conviction

Awhile ago I realized that I didn’t have any huge sin standing out to me in my life.

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Which, at first glance, may appear as a good thing. In reality, personally, it mean that I had become complacent in searching my heart to seeing what I had been doing and cultivating that would cause God grief. There was no growth.

There’s a verse about praying for God to reveal the secret sins one commits, (Psalm 19:12, “Who can know all of his errors? Cleanse me from secret faults.” my paraphrase.) that come to mind quite a bit during that period,

so I prayed about that.

And that week had the full extent of what a selfish human being I am shown to me, how unacceptable that is, and how great and undeserved God’s grace is. It’s a beautiful thing. I am so small and He is so B I G and great and wonderful.

I encourage you to ask that question of God, it’s quite eye opening.

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My Twin 

My bestie was born today, a whole bunch of years ago that she prolly wouldn’t appreciate me sharing, so you’re going to have to wonder how old she really is for ever and ever. Mwahaha. But the number is not what this is about, it’s about the person.

She’s the Jorge to my Zorrina Rodriga Gabriella Gichino. She’s the alpaca to my Deer. The old soul to my child’s heart. The planner to my random. The vintage elegance to my homeless chic. 😉 The Grace to my Gracie. She’s the friend who I’ve probably gone through the most life stuff with, cried with, stayed up waaaaaaaay too late with, gone on adventures with, sat on the kitchen floor spinning plastic cups with late at night, cooked with, stressed with, laughed with, sang with, driven all over the place with, made inside jokes with, and I could go on and on.

What do I love about her?

1. Her smile! And her laugh! It makes me so happy. And the fact that she’s so ridiculously photogenic… Not even funny. And her hairrr… To die for.

 

 

2. Her love of beauty. I love listening to her viewpoints on beautiful things, because she notices different things than I do, so it’s really cool to hear the different perspective. ❤

3. Her responsibility and attention to detail. Honestly, she’s one of the most responsible people I’ve ever known, and she’s really good at doing the right thing even when it’s the hard thing, and it’s inspiring. She’s also great at noticing and remembering all the little details that I forget are even there, and takes care of them fabulously.

4. She makes yummy food! So. Freaking. Yummy. Although lately she’s been doing this thing called Make Super Yummy Things When Gracie Is Not Around, and posts pictures of them, and I just sit and drool in my sugar deprived little cave and try to figure out just how fast could I drive over.

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5. Her sense of adventure/adrenaline junkie. She likes roller coasters! And driving! And playing volleyball! And roadtrips! And surprising me at work! And tickling me to make me squeak! And she still loves me even  after I accidentally slam my forearm into her face…

6. Her love for her family/friends.

She has one of the coolest relationships with her family that I know of, and she’s veeeerrrrrrrrrrryyyyyyyyy protective of all of her people. She goes out of her way to help/show love to them, and it’s really beautiful.

7. Her loyalty.

8. Her listening ears. She’s always listened to me whenever I’m stressed or needed to rant or just talk things over, and even if she has no idea what to say back to me, or has no idea what I’m talking about, she still always manages to make me feel heard and find some sort of really great advice to give.

9. Her hard working heart. This woman is a machine. I don’t know many other people who work for as hard as she works for as long as she works. She gets stuff done in an efficient and beautiful way. And we normally have fun while we’re working, which is also great. 🙂

10. Her love for old things and crazy hats.

11. Sometimes she doesn’t like my ideas but she goes along with them anyways, and  it normally ends up being hilarious and we get good laughs out of it.

12.She shares her niece! So, a few years ago we decided that we were twins, and actually convinced people of the fact, and then she had a niece! and that niece is the cutest doll ever. And because we’re twins, that makes her niece my niece-ish. So she’s the official aunt and I’m the Auntish. It’s great.

Annual CAMA camp selfies…

 

Fun fact, I used to be terrified of her when I was little because there’s a couple years age gap between us and so she was one of the “big kids” while I was a “little kid”, but then we both grew up a bit more, and I learned that she was actually really cool.

I could go on and on about all the things I love about her, but I’m going to stop here….

