Thursday, December 31, 2009

It made me laugh.

I'm adding my most recent book to my "book journal" and as I flipped back to what I was reading this time last year, I had to chuckle. I remember Kris and I laying on my bed reading. When suddenly she looks over at me and asks, "Are those tears?"

My only reply was "he was a good man."

She replied with an expression somewhere between confused, concerned, annoyed, entertained, and maybe just a little bit frightened. I tried to explain that Bran had died, and what a great character he had been throughout the trilogy. He was not a main character, just a solid figure always in the background and I was suddenly struck with tears when he lost his life at the end.

I guess crying in books is becoming a December ritual. Yesterday, I sat alone on my bed, tears trickling down my cheeks as I read through the final 50 pages of The Last Song. I know, I know, I am a sap. And this past week I've been more of one than ever... I've cried like 3 times this week. That's more than the past 3 months I think! (I know what some of you are thinking-- No.)

PS, I wish Nicholas Sparks would stop committing film-suicide by allowing such poor casting of his films. Miley Cyrus? crap. Channing Tatum? more crap. He brings unbelievable characters to life, and then poor acting murders them. :( Who knows, maybe Tatum will surprise me with some hidden talent. As of now, he's just a pretty face. I do think that the singer of the background song in the Dear John trailer sounds an awful lot like his voice (I thought it was him... but it's Snow Patrol) .... I'll try to give him a chance. I really do want him to do well in this film, despite my apprehensions. I'm just preparing myself for the worst... Miley Cyrus? REALLY? And the guy playing her 'man' (Will, aka, my dream guy), not at all what I pictured (or how Sparks describes him). dangit.

For those of you who have been confused for the last 3 minutes, Nicholas Sparks (author of the novels Message in a Bottle, A Walk to Remember, The Notebook, and Nights in Rodanthe) has had two more novels brought to the silverscreen:

Dear John
The Last Song

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

I got home from work Yesterday to find my family watching While You Were Sleeping and doing a puzzle- and Jason & Dad at it at some boardgame (I think Chess). Awww, I love my family's holiday ways. I don't necessarily care for puzzles myself, but I always get sucked in because I feel I have to contribute.... plus, lets be honest, I have always hated being left out. Whatever is going on, I want to be a part of it. ALL the more when it comes to a family tradition... thus, 'I puzzle.'

They then started Marley & Me... I left early on to shower and get ready for a potential hang-out with friends. I even did my hair. (I know, I know). I came back to find just Kris and my dad watching the movie. I sat down. Mistake.

I bawled. I haven't bawled like that in a long time. I don't even know what it was. We had a dog die when I was a little girl, over Christmas. For this reason, you'd think maybe my dad wouldn't have brought THAT movie home over Christmas. It was just Kris and I at the end of the film and what started as little trickles down my cheek turned into heaving. Kris started laughing at me, when made me start laughing, only I was genuinely bawling... my cheeks were wet, my chin was dripping, my hair (which I'd just blow-dried) was all sticking to my wet cheek.

I got up and went into the other room to blow my nose and try to collect myself. I looked at my red eyes in the mirror and started laughing-crying again, my eyes were SO red. And upon hearing me blow my nose, Kris started laughing all over.

My dad came down as it finished and Kris told him about his blabbering baby of a youngest daughter (23 years old I might add). He didn't believe us, "I heard you two laughing from upstairs" and Kris lost it laughing again.....

After that, I was not in the emotional state for a thriller of a movie, so I went up stairs and read. For the next 5 hours, I read. All dressed up, with my hair blown out (girls, you know how long it can take to blow out your hair with a round brush...), I read. It was actually a very nice evening. When Kim and Jason returned to find me sitting on the couch all alone, dressed to go out, they kinda chuckled too.

Around 10 my dad joined me in the living room, where we read and drank hot chocolate for a couple more hours.

Today, after a morning of working from home, we are off to Avatar! Can't wait...

Friday, December 25, 2009

I'd forgotten JUST how funny my brother-in-law is. :)

"What do you mean, how'd I get there? I'm parked there!"


What's the one word in the dictionary with no vowels?

I didn't know it was that kind of family.


"Well, it's about time, I guess he should 'pee or get off the horse'" (actually, that was Kim, just retold to us by Jason)

...The games always moving.


Stop fighting girls, you're both pretty. (an old one, but a favorite)

I like my back scratched at pain, just backed off a notch.

