Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Thursday, March 4, 2010

My Soul Incarnate

Maybe it would be extreme to say that Coldplay is my soul incarnate but upon hearing their newest song "Spanish Rain/Don Quixote" which they premiered last week on the start of their Latin America tour, I am even more persuaded to say that it's true.

I get a little nervous when I'm about to listen to a new Coldplay song for the first time. "Might this be the first song I don't like?" One of the first songs I ever wrote when I first started playing guitar was titled "Don Quixote". I definitely like their version better. This new song is both absolutely Coldplay and yet fresh and not just something we've heard before. Chris Martin proves that his lyric writing is getting even better.

While listening to this song for the first time I had goosebumps and my heart and soul were dancing. I feel ridiculous even saying it but I can't help it. If this is any sign of what is to come from their new album, which is tentatively aimed to be released by Christmas I am filled with great hope that it will be another outstanding album from our boys across the pond.

Have a listen.

You can Download it here.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

And then I don't feel so bad

We all have those days when it seems like nothing is going right. We have a bad hair day, we hit every red light when we're already running late for work, someone at the party is being charmed by someone we wish was us, we get our elbow stuck in a chair in the middle of a crowded room, our boss wants to "walk into" something we did that wasn't up to snuff, we wake up and find we are a literary character in a Russian novel or perhaps having under gone a metamorphosis into a giant vermin. We've all been there.

I find that on these days on of the best things I can do is to write a list of things that I love in life. Later I go back and read this list and I'm always amazed at how many things I forget about. I can't help but read my list and find a smile is sneaking it's way across my face.

Don't leave anything off the list. If it makes you happy put it down. From the eternally mind blowing awesomeness of our unmerited salvation in Christ Jesus to the smell of waffle cones at Disneyland.

Every now and then I like to go back and add things. This list can never be too long. Below is my list feel free to borrow any of mine if you find they resonate with you as well.


* Jesus Christ and His salvation,
* Family,
* Friends,
* Elatia,
* Falling asleep to the sound of Rain,
* listening to a skilled musician,
* Passionate People,
* Imagination,
* Australia,
* Stars,
* Elephants,
* Music,
* Thunder Storms,
* Making People's lives better,
* Hugs,
* Serving,
* Listening,
* Writing,
* Sending and receiving Real Letters,
* Scent of Waffle Cones,
* Gardens,
* Miniatures,
* Trains,
* Classic Disney: meaning everything made before the 70's.,
* Jackets,
* Chivalry,
* Ruth's Chris' Steakhouse,
* Coldplay,
* Cuddling,
* Wakeboarding,
* Flying at Night,
* Bowling,
* Fresh/New Sweatshirts,
* Fresh Pineapple,
* Chocolate Covered Strawberries,
* Old Books,
* the sound of an orchestra tuning right before a performance begins,
* Frosted Mugs,
* Hands,
* Toasted Bagels,
* Autumn,
* Pumpkins,
* Pie,
* Cats,
* Breathtaking views,
* BBQ Brisket,
* Texas
* Meeting New People
* Public Speaking
* Learning more about God
* That feeling when you come home after being gone awhile
* Staying up all night talking then watching the sunrise
* Finding Solitude (especially in So Cal)
* Holding Hands
* Scarecrows
* Dancing
* Laughing until I can't breath and I'm crying
* Having No homework
* the Joy of the Lord
* The Fruits of the Spirit
* Miracles
* Praying with others
* Dreaming the Impossible
* Drive In Movie Theaters
* Puffy White Clouds
* Sunshine
* Apples
* Fires
* Kites
* Old Couples in Love
* A Glass of Red Wine
* A Pint of Guinness
* Accents
* Hats

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Absence Makes the Heart Grow

Several months ago we had a work day at my church. A couple of Trustees and I spent a good 10 hours doing hard manual labor installing new door jams and a new gas line. It was the kind of work where you are covered in dirt, sweat, blood and muscles you didn't know you had hurt. It was wonderful. Everyone once in awhile I love doing tough manly work that reminds you you're alive. We finished our work that evening and I began the drive home.

When I arrived at my "cozy" studio apartment my roommate wasn't home. My stomach gave a deep roar that echoed off the walls. I collapsed on the couch and tried to fathom what I would make for dinner. I began to think of how wonderful it would be to be married. How joyfully I would hand over my paycheck, take out the trash, change the oil in the car, squish creepy crawlies, fix and repair things and so much more, to come home to a kind woman who would greet my dirty face with a kiss and prepared even the simplest of meals. (As a side note, I love to cook and would do so with great enthusiasm when the situation is reversed.)

While initially this day dream brought pangs of longing, instead of rejecting the desires I decided to open myself, embrace all the feelings and commit them to memory and in this case a blog. I realized that this experience was what would make that day, if it ever comes, so much more meaningful and sweet. The memory of the absence will help me in appreciating my wife and the blessing that she will be to me. I don't presume that this is an absolute and I hope to blog on contentment another time.

What I learned that day was that the absence can be great catalyst to future joy. It makes me think of our Father's "now but not yet" Kingdom. We have a clouded hint of what that day will be like but until then we live with the absence as we long for that day. In the process of our sanctification our hearts can grow and stretch to hold more love and appreciation when we are united in Heaven.

Until either of those days come I will do my best to embrace the absence and cultivate joyful longing.