Saturday, April 28, 2007

the death of modernism

I am attempting to get through The Death of Modernism by the cultural theorist Raymond Wiliams as I sit on my big chair trying to avoid the annoying loud children as they play in plastic pools to try to stay cool on this hot day. Instead of hearing their yells and screams I have attempted to drown these kids out by listening to Miles Davis and drinking a cold Bass ale. I never thought I would get to this point where I would become a person who would listen to Miles and read theory. It seems so over the top, smart.....

I know that I have a lot more to go to become an intellectual but from a picture-esque view it would look like today that I am already there. Sometimes it just seems pathetic but I know this is right where I need to be. I can never go back....I can never go back and not understand something that just a few years ago I thought was just to complex. Don't get me wrong I enjoy that I can understand Williams (though not all of it).

I guess this is what happens when you are a year away from finishing grad school....

Friday, April 27, 2007

freedom writers

I spent the evening watching Freedom Writers. I know I can’t watch movies like this because they really challenge me, I always want to accept this challenge, and I don’t know how to integrate them all. This is the question I have right now and I know that the response needs to be the church. How do people of faith respond with love? I really do believe it is seeking the needs of the community and walking into that love with a healthy response, not cramming our faith down their throats. That love speaks for itself. People know, people are not fooled. When we walk in that love things begin to happen that are beyond the control of ourselves….because it is not about us in the end it is about walking outside of our pain to see outside of ourselves.

I remember living in Cleveland and there is a moment where I sat on my floor and just stared at the mirror. There was so much pain in my life. I was following the wrong path. That path was not set up for me to win or to succeed but to understand the importance of walking with a limp. I see the pain as really important for my growth as a person who desires to do something bigger than myself.

It's amazing what time can do to heal wounds but the scars are there to remember what that is all about. I am not sad or angry anymore about my past but i do know how important it is to do what you know you need to do. Sometimes that means running hard and other days that means resting. I know that my life is just where it needs to be. It's amazing what the statement can do to soothe the soul. I am tired and I am weary but i know that I am in the right place.

I had this feeling when I was the women's director at Spring Hill a couple of summers ago. I knew in my heart that is where I needed to be and I never doubted myself, my gifts, or my ability to serve. Since being at Fuller that sense of clarity seems to be showing itself once again. A couple of weeks ago I decided to participate in a post-lent experience. One that was cleansing to the soul and cleansing to the eyes.

I know that everything has a purpose and a proper intent. The logic that once seemed to be the footholds of my life have turned to no longer take the weight or importance that I once had so hoped for.

Tuesday, April 24, 2007

I have much farther to go...

A little late but better late than never...

Rosie and Denison were lovely. It was wonderful for them to come and be a part of the Fuller community. I felt like they stepped into my living room and shared their hearts, stories, song, and verse. It was a an event that I hope that never leaves my memories for quite awhile. The songs of Rosie Thomas are usually written to where I am at relationally. When I walked out of the show on Saturday I felt loved, empowered, and bold.Rosie herself was silly one moment and then vulnerable the next. She reminded us that there is hope and that brokenness is not forever. I needed to hear that and be reminded that the pain eventually produces beauty.

The show was lovely. You can't go wrong when the auditorium was packed out and attentive.

I have been on an old music kick lately. I haven't really received or bought any new music lately so it has been back to the old CD tower. It's been good...I have realized I have some crap...some music that I shouldn't own or even possess. It's funny to think how i felt i should have this in my collection. I thought I would be the shit if I had these records but in all reality the records are shit and I what I have left are stacks of memories.

I hope to be writing more about the music that happens to be entertaining my ears. Let's hope so....

Monday, April 23, 2007

Oh Oprah...

My thoughts on Oprah and her town hall meeting...

As many know I am actively engaging in dialogue about hip hop at Fuller. I am intrigued with the dialogue because the questions that are being asked are interesting but are they asking the right questions? I feel they are hitting on the right topics; misogyny, racism, oppression, systemic pain. Those are the right issues but the questions are leading to open ends, unanswered pain, and everyone is trying to be heard.

The answer to some is just to get rid of the hip hop in general. Just let it go....well that's not the right answer.
It's not a fair assumption to have it happen. What can we do with the systemic problems as well as the media cultures pushes the structure of what is happening in this space. When will we wake up and rub the sleep out of our eyes? When will we see what is REALLY happening rather than what we want to see?

Sometimes I want something to be a certain way so I will turn and twist things to make it say what i want it to say. Throughout the dialogue this is what's happening with the O. Some of these words are being twisted and turned to be something that she wants it to be.

One thing that I am impressed with is the ability to use the art to say something. That even with hip hop being only about 27 years old it makes an incredible impact within a global economy. How could the gospel spread like Hip Hop? How can love and truth be spread? How do we stop the hate? How do we help look outside of materialism and see our worth not just in our goods but how we learn, how we love, and how we care?

Saturday, April 21, 2007

the beginning of something new

rain on the windowpane and a warm mug in my hands

I sat and listened to the rain today. I turned off whatever i was listening to and listened to the rain as I drank coffee out of a mug and read the Death of Modernism. I hoped the rain would ease my soul as i trudged through the difficult reading.

I realize that change happens a lot and I am glad that things do change. In my attempt at post lent I realized that stopping things doesn't mean running from them or just halting from their consumption. Sometimes it means putting your face right into the mess and starring at it with eyes wide open. You need to Test your feelings, try new angles, really looking at the issue without drowning the sorrow. I feel like I woke up and am seeing with new eyes. I wanted to stop thinking about ________ and I needed to think, pray, and indulge. The logic didn't make sense but that's how I made sense and eventually peace.

So I am moving on. I don't think I am ready to return to my indulgences but my relationship with the spiritual as wrapped me in a warm blanket and given me a mug to drink out of and the rain to listen to.

Tomorrow Rosie Thomas and Denison Witmer are playing at Fuller. With a bit of work the night should be great. I am really looking forward to spending the evening listening to the wisdom and also what seems like the melody of my past. I feel like these artists are such a large part of the history.

I pray that I continue to press on and press forward in love and ligh