B, as in 'baked beans.' P as in ... 'pneumonia.'

(J) "We're one."
--(K) "You weren't one with me in there"
(J) "Well thats because you weren't one you were two"
--(K) "That's disgusting"

Kim & Jason are on a plane here, phew.

We've decided to postpone Christmas one day so we can still enjoy all our traditions with them---

Merry Christmas Eve (again)!

I hope you all have a wonderful day with your families, loving on each other and thanking God for the incredible gift of salvation, and relationship with Him.

If you get a chance this holiday season, read through not only the story of Jesus's birth, but of when He calls His disciples. We read it a few weeks ago and I was so moved by the unique ways He drew each of them. I started to cry when He spoke to Phillip, Phillip who had been faithful and righteous all his life--- he had been living under the old law and suddenly he met his heart's desire, Jesus Christ, Immanuel extended relationship to him. He told Phillip who he was. Phillip wanted to be sure it was true and when he returned with a question, Jesus provided evidence. Aww, Jesus called the seekers.

I cannot even imagine what Phillip must have felt. Only in a small measure can I relate when I think of the pieces of God I haven't yet seen, and the measure of relationship I haven't yet received - I just can't help but cry with such joy and gratefulness and love when I think of the moment when a world who'd longed for their king suddenly were offered friendship and eternal life. Not many were faithful while they waited, but Phillip was.

I'd like to be like Phillip, and I want to relate to Jesus with that same overwhelming love every day, and I want to wait faithfully in obedience and righteousness for the fullness of that love to come. And today, I want to celebrate the birth, life and crucifixion of my God and King: His sacrifices that restored me.

I'm praying this holiday season changes each of us for the better, and draws us closer to our Savior & King.

I love you all- Merry Christmas!!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Umm.. Is this Christmas Break?

I think I took a wrong turn? Can you help me find "Christmas Break?" Maybe draw me a map, or point me to the yellow brick road or something?

Thus far, I haven't had a nap.. or read a book... nor tasted a hot buttered rum. :/

I've been desperately tired, and working. I can't complain too much though, because I have had a wonderful evening at my buddy T's house for dinner, another last night at the Mitchell's, I've gone to a movie with Kris, and watched one with Todd. But I've yet to get a full fun-relaxing-silly day.

Todd and I had planned to spend an entire day doing all of our very favorite things we've ever done together--- baking red velvet cupcakes, watching our special movie, and our holiday movies we both love, making some random dinner neither of us have ever made, eating popcorn (todd) & kettle corn (me). Drinking lattes. It was going to be grand.

Instead, I fell asleep while we watched Ghost Town, and then I went home. It was still fun and I laughed plenty over the course of the few hours.... but it wasn't the unbelievably amazing day my twin and I had planned.

So, 8:30pm, and instead of hanging with Morgs tonight, I am going to sleep because I am exhausted after another long day of work.

Bright light of hope: Kim & Jason fly in tomorrow night, and with them I hope the Christmas break I've been day dreaming about.

Night, sweet dreams, love you all! Hope I get to see some of you before the holiday is over.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Grades are posted. Not too shabby.

Funny thing is, the class that kicked my boo-tay the most this quarter and I ended up with the lowest grade in, was architecture 350. It's just a little 3-credit class that I need for non-english VLPA (visual, learning, performing arts) credits. And THEY ended up bringing down my overall GPA most. AND I'm signed up for part 2 next quarter. I could get the exact same credits filled in the 100 level architecture course, but I can't get into it. :(

Even worse... I took Arch 150 last spring, and I learned more in it, enjoyed it more overall, and got a 4.0... and the exact same type and amount of credit as this tough class. Man...I think I am going to keep checking for an opening in Arch 151.

Anyways, I'm overall happy with how the quarter turned English GPA went up a tiny bit I think and that makes me smile.

Love ya all. Hope you are staying calm in this last christmas shopping rush.

Friday, December 18, 2009

A few days ago, I had one of those moments where I felt a slight check: am I being myself?

I was driving alone in the car and was evaluating a bit, as many of us do this time of year. My family has a Christmas tradition of giving 3 (some years 5), 'gifts to the Lord.' It's really more of a gift to ourselves I guess... He doesn't need us to give Him anything. Regardless, they can be anything. Last year a few of mine were to take better care of my body, not just exercise but doctors appointments when needed- resolving health issues I sometimes (okay, more than sometimes) like to ignore. I was convicted by my care of His temple. There were several promises; some I accomplished, some I haven't.

