Thursday, September 30, 2010

Day 07: Photo That Makes You Happy (Part 2)

It rained today.

Not only is the rain much needed here, but it was very unexpected, so it was almost an 'event' for many people.

For myself, it was even more so, because I've been missing rainy days lately, feeling a bit homesick.

So, what did I do?

I kicked off my flip-flops, rolled up my jeans' legs, and showed the group-home kids how to play in the rain!

They loved it! We danced in puddles and splashed at one another until we were all completely drenched and exhausted.

It was a blessing to watch as the kids forgot about their 'gangster' facades and just play like joyful children.

And then we were blessed with a beautiful double rainbow. You can't really see the outer rainbow in this cell phone pic, but it was miraculous. We were all awed.

I'm grateful I was able to snap this pic as a reminder of how the simple things in life are often the greatest.

Day 07: A Photo That Makes You Happy

This pic makes me happy.

It was a lovely night.

Good view.

Good company.

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

shallow depths

"You want depth, you want time. You want one on one or a few. You aren't satisfied with 2hr socials dominated by strong personalities. You need time to explain yourself and understand another person. Its complex, it doesn't come out in small talk and chit chat. It's gotta be chewed on for a while."
Yes! Exactly! This is so me! Thank you!
Now . . . where does this exist?

Day 06: Whatever Tickles Your Fancy

In this world, but not of it.
I was reminded of this in the Word recently.

Days come where I am tired, days that I feel like a doormat. In this world love as a verb is considered subservient, lowly, degrading. Love is something the world says should be conditional. Otherwise, it is a weakness. And in my humanness, I understand why.

Daily wishing well those who lash out towards me abusively, and responding to their curses and threats with encouragement and blessings, it becomes overwhelming after time. The flesh in me, the influences of the world within me, struggle with this. Yearning for some sort of dignity. But dignity is of this world.
And I am not.
". . . When we are cursed, we bless; when we are persecuted, we endure it; when we are slandered, we answer kindly . . . " 1 Corinthians 4:12-13

" . . . Instead, the greatest among you should be like the youngest, and the one who rules like the one who serves. For who is greater, the one who is at the table or the one who serves? Is it not the one who is at the table? But I am among you as one who serves." Luke 22:26-27
God is good. He loves servants. He loves me. My service to others in His love is worship. And I am blessed to worship Him in this way. Truly.

Thank You, Christ, for allowing me to share Your light with others. Help me to be in this world, but not of it.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Day 05: Favorite Quote

Mother Teresa had incredible passion in sharing God's love with those starving to be known and cared for. So many of her quotes can be applied to daily life as a Christian and as a childcare counselor. Its hard to pick just one, but I think the first listed below might be my favorite!
"Words which do not give the light of Christ increase the darkness."
"Being unwanted, unloved, uncared for, forgotten by everybody, I think that is a much greater hunger, a much greater poverty than the person who has nothing to eat."

"Each one of them is Jesus in disguise.

"Even the rich are hungry for love, for being cared for, for being wanted, for having someone to call their own.

"If you can't feed a hundred people, then feed just one."

"If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other."

"Let us not be satisfied with just giving money. Money is not enough, money can be got, but they need your hearts to love them. So, spread your love everywhere you go."

"Let us touch the dying, the poor, the lonely and the unwanted according to the graces we have received and let us not be ashamed or slow to do the humble work."

"Loneliness and the feeling of being unwanted is the most terrible poverty. " 

"Many people mistake our work for our vocation. Our vocation is the love of Jesus." 

"One of the greatest diseases is to be nobody to anybody. " 

"There is always the danger that we may just do the work for the sake of the work. This is where the respect and the love and the devotion come in - that we do it to God, to Christ, and that's why we try to do it as beautifully as possible." 

-Mother Teresa 


1. I've worked 59 hours with no day off until . . . well, I guess my day off started an hour and thirty-eight minutes ago.

2. Because of my ridiculous schedule this week, I was super tired today and fell asleep twice. So now it's almost two in the morning and no sign of zzz's.

