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Thursday, September 30, 2010

workin' hard for the joy (so hard for it, honey)


I run into some very interesting people working in a restaurant.  Especially a restaurant within an inn.  People are here on vacation: they're here to relax.  Therefore they don't just want good food and service, they want to know all about my personal life.

Every day I'm asked questions like "Are you a student?" "Do you have a boyfriend?" "Where are you from?" and my personal favorite "What is 'Brett' short for?"  To which I happily reply, "Nothing.  Short for 'Brett.' You know, like 'Madonna,' 'Cher,' 'Shakira?' I'm just Brett."

The other night I was asked what my future endeavors are by a law student who was studying in the corner of the restaurant.  I told him that I was a grad student in the journalism program, and that so far, I was interested in doing some reporting, or news anchoring.

He looked at me with one of those future-successful-lawyer-smiles.  You know the ones I mean?  The smiles that seem to say, "I've got you all figured out." Not in a mean way, just as fact of matter.

"You're not going to make any money," he said.
As soon as those words flew from his mouth, I said "That's not what it's all about."

What I really wanted to say was..."So...?"

I'm not afraid of being poor, according to America's standards.  Otherwise I'd be living in constant fear.  I won't even go into how in some countries, simply owning a car of any make, model or year is a symbol of royalty.

What I am worried about is being poor in spirit.

It has been raining like crazy in Virginia beach today.  So much more than cats and dogs - it looks like straight milk is falling from the sky.

This morning I watched as my neighbor from downstairs carried his child in the rain and ran around a tree in the courtyard.  The child had this look of utter confusion on his face - the father was hooting and hollering as he made another venture into the rain.  His wife laughed and flirtily swatted at him with a dish rag - pretending to be annoyed that he was getting her child wet.

It was a beautiful moment to witness.

That right there.  Those moments, full of life in spirit: that's what I would like to be rich in.  You, Mr. Future Lawyer, can keep your green paper.  I'm seeking after priceless valuables.  I'm seeking after joy.

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workin' hard for the joy (so hard for it, honey)


I run into some very interesting people working in a restaurant.  Especially a restaurant within an inn.  People are here on vacation: they're here to relax.  Therefore they don't just want good food and service, they want to know all about my personal life.

Every day I'm asked questions like "Are you a student?" "Do you have a boyfriend?" "Where are you from?" and my personal favorite "What is 'Brett' short for?"  To which I happily reply, "Nothing.  Short for 'Brett.' You know, like 'Madonna,' 'Cher,' 'Shakira?' I'm just Brett."

The other night I was asked what my future endeavors are by a law student who was studying in the corner of the restaurant.  I told him that I was a grad student in the journalism program, and that so far, I was interested in doing some reporting, or news anchoring.

He looked at me with one of those future-successful-lawyer-smiles.  You know the ones I mean?  The smiles that seem to say, "I've got you all figured out." Not in a mean way, just as fact of matter.

"You're not going to make any money," he said.
As soon as those words flew from his mouth, I said "That's not what it's all about."

What I really wanted to say was..."So...?"

I'm not afraid of being poor, according to America's standards.  Otherwise I'd be living in constant fear.  I won't even go into how in some countries, simply owning a car of any make, model or year is a symbol of royalty.

What I am worried about is being poor in spirit.

It has been raining like crazy in Virginia beach today.  So much more than cats and dogs - it looks like straight milk is falling from the sky.

This morning I watched as my neighbor from downstairs carried his child in the rain and ran around a tree in the courtyard.  The child had this look of utter confusion on his face - the father was hooting and hollering as he made another venture into the rain.  His wife laughed and flirtily swatted at him with a dish rag - pretending to be annoyed that he was getting her child wet.

It was a beautiful moment to witness.

That right there.  Those moments, full of life in spirit: that's what I would like to be rich in.  You, Mr. Future Lawyer, can keep your green paper.  I'm seeking after priceless valuables.  I'm seeking after joy.

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Tuesday, September 28, 2010

wild at heart

"Safe?  Who said anything about being safe? 'Course he isn't safe.  But he's good."-C.S. Lewis

 

Lately I've been dwelling on the differences between men and women.  I know, I know, there's an original thought.  I've spent the past few days reading John Eldridge's Wild at Heart - and let me just say, I'm in love.

I, along with hundreds of thousands of other Christian, twenty-something women, have read Captivating (a book about the woman's heart, written by Eldridge and his wife Stasi), but never had I tried to unveil for myself what was happening "on the other side of the tracks" - so to speak.  Captivating was easy.

