12:23 AM

A Tribute to My Awesome Father

taylor swift has a precious song on her new album about her father that my brother pointed out pretty well describes our dad, who is not only the greatest earthly father i know of, but also happens to be one of my best friends in the world. i have been listening to this song almost as much as i've been listening to the aforeposted "abide with me."

i wanted to share it with you. (it's been hard for me to think of stuff to say here, in case you hadn't noticed, but i have been wracking up the lyrics, so maybe that will help my brain get going with more original stuff to say.)
The Best Day

i'm five years old, it's getting cold,
i've got my big coat on.
i hear your laugh and look up smiling at you.
i run and run past
the pumpkin patch and the tractor rides -
look now! the sky is gold!
i hug your legs and fall asleep on the way home.

i don't know why all the trees change in the fall.
but i know you're not scared of anything at all.
don't know if snow white's house is near or far away,
but i know i had the best day with you today.

i'm thirteen now and don't know how my friends
could be so mean.
i come home crying and you hold me tight
and grab the keys.
and we drive and drive until we find a town
far enough away,
and we talk and window-shop till i've forgotten
all their names.

i don't know who i'm gonna talk to now at school.
but i know i'm laughing on the car ride home with you.
don't know how long it's gonna take to feel okay,
but i know i had the best day with you today.

i have an excellent father;
his strength is making me stronger.
God smiles on my little brother -
inside and out, he's better than i am.
i grew up in a pretty house and i had space to run
and i had the best days with you.

there is a video i found from back
when i was three:
you set up a paint set in the kitchen and you're
talking to me.
it's the age of princesses and pirate ships
and the seven dwarves.
my daddy's smart and you're the prettiest lady
in the whole wide world.

now i know why all the trees change in the fall.
i know you were on my side even when i was wrong.
and i love you for giving me your eyes, staying back and watching me shine,
and i didn't know if you knew, so i'm taking this time to say
that i had the best day with you today.

11:05 PM

Abide with Me

abide with me; fast falls the eventide
the darkness deepens - Lord, with me abide.
when other helpers fail and comforts flee,
Help of the helpless, abide with me.

Thou on my head in early youth did smile,
and though rebellious and perverse meanwhile,
Thou hast not left me, though i oft left Thee.
on to the close, Lord, abide with me.

i need Thy presence every passing hour;
what, but Thy grace, can foil the tempter's pow'r?
who like Thyself my guide and stay can be?
through cloud and sunshine, abide with me.

i fear no foe with Thee at hand to bless;
ills have no weight; tears lose their bitterness.
where is thy sting, death? where, grave, thy victory?
i triumph still; abide with me.

hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes,
shine through the gloom and point me to the skies;
as morning breaks and earthly shadows flee,
in life and death, Lord, abide with me.
this song is my new obsession. it is definitely going to play at my funeral (hopefully like 70 years from now hehe). a delightful version is on the altogether excellent album recently put out by the kevin twit and the RUF folks at Belmont, wake Thy slumbering children.

4:06 PM

It Would Seem That...

I come across as perky, happy, and full of energy most of the time. Sunday night the topic came up at Life Group in my half of girls (we split up to share prayer requests and pray), and then today the lady at the dry cleaners said, "Are you always this perky and happy?" I said, "Usually."

How weird. I never realized I came off that way, except when I would go visit one of my favorite college profs at office hours - he could only handle about 15 minutes of me, but he liked me a lot. As great as he is, he's not someone whose opinion about people I ever really relied on.... he's kinda odd in a hermit-ish sort of way. Absolutely brilliant, a fabulous lecturer, and really invested in the lives of his students, but not the sort of man you'd guess would be the last of those.

Now I just need to figure out what to do with my newfound power. Hehehe...

12:52 AM

I love America

and this video reminded me of one of the many reasons why.

big props to democracy and intelligent conversation/debate.

1:55 AM

Fascinating Fact

turns out that if the Iraqis could vote for our next President, they'd vote McCain.

1:12 AM

Add to the Beauty

thanks to the AMJ tour i was finally introduced to the wonderful sara groves. some artists, i find, you just have to get acquainted with live before you get all ramped up about their stuff. sara seems to be one of those for me. but wow - and i mean WOW - am i ramped up about her stuff now.

great lines include:
+ "redemption comes in strange places, small spaces
calling out the best of who we are" ("add to the beauty")
+ "i see the young girl huddled on the brothel floor
i see the man with a passion come and kickin' down that door" ("when the saints" - ahem, GO IJM)

i love music. i especially love music that resets my affections to be more like God's affections.

12:22 AM

Food for Thought in Light of the Looming Election

"Thus says the LORD of hosts, the God of Israel, to all the exiles whom I have sent into exile from Jerusalem to Babylon: 'Build houses and live in them; plant gardens and eat their produce. Take wives and have sons and daughters; take wives for your sons, and give your daughters in marriage, that they may bear sons and daughters; multiply there, and do not decrease. But seek the welfare of the city where I have sent you into exile, and pray to the LORD on its behalf, for in its welfare you will find your welfare." ~ Jeremiah 29:4-7

9:49 PM

Spread the Wealth

if you're bill gates, "spread the wealth" is generous.

if you're wanting to be the president, "spread the wealth" is communist.

6:51 PM


so. i am a bad poster. bad bad bad. but the truth is, most of the things that happen in my days these days are not the sort of thing i post, either because they aren't that interesting to read about (like i asked a question in class and other people had been wondering about that too and were glad i asked) or are rather personal in an "i'm not telling everyone in the world about this" sort of way. you know?

my sister did come last week, which was fun, and this weekend my roommate from college/cousin by marriage is coming. it's not like my life isn't interesting, more that it's got enough in it that tons of extraneous thoughts aren't looming, and personal enough that i'm not wanting to blog about it all the time.

but i haven't forgotten you, faithful readers. in fact, i have a little something to tell you about.

it's called fringe, and it's my new love. a brainchild of the great jj abrams, fringe is a delightfully weird combination of x-files and alias, but with a mildly crazy scientist. it is a thing of wit and beauty. just sayin'.

