Saturday, September 29, 2007

A Valuable Piece of Advice...

For all of my millions of readers: to those few thousand of you thinking of taking the LSAT at the University of Denver, a word of advice:

  1. Get there early - when you read "8:30 a.m." think "7:30 a.m." - not because they start on time (because they don't - praise God or I would have wasted $129), but because DU has really limited visitor parking.
  2. When reading the instructions and you see the word "snack" - think Double Cheeseburger with fries, a coke, and maybe some apple pie because it's longer than "snack" would imply.
  3. Don't bother with a sharpener - they don't do what their name implies - just take a half dozen pencils - one for each section of the test.
  4. Skip the questions that take too long (some very good advice I received on Tuesday) - even if it means skipping a whole passage and 7 questions because instead of English it seems like the passage is in Greek or Latin or some equally dead language.
  5. At the 5 minute warning, stop panicking and just do what you can - actually it's kind of comical how little you can get done in 35 minutes when it's 9:30 a.m. and your brain doesn't turn on until 3 p.m.
  6. No ball point pen means no ball point pen - take pencils, people and listen to the instructions!!!! (seriously, how many times did she say no pens and someone was writing with one???)
  7. Don't forget your water bottle.
  8. When crossing the DU campus don't look the Rushers in the eye and enjoy the chiming bell in the clock tower - the latter is reason enough to go to a campus like DU on the hour :)
  9. Praise God when you don't get a parking ticket because you didn't listen to #1 and you didn't have enough change.
  10. Remember - the outcome of this test does not affect your life's happiness - God's going to use you where you're at - fact - no matter how smart the LSAC thinks you are.

Friday, September 28, 2007

Strengthen Your Brothers

I read this yesterday morning and saw it with new eyes:

"Simon, Simon, behold, Satan has demanded permission to sift you like wheat; but I have prayed for you, that your faith may not fail; and you, when once you have turned again, strengthen your brothers." ~Luke 22:31-32

"when once you have turned again, strengthen your brothers."

I had always seen that Jesus had prayed for Peter's faith not to fail, but then he also encouraged Peter to strengthen his brothers - because he would know better what he believed.

Last night at Bible Study we were in 1 Peter, and someone mentioned the fact that Peter had failed so much and it was ironical that he was now encouraging the readers of his letter to stay strong. The weight of the above quote hit me once again - that's exactly why he was writing the letter - he knew the importance of standing strong - he knew the value of the salvation that comes through Jesus' sacrifice - he knew the value of grace.

We are far from useless in God's hands - despite our failures - when we allow Him to pick us up and brush us off, God will use us to strengthen His people.

Trust - Wait - Worship

"Loving God, according to the Bible, means we are to trust him, wait on his timing, and worship him. We, too, will be tested [as Jesus was - Matthew 4:1-11], in each of these areas of our vocation to love God."
~Scot McKnight, The Jesus Creed p. 252

In what we find to do - in relationships we find ourselves blessed to be in - in loving God with all we are - in loving others - can we - can I trust God? wait on His timing? worship Him?

Trust even when I cannot see or understand-
Wait even when I think my way is best-
Worship even when my heart is heavy and my mind wants to be elsewhere-

"When we struggle in faith, in waiting on God, and in centering on God in our worship, we need to remind ourselves that Jesus has done each of these for us. Our weak trust, our failure to wait on God, and our blurred worship are all swallowed up in his perfect trust, patience, and worship" (p. 254-emphasis mine).

Thursday, September 27, 2007


Here is evidence of what happens to me when I go to bed in a good mood, have a glorious morning as I did this morning (woke up early - had time to eat, go on a walk, read a chapter in my book, look at what I'm teaching in Bible Study tonight), and then have a chance to chat with a good friend. This is a selection from a conversation I had over the course of the entire day with my friend from Leadville (who by the way is very cool and gave me permission to do this). I removed the first half - wherever it says "later" it really is later - I was working

