Tuesday, May 15, 2007

letting go and leaving them

I wrote this two years ago. It has some recurring themes of earlier posts, but it's interesting to see what's happenend since then.

It’s been one of those days.
The kind of day where, you force yourself to exercise, as though, you’ve forgotten that you actually love to do it.
The kind of day where you listen to Classical music because it contains moods within the songs and you need mood music.
The kind of day where you find yourself with the thoughts of unforgiveness that you’ve given to God long ago.

Earlier today, while doing the dishes, out of nowhere comes this recurring day dream I have dreamt many a time.
It’s that old favourite—the one where I meet some people who I haven’t seen in years and I’m showing off how great I’ve become since they aren’t in my life any more. The day dream leaves me empty and unfulfilled.
Each time, in my day dream, these people are sorry for not having me in their life. I am one of their BIG regrets in life. And I see hope in their eyes. Hope that we will be friends and share the intimacy that friends share. And then, I laugh. I laugh a hard bitter laugh that says, “You had your chance, loser. I’m better off without you and you can live in a pool of shame and regret for all I care…if I cared.”
Dramatic, non?
In reality, I am probably not one of their BIG regrets. In reality, they probably aren’t even aware that I am this deeply hurt by their actions.
To me, they are a memory that is brought out of the closet of my mind similar to when you clean out that one drawer that you’ve been meaning to clean for months. I am not really sure what to do with it, so it goes back into the drawer until another day forces me to try and sort out the stuff in my mental junk drawer.
This day dream always brings up the question “why?” Why did they hurt me? Why don’t they care? Why don’t they have an embarrassing moment on live TV that I happen to catch with my friends, so that I can say “Hey, those are the idiots who hurt me. Sucks to be them.”
Forgiveness is a funny thing. Well, not forgiveness, but just continually making the choice of forgiveneness when these old memories come up. This day dream is obviously not from God. So, what have I been renewing my mind to?
I’ve been reading and re-reading the scriptures about “forgive as we have been forgiven.” It means forgive and let it go. And though the enemy may throw the mental day dream of bitterness back in your face, you have to choose and remind yourself, “Hey, I’ve already dealt with this. I’ve already forgiven this.” And then just trust God to keep your heart soft towards your enemies.
One thing I’ve started doing is praying for those who’ve hurt me-which is always humbling and hurtful because I so desire God to return to His Old Testament ways and have the earth open up and swallow them alive. But, to pray is to change.
As I’m on my knees I once again find myself embracing the Cross closer than before. Even when I feel like I can’t forgive, I can walk in faith that because Jesus forgave me of all sin, I can now forgive those who’ve hurt me. I pray that I will cheer when I hear that they are succeeding and that I will not live my life in the shadow of trying to prove to people that I’m good enough. I pray that the helmet of salvation will help me guard my mind from futile and evil thoughts. And I pray most of all that I will never forget what Jesus did for me-He forgave me.

I love how the Amplified Translation of the Bible says it : ‘For if you forgive people their trespasses (their reckless and willful sins, leaving them, letting them go, and giving up resentment), your Heavenly Father will also forgive you. Matthew 6:14

Today Lord I chose to remain in an attitude of forgiveness. And I pray for unity within the Body of Christ. And I thank you that where I have hurt someone deeply, you have not opened up the ground and swallowed me alive.

Monday, May 14, 2007

we'll always come out on top with God on our side! -Pippi Longstocking

Our girl Pippi knew what she was talking about.

Broken and Spilled out

Broken and Spilled Out

The woman with the alabaster box has always been a story that I've connected with. I'm not sure why. Maybe it's because I hope, no, I believe that if I lived in the day and the hour that she lived in, I would be her. I would come to Jesus with oil that cost so much and I would pour it on Him. The Bible says she broke open the box and washed the Lord's feet with her hair. How intimate-how worshipful. I think about when my hair was long I would wash it with flavoured shampoo so that at night when I would go to sleep, with my hair by my face, I would go to sleep smelling the wonderful smells of wildflowers or exotic fruit shampoo. I think about this woman who washed the smelliest, dirtiest part of Jesus' body with this fragrant perfume-how did her hair smell that evening? Did it smell to her like the picture of her life--smelly and dirty mistakes overwhelmed by the scent of His majesty?
She committed herself to the act of worship when she broke that box. The oil spilled out, never to be recaptured or contained again--it now had the purpose of serving the King of Kings. How I long to live my life this way...broken and spilled out for the purpose of serving the King. I long to never be contained again with the way that I passionately love my Saviour. Never again to be afraid to share His name or His cross. How I long to reach my breaking point to which I can never be recaptured into this box.
What will get me there?
The same thing that has gotten me to where I am now. The choice to just commit my life to Him and give Him all that He asks.
Lord, I commit my life to You. There is nothing You can't have. There is nothing that You ask for that I won't give you. There is nothing that I will withhold from the One I love with my life.
This is the prayer that I pray whenever I want to run from God. I find myself uttering it in my hardest times of worship:
"There is nothing You can't have. There is nothing that You ask for that I won't give you. There is nothing that I will withhold from the One I love with my life."
I decree this over my life as I pray because when I'm afraid of the change that His Word will bring to my life my tendency is to close down and try to hide the things that He asks for. But I don't want to hide from Him.
It's His kindness that leads us to repentance.
Be kind to me today, Lord.

