Archive from January, 2013
Jan 31, 2013 - My Story    3 Comments

Tuba-riffic!

My brother is so cool.

He’s fifteen. He’s 6’2″. He’s in that fun life stage somewhere in between playing with action figures and planning retirement.

He loves music. The other day he commented to my mom, “I just feel happiest when I’m playing music.”

He had the huge honor of being named first chair tuba in the all-county honor band. He participated in a blind tryout. (Think the high school version of The Voice.) His big concert was yesterday. After a ten hour practice I wondered if he could have pulled a lip muscle!

But the story gets cooler.

My dad had the brilliant idea of commemorating this achievement. I totally agree. I think if I took more time to stop, reflect, and celebrate achievements before rushing to the next thing, I’d appreciate everything a little bit more.

My dad wanted to get a miniature chair for my brother. He searched and searched. Doll house chairs. Barbie chairs. Miniatures of all kinds. Nothing looked right or was the right size. All were either too formal or too frilly. Until my dad stumbled across a wrestling action figure who accompanied a simple, gray folding chair. (Since to him the folding chair was the main event!) This chair was designed, no doubt, for conking people over the head. But Dad just saw a perfect fit and made this:

 First Chair Tuba

 

We learn two things from this: 1. Perhaps there is no life stage after playing with action figures! and 2. Kyle, you are great and we’re so proud of you! Sit proudly on your full sized chair and play your heart out!

 

Jan 30, 2013 - Humor    No Comments

Pens … for her?

I came across this little gem in my Internet wanderings today.

Bic pens specifically designed and marketed to women. Click here to see them!

Bic for Her Pens

Their slender, bedazzled sheen is supposed to appeal to the femininity hiding within us — so the marketers claim. It seem though that the public has only sarcastically bought into such a marketing ploy! The reviews are delightfully snarky.

For instance, the top rated review by Tracy Hamilton read: “Someone has answered my gentle prayers and FINALLY designed a pen that I can use all month long! I use it when I’m swimming, riding a horse, walking on the beach and doing yoga. It’s comfortable, leak-proof, non-slip and it makes me feel so feminine and pretty! Since I’ve begun using these pens, men have found me more attractive and approchable. It has given me soft skin and manageable hair… My drawings of kittens and ponies have improved, and now that I’m writing my last name hyphenated with Robert Pattinson’s last name, I really believe he may some day marry me! I’m positively giddy.”

I enjoyed the wit behind that review and also the gentle jab at advertisers who think making the package pink can significantly sway how I spend my money. I think that advertising and marketing and crucial and I’ve had to learn loads more and more about them recently. But good advertising is subtle. I think of it more like inception or persuasion than yelling and commanding. It made me laugh to see how “un-fooled” the public was! I hope you got a chuckle out of it too!

Now I’ll get back to writing with my light, slender,feminine, sparkly, writing utensil. Perhaps their not-so-subtle marketing scheme worked after all!

 

Jan 28, 2013 - Health    7 Comments

Take That, Self!

I did something today that I never thought would happen.

I’d thought about it. Dreamed about it. Planned for it. But not until today did I make it happen.

I ran a mile in under 10 minutes!

Here’s my proof!

watch time mile

I’ve never run in my life before six months ago. I walked half of the course as an elementary student. I enjoyed competition and sports, but running was not my forte. It is a very recent addition to my life. I wanted to challenge myself tonight so I measured out my course, chose a song peppy enough to get me started at the appropriate pace, and took off. It was rough. Don’t think anything different. I was a sweaty and wheezy mess at the end of that mile. I needed a significant cool down period. But I did it. It felt good — not during the run honestly — I’ve never hit that so-called runners high. It’s been described to me, but I have yet to understand it first hand.  But I can feed off the sense of accomplishment and experience a different kind of high! I run because I get to prove to myself that I am strong. That I can do it. That goals can be achieved.

A year ago, I never would have believed it! Take that, self!

Where to next, feet?

running shoes

Jan 25, 2013 - My Story    1 Comment

Crafting, Talking, Cupcakes and Mirror Notes

Sometimes I get peopled out.

I work around loads of people — coworkers and patients — all of whom need parts of my time and attention. Sometimes I joke that being an Occupational Therapist is like being a professional cheerleader. I have to encourage people to do things that are difficult and give lots of praise and encouragement.

So, after a day of cheerleading, I don’t always want to talk to anyone else.

But I live with four girls.

Great girls! Lovely girls! Fun and caring girls!

But my busy work life and busy home life sometimes clash. Sometimes we want the shower or the oven or the TV at the same time and have to work it out. Sometimes I wished I had a different living situation.

But sometimes — I LOVE IT!

Today is one of those days.

I came home to a house full of activity. One roommate was cooking cupcakes to share. One was crafting. One was asking me about my day.

And the best part of all — mirror notes!

If you didn’t know, you can write on mirrors with a dry erase marker and it erases cleanly. I love mirror notes. I love all notes. It is an easy way to leave not just information, but encouragement. Today, I came home to a mirror novel! My sweet roommate had written me oodles of encouragement — things she sees in me, praise for accomplishments, prayers for the future, and excitement in it all. It was beautiful and made me smile.

On days like today, I love my situation. I love the bustle and activity. The give and take. The ability to live with people who help shape my life.  I’m thankful for crafting, talking, cupcakes, and mirror notes!

House Friends

Jan 24, 2013 - Quotes    2 Comments

Magic Words

One of my all-time favorite movie quotes comes from Professor Dumbledore, the quizzical and kind, Headmaster in the Harry Potter series.

Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows

Dumbledore wisely says, “Words are, in my not-so-humble opinion, our most inexhaustible source of magic. Capable of both inflicting injury, and remedying it.”

I love that!

It might be because I love words. I love how 26 letters can be formed and reformed to tell daring tales and describe things only the imagination can picture. I love the quote because it is so well balanced — it’s symmetric; it wraps the tidbit of truth with a virtual bow in my mind! I love it because it’s inherently biblical.

Proverbs 12:18 reads, “There is one whose rash words are like swords thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.”

We all know the wounds that words can leave. We’ve been through the countless replaying of sword-thrusting sentences in our lives. And we’ve known the healing. The reassurance. The salve that words can provide.

So my question is: Are your words swords or salve?

 

 

 

 

 

Jan 21, 2013 - Exegesis, My Story    3 Comments

Justice and God

Ever since I attended Passion last year, my ears have pricked up when I hear the word “justice.” I heard about the atrocities in the world in real and all too near ways. Passion focused on the plight of 27 million men, women, and children in the world who are currently in slavery.  There is evil. There is oppression. There is injustice.

Slavery Still Exists

Lately, I’ve been reading through the Psalms. The book of varied emotions and burdened heart cries. Psalm 10:17-18 reads: “O LORD, you hear the desires of the afflicted; you will strengthen their heart; you will incline your ear to do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed, so that man who is of the earth may strike terror no more.”

I love, first of all, the confidence that the author of this Psalm gives in the Lord’s actions. Not “you may,” or “please do this,” or “hopefully.” The writer continually says, “You will…” with no qualms or hesitation. The author can make these unequivocal statements because he knows the Lord’s character. Yes, God is love. All love. The definition of love. And He is also just. The very definition of just!

Second, the phrase “incline your ear.” It’s beautiful. I picture a parent stooping down, leaning in, attentively listening to his child’s cries. Tenderly wiping tears and reassuring his little one that there is hope.

I also see the phrase “do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed.” These are a synecdoche (a part representing something larger), that is, God isn’t only interested in doing justice for the fatherless, but also the motherless, and the poor, and the disabled, and the slave. He is interested in justice for those who are disenfranchised.

Here’s what many miss though — God cares for people in all kinds of oppression. He cares for the 27 million in slavery in the world today, of course our minds jump there easily. But He also cares for the billions in spiritual bondage to sin! These people need a savior from a deeper and deadlier kind of slavery. But herein lies the beauty of the gospel – for God is both JUST and THE JUSTIFIER (Romans 3:26). God must punish sin, there is no excusing it. Therefore, He provided a way for the sin to be punished and the sinner to be saved.

The way is Jesus.

The ultimate end to slavery.

Jan 18, 2013 - Quotes    3 Comments

Bludgeoning Self Doubt

“Thank you for this lovely blunt object that I will forevermore use as a weapon against self doubt.”
Whoa.

That’s beautiful.

I have a bad habit of always doing two things at once. I typically watch a movie, and make earrings or hair flair. I do laundry while cooking dinner. I am addicted to accomplishment.

But that statement made me look up from my hot glue.

I never picture famous and accomplished people battling self doubt like the common-folk. I never imagine a beautiful, valuable statue being a weapon. But they do and it is!

If you missed the Golden Globes, here’s the best part!

 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WUlldx3X60c&w=500&h=285

How do you bludgeon self doubt?

Jan 17, 2013 - Occupational Therapy    1 Comment

Everyone Matters

I love everything about this story.

I love that a nine year old understands what millions of adults don’t — that everyone matters. All mankind is created in the Image of God according to Genesis 1:26-28. That means that we treat everyone well — recognizing their inherent value. No matter what each individual can offer in return, he is deserving of our best.

Connor Long understands. Do you?

Jan 15, 2013 - My Story    3 Comments

My Resolutions?

So after all my high brow talk about making resolutions… some of you have asked what MY resolutions are for 2013!

I’m glad you asked! (And thanks for reading 🙂

In 2013 I am resolved to:

1. Write at least 100 blog posts.

I truly feel healthiest when writing. That’s the point of this blog. I love getting feedback, but even more than that I love feeling like I’m learning all that I can in life. When I was in seminary I wrote a monthly update and one supporter commented, “I think you just get so much more out of life because you have to put it on paper.” Perhaps I Think On Paper was born that day.

2. I will memorize two chapters of scripture.

At the Passion Conference last week John Piper gave a simple, but poignant exhortation during the leader community group. “Memorize scripture. Not just various verses, but whole sections. Drench your life with the Word of God.” I am calling it Operation Saturation! I want to swim around in the scriptures. To soak it in. I want to spend time in the Bible memorizing verses so that I’ll never be without them. Memorizing scriptures allows them to be my constant companions.

(As a note, I haven’t chosen what sections to memorize. Any suggestions?)

3. I will run a 5K in thirty minutes or less.

I completed my first 5K in November in 34:17. I was so excited! Up to that point I had never even ran 3.1 miles in my training program. So whatever my time was it was automatically my record! That was comforting going into the race! I’d love to keep up the hard work and see a few minutes come off my time.

4. And finally, I resolve to know God better, to experience another year of grace, to be thankful for my many blessings.

I don’t want to think of a “golden age” in my Christian walk. As in, “I was really close to God in college.” I want every year to be the pinnacle of my relationship with the Lord. That is my continual resolution –for which I will always strive — and never quite arrive. Sometimes, even when you can’t obtain the final goal, it’s worth moving forward, little by little toward something valuable and worth fighting for.

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