Wednesday, September 28

Very Annoyed

Okay, is anyone else posting then getting a comment in your email saying something like "hey you might like this site", then you go to it and it's some random add? I don't think that I like that. It's too reminiscent of viruses. Ezer no likey. I think I'm gonna have to complain to the people that run this thing.

If an individual is doing this for kicks, go get a life. Let's not be petty little junior high schoolers, please. Show a little respect for other people's writing. I know that sounds a little harsh, but I actually like getting comments. I like reading what other people have to say about my thoughts and opinions. When someone does something like this it's rude, and it's treating the person like thier thoughts and opinions don't matter. Maybe they don't to you, but those posts can be like a part of an author's soul. They're taking a risk in posting them for all the world to see. Give them a little respect, please.

Okay, I've turned on word verification, I'm sorry if that messes anyone up, but I am not going to stand for this. Turns out, this is all probably some computer sending out comments to anyone who updates. I read the dashboard anouncement and turned on the verification, hopefuly that means no more stupid ads on my site. Thank you.

Sunday, September 25

I'm Turning into Faulkner; To Many Thoughts Up in My Head.

(I think that's a song...)

I'm having difficulty putting my thoughts into words lately. Everything I need to say or want to say is coming days after the time to say it has passed.

I feel very despondent; I looked that up to make sure I was using it correctly. Discouraged, dispirited, and wretched. Yep, that's right word.

There are a lot of things going on in my life right now that have been spiritually crushing. They're things that I've never had to deal with before; and frankly, considering the circumstances, am a little surprised that I'm ending up having to.

I've grown up around people who are very firm in their beliefs. Their relationship with God was very serious; a day to day living out. So, when I came and was submerged into this new environment with new people, I didn't expect to see the almost careless adaptation of religion. It was a kind of shock to realize that because other religions are not based on a relationship of trust and love with an omnipotent God, people feel that they can "choose and pick" what parts they want to incorporate into their lives. And the Christians that I am in regular contact with don't seem to have the kind of love for God that I have. That surprises me. But I have to remember that a couple of years ago, I probably would have looked the same.

Reflecting, I think that the difference lies in the fact that I have chosen to rely on my Protector and Provider. I have come to the point in my life where I have had to choose who I am going to put my trust in. Humans naturaly want to feel safe. In our terms, being safe requires some sort of barrier against others, society, those of the opposite sex, the world, whatever an individual feels as a threat to their state of confidence. Notice that I used the word confidence. Feeling safe is not about feeling secure on a physical level, it's about feeling secure on an emotional and mental level. Not that feeling safe physically isn't a part of that. The actions of a husband or boyfriend who physically abuses a woman, or a bully on the playground, or any of the other hundreds of situations are wrong, there's no way around that. What I'm trying to point out is that as a global society, we do not like to put ourselves in a situation that jeopardizes our state of confidence. So we put up barriers against the world. I am probably the best example of this. When it comes to sports, well, it never comes to sports because I never do them. I feel inferior and unskilled. My confidence just up and goes out the window. So I don't. My poor mom never knew what to do with me. She would sign me up for some type of sport and a month later, she'd be trying something else. After a while, she just gave up on me, said I was just too much like my dad in the stubbornness department.

And it's not just sports, I do it in a lot of other situations, too. Boys are another big department. I feel insecure, so I don't take the initiative to interact with them. But it would really take up too much room to explain to you all my little insecurities, and there are other things I want to write.

Do you see my point in all this roundabout chit chat? People want security, they want to be confident in themselves, but they go about it in all the wrong ways. When I put my confidence in God (and by the way, this didn't happen until years after I became a Christian) that's it. I don't need to protect myself. There is something bigger that I have in me that I have confidence in. And it's such a glorious relief!