6:10 PM

Wonderful Grace of Jesus

wonderful grace of Jesus, greater than all my sin [and that's saying something!]
how shall my tongue describe it? where shall it's praise begin?
taking away my burden, setting my spirit free
for the wonderful grace of Jesus reaches!

wonderful the matchless grace of Jesus (the matchless grace of Jesus)
deeper than the mighty rolling sea (the rolling sea)
wonderful grace all-sufficient for me (higher than the mountain, sparkling like a fountain all-sufficient grace for me, for even me)
broader than the scope of my transgressions (sing it!)
greater far than all my sin and shame (my sin and shame)
oh, magnify the precious Name of Jesus
praise His Name!

wonderful grace of Jesus, reaching to all the lost,
by it i have been pardoned, saved to the uttermost.
chains have been torn asunder, giving me liberty,
for the wonderful grace of Jesus reaches me!


wonderful grace of Jesus, reaching the most defiled,
by its transforming power making him God's dear child,
purchasing peace and heaven for all eternity,
for the wonderful grace of Jesus reaches me!

mysteriously got this one stuck in my head today - we learned it in elementary school, but i think it's been at least 12 years since i've heard it. what a great hymn, though!!

12:41 AM

The Heroes Season Premiere

was fabulous. i gotta say i love it when shows demonstrate the complexity of human nature. and, let's face it, there is no true "hero" except Jesus. at least these characters are portrayed as being flawed.

7:46 PM

Never Forget!

2:31 PM

Bon Jovi & Politics

when i run, i usually listen to music, and the other day after palin was chosen to be mccain's running mate, "you give love a bad name" came on my ipod shuffle. i was struck by its appropriateness. if they have a presidential race 2008 karaoke night, obama should so sing it to palin.

i'm particularly thinking of lines like "you're a loaded gun, there's nowhere to run, no one can save me, the damage is done."

obama is going down - taken out by a mom with a sharp tongue and a sharper mind.

1:42 AM

Random Celebrity Post

before we get back to politics (which will probably be a pretty big feature on this blog in coming months), i want to post this thing i ripped out of US Weekly last fall to post and never did. i just thought it was interesting and kinda cool:

"Marsden's Fairy-Tale Marriage
"He may play a fair-tale prince in Disney's Enchanted, but is hunky actor James Marsden a real-life romantic? 'My wife [actress Lisa Linde] thinks I'm romantic if I get up with the crying baby and let her sleep in,' says Marsen, 34, who has two children, Jack, 6, and Mary, 2, with LInde. Fair enough. But what about over-the-top romance? 'Early on in the relationship, there was lots of serenading on the beach and things like that,' he says. 'But once you have kids... romance could be filling her car up with gas or making her coffee.'"

heck, i think that's romantic and i'm no mother.

4:59 PM

10 Reasons Sarah Palin Is a Genius Choice for VP

When I heard McCain introducing Sarah Palin on the radio today, I cried. I had no idea that it would be such a big deal to me to have a woman chosen by my beloved GOP, but apparently it was. I am so proud of women like Palin and Condoleeza Rice - women who have pulled off femininity and feminism at the same time.

I know I will think of more reasons later, but this is a good start. And there's no particular order to these.

1. Sarah Palin didn't wind up in politics because of a carefully-lived resume. She makes me think of Esther and all that "for such a time as this" language. Not that it's bad to wind up in politics on purpose from the getgo, but that it means she doesn't think like Washington-fashioned politicians.

2. Palin comes to us from a working class background, and was a hockey mom and basketball coach before she was in politics at all. She understands firsthand the interests and concerns of many, many Americans.

3. Palin is spunky, bold, and eloquent - if you haven't heard/seen her acceptance speech from this morning, GO DO IT.

4. Palin knows the oil business and the people in it. She's dedicated to American energy independence.

5. Palin is young, smart, and ready for a challenge - which I'm sure is much of the reason that McCain has chosen her to run with him. He wants to nurture his successor, and I think he couldn't have chosen better.

6. Palin is a mother.
6a. She is the mother of a soldier. Talk about someone who will have our troops in mind when she makes decisions!
6b. She is the mother of a child with Down Syndrome. I personally feel that a person like her has a lot of valuable, weighty things to say about abortion, embryonic stem cell research, etc.
6c. She is the mother of five, which usually seems to mean a person is hopeful about the world.

7. Palin is a woman, and she's not afraid of it. She wore a skirt today. She's proud of and respectful toward her husband. She brags about being a "hockey mom." I'm a big fan of politicians being comfortable with who they are and acting from that, instead of constantly attempting to compensate for what they are not.

8. Palin roots out bad stuff where she finds it, despite party politics or other such things. We need people of notable integrity in public office, and she's got it.

9. Palin is prolife, progun, profamily, protroops, and proAmerica. And she's anti gay marriage. To name a few notable issues.

10. Palin is a hunter, a fisher, and an athelete. She seems like a real person. Rather shockingly real.

8:45 PM


i run faster to "Remember the Name" by Fort Minor than normal songs. yay nba!

i'm taking pastoral counseling, history of philosophy and christian thought (virtually), isaiah-malachi, and systematics I.

so i am swamped.

but being well ROCKS.

and i discovered i like riesling wine.

and expensive maple syrup isn't worth the extra dough....

11:45 AM

Ooh, the WCF Makes Me Weak in the Knees...

from Chapter 19.6 of The Westminster Confession of Faith:
"Although true believers be not under the law, as a covenant of works, to be thereby justified or condemned; yet is it of great use to them, as well as to others; i that, as a rule of life informing them of the will of God, and their duty, it directs, and binds them to walk accordingly; discovering also the sinful pollutions of their nature, hearts and lives; so as, examining themselves thereby, they may come to further conviction of, humiliation for, and hatred against sin; together with a clearer sight of the need they have of Christ, and the perfection of His obedience."

10:12 PM

If It Gets Any Sweeter Than This...

... I don't want to know.

Actually I do, but this is pretty dang sweet.

Have fun, my friends.

4:17 AM

The Dark Knight

if you weren't planning on seeing it, i probably wouldn't encourage you. and if you hate explosions, can't handle diagrams of the human body, or break out in hives if not every loose end is tied up perfectly (remember, heath ledger died before they could finish filming all the scenes that they'd planned, although they do a decent wrap-up if you consider that), maybe you should avoid it. it is certainly not for the faint of heart.

that said, it was AWESOME. as far as i know, the best comic book movie ever made - and i have professional comic book peeps who concur. the acting is fabulous, the visuals are fabulous, the dialogue is great. you get a number of opportunities to laugh. and, most dear to my heart of all these things, justice and goodness and self sacrifice are the victors. i loved it, to be quite simple. loved it loved it loved it.

then again, batman is my favorite superhero anyway. but that's another post.