 I've grown up knowing that I want to be loved, that I want to be beautiful.  I was the little girl with long, curly hair twirling in her favorite, poofy dress.  They nailed it.  Perfectly pinpointed the desires of my heart.

But, men on the other hand, what's more a man's heart?  Never quite wrapped my mind around it, or even made the effort to figure it out.  But the difference was displayed for me quite plainly a few weeks ago.

A friend and I met in the Regent Village laundry room one evening (he was reading Captivating by the way --- which, I confess is partially what persuaded me to purchase Wild at Heart after I saw him earnestly trying to understand the opposite sex).  It was a beautiful night, so a walk around the apartment complex was definitely in order.

We'd been walking, wandering, for about an hour when we saw this beautiful fox come running toward us.  I was in awe, I had never seen a fox in person before.  We stood very quietly, as the fox ran gracefully, ever-near.

And, here, right here, is where I discovered the difference between men and women.  Are you ready?

My first reaction to the fox was girlish delight: "Oh my GOSH! Look!  A fox!"

His first reaction to the fox was skepticism/caution: "Stand back," he said as he outstretched his arms.  "He could be rabid.  If he comes any closer, I'm going to pick you up and put you over the chain-linked fence."

I just stood there, quite stupidly, my usual demeanor.  I was in shock.  It was just a fox.  But he saw a potential threat, and his immediate reaction was to protect.

He clapped his hands together.  The loud snap echoed and bounced off the walls of the apartment buildings and frightened Mr. Fox away. I smile when I think about that brief moment that interrupted our walk that night.

It is that, that protection, that thrill of danger, that I am discovering through reading this book.  What's more, I'm also learning about the "wild" side of God.  It's challenging to think about, especially since all of these years he's been the nurturing, blessing-giving God.  I've never really thought that I served an adventure-seeking, dangerous, thrilling Lord.

This should be the start of a pretty big adventure.

-Brett Elizabeth
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wild at heart

"Safe?  Who said anything about being safe? 'Course he isn't safe.  But he's good."-C.S. Lewis

 

Lately I've been dwelling on the differences between men and women.  I know, I know, there's an original thought.  I've spent the past few days reading John Eldridge's Wild at Heart - and let me just say, I'm in love.

I, along with hundreds of thousands of other Christian, twenty-something women, have read Captivating (a book about the woman's heart, written by Eldridge and his wife Stasi), but never had I tried to unveil for myself what was happening "on the other side of the tracks" - so to speak.  Captivating was easy.

 I've grown up knowing that I want to be loved, that I want to be beautiful.  I was the little girl with long, curly hair twirling in her favorite, poofy dress.  They nailed it.  Perfectly pinpointed the desires of my heart.

But, men on the other hand, what's more a man's heart?  Never quite wrapped my mind around it, or even made the effort to figure it out.  But the difference was displayed for me quite plainly a few weeks ago.

A friend and I met in the Regent Village laundry room one evening (he was reading Captivating by the way --- which, I confess is partially what persuaded me to purchase Wild at Heart after I saw him earnestly trying to understand the opposite sex).  It was a beautiful night, so a walk around the apartment complex was definitely in order.

We'd been walking, wandering, for about an hour when we saw this beautiful fox come running toward us.  I was in awe, I had never seen a fox in person before.  We stood very quietly, as the fox ran gracefully, ever-near.

And, here, right here, is where I discovered the difference between men and women.  Are you ready?

My first reaction to the fox was girlish delight: "Oh my GOSH! Look!  A fox!"

His first reaction to the fox was skepticism/caution: "Stand back," he said as he outstretched his arms.  "He could be rabid.  If he comes any closer, I'm going to pick you up and put you over the chain-linked fence."

I just stood there, quite stupidly, my usual demeanor.  I was in shock.  It was just a fox.  But he saw a potential threat, and his immediate reaction was to protect.

He clapped his hands together.  The loud snap echoed and bounced off the walls of the apartment buildings and frightened Mr. Fox away. I smile when I think about that brief moment that interrupted our walk that night.

It is that, that protection, that thrill of danger, that I am discovering through reading this book.  What's more, I'm also learning about the "wild" side of God.  It's challenging to think about, especially since all of these years he's been the nurturing, blessing-giving God.  I've never really thought that I served an adventure-seeking, dangerous, thrilling Lord.

This should be the start of a pretty big adventure.

-Brett Elizabeth
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Friday, September 24, 2010

still and free


You're a thief in the black night
you burst into my being
the shattering of crinkling glass
beneath the weight of cowardice toes.
You tip-toe on the line of faith
and step into the fervor.
Arguing vague rules of right.
Defending wrathful wrongs.

