20 and a pair of baby blue sorel boots for $15 at salvation army - jesus wants me to be warm this winter! :)

-we have had the most glorious fall, and even weather to enjoy it.

-i am heading on my first ever solo vacation in my life to meet many blogging friends! and i get to see a part of the country(s) i've always longed to see!

-although i'm not in it i have a warm, comfy bed with a sleepy giant of a husband resting peacefully upstairs who is strong, soft, capable, deep, interesting, a great cook, a wonderful partner and my best friend, who just happens to have the day off today. hurray!

-an incredible 8 1/2 year old daughter who has a wonderful free spirit and joy for life. she is so unlike me that everything is an exploration for us and she is growing into a lovely young lady who is spiritual, kind, tenderhearted, friendly, creative and bright. and she still thinks that her mom is someone she wants to spend time with, and for that i am blessed.

-my little pistol son who is 6 1/2 and so quick and bright, and funny, oh he has such a wonderful sense of humor. he still asks me to scratch his back and lets me cuddle him. he's respectful, passionate, feels things deeply and a joy to be around. he's so similar to my emotional make-up that it terrifies me sometimes, yet he is learning balance and discretion, and is learning delayed gratification. his one dimpled smile can take even the biggest drudgery and turn it into fun. he's going to do great things for god.

-my father is still with us, relatively healthy and relational. it's a blessing to have him close, even for the small times of connection that come between he and our family. when he chooses to eat with us and caresses my fingers while we hold hands in prayer, or squeezes them when my children pray and touch his heart. when he gets talkative and starts to tell me of his childhood, or military days and fills in blanks he doesn't even know exist. he's generous, helpful and hopeful and always wants to fix it and make it better even if i don't want him to. our children are learning that generations are necessary to build community and strength, and offer perspective and wisdom that comes with age. i don't know how long he's going to be with us, but i am grateful.

-our home is warm, safe and relatively clean and organized, and just filled with potential for fix up and improvements.

-our church is healthy and faces problems head on. it's not perfect, or very progressive, but my children are grounded and loved and cared for like we care for other's children. we have community and friends, and those relationship are deepening, and we have learned much in our time here.

-we have a plan for the future. we have begun to dream, to brainstorm, to engage and to plan. we have hope and direction and yet are open to any and all turns and twists that god may have for us. it is fluid and grace-filled, passionate and warm. it gives me something to look forward to and brings me much joy when i take it out of that box in my brain and hold it in open hands, offering it to god. it is good.

-i have a relationship with the triune god that i have never had before. while i have walked away from a safe and orderly faith, that sometimes looks so attractive when i sit amongst the questions, i realize that i am not going back, to go back is slavery and bondage. i have the spectrum between the black and white now, i have a god of shadow and light, where full color depth is far more interesting and rich than the 2-dimensional plastic jesus i used to worship. yes it's harder, scarier and sometimes more frustrating not to have all of the answers, but the intimate personalities of the triune god bring me closer into that constant contact and a fuller understanding of the global implications of faith in the context of all cultures, not just my own. it is truly a dangerous wonder.

i'm sure there are more, but those are the biggies, and i needed to remind myself of the biggies today. god is good, and i'm in a much better mood!

take the pagitt challenge

okay, doug has challenged that those of us who are voting and have made up our minds to spend some time thinking about what happens if the 'other guy' wins.

he writes:

I think each candidate for president should be asked, "Given the fact that the other guy has the potential to be president, what do you think would be the upside to that? What benefits would we see if he wins?"
my favorite line is:

When you ask a fundamentalist (the ultimate extreme of "my side" "your side" people) to change their mind, you are asking then to concede far more than a point. You are asking them to leave a community.

Opinions on topics should not create "sides".
coming from a 'fundamentalist background' i want to stay far away from that danger again, so i will take his challenge and try to come up with some 'good things' that might happen if gwb wins on tuesday (or whenever it is they declare a winner).

gosh, this is harder than i thought i might be...

-our child tax benefit won't change.
-he loves his daddy and wanted to get the guy who tried to kill him. (that's why we're in this misguided war really isn't it?)
-i could brainstorm a ministry that might be able to get federal funding for 'faith based initiatives'.
-99% of my church will be happy and i won't have to listen to them whine for 4 years.
-i won't have to take any responsibility for having voted for him.
-he'll have to clean up the mess he's made in iraq.

okay, i'm done. i truly can't think of any more... have i become a democratic fundamentalist? help me!

i know it won't be the end of the world if he wins, we've made it through 4 years, 4 more isn't going to end the world as we know it. i just really want god out of the war. and i'd really like gwb to take responsibility for the mistakes he's made. until he does that i really don't feel like i can trust him.

oh and dick chaney scares the hell out of me. too much power with a bad attitude. i'm also a bit freaked out where that power level will lie if they get in again, and then pass the torch onto someone like arnold or rudolph who don't have the church's best interests at heart... that line of separation between church and state really has gotten blurry hasn't it? remember church - that line was there to protect US!

i will lay this at the feet of james dobson if this intimacy between church and state goes poorly for the church. okay, rant over.