2:18 PM

Andrew Peterson Baccalaureate Address

yay the Gospel. (how's that for an understatement?)

ps i'm pretty sure i spelled baccalaureate wrong. and i don't care.

9:48 PM

Well Hello There

sorry i've been so silent. the health problems drama has gotten, well, more dramatic, and i just haven't had many thoughts. this kind of pain numbs my brain apparently.

other big news:

~ i tried on a pair of manolo blahniks, and i can see why people find them so comfortable and awesome, but shoes that run $440 ON SALE seem a little extreme to me.
~ went to branson, mo, with the 'rents to get my sister from K1, where she'd been a counselor - and we saw some amazing shows, including The Promise, which was a musical about the life of Christ that remarkably avoided cheesiness for the most part. the guy who played Jesus was fantastic.
~ Get Smart was stupid. fun, but stupid.
~ i am reading Gone with the Wind for the first time. i really like it, but i'm appalled at the way black people are discussed. i'd really love to hear a black person's opinion on the subject, particularly one descended from slaves. i'll google it probably after finish this post.
~ i love I Kings.

2:10 AM


i've been writing tons of letters lately - i have a stack sitting next to me of eleven completed epistles, most just in need of a stamp and trip to the mail box. i have always been a note-writer - several times in middle and high school i wrote letters to every single girl in the school - but now that i'm sick and my brain doesn't work very well on things (like the class i'm working on virtually), letter-writing is one of the few things i still feel capable to do. i am anxious to get back to normal, but as it stands, writing letters is a profitable diversion. i've been reading an incredibly ridiculous amount, as i believe i have mentioned before, but letter-writing is more externally focused, which is good. and you know, it's always nice when you get a letter in the mail instead of bills or credit card offers - i'm just making sure it happens more often. :)

not that i don't love me some email.

12:36 AM

Three Thoughts of the Day

#1 Independence Day is a silly film.
#2 I stink at chess.
#3 John Frame is a really great lecturer.

1:39 AM

The Morning from the Bad Place

you would think that waking up at like 11 would preclude this sort of thing, but apparently a lot of things can go wrong in about an hour (and a half, if we're getting technical, but more on that later).

so my madre walks into my room literally 15 seconds after i grab my current fun-book, the reason for God by tim keller off the marble-top table acting as my nightstand. i had just woken up from a dream in which my dad yelled at me a lot. you have to understand two things 1) my dad doesn't yell in real life; and 2) i have really vivid dreams, and even though a lot of times they are completely ridiculous, sometimes they affect my mood, a la this morning.

so after a quick debriefing on the day, mom heads downstairs, calling back up that i need to phone the urologist in charlotte again because they still haven't gotten back to me on a urodynamic exam they ran three weeks ago. so i grab my phone, text my brother (he's at church camp in florida), and call the doc. i leave a message. i'm not feeling too badly today (on a pain scale of 0-10, 0 being zero pain, 10 being the worst pain i've ever felt, which was really horrible and i screamed and my roommate could hear me from the waiting room, i started at about a 3). text from the brother about the stingray that he almost stepped on. so far, it's annoying that the doc hasn't called back, but not killer.

i'm checking my email. lo and behold, my roommate up in charlotte had called (that explains the 6 missed calls last night), and she wrote me a facebook message to tell me that my voicemail wasn't working anymore and asking if i had changed phones. hmm. so i hop over to the at&t wireless website and start looking around for stuff about voicemail problems - what do you do when your voicemail up and disappears? but mom was like, 'we have to go,' so i said i'd deal with it later.

oh, i almost forgot, i've had mail forwarding set up, but nothing came and nothing came and we were starting to think maybe the doc had sent me the results from the exam in the mail and we hadn't gotten them. so i pull out the confirmation letter i got here in dallas, and i give them a call before we head out the door. they give me the phone number for the post office that delivers my mail in charlotte. when mom says it's time to roll, i grab that sheet with the number on it and head for the door.

only i couldn't find my purse. it wasn't that big of a deal in the long-run - it hadn't been stolen, and we knew that from the getgo, but we really couldn't figure out where it was. i gave up and we headed to lunch with dad, who was checking his car to see if my purse was in the back (it wasn't). awesome.

i call the p.0. people in north carolina. their server isn't working, so it takes quite a while to figure out if i'm in the system, if they know who i am, if anything's wrong. the guy asks for my old address, new address, and phone number, and i tell him that, of course, if they call me back while i'm at the doctor's office this afternoon, i won't answer, and i have no voicemail. but they figure things out before we hang up, so that's one less phone call i have to worry about missing. now we're just worried about the urologist's office calling.

so we pull into a parking spot at our restaurant of choice, and dad beat us there, so he called to tell us he beat us, and then he must have slipped his phone into his pocket and then bumped it, because he's standing in the parking lot waving at us with both extremely long arms (remember, he's 6'11"), and my phone is ringing and it says "daddy" is calling. so i answer, hop out of the car, walk over to him, and hand him the phone. "here," i say. "talk to yourself." (this happens a lot. i hear snatches of meetings regularly.) he grabs the phone, says "hello?" and then laughs and closes the phone, handing it back to me. i slip it into my pocket and we get inside and seated and all that.

dad wants to know if we've heard from the bug. both of us have, so mom starts talking about the sting ray while i pull out my phone to refresh my memory about which kids he's been hanging out with so far. i flip open the phone and.... houston, we have a problem.

it's an appearance of what i like to call the black screen of death.
"Boot Loader
blah blah blah
blah blah blah
some random numbers
number that would be time if it wasn't so large

OK to Program
Connect USB
Data Cable"

this has happened before. normally i just turn it off and back on again and we're golden.

oh no, ladies and gentlemen, not this time. this time it's dead.

not that i didn't try to resuscitate the darn thing. i think it was probably after attempt number 15 or 20 that i called it quits and gave up. so now there is NO way for the doctor to leave a message, NO way for her to reach me anyway, NO way for me to tell her - after all, all my doctor contact phone numbers were in the stupid phone - and i'm not eligible for a new phone until october. i mean, this was getting ridiculous. i turned to mom and said, "hey, at least i have something to blog about."

