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Posts Tagged ‘writing for a revelation’

Americans are making life into one big deadline:
-If you aren’t married by this certain age, you will probably be single forever.
-If you don’t have a kid by this certain age you are too old to be a parent
-If you don’t have a job or a college degree by this certain age you are going to scrubbing kitchen floors or shoveling horse dung off the state fair streets for the rest of your days.

It is exhausting finally being able to finish a project and then turn around to get a cup of coffee and be thrown three more. Americans are becoming so time-oriented, that the quality and value of things are definitely not what they could be.

I’d like to buy a shirt or sweatshirt that doesn’t have a hem threatening to rip on me a couple weeks after I buy it. I’d like to work on a short story and not have my professor poking me in my back asking if I’m done yet. I’d like to be able to sit out on a park bench today and read a new fiction book that I just bought and be able to put off my homework till tomorrow.

But I can’t. Time is precious, yes. But nerves can be as fragile as the tick of the clock. By trying to make so many deadlines all the time, we aren’t able to let ourselves enjoy the present, for we are always trying to make sure we are caught up with the future deadlines. No human is patient forever.

Time is important, but so is sleep. There are only so many days that I can stay up till 1am doing homework and wake up at 7 for a morning class. I have felt terrible lately because I’ve had friends that want to spend time with me, but my excuse has been homework.

Time is a luxury, but so is living. What is the point of living a long life if you’re rushing through it? We NEED give ourselves the time to reflect, to observe, to ENJOY.

Americans live by the “Quantity over Quality” standard. We live by the “Timing is everything” standard.

I think Americans need to sort out their priorities.

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I was flipping through facebook pictures of a classmate we lost 2 and a half years ago and couldn’t help thinking back to the last time I had seen her before she died, her funeral.

I remember the line of people at her wake that stretched out the church doors and down the gravel road. The sobs that grew like a coming car as new people stepped in front of her casket, needing to look away, yet not wanting to. 

Fresh notes tack onto her Facebook wall every now and then when a memory is sparked in the mind of a friend. Words of fun and laughter, always ending with an “I miss you.”

I didn’t know her well, and even I am trying to hold back tears. She was so loved by everyone. And that was because she loved everyone. She was only 20, but she affected more people around her than many ever do in a lifetime.

It made me think—when I die, what message am I leaving? Who would I be remembered as? Am I pointing people in the direction of love as much as I am in the direction of God? Will I be remembered as the optimistic one who was there for others, or the pessimistic one who complained?

As this world gets worse, I want to strive to be someone who gives people hope, makes people laugh, reminds them how much I care. I want to leave a legacy. Strive in your own life to leave behind the memory of someone who cared. 

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Stuff happens. Buildings fall. Sometimes those buildings have people in it. Sometimes one of those people is you.

But other buildings are bound to fall. And who better to steer people clear of the falling buildings than you who experienced the fall?

Sometimes things happen to us in life so that we can prepare someone else. I think God just knows you are strong enough to handle it. And what strength He must see.

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I am going to write this now, in case I somehow receive a ton of money and become selfishly absorbed. As of this moment, I plan on making sure I don’t let myself make money or things a priority in my life. I don’t think we ever really intend to in the first place, but as we become absorbed with cell phones, we find that we want to spend money on the best and brightest. Ipods, laptops, sound systems, TVs, houses, cars, RVs, furniture,dogs, flowers, food, fridges, ovens, paintings, yada yada, yap yap. The list is endless with which you can be picky, spendy, greedy, stupid. There are shops full of stuff to buy that is pointless. You buy it because it’s funny, and then all of a sudden you have a box full of crap that you don’t even know what to do with. I’m afraid of becoming a hoarder, so if I buy less stuff, that is less likely to happen.

Now don’t get me wrong–things age and need to be replaced. I’m just saying buy what’s wise, not necessarily what’s hip and cool. One of my friends is a Coupon Queen, and that is a smart way to go if you give a little time and organization. 

But why I’m writing this, is because when I get older and have a family, I don’t know what my financial situation is going to be. I don’t know where I’ll be working, where I’ll be living, and I could either be just getting by or rolling in the big bucks. All I know, is that I don’t want to let it change me. Money is a material that can either be a tree in your mind or a dust bunny.