3. My new job title is "Intensive Treatment Counselor." Pretty much the exact same job, just with fewer things to focus on and a little more money ;o)

4. I miss rain. Rain is nice.

5. Today Kimberly and I spent the evening together. It was great. And now I only need to wait another week to do it again.

6. I am continually in awe at the intricacies of God's design. Seriously. I learn just enough each day to be amazed all over again. Coincidence doesn't exist, people.

7. I really am here. Now. Its not a dream anymore. I have to keep reminding myself that.

8. Today was HOT. No joke.

9. One of my favorite things in SoCal? Avocados. Delicious!

10. I have to make myself do something besides lounge all day until our gathering at Round Table tomorrow evening. Its so tempting to just do nothing. I've turned into a hermit. I'm either at home or at work, and that's about it. Not very healthy. So . . . what to do? What to do? Hm . . .

Day 04: Favorite Book

The Chronicles of Narnia are some of my favorite books.
I love them and their way of whisking the reader off to another world that is so fantastical, yet oddly familiar. When I first read where the lion reveals himself as the Lamb, I cried. A lot.

The Wicked series is another favorite. Of course, it lacks the spiritual components of The Chronicles, but it too invites the reader into a wonderland where not all problems are so unfamiliar. A Lion Among Men is my favorite in this series.

He Chose the Nails is a great book about the crucifixion of Christ. Its one of those books I find myself referring back to from time to time, ultimately learning something new with each visit. I originally came across it when writing a song about Jesus' victory over death and sin, and God really spoke to me through that book, and used it to guide me through His Word.

Of course, the bible would be on the list as well. I have a complicated relationship with the bible. Sometimes I lack commitment and don't put forth enough effort in keeping close touch, but like all good friends, I always find myself accepted back mercifully. I've found over the last couple months that reading God's word out-loud is a powerful thing. We've been reading the bible with one another in our men's bible study on Monday nights, and I'll typically read about four chapters each work night to my group-home kids before bedtime. The results are outstanding, as I feel myself more engaged in the Word when it is spoken, as I believe its Creator meant it to be.

I must admit, I have a difficult time finishing books, even ones I enjoy. I tend to get about 3/4's of the way through something, then suddenly lose steam. It's a terrible habit. So, its unlikely I'll ever accumulate a very long list of favorites ;o)

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Day 03: Favorite TV Program

Thundercats, Ho!

The best! This is my favorite program of all time! Much like my favorite movie, this show holds many childhood, and not-so-childhood, memories for me.

A couple years ago I did an entire character education group for emotionally disturbed youth using the Thundercats. They loved it!


Day 02: Favorite Movie

Hocus Pocus!

My all time favorite movie!

I have fond childhood memories of watching this at the drive-in movie theater with my mom, and some not-so-childhood memories of watching it over and over again with Kimmy and -V-.

So funny, with just a touch of spookiness, makes this movie super-cool!

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Copycat Writing Prompts! (Day 01: Favorite Song)

Some days I have enough to write about for three whole posts, while other days I struggle to think of anything to write about at all. Inspiration will elude me, but the desire to write remains strong. Well, today I saw 30 days worth of prompts on my friend's blog, so I thought I'd copycat her! At least this way, I won't be wasting time searching for prompts all over the web because I've already pasted them over in the sidebar of this blog. So, YAY for efficiency and inspiration! And for smart blogging buddies ;o)

Day 01: Favorite Song

Well, oddly enough, I really don't have a favorite song. I know, I know, my blog is titled Nathan Has a Song. But I do more writing than listening. I'm tempted to list one of my own songs as a favorite. Not because I'm conceded, but simply because of the sentimental value it has to me, involving the inspiration behind writing it, and the process of 'bringing it to life.' But that might kinda be cheating . . .

So I guess I'm gonna have to cop out on this one, and leave it at, "Don't have one."

Friday, September 24, 2010

Faith Over Fear

"So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." - Isaiah 41:10

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Break and Shape

"...being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus." - Philippians 1:6

When Joseph was seventeen, he had a dream prophesying that he would someday rule over his brothers. This peek into his destiny filled him with self-confidence; he was a young man who was riding high. But the fact is, he wasn't ready to rule over his brothers yet. He needed to go through some character-shaping times. And indeed, he did just that, spending thirteen years facing setbacks, challenges, and even prison. Although Joseph was forgotten by man during those times, he was never forgotten by God. Through adversity, God molded his character so that when Pharaoh appointed him the Prime Minister of Egypt, he was ready to fulfill his God-chosen destiny.