{fyi, mom figured out a plan that will hopefully work, and i managed to pass my bad luck on to dad for the rest of the day. [the work day ended with him locking his keys in his office...]}

1:28 AM

of the last, say, 30 times songs have gotten stuck in my head...

probably 25 times it's been this commercial or this one.

that's some good marketing.

now instead of looking fly and rolling phat
my legs are sticking to the vinyl
and my posse's getting laughed at
F-R-E-E that spells free
credit report dot com baby

8:04 PM

The Bug

the bug turns 16 in july, and while he will be driving mom's old suburban for a while, his goal is to get an audi a-4. he is seriously in love with this car. so much so, that dad said tonight at dinner, "i'm afraid, when kj sees a real a-4, like one he can sit in, he'll lick it or something."

11:13 PM

Memorial Day

last night at 11:30, a dear friend went to be with the Lord Jesus. clem mueller, a beloved member of our church here in dallas, a man of great character and wisdom, family practice physician, father of eight (his eldest daughter mentored me through high school), grandfather of 6 (including one in-utero), and best-friend and husband of one woman for almost 34 years, will be sorely missed. he went to be with the Lord after a hard fight with pancreatic cancer.

praise our gracious God, dr. mueller is now more alive than we are.

12:50 AM

Top Ten Books I Was Surprised to Love

these books are books i read for class or fun, books i really didn't know that i would be sucked into, would fall in love with, would lose myself in, would even in some cases be changed by. so here you go. i'm not really sure why the list is ordered this way, but it made sense.

10. love, rosie - a modern epistolary novel, this fluffy piece of chick lit is the traditional story of love derailed by circumstances... and eventually remedied, through no disloyalty of the main characters. a little bit like jane eyre in its heart.
9. running with scissors - ok, so skip the sex scenes - it's quite easy to see them coming - and this book is hilarious, shocking, tragic, fascinating, and brilliant. dry, a memoir about overcoming alcoholism, was much better, but by then i was hooked on augusten burroughs, so it came as no surprise.
8. the lord of the flies - really quite excellent book about sin nature run amock. think LOST but with little boys, and no enemies but each other.
7. the constant princess - this very compassionate reading of katherine of aragon captivated me. i love how philippa gregory tends to root what she writes in history, and this book did a great job of explaining the facts in a way that really made you rethink the whole story, because it's possible that katherine's story really did unfold this way.
6. the opposite of fate - this memoir by amy tan really brought out my inner-writer. having read most of tan's work, it was really interesting to learn about her personal life and her relationship with her remarkable mother, who has clearly shaped quite a bit about her books. i loved it.
5. the historian - this is a novel about dracula. i mean, what are the odds that i would go for that? to make matters more unlikely, it's by a dracula expert - and over 650 pages. boy was i surprised. it was AWESOME.
4. the thirteenth tale - ok, so there's some weird twin psychology, but never have i been so shocked by a book's ending. the twist caused my jaw to hit the floor - for two days at least, my mouth hung open most of the time after i finished the book. it's a traditional gothic novel, but with a unique structure. ok, maybe not unique, but structurally very woman in white while being more in the spirit of wuthering heights. an absolute blast.
3. mama day - i used to wonder what married people fought about. now i know. that sounds awful, but it's really wonderful. kinda like this book. yay for sacrificial love being chosen by selfish people.
2. the harry potter series - i read the first book when i was working at barnes & noble in the kids' section, largely to see it for myself and make up my mind about recommending it or not, but also to see what the hype is about. i guess it really took until the next february for me to really get hooked (book 3 did it for me, and right after my car accident, you might remember), and i loved them so much i went to one of those crazy book release parties last summer. so that's pretty surprising.
1. the time traveler's wife - this book was remarkably good. i cried like a baby. there were a few r-rated scenes, so read with caution, but it's powerful, beautiful, and good - changed the way i think of myself as a single woman who hopes to get married, as a part of the church that the Lord Jesus died for and is coming back for, and as a person who loves novels. they are really powerful things.

in other news, i am reading wendy shalit's latest - girls gone mild: young women reclaim self-respect and find it's not be to be good, which will be released in paperback this summer under the title the good girls' revolution: young rebels with self-esteem and high standards. it is FABULOUS. anyone who knows women or girls should read it. i'm serious.

10:52 PM

Two Lists for Book Lovers

i love books. i read voraciously, to an almost sickening degree (strike the almost if you're my sister). so i have decided to compile a couple of lists about books. tomorrow i'll post a more positive list.

the first list is of books i hate. in order for me to hate a book, something serious has to have happened. i mean, we aren't talking mere about disliking or being disturbed. i rarely really hate books. it makes them special. these are listed in terms of how virulent my hatred is, not the books' own merits. incidentally, several of these i haven't finished because i got worked up too quickly and strongly.

Top Ten Books I Hate
10. hatchet - i was highly disturbed by the ruminations of a preteen on suicide. couldn't handle it.
9. the emperor's children - just not that interesting. just enough literary proficiency to make me read the whole thing, just enough sin and disordered relationships to frustrate the heck out of me, just enough of a waste to make me like "grr" about the whole thing. especially since it was supposed to be the greatest novel of the new century according to somebody i will no longer be listening to.... if i can remember who it was.
8. the awakening - i hate to break it to you feminists who believe it, but freedom is not about escaping the responsibilities of family. it's not about escaping responsibilities period. the selfishness - claiming to speak for women - of this book really ticked me off.
7. choosing God's best - who wants to be patronized, talked down to, and lectured on romantic relationships with questionable theology? this is your book.
6. the camel club - i would hope that there would be SOME level of literary prowess in an author who has consistently made the NYT bestseller list.... but this book suggests otherwise. it's painful - full of sentences like, "not only was macon surprised to see his mother, but the sky was full of dark clouds." i made that one up, but it reflects a common sentence structure baldacci loves to use. and the plot sucks, too.
5. lipstick jungle - started reading it. stopped after page like 12 and threw it in the trash - too much sex. in the first 12 pages. not a good sign.
4. the master and margarita - this book is probably not at fault, but i read it for a class in college which was taught by a professor who totally creeped us out, especially regarding this book (jokes about the magic lotion - or "goddess cream" - that makes you gorgeous and enables you to fly were REALLY over the top). this is a case of guilt by association.
3. corregidora - the obsession of this book with the ugliness of the protagonists' genealogical heritage - a grandfather (and also great-grandfather - same guy) who was a slave-owning monster is overwhelmingly grotesque. the sexual violence, the serious dysfunction were really disturbing. and there really is no hope, because there is no exit from the cycle of dysfunction.
2. codex - the entire time i was reading this book, i was thinking "this is just completely ridiculous." i kept thinking there had to be more going on - there had to be more going on, but there wasn't. the secret of this codex was in some easter egg in a video game. and the darkness of the narrative form, which is something i generally enjoy, was weird. i actually threw the book when i finished it.
1. lolita - that same class from #4 required this book. 60 pages was enough for me - i begged off on moral reasons (and was told to read this fabulous other book, called we). nabokov is undoubtedly a genius, and lolita is undoubtedly a very important book. but sometimes i think burying your head in the sand is ok, and i for one don't need detailed descriptions of pedophilia floating around in my head.

