SO. I’ve now made it nine days without soda. I know, so impressive. I got to visit the Lovetts this weekend! It was amazing, just living with them, just something so right about all of it. Got to hang out with Cat, Jess, Kayla, her future husband Justin, Aslan, his girlfriend (Sammie!), Kristian, Chris, his wonderful rocker wife (Jackie), and the fabulous Jairus and Sonny. Oh! And I got to see Jeremy and his wife Jackie. It was great. Oh. And a jumping spider from Albuquerque. That Jess decided would be a great idea to let loose in the basement. In the words of Jairus: “ish”. Says me, the one terrified of spiders. Not bugs. Not snakes. Just spiders. Who knows what that little sucker was up to. Jess wasn’t so worried. I was. Luckily, I didn’t have a run in with him; although, there was a bit of cobweb on my blanket, which means that one was lurking near.
Besides that: everything was perfect. I cried. I do that every time I visit them, and the reason is this: they actually believe in spiritual warfare. Everywhere else I go, people (even christains–and I would argue–mostly christians) like to joke about it and act like it isn’t a real thing that we have to deal with. Which is completely frustrating. You can’t read the bible without picking it up. As C.S. Lewis once put it “You don’t have a Soul. You are a Soul. You have a body.” I get freakin terrified when I think about the fact that there is a spiritual battle being waged over my soul, and at the same time it is COMPLETELY IRRATIONAL to be afraid as my soul has already been won by the good side. It’s just dealing with the fact that there is evil and there is good. So often in my life I shove spiritual warfare on the back of the bookshelf behind everything else because I want to forget that it actually happens. I’m afraid of it. And then I go to a place where spiritual warfare is acknowledged and it’s like a slap in the face every time–realizing once again that spiritual warfare is all too real.
And yet. I go back. Again. And again. And again. And you know why? I’d rather not live in ignorance.
There. There I find real love. I find real grace. And I find a real acknowledgement of who God really is. These people are living out faith. Every day. Every hour. There is something so right in all of it. And so I keep going back. And I hope to never stop.
Well. That’s that. Gosh I love them.
Also, on a side note. I think I’m developing bronchitis. Got the lovely phlegmy cough coming on. Hence the “my bronchi think that I don’t need them anymore”. Well. That’s all.
6) Start a fire. With your teeth. Or matches. Whichever you prefer.
6b) If you decide to go with the teeth idea, please be aware that your dental insurance may be affected by above exercise.
23) Attempt to blow up parliament with said fire.
23b) Remember remember the fifth of November.
23c) Buy a Guy Fawkes mask.
1) Try flying. At least once. Shoot for maybe a five foot drop. For the risky and those who don’t care about whether they kiss pavement or not, I’d suggest the Empire State Building. Disclaimer: I take no responsibility for your death, if it should occur, so don’t tell your families about this blog.
46) Develop an addiction and/or obsession. For example, I am obsessed with my addiction of buying dvds. And boots. Hence, the large collection of dvds that contains lots of people wearing boots.
46b) The day will come when you have to decide between a pair of really spiffy boots and Robin Hood with Russel Crowe. Go for the boots.
46c) You can purchase Robin Hood some other day. Or ask for it for Christmas.
80) Do not name your female feline “Lenny”. Apparently gender confusion is just as prevalent in the cat family as in the nuclear family.
23450987) Subscribe to some garbage magazine at least once in your life. Mine is Entertainment. So worth it.
53) Make it a point to relate to mythical characters. Or at least Frodo.
54) If you don’t know who Frodo is then you should watch The Lord of the Rings directed by Peter Jackson.
54b) Which is also composed by Howard Shore. Buy the soundtracks to these movies. You will not regret this purchase. (Yes there are three films in The Lord of the Rings.)
54c) If you managed to miss the pop cultural phenomenon that was The Lord of the Rings at the dawn of the New Millennium then start chasing that train. It left the station nine years ago.
5) Forget about social constraints.