Think about Joseph when you go through tough times in your own life. Sometimes God breaks us and allows us to hit rock bottom so that He can shape us into the person that He is calling us to be. Maybe the adversity is God's way to toughen you, teach you, and prepare you for the great plans He has for you.

*Borrowed from HERE.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


Some people just have a gift. An uncanny gift.

If you read a couple posts down, you'd see I haven't had the best day. You know, one of those days where you just feel . . . crummy and sad and boo hoo. Well, it seems like the last three or so times I've had really bad days like that, someone in particular sends me the nicest emails, completely unexpected. This person is someone I knew from my home church in Farmland, IN. I can probably count on one hand how many times we actually spoke in person before I moved to CA, but over the past few months this person's words of Christ's love has been a super blessing to me! Today's surprise email from him was a praise report of amazing things God is doing through his life for others, and it closed with this little encourager here:
"I miss seeing you, man!  And I miss hearing you sing at church!  But I know you're impacting people, and you're making a difference to somebody, whether you hear about your impact or not."
Just the timing of the email and the specific things this young man said in comparison to some seeds the enemy has been sowing in my brain (and the fact that this kind of 'coincidence' is a repeat thing for this guy) illustrates to me a very special gift he's been given. I am uplifted, and even more so, just marveling at the wonders of our Creator who designed us so intricately to function symbiotically. He knows us so intimately, and loves us so dearly to have made things so.

New Song in the Works . . .

Fire Like Rain: All I Need

Holy and divine
You've known no sin but mine
Yet You were crucified
To set me free

'Though I take back on my chains
You break them 'way each day
Such mercy, oh what grace
You're all I need

Pour out Your fire like rain
Crash down in waves of blaze
Flood my heart in Holy flames
Burn me up, wash me away
You, You are all I need
You, You are all I need, Jesus
You, You are all I need

Savior, Jesus Christ
Breather of all life
Author of whats right
You set me free

Glory to Your name
Worthy of all praise
Forge me in Your flame
You're all I need

Pour out Your fire like rain
Crash down in waves of blaze
Flood my heart in Holy flames
Burn me up, wash me away
You, You are all I need
You, You are all I need, Jesus
You, You are all I need

more than enough

It's never enough. No matter what I do. No matter how hard I try. It's never enough.
I am never enough.

There's always more to be. Someone else to be. Something bigger to do. More to share. More to give.
I am never enough.

Realistically, who is? No one. But that logic doesn't seem to penetrate my heart. People all around seem complete somehow. Who they are. What they do. Beautiful in their imperfections. Yet I feel so displeased in all I am. And am not.
I am never enough.


The wonderful thing is, I don't have to be. Christ is more than enough. And His Spirit dwells within me, revealing Himself to others through me. I'm so undeserving of the honor to serve a Lord so merciful and all-powerful. I often feel useless, like I have no value or purpose. Its haunting. I only seem to escape for occasional bouts of time. Otherwise, it just lingers. And today it hangs over me like a black cloud. Yet how ungrateful? To be used by the Breather of Life even in the humblest of ways is an unspeakable gift. So precious!

God alone is more than enough. I am not. I will never be. And I should not want to be. Dependency on the Lord is a beautiful thing. I've gotta embrace that. I've gotta shift, then cement, my focus from working to grow myself and my own value, to growing my relationship with Christ instead. He is using me; I've gotta remain aware and appreciative. But most of all, I've gotta strive to worship Him with all I am, so His glory can be made known.

Because He is more than enough.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Today's Writing Prompt: Forget

Complete this thought: "I usually forget...." 

This question makes me laugh!

If there really was only one thing!