12:39 AM

Sometimes She's Crazy...

...but sometimes she's dead on.

this is one of those times.

long live ann coulter!

11:57 PM

Barlow Girl - On My Own

can't believe that i'm here in this place again
how did i manage to mess up one more time?
this pattern seems to be the story of my life
should have learned this lesson by the thousandth time

cause i promised myself i wouldn't fall
and here i've fallen
i guess i'm not as strong as i thought
all i can do
is cry to You

oh, God, You have to save me
You're my last and only hope
all my right answers fail me
i can't seem to make it on my own

always thought that i could be strong enough
what made all of them fall couldn't take me down
why did i think that i was above it all?
i have learned that pride comes before the fall

i can't promise myself that i won't fall
cause here i've fallen
i know i'm not as strong as i thought
all i can do
is cry to You

oh, God, You have to save me
You're my last and only hope
all my right answers fail me
i can't seem to make it on my own


yeah. that would be me.

6:39 PM

Shut Up and Drive

i will be doing quite a bit of the second (and we all know i'm probably incapable of the first) for the next couple of days. mom is here to take me back to dallas, so it's ROADTRIP TIME! in all likelihood, she will be doing an inordinate amount of driving, as i'm due for some bad days. but i'm glad i'm going out on a high note, at least.

my stomach hurts.

see you in texas!

11:49 PM

Background on the Westminster Assembly

this article is fantastic and to the point.

"I want to close with a story to illustrate the practical value of knowing Presbyterian doctrine. The story comes from B. B. Warfield (1851-1921), the great Princeton theologian. It concerns a Christian man who traveled West during the days of the pioneers. One day he found himself in the middle of a gunfight in a wild western town. The whole town was in an uproar, but he saw one man who - despite all the commotion - remained calm, cool, and collected. The traveler was so amazed that he said to himself, 'Now there is a man who knows his theology.' At this he walked up to him and asked the first question of the Shorter Catechism, 'What is the chief end of man?' The man answered correctly, 'Man's chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy Him forever.' On the basis of Warfield's story, I commend to you the Westminster Catechisms and Confession of Faith as a theology suitable for every situation in life."

8:02 PM

Top Ten Actresses I Might Watch a Movie For

you know what i mean - there are actresses and actors you like enough to seriously consider seeing anything they're in... not that i don't have my limits (slasher films/horror/tons of skin) - i don't see all their films, but i'm more likely to. here are my top 10 such chicks, living and dead. the reasons differ from woman to woman - sometimes it's more about the performance; other times it's more about what kind of films they choose to do.

10. anne hathaway
9. kate hudson
8. gwyneth paltrow
7. michelle pfieffer
6. cate blanchett
5. angelina jolie
4. reese witherspoon
3. audrey hepburn
2. grace kelly
1. jennifer garner

who are some of yours?

10:32 PM

Wisdom for the Day

[i didn't say this; it's practically a direct quote from a friend in my life group.]

"my kids ask for the world because they know they are loved. we will ask God for huge things if we really know He loves us."

i needed to hear that tonight. badly.

10:03 PM

I just had to laugh...

see more politics and fun!

9:51 PM

Great Cheesy Lines

don't you love them? the best one i've heard in the last 24 hours goes to "if you want to live, don't leave my side." oh val kilmer. you kill me.

1:21 AM

Fact of the Day

this is an excellent episode of law and order svu.

9:58 PM

Top Ten Television Shows Currently in Production

i noticed camille paglia has top ten lists (top ten works of art, top ten sculptures, top ten movie lines, etc.), and they are cool, so i thought i would start doing the same on occasion. of course, i'm not nearly as brilliant as camille paglia, but i'm also not as wrong as her on a number of thing that matter (like theology), and that has to count for something.

10. the Office. it takes some getting used to the humor if it isn't quite your style, but it's fun to quote with friends any time.

9. CSI. yay for the forensics! seriously, though, i way prefer the original to either of the spinoffs.

8. Law & Order. i love how relevant a lot of the cases are, and how generally evenhanded they are (maybe excepting religion).

7. Ugly Betty. fashion, humor, awkward romance, ridiculous drama, and some salt-of-the-earth characters. what more could you ask for?

6. Law & Order: SVU. the on-screen chemistry between Detectives Stabler and Benson is fantastic, the cases are raw, and the law is fascinating. i love it.

5. Bones. i watch this gem after the latest season comes out, episode after episode. i can't handle waiting between episodes. the chemistry between Bones and Booth is palpable, and it's physical, emotional, professional, personal - almost every level is electrifying. i love it. and the forensic science is SO interesting. i'm sure a good bit of it is totally unrealistic, but it's fantastic.

4. House, MD. i love house because he says and does things that no one could get away with really. it's like a fairy tale for sarcastic people.

3. How I Met Your Mother. LEGEN-wait for it-DARY. hilarious. not exactly the most moral of these shows, but it probably has the best dialogue-writers of any of them. and the concept is great - a father telling his children in 20+ years how he met their mother - and how he became the man he was when he met her. brilliant. the cast is great, and they are FUNNY.

2. Heroes. everyday superheroes. epic battle between good and evil. surprises at every turn. need i say more?

1. LOST. ok, so i definitely am attached to this show partly because it's a JJ Abrams brainchild, and so was Alias, which is only the best television show in history. the twists, the backstory, the reveals, the drama, the weirdness of it all - i love it.

