Hello Food!

I never knew how much I could miss certain types of food.  I can already tell you that one of the hardest things about going home will be deciding what food to eat first because I want all of it!  I want Panera’s cinnamon crunch bagel with honey walnut cream cheese.  I want pad thai.  I want Kashi cereal and Special K with Red Berries.  I want Olive Garden’s Chicken Scampi minus the chicken.  I want White Chocolate Molten Cake from Chili’s.  I want a blueberry bagel with lite strawberry cream cheese.  I want cheesecake from the Cheesecake Factory.  I want the strawberry poppyseed salad from Panera.  I want granola bars.  I want better than sex cake.  I want access to all sorts of fruit and being able to go to the grocery store whenever.  And to add to it all, I want to make my own food whenever I want and to eat whenever I want.  Yet, in the meantime, I appreciate the little luxuries that come along every once in a while.  For example, you have no idea how excited Sam and I got in the grocery store when we saw BABY SPINACH!  Amazing!  Normal, baby spinach to make a yummy salad.  I am pumped.  To add to the excitement, they even had Tahini, which makes fabulous hummus and falafel, which I’ll tell you more about in another post.

So, what’s something you’ve eaten this week that was absolutely fabulous?  And what should I eat first when I get back?


“If your career path doesn’t seems to match your heart’s longing, it may be you have a skill that doesn’t match your passion.  You were good at something, so it seemed obvious that is what you should do.” p.60

Throughout my life, I assumed that whatever I performed well equated to something that I should do.  Furthermore, if I did not do something well then I needed to spend extra time on that in order to get better.  For example, I can write e-mails no problem.  I can do math no problem.  But, do they give me energy? Do they engage my passions? Am I fueled and fulfilled by these activities? Usually, not.  I’m in the process of redefining my definition of “what I should do.”

“–what are you to embrace? This is a question of passion and compassion.” p. 27

“When you don’t know what’s really important, you treat everything the same.” p. 78

What are my non-negotiables? Am I making decisions based on these?

“If you want to reinvent yourself, you have to know who are you and who you long to be and not violate that on the journey.” p. 82

“When you live a life of love, you are not bound to who are you but to who you will become.” 85

I am on a journey moving away from who I used to be and straining toward who I want to become.

“If you don’t lock into the life God has called you to live, you will find yourself pulled and torn by everyone else’s desire and expectation for your life.” 137

“If you haven’t defined who you are at the core, you will find yourself making choices that lead you down a path you would never have chosen if you could have thought more clearly.” p. 145

The Past

“Some spend their lives painting images that only remember the past.” p. 4

The past…entraps, makes you feel stuck, holds you back.  Through examining our past, we can move forward with greater clarity and understanding of ourselves.  Yet, our focus must be on Jesus the author and perfector of our faith for He will transform us as we continue to abide in Him and renew our minds.

“What darkness has consumed you and stolen from you, robbed from you, sucked out of your soul the dream God created you to flesh out?” p. 31

What has distracted you? What has pulled you off the path?  The dream still exists whether or not we have lost focus.  We can return and reclaim that dream.  Not all is lost.

“You are being manipulated by the circumstances of your life rather than being moved by a calling with purpose and mission.” p. 47

Seasons come and go throughout our life.  We choose our attitude.  We choose our reactions.

“What we should learn from wisdom we insist on learning through the pain that comes from being unteachable.” p. 51

I strive to be teachable.  To listen well and accept advice, criticism, and observation about myself and my life.  As others recognize things, I need to examine my heart and recognize the areas in need of transformation without becoming defensive.  Easier said than done!

“Are you settling for a life that essentially seeks the measure of everyone else’s value of who you are? Are you a prisoner to the opinion of others, or are you willing to allow God to create the life of your dreams?” p.113

I am easily swayed by popular opinion and by my perception of people’s opinions.  My perception sways my thinking.  I may perceive something far different than reality.  Thus, I must instead turn to God to allow Him to inform my perception and help me create a masterpiece out of my life.

ht: Wide Awake by Erwin McManus

Little Bit of Sadness

David. (to Elijah) This morning was the first morning I can remember, that I didn’t open my eyes and feel that sadness…I thought the person who wrote that note had an answer for me.

Elijah. (to David) That little bit of sadness in the mornings you spoke of? I think I know what that is. Perhaps you’re not doing what you’re supposed to be doing.

-M. Night Shyamalan’s film Unbreakable

Wide Awake by Erwin McManus

A Smattering

“It’s not that you’re doubting that God can do something. You believe in your heart that God can do something.  You just don’t want to accept his timing.  We accept his strength. We don’t want to accept his calendar.” –Pete Wilson

“I tend to live the way that I drive. I’m going to get from point A to point B in the shortest amount of time and by the easiest route possible, but I’ve come to realize that getting where God wants me to go isn’t nearly as important as becoming who God wants me to become in the process and God seems far less concerned with where I’m going than with who I’m becoming.” –Mark Batterson

What do you need to trust God’s timing with today?

Where are you impatient in God’s timing?

Even now, I find myself straining toward the future.  Toward the next great adventure.  Toward wherever I go next.  Yet, the call is to live in the present.  To be fully present. Right here. Today.  Not living tomorrow. Not looking back, but embracing the now.  Fixing my eyes ahead and putting my hand to the plow.  The road will be tough but He will be right beside me.

“You can’t have it both ways.  You can’t put your hands to the plow and then take a break from the plow and do something else.  If you follow me, you stay on that plow.  There’s no looking back.” –Andy O’Rourke “The Road of Discipleship” Luke 9:57-62.

Songs for Saturday

Every Other Memory by Trick Pony

Heaven Forbid by The Fray

Broken by Seether

Good-bye My Lover by James Blunt

Distant Shore by Dierks Bentley

That’s When I’ll Believe You’re Gone by Craig Morgan


Life is not a color-within-the-lines project;

life is a work of art.

You have to keep mixing the colors,

creating new blends,

and seeing things in fresh ways.

You must be willing

to get paint

all over you.

Life is about growth. Growth

demands change. Change

requires humility.

ht: Wide Awake

Trombone Player Wanted, Pt. 2

Step 2: Do you know what your strengths are?

  • Strengths have a yearning quality to them
  • Which activities do you look forward to?
  • Strengths are those which you are naturally inquisitive about
  • Which activities allow you to focus, concentrate and time flies?
  • Strengths have a restorative quality
  • Which activities leave you uplifted, sustained, make you want to do it again, make you feel strong?

Looking back on the last week do you see any telltale signs of a strength?

For me, Hope House (the orphanage in Harrismith) and LaunchPad (after-school discipleship class) definitely fit the characteristics above.  They sustain me, they make me want to go back, time flies, I want to continue to learn more to develop my skills, and I look forward to them.

ht: Marcus Buckingham

Trombone Player Wanted!

Session 1: So What’s Stopping You?

Myth: As you grow you change

Truth: As you grow you become more and more of who you are

Myth: You will grow the most and learn the most where you are the worst

Truth: You will grow the most in areas of strength

Myth: What the team needs is to put aside your strengths

Truth: The team needs you to strengthen your strengths–the team is well-rounded because the members are not, there is not an i in team, but there is an i in win

What are you focusing on? Strengths or weaknesses?

ht: Marcus Buckingham