Happiest of birthdays my sweet friend! I’m grateful for your existence and for your friendship, here’s to all the future adventures! 😀 Love you lots and lots. ❤

 

more new roads

Two weeks ago, we sat in a movie theater parking lot at 2 in the morning and threw out an idea for a road trip. Two weeks later, we made this wonderful idea happen. We traveled from Marysville, WA all the way down to Crater Lake, Oregon.This was the first road trip we had ever all taken together, out of state, and without the rest of our families. Such excitement.

We crossed bridges, looked at fog, doodled on paper and skin, got coffee and looked at art shops, got soaking wet on a foggy beach.

We found jellyfish drying on the beach (i refrained from touching the mesmerizing globs),I skipped and ran around because the ocean is a beautiful thing and i’m young and alive and for once didn’t get that cold, and a friend adventured with me and made sure I didn’t accidentally die or get swept away.The others held the valuables and got drenched and laughed and wrote in the sand and we walked the wrong way up a stream and jumped over the waves. We wrung salt water out of our socks and poured coffee onto our faces instead of our mouths because the cold numbed our face and hands.

We snuggled up in blankets and drove to the sunshine, booping noses (that kept on happening through the whole two days), taking turns napping and exploring each others music tastes.

We pitched our camp and looked at views off the side of the road (and a llama in a parking lot. I wanted to pet it, but alas, not that day.) Inside jokes were formed, we explored crater lake in the dark (couldn’t see the view, but we could feel it), took personality tests and discussed those, laughed at weirdly named streets, and made a campfire. Later we went out to the stars and there were so. many. My mind was blown a little bit, and we were all giddy and overwhelmed. Stargazing is funny; one moment everyone is completely serious and talking about life and struggles and God and eternity and physics, and the next everyone is madly giggling and mispronouncing words or sleeping.

The next morning was lazy, a yummy breakfast, I journaled, we talked over shared teabags and coffee and looked at the wasps that had found us and a friendly chipmunk.

After the food, we packed up and drove to Crater Lake, and this time there was light so we could see the view, and it was so lovely. I love that God is an artist and also lets us see His work.

Funky colored lichens… 🙂

After thoroughly touring the lake, we drove home. A long ride, but those are my favorites. I’ve always gotten a little sad whenever we reach destinations, because there’s something special about sitting in a metal wheeled box with people for hours at a time, exploring new (or familiar) places and sights and foods and other sensory things. I’d try to describe the ride home more, but it was giggles and sneaking pictures and naps and heads out the window and tickle wars (which resulted in squeaking) and shoulder rubs and listening to new music (I heard Bohemian Rhapsody for the first time) and jeep-beeping, and thinking about it all my heart gets full. Saying goodbye and dropping everyone off was hard, but I’m grateful to have people so great that make good byes so sad.

Photo credit to who it’s due, and I’m not exactly sure who’s is who’s. 

to ground

I hate falling.
From a cliff.
In my dreams.
At the fair.
Into sin.
To uncertainty.
I love feeling solid structure beneath me, whether a physical or emotional assurance. Grounded. Secure. Why I have such an abhorrence I’m not sure, maybe subconscious remembers reaching for a lying branch, falling far, waking up bruised and hanging by my knees who knows how much later. Or maybe it remembers the dirty feeling of falling morally, of missing the mark. That isn’t a bad fear, per se, I should strive to stay strong. It’s the fear that I have of myself (in a sense) that is wrong.
But such is life as a flawed being, falling (whether physically or otherwise) so what should I do with this fear?
I can either dwell in it, entangling myself until I’m a hyperventilating paralyzed mess, a rabbit with wide eyes afraid to move.
Or, I can find my grounding. I can sink my heels deep into my Savior and know that He’s got this. I can cling to His mane when the fears come running toward me, and know that His net is close below when I fall.
He walks with me and He talks with me, and He tells me I am His own. There is no reason for me to replay these fears.

Adventures of the frazzled poet

These past few days have been hard. 

  
Combine disappointment with long work shifts, trying to catch up in a class that I had to miss the first week of, my first college math class (as someone who really struggles with math), rampant emotions due to hormones, homework for three other classes, and you get a very frazzled little poet who’s learning how to adult. 

Last night I got over whelmed, and woke up the same this morning, but then I read my Bible. And I talked to God. It was comforting. 

There are not “bad days”, per se, just hard ones. 

The plus sides of this?