Sunday, September 19, 2010


  • I am so happy that Kimmy bought some pomegranates! Mmm!
  • The past two weeks at work have been crazy.
  • Today I went to the ER to transport a psychotic kid to campus, but he refused to leave with me. He beat me with a phone, punched me and kicked me, then during a restraint he dug a hole in the palm of my hand with his fingernail. I'm feeling kinda beat up.
  • I'm super pumped for church tomorrow!
  • Back into the swing of songwriting! I think . . .
  • Considering doing a video blog soon, just 'cuz I wanna.
  • Yep, gonna say it again. I love fall.
  • Yep, gonna say this again, too. I miss corn.
  • Been feeling off-kilter, but I'm pretty sure I still have a good grip on sanity. Mostly.
  • Bible reading with the kids at work is going well. Now we pray at night, too!
  • I'm so over AWOL'ers. Seriously, get a new act!
  • Still loving our men's bible study on Mondays!
  • I'm exhausted.
  • I don't like my new blog look. I liked the heart/rib-cage thingy a lot, but I just needed something brighter. This just isn't doing it for me though.
  • I miss my mommy. What?!

Another Great Pic Message!

I can remember doing this same thing; walking through the corn towering over me two and three times my height.

Like stepping into a wonderland.

The rustling.
And that smell.

Ah, memories ;o)

(BTW, I really miss Mr. Isaiah!)

Friday, September 17, 2010


“If at first an idea does not sound absurd, then there is no hope for it.”

- Albert Einstein 

Thanks Nate!

One thing I'm missing from IN right now is watching the corn turn. I never really had aspirations of farming, but as a farmer's son I grew up watching the crops grow tall over summer months and dry out to a golden hue in fall. It was always a special thing to witness; something about it, paired with a slight chill in the air, just feels homey to me. I always get excited at the first signs of fall, and am missing that experience greatly. Today, I was super blessed by my friend Nate C., who sent me this beautiful pic of the corn near his home.

Sigh. I love it!

Thursday, September 16, 2010


The traffic on 78 is backed up.

Not much movement.

I was supposed to clock-in three minutes ago.

So close to my destination, yet so far away.



Right now, my thoughts are a tangled mess.

Unconnected, yet completely intertwined.

Unraveling one knot seems to create a dozen more.

I can't find a beginning or an end.

Just . . . tangles.

Today's Writing Prompt: Weak

In what way are you weak? 

My greatest weakness is my insecurity.

Monday, September 13, 2010

gears are turning . . .

" rain down Your fire / a crashing wave of flame / blazes flooding higher / I burn for You / I'm washed away "

now what!?!? lol

Today's Writing Prompt: Monday

Rename Monday.
My days off right now are Mondays and Tuesdays.
So Monday has a more positive connotation to me than it does to many other people ;o)

Today's Writing Prompt: Strong

In what way are you strong? 

My heart.
I love a lot.

I seem to be especially drawn to people who are difficult to love.

Sunday, September 12, 2010


The sounds are unmistakable. The angst of a mentally-ill teen. Then irritation of a weary childcare worker. Scuffling of clumsy feet on the pavement. I look out the window just in time to see two residents from the neighboring group-home step across the boundary from our campus into the community. "Fuck you, Bob!" they shout at the staff who is trailing behind them. "No! You know what!?" Bob responds, stopping in his tracks and throwing his hands in the air as though defeated, "Fuck you! That's what! Its five minutes 'til my shift is over, and I'm done with your shit for today!" Bob stomps backs to the group-home to clock-out, dragging his feet and looking downward like a child who has been sent to their room.Yes, his response was completely inappropriate, but don't villain-ize him yet; consider first that he has been on quite a bumpy ride for the last eight hours.

I step into action. It's dangerous for these guys to be out in the community; they are a threat to others and themselves. I follow from a distance, as they already have a half-block head start on me before I even hit the door.They look back at me frequently, paranoia and adrenaline obscuring their vision. I attempt to appear aloof, but as they return to looking forward I walk as fast as my flip-flops allow, closing the gap between us. I'm close enough now to hear bits of their chatter; they're toying with the idea of jumping me. I instantly regret not leaving my wallet in the office and forgetting to slip into my sneakers before partaking in this adventure. I assess the risk: one of them is nearly my size, just slightly smaller in build. The other one is huge, maybe 6'3'' or 4'' and quite bulky. But both are lower functioning and clumsy. I determine risk to be moderate. I approach with a confidence that is not mine.

