Tuesday, January 22, 2013

philadelphia at christmastime

It was a ridiculously sunny day in the middle of December when we brought my sister home from Quebec and stopped in Philadelphia for a day on the way back.  It rained a little, but always while we were inside shopping or at the fabulous indoor market (it smelled like waffles and I got a dinner crepe--first one I've had since France) or seeing various historical landmarks.  It was just a girls' trip, me and my mom and sisters, staying one night with a family with an adorable little boy, spending one day roaming around the city, and seeing a show (Sight & Sound's Jonah...which has stayed with me more than I thought it would).

My shoes were soaked and my feet freezing by the end of the day, and halfway through the afternoon we decided to spend the rest of our time relaxing in Starbucks.  The light was gorgeous and oh, travelling again reminds me how much I love taking pictures of places like this.  My sisters are so dear to me--I love them to pieces.  And I love my mommy and how she has instilled in all of us a love of travelling, adventuring, seeing new places.

So here's some photos from Philadelphia at Christmastime.  Enjoy.

Saturday, January 12, 2013

black & white

Sometimes I long for a simpler life.  I'm not referring to the stuff, I mean the living.  Life is so big and complex and humbling and unpredictable and confounding and I myself am so small and yet feel an overwhelming pressure to know what I'm about and who I'm affecting.

There's only been one week of the semester and yet I already feel the need for more time.  I know I have significantly more time on my hands than last semester, but I'm afraid of spending it irresponsibly.  I want to spend more time writing, like pouring my soul onto paper writing.  Real, deep, maybe somewhat raw, probably for no one's eyes but mine.  But I know that type of thing is good for me--it helps me process my thoughts in a good way, or else they all stay jumbled very uncomfortably inside.

I so desire to be a better friend to people.  I have incredible friends, and a lot of them.  But I know, I know, beyond just trying to throw a pity party for myself, that I am not the best friend I could be sometimes.  I know there are things I should change, not for other people but because God has been showing me things about myself that hurt in a way that is necessary and good.  I'm scared I won't listen, and sometimes messing up terrifies me.

I wish I knew what I was doing with my life--what my calling is.  Not more than a year ago I remember saying that I wished that, rather than being just moderately good at multiple little things, there was something that I was exceptionally good at.  I've realized since then that theatre is the closest thing I have to that.  I don't mean to brag, I honestly don't know how good I am, but I do know that God gave me a huge passion for it and that it's my niche in the world and I never feel happier or more alive than when I'm doing it.  And I really, really hope God uses that in my life.

I long to get back to good reading again.

I want--I need--to be lit on fire for Jesus in a way that I never have been before.  I want to get more excited about him than I do about people or musical theatre or anything else in the world.  I want to talk  about him more, talk to him more, but I also want to listen to him more.

I so hope to someday reach a point where I can love like my God loves me--unselfishly, unconditionally, unfalteringly.  I see so, so much of the love in this world that isn't even love as much as it is selfish and self-serving.  I don't want to love selfishly.  I want to be a giver, not a getter.  I want that love to fill me so much that it can't help but spill over.  I want not to care if people like me, dislike me, or don't know I exist.  I want to find my identity in Jesus alone, as the one that he loves.

I think maybe I should spend more time outside.  I think maybe I should play the piano more.  I think maybe I shouldn't put myself in a box, and I shouldn't put others in one either.  I think maybe I make some things more complicated and confusing than they have to be, and I think maybe I should be active about how to change that.  I think maybe I should keep trying to learn and learn and learn and care and try and be.

I want to invest in my siblings.  I want not to worry about the future.  I want to be above reproach.  I want to decide what is important to me and do it.  I want to be intentional and gracious with my friendships.  I want to be certain of things.  I want to hear the voice of God and I want to answer.  I want to be able to let things go when it is better that way.  I want to trust and I want to be trustworthy.  I want to look back and be happy with my choices, and right now I want to look forward knowing I will look back and be happy with those that I'm making even today.

There are so many decisions I need to make and tasks I need to accomplish and I wish life was as black and white as a photograph.  But while it can be dreadfully overwhelming, I also want to be excited that I have so much ahead of me.  So much life, so much potential.

a little writing from much too late last night. maybe this could be considered a new years list of sorts?