Monday, February 28, 2011

Ready to Fly. Here We Go.


Ready. Set. (Hold your breath.) Go. I walked out to the giant instrument in the center of the stage. Music in place... check. I took a seat on the bench, moved my foot above the pedal, and put my fingers in place. I sat there, for what seemed like minutes staring at the music, trying to prepare mentally as best I could. Ok. I think I'm ready. My fingers slowly flowed across the keys. "Word came through in a letter, one of us changing our minds. You won't need to guess who, since I usually do not send letters to me, that are mine. I told him I saw this coming. That I'd practically packed up my things. I was glad at the time, that I said I was fine, but all honesty knows, I wasn't ready no..." Flashback to the dreaded memory in the music building.
"And so, here we go bluebird. Back to the sky, on your own. Oh, let him go bluebird. Ready to fly, you and I, here we go."
This is it. Senior year. Almost done. End with a bang and give it your all. Please put your heart and soul into it... "here we go...
This pair of wings worn and rusted, from too many years by my side. You can carry me, swear to be sturdy and strong, but see turning them on still means goodbye..." The music dramatically picked up in volume and then dropped, as my fingers pounded out the chords and ended in a slow dance.
"And so, here we go, bluebird..." Last time I was up here singing my grandpa was here... "Gather your strength and rise up..." "You have a certain charm."... "Oh let him go bluebird." Just friends. "Oh let him go bluebird!" That's ok... right? "Oh! let him go bluebird..." The piano slowly drifted off as silence claimed the air. "Back to the sky, you and I. Here. We. Go.
Here we go.
Here we go."
The song slowly ended, and the crowd burst into applause. I stared at my music and slowly stood to my feet. Finishing, I took a bow and left the stage. And so, here we go, I guess.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The River


Everyone is broken
And in need of a Saviour
So He came and was broken
For the mocker, for the shamed

Still our eyes are blinded
By the culture, by the lies
We can't see that we're filthy
We're fallen and so dry

But He invites us
Can you hear Him say?
He invites us
Hear Him call your name

Welcome to the river
Come drink, come wade
Come find your very life
Welcome to the river of God
Where your brokenness
Is washed away

Everywhere is the sorrow
And the pain of empty living
You can see it; look in their eyes
All the hopelessness of the world

But look closer, He is right there
In the midst of every fear
Living water is the offer
Restoration is the call

And He invites us
Can you hear Him say?
He invites us
Hear Him call your name

Welcome to the river
Come drink, come wade
Come find your very life
Welcome to the river of God
Where your brokenness
Is washed away

Find your healing
Find your freedom
In the river of God
Your healing here
Your freedom there
In the river of God


-Meredith Andrews

Monday, February 21, 2011

So I put on my clip-ons.


I jumped inside in a scurry, taking off without a single glance back. My freshly painted purple, nail-polish gleamed in the sunlight as my fingers gripped tightly around the steering wheel. I hadn't gotten more than 10 miles down the road when I realized it was a sunny day and I was squinting, of course! sunglasses! So I popped on my shades. What else is missing? I changed the radio station and cranked up the volume. I'll never let you sweep me off my feet. Next time baby I'll be bulletproof, next time baby I'll be bulletproof... The wind flooded in as the gates on the sunroof rolled back. Check that one off my list. I pulled the stretchy band from my hair and let the mass of tangled curls fly wild. A burst of light reflected off the clip-on earrings sitting on my dashboard. I'm going back to school, I can't wear earring at school... It was only a few miles later until the gleam caught my eye again. It's silly to wear them just for 45 minutes while I'm driving in the car by myself... OH! What the heck! So I clipped on my earrings, gleaming in the sunlight and all. Let me assure you, the drive was not complete without my glistening earrings. There's something about them that I can't really describe. They give me a boost of confidence. Like with them on, I am invincible. Nothing can stop me. I am a stable being in the mesh of confusion. I have purpose, something to offer to the world. Freedom! It was really quite a fantastic hour drive I must say. The only thing that could've made it more perfect would be a best friend sitting in the passenger seat next to me, and a Mocha Frappacino from Starbucks.
So when I got back to school I returned the magical earrings back to their home on the dashboard. I rolled up the heavenly sun window from above, tied my hair back in an even messier bun than I had started with, twisted the volume knob down, and turned the ignition off. I opened the door and stepped out from a ceasing dreamland, into a seemingly endless, spiral of life.

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Awakened Mystery

I'm tired of meaninglessness.

Tired of hearing useless words.
Tired of routine.
Tired of the "right" thing to do.
Tired of repetition.
Tired of sitting through classes.
Tired of missing out on events.
Tired of the unimportant.
Tired of seclusion.
Tired of unwanted conversations.
Tired of watching my life waste away.

My soul craves adventure.

In just a few short weeks, I will have broken this cycle with a captivating journey that beckons me...

