Monday, April 21, 2014

just look

I'm sitting on the floor by my bed with a pile of tissues next to me. I keep going into fits of coughing and my head throbs. Colds are no fun. All I feel like doing is crawling into bed and ignoring the pile of studying besides me. Besides, what's the point of life, anyway?

There are some days where I don't see Jesus. I don't see Him working around me, I don't see Him working in me, heck, I can't even feel Him. But wait -- I am even looking? Am I looking, like the kind of "seeking with all my heart" looking?

The other day I was sitting in our backyard, barefooted and tired from the day. I closed my eyes and I heard a bird sing. Most of the time I just like hearing birds, but as I listened to the bird sing that day, my heart filled up and I would've flown up in the tree with that bird, if I could. I forgot I was tired and peace swept over me. But two minutes later my mind was occupied with a million other things. They were worthless thoughts, thoughts of how I'd messed up that day and worry-thoughts for the days to come.

I caught myself worrying and so I tried to bring myself back to listening to the bird. But somehow, this time the bird's song didn't seem so beautiful. And then I started thinking. I started looking and I saw the bird sitting on a limb above me. His beak opened and shut, then quivered as he sang. I couldn't ever make such a beautiful sound. Here was this bird, making a loud and yet captivating song -- and he was smaller than my hand. His lungs had to be smaller than my big thumb. And this creature came from an egg, an egg so fragile that one tiny movement could crush it.

Sometimes I just have to think. Sometimes I just have to look.

I've heard the story of Jesus hundreds of times. I know He died, was buried, and rose on the third day. But so often I forget to ponder. I don't take the time to look.

I so often forget the pain that Jesus went through. Not just the physical, human kind of pain -- but the emotional. While Jesus was up there, bleeding on the cross, His Father left Him. God couldn't even look or be with His own son.

It all makes my head spin. How many times in the Bible did God say He wouldn't leave us, forsake us, or give up on us? Countless times. God has never left my side, even when I don't see Him, even when I deliberately turn the other way. And yet God left His son for a moment so He could give us the chance to have life abundant. What a gift - a gift I sure didn't deserve.

Sometimes we just have to look.

Thursday, April 17, 2014

the past few months

Since I got back from Chad, a lot has changed. And I thought the change was only in Chad!

Besides three of my siblings going to public school (it's actually been really good for them), I decided to go to a vocational or technical school in January. I'm in the nursing program. The class is really helpful and I'm learning a lot, although I'm now sure that I don't want to be a nurse. I just don't get excited about it. Today we looked at pictures of punctured and amputated body parts and I was like, "Yeahhh. I don't wanna be a nurse." But everything I've learned is good, useful stuff that I can use later on in life -- even if I don't go into the medical field.

So those classes take up a bunch of my time. Anybody wanna do medical terminology with me?

Oh, and I got almost a foot of my hair cut off.

Okay, that's a terrible picture. (Look at my hair sticking up hahaha.)

Obviously I'm not a good selfie picture taker. But you can see my hair. See?

I have a car! Or a truck, as my mom says. My dad calls it a jeep, but he's a honda passport and I love him. Yes, he's a guy and he doesn't have a name. Anybody have any good car names? Or guitar ones? I thought about Elliot for my guitar, but I want to name a character in one of my books that.

Here's the guitar. I don't know much more than the E-minor chord, actually. And don't even ask what my friend Johnathan is doing . . .

I'm officially a barista now, too. I work at a local coffee shop & cafe. We try to keep super healthy food out there and I get to cook it sometimes. It's fun.

Someone likes to photobomb all my pictures. Thanks, Levi.

So now you know why I rarely post and why I'm so depressed all the time. Jk. But nursing is depressing sometimes. I mean, people are always getting hurt and stuff.

And now I shall end my super, non-professional, rambling post.

Monday, April 7, 2014


Sometimes I get scared to create things. I get scared that what I make won't be good or that someone won't like it. I get scared that I'll mess something up. I get scared that what I create won't be as beautiful as what someone else has created.

I get so tangled up in these fears that sometimes I don't create anything. I don't want to write that chapter, or draw that idea, or take that picture, or try to play that song. Besides, someone else will do something better. Some else will create something that people will like better than what I made.

And then it hits me in the face. Art is not about how others judge it or how much better it is than someone else's. Art is not about never messing up. We're going to trip and stumble.

Art is about doing what makes your soul free and your steps light. Art is about sighing with satisfaction when you finish something you love -- or trying again when you're not quite happy with it. Art is about making something that is original and maybe different. Maybe people won't like it at first or maybe they won't like it at all.

We artists need to do what we love. The rest will follow. And maybe, just maybe, by creating something with our own hands, we'll reflect the Artist and Creator of all.

ps: I miss my Chadian people ;)

Friday, April 4, 2014


My little sis is a joyful soul. I always want to take portraits that will reflect that person's heart, and though a lotta times those pictures can be serious, they aren't with my sis. She brings laughter into every room with her bubbly, confident self.

I like many things about Anna, but one of my favorite things about herself is that she's fearless. She's not afraid to try new things and always has a willing hand (or two) to help. She seems much older than her fourteen years to some people -- and that's probably because she helps. Some people don't get to see her fun, goofy side though, like I do.

So one night when the fam was away, Anna put on some of her cute clothes and we took pictures of her adorable self in the backyard.

"I never think of myself as an icon. What is in other people's minds is not in my mind. I just do my thing." AUDREY HEPBURN

ps: and that's her looking like an anthropologie model . . .