The heat of your breath
drips thick and slow --
its the flickering wick
on a slender candle,
it's the suffocating humid air
that breaks into my lungs.

You make me still and free.

***

Well, friends.  It's been a while.  No apologies, just excuses.  But I won't bore you with them here.  Let's just say with the changing of the seasons marks a very challenging, stressful, joyful --- and yes, wonderful time in my life.

There is nothing like the feeling of wonder when you feel as though you are truly following the will of the Lord.  I'm here.  I'm wandering the halls of a calling, something beautifully constructed just for me, before I was even spoken into being.

"With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith."
-2 Thessalonians 1:11



Brett Elizabeth
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still and free


You're a thief in the black night
you burst into my being
the shattering of crinkling glass
beneath the weight of cowardice toes.
You tip-toe on the line of faith
and step into the fervor.
Arguing vague rules of right.
Defending wrathful wrongs.

The heat of your breath
drips thick and slow --
its the flickering wick
on a slender candle,
it's the suffocating humid air
that breaks into my lungs.

You make me still and free.

***

Well, friends.  It's been a while.  No apologies, just excuses.  But I won't bore you with them here.  Let's just say with the changing of the seasons marks a very challenging, stressful, joyful --- and yes, wonderful time in my life.

There is nothing like the feeling of wonder when you feel as though you are truly following the will of the Lord.  I'm here.  I'm wandering the halls of a calling, something beautifully constructed just for me, before I was even spoken into being.

"With this in mind, we constantly pray for you, that our God may count you worthy of his calling, and that by his power he may fulfill every good purpose of yours and every act prompted by your faith."
-2 Thessalonians 1:11



Brett Elizabeth
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Wednesday, September 1, 2010

here are a few of my (new) favorite things




















1) Watching things grow.  I can't have a pet in my new apartment, so I'm one of those "plant ladies" now.  As you can probably tell from the seeds, these will be sunflowers. 



2) Mums (JMU mums to be more specific).  Their upkeep is easy, and HELLO, they're purple and gold.  I got them for $4.99 at the local Farm Fresh. 







3) Every year I come back from the Dominican Republic with a new obsession.  The first year it was mangoes.  Last year it was mariposas (butterflies).  This year I have added the avocado to my list.  The ones I pick out from the Farmer's Market will never be quite as good as the ones we plucked off the trees  in Santo Domingo. 

















4) Visitors from home.  Even when brief.  There's nothing like a good soul-bond session with the girls that you love to put things into perspective. 

























5) Big Sam's Inlet Cafe and Raw Bar
Now, I don't know if anyone of you has ever experienced a mouthgasm before.  This restaurant got my taste buds off.  I had the best crab cake sandwich of my life there.  Their fries were pretty superb too.  It's right off I-264 and is located on the waterfront.  I strongly suggest checking out this local hot spot if you are ever in the Virginia Beach area.
6) Public speaking.  Who knew? 

7) Finally, the people at Regent.  Today I played ping-pong for a solid half-hour with a freshman boy that I had never met.  Where else on earth could anyone do that?  I think there is a feeling of security knowing that everyone here has something very important and special in common.

What are some new fun discoveries you've made?
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here are a few of my (new) favorite things




















1) Watching things grow.  I can't have a pet in my new apartment, so I'm one of those "plant ladies" now.  As you can probably tell from the seeds, these will be sunflowers. 



2) Mums (JMU mums to be more specific).  Their upkeep is easy, and HELLO, they're purple and gold.  I got them for $4.99 at the local Farm Fresh. 







3) Every year I come back from the Dominican Republic with a new obsession.  The first year it was mangoes.  Last year it was mariposas (butterflies).  This year I have added the avocado to my list.  The ones I pick out from the Farmer's Market will never be quite as good as the ones we plucked off the trees  in Santo Domingo. 

















4) Visitors from home.  Even when brief.  There's nothing like a good soul-bond session with the girls that you love to put things into perspective. 

























5) Big Sam's Inlet Cafe and Raw Bar
Now, I don't know if anyone of you has ever experienced a mouthgasm before.  This restaurant got my taste buds off.  I had the best crab cake sandwich of my life there.  Their fries were pretty superb too.  It's right off I-264 and is located on the waterfront.  I strongly suggest checking out this local hot spot if you are ever in the Virginia Beach area.
6) Public speaking.  Who knew? 

7) Finally, the people at Regent.  Today I played ping-pong for a solid half-hour with a freshman boy that I had never met.  Where else on earth could anyone do that?  I think there is a feeling of security knowing that everyone here has something very important and special in common.

What are some new fun discoveries you've made?
SHARE:
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