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Artists, Composers, and Authors


A young man, a musician, a composer actually, examined the painting in front of him. From left to right, to right to left, up and down, down and up, side to side, and again.
"I hate it. It's so bleak and depressing. Who would want to hang this on a wall? This artist should be ashamed. It needs life in it's colors, there is too much gray for one picture to handle."
There is a reason for all the gray. The scene, the colors, the objects inside are all very powerful. Without any one of them, it would not have the same tone, or set the same mood. The artist is an author, creating a story through his painting.
"I don't get it, and I don't like it."
That's fine. Do you like music? Do you like the slow, almost depressing sounds? The dissonance you write in your songs create the same sensation the painting on the wall was made for. As a musician you are an author reflecting the world as you see it. People will listen to your music and catch a glimpse of life through your eyes. Thank you for sharing, but please do not discriminate against the other authors in the world.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

EMBRACE IT!


There's been something going on the last few days. I'm getting really excited. Every once in a while, at the most random times through out the day, these awesome thoughts pop into my head, like a kernal of popcorn bursting forth in a pot. I want to write these thoughts down every time one comes to mind. I usually get them in the morning or at night when I'm in my room and so I can write them on my mirror, but often in the day I get these bursts of spontaneous energy that come with the words planted in my mind, and I eventually forget exactly what it was that got me excited.
I'm becoming rather inspired. I don't know what is making me feel this way, but it's very cool, and working well.
Last night I wrote on my mirror, "Rejoice in the Lord! God is good! His love endures forever!" How great is that?! I was thinking about how much the Lord has blessed me with in life, and how ungrateful I seem. I take all that I have forgranted.
Tonight I wrote on my mirror, "Gratefully embrace life with a passionate heart!" I want zest! Add spice, give me flavor, I like it! I want to embrace every minute of this life.
Some days I just feel, bleh. Like it's just another day, I get days all the time, there's nothing special or different about this one. But on occasion my life is put into perspective. I only have 3 months left of high school. Less than a month till Africa. Senior Rec is next weekend. Time is ticking, and I almost feel left out.
I was planning on skipping the banquet this Sunday and just staying home for my night off. But now I'm rethinking the situation. Maybe I need more hot chile's in this recipe. I need passion, energy, and fire. Bring on the heat. Sunshine, rain on me.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Paper Hearts

Valentines Day. Yuck. Disgusting. Who would even come up with such a holiday?!
Yesterday was Heart Day.
At this school the girls all wear a paper heart around their neck with their name on it and try to keep it the entire day. The rules are: they can't talk to any boys starting as soon as they get a paper heart and walk into the ad building: no texting, e-mails, facebook, chat, skype, nothing, nada, zip, zilch, zero. So yesterday, I thought I remembered this game to be harder last year. Definitely not this year, not a challenge at all. I don't mind just hanging out with my girlfriends. Not one bit. The only thing slightly hard about it was the fact that boys would open doors and I couldn't tell them thanks you. I felt awful, but I really appreciated it. Especially with the extra 10 pounds I have to wear for our pregnancy bible project. Some of them actually made the comment, "Wow, no one ever says thank you around here anymore..." Not sure if they were trying to get me to talk to them or they sincerly felt that way. They were probably pulling my leg. I'm pretty gullable.
Today it was the boys turn.

I didn't even try to steal any hearts. Although I did forget quite often that people were still playing throughout the day and when I would try to talk to them they ignored me. At first I would think Did they not hear me? Or, wow. That was rude. But then it would hit me and I'd just move on.

So where am I going with this story? Still not quite sure. I'd just like to put this out there: I'm not interested in stealing any paper hearts. And if by chance you think this love game is easy, it's gonna take a lot more work than you think to steal this heart.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Hard


Go. Aaaaahhhhh! Faster! Sprint! Focus. Jump. Run. Concentrate. 4 more, 2 shots. So close. Don't give up. Win. Championship. Losers Bracket. Out. Celebrate. Future. Easier. Energy. All the way. Everything. Goal. Prize. Fiesta. Teamwork. Play. Now.

The sweat was dripping off my face and rolling down my neck and back. I was completely soaked, the sweatiest I've ever been in my life, and surprisingly it felt SO good to be dirty and sticky. It's something I can't really explain. Something can definitely be said about giving it your all, playing your heart out, and learning to look up in the process. Indescribibly, incredible.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Good News!

Last night at my Africa meeting they gave us good news! They warned us to be sure and get our malaria pills because they were expecting a down pour of rain almost EVERYDAY!
YES!
This is what I've hoped for.
AND it's going to get down to about 40 degrees everynight! This means no sticky, yucky Karalee trying to get some sleep.
My family parents are two college kids about 2 years older than me... honestly I'm a little scared, but it just means more of an adventure.
And it gets better! On one of our last days I'm going sand boarding! It's seriously just like snowboarding, only on the sand dunes. How rad is that!
I'm stoked if you haven't noticed...