We're gonna switch topics a little bit. I have to have some way to get all this junk out of my system. I was in a difficult situation the past couple of weeks. I really had to trust, then and now, that God knows what's best and that He has a perfect plan that's coming into fruition in the midst of this. But on another level, it bothered me that I didn't feel anything about the situation. At first, I was a little hurt and sad and angry, but now, after all those emotions have fizzled off, I didn't feel anything. Nothing, not even anxiety over how everything was going to be resolved. It's bothered me for a little while. I feel like I should be feeling something. I'm feeling at times a great nothing growing up inside of me. An emptiness I am finding hard to explain. It's not that disgusting ashamed hollow feeling you get when you've stepped off of God's path; it's not that deep, if you can understand that. I know that God has been there these past few weeks and He still is. I'm constantly turning to Him for encouragement and comfort. The only way I can think to explain it is like this:

I've sometimes imagined the human soul to be like a tangled mass of string or pulsing threads of energy. At times, in the less tangled parts, god touches it and things begin to grow and get all twisted round in the fibers of the soul. On the physical plain, they sometimes manifest themselves as my art work or concepts for stories. Sometimes they never manifestin the physical and I'm stuck trying to explain something that's too tangled up in my spirit, in who I am, for me to really describe. Other times, I'll try and let it out and people twist it all around and make it into something it's not. But in the end, everything's a part of me.

Here's where the nothingness comes in. Imagine this glowing ball of string is attached to the inside of me by many lengths of itself stretched out and attached to surrounding walls. The soul is suspended there in the unexplainable realm of the spirit. The emptiness is growing up around my spirit and all the pieces suspending the spirit in my body are being severed, and now my soul is sinking into that nothingness.

That could be interpreted as being very suicidal, couldn't it? Hmm. Well, just to let you know, I'm not. That's just how it's feeling inside of me. Very unpoetic, but there you have it.

Quick question for all of you who have posted here before: Why is poetry so much more . . . "unique" and considered to be so far above more continuous forms of writing? I was reading Out of the Silent Planet by C. S. Lewis and one of the societies he creates totally revolves around poetry and song. Then my Shakespearean professor commented on how everyone is some form of poet. Write me a little something back, I want to hear what your thoughts are.

And while on the subject of poetry, try hanging out in Psalms 119 this week, read the Message version as well, it's a great thing to read when you're feeling down. It's full of all of these awesome praises to God about His goodness. Really, check it out.

I'm sorry if this all seems a little random and uncoordinated to you guys, I'm really tired and can't think properly. Hope you got the scattered and helter-scelter main ideas.

Thursday, September 15

Spelling, Part II

I'm back to say this: Perelandra is spelt with an "e" not with an "a". I had the book right beside me the entire time I was writting and I didn't see that. Wow. Thanks for catching it Catherine.

Wednesday, September 14

Tick, Tock Goes the Cookoo Clock

Oh, I haven't updated in such a long time! There is so much to talk about and so little space (well actually, there is infinite space, since this is the internet). I have so many things that I want to say, but I don't feel that I have the words or understanding to express them. There has been a lot of interesting things that I've been reading or watching or, hearing, etc. I feel like its all accumulated and built up in my head up to this point, but I can't express them.

Well, first things first. Everyone needs to go see Unleashed with Jet Li. I know, a lot of you are probably rolling your eyes and thinking "yeah, right". Here's my advice to you, stop thinking! I know that the plot is a little unrealistic. So what? Go, watch the movie and just enjoy it. People spend too much time today analyzing things. They can't see or understand the mystery that accompanies everyday life. If you get too tied up in the problems you miss out on the little God-pictures. I went to see the movie just for the sake of it. I wasn't expecting some deeper meaning or amazing plot to suddenly develop, I just went. But wow, guys, I mean really, WOW. In the middle of the movie I was hit with this revelation about the events happening in the story. There was some powerful spiritual messages in there. It was really amazing. I don't want to give anything away for those of you who go rent it, or whatever. I am going to say these few things however, I'll try not to spoil it for anyone. There is this one character who is played by Morgan Freeman (yay!), and he makes his living tuning pianos. Throughout the story he guides Danny (Jet Li) down this road of redemption, and in the end it's only when Danny is at his weakest that Freeman can really step in and make things right in his life. And there is so much more, temptation, sin, the Enemy coming in and trying to ring your bells, to call people back to worship at their alters away from God... I'm telling you, It was really profound.