I flash a smile that, ironically, feels more genuine than most how-do-you-do's. "Great day for a walk, huh? You know, that place was making me crazy! Thanks for taking a walk with me! I really needed to get out of there!" They look at each other in confusion, as if I'm speaking to them in an unknown language. "We're not going back!" one finally breaks the silence, "because all we're gonna hear is, 'AWOL! You went AWOL!' and I'm tired of hearing that shit!"

I'm speaking before I know what I'm saying, "Nah. You guys are great! See, you needed to get some space, you started to go AWOL, but decided to take a walk with me instead. Good choice! I'll call your staff right now and let them know so they won't continue thinking you're AWOL, k?" They nod, still somewhat dazed. I dial their group-home's number on my cell, and with the same enthusiasm I shared with them, I relay the same message to their staff.

"Now, lets find a place to chill for a few. Its hot!" I say casually as I pass them by and walk down the sidewalk as though I'd be leading them out for a little stroll the whole time.They're following me. The tension is decreasing, their fists unclench (thank God), and their pace is becoming more recreational. We walk quietly for a few minutes, then rest on a curb under a shade tree. The floodgates open. The teens are spewing their frustrations as I accurately predict them one by one mentally before spoken; I've shared these types of conversations with these guys before and their motivations to runway never change. But I nod encouragingly, acting as though I'm hearing this all for the first time. Soon we're on our feet again. We talk about our favorite animals, what foods we love our mothers to cook for us, and how nice it'll be to drink a big glass of iced water when we get back to campus. In the few scattered moments of silence, I acknowledge the Spirit guiding me, and thank God for His ever-presence. Before we know it, we've traveled the whole block and find ourselves back on campus. Mission: success!

I think of the story of Jonah. Then I'm reminded of the story of Nathan.

So often, I'm that teen under the impression I'm running away, when in reality, I'm taking a stroll in God's presence. He's right there alongside me, watching after my safety and well-being . When I finally turn to Him, He listens to my prayers despite already knowing my every thought and feeling. And ultimately, His objective in me is met when whatever chance occurrences are redeemed to reveal His glory.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Today's Writing Prompt: Memory

Write the earliest memory you can recall.
Hm . . . not sure how old I was, but I can remember eating dog food out of the bowl right alongside Andy, my mom's schnauzer. Judging by the deed, I'm thinking I really, really young.

I'm hoping I was, anyways ;o)

Re-post: I am unfaithful.

I'm re-posting this because, well, I (heart) the author bunches and I (heart) this post, too! I totally relate!

"Tomorrow, Jansen and I are playing in Bloomingport; our first performance since our highly anticipated collaboration (maybe just anticipated on our part, but still it counts). It’s in the afternoon, and I’m not exactly sure where it is, but considering the town is the size of my thumbnail, I’m sure we can find it. I’m looking forward to it. I like to perform, but the first song is always torture for me. I get so nervous, and I begin to shake terribly. After the first song, I’m usually okay. Another interesting thing is I didn’t use to be this way. I never got nervous. Maybe growing up and growing into one’s own insecurities has something to do with that. It’s not a good thing, but it happens to all of us. Once I think about it, I know that I was never secure about my musical abilities. The only reason I’ve stuck with it this long is because I have such a love affair with it. I desert it for a while, but I always come back.

I’m unfaithful to a lot of things in my life. Well, unfaithful to the things that will not benefit me immediately. I read a book halfway through and leave it on the coffee table for a month untouched. I’m unfaithful to the homework that I procrastinate on continuously. (Which by the way, is much better this semester.) Maybe a better word would be “inconsistent.” But “unfaithful” seems a little more truthful and raw. “Inconsistent” is the type of word that is perhaps a little more politically correct. But I try as often as possible to not be politically correct.

I’m unfaithful to the friends I don’t call because I’m “busy.” I’m unfaithful to my own body, for not treating it as well as I should. I’m unfaithful to myself when I do something or say something that isn’t me because it seemed like the right thing to do at the time. I talk to God for thirty seconds and then forget to take time to listen; I’m unfaithful.

