Tuesday, October 14, 2008

story seed

You look up through the pouring rain at a pickup's tail lights disappearing behind trees and a bend in the road. Your knees and the heels of your palms sting from your rough acquaintance with the black top moments ago. Your dry clothes already are becoming soaked. You curse under the noise of the wind and rain. "Lemming Poo!" (go ahead and say it) You catch a chill as you wipe the droplets from your wristwatch and check the time: 1am. Three hours until even the earliest commuter will be on the road. . . .

You look behind you. More trees. You look up. Skinny and bare, the white trees stand out against a charcoal sky. It's been raining for long enough that the trees are dripping as much as the clouds. The drops are fewer, but larger. No shelter here. "LEMMING POO!!!" You shake your fist at the sky as you howl your curse at the moon. (go ahead, do it) But you know deep down that you can only blame yourself.

You reach for your wallet. Gone. You shove your hands in your front pockets. Empty. You look up to see the trees at the bend in the road lighting up. A car is coming. But who is it? Do you run and hide or do you try to get their attention?

Sunday, October 12, 2008


you know how every website and their mom wants a security question with some piece of secret personal information. well, a lot of these websites are not important to me, so a long time ago I stopped giving them accurate information. i try to make stuff up, because i think that someone somewhere is building a book about me.

My goal is that when someone goes to steal my identity and they open up this imaginary book that the find, proudly displayed on page 15, that my mother's maiden name is Lemming-Poo. Imagine the look on the teller's face when they try to get into my account with THAT one. he he he...

The bride of Christ

For a long time I never really liked Mother Teresa. (am I going to hell for that?) I didn't. I guess I just thought she wasn't sincere, like she was trying to win some international popularity contest and everyone voted for her because she would touch lepers. She didn't seem normal and I couldn't relate to her. The idea that Mother Teresa was a "good person" was just too cliche to really be true.

I just finished a book about her and I can't tell you how moving it has been to realize I was wrong. Mother Teresa was a strong mystic. She longed to have encounters with Jesus. And yet she lived for decades (the majority of her life) without feeling his presence. From the letters she wrote it is clear the pain this caused her--the loneliness she felt. She tried to quench Jesus' thirst--the thirst he felt as he hung on the cross--by giving herself entirely to Him. And yet she almost always felt that he did not come to her and love her the way she so fiercely wanted to be loved.

Eventually she came to believe that this seeming rejection by Jesus was a way she could better relate to Christ's death on the cross and separation from God's love. By reliving the crucifixion she could carry maybe some ounces of Christ's pain for him.

She actually thought and spoke of herself as Christ's little spouse. He was her daily companion, her deep lover. She wanted to be married to Jesus. And she vowed never to refuse Jesus anything he asked of her.

Living out that vow and in the process discovering what it meant wasn't easy, but her faithfulness blows me away. I'll never think of her as cliche again.

But what troubled me throughout the book was the same thing I think she struggled with. She was clearly faithful, but God didn't seem faithful to her. At least, I don't understand His faithfulness. And I'm pretty sure she didn't either.

But somehow in her death I think you can see Jesus was faithful. She was old and had been near death several times. She was more and more excited as she neared her death because she knew it would be a reunion with her long distant lover.

One night she was in the Mother House--a house she had established where the sick and dying of Calcutta could die loved and with dignity--when rather suddenly she complained of back pain. Soon she was having difficulty breathing. Not to sit idly by and be the ones who let Mother Teresa die before their eyes (imagine the ridicule you might get for that...) the sisters there were ready. They brought in a doctor and a priest, a breathing machine and two independent sources of electricity. As they were about to hook up the machine, there was a city-wide power failure and Mother Teresa slowly faded away in the dark.

Though she probably could have been "saved" (in human terms) if there hadn't been a universal power outage, I think Jesus called her back into his arms. I can't imagine that kind of reunion, but I get chills thinking of how powerful Jesus' faithfulness to her felt in that moment. How in the midst of lightless night in Calcutta, God brought his light bearer to the masses back into his bright presence.

It makes me realize a little more how suffering is a part of every person's--and every believer's--experience. There are times and seasons--sometimes years and decades--where God doesn't seem faithful. I think those times are very important times in our lives. I don't understand it, but in someways I wonder if that's the point.

The book was:
Come, Be My Light.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

Burger or Gormet Experience?

Howdy. I will add more description in a moment with help from live feedback sources. Sam P. @ 6:36Pm.

Hey, it's me again. 6:42Pm. No bun, twin stacked patties, eating with fork. There is a sauce on top along with caramelized onions in a red wine reduction with, I believe, a chicken broth base. As I eat, I find a creamy bleu cheese sauce between the patties. I simultaneously have the photo I've posted described as "a bloody clam with leeches all over it."

6:48Pm "Pearl of Great Burger" according to live feedback sources. The blue cheese is seen in the following photo. Burger is beginning to cool. Perhaps it is time for a reheat. A Note on the Beer: I like it. It has to my un trained pallette, a malty hoppy taste, smooth, but I think for the full experience I should have poured it rather than take it from the bottle.

6:52Pm. The beer "looks like a heinz 57 bottle". I hear "Pearl of Great Burgers" sounds better. I haven't talked about the tomatoes yet. "Are they pretty sweet?" I don't know if they're sweet. They're a little sweet, but they have a juicy tang, OK? They're not all red - some yellow, some green. I feel they really complete the taste circle. You've heard of complete proteins? When I get some meat, some cheese, some onion, and some tomato I get a complete taste. Its good.7:00Pm Clean Plate Club! Woo Hoo! Now that was fine meal. Beer's still on though! I'll let you know any other interesting morsels I can sink my teeth into...

Special Thanks to luke healy - virtual taste tester and visual food critic. Couldn't have done it with out you...

And for dessert Agave Wheat from Breckenridge Brewery. Sweeter than the last... and as cloudy a beer as I've seen in a long time--felt like i was drinking mulled cider or clover honey. Brewed with real agave nectar--the stuff of mezcal. Cool label.