  1. I’ve gotten back into a time management mindset. Time is valuable, I have many things to  do with only so much time to do so. 
  2. It has shocked me into getting back into my bible study and more prayer (haha). 
  3. I understand math a tiny bit more. 
  4. My procrastinating brain has thought up lots of poetry. 

Just my five bits for today. 
Love,

me

desires

There’s a verse in the Bible that goes, “Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart” (Psalm 37:4).

At first, this is a super great incentive for praying just to selfishly get what you want and think that you can fool God by being spiritual to get stuff.

But then you start to look at that one part, “take delight in the Lord”, to apply it, to know Him,  and as you do that, the desires of your heart change.

You fall in love with this God of yours. You want to please Him. You want to seek Him. You want His will to be done in your life. You’re blown away by His love and goodness.

You find that the things that you thought you wanted no longer have a place in your heart, and have been replaced by something else, you want to do what God wants.

And it is good.

Praise Him.

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an INFP’s existential crisis

Every so often, I fall in a rut. I become very logical, stuff my emotions, don’t appreciate pretty things, lose my compassion, get very unhealthily hermit-like, and don’t make things.

I lose all creativity; all my words feel fake and sounds like cat poster quotes to me, my characters are flat, my art has no meaning. I feel as if I’m simultaneously too weird and yet not weird enough; like a mainstream weirdo. I’m either too prosey or not enough, I want to do something, but yet I find myself scared of what people think (which I have looked down on other people for. Oh the pride of life).

I can’t find my voice. In music. In art. In writing.

I feel my originality trying to escape; a bird beating its wings against a paper bag. I feel like I’m suffocating and need to go somewhere, but I also feel tied down. Life is so very short.

It drives me nuts. (Part of the problem I blame on hormones.)

After a day or so of this, when it happens, I stop and sit and think for a long while about what I’ve been doing. This normally comes about when I’m stressed, when I haven’t walked around outside barefoot (apparently walking around outside barefoot brings up electrons from the earth that neutralize the free radicals scouring your body) , when I have been concentrating too much on myself in  a negative way, when I haven’t been spending time in the Word and with my Heavenly Father.

So today, I jumped on my bed with my little sister and chased her around. I played with my brothers and rolled up my pants to run barefoot through the grass. I played my uke, cooked food and drank water. I prayed and studied and repented and read.

Now there is peace, and I have found a bit of my voice.

thankful

    

 I’m thankful for late night talks, friends from all over the country and world, frosty mornings, a warm fire. I’m thankful for long hugs, smiles from strangers, courtesy waves, tea in the morning. I’m thankful for my siblings and parents-my built in friends, teachers, encouragers, and comedy relief. I’m thankful for reconciliation, becoming close with old friends, and making new ones. I’m thankful for the wonderful people God has brought into my life who have shaped me into who I am. I’m thankful for people who let me listen to them, the stars, cranberries, mountains, mulled cider. Laughing til your stomach hurts, silly faces, snuggling with siblings, a worn bible. Pickles and picnics, long walks, common ground, chocolate, redeeming love, sanctification.  There is so much to be grateful for. 

joy stealers

Do you know what takes the joy out of your life?  Sin.  Sin.  When you as a Christian, allow sin to creep back into your life after you have been justified, that destroys that joy.  That’s the reason that David prayed in Psalm 51:12: “Restore unto me the joy of Thy salvation.”  He didn’t pray, “God have my salvation restored.”

Once you get saved, you can’t lose it.  But you can lose the joy of your salvation.  And there’s only one thing that can take the joy of your salvation:  if you have a broken home, that can’t take the joy out of your heart.  If you have a wayward child, that can’t take the joy out of your heart.  If your house burns down, that can’t take the joy out of your heart.

There’s only one thing that can steal your joy, and that is: sin.  You say, “Well, what if somebody does something mean to me?”  That can’t take the joy out of your heart, that can take the joy out of his heart.  Your reaction to what he does to you can take the joy out of your heart.

If you want to see what a person is, don’t watch their actions, watch their reactions.  See, you can plan your actions.  Your reactions show the real you.

-Adrian Rogers

And it’s so beautiful and reassuring that God doesn’t turn from us when we sin. If we get distant from Him, it’s because we feel guilty and turn away from Him.