10:44 PM

John Owen

my paper was called "Will the Real John Owen Please Stand Up? A Preparation to Read Owen's Works." if you really want to read the whole thing, which is like 13 pages long, let me know and i'll email it to you. in the meantime, i'll give you a few snippets you may not have known about the great puritan theologian.

fact #1) owen was married twice, first to mary for 31 years, then a year and a half after she died, to dorothy (who was widowed as well) for 8.

fact #2) mary bore john 11 children. only one of them survived to adulthood, and she too died before owen. that's an average of one child dying every three years throughout his adulthood.

fact #3) neither of his wives and none of his children are mentioned in any of his published works, and as far as i could find out, they aren't mentioned in any of his surviving letters. in fact, the only family member he does mention is his father, and only in a sentence.

fact #4) owen was a calvinist before he was a christian.

fact #5) owen was, in turn, a country preacher, a tutor, a private family chaplain, a military chaplain, dean and then vice chancellor at oxford college christ church, where he was responsible for the worship services, and a city pastor. and the whole time he was writing book after book. he also regularly preached before parliament, and his favorite sermon topic on these occasions was religious tolerance within orthodoxy.

fact #6) owen was tight with oliver cromwell.

fact #7) owen drives biographers and historians crazy because of the paucity of info on him.

8:03 PM

Home Again, Home Again, Giggity Gig

so i'm headed back to dallas for the summer to be tested and studied and do physical therapy and all the funness of diagnostic medicine. i'm glad to be able to be home with my family - and be taken care of on bad days. :)

last night i had a sleep study done. it was not fun. i don't like those. hopefully they got what they needed and i never have to do that again.

i finished my paper on john owen. tomorrow i will post some stuff about him, but i will warn you - we know very little about him, oddly enough.

10:02 PM

2001: A Space Odyssey

is stupid.

and the disc didn't work long enough for me to change my mind.

on the upside, bacardi frozen daquiri mixes are awesomely easy.

11:11 PM

Newfound Bliss

did you know that frozen grapes are amazingly wonderful?

the surgery didn't turn up anything they expected. there are still more mysteries to be explored.

of the last 7 days, i've had 4 bad ones and 3 good ones. that's a much more satisfactory ratio than i am accustomed to. hopefully that means the new medicine they gave me after the surgery is helping.

9:30 PM


i have surgery tomorrow. i've been having pretty significant health problems for about the last couple months, and hopefully what they're doing tomorrow will tell them what the heck is wrong with me. we can all hope and pray anyway.

i should be pretty narc'd up after this - they are putting me on heaps and loads of pills - so don't be expecting to hear from me for a few days.

it's gonna be an early morning - we are leaving the house just after 6. it's been ages since i saw that side of six on purpose (i also have sleeping problems, which a different set of doctors will hopefully figure out in the next couple of weeks.)

leave me fun things to read. :)

12:16 AM


so i have been reading voraciously lately; novel after novel has been plowed through in my reading frenzy. and it has given me no little extra satisfaction to switch books from the "currently reading" shelf to the "read" shelf on goodreads, which just might be my new favorite thing. so i thought i'd share.

ps i'm writing on john owen.

11:22 PM

Random Pictures

somewhere in podunksville, north carolina.... what were they thinking?

this was the worst rental car ever.... no power windows, no power locks, no power anything. we had to propel it with our feet, fred flinstone style.

stay away from the patriot!

me and my siblings (the bug and katie) out to dinner on easter weekend

my new chair that i am pretty much in love with.

1:10 AM

Google Games

type " *your name* needs"

first 15 hits:

1. lauren needs attention [maybe should be changed to "wants"]
2. lauren needs attention.... revisited [yes, i need THAT much attention]
3. lauren needs to kick the crack habit [just so long as i can keep the book habit, i'm fine]
4. lauren needs a hotel room [...]
5. lauren needs a myspace [ugh. i have one but i have 2 friends and i only use it to look at people's pictures. facebook is where it's at.]
6. lauren needs to do the same [i don't know about that]
7. lauren needs new friends! [i'll take more, gladly, but i'm quite happy with the ones i've got!]
8. lauren needs a winterball date? [that sounds fun. dress shopping!!]
9. lauren needs to be involved in more stories on the show* [heck yes! more screen time for me!]
10. lauren is an idiot!/lauren needs to work on her self esteem [i'm getting mixed signals from that one.]
11. jack, sharon, mikey and lauren need to go on vacation [not with strangers i don't]
12. lauren needs to learn how to forgive [shocker]
13. why does lauren need someone with her when she is outdoors?/lauren needs constant assurance that we will not leave her alone... [um... i don't want to make jokes. this sounds serious.]
14. lauren needs to post about something completely unpredictable [i'll wager this counts]
15. lauren needs protection after being shot by a deranged fan [if my fans ever get that deranged, i'll let you know]

now you play.

*in case you hadn't noticed/guessed, most of these are about The Hills. or Gossip Girl.

12:39 AM

A Thought

i was reading exodus 37 just now, which is all about the construction and crafting of the ark of the covenant, and i realized how totally different judaism was from all the religions around it in the ancient world. while other peoples are creating these statues and carvings, from wood and stone and precious materials like gold and so forth, both large and small, to represent their divinities and give them a special connection to them, Bezalel is over here crafting this amazingly detailed, fairly large item out of expensive materials. and what is this item? it's not something to be esteemed or bowed to, but the place that blood is poured. it is an altar, a place of sacrifice and atonement. instead of sculptures and figurines to link the divine to the human, the israelites were provided with a way to have a true, solid, and constant connection to the LORD God - the blood poured on the altar - ultimately, the blood of Christ.

i just thought that was cool. i hope it made sense - i haven't been very coherent, especially on deep things, lately.

{I hope it's not presumptuous to tag this "reformed theology"....}

11:43 PM

Time for a Poll

so i have to write a biography paper on somebody, and i'm trying to decide between the following individuals. anybody have any preferences on this list? note that i am planning to post about the winning fellow on here, so you will benefit (if you read it at least) from the final selection.

if you'd rather not comment, you can always email me.

