she's only just begun

it has been quite the whirlwind recently. besides applying for jobs daily and keeping on top of the chores the apartment brings, we found out my Bepa passed away last saturday. there are bonuses to being unemployed. like taking a 6-day road trip with my sister in order to get to the funeral in south dakota.

day 1: drove 10 hours to missoula
day 2: drove 8ish hours to sheridan, wy
day 3: drove 8ish hours to platte, spent time with family at the prayer/memorial service. stayed up until 2 a.m. bonding with siblings.
day 4: attended funeral, sang at funeral, attended burial, ate ham buns. left less than 24 hours after arriving. drove 8ish hours back to sheridan, wy.
day 5: drove 8ish hours to missoula. proceeded to watch 3 movies, read 1 book, take a nap, and go for a walk while al & greg worked at an auction.
day 6: drove 10 hours back to lynden and slept for 10 hours that night.

it was totally worth it. it was good to remember bepa (& pake, too!) they were very special people to me. not everyone gets to be the only grandchildren of wonderful grandparents. al & i both shared papers at the prayer service we had written about bepa. she was a feisty woman who always had a joke or a trick up her sleeve. i miss her. but i know she's back with pake and loving every minute of it!

we have a bit of a break from traveling. well, until wednesday, anyway. we're heading back to missoula for al & greg's wedding. it will be a grand outdoor celebration that is probably going to include snow, based on the most recent forecast...


book discussion

this week, i finished reading a couple of books. one was reimagining church by frank viola, the other was the oh-so-controversial book the shack. as i finished the shack today, i was realizing that both books point out that much of our christian tradition is unfounded in biblical truths. why do we go to a building and listen to one person preach the word? why do we get caught up in religious activities rather than listening to the whisper (or shout, or dance) of the spirit?

naturally, we feel comfortable in something that's been part of our heritage in the last 500 years. i'm sure these ideas i'm reading about aren't new or groundbreaking to some, but to me, they are world-shattering. i felt defensive at some points while reading (but i'm still a christian! just because i go to church and sit in a pew and listen to the word being preached doesn't make me a bad person!) viola argues in his book that while god works through anything and everything, not everything is his best. the institutional church...is this really his best? numbing ourselves to the people around us (except during our 3-minute meet & greet) and insisting that going to a second service on sunday earns us "heaven points"? we might not say that out loud, but how many of us are really thinking that (perhaps unknowingly)?

i feel challenged right now. spiritually, mentally, emotionally...even physically. i want to go out and be part of god's kingdom building, but admitting that right now, that might involve only cleaning the toilet feels less than glorious. i want to challenge others in their faith or at least share the challenges i'm going through...but i find that i stumble over my words and my defenses are up. i feel as though i'm falling like i've never fallen before...living real life, even from the comforts of my cushy couch. i have no idea what the future holds, what tomorrow will bring, what job i'll be working at, what challenges lie ahead...but in a strange way, i feel more alive than i have in the past.

are we ever truly alive until everything we know is challenged or taken away? i used to go about my daily life, my daily routine, and feel safe. and yes, i still have daily routines and i still feel somewhat safe, but only when i ignore the little voice in my head that says everything is about to change. it's easy to hide from the truth and talk a big game. it's difficult to humble yourself and turn yourself completely over to god. thy will be done--the prayer that never fails, yet is terrifying to actually submit to.

i have so many more thoughts and so little talent with putting them down in an organized, sensible way. but i'm not entirely sure god or jesus or the spirit are sensible. in fact, i'm pretty sure that in our small group last week we talked about the spirit's presence being chaotic. so here are my chaotic thoughts.

i know lots of people who would disagree with some of the things i'm struggling with. those of you who find comfort in routine, i challenge you to invite the spirit to work. i am definitely one who resists change, but when i'm forced into it, i might as well make lemonade. let the spirit work. let him or her or it guide your life. breathe on me, breath of god.


time to find out

in the last week, i have had 2 interviews. last week's interview was good, but i felt a little uncomfortable because i wasn't sure of the job description and my interviewers didn't share it with me. they told me they'd call friday either way (i initiated this question and specifically asked if i should call). did i hear anything friday? no. did i even call and leave a message for the principal? yes. have i heard anything since? nope. arghhhh.

today's interview went exponentially better than last week's. this job is half a mile away (rather than 25) and much more suited to my capabilities. i felt great during and after the interview. the ladies who interviewed me were wonderfully friendly and i nailed the questions with honesty and poise. they said they'd call me this afternoon.

i haven't heard anything yet. my mind is racing, going through all the possibilities. i really want this job. i feel well-suited for it. it would be perfect. i understand there might be better candidates, which would be disappointing, but understandable. but honestly, i just want to know. i'm left wondering again...did they decide not to call me and figure i'd get the message soon enough? i really would like to have faith in these schools, but the track record so far isn't the greatest.

i may be overreacting. it's not 6:00 yet...but it's time to find out.