me: has it snowed up there yet?
are you burried under a couple of feet of it yet?
i forgot salt again
I think I'm in an odd mood
Ann: No snow here yet
me: bummer
Ann: Yeah, I know
I half am bummed and half not.
Early snow melts
me: I was being sarcastic
Ann: I'm afraid the first snow will stick till spring.
me: I'm being productive today - that usually puts me in an odd mood
Ann: Nice
Productive is great!
me: that's what I've heard
I dunno.....
Ooh, I ordered North by Northwest through Netflix and it should come today
so excited!
I haven't seen that movie in years
me: I think these rice tortilla chips just get crunchier the longer they sit in a bag
Ann: lol
You are being very random.
me: only because you're not here seeing my incredibly crunchy chips
I think I lost a tooth
me: is the plural of monkey really monkeys??????????
Ann: yes it is
me: weird
who came up with this language??
Ann: God?
me: God did not make the plural of Monkey Monkeys
the Tower of Babel was a long time ago
the language has evolved and gone haywire
Ann: yeah
I might be able to look that up

Enough said....

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


Nothing beats this time of year! The sun is shining with all its might and the breeze is cool. The leaves are turning and falling. The air is crisp. There are days like today and evenings like last night - the former is good for walks and the latter for a nice fire, a long hug, or a mug the size of your face full of something warm and yummy.
I am vastly contented and always happy to enjoy those quietly perfect moments that don't seem to last long enough :)

You Can't Take it With You

This weekend was amazing. Why? you ask. The answer is more complex than simply "I celebrated my 26th birthday" for I did not merely celebrate my birthday, I celebrated my friends and the gifts God has given me and continues to give me.

Friday I saw a friend from out of town. Saturday I went to see a play with 7 friends. And on Sunday I had dinner with my best friend, her husband, and my boyfriend.

The play we saw was You Can't Take it With You, a play in three acts by George S. Kaufman and Moss Hart. It is an amazingly funny and crazy story about a family in New York City in the 30's. The main drive of the story is that no matter how much you toil upon this earth you can't take a dime with you when you leave it, so why grasp at those fleeting treasures?

So I would like to thank my real treasures - everyone who made my 26th birthday so memorable. Dinner and the theatre, a late night talk, an evening out and an evening in - smiles, laughter, and simply being there - all this rolls into one incredible weekend that I will not soon forget.

I am blessed. Thank you.

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The time! the time! Who's got the time?

Computer: 1:55
Work Phone: 1:46
Over the door: 1:49
Over the books: 1:50
Cell phone: 1:48
Blog: 1:48

And the answer is... 1:48's different now!

Monday, September 10, 2007

Living for...

So often in our culture we find we are "living for the weekend." I do so try to not make this true in my life, but one thing I have learned this week is that the weekends help me live the rest of the week. It's not that I'm not at work or that I get to sleep-in - because sometimes I can't do that - but it's the opportunity to slow down a bit and enjoy the small "perfect" moments that keep me running.

Then they remind me that there are moments throughout the week that fill me up too.

This morning I was able to sit and write a letter while listening to quiet music and enjoying the very English looking morning. Wednesday nights I hang out with students. Thursdays are traditionally Bible Study and a chance to learn and fellowship with my peers. And always there are notes and calls from friends, moments spent with P., and those times I can sit still and simply be that remind me that people are important, the Lord is with me, and life is worth living.

So no matter what anyone says about weekends, I think it's important to remember that each day has joys and sorrows of its own. You just have to live for those "perfect" moments - like strolling around a lake, laughing with a student over dinner, a friend over a movie, or wandering aimlessly but blissfully through the zoo.

"All joy reminds. It is never a possession,
always a desire for something longer ago or further away
or still 'about to be.'"
~C. S. Lewis, Surprised by Joy

Sunday, September 9, 2007

Madeleine L'Engle

from Walking on Water: Reflections on Faith and Art by M. L'Engle (1918-2007)

"Faith is for that which lies on the other side of reason. Faith is what makes life bearable, with all its tragedies and ambiguities and sudden, startling joys. Surely it wasn't reasonable of the Lord of the Universe to come and walk this earth with us and love us enough to die for us and then show us everlasting life?" p. 22

"Often we forget that he has a special gift for each one of us, because we tend to weigh and measure such gifts with the coin of the world's market place. The widow's mite was worth more than all the rich men's gold because it represented the focus of her life. Her poverty was rich because all she had belonged to the living Lord." p. 31

"And then there is time in which to be, simply to be, that time in which God quietly tells us who we are and who he wants us to be. It is then that God can take our emptiness and fill it up with what he wants, and drain away the business with which we inevitably get involved in the dailiness of human living." p. 170