But I can’t look at this list of “inconsistencies” and just accept them. I can’t just give up on myself. I have to move on and try to grow. And it’s amazing to me what I’ve learned about the world this year: so many people DO give up. Give up on themselves, their dreams, their faith; things that are part of their souls. Let me first say, please do not ever do this. Don’t lose the most important vital part of you. I know in my life it’s not easy. But I would rather face the hardships now and die in peace, than face sleepless nights when I retire wishing for what could have been. Maybe this is all my naivety. But I know I can try. I know I can pray. I know if I ask, God will keep growing me into the person he wants me to be.

And I did not expect this thing to be this long. Ha."

 Thanks, Coby!

Friday, September 10, 2010

This and That

When I'm summoned from bed by the door bell, and answer the door looking like this, and the person on the other side looks at me like that, I know my hair rocks.


Today's Writing Prompt: Extracurricular

Write about extracurricular activities you did when you were growing up, and how it affects (or doesn't affect) your life now. If you didn't do any extracurricular activities, write about what you would have liked to do.
  • I was involved in a lot of music type things. Varsity choir.  Some musicals. Solo and ensemble ribbon placement performances. Private lessons.
  • I also did a lot of art projects.
  • Oh, and I worked part-time as a caregiver my junior and senior year through a school-to-work program.
I'd like to think these activities helped me identify who I am. 
I mean, my blog title is Nathan Has a Song, after all, lol. I'm always looking for a new creative project to work on. And I'm still plugging away as a caregiver. With the exception of a year away to cleanse my pallet, it seems to be something I can't tear myself from.


" I love you, O LORD, my strength.
The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
       my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge.

He is my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
I call to the LORD, who is worthy of praise,
       and I am saved. . . "

Psalm 18:1-3

Today's Writing Prompt: Vaccination

Write about something (not a traditional contagious illness) against which you'd like to be vaccinated. 

Insomnia. Craziness. Obsessiveness. Anxiousness. Depression. Bad breath.

They all go together, so I think one shot should be able to cover it all.
Well, maybe not the bad breath . . . 


Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Like Nathan

Today I hung out at the local Barnes and Noble bookstore with my good friend, Nathan. As you can see from this picture, he's a fun guy.

The problem is, there is a language barrier between us. Nathan uses sign language, which I understand so very little of. We do play charades of sorts, but as one could imagine, this form of communication has its limitations.

However, this minor obstacle doesn't make me enjoy his company any less, and it certainly doesn't prevent Nathan from teaching me valuable lessons in life.

You see, Nathan naturally possesses a certain quality that I don't. He has an immeasurable excitability about him, a passion for the day-to-day things of life.

Overtime, I become so conditioned to things, blasé even to what I love dearly. Two months ago, each time I stepped outdoors I'd savor the floral perfume air of SoCal, but today I don't even notice it. I used to marvel at the breathtaking views that seemed all too beautiful to be real, but now I breeze past them unmoved.

But not Nathan. When he turns his attention towards something, its with intensity.

For example, Nathan loves to look through picture books. He doesn't just flip through them; he dives in head first. He submerges himself completely, and doesn't dare flip the page until he has saturated himself with every single tiny pixel. Page by page. Book by book.

And so today I was reminded, yet again, to refocus my mind to a place of awareness and appreciation for the things I love; to breathe a little more deeply, taking note of the air. To soak-in those beautiful mountains, and acknowledge the Artist who painted them so magnificently.

To dive in head first.
Like Nathan.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Ew! Hahahah . . . Ew!

I feel as though I should apologize to anyone who might glance at this blog post for subjecting them to this picture, but I couldn't help myself.

I mean . . . look at it! It makes me cringe. And then laugh. And then cringe some more.

I just updated my blog's look (duh) and during the process I had a very clear design in mind. So, as always, I began by searching for images that already exist that I might use or be inspired by.

I knew I wanted to create an image of a cut-out heart inside a real photographed chest cavity. I wondered how many images similar to this existed out there. So, I Googled it. And this is one of the images the search engine found.

