Monday, November 23, 2009

Entering courts with praise

Ah Thanksgiving. In years past I have made up a little excerpt of things for which I'm thankful, but this year I want to take a slightly different approach.

I am so thankful for worship. I feel like the Lord has opened up my heart to be able to worship him more fully in the past few years. And I've realize it truly is a gift of God.

A few months ago one of the ministers at our church was preaching on healing at a very difficult time, and he talked about how, as he looked around the auditorium, he felt like some people were finding their only peace in worship. When they worshiped, they were able to transcend the weight of the world that holds us down and meet God.

I am so grateful that the Lord provides such beautiful music to bless both us and Him. That there are people who have gifts for leading others in worship. I'm thankful for the revival that is bringing the singing of scriptures back into worship. I'm thankful for the freedom to show emotion in worship. I'm just so thankful for those moments of joy and solace.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Reasons to not blog

As I've hinted at before, this has been kind of an eventful year. At the same time, this year I have become an uber-lame blogger here at ol' Surprised by Joy.

I've thought about why this might be, and I have two main theories.


I use this blog as a reflective place. Writing is therapeutic for me to process through events and happenings, understand them better, understand myself better. However, through the trials of this year I am not quite to a place of reflection with many of the situations yet. I'm still in the thick of it.

I can't tell you how many drafts sit in my little queue from the past year. Dozens. I have written so many blog posts that I just can't finish. I don't know how to finish them, because the situation isn't resolved in my mind. If they can't resolve in my mind, I can't resolve them in writing.


Sometimes it's not appropriate to write about things on a public blog. Well, that's my opinion at least. Church, work, friendships- these things aren't really conducive to playing out on a public internet forum.

This is also something I think about down the road. I'd love to write a memoir or non-fiction piece about my time in Japan, but when my stories involve real people, how can I do that fairly? When anyone writes about actual situations, they are writing their perspective on the person, place, time, and actions- not necessarily factual. It very literally plays out the cliché that perception is reality.


These are all things I'm trying to balance. Because of my work, everyday I see people play out situations and say things online that I think they will probably regret one day, and I don't want to be that person.

Hopefully in the months to come as situations resolve I'll be able to look back in hindsight and have more to say. Thanks for sticking with me regardless. :)

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Turner Falls

As a preemptive strike against going crazy during this busy week, yesterday I took the day off and went down to Turner Falls. I'd never been, and it was blissful. I went on the PERFECT day- weather was perfect, foliage was perfect, and there were maybe 15 other people I ran across the entire day. Thank you Lord!

Here are some of my favorite pics. All of them can be seen in my Turner Falls Album.

The first thing I noticed and was entranced by all day were the falling leaves floating along in the water.

And of course the waterfalls. Turned the corner and there it was... breathtaking.

And I met some little bug friends.

This little guy car surfed on my windshield for quite a while!

This was a "messed up" shot that I thought turned out really cool.

And of course... sunset.

What a glorious day! I kept just singing to myself and God all day long, since no one was really around to hear me. Thank you Lord!