advent, week 1.

We are waiting
for the first gasp
for the last sigh
for the smile
for the kiss
for the bell

we are waiting
for the papers to be signed
for the phone to ring
for the message to arrive
for the end
for the beginning

we are waiting for the sky to open up
we are waiting for the sun and stars to fall

we live along the taut-pulled string of time
anticipating its snap or its slackening
and the day when we see
that it’s been sewn into a robe of splendor
for its Maker

watch the rising day.

1. I went to go see Matthew Smith with a couple of friends on Sunday night, and have thus been humming this to myself at work all week:

2. For some reason, the image in my head whenever I pray lately is that of a warrior standing guard over another one, sword drawn, watching the night, with the intent that the enemy shall take neither one of them in the darkness. Perhaps this is appropriate.

3. Somehow today during a conversation with a coworker, I became the future recipient of a plaid cloak in exchange for a Doctor Who scarf. If you needed any more confirmation of our nerddom at Half-Price Books, there you have it.

4. I really want to get people together to go Christmas caroling this year. I have a lot of musically talented friends and I’d love to make music with y’all. (Or even my not-musically-talented friends, at that.) This needs to happen.

5. I am attempting to live my life by the church calendar, not the retail calendar, so as long as I can help it, there will be no Christmas shopping or Christmas music at least until the first Sunday of Advent.

6. Dadgum. I want a piece of pie.

7. OMG YOU GUYS THE HUNGER GAMES TRAILER. (Excuse me while I hyperventilate.) If you have not read those books yet, go read them soon before the movie comes out.

8. Hey, guess what? You are loved.

haikus for an evergreen

i never told you,
but i always thought i was
the luckiest one.

* * *
she lights up your words
like neon and electric
current–they shine loud.

* * *
dig down your roots, oh
mighty tree, and bring more birds
into your branches.

* * *
once you called me a
winter flower. now i am
waiting for the spring.

* * *
why think about the
blade that cut me? it hit me
while beheading fear.

* * *
our hearts, our hands, our
minds are not our own to give
and guard as we choose.

come make your home with us

It needs music and probably some lyrical tweaking, so feel free to critique:

Mighty everlasting God
The strong and faithful Father
You have made your home with us
And made us sons and daughters

Righteous Son of God and man
You call Yourself our brother
You pitched Your tent among the poor
Drew us to one another

Father, Son, and Spirit
The mystery, both One and Three
Everlasting community
Come make your home with us

Spirit, wind and holy flame
You made our hearts Your temple
Built ruins into joyful praise
Made strangers into a people

What the Father proclaimed before there was time
So the Son has bought and the Spirit supplied
Our adoption as children of the mightiest King
So we come to the table and sing

And we from every tribe and tongue
From every race and nation
Come only by Your grace alone
To drink of this salvation


or, what happened this weekend:

* On Thursday, I went out to coffee after work with my friend Mia; we got to tell each other our stories and drink some americanos and pray for one another.

* And then I went to the Life Center, which is a homeless shelter that my church has worked with for a while now. Our community group meets there once a month and we eat dinner and do Bible study with those folks. They’re great to hang out with, but there’s a lot of deliverance that needs to happen there. Anyway, the thing about doing Bible study at the Life Center is that sometimes discussion can get derailed pretty quickly, so it’s always fun to wrangle it back to Jesus and keep it there…

* Friday night my friend Meagan had an art show with some other folks at this place in Montrose. Beforehand a bunch of us went to dinner and got some of the best ribs I have ever eaten (like, you couldn’t pick them up because the meat would have just fallen off back onto the plate anyway) and listened to terrible rap music and chatted. The art show itself was pretty incredible, with lots of talent represented (Meagan’s stuff was amazing!), and a bunch of people from church came out to support our buddy. My friend Leon and I met this guy named Caleb from the place that hosted it; he’s a believer, and we had some good conversation about reaching and loving the city.

* And then on Saturday I hosted a birthday/housewarming party for my friend Steph and her mom, so we prepped for that all day (I think we hit every grocery store in a five-mile radius, right, Steph?). The party itself was a blast; a lot of different people from their different circles came out (including my dad, the hermit, which was a minor miracle) and we ate food and talked and hung out and listened to music. So if you’re reading this and you came out, thanks again!

* Sunday I got to sing at church again (Kaleoians sound beautiful when we sing together and it makes my heart happy). We had a guest preacher who talked to us about God’s faithfulness to keep His promises in the middle of our unfaithfulness, which did me a lot of good to hear. And a bunch of us went to lunch (Mission Burrito = yum) and then I went to Steph’s and took a nap on her couch (hallelujah).

* So on Sunday nights a group of us have been praying at Leon and Ephrem’s apartment; last night for some reason was particularly good. Somehow we got from telling each other the worst injuries we’ve ever had to sharing our testimonies, which was amazing…

* And the crazy thing is that all last week I was feeling kind of discouraged and having to preach the gospel to myself a lot, and then all this weekend God has been pouring all this beauty out on me and all these people around me. His promises are true. He is more than faithful to us.

things i’ve been thinking about this week.

How this blog is turning into lists of what I’ve been thinking about this week… :p

Sleep and coffee (always). (I’m not kidding.)

How much I use people or run from them instead of loving them.

Wondering how to use the gifts I’ve been given to love people.

How the biggest lie I believe is that no one wants me, and what a wonder it is that people actually do.

I can’t wait for Advent (which feels kind of ironic). But Advent’s my favorite season of the church year–as someone who feels the weight of the brokenness of the world, it’s the time to cry out for it to be healed.

It’s time to break out Mumford & Sons.

Seriously, can we not wait until after Thanksgiving to start doing Christmas displays and commercials? Is it that urgent?