“You are in the world but not of the world.”
I feel like so many christians misconstrue this statement. And I’m one of them. But then it hit me straight in the face as I was lying in bed. How many of you have seen The Two Towers? There is an extremely poignant scene that takes place between the Ents and the Hobbits, Merry and Pippin.
The Ents hold an Entmoot, or meeting, to decide what to do about the forces of both Isenguard (Saruman) and Mordor (Sauron). They spend not only hours, but countless days and weeks deciding what to do about it. They argue and argue and waver and waver and finally reach a conclusion: that they will do nothing. That they will compleletely separate themselves from the present situation. Exactly what Christians do. We think that by avoiding R-rated films, violence, cussing, and all other “heretical ideals” that we are protected from them. This is ignorance. Just because you pretend something doesn’t exist doesn’t mean that it won’t affect the world.
When Merry hears the Ents verdict to ignore the battles ravaging and raging throughout Middle-earth he does the most unlikely thing a hobbit would do. This small breed stands up to a huge Ent–a keeper of the forest and keeper of lore. He exclaims emphatically: “BUT YOU’RE PART OF THIS WORLD!”
TREEBEARD: The Ents cannot hold back this war. We must weather such things as we have always done.
MERRY: How can that be your decision?
TREEBEARD: This is not our war.
MERRY: But your part of this world! Aren’t you? You must help. Please. You must do something.
TREEBEARD: You are young and brave, master Merry. But your part in this tale is over. Go back to your home.
PIPPIN: Maybe Treebeard’s right. We don’t belong here, Merry. It’s too big for us. What can we do in the end? We’ve got the Shire. Maybe we should go home.
MERRY: The fires of Isengard will spread. And the woods of Tuckborough and Buckland will burn. And… and all that was once green and good in this world will be gone. There won’t be a Shire, Pippin.
Whether we pretend that violence, abuse, war, death, and pain doesn’t happen or we make ourselves aware of it–these things will still happen. SO instead of distancing ourselves from everything that makes the church what it should be–reaching out to the broken, understanding them–instead of being what the Church as an organization is now–a condemning, hush hush society run by tax collectors–we should step up. And stop pretending that in our perfect little Christian bubble no harm will come to us. More harm will come to us by extracting ourselves. But even worse–more harm will come to the world we should be reaching out to from our own ineptitude and ignorance.
The truth hurts.
The Burning Babe
As I in hoary winter’s night stood shivering in the snow,
Surprised I was with sudden heat which made my heart to glow;
And lifting up a fearful eye to view what fire was near,
A pretty babe all burning bright did in the air appear;
Who, scorched with excessive heat, such floods of tears did shed
As though his floods should quench his flames which with his tears were fred.
“Alas,” quoth he, “but newly born in fiery heats I fry,
Yet none approach to warm their hearts or feel my fire but I!
My faultless breast the furnace is, the fuel wounding thorns,
Love is the fire, and sighs the smoke, the ashes shame and scorns;
The fuel justice layeth on, and mercy blows the coals,
The metal in this furnace wrought are men’s defiled souls,
For which, as now on fire I am to work them to their good,
So will I melt into a bath to wash them in my blood.”
With this he vanished out of sight and swiftly shrunk away,
And straight I called unto mind that it was Christmas day.
Guildenstern: Whose serve?
Guildenstern: Hesitation! Love… one.
Rosencrantz: Whose go?
Rosencrantz: Why not?
Guildenstern: What for?
Rosencrantz: Foul! No synonyms! One… all.
Guildenstern: What in God’s name is going on?
Rosencrantz: Foul! No rhetoric! Two… one.
Guildenstern: What does it all add up to?
Rosencrantz: Can’t you guess?
Guildenstern: Were you addressing me?
Rosencrantz: Is there anyone else?
Rosencrantz: How would I know?
Guildenstern: Why do you ask?
Rosencrantz: Are you serious?
Guildenstern: Was that rhetoric?
Guildenstern: Statement! Two all. Game point.
