Crazy little thing called Life

Today, classic Moriah moment, I have used my day off to take my dog to the vet, go grocery shopping (yay, sushi!) and watch old episodes of a show that I mainly like because one of the male characters has really amazing eyes. Okay, that’s not literally the main reason I like it, but it’s definitely a perk.

Quick movie recommendation for you though! Last night I went to see “Old Fashioned”. Despite the fact that this movie is perfect for conservative people who love love stories and desire to honor God with their entertainment choices, it’s suffered from an extreme case of under-advertizment, so few have heard of it. But it’s definitely a movie you should spend your time and money on.

Cons: Obviously low budget, starts off a bit cheesy, the actors are a bit wooden with their lines at first and you’ll probably find that there’s a lot of awkwardness that you can’t quite place.

 

Pros: I figured out the cause of this, however. In most movies and TV shows, the lines are delivered so perfectly, spaced so evenly, that there is literally none of what you actually get in real life human interactions. Such as pausing for thought, deciding what to say, missing a word or just saying something that doesn’t really come out smoothly. And any “awkward” silences are often filled with some sort of subtle background music or distraction to draw attention away from the moment of silence. This movie is not like that. The more I thought about it, I realized that this movie felt awkward because you never spend 2 hours just watching people talk, without also thinking about how to contribute to the conversation. This movie was literally like watching real people have real conversations. All the awkwardness of actual human interaction still intact and untampered with. And it made me smile. It made me feel more human.
Also, super adorable love story. Free spirited girl learns what it’s like to be truly loved and respected, uptight man learns to accept forgiveness from his past, and to open himself up to experiencing life at it’s fullest (without compromising his desire to honor God).

So yeah, go see the movie. Get a whole group together to go see the movie! Take your whole church to see the movie. Something like that. :)

On a totally unrelated note, I learned a valuable lesson this week. You cannot be everyones friend. Oh, how I’ve tried. But no matter what lengths you go to, some people cannot accept real friendship.

Real friendship isn’t just going out for coffee and having fun together. Sometimes it’s calling them up in the middle of the night crying and needing prayer. Sometimes it’s confronting them about something they’re doing that’s damaging to themselves or others, telling them a truth they’d rather not hear about themselves. In a true friendship, you soften each others rough edges, bear one another’s burdens, and lean on one another as you journey through this wild ride called life. Being in a friendship with someone should make you a better person. It should make you more like Christ.

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And not everyone will let you be a friend. Some people are happy to have fun with you, bear (some) of your burdens with you, call you up crying and needing advice, even correct you when you need it. But the moment you see a genuine problem and try to do the same, even in a loving manner, they throw up their arms and claim you aren’t really a true friend because you aren’t “accepting them for who they are”.

We all have that tendency, it’s part of being human. Odds are we will all have that reaction from time to time. But when that reaction is the only response you get, there is a serious problem. One sided friendship is not friendship. And it is damaging to remain in a that kind of relationship long term.

That’s something I’ve always struggled with, and until recently I’ve never been able to make that decision to finally let go and move on. And even though it’s sad, it’s also freeing. You don’t realize how much the negativity of others brings you down until that negativity is gone. It’s a kind of maturity that I’m so glad God is creating within me. Honestly, with everything I’ve been through in the last 6 months, I’m finding it easier to open myself up to God and let him unshackle me from the things that have been holding me back. Pain has a way of doing that to a person, if you let it.

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Anyway, I’m about to head out for a long walk, and my laptop is telling me it’s got %12 battery remaining. But that’s what’s going on with me. :)

~TQG

This is where the title goes if you’ve thought of one

Yesterday would have been my mom’s 48th birthday. Nearly three months since she went home, but it doesn’t feel like it’s been that long. Or maybe it does. It feels like it’s been forever, but at the same time, it still feels fresh, like it was only yesterday.

I find myself being hit with things sometimes quite suddenly… Not long ago I went with a friend of mine to David’s Bridal to pick up her wedding dress. While we were there she saw a thermos that said “Mother of The Bride”, and exclaimed “Oh! I love that! Definitely getting one of those for mom!” Moments like that just ache. I found myself looking around at all the dresses that night, seeing glowing young brides trying them on and their mom’s giving them advice, “Hmm.. I like that one, but I liked the lace better on the other one.” and thinking to myself “I don’t even know if I’ll ever be able to do this without crying…” My mom’s opinion on those things means more to me than anyones. My mom’s opinion on men, her approval, means so much to me.

Yesterday I decided to change my name on Twitter and Instagram, so instead of having my first and last name, it has just the first and middle. Because my mom’s name, Elizabeth, is also my middle name. I’ve always liked it, but in honor of her I’m sporting it even more proudly. Moriah means “The Lord is my Teacher” and Elizabeth means “Pledged to God”. I think that’s a pretty powerful combination.

The Lord is my Teacher,  I am pledged to Him.

