24 September 2009

Ramblings on Various and Random Aspects of Life

Soo... I am discovering the joys of being an English major. Namely, papers galore! Right now I have four large papers I'm working on formulating in addition to a short essay due on Monday. I must admit, I love studying for papers and doing the research, but actually writing them is a bit stressful at times!

I just finished writing a research paper on Abigail Adams and am working on another on Harriet Beecher Stowe (or, possibly, Catherine Beecher. However, information on her is harder to come by!)for an advanced American History class I'm in. Additionally, I am beginning to do research on Anne Bradstreet's struggles with doubt as depicted in her poetry for my American Literature I class, trying to formulate a topic for a paper relating to the linguistic history of the English language, and starting to formulate ideas for a large paper comparing Christianity to other world religions for my World Though Class (side note: the topics for just any and all of these major papers could change at any time since they are still in the very early stages). Fortunately, my experiment in time management is going well, and I've had a lot more time for studying this week. Yay! :)

Additionally, I'm getting involved with a couple of Bible studies here on campus. One (the one I've already gone to) is on the Bible and Pop Culture, and in it we're learning how to be discerning and evaluate the culture and entertainment around us from a Biblical World view. So far, it's looking very promising, and I'm very excited about it! The other study is meeting for the first time tonight, and in that one we're going through the book "Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life" by Donald S. Whitney. That one looks like it will be pretty great too, and I'm sure I'll be picking up on all sorts of fascinating things to share with those of you who occasionally read my blog.

I have some other things I'd like to post on soon, things which are a bit more musings and less ramblings, but for now I've got to head to Bible study!

21 September 2009

Life Means So Much

So, lately I've been musing a lot on how to spend my time more wisely. Since coming to school, I've found that my tendency to just kind of piddle away my life (especially in computer related ways) seems to have gotten worse. Afte two nights of being up way too late writing last minute essays combined with the sermon I listened to yesterday about making wise choices with our time. I have decided that something must be done. Action must be taken. Therefore, to attain this end, I wrote out a list yesterday of things that I'm going to give up for the week and things which I am going to purpose to include in my weekly schedule. One of those things is writing at least once, maybe twice a week in this blog. :) Other things include more exercise, Scripture memorization, a more disciplined schedule of Scripture reading and prayer, and a more regular study routine (hopefully resulting in no more 3 a.m. papers!). On a final note, I'm going to leave you with a song by Chris Rice (one of my favourite artists). May you all have a blessed week and spend your time wisely in service to Christ. Remember, He gave His life for us. How will we spend the precious time He's given us?

Life Means So Much - By Chris Rice
Everyday is a journal page
Every man holds a quill and ink
And there’s plenty of room for writing in
All we do and believe and think
So will you compose a curse
Or will today bring the blessings
Fill the page with rhyming verse
Or some random sketchings

Teach us to count the days
Teach us to make the days count
Lead us in better ways
Somehow our souls forgot
Life means so much
Life means so much
Life means so much

Everyday is a bank account
And time is our currency
So no one’s rich, nobody’s poor
We get twenty-four hours each
So how are you gonna spend
Will you invest or squander
Try to get ahead
Or help someone who’s under

Teach us to count the days
Teach us to make the days count
Lead us in better ways
Somehow our souls forgot
Life means so much
Life means so much
Life means so much

Has anybody lived who knew the value of a life?
And don’t you think giving his own
Would prove the worth of yours and mine?

Teach us to count the days
Teach us to make the days count
Lead us in better ways
Somehow our souls forgot
Life means so much
Life means so much
Life means so much

04 September 2009

The Mouse Who Wished to be a Bluebird

This is a fable I composed for a class here at school which several friends expressed interest in seeing. It's not super high quality stuff. It didn't take me long to write, but it's kind of fun. So, for your reading pleasure, here is the story of the mouse who wished to be a bluebird! :)