But this is where I began thinking of who I have become, and who I am becoming. I was thinking on who I once was, and the changes I am grateful for.... and the pieces of who I once was that I miss. There's a balance of who I know I am called to be, and it involves being pure, true love that requires great self-control, and it also involves not being intimidating to others. I don't want walls up. I also don't want my pet-peves or OCD to cause others to someday feel like they can't be themselves around me. Practically: I NEED my bathroom to be clean, and I really love my bedroom to be in shape, bed made in the morning, drawers all lined up, floor pretty. However, I don't want to be the woman someday who friends don't want to come over because their house isn't clean.

It's these two battling parts of me that want to be orderly, controlled, self-governed.... and the other side of me that's a little crazy and free. I'm not totally certain what the ratio is supposed to be yet, but I miss something about who I once was. I think maybe I've been trying to be something I'm not... to a degree.

It's easy to look at what you want in life, and try to be what you think seems fitting to that neat picture. But I know ultimately, that won't make me happy. I do NOT want to orchestrate my own life, nor do I want to fall into something by default. I want to be who God created me to be. I want to be who I am. It seems all the more important these days as I draw closer to that 'someday' of marriage. I'd like to be who I am, and trust that the Lord will bring along the man who loves all the seemingly-opposite pieces of who I am.

Perhaps this year one of my gifts will be to find who I am.... who He already knows I am... again. I expect that this is a never-ending process... perhaps some of you ladies who've lived a few years longer then me can chime in and give a little big sister/motherly wisdom....

What should be my perspective in this? Should I be intentional? And if so, how itentional? I know once again, there's a balance of just trusting the Lord and just being but there is also an intentionality that will bring me even more growth and better fruit...

(Mom, Kim, Linda, sisters... others who may be reading... please, invest..)

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Today is the Day!!

One hour and 27 minutes.

Putting in a little last minute studying at Starbucks. It's with equal dread and anticipation that I greet each new minute.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

11pm. I feel ready for my Astronomy final. :)

I worked entirely backwards in preparation. Finished my english papers, which are due by 2pm. Then I finished studying for my Astronomy final which is 10:30a-12pm. Tomorrow morning I will wake up at 5am, shower and head to campus where I will study until my Architecture exam at 8:30am.

Please feel free to pray.

Or fast, as the Spirit so leads you ;)

(not really the fasting part... unless the Spirit really does lead you, then you better).

Night all. See you soon!
Just finished my two short (3 pages each) analytical essays for Honors English! I am more or less DONE with Honors English for the quarter, I just need to print them out and turn them in tomorrow! (Though, I'll probably give my major paper another revision before then. ;)

YEAH- I think I'll clean my room real quick to celebrate... then its back to studying for Architecture and Astronomy. It's with both dread and excitement that I await tomorrow morning :0

Love you all, and I'll be back to real life soon... in approximately 27 hours. ;)

Monday, December 14, 2009

I just finished by huge research paper for Honors English.

My gift to myself?

Now its back to studying for architecture for the next 6 hours.

Then? Writing the two revisions for Honors English.

I will probably have to miss Bible Study tonight, and that makes me genuinely sad.

Sunday, December 13, 2009

On nights like tonight, when I realize just how much I need to memorize for my architecture final, and that I've somehow lost the papers I need to revise for my honors english, and that I still haven't even begun studying for my astronomy final...

on these nights...

It's amazing how happy a good black pen can make me. As I'm sitting here writing out all my architecture sites, my favorite one was dying on me and I was about to put on my shoes and go to the store to buy a new one. First, I asked my mom. I walked out to her at the computer and held up my dying warrior, "Mom, do you happen to have one of these?" She opened up the drawer right in front of her and pulled one out and handed it to me. The smile spread across my face as I asked in disbelief, "REALLY?"

She then told me we have a whole drawer of them in the library. Christmas came early.

As I walked back to my room I let her know "I was just about to put on my shoes and go buy one." From my desk in my room I heard her reply, "Okay Tom Kelly."

What can I say, Kris may be right.... I am pretty much my dad, in a little girl's body. When the world is crumbling around me and I feel anxiety about to set in, I take out a blank piece of white paper (this is NOT like Dad, he needs lines) and a crisp black pen that makes lines so sharp and dark I feel those lines may actually be able to cut through all my troubles.