Creative. And disturbing. Creatively disturbing? Hm . . .

Oh, but if you are interested in what images I did find and use in my design, here they are:

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Bedside Bible Readings

In the group-home I work in, all my boys are scared of the dark and sleep with the lights on, prefering an adult to be just outside their bedroom door until they're completely asleep. One night a few weeks ago I said, "I'm gonna sit out here and read my bible to myself. Want me to read it out loud to help you fall asleep?" And each night since then its been part of our routine. They ask me now, "Will you read more of the bible to me tonight?" and "What part are we reading tonight in the bible?" And last night, it went another step further. Now one boy in particular has began asking lots of questions as we read, really trying to understand who Jesus is. I see his gears turning. I love to watch the Spirit moving in people's lives! God is so good that He'd allow me to witness and be used in such beautiful transformations. I'm sometimes saddened that I'm not gifted and used in the ways I'd like to be, but moments like these remind me to be thankful for who I am and where God has led me.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Well Fortressed Ruts and Stubborn Surrender

I’ve spent the last several days in a rut. I’ve stubbornly walled myself into this rut, unwilling to surrender it. But why? Why would one refuse to cease wallowing in the misery of such a rut?

Being the self-deprecator I tend to be, I’m tempted to accept this as my own flawed mind. But then I realize that I am, in fact, in the ‘rut business.’ This is what people do. They establish these ways of thought or living that only quicken their demise. But yet they remain loyal to them. I can safely say that 100% of the residents and clients I’ve helped, and the personal counseling situations God has led me to, have all pertained to issues contributed to by such a rut.

I’ve strained myself to understand things that aren’t for me to understand. I been wounded by things that were never meant to be hurtful and do not really even relate to me at all. I’ve held tightly to what I value most and have attempted to project these values upon others as principles which they fail to live by, feeling disappointed in that. I’ve longed for what doesn’t exist in reality, and have failed to at least try to make it so, despite.

The emotions tied to these thoughts don’t have a name in this language.

I’ve guarded myself from the gentle nudges of the Spirit. I’ve intentionally avoided prayer and bible study. The walls wear, but I’ve continually reinforced them. It’s only been several days, yet incredibly exhausting. How do people live like this for years? Why would we allow ourselves to live like this for a day?

Do I have such pride that I cannot even surrender something so unpleasant? I used to never consider myself a prideful person, but I’ve learned that pride can manifest itself in many negative forms.

Although I’ve attempted to hold tight inside my rut of negativity, God is far more perseverant than I. And He knows my heart so well. He knows what makes it beat. What makes it break.

I found myself before a hurting child this evening. It could have been any child. And this child could have found himself in tears before any of the many adults in his life.

But there is no coincidence.

This was the child I’d been somewhat spiritually mentoring. This was the child who says he can hear my joy for the Lord and the Life of the Spirit in my voice when I sing. The joy and the life I’ve been neglectful of.

I knew immediately that I was supposed to pray with him. I caught myself and processed what that meant. It was a very clear train of thought. Allowing myself to surrender to the Spirit to pray for this boy meant surrendering my whole heart and mind. Allowing God’s presence to infiltrate shadows I had so ridiculously and inexplicably protected the past several days.

Of course, the right choice was obvious, but I had to think it through. I had to weigh it out.

Then I asked, “Can I pray with you?”

And few minutes later, we both stepped out of the ruts we had so stubbornly fortressed ourselves within.


There is a switch in my brain.

And all I've gotta do is flip it.

But I'm stubborn
So darn stubborn.


Today's Writing Prompt: Necessity

Think about something you enjoy that is not a necessity. How much would you miss it if it were no longer available to you? 

Oh, my! I can hardly just pick one . . .
Blogging is an obvious one.
And texting! I love to text.
And I have quite the sweet-tooth from time to time.

I'd really miss all three of those things a lot. Without blogging or texting, I'd probably just feel bored and maybe lonely.

I could do without sweets though. After the first couple of weeks of not having sugar I really don't crave it as much.Of course, it never last more than a few months, so maybe I do ;o)