Rosencrantz: What’s the matter with you today?
Guildenstern: Are you deaf?
Rosencrantz: Am I dead?
Guildenstern: Yes or no?
Rosencrantz: Is there a choice?
Guildenstern: Is there a God?
Rosencrantz: Foul! No non sequiturs! Three… two, one game all.
Guildenstern: What’s your name?
Rosencrantz: What’s yours?
Guildenstern: You first.
Rosencrantz: Statement! One… love.
Guildenstern: What’s your name when you’re at home?
Rosencrantz: What’s yours?
Guildenstern: When I’m at home?
Rosencrantz: Is it different at home?
Guildenstern: What home?
Rosencrantz: Haven’t you got one?
Guildenstern: Why do you ask?
Rosencrantz: What are you driving at?
Guildenstern: What’s your name?
Rosencrantz: Repetition! Two… love. Match point.
Guildenstern: Who do you think you are?
Rosencrantz: Rhetoric! Game and match!
Right. Well, I have now become that person. Although, technically, Amy and Dawn are also that person with me. So it’s not so lonely. Well, it all came about because my older brother, Keenan, got married to this amazing person, Michelle, on Sunday. And then they didn’t go on their honeymoon on Monday. In fact, I went out for supper with them on Monday night. And so I’m thinking, uh, when are you going on your honeymoon? They had said earlier in the week that they would be getting back next Monday, which isn’t a problem. But I’m thinking, why haven’t you left yet? So. Anyways. Tuesday rolls around. And I decide not to text them. Just in case. Who wants to be the person who texts someone on their honeymoon, right?
Well. All was going well. And then Wednesday rolled around. Bum bum bum. Cue incidental dramatic music. Headed off to Psycho Suzie’s with Dawn and Amy. Which was, by the way, one of the most brilliant experiences ever. So much fun! So much pizza and cheese curds! Mmmmmm. So we’ve come to the end of our feasting (and I’ve been carded and so we are escorted off the premises by 9:30). [Don’t worry mum, it’s a family establishment, people under 21 just can’t be there after 9. Although the waitress was nice and let us stay till we finished our food.]
We are in the car. Lost in downtown Minneapolis. And you know what? It doesn’t bother me a bit. Because it’s absolutely lovely being with these two people. (I love you Amy and Dawn!) So. We’re putting around for a bit. And then they ask me if Keenan and Michelle are on their honeymoon. And I give them the whole speel about how I don’t want to be the one who texts them on their honeymoon. And then Amy makes the comment that she should text them “are you having sex right now.” And then quickly follows with “I don’t have the guts to do that.” So, quicker before I can even think, thought processes are often belated with me, I whip out my cell phone and begin to construct a message, “Dawn and Amy want 2 know if ur having sex right now…or in other words r u guys on ur honeymoon?” And before I can stop myself, the send button has been pushed.
Yes. I am that person who texted you on your honeymoon. Bollocks.
Although, technically, it was all three of us. Dawn, Amy, and I. Well, mostly me. But at least their names were in the message.
The rest of the night went great. Amy and Dawn eventually found Miller Hall. I invited them up, showed them my HUGE room. My posters. My bedspread. Borrowed a couple of comics and the first season of Doctor Who to them. Sang them a song. Chatted a bit about life. Showed them the door. And sat back content. Played a little more on guitar.
At which point, Deanna (my fricken awesome roomate [we make sweet music together]) burst through the door after being at a concert with two other lovely ladies. We hung out, joked around, got some hot cocoa, which was more than less than unpleasant in our dorm with no air conditioning, but hey it is hot cocoa! Made them watch Doctor Who. Enjoyed Tennant’s Scottish accent in surround sound. Which by the way, only makes the werewolf more awesome and powerful. Got me to reminiscing about the Doctor and Rose. Again.
Hit the lights. Surfed the net. Woke up to a post on facebook about not having a recent dosage of Rozencrantz and Guildenstern. And now here it is.