Wednesday, February 24, 2010


i hate the fluorescent lighting in my office. it makes my walls look like a sea foam green nightmare. it totally stresses me out. this morning, tom and i talked about it on our walk on the deschutes river. he texted me an hour or so later. bought me this lamp. perfect. it's gunna make my sea foam green nightmare disappear. (and so will the daffodils i bought last night at the grocery store.)

went to a wedding the day before valentine's day. i think two other couples from antioch got married that same weekend. love. a lot of red. white. pink. cute. i don't think i'd ever want to get married on or close to valentine's day. but that's just me. i'd be stressed out from some unspoken pressure for it to be perfect or something. i'm sure most people feel like that on their wedding day. but for some reason i feel like it would be worse. (i think i'm trying to justify my own words in case someone reads this who got married around then and now thinks i'm a jerk.) anyways. tom and i danced our hearts out. like total dorks. it is one of my favorite things about us. a treasure. like tom. and this little picture.

day drive this past saturday. listened to music with my windows down. i love this picture. the colors make me feel warm. suny (i like spelling it that way). wires. they make it simple and beautiful. i feel like i can smell the
air. still. the mountains were covered in snow. you can kind of see the base of them. this inspires me. to write music. to think about God. to try and understand how big he is. how he works. why he works the way he does. this picture makes me want to love. really love. the way i should. my friends. tom. my family. people that come and go. intentionally. with all of my little heart.

Monday, February 8, 2010

I'll eat you up, I love you so.

My sister Shauna is the one who made me want to start blogging again. Want to have somewhere where I can write down my thoughts. Be me, and feel good about it even if no one in the whole world ever reads this (besides myself and probably her.) She is my family. The reason I want to post videos of me singing. Songs I'm listening to. Thoughts on poetry that speaks to me. So she might feel connected to me and I to her from so far away (their are definitely five lives to coordinate for just a phone or ichat date these days...)
I love that this will be another avenue for me to love my family. Even though we sleep a thousand miles apart. I know we live our lives each day thinking of the other. Always sending words and thoughts and prayers to our God for one another. For this, I am grateful. It has made me appreciate the invaluable friendship that Shauna and I have. What her children truly mean to me. This has turned into an array of "I love Shauna Noel" thoughts. I love it.

(Shauna-na, I'll eat you up.)

Friday, February 5, 2010

happy friday.

i've decided to be more intentional with this whole blog thing. not to worry about having something perfectly edited or "profound" to say every time.

to just be grace.

mainly for my family and friends to know what's going on with me up here in the pacific northwest. that they might feel connected to me.

through music. pictures. videos. truth. quotes. thoughts. simple things. important things.

even though i'm a thousand miles away. because i love them.

with all of my little soul.

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

god in our own image.

I was reading the book "Reaching Out" by Henri Nouwen today, and came upon this.
It made me think of all that our God has been teaching me here at Antioch...

"Prayer is often considered a weakness, a support system, which is used when we can no longer help ourselves.
But this is only true when the God of our prayers is created in our own image and adapted to our own needs and
concerns. When, however, prayer makes us reach out to God, not on our own but on His terms, then prayer pulls
us away from self-preoccupations, encourages us to leave familiar ground, and challenges us to enter into a new
world which cannot be contained within the narrow boundaries of our mind or heart. Prayer, therefore, is a great
adventure because the God with whom we enter into a new relationship is greater than we are and defies all our
calculations and predictions. The movement from illusion to prayer is hard to make since it leads us from false
certainties to true uncertainties, from an easy support system to a risky surrender, and from the many "safe" gods
to the God whose love has no limits."

For the last two weeks, instead of a sermon, Ken has had more of a panel. Two mics on either side of the stage,ready for any questions from anyone in the church. It has been an incredible thing to be a part of. I took some notes the other week that had to do with this idea of who we have made God to be...

...we've created an image of God and when He doesn't fit as we want, we throw Him away. He "doesn't deliver"
what we want. This creates utilitarianism where we pick and choose what is "good" and reject what will bring us
pain. We think that this will bring us peace and harmony and make our lives peachy. We have this view of God
that He is a product and will give us the desires of our heart. This is America's version of God..."it's all about me."

My hope is that this will encourage you as it has me. Until now, my very own view of who God is has been something that I have created...habit, religion, a label, something I have been spoonfed since birth, "a weakness, a support system which is used when we can no longer help ourselves." I have loved my God with a "good face" and a pretty voice, but in my heart there was rarely a fire and I loved someone that I did not know. I look forward to knowing Him as I should, not in my own strength but in His. I am so thankful to God for the authenticity at Antioch, it is why I decided to do the internship, it is why I am here now, and it is why I want to stay...

I am a better woman because I am here...where God has called me to be.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

this is it. this is as good as life gets.

September 1st...I can't believe it. The summer months are over and everyone is heading back to school. All of the interns have been back at home/school for about two weeks now. Needless to say, it has been a lot different without the seventeen of us in meetings, eating at a yummy BBQ, or being hardcore on one of our many adventures. I miss them all so very much but am excited about this next season of life...

I was baptized two Sundays ago. Definitely had an overflow of emotions and thoughts racing through my mind, but also felt so comforted and at peace with my decision...even in the newness of being away from home and those that I love. Brandon Reynolds (the Community and Discipleship Pastor) asked all of the interns to e-mail him what baptism means. This was my response...

To be baptized...
Is a proclamation of my faith...
Is stating that from this point life is Gods...not my own...
Is a symbol of dying to myself and claiming a new, whole life in my God...
Is an opportunity to let others hope of accountability as a community...

I am so lucky to be here. I wouldn't trade this experience for anything in the world. It meant the world to me to be baptized by Justin and Ken with all of my friends there to love and support me. Every day I am amazed at how fortunate I am to be loved and cared for by such a wonderful family here in Bend.

Lord, may I never take this for granted.

Friday, July 17, 2009

just a few thoughts.

"Love, definition of: It is not an affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person's ultimate good."

I found this quote in "The C.S. Lewis Index." The idea was taken from his books, "Mere Christianity" and "God in the Dock." For some reason out of all of the quotes about love...ranging from marriage to family...this one stuck out the most to me. What if we all loved each other this way? What if relationships began with this as their foundation? What if we were intentional about every decision to love each other?

This is the way that I want to live. To love the people He has put in my life wholeheartedly, steadfastly, with my ultimate desire to be their well being.

To guard my little heart in this venture will be most important. I will be unable to do it on my own strength. May our God give me that strength to He has loved and continues to love each of us...

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


I am still enjoying every bit of my time here in Bend. So much so that I have accepted a job offer that will continue full time until the end of this year!! It was a really difficult decision to make, but I am confident that I have made the right one. I am so lucky to be in a place where I know with all of my heart that it is where the Lord wants me to be, and I can't say that I have ever felt such clear direction before. For the first time, I feel like my focus is really where it needs to be...and it is with His strength that I feel so sure.

The idea of being part of the growth of such an incredible community here at Anitoch is a delight to me. There is no place I would rather be...chasing after what is most important to me...loving every moment of it along the way...even when it hurts. I am learning so much about trusting our God. Really trusting Him, and giving Him control over the things that I have held onto with all of my might is so hard to against what our culture teaches. I am so contenet in this place. Running hard after my first love and knowing that it warms His heart in a precious way.

Lord, may I never cease to run after you with all of my matter where I am.