Dispatch from Random Land

No.  I haven't quit.  And thanks for all the encouragement to post.  November only got two posts.  How sad!

Why have I not been posting?  That's a great question.

Is it because I haven't had anything to say?  Perhaps.  If you know me at all, you know that I have actually had much to say, just not the energy to say it.  So, I will post now under headings with condensed versrions of things that I might have said in longer sentences and paragraphs but did not.  For that, children, you can be grateful.

Now, where to begin?...

There has been much discussion about the merits of Xanga lately and whether or not it is a waste.  I believe this to be an example of the apathy that plagues so many of us.  This is just one more thing to care about for awhile and then stop.  At least it's not something vital to life like eating, breathing, or romance.  Plus, I swore to myself that I wrote here for me before anyone else.  Therefore I will try to continue.

I'm a statistic.  One of the holiday depressed though I don't think it has much to do with the holidays.  I've relayed before about my tendency to go balls-to-the-wall and get so consumed with things that I don't see the big picture or the forest for the trees or however you want to say it.  I'm currently trying to step back and examine my life rationally so that I might get a grip on it. 
    Recently I had an imaginary counseling session with myself.  I went to myself for counseling except the counselor me was a middle aged lady with glasses who was a very good listener.  I started the session by telling her (the counselor me) all the things that were wrong with me so that she wouldn't have to diagnose them but could simply move on to treatment (that would hopefully include some drugs; if only I were a psychiatrist).  One of the things I discussed with her was that I have a 156 IQ and am extremely adept at both logical anaylisis and creative artistic expression.  Also, I'm of Irish and English decent.  Therefore, God designed me for inner conflict.  No wonder I go through bouts of being an absolute mess.

Supper Club
The simple answer to why I resigned from my presidency is that the Supper Club outgrew me.  This is no one's fault or responsibility.  Nor should it be looked at as something negative at all.  My time is up and it has become something else, better suited to those who currently participate in it.  Cheers.

I love and value the ones that I have.  I also long for others.  How can you be surrounded by people you like and appreciate and yet still be lonely?

Saw the movie.  Liked it.  Overall, I think it's okay.  It's not great.  Don't lie to yourself.  Some of the bluescreen or greenscreen or whatever looks ridiculous.  I wish Aslan did not make me picture Liam Neeson.  I wish his voice was someone I did not know.  However, I saw it with a theater full of little kids with their parents.  They loved it.  That's encouraging.  Perhaps they'll improve a lot of things before I see Reepicheep come to life.  In the meantime, my imagination provides a much better interpretation than Andrew Adamson.

Christmas Cards
I couldn't take the pressure this year.  Ask Liza.  I basically had a panic attack trying to come up with a Christmas card to top last years.  I couldn't think of anything funny and thought I might make one that actually said something.  Liza vetoed it for good reason. 
    I had a picture of the card here. But I've taken it off for fear of it offending others. It has a beautiful painting of a Madonna and Child on it. However, Liza vetoed it, again for good reason, because in the painting Mary has a bare breast, thought certainly not in a perverse sense. It also featured a Buechner quote. So, I'll just write about the quote later and if you want to see the card you can email me or leave a comment about it.

Christian Community
The Church vs. a church.
    During my years at Mississippi College it was absolutely essential that you attend the BSU (Bapstist Student Union; some of you know it as BSM).  You were nobody if you didn't.  At least you were a pagan or backslider.  I'm pretty sure some of
the leaders of the BSU gave little thought to God on a daily basis but that is neither here nor there.   I was an active and faithful member of the BSU my entire Freshman year.  I found my job at FBC Jackson through BSU.  I performed on the BSU drama team, Cross Section.  I applied to go on summer missions through the BSU (though I didn't because I lost my scholarship and therefore took some classes at the community college during the summer to help my GPA; stupid grades).  When I returned for my sophomore year, our BSU director and asst. director had both left for church jobs. 
The BSU went through an upheaval and had no real leadership and it was frustrating and I was misrepresented and mistreated personally by BSU leadership.  One night during Gathering (that's what we called our weekly meetings) I remember being so fed up and frustrated and distracted that I prayed for God to please calm my spirit and ease my anxieties because if He didn't, I couldn't worship Him at that moment because none of my thoughts were about Him.  I walked out of Gathering and never went back.  I feel like that right now.