all for the praise of my KING

A year ago this time I was in counseling over my father's death.
When I was eleven, I found my father, at home, dead from a heart attack. I was the only one with him.
It took me fifteen years to be able to really face the depth of sorrow and anger that I had kept bottled up inside. For at least twelve of those years I felt completely fine. I was not aware that there was any remains of sadness or any unresolved feelings. I was completely at peace about everything that happened, until I met my friend Bill Wilson.
Bill was orphaned at age 11. His mother and Him were sitting on a street corner, and she looked at him and said,"Stay here." Then she got lup and walked out of his life. Bill sat there for three days until a Christian man, who had notice him sitting there for three days, got him and paid for him to go to a Christian summer camp. It was at this summer camp that Bill experienced love for the first time. It wasn't through the counselors--most wouldn't talk to him because he smelled. It wasn't through the kids-most wouldn't go near him. He met Jesus Christ at an altar and felt the love of God and felt love for the first time. He now lives his life with the sole purpose of getting as many kids as he can into the presence of God. Every Christmas Eve he goes back to the corner that his mother left him at and he sits there all night long, until Christmas morning. He does this every year so that he can face the new year remembering what it feels like to be a kid that no one loves. And he starts every Christmas morning-the morning that celebrates His saviour's birth-by leaving his past at the curbside and walking towards the future of the next year.
It was three years ago that I sat inside a log cabin on Christmas Eve. I couldn't get Bill off my mind. I prayed for him for a long time and watched the sky thinking of my friend sitting out on the cold curb. I started to cry. How could Bill visit and remain for a whole night the very place that held so much loss and abandonement for him? How could he do it? How could he sit there year after year, when I am unable to even let my mind remember the day my father died.
It was at that moment that I knew God wanted to open a door to my heart that I had denied existed for a very long time. God wanted ownership of my heart--all of it. Even the pieces I was unwilling to admit were real.
It took me two years to warm up to the idea of God healing that area of my heart.
And last year, around this time I was able to let go. I went through counseling at my church (Blaine and Rolanda, I love you!) and as I dealt with each layer of pain God removed major shackles off of me.
A year ago ,this month, someone paid for my family and I to go to Thunder Bay. I had the opportunity to share what God was doing in my heart with many family members. I also paid a visit to a place I had not been in years--my father's grave. It was there that I wept the tears that had been silent for so long. It was there that I said goodbye to the pieces and the memories that I was afraid to let go of.
It was there that I came to understand how Bill could sit and even embrace his previous point of pain. Because, there, under the tall pine tree that towers over the cold, stone grave of my father is where I realized that who I know Jesus to be, and the depth of the love I have encountered has been a result of my deepest wound. Only Jesus can understand a mark so deep. Only He can heal a hole so wide. Only He can bring joy from my darkest place.
He is my light. He is my joy. He is my love.
He is my beloved, and I am His.

Mom, you're the best!

I was unable to post yesterday. So, here it is today!

Happy Mother's Day! I love you, Mom.

My Mom lives far away from me. Last year I was privileged to be with her for Mother's Day. We bought flowers at the greenhouse and had a very poignant and memorable conversation.

If I was with my Mom today this is what I would do:

1. Watch a mystery movie (her fave)

2. Rub her feet with Peppermint Foot Lotion

3.Find a palm tree and sit under it

4.Make all of her salads, Japanese wings,rice pudding and perogy lasagna and eat it with her

5.Get out the Carman tunes and dance the day away

6.Do something to embarrass her in the grocery store--reminiscent of my teenage glory days

7.Buy some drumstick icecream cones and eat it

8.Work on a crossword puzzle together

9.Burn a brush pile and cut down some trees

10.Light some candles and worship the Lord!

I miss you Mom and wish you a day filled with happy wishes and lovely things.