I have quite a few troubles to face tonight.... good thing I've got reserves in the library. ;)

Saturday, December 12, 2009

I hope everything slows down this Christmas. :) Wouldn't that be nice-- Chirstmas in slow-motion? :)

Well, it's a pleasant thought at least.

Saturday morning (early afternoon) and I just got off work. I went from Starbucks to Starbucks- studying in the Rose HIll sbux while I get my oil changed and fluids checked next door. I thought that was pretty brilliant of me ;)

1pm I head to my food-drive slot. Then it's study time again until 6:30, when I get to go take the Ruff kids out to dinner and something fun. In these mini study-episodes I'm hoping to sure up my research paper, which is now officially 10 pages long (the minimum page requirement) and draws form 9 sources (I need one more to fit the requirement). Its still very rough, but I need to just give myself a time limit and call it done....because I still have two more short papers to revise and 2 more final exams to prepare for. :-0

Yes, Christmas break... christmas shopping, nap times, hot buttered rums (?), free-time reading, baking, traditions, movies, kim & jason..... :)

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Paper update:
I was hoping to be done in an hour. I'm at the top of page 6. Not bad, but not where I wanted to be. And I feel sick, so I'm heading to bed. Long day again tomorrow. I have at least 5 more pages to write, though in reality it will probably end up being more like 8-10. Plus bibliography. Even still, if I finish this paper by tomorrow I will be doing well. So please pray for more wisdom, clear thought, ability to organize my arguments and communicate my ideas.... as well as focus. :)

Peace is always good too, you could pray for peace.

Thanks. Hope you guys are keeping warm and enjoying the holiday season.

(This pick has nothing to do with this blog... I just love this picture.)
Today is going to be great. I'm already finished with classes for the day. I'm heading in to the office to pick up some... money. And then I'll probably swing by my Starbucks to check the schedule, say hello, remind people I still work there, etc. :)

Then, with a couple small exceptions, my work today will be shopping, and writing my paper.

When I was first hired on at UIEvolution 3 years ago, they ran a 'holiday concierge program' as a benefit. My first job was to be a personal shopper for a month. Minus one or two grumpy people, it was a blast! This year, they've brought it back. So for the next month, I will be the shopping and errands queen. I LOVE it. :)

I already have $1200 worth of requests that will send me to JCrew, Walmart, Costco, Toys R Us, The Lego Store, Bell Square.. and so on! :) The only thing spoiling the fun, is I also need to write this paper.... today.

Love you guys.

Tuesday, December 08, 2009

I just voted for the first time ever for a contestant on a tv show.

We (we being my mom and I, but I guess it was I since only one can dial) voted somewhere around 10-15 times for Kathryn.

We also voted like 5-8 times for Ellenore.

Unfortunately we weren't planning on voting, so we didn't note the numbers of the guys. Mom's favorite is Russell, I also like Jakob I think. But no votes from us. Sorry fellas.
Finishing strong.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Sitting in my Monday afternoon spot, in the Astronomy building, like I do every Monday at this time. Thankfully, this will be the last time. I haven't finished my lab because I just realized I need a scientific calculator... but besides that the day is going rather well. Today begins my real push on finals. On December 16th I have my Architecture final from 8:30-10:20am. In the same room, I have my Astronomy final directly following, from 10:30-12:20am. Then I have an hour and a half to turn in my Final Research paper for my Honors English, as well as the 2 analytical rewrites (each about 3-4 pages double spaced). This is going to be fun. And when I say 'fun' I mean it strictly in the Mrs. Gilbert-way.

This is going to require me getting some of these done (like completely ready) in the next couple days. I'm having a hard time determining what order to tackle this in though. I'd like to just start with studying for architecture because it's strictly memorization and seems most straight-forward. But all that memorization means I should probably do it closer to the test so its fresh. My paper is probably what I should do first, and I have been trying to (I've already selected my research question/topic, met with my professor about it, met with a librarian, and scanned the 5 books I came home with). However, the books I found in our hour together researching.... aren't really helpful.