John a Lasco (he just sounds cool. wikipedia him here.)
Philip Melanchthon (for obvious reasons)
Richard Baxter (wrote the reformed pastor, which is apparently the definitive work on pastoring)
John Owen (freaking brilliant - i love the death of death in the death of Christ)
Thomas Cranmer (i like the book of common prayer)

11:29 PM

Quotes from the Augsburg Confession (1530)

Written by Philip Melanchthon, Luther's right-hand man, the Augsburg Confession was basically a last ditch effort to reunite the Reformation movement with Rome. Perhaps if you read the cited passages below, you will see why it didn't work.

I think it's interesting that Melanchthon is considered a "liberal" Reformer.

On Original Sin: "[...A]ll men are full of evil lust and inclinations from their mothers' wombs and are unable by nature to have true fear of God and true faith in God. Moreover, this inborn sickness and hereditary sin is truly sin and condemns to the eternal wrath of God all those who are not born again through baptism and the Holy Spirit." Doctrine of total depravity, anyone?

On Justification: "[...W]e receive forgiveness of sin and become righteous before God by grace, for Christ's sake, through faith, when we believe that Christ suffered for us and that for his sake our sin is forgiven and righteousness and eternal life are given to us." Go here, thanks to him.

On the New Obedience: "It is also taught among us that such faith should produce good fruits and good works and that we must do all such good works as God has commanded, but we should do them for God's sake and not place our trust in them as if thereby to merit favor before God." Just because something isn't necessary for our salvation doesn't make it irrelevant. (We talked about this a heap in my ethics class last summer.)

On Repentance: "Properly speaking, true repentance is nothing else than to have contrition and sorrow, or terror, on account of sin, and yet at the same time to believe the gospel and absolution (namely, that sin has been forgiven and grace has been obtained through Christ), and this faith will comfort the heart and again set it at rest." You can't have one without the other. Believe me, I've tried.

On the Use of the Sacraments: "It is taught among us that the sacraments were instituted not only to be signs by which people might be identified outwardly as Christians, but that they are signs and testimonies of God's will toward us for the purpose of awakening and strengthening our faith." Yay sacraments!!!

On Faith and Good Works: "[Our opponents] do not teach now that we become righteous before God by our works alone, but they add faith in Christ and say that faith and works make us righteous before God. This teaching may offer a little more comfort than the teaching that we are to rely solely on our works." Haha! A little more, perhaps, but certainly not much. At all.

[Emphases mine.]

1:26 AM


i am now one of those girls who wears sensible shades of toenail polish.

i think i'm getting old.

11:59 PM

Fantastic Line from How I Met Your Mother

Ted: Dude, do not pretend you're not the kind of guy who keeps a list of all the girls he's slept with.

Marshall: I have one. It's called my marriage license.

9:55 PM


"For Luther, as for the reformers in general, one could rest assured of one's salvation. Salvation was grounded upon the faithfulness of God to his promises of mercy; to fail to have confidence in salvation was, in effect, to doubt the confidence in God, untroubled by doubt. Faith is not the same as certainty, although the theological foundation of Christian faith may be secure, the human perception of and commitment to this foundation may waver."
(Alister E. McGrath, Historical Theology: An Introduction to the History of Christian Thought, 194)

Hear ye, hear ye: feelings lie sometimes.

2:32 AM

This is so my life...

HT: xkcd.com

12:54 AM

A Joke for You

Several men are in the locker room of a golf club. A cell phone on a bench rings and a man engages the hands-free speaker function and begins to talk. Everyone else in the room stops to listen.

MAN: "Hello"
WOMAN: "Honey, it's me. Are you at the club?"
MAN: "Yes"
WOMAN: "I'm at the mall now and found this beautiful leather coat. It's
only $1,000. Is it OK if I buy it?"
MAN: "Sure, go ahead if you like it that much."

WOMAN: "I also stopped by the Mercedes dealership and saw the new 2007
models. I saw one I really liked."
MAN: "How much?"
WOMAN: "$80,000."
MAN: "OK, but for that price I want it with all the options."

WOMAN: "Great! Oh, and one more thing. The house we wanted last year is back on the market. They're asking $950,000."
MAN: "Well, then go ahead and give them an offer, but just offer $900,000."
WOMAN: "OK. I'll see you later! I love you!"
MAN: "Bye, I love you, too."

The man hangs up. The other men in the locker room are looking at him in astonishment. Then he smiles and asks: "Anyone know whose phone this is???!!!"

HT: cleanjoke.com

2:19 AM

hilarious quote from "the perfect man"

construction worker: hey, you're a jets fan, right?
gay restaurant manager guy: oh my gosh, i LIVE for west side story.

11:34 PM

Retraction: Luther NOT to Be "Rehabilitated"

go here

7:37 PM

Holy Moley....

have y'all heard about this????

i am really amazed. this guy's commentary is interesting and helpful, but i think i would have preferred it if more weight had been given to how much of a miracle this is - it's a really good thing a sizey step in the right direction.

12:34 AM

Brills, Yo

there's a lot more where that came from...

11:12 PM

Oscar Dresses

sadly and atypically bad this year, or just boring. there have been a number of great skirts on the bottom of awful bodices....

so far, my favorites are cameron diaz's dress (although it looks like it's not the right size for her), anne hathaway's dress, hillary swank's dress, cate blanchett's dress (yay pregnancy!), laura linney's dress, kelly preston (although most people could never pull this color off), helen mirren's dress, and jennifer garner's dress. i would link to them directly, but since i'm having trouble copy-pasting urls into the link thing, i'll do this:

cameron diaz: http://fabsugar.com/1069663
anne hathaway: http://fabsugar.com/gallery/233903/?page=0,0,0&show=large
hillary swank: http://fabsugar.com/1069712
cate blanchett: http://fabsugar.com/1069896
laura linney: http://fabsugar.com/1069493
kelly preston: http://fabsugar.com/1069522
helen mirren: http://fabsugar.com/gallery/233930/?page=0,5,0&show=large
jennifer garner: http://fabsugar.com/1069632

props to ellen page and jennifer hudson for cleavage-less dresses. and jessica alba looked adorable except for the fur, which was dreadful.

too bad juno didn't win more stuff.


12:18 AM


so a couple weeks ago when i went to visit my sister, i saw some typical south carolina fare:

the South Carolina peach, which my best friend and i lovingly refer to as "the butt"

oh yes, walmart... where "i'd rather be fishing" and "JESUS" license plates are kindred merchandise

And then I found this, which pretty much made my day:

heck yes, john piper!