Mom, you're the best! hehehe.

Friday, May 11, 2007

I'm not playing...well, I'm sorta not playing

Amy tagged me. And while I'm supposed to tag back or rather tag forward, it ends here. This tagging thing is dangerously close to email-forwarding , so I have to put my foot down and draw a boundary. It's like the stand I've taken against Facebook. I love blogging, I enjoy youtube and I'm okay with myspace but I just have no more time to devote to the computer. I'm not joining Facebook!
However, in the spirit of being tagged I will still list 7 things about myself.

1. I never learned to read...music that is. I went through 6 years of music class in school and I never learned to read music. I was in the percussion section so I could fake my way through. I memorized all my pieces that had to be played on the glockenspiel (the instrument that required reading music) and I'm sad that I never learned to read music...but I can bang the heck out of a triangle!

2.I broke a bed surfing once. My sister Amy and I had a fetish for watching the Sandra Dee film "Gidget" while we were growing up. In one of the scenes in the movie Gidget learns to surf by placing her surfboard on the bed and having her friend "create waves" by jumping on the bed. When Mom left the house one day, sister Amy and I got out the ironing board and placed it on Amy's bed. We had a great time surfing until I jumped on the bed to make waves, the bed broke and Amy went flying through the air and didn't quite hang ten the way we thought she would.
Our friend Kristy came over to visit us about 20 minutes later after we had fixed the bed. She sat down on it and the bed collapsed. We pulled her leg for about five minutes asking her "What did you do to our bed?" Mom didn't care that we broke the bed. Our punishment was that we had to take turns sleeping on it.

3. I have been at the right place at the right time and met some memorable people as a result of it.When I lived in Southern Ontario, I used to hang out with Avril Lavigne and her family. And while I have lost touch with them, I had a lot of fun with them at the summer camp fishing, swimming in our clothes and having pajama parties. Av was leaving for New York when I was leaving for Alberta. We stayed in touch for a while and the last email I got from her was the day she videotaped her video for "Complicated." And people ask me all the time if she is really the way she portrays herself to the media and the answer is yes. She's the real deal.
From working at the Miracle Channel I have had the opportunity to form friendships with some very amazing people. In particular, the man who ruined my life, Pastor Bill Wilson. www.metroministries.com Bill has been a mentor of mine for the past five years and his friendship means a great deal to me. I get to see him once a year and His love for Jesus Christ and how he lives his faith has had a very profound effect on me. He comes to town every December and I get to be his shadow for a day. Very cool stuff.
I once did a stand up interview with the Prime Minister of Canada (at the time)Paul Martin. I got to ask him if the money that he was giving to the ranchers over the beef crisis was money to buy their votes. I didn't agree with him politically but it's still a very amazing thing to meet the leader of your country.

4. One of my nicknames is Harsh Allie. I have the nickname Harsh Allie because growing up I was known to be very truthful but had very little tact. Now, I hope I have a little more tact although my friend Helena reminds me often that I could use a little more.

5. I love jazz music. Miles Davis anyone? I love Cuban jazz music and the sad thing is I've never been to a club to see anyone play.

6. I had a goodbye virginity party. Before I got married I had a party with my friends in Alberta to celebrate my upcoming nuptials. I also had a friend who was having a breast reduction done. So we combined our fates and threw a Goodbye Boobs and Virginity Party. We had that written on the cake too!

7. The first time I learned to waterski I mooned a boat full of guys. It's true! It was a great Arkansas day and I was having my first chance of at skiing on water. Up I went and so did one half of my bathing suit as we passed a boat full of college guys. To quote the film Ever After, "I should leave walking on water to the Son of God!"

Mama Mia!