The Mouse Who Wished to be a Bluebird

A young mouse sat on the sill of an open window staring out at the bluebirds hopping about on the lawn. She admired their beautiful, bright blue plumage, their lovely, curving, graceful wings, and the sweet, musical little chirps they made as they talked to one another. “Why can I not be more like them?” She mused to herself as she turned to catch a glimpse of her own reflection in the mirror behind her. What she saw staring back at her was a pretty little mouse, but it looked nothing like the birds she so badly desired to emulate. “I must be more like a bird! I must!” She thought resolutely as she studied the image before her. “They’re so beautiful, and everyone always admires them. On the other hand, no one ever pays me any attention at all.”
With a new determination she turned back to the window and studied the little creatures hopping about on the lawn before her. What could she do to make herself more like them? First, she concluded, she would need to be blue. There was some blue paint in the study; she had seen it there the day before. So, she quickly scampered down to the floor and across the room to the study where sat a small can of blue paint with which the lady of the house had been painting her garden bench. Without a second thought the little mouse dove into the can of paint (which was about as tall as she was herself). She came up spluttering, and, after several failed attempts, finally managed to pull herself out of the can, dripping with bright blue paint. She then scampered out the open patio doors and into the garden to admire her new, blue reflection in the pool and to allow the paint to dry.
As she hurried along the path, she realized that her movement did not resemble those of the birds either. The birds did not scamper, they gracefully hopped from place to place on only two feet with their heads up, shoulders back, and chest out. Therefore, the little mouse determined she would imitate this posture. Standing up on her back legs she attempted to lean forward and hop, imitating the shape and motion of the birds on the front lawn. Her small body, however, was not built to balance in such a position, and she went tumbling head over heels onto the gravel walkway, mixing dirt and small rocks into the still wet paint coating her fur. She was, nevertheless, resolute to imitate her idols and continued to mimic their movements as closely as possible as she moved across the yard, collecting ever more debris in addition to various small scrapes and bruises from her many falls. Finally, she made it to the still, small pool which was her destination and looked in. As she did, tears welled up in her eyes. Rather than the smooth, blue coat which she had so hoped to achieve, the paint was drying in little clumps throughout her fur, and the initial bright blue color had been much muted by the dirt and rocks it had acquired in her falls. Her stance, meant to evoke that of the blue birds in the front yard, simply looked silly, and her little limbs ached from the awkward position and the many falls resulting from it. As she buried her face in her hands and began to sob she heard a kind voice behind her.
“Why, whatever happened to you, my dear? And why are you crying?”
Surprised, the little mouse turned to see a chipmunk (a good friend of her mother’s) standing behind her. With a bit more coaxing, she had soon poured out her sad little story to the creature (although the relation was a bit interrupted but the occasional sob). As she finished, the chipmunk wrapped her in a tight embrace and kissed the top of her small, paint-matted head. “You silly little goose,” she said gently, “Why would you ever want to be like a bird? They can neither see in the dark nor sneak into the pantry at night to enjoy a tasty bite of cheese. They have no sense of smell and cannot hold anything in those useless little feet of theirs. Just think of all the things you can do that they cannot. Wash that paint off of yourself and take another look at that fine, warm velvety coat of yours. You are truly beautiful just the way you are.”
With the chipmunk’s help the little mouse did just that, and when they were finished she looked at her reflection in the pool and realized the chipmunk was right. She was beautiful just the way she was, and, suddenly, she had a terrible craving for cheese…

Moral: Like so many young people, girls especially, in our society today the little mouse does not realize how beautiful and how special she is just the way she is. Like them, she wishes to be something she is not, something she never can be. For the little mouse, this something is a bird, but for girls of today it is the airbrushed supermodels they see staring back at them from magazine covers or the digitally altered actresses they see on their television screens. Perhaps they, like the mouse, just need a loving friend to remind them that they are beautiful just the way they are, that a healthy, content person is a beautiful person whether they be a size two or a size twenty.

03 September 2009

I Want to be Moved

I love Ginny Owens. I love her sound and her style, but most of all I love her lyrics. I feel that she is so honest in what she writes, and much of it resonates with me at different points in my life. Today, I was listening to some of her music when I came upon this song which seemed to strike a chord in my life. Don't we all have those days where our feelings for Christ seem to be dead and gone, our passion feels cold, but the cry of our hearts is to be on fire for Him, serving him with an all-consuming passion? I know that I do, and this song just seems to put my feelings into words:
This road is winding, narrow and steep
And I can't keep walking with frozen feet,
My spirit is not willing;
My heart is cold as ice;
Thaw out my convictions;
The passion's left my life

I don't wanna be a flame
I wanna be a raging fire!
Tired of my will, my way,
Your calling's higher
Oh, I know it's time I stopped running from the Truth
So I'll stand here still, until I'm filled
I wanna be moved
I wanna be moved by You

Wanna be a rebel with a Holy cause,
Stand against the Devil and hold up my cross,
You have a mission for me; a reason why I'm here,
To radiate Your glory, with sweet songs to Your ears