Since November, I’ve definitely noticed changes in myself. Good changes, I’d say. Improvements. Ignoring the grief driven first month of eating whatever was in front of me, I’ve made my health a top priority. Doing some form of exercise almost daily and eating much more purposefully than I was previously. I’ve gotten more relaxed around people, become more outgoing, and a little bit better about answering my phone when it rings (It’s a serious problem, haha). I’m less concerned about peoples opinions and I (mostly) stopped hiding from people with cameras, mainly because I wish there had been more pictures of mom. She never liked having pictures taken, so there aren’t many recent ones of her. I’ve also made it a point to do at least one social thing a week. As in spend time with people on purpose not just go to starbucks and sit near people. (Guilty of calling that social time… yup.) Which has helped me immensely, because time around coworkers needs to be counterbalanced with time around those who encourage me with their speech and actions.

I’m trying (still) to find a place to take vocal lessons, but I’m coming up empty on that. Also looking into yoga classes (a pastime I miss terribly, one of my favorite forms of exercise) and still exploring the realm of college classes, trying to decide what to spend my precious few moneys on (I’m aware that moneys is not a word). At 21 I’ve pretty much given up on finding a “career” that I want to pursue, I will argue with anyone who claims that it’s somehow an incomplete view of life to just want to be a wife and mother. Not saying I won’t work, just that what kind of work I do is irrelevant to my dreams. I do love children’s ministry, but in all honesty, I’ve known far too many youth ministers (including my parents) to think for even a moment that you can earn a living that way. It’s a fabulous thing to do, whether you volunteer or do it part-time, but it’s not a career you can live on, in my experience. I’m hoping eventually I can arrange my work schedule in a way that will allow me to do that on the side, because that would really make my heart happy. Kids are such bright stars of life.

Anyway, I’ve been off work today, and gotten almost nothing done except catch up on some missed sleep, wash a few dishes and talk to my dog. He got stung by something yesterday, his ear is very swollen and painful… I keep telling him he’s kind of a dork for managing to get stung by something in 30 degree weather. But he doesn’t seem to understand… Then again, I don’t think clearly when I’m on benadryl either so I can’t really blame him.

Until next time!

~TQG

 

Little Things

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Thankful for God’s handiwork. I haven’t always been appreciative of the way He designed me. But I’m learning to. Especially my natural beachy waves. ^_^
Made in His image. To think negatively of yourself is to criticize the greatest artist of them all.

Flowers

“A wallflower in a world of social butterflies.”

The tagline for my blog has been the same since the day I started this blog, but I don’t believe I’ve ever truly explained it’s origin or it’s personal meaning to me. So I’ve decided that today is the day!

Dictionary.com defines “wallflower” as “a person who, because of shyness, unpopularity, or lack of a partner, remains at the side at a party or dance.” Though I do tend to be less myself in a group setting and thus mingle on the sidelines a lot, that isn’t my definition of wallflower.

A flower is simple, yet stunningly beautiful. Clothed in more splendor than Solomon!

Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. ~Luke 12:27

A flower does not seek attention, nor crave it. Flowers are sought out because of their beauty and pleasant aroma, as a way of showing love, affection and good intentions to others. Sympathy, because they bring color and life, a peace offering, because they’re tender and gentle. Butterflies seek out flowers to sustain life, they come and visit the flower for a short time to refuel, and then travel on to the next flower, resting for a moment on the petals sometimes as they drink.

Maybe I’m reaching a bit, but aren’t we as Believers supposed to be like flowers in a world of lost butterflies? Letting them drink deep of Christ’s love through us if they so choose, and being available to them when they need us, but not fluttering about in their faces, trying to get them to come look at US and how pretty WE are and how amazing WE are. Allowing the aroma of Christ to draw them to us in a way that show’s His glory, not ours.

For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing.” ~2 Corinthians 2:15

I see very few, if any, examples of Jesus trying to gain more followers. I see a lot of examples of Jesus being a pleasant aroma of love and forgiveness, letting people come to Him when they’ve finally decided their way wasn’t working so well. Jesus is attractive, in the sense that His character is welcoming, loving, but also strong, and a little bit wild.

Safe?” said Mr. Beaver; “don’t you hear what Mrs. Beaver tells you? Who said anything about safe? ‘Course he isn’t safe. But he’s good. He’s the King, I tell you.”

“He’s wild, you know. Not like a tame lion.”

~C.S. Lewis, Chronicles of Narnia

I see so much raw, wild beauty in being a follower of Christ. His aroma is on us, running through our veins. If we just take the time to tap into it and let it flow freely, people will notice. Like a single wildflower in a dried up prairie, the little lost butterflies will seek us out when they need something that can sustain them on their journey. And even when they fly away from us, the nourishment Christ provided through us will stay with them as a constant reminder.

How amazing is that? That is why I strive to be a wallflower in a world of social butterflies. Maybe one day I’ll be a wildflower, but then again, maybe there are butterflies who wouldn’t be able to find me if I were in the middle of the crowd. Ya never know. Either way, God is awesome, and His wild beauty is beyond words.