I was reading a book today that made me think of Motherhood.
I am reading a book on “Whining”, not for my 21 days of Reformation, but for my daughter Anne. She’s just started to be a bit whiny lately and I’ve needed some outside ammo to help me with the arising dilemma. As my friend Charmaine reminded me a while ago, “Parenting isn’t natural and it isn’t an instinct. Good parenting is a skill and it needs to be learned.” So, I’m learning via this book, and I got some great tips that I could use on myself to stop from whining!
At one part, I read an example of a woman who was at her wit’s end with her child. She started asking herself “why is my child this way?” And the usual suspects showed up: When she was first born you didn’t give her enough attention and now she lashing out at you, or you aren’t aware what her real needs are and she is whining to try and tell you that there is a deeper root than what meets the eye, etc. I read it thinking, “This woman is crazy. These reasons are ridiculous. Wait a minute. This woman is me!”
How many times have I questioned myself or found myself thinking, “I’m going to ruin my child! What have I done that has made my child act this way?” Admit it, Moms, you’ve done it too.
It’s so funny to me that, generally, men feel successful based on what they achieve and women feel successful based on how healthy the relationships are in their life. And doesn’t that describe our self-doubt as mothers? We doubt our parenting abilities when our child aren’t acting the way we think they should or they way they’ve been taught. Immediately, we see ourselves as unsuccessful. And after that, our whole universe goes tilted as our mind spirals down the road of everything else that isn’t perfect in our lives.
I know that I’m going to make mistakes as a parent. I know that I will do and say things that will hurt my child’s heart…I already have. And I take the risk that maybe they won’t understand that my heart motive has never been to hurt them, but only to love them and do the best for them.
I think back to my own childhood and teenage years-anything that I used to equate as “my mother screwed up my life” has now revealed itself to be “She did what she thought was best at the time with the knowledge and the resources she had.” Only age and becoming a parent has made me aware of this.
So, I take the same risk my Mom took. Loving your child, doing the best you can and hoping that sooner rather than later they will realize that the things that you did wrong were mistakes you made with the best of intentions and that the love you have for them will never change.
It’s a crazy thing…being a Mom. Right now, I am successful…barring no whining, no embarrassing incidents or messy catastrophes happen in the next ten minutes!

Monday, May 7, 2007

New label: Jane-Austen-Obsessive-compulsive (dis)order

Youtube does not disappoint!
I was bored the other night. I had the kids in bed and Peter was working a late shift so I had some time on my hands...youtube to the rescue. I found the best thing ever. Ever. My favourite Jane Austen novel is Persuasion. Yes, I love it more than Pride and Prejudice.
Anyway, this past February ITV released a new version of the book and the whole complete show is on YOUTUBE!!!!! AHHHHHHH! I love youtube. I got to see the whole thing on youtube. How I love youtube. I loved it before because it contained the entire film of Ever After on it and I would watch it from time to time whenever I needed some Cinderella pick me ups, but now....wow! Persuasion at my fingertips whenever I want. It is so well done. I love Sally Wright--amazing actress. And the adaptation of the book was spectacular. And that I got to watch it all without renting it--priceless. Literally! I love you, youtube.
I know Jenny is laughing at me right now because she's accused me of being addicted, but after this, who can blame me?

Friday, May 4, 2007

Jenny...let me telllllll you!

This post is dedicated to my girl Jenny.

Jenny just got the position of 2008 Fashion Week Director for STRUT. I am soooo proud of her.

Jenny and I met on the way to a Rebecca St. james concert almost 10 years ago this month. I immediately sensed that God wanted to create a special friendship. I asked the Lord what I could do to make a step forward and He told me to sow into her future. All I had with me was a roll of film. I gave it to her saying that it was a seed of faith sowing into her future and she surprised me by saying, "My dream is to be a photographer." She is so talented and amazing.

Her friendship has been so dear to me. We haven't seen eachother in over 5 years and I think we've talked on the phone twice but we both know that we are eternal friends.

Here's to you, Jenny!

Just for you, watch the sideba video. A perfect blend of my addiction to youtube,your obsession with Extreme Makeover Home Edition and both of our general respect for Kermit.

Love you!

No reservations...oh I have them!

My favourite movie is Mostly Martha (Bella Martha as it's original foreign title is)--it is a foreign film. What I love about foreign films is that they are very un-Hollywood in their storytelling. This particular movie is so simply done with understatement and excellent acting not to mention a great soundtrack. I love the comedy and the romance in this film and how it all unfolds. It is very realistic in a "sometimes life just happens that way" kind of way and it doesn't have this huge philosophical conclusion. Love this film.

Now Hollywood is coming out with it's version called "No Reservations" with Catherine Zeta-Jones and Aaron Eckhart. sigh. I watched the trailer and was immediately saddened--the scenes of CZJ playing Martha showed a tough, control freak trying to figure out why her life is not the way she planned. This is a total misinterpretation of Martha from the German film. Yes, she was a control freak but it wasn't portrayed like this tough "i'm in control woman", instead she wore it like a coat of vulnerability not even aware that it was a problem holding her back. And Aaron Eckhart is no Sergio Castellitto--he just does not hold the same comedic appeal.

Bella Martha should be watched just for the food that is made on that movie. So delicious.

Anyway, that's my rant.

Grrrr Hollywood. Must everything be so happy and pretty all the time? Don't you know that sometimes a story is just a story with no ending that starts in the middle--why must you mess with poetic filmmaking?