I've decided to look into the common trope in two of the books I read in this class, childbirth. As the course focuses on 'aesthetics in times of political crisis' (we specifically focused on South Africa), my research paper will be considering what the stakes are behind closing one novel with a nameless birth, and another novel which subtely constrasts a white couple not conceiving and a black south african couple conceiving. I like it. I'm sincerely curious about this, and it allows me to deeply consider politics, childbirth, national identity, and crisis. Since my freshmen year I've been toying with the idea of writing a book on abortion, from an ethnographic approach. I can't help but get a bit giddy at the idea of how the Lord is bringing me back to that original passion... and I think it is this grandeur idea of this piece of writing which I have been fiddling with, and trying to determine how to touch for the past 4 years that is ultimately making it SO hard for me to try to write this research paper which is ultimately not THAT big of a deal for this one class. Yes, it is %50 of my grade, but it is only 7-10 pages I believe. I wrote a 19-page research paper last spring, quite easily.

This paper will not be about abortion, but it is leading me into the greater discussion of childbirth as a political event, a personal freedom, and individual decision... childbirth and its erovacable connection to a nation. What does it mean to say 'It is not the time for childbirth' as Serote's character speaks. What does it mean to end a book with the both the pain and hope of a child's birth? What does it mean for a writer to create a potential future, in which the previously powerful race becomes barren, and those once held down, overcome, and remain fruitful?

What does it mean when a nation becomes more concerned with convenience than protecting innocence? What does it mean when a nation sees childbirth as an individual choice, and entirely forgets that it is also a political, national statement?

I think I've prayed more over this paper already then any other piece I have written in college. THIS is what I am passionate about ultimately writing, and while I don't believe this piece is it, I do think what I am supposed to search out right now is a part of the knowledge I am supposed to get for what I someday will write. It is both exciting and terrifying when you step into a moment that you know is a training ground for your destiny. Its no more games, its no more neutral, unobserved mindsets, theologies, philosophies or filler sentences. What I write here is not just a part I am playing, but it is my lines to speak in this grand story unfolding, and they need to be cohesive with the part I'll play in its climax.... the part I know has been written for me, the climax I know is coming, and the resolution I may give my life for.

"The birth of a child is a political event. So is the absence..."
-Births and Power: Social Change and the Politics of Reproduction

Saturday, December 05, 2009

Secret (almost):
I am bad at high-fives. Quite bad. Someone just broke it to me a couple weeks ago.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Cruelty: looking up hotels in Barcelona for two of my VP's.

I want to travel so badly right now, and a suite in Barcelona makes my mouth water a bit at the moment. Actually, the mouth watering may be from the smell of that delicious food working its way through the office right now. Why does everything smell delicious on fasting day? :0

Thursday, December 03, 2009

Hmm, I opened Fenelon's Seeking Heart tonight, and I heard the echo of Kristin's voice.

Like literally, my sister said this to me just yesterday.

"Encourage peace. Become deaf to your overactive imagination. Your spinning imagination will haurm your health and make your spiritual life very dry. You worry yourself sick for no good reason."

Fenelon carries on to say, "Allow yourself one excess: be excessively obedient."

"Can true love hesitate when the Well-Beloved asks?"


Check out how amazing the Message Remix wording of Romans 12 is- I LOVE it!!

So here's what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life -- your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life -- and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for Him. Don't become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You'll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.
Love from the center of who you are; don't fake it. Run for dear life from evil, hold on for dear life to good. Be good friends who love deeply; practice playing second fiddle. Don't burn out; keep yourselves fueled and aflame. Be alert servants of the Master, cheerfully expectant. Don't quit in hard times; pray all the harder. Help needy Christians; be inventive in hospitality. Bless your enemies; no cursing under your breath. Laugh with your happy friends when they're happy; share tears when they're down. Get along with each other; don't be stuck-up. Make friends with nobodies; don't be the great somebody. Don't hit back; discover beauty in everyone. If you've got it in you, get along with everybody. Don't insist on getting even; thats not for you to do. "I'll do the judging," says God. "I'll take care of it."
Don't let evil get the best of you; get the best of evil by doing good.

WOW!!! This is a new favorite verse. I love it! And remarkably it ties in perfectly with what we talked about at Homegroup tonight... which unsurprisingly, is exactly what God has been working at my heart this week, becoming truly Christ-like, and a mature Christian... pouring out to others. I love so much of this verse I can't even list all my favorite lines! All I can do is read it over and over tonight, praying that it will work its way into me.
I want to be swept away in an adventure. (right now).
If this isn't the picture of a girls library...I don't know what is.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

If I could write you something beautiful
Dutifully, my pen would scroll.
First I'd look for that which grows deep.
And when I'd found the strongest tree,
I'd carve my secrets in his side.
My dreams would span the whole trunk-wide.
The tears that never touched my face
You'd silently read across his base.
And as you wrapped your arms around,
You'd feel my memories surround.

