Monthly Archives: December 2012

The Early Years

Instead of doing a big post on my New Year’s resolutions with plans for the future, I thought it’d be fun to use this writing prompt and talk about how I got here in the first place.

 

 

There was a time when I wasn’t afraid of anything.

 

I once was a very chill baby, even though I often found myself in odd predicaments.

 

Did I mention the frou-frou I got caught up in?

 

I’ve never been the best at being quiet, especially when I’m trying to get a photographer to capture my best side.

 

I thought electronic bunnies and shoes were silly and unnecessary. I still think that now.

I was clearly destined to be a Ravens fan. My first favorite color was “burple,” and I clearly remember only wanting to wear “burple” shirts.

 

I developed crazy hair and a love for baking and cooking.

 

I guess that’s how it all came together… sort of. :)

Third Round of Manna Mondays

Add to my list of 1000 gifts:

31. a white Christmas… even though I’m not usually a fan of snow :)

32. the season of giving

33. being able to start a new year in a little over two hours

34. having all the episodes of Grey’s Anatomy on Xfinity while on break from school

35. the most beautiful Christmas gift anyone ever gave me – a “JOY” necklace from my adoptive family that my little sisters picked out

36. a snow day/extra day off from school last week

37. friends who are in town for the holidays that I’ll be seeing tomorrow (I’m stoked!)

38. my new tattoo (it’s pretty awesome)

39. the way one of my little sisters cried when I left yesterday – I’m not happy she was sad, but it’s really sweet to know she cares so much. :)

40. talking about the NFL playoffs with my little brothers

Manna Monday

I’m still working on my list of one thousand gifts. Yay for Mondays and for being intentional about sharing what you’re thankful for! So without further ado…

 

16. two dogs that are recovering well (one from shots and the other from getting spayed)

17. the spirit of national unity in the face of tragedy

18. courageous people who aren’t afraid to lay down their lives for those around them (John 15:13)

19. taking my little “siblings” out this past weekend and spend some quality time with them

20. an instructor who let me leave early during practicals last week (with no penalties) so that I could attend a friend’s funeral

21. kitties that like to snuggle

22. a lovely first day of a new class

23. determination and self-discipline

24. long hugs from people who care

25. hoodies

26. seeing & hearing Darcie and Daire laugh, shriek, and have the time of their lives playing on the indoor playplace/slide

27. pictures that are worth WAY more than a thousand words

28. grace

29. people who make me think a little harder

30. warm blankets

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“The worst things in life come free to us.”

Most of you have probably heard Ed Sheeran’s poetic new hit, “The A Team.” It spoke to me the very first time I heard it, and I’ve known all the words for a couple of months now.

The song tells a story of a girl who became a fallen “angel” (not in the from-Heaven sense, but more in the sweet/had-potential sort of way). She’s a cocaine addict who sells her body for the money to get high, and all that’s left of her is the shell of the girl she once was. The cold world is slowly killing her.

Here’s the chorus:

“And they say
She’s in the Class A Team
Stuck in her daydream
Been this way since 18
But lately her face seems
Slowly sinking, wasting
Crumbling like pastries
And they scream
The worst things in life come free to us
Cause we’re just under the upper hand
And go mad for a couple of grams
And she don’t want to go outside tonight
And in a pipe she flies to the Motherland
Or sells love to another man
It’s too cold outside
For angels to fly
Angels to fly”

The first time I heard this song on the radio, I was drawn to the provocative line about halfway through the chorus that talks about the worst things in life.  I’ve always lived in a culture that is proud to proclaim that the BEST things in life are free, and I’ll admit that after first hearing it, I disagreed without really listening to him.

Today I was thinking about this song in a spiritual sense, and the entire thing made perfect sense to me. We all start out as God’s good creations. We’re small, squishy bundles that know nothing of the evils that exist in this world. Then we grow up, and we make choices – some of which are terrible. Sometimes we can laugh off our mistakes and learn from them, but others aren’t so easy to recover from.

On some level, we’re all wasting away, but I think of God as a preservative that keeps us fresher longer. I know from personal experience that pushing God away can and will quickly turn into a crumbling emotional situation. Being on a team with Jesus should be a simple choice, right? Because being with God is supposed to be free, isn’t it? At least that’s what I originally thought.

I began to think of it like the democratic system of government we have in the United States. We give up certain rights (doing whatever we please) to gain others (being safe and protected). There are people in this country who don’t believe in democracy and who refuse to follow our laws. The fact that they don’t believe in them doesn’t cause the laws go away, and it certainly doesn’t make it okay for them to behave any way they choose. It just means that the system recognizes their right to be independent and be as cooperative as they decide to be.

Living for God is a lot similar. We’re recognized by our heavenly father as being independent, so we’re allowed to make our own choices. But in order to love God, you have to give up certain things and learn to prioritize others. While it’s certainly nothing compared to the price Jesus paid for all of us, it’s still something. It’s the price of accepting love and giving it in return.

We’re surrounded by evil things all the time – anger, hatred, jealousy, greed, etc. The devil has more locations than McDonald’s. His things – the very worst things in existence – are always free, but they’re not good for us. Poison might be inexpensive, but that doesn’t mean we should choose it over food. God is nourishment and love, and sometimes getting the proper nutrients comes at a higher cost on the front end.

I’m not a drug addict, but I’ve been lost like the girl in Ed Sheeran’s song. Some days, I still find myself without any idea as to where I am, but since I stopped taking free items and started investing in real products, I find that I always have a compass in the word of God.  :)

Manna Monday

The authors of a few blogs I’ve recently started reading have committed to blogging about one thousand gifts they’ve received from God (just like the author of the book you can check out by clicking that link). They do this over a period of weeks, listing a certain number at a time one day a week. I LOVE (notice the emphasis) this idea, and I’ve decided to do the same thing here at “So I Was Thinking…” and call it Manna Monday. (Manna was God’s sustaining food gift to the hungry Israelites after Moses led them out of Egypt. You can read more about that here.)

The number might fluctuate a little, but I’m going to make a goal of having at least 10 items on my list each week.

One thousand gifts – the beginning:

 

1. the opportunity to get an education

2. the caffeine that helps wake me up daily so that I can go get that education

3. friends who share revelations they’ve had during their individual bible studies

4. the beautiful church I’ve been visiting in hopes of finding a new “church home”

5. the amazing friend/play mama who invited me to attend that church with her and who gives of herself daily

6. my first experience helping to decorate the outside of a house for Christmas (SO fun! I felt like I was in a movie.)

7. the love of all the silly, giggly, dramatic, craycray children in my life

8. living in Memphis – I have mad love for M-town.

9. technology (specifically the combination of calculators, computers, the internet, and google) that has been helping me with a project this week after I spent a month procrastinating

10. books

11. food coloring

12. Grizzlies season tickets

13. pets that run to the door to greet me when they hear me in the driveway

14. the spirit of the holidays

15. the people who surround me and fill my life with wonderful moments

 

Ahh, I love this! (I actually had to cut myself off.) Check back in each week for more Manna Monday! :)

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