Think about it, we all have money trees. You go to work, make your money, give it back to the community when buying food for your family, donating to a cancer cause,  just to make it back to spend it again. A tree grows leaves, but can’t grow them back again until they are let go and given to the ground. 

But then some are hoarders of their money, dust bunnies. You may spend it, but it is things on yourself, and it keeps piling up either in your bank account or in your house. You may play in the stock market or casino, but what you win you bet again at the casino to get more.

It never gets better, because it blinds you into an obsession. Once you get more, you think you can get even more than that if you made it that far. It is just paper that can burn, plastic cards that can melt, yet these thin, material things swallow us whole. Once you’re in, it’s hard to pull yourself back out. 

If you feel the tug, take your Mom out and buy her lunch instead of letting her pay for you. Mow someone’s yard or babysit for free. When buying gas, surprise someone by buying theirs as well, or when in the drive-thru line, pay for the person behind you. These little acts of kindness not only bring a joy to your own heart, but they free you from the grip of money. You only need so much, the rest is just because you want it. Put some away in a savings account for college if you want, but don’t wrap yourself up in stuff. You don’t need to be at the casino every other day.

My parents never bought me video games because they didn’t want me spending all my time inside on them. I had Barbies and used my imagination and brought them to life. i ran around in fresh air and got muscle from helping my dad feed cows. I got my tan not from a tanning bed but from mowing the lawn and picking up hay bales from the field by hand. I learned patience from fishing with my dad and to work for what I want by getting a job instead of my parents paying for me.

Don’t let yourself or your kids get wrapped up in material things. There is a ton to do that doesn’t involve electronics. Teach yourself how to play the guitar because music is good for the soul. Pick up a pencil and try drawing a picture, even if you think you suck. No one has to see it but you. Go for a run in the fresh air or plant a vegetable garden so you don’t have to buy as much at the store. Get an old notebook and write a song or a poem. Turn off the TV and read a book. You use your imagination more when reading a book than watching what is shown to you on a screen. Go to a park and play fetch with your dog.

And remember this: If you don’t give now, what makes you think you’ll give later?

Live through life, not through money. 

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Satan has a temper.
He is the tempter
he can make a grown man cry,
can make a fake saint cut flesh like an apple slicer.
Satan knows your weakness
he knows the thing that will tear you to pieces
if you feed sin like steak to a dog.
You can bury the bones but they just get dug up
by the very ones you were trying to hide them from.

It’s always the secretary.
Those little looks and chocolates left on the desk.
He puts his hand on her back, and lets her walk ahead.
They go out for coffee to talk about work
and talk about everything but work.
Still he drives home to, “Daddy, look what I made in school today.“
“Hello, dear. How was your day.”
“Great,” he says.

The road is narrow, like an alley in a movie
that makes you yell at the screen.
“Are you crazy, or just stupid,” you say.
“Someone is bound to be down that way.”

And there he waits
wearing shadows like a cape.

But what if you were a karate master.
Ain’t scared of nobody, nohow,
“Stop hiding like a coward and face your prey.
I’ll take you on any day.
Not so tough when I don’t see it coming, are you?
be gone,” you will say
“In the name of Jesus, get the hell out of my way.”

And Satan turns from thunder
to the crumbler.
From the devour to the coward.

The supernatural comes alive
in that moment of faith
when nothing nowhere
will ever destroy God’s grace for you.

Your body will grow tired,
your hands a wrinkled mess,
but after this life, this moment in time
you’ll never look back, never say remember when
because this is nothing, nothing
compared to what waits ahead. 

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I’ve really been working on my self-confidence the past few months. Surrounded by pretty girls all the time can make anyone feel self-conscious, especially when the majority of them are skinny and go for runs everyday while I sit my lazy butt on the couch and read a book. It would probably help if I didn’t eat seven pieces of pizza the other day, and I could have probably skipped the hot chocolate and chocolate Easter eggs that I had tonight, but then when I look at the older people I know, they would probably gain weight from lettuce. My metabolism may not be as high as others, but it’s definitely better now than it will be when I’m thirty. 

