Sunday, November 29, 2009

Embraces like Bullets

A Friend from place speaks destination,
From city creates fantasy,
Their home, our dream.

Time and conversation
I have food you do not know about...
To do the work of my father.
Love revealed in her.

Dorm of acquaintances,
Barracks of brotherhood,
Home is family,
Friend in fantasy.

Dreams compel hearts and hands
To leave father and mother
Become one flesh

To make home anew
One step closer to heaven
Your kingdom come

Man, master, mission, mate
Genesis as thesis
Jesus the argument
Spirit like breath


Father make my destination you
The city on a hill
Not Portland, Nashville, or Paris
My dream, Love is you.

You and I and her
Freedom in labor
Mission minded dreamer
Adrenaline in embraces like bullets,

Grace tangible, the cross
My gun, my books, running shoes.
The resurrection life
Time and conversation

Love revealed in him
For her….my flesh.

All you need is Love… and a French press.

I have become convinced through the many hours of study, thousands of push ups, and hundreds of songs this season has provided that there is are only a few things needed to be genuinely happy. Love… and a French press.

When I moved away from home 5 and a half months ago I started writing a list of things I am thankful for. As I wrote I realized more and more the value of a dollar and the irreplaceable currency of time. I began to grow in the revealed value of simplicity. I remember distinctly one specific chilly morning in my small cement room where I sat wrapped in shirt upon shirt upon sweatshirt with my French press brewing. I was overwhelmed with thankfulness! I was in new territory…

Back in Bend and only a month before, I had opened my first bank account and dumped all my pennies and dimes in. The day after I joined the ranks of those packin checks and debit cards I needed to make an initial payment for an internship with The City Church in the amount of 1075 dollars. The only money I had been successful in bringing in was from singing songs in a breezeway downtown. Our family has been fighting waves in a financial storm that seems to never end its climb to climax. My parents had been supportive but not gung ho about me moving up to Seattle early. The money was not there to send me but after praying for months about this summer the internship returned over and over again to my heart. I knew it was what God wanted me to do and continued to believe that he could provide. My first little white receipt reporting the sum in my account proclaimed that he did. I had 1086 dollars.

A few weeks later and only days before I was to leave, I had my graduation party and released my little CD needing to make 650 dollars to cover the second payment for the internship. After the songs were sung, food was eaten, and hugs were liberally distributed the party came to a close and I counted opened the gifts. Bill after bill came in and I counted, 100 to 200 to 300…. 656 dollars total! This confirmed it for my Mom and she proclaimed, “God provided and even gave you change for coffee!”

Side note: Listen to your moms! If they are anything like mine they are wise ladies!

Through this process of learning to trust God with finances not only for a family but also personally, I began to realize the importance of thanksgiving. Hence the thank you list! This new territory opened my eyes that morning to remember where God had brought me from and the value of my family. Now I sat where God had brought me and looked at my French press. Steam rose piercing the cold air in my little room with a robust fragrance!

I am not just a lover of coffee and its culture! It symbolizes for me the extravagance of God provision. Coffee is expensive and I cannot afford to do all my studying in the nooks and crannies of coffee shops but even now in my dorm here at SPU, I have my French press. I have the extravagant love of God and he has provided for the big things like school and the little things like coffee. It is a beautiful simplicity that has been revealed freshly in my life. My coffee may be black, I may be in need of a car and a job, but God knows my needs and he provides more than enough! I can trust him with my heart. Big and small issues have become my vehicle for growth. I find that often I could believe for the big stuff like provision to intern but then when I need a power strip I figure I need to find the finances in my own efforts. It got to the point that I needed a spatula and a power strip and prayed. Like ten minutes out of prayer I walked to the trash room and found a spatula, power strip, and a sweat shirt I forgot to ask for. :)

We have no need to worry friends! We have a good dad who is not affected by any economic downturns. He is not even fazed by our lack of faith. He teaches us lovingly and patiently. How beautiful is the simplicity of the Gospel! All we need is Love…. and to respond with a life laced with thankfulness.