Second thing before I tie everything up, go read C.S. Lewis' Space trilogy. It begins with Out of the Silent Planet, continues in Perelandra, and ends in That Hideous Strength. Wow, another hard core testimony to how God can work in our live through any type of modern day media. Of course, C.S. Lewis was purposely trying to create this fictional environment to reflect the majesty and mystery of God, but there is so much there that is revealed... I can hardly understand it myself. I was telling my dad earlier that I've never read something that resonated as so true in my soul, that made so much sense; but was so hard for me to grasp. I had to put Perelandra down and graduate down to The Hobbit. But do you understand what I'm trying to say about the book? What he was describing made so much sense, seemed so right, that I couldn't process what I was reading. I was reading the part of the book where Ransom (the main character) meets this literary representation of Eve before the Fall. I had never understood what living in the garden had meant, or the concept of being without sin... And there was so much more! I'm still, ah! I can't explain what I'm feeling. There are so many concepts that Lewis illustrates that have never seemed so plain or so beautiful.

At first it was almost intolerable . . . But later on, he discovered that it was intolerable only at certain moments . . . When a man asserts his own independence and feels that now at last he's on his own. When you felt like that, then the very air seemed too crowded to breathe; a complete fullness seemed to be excluding you from a place which, nevertheless, you were unable to leave. But then you gave into the thing, gave yourself up to it, there was no burden to be borne. It became not a load but a medium, a sort of splendor as of eatable, drinkable, breathable gold, which fed and carried you and not only poured into you but out from you as well. Taken the wrong way it suffocated; taken the right way, it made terrestrial life seem, by comparison, a vacuum.

Perelandra, C.S. Lewis

Thursday, September 1

Spelling and Shakespeare

Okay, wow. How did you guys make it through that last post? There were so many spelling errors that even I caught them! And you know that they're errors when I catch them! Anyway, I think I caught all of them, but feel free to prove me wrong!

Here's something that I was chewing on earlier today: what makes a good writer? I know that that's a really broad question that has a lot of possible answers, but what makes someone a "Shakespeare"? Whenever I study Shakespeare or anyone else that is considered a master in their field, I always wonder if there was ever anyone greater. Is someone great because they took an opportunity and that path led them to discovery? Or are they great because they fit themselves to a generation and their fads and tastes? Shakespeare and de Vinci are still considered masters in their respective fields to this day, so you have to wonder what people saw in them that isn't in other people.

Why don't we see more masters today? Somehow I think that we've lost the awe and wonder that there was in art and music and the written and spoken word when we were less connected as a world. People had a real chance to make something of themselves when everyone wasn't a celebrity.

Part of it is that there never seems to be anything masterful about art in general when you're living through a period. It's always after everyone's dead or too old to appreciate it that the real genius is recognized.

But then I've digressed. I asked what makes a good writer. I really have no idea. Everyone's always told me that Shakespeare was good and I've always believed them. That's not to say I don't enjoy Shakespeare when I can understand him.

Maybe in the end it's not really about what you see or hear or read. I think that really it all boils down to that feeling deep inside you that you get when you hear a beautiful piece of music or watch an amazing play. Or that feeling you get after finishing one of those books and you can't explain how or why you liked it, it just filled you like most other books don't fill you. The Greeks called it agape and then the translators of the gospels and Paul's letters dredged it up out of Greek dictionaries and applied it to the kind of love that only God has for us and only He can give. Somehow I think that He's manifested in those "really good movies" and books and music. Even if the author or writer or whoever didn't intend for that, it's still that God given talent that they are expressing, and we get a piece of that through their works.