Sunday, February 6, 2011

the best day for a terrorist attack:

I feel as though about 5 hours of my life have been wasted today.
I watched the superbowl.
I use to like to pretend that I was always into the superbowl, and the next day at school I would talk to my friends about it. "Yeah, did you see that gnarly interception! I couldn't believe it!" But today the superbowl made me quite angry. American make a holiday of a football game and sit in front of the TV and gorge themselves with food when they could be out being productive. We had Sunday school, but because it was superbowl we had an early friday schedule and we got done early. As soon as the last bell rang the school was vacated. Students, and even the teachers ran out the doorways and headed to their cars to drive to the best "superbowl party."
Cassie and I walked to the Riffels house, and although the food was excellent that was about the best thing. Pastor Fred skipped most of the commercials, which is the main reason I watch the superbowl, and we listened to about 1 minute of the Black Eyed Peas singing the half time show before we all decided they sucked and we skipped it completely. I'm not a fan of the Packers or the Stealers, so the game wasn't even that interesting to me. Now if the Broncos were playing and it was an intense game that looked like overtime was in their near future, I might have been a little excited.
After the game had finished we re-watched the beginning where Christina Aguilera sang the National Anthem. We had totally missed it the first time but we noticed that instead of singing "Or the ramparts we watched" she sang in mistake, "Oh what so proudly we watched..." the guys in the background looked very confused, and it was quite hilarious to the Riffel family. They thought she was a complete idiot for not knowing her own National Anthem while singing in front of the entire world. Then they made fun of the Black Eyed Peas, and how awful they sounded. But I on the other hand felt rather sympathetic. I imagined what Pastor Fred would look like up on that stage singing... pretty sure he doesn't have the guts to do that, so what gives him the right to make fun of them? I'm pretty sure they were all nervous, and forgetting words is just a side effect. We didn't even notice the first time we watched Christina sing, so I'd say she did a pretty good job of covering for herself. Don't get me wrong, I don't think either group was that great, I'm just saying, they're pretty brave for having the guts to get up there and sound awful.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Yearn

holy design
this place in time
that i might seek and find my God
my God

Lord i want to yearn for You
i want to burn with passion
over You and only You
Lord i want to yearn

Your joy is mine
yet why am i fine
with all my singing and bringing grain
in light of Him

oh You give life and breath
through Him You give all things
in Him we live and move
that's why i sing
-Shane Barnard

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

La Fuente

I learned a new word today in Spanish class, La Fuente, which means Fountain.

As I sat listening to the guitars strum, and voices from the microphone consuming the church tonight, something began to well up. It was unexpected, and overpowering. I could feel the tears forming in my eyes, and how I just wished I could cry it all out. But not there, not then. I pushed it back, but it began again. Please leave me be! were my only thoughts at the time. I stood staring at the screen of words behind the singers up front and pondered every word. I wonder how many people in this church singing this song actually mean what they're saying?
"Broken, I run to You for Your arms are open wide. I am weary but I know Your touch restores my life. So I wait for You, yes I'll wait for You..."
How many times do we just sing because it's what we're "suppose" to do? It's those rare occasions when we actually mean every word, when it really counts. And so the fountain of tears began to well up again, but I never let them spill. I want this fountain to let go of me and run freely so that one day I can experience The Fountain of Life.

Freezin' Season

I walked into my room 30 minutes ago to be greeted by the cold. My window is always open and the fan is always going, and today, the sunshine outside is very decieving. I went and got my smoothie, that was too frozen to eat this morning for breakfast, out of the fridge. I planned on only eating a few bites and then running it downstairs to the freezer in the kitchenette, and saving it for tomorrow's breakfast again, but I got a little carried away and didn't realize just how hungry I was. So I'm sitting there eating my blueberry, raspberry, orange juice, and ice slushy and my teeth are chattering. I don't have a coat on, and my lips are turning blue from the cold. So now not only am I freezing on the outside, everything going down is freezing too! When I'd finished my full cup of smoothie, I went to brush my teeth. The minty after taste makes my teeth sting, and the air gets cold as I suck it into my lungs. I'm thoroughly freezing, wishing for some warm tea or hot vegetable soup. I'm going on 3 weeks now of "fasting" with just listening to "Jesus music", and to add to my list I've decided to fast on just fruits and veggies this week for SWOP, and it seems like I'm always hungry. I think half of this is just the fact that I THINK I'm hungry, I'm not actually hungry. So now I'm sitting here chattering away, struggling to move my fingers in order to type. I have so much homework awaiting me. I know I won't get it all done tonight. Read 3 chapters in a silly book for Bible, then write about them, write a nice lengthy paragraph for Composition, study for origins test tomorrow, review in Civics, make time for God, leave for Choraliers in 3 minutes, pick out an outfit for tonights SWOP meeting, go to basketball practice, come back and work till 11:30, then try to finish homework... I want to feel warm, but I know that if I just stay in this cold for a bit longer, it'll eventually get better. It will all grow numb.