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“…groans too deep for words.” (Romans 8)

I have a board on Pinterest that I add to whenever I’m really struggling with missing my mom. Because sometimes I can find words in a pin that I can’t find in my heart, because there are pains too deep for words. If you’re interested in checking it out (warning, it’s probably kinda depressing) here’s the link.

I’m comforted by the fact that even when I have no words to express how I feel, God hears my hearts cry.

 Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we ought, but that very Spirit intercedes with sighs too deep for words. And God, who searches the heart, knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God. We know that all things work together for good for those who love God, who are called according to his purpose. (Romans 8:26-28)

I know that there are some who don’t understand why I’m not angry at God for taking my mom. And I’ll be honest, sometimes do get angry, but I always spend extra time talking to God when I am, and He always soothes my heart. I prayed for my mom’s healing, and God healed her permanently. She will never shed another tear, never again will she struggle to breathe. She’s been healed beyond my wildest dreams, and I will get to see her again. And though she’s not right here where I can talk to her and see her anymore, I know she’s still praying for me. Constantly going to the Father on my behalf. And I know she’s watching me try my hardest to be the “woman of the house”, and she’s proud of me.

What hurts the most is knowing that she won’t be at my wedding. She won’t be able to babysit my children, they won’t have the benefit of having her as their grandma. So many people that I know never got to meet her, and that really bothers me. She was so important, such a huge part of my life, that I feel like you can’t really know or understand me unless you’ve met her.

The night she died, I spent almost the entire night sitting on my couch in the dark, across the room from one of my close friends who knew her well. I just sat and alternated between crying so hard I couldn’t breath, and being totally numb. And sometimes I could hear her crying too, and that meant more than anything to me. Because you can’t cry over someone you didn’t love. I needed the company of someone who needed to cry too.

And I always will. Any friends I have who knew and loved my mom have become limited edition. More valuable than they can understand. All people are special and irreplaceable, don’t get me wrong. I just can’t help but want to protect those few that can not only understand my pain, but remind me of the memories that keep her alive in my heart. Anyone can say “I know that must be hard, and I’m here for you”, but only a few can end it with “you remember that time she said____”. There is something so healing about smiling when your heart aches. Letting a memory give your heart a hug when it feels like it’s falling apart.

Anyway, that’s my thought(s) for the time being. I know I’m not the only one struggling with loss, I hope that God uses posts like this to help others going through the same thing. Please, feel free to drop me a comment if God used something I’ve written to comfort your heart. I’d love to hear from you. :)

~TQG

The Future (Ooohhh!)

Lately, I’ve been feeling God’s hand in my life, gently molding my heart. Softening the areas that had previously grown callous, opening me up to new possibilities I may have ignored or been disinterested in before. There’s so much I want to do, and I’m realizing how short life on this earth is. I don’t want to waste the time I’ve been given. I want to travel and visit the people that are dear to me, see the places I’ve always wanted to see. But I don’t know where to begin. Traveling requires copious quantities of money, money that I don’t really have, or at the very least, can’t talk myself into spending all in one place.

School also requires money! And I’d like to do some of that as well. Though I have a semi-pessimistic opinion on the real value of a college degree in the working world, I do want to gain more skills. Skills I’ll actually use. I’ve got ideas, but they’re all very subjective, and I can’t nail one down. At least, right now I’m struggling to do so. I love working with kids, but not in a way that I can really go to school for.

It’s frustrating. I get asked so regularly what my “plans” are, and I want to answer them with something like “well I’m going to school for _____ and I’m going to get a job doing ____”. Today though, I had a devotional that focused on this verse:

Come now, you who say, “Today or tomorrow we will go into such and such a town and spend a year there and trade and make a profit”—yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we will live and do this or that.” As it is, you boast in your arrogance. All such boasting is evil. (James 4:13–16)

Now I know this verse isn’t saying that having plans is evil, it’s saying that you should always bear in mind that God’s plans are above yours, and He often changes your course without telling you. You can’t predict your future. His thoughts are higher than our thoughts. (Isaiah 55:9) But what this verse and that devotional made me wonder today is this: Perhaps my answer to them can just be “I’m in the process of seeking God’s will for my life”. Not that I’m just waiting for words in the sky telling me what to do, but that I’m looking at all my options, weighing the benefits and praying over my decision. At the moment, if I’m honest, I have say it’s not a very satisfying answer, but it’s the truth. I desperately want to set a course and start working toward something, but all the somethings out there are expensive, and money can only be spent once. Can I ask my readers to pray with me, that God helps steer me toward the right path? Helps me make a decision, before I lose my mind? :P

Whatever may come, I’m praying for some major “progress” in 2015. Some sort of progression toward the dreams God’s laid in my heart. 2014 ended in heartbreak. Hoping that 2015 can begin with healing, and a fresh start.

~TQG