Thursday, March 27, 2008

On Reading and Listening

"I read the book." The words fell with a finality.
"I... Read... The... Book." I've heard this phrase used twice recently. It comes with an angry sort of confrontation. Like someone saying "look, I've performed this stupid exercise, and it is the most ridiculous thing ever". It also leaves no uncertainty as to the perfection of the interpretation of the book. Somehow, this phrase takes grace and humility and tosses both out the window. If we are discussing a book that we've all read, why state that you read it?
You read the book. But you did not listen to it. You didn't allow it to inform you, or challenge you, or even just amuse you. You read it. But you didn't let it in. You pushed it away, or ignored it, or simply let your eyes go over the pages, but the words stopped at your eyes instead of your mind.

I've determined never to use that phrase. The futile sense of meaningless accomplishment is too much for me.

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Waiting Under Bridges and other fun adventures.

Happy Easter!

Sorry I haven't posted recently. Work and life events, as well as a hesitancy to post what is not really processed have held back my hand.

Reading week last week was great. Not only was it Mel's birthday, but it was also my roommate's, and my friend Brad's. So three b-days, and three parties. By far, Mel's was the craziest, at a house in north van with a fitness pole playing a prominent part in the gatherings. (There is a video on Facebook for those of you who like that sort of thing). People running around in circles and so on.

The year is wrapping up quickly, and I'm still a little overwhelmed by the prospect of the year being almost done. I still feel like a newbie, and yet I'm applying for TA positions for next year! Ahh!

As for "waiting under bridges", we had a really interesting Easter Vigil at my church. We went under the Burrard Street bridge, and built a little fire in a pit, and sat in a circle with candles while we sang songs. It was a reflective service, one that understood the agony of Friday and waiting for the resurrection of Sunday when it has not yet come. But I thought it was so comforting to wait together. We forget that sometimes. Anyways, the bridge was neat. One of my pastors goes there regularly, and hangs out with the people who live there. She's also built a prayer labyrinth out of rocks and pebbles that she found around. I wonder how many of these spaces we completely overlook in our day to day wanderings.

It's like walking in the forest, which I posted about before. I sometimes go long periods without going in, and silently, it waits. But when I do go in, there is such peace that I wonder why I don't go more often.

Well, all that to say, I'm doing well, and thinking lots! I'll see all you peoples soon, as I'm planning to be back in E-town by May.

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

A Baby's Been Born!

The people who live upstairs have had a baby!

A little boy was born Tuesday morning, and now I can hear him crying at times. I haven't met him yet (and he still hasn't been named), but it's a neat thing to know he's up there. I spoke to the the dad today, and he is rather delighted.

I also saw Juno recently. Great movie. I highly recommend it. It reminded me of "Little Miss Sunshine", an indie movie that was heartfelt and sweet, and affirmed life in all its weird, comical, and tragic bits.

There is so much to learn, so much to experience, so much to see. I sometimes feel overwhelmed by it all. I wish I could read and watch and listen all at the same time. I think this is what reading "The Creation" by E. O. Wilson is doing to me. It's inspiring me to see the wonder in the world. And there are so many people I'd like to get to know.

I don't know if any of this is making sense. I also just finished the last paper due before reading week and the relief is palpable. That's probably why I have this sudden lust for life. Comes from finishing the eternal assignment. Of course, there are plenty more yet to do, but that's in weeks to come! Lots of time!

Well, good night good peoples!

Monday, March 3, 2008

Taste of the World

I haven't posted for a while, so I figured it was time.

We had "Taste of the World" here at Regent. It was like missionfest food and entertainment without the missions. Also, everything was actually by people authentically from the countries being represented. At the Canada booth we had TimBits, nanaimo squares, and salmon. Perfect.

Walking home, I was amazed by the difference between walking around during the day and during the night. The stars were out, and it was beautiful. And then you look around and there are cats everywhere. And skunks too, though I didn't go too closely to investigate. But there is this peaceful serenity, that you just don't see during the day. I could wander around for hours. But I also find that every time I do, I end up running into people I know who kinda look at me weird, and wonder if I'm quite well or not. Oh well.

In other news, I've been an unintentional poster girl. Last year, I went down to the National Pastor's Conference in San Diego with my buddies at Vanguard. Good times. Well, this time, they went back and found this photo!

Ironically, I know exactly when this was taken. I had sat down to read, and none other than Eugene Peterson sat down at the table next to me, and engaged in conversation with a pastor. I assume the photographer wanted pictures of him, and just coincidentally grabbed this one of me. Either way, I think I should get royalties!