I have an unhealthy love for chocolate, I’ll admit it, but maybe because chocolate is the laces to my shoe. Maybe it becomes the Tequila to my margarita and pretends to be all sweet and innocent until it starts blowing up my love handles like balloon animals. But then I look in the mirror and say, “Hey, ya still got a pretty face. Wear a tshirt today and no one will even notice.” 

I live in the country, and when I’m hanging out with people I love simply being in jeans and a baseball cap, yet nowadays I hope for more hours at work just so I can go shopping for more clothes. We are never satisfied with what we have. Even when I have lost a couple pounds off my hips, I feel I still need to be skinnier. When we get money we wish for more money. It is an exhausting, never-ending cycle of wants instead of needs and complainers who like to bitch about things just so they can find someone who feels sorry for them. 

Honey, I don’t care how much you weigh. I don’t give a rats ass if you have a pimple on your forehead, crooked teeth, weird toenails, or the fact that you may need to pluck your eyebrows. 

And yes, there will be other people who care, but you know who has to live with it? You and only you. Maybe a husband or wife once you get that far, but if something small like that is going to break your relationship, then that’s pretty pathetic. 

I have a couple curves that probably don’t need to be there. I wish I had gotten braces when I was younger so I could have a nicer smile and or that I could find the will to stop chewing my nails so I can wear fingernail polish again, but when I get up in the morning, I don’t necessarily always feel beautiful, but I’m comfortable enough with myself to be okay with it. 

There will always be someone who doesn’t like you. There will always be someone prettier, smarter, funnier, nicer, taller, skinnier, and so on and so forth. If you can find satisfaction with yourself, then simply give a smile to the rest of the world, even if you decide to walk out in sweatpants for the day. If you don’t mind, they don’t matter. 

I don’t need to know who you are to tell you that you have something beautiful about yourself. The more you put-down yourself, the easier it is for you to let others put you down. Confidence itself can be beautiful when it’s not taken over the top. Start there, and you’ll find what makes you beautiful.

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You know what sucks? When everyone is against you about something until you succeed…

For example: My grandma’s house and property has been in the family for 12 generations. On this property we have an old barn, the kind with two levels. My dad decides we should fix up the barn and host family gatherings in it since my grandma’s house is getting too small for a family of 65 people with more babies on the way.

Some of my dad’s brothers and sisters thought it would be a waste of money, a waste of time, and probably wouldn’t be worth everything that would be put into it in the end. Even after their complaining, my dad convinced my grandma that we should do it anyway.

After months of buying paint for the outside of the barn, putting in hardwood for the second level, putting new concrete in the bottom level, building a deck to lead up to the second level, putting in a couple fans, putting in new windows, making a bar counter out of a couple old wagon wheels we painted up….we now have a beautiful barn that we have family gatherings in. But now it has also been a success for weddings, ceremonies, receptions, high school reunions, and also a place that other families have wanted to have a family reunion.

After everything that went into the barn, we will soon be making a profit off of it. Now my dad’s siblings boast about the barn, telling everyone how nice it is, all the work that went into it…when some of those people barely ever helped at all.

Some ideas are too big for people to wrap their heads around. No one likes taking risks anymore, especially with money. Yes, a lot of money had to go into the barn to get it to where we wanted it to go. But now months down the line, everyone is in love with it. And all because a couple of people were confident enough to fix up the barn and do what no one else wanted to.

There will be times when people will have faith in your ideas and will follow through with you every step of the way. But there will also be times where you won’t be backed up by  anyone. Sometimes you have to carry out your ideas alone, or at least with very little help. But this does not mean that you shouldn’t do it. The things we want to accomplish in life won’t come with a grain of salt. You will have to risk your money, your time…But won’t it be worth it in the end?

Our barn is beautiful, and no one thought it would turn out as nice as it is. We found some connections with people we knew to get some items cheaper. We got just enough helpers to finish the job, though they were longer hours than what would have been if more people showed up to help. The beginning will be rough, parts of the middle may be rougher, but carry out your ideas, because you may not be fully aware of the awesomeness the final project brings until you start.

Sometimes, some of our ideas aren’t the best and probably shouldn’t be carried out. But I guess that is where you begin to learn what will be worth it and what won’t. Take some risks. Nothing worth having or getting will ever be simple.

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