Anne Lamott
I'm really into reading about different people's faith journeys.  Anne Lamott's account of hers in Traveling Mercies has become one of my favorite.  It is shocking, reassuring, inspiring, encouraging, agrivating, enraging, pathetic, incredible, reverant, irreverant, immoral, moral, loving, judgemental, liberal, honest, illustrative, sad, joyful, reflective, and hopeful.  Thare are many more adjectives to describe it, but those are a good starting point.

Student Life
Boone rehearsals start Monday.  Tour is coming up.  I haven't hardly thought about camp.  My attitude continues.  I've never loved something so much that drove me as crazy as this does.  I must be smack dab in the middle of God's will for my life.

I'm overweight (in case you couldn't tell) and have given serious thought to developing an eating disorder as a means of dealing with that fact.  Trust me, I don't say that to be funny or glib.  I'm serious, which tells you how ridiculous I can be when I can't sleep
at night.
    I still have a knot in my side that needs to be cut out.  However, I've become rather attached to him.  I've named him Barry.  Our parting will be extremely sorrowful, though will lower the risks of him becoming something threatening.
    I still need a root canal.  I broke off another part of my tooth last night eating chips and Razzy Lime Salsa.  It spiked my fever.  Who knew?

Happy Holidays
This is an inclusive phrase.  Since the holiday season begins now pre-Halloween and runs until after the new year, this phrase seems appropriate.  It includes many holidays, nearly all of which I celebrate.  In fact, though I don't celebrate Channukah, I could.  It's a great story of God's miraculous power and provision for His people.  What a great story to remember and celebrate.  In fact, I think I would celebrate it, except that Christmas is probably an even better example of God's miraculous power and provision for His people.  However, I shouldn't be surprised for a secular society and culture to want to adopt "Happy Holidays" rather than "Merry Christmas."  Even if they do so out of malicious intent.  John records Jesus saying, "If you were of the world, the world would love you as its own; but because you are not of the world, but I chose you out of the world, therefore the world hates you."  My reaction to the world can be combative or can reveal just what is so merry about Christmas.

I miss it.  There.  I said it.

This is where the squirrel went bezerk if you're a Ray Steven's fan.  It is also the hometown of Senator Trent Lott of Mississippi and one of the areas affected by Hurricane Katrina.  A few of us from Student Life went down there this past weekend to help one of our youth ministers, who is actually now an associate pastor, begin getting his house back into some sort of habitable state.  Fourteen total people went from Student Life.  Actually, thirteen, because Amy Harlan went and she'd technically not on the payroll yet.  I wish more would have gone.  This was the plan.  Katrina hit just before our annual staff retreat at the beginning of September when we usually go to the beach.  At that time, I wondered if we should go to the beach.  At least I should go deep sea fishing and should give that money I would spend on that to relief efforts.  But we did go to the beach.  And I did go deep sea fishing.  We helped lead out in establishing a relief station here at the Church at Brook Hills.  I even volunteered there on night and met some incredible people from New Orleans.  But this was different.  I don't say all this to make anyone feel guilty.  I hate that.  I'll admit I didn't even really want to go.  I kept thinking about backing out because of everything that needs to be done here and I hate people making me feel guilty about that.  Like when the group came back from Tanzania last year and made me feel like they thought that I had no understanding that there was poverty in the world because I had not been to Africa.  Screw that.  The point is that this was one guy's story that I got to be a part of for a few days.  These stories are going on all the time.  Not usually on such a large scale with worldwide attentnion like the hurricanes or the tsunami or AIDS in Africa or the shortage of clean water or the conflicts in the Middle East.  But they're everywhere.  Right now.  And I should be doing something about it.  We should be.  To quote Izzy from Grey's Anatomy, "because it's what Jesus would freaking do!"

My List of Things I want to Accomplish During This Next Season
0 for 10 and counting.