If I could write you something beautiful
You might come to know me well.

Sorry, fenelon just made me break again... like snotty, little kid crying.

I don't think I've ever read a 'devotional' that just so bluntly nailed my heart over, and over. I went to grab my journal, and decided to grab The Seeking Heart. I opened it to a random page actually and it was titled "Wandering Thoughts." Ouch. Thats all I can say. In a lot of frustration and a bit of heart ache, I opened it up and started to read...

....Accept, despite your natural reservations, all that God brings to you to exercise your faith. Don't worry about whether you will have the strength to do the right thing. Grace comes only in the moment that you need it. Just be willing to receive your trials with a cheerful heart.

When you see your thoughts wandering, call yourself back to the present moment, but do not struggle with your thoughts. Just stay in the present and you will soon notice your Lord by your side again. The more you turn back to Him just as soon as you sense yourself wandering, the sooner you will have the blessing of knowing the indwelling presence of Christ in a more constant and familiar way.

When you are completely given to God, all that you do is profitable, even if you don't do much. Offer your future up to God, and don't try to figure out what will happen to you. It shows your faithlessness when you want to know the future that God has chosen to conceal from all of us.

Leave the future to God. The best preparation is to die to self-will and give yourself wholly to God. Your spirit will grow as you become less weighed down by your self-nature. You get used to a life full of strife and endless labor and think this is normal. You will be surprised to see how simple and straightforward your life in God is.

It is enough to look to God with confidence, without trying to explain the past or reason out the future.... You will make a lot of progress if you just keep turning back to God. This is much better than getting all upset about your faults and failures.

As for the depression that grows out of a melancholy personality, there are natural things that will help you- a good diet and exercise. [LOL!! How very true... love this man's reality!] ...

If anything is capable of enlarging the spirit and freeing you, it is entire surrender to God. Nothing will keep your mind calm, content, and joyful as living like a child in the arms of God.

Christ wants you to follow the will of God and to live it out in the present moment...

... Peacefully do what stands before you. Desire or refuse nothing. Whether people seek you out or reject you, whether they applaud or oppose you, what does it matter? It is God, not the gifts of God and not yourself, that you seek.

Jesus says, "Lean on me for I am meek and lowly of heart, and you will find rest." Stay gentle and humble and you will know the peace and rest of God.

That is a man I could truly fall in love with, the one who is a King, yet says, 'Lean on me for I am meek and lowly of heart, and you will find rest.'
I've been slowly reading through Matthew (like reeaaallly slowly), and I came across something today I'd never realized.

We all know the story of Jesus feeding the 5 Thousand with a little boy's lunch, right? And it's no doubt a miracle to be marveled at. But this morning, I'm marveling at something else in the story.

I don't want to in any way make God in my own image.... but Jesus must have felt great pain, right? He was secure in His Father's love and no doubt that was the ultimate comfort, but he faced a great deal of painful things during His 33 years on earth as a man.

Matthew 14 starts off explaining the death of John the Baptist. When the news reached Jesus, it says "He withdrew from there in a boat to a desolate place by himself" (v 13). It's then that masses hear the news, and follow Him. When it begins to get late in the day, his disciples suggest Jesus send them away to go get food. I think I would have appreciated this suggestion. I would not be so gracious if I'd just heard of the brutal murder of my cousin, the one who lept in his mothers womb at my conception into the earth, the one who baptized me, and spent his life in sacrifice, 'preparing the way' for me. I'd have definitely got in a boat and gone away, alone. And if people came after.... huh.

But what does Jesus do? He feeds them.

He then dismisses them, and once again goes away alone. He heads up the mountain.

In fact, its later the same night that Peter walks on water.

Remarkable that two of the most memorable miracles were performed on a day when Jesus faced one of the greatest pains we know on earth- the loss of a close friend. Funny how we disqualify ourselves so often to pour out to others because we feel unready, empty, or broken. Okay, its not really funny... It's incredibly convicting. It's enough to break me even now, and make me long to do something as remarkable and loving as either of the two miracles Jesus did that day. It makes me want to commit to not push others away in my own pain, but even then, even on some day yet to come, when I feel the most wounded and empty, to give.

Aw, Lord, make me like You!