1:40 AM


what were your favorites as a kid? my parents didn't really do the whole lullaby thing, but my grandfather used to sing us some lullaby that i to this day think makes no sense. oh well. the fact that i remember it says something, right?

the reason i bring this up is that friday night i babysat for the children of one of my pastors. they are four and two, boy and girl, and they were absolutely angelic. they were sweet to each other, they helped clean up, they went to bed happily and quietly. they were a joy. we laughed and chased each other and made faces and it was fun.

apparently their nightly routine is to brush their teeth, each pick a book, be read to together, be sung to, and then they cuddle up in their bed or crib (depending on which kid we're talking here) with their white noise background, their blankies, and their stuffed toys, and fall asleep. no whining, no "can i have a cup of water?", no kicking or running around naked. the ideal babysitting job.

so they brushed their teeth. and austin went potty. and they picked out their books - clifford and the kitty, and mommies are for counting stars. we climbed onto austin's bed and read them. then i asked, "what should i sing for you?" and they said, "the giant goo goo song!" well i don't know about you, but i, for one, am not familiar with that one, so i said, "i don't know it - pick something else. how about a song from church?" (i figured that was the biggest amount of common ground we could have. little did i know...) austin says, "sing 'life is a highway.'"

so i did.

1:22 AM

on an entirely different note that my post from 8 minutes ago...

ampersand is awesome. i would go get it if i were you.

gotta love derek and sandra.

1:17 AM

Van Til Quote

as cited in Richard Pratt's He Gave Us Stories, p. 395:

"The consistency that is found in the believer is correspondent to the consistency that is found in God. This consistency in the believer consists in willingess to think God's thoughts after him, in willingness to do God's will after him, and to feel God's feelings after him."

ok that last one is what gets me.

do you think van til means "consistency" as in "what is the consistency of this polenta?" or "are you going to commit to consistency in your walk-like-an-elephant exercise class?"

do you think this is true?

does anyone have van til's Introduction to Systematic Theology who wouldn't mind looking it up? (it should be on p. 245)

1:16 AM

New Semester

thought i'd fill y'all in on the new schedule. just for kicks.

1-4 advanced biblical exegesis (ABX) with drs cara and belcher

8-12 genesis-joshua with dr currid
1-4 admissions work (chick recruiting)

8:30-12 history II with dr fortson
1-3 authority and origin of the new testament canon with dr kruger
3-4 admissions work (chick recruiting)

nothin' on the schedule

1-5:30ish putting in hours at church (yay children's ministry!)

other important facts about the semester's flow include a move (within charlotte, don't get excited) at the end of march, a visit from mom at the end of february/beginning of march, and an as yet to-be-determined visit by my super-close friend and cousin emily sometime. so yay!!! it's gonna be a wild ride.

6:39 PM

Yay a Hymn!

As you have noticed if you've been reading this blog for more than a year, this year I'm not blogging a hymn a day for Lent. Frankly this is due to two facts, the first being that I'm somewhat maxed out on hymns I know; the second being that I am crazy-busy these days.

That said, I thought I would post this hymn we sang this morning. It's so good to be reminded that the best is yet to come.

Draw Me Nearer
i am Thine, O Lord, i have heard Your voice,
and it told Your love to me
but i long to rise in the arms of faith
and be closer drawn to Thee

draw me nearer to the cross where Thou hast died
draw me nearer to Your precious, bleeding side

there are great depths of love that i cannot know
till i cross the narrow sea
there are heights of joy that i may not reach
til i rest in peace with Thee

draw me nearer to the cross where Thou hast died
draw me nearer to Your precious, bleeding side

consecrate me now to Your service, Lord,
by the power of grace divine
let my soul look up with a steadfast hope
and my will be lost in Thine

draw me nearer to the cross where Thou hast died
draw me nearer to Your precious, bleeding side

12:14 AM

My Funny Roommate

her name is kristen, and she just made the following statement:

"i've been practicing touching my eyeball."

the end.

12:57 AM

Pick Up Lines VI

These are really pathetic. Hopefully Micah won't have any trouble keeping his paws off these....

38. Excuse me, but I may be lost... Can you give me directions to wherever you're going? [...?]

39. Hey I lost my phone number... can I have yours? [Loser.]

40. What's your first name. Hmm, that goes kinda well with my last name.

41. Did I see you on the cover of Vogue? [This and any super-model line is way overused and no longer is a compliment.]

42. I was so enchanted by your beauty that I ran into that wall over there. So I am going to need your name and number for insurance purposes. [If you're going with a line like this one, see #33. Way less risk of effrontery.)

43. Your eyes are blue, like the ocean. And baby, I'm lost at sea. [Come ON.]

44. Baby, if you were words on a page, you'd be what they call FINE PRINT! [Shut up. You deserved to be edited out.]

45. I'm sorry, were you talking to me? [No.] Well then, please start. [Rude and cocky not a good combo. Gentlemanly and cocky we ladies can usually handle, but rude and cocky is a recipe for disaster.]

46. You must be one heck of a thief because you stole my heart from across the room. [How shallow are you? And don't you keep that thing under some sort of security system?]

12:29 PM

Pick Up Lines, Part V

Per Micah's request, I stopped with the pick up lines for a while. But I still had such great material left that I've decided Micah is a big boy and can exert some self-control. :-P

These are cute. I mean, I don't think you should use them unless you're writing dialogue for a screenplay, but they are cute. Here go you...

31. Hey, come here often? Can I buy you a drink? Or maybe an island?

32. Well, here I am. What were your other two wishes?

33. Sorry, but you owe me a drink. [Why?] I looked at you and dropped mine.

34. Do you have any raisins? No? How about a date?

Ok, and these are some Roadrunner lines - moving a bit too fast.

35. Aren't we supposed to get together for a candlelight dinner later tonight? [creeeeeepy]

36. Come live in my heart and pay no rent. [If you're already asking this, I'm wondering if there's room in that heart of yours...]

37. Looks like we're late. [For what?] Dinner. Your choice this time; I'm buying. [This one actually isn't bad if you use it with someone you know, who knows you like them and hasn't been averse to hanging out before. Use it on a stranger and prepare to be whapped with a purse.]

12:03 AM

Hello Homies

this is a picture from my christmas.

yay for updates! maybe i'll give you one soon.

how lucky do you feel?