Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Start Somewhere

So let's talk about how Ryanhood is coming out with a new album. It's basically the best news ever. 

You should click this link, An Open Letter To Friends of Ryanhood, to pre-order the new album, Start Somewhere. And then, if you live in Tucson, you should go to their show at the Rialto on November 2 where it will be released (which I happen to be selling tickets for - leave a comment if you want one!). 

It's not just good music. It's their heart, and it's good for the soul.

Not a sponsored post, ya'll. I just really love these guys.

Friday, October 11, 2013

When the Weather Changes

As I walk around campus today, there is a crisp breeze weaving itself between the buildings and through the union, rippling the leaves on the trees and whistling as it wraps around students heading to their classes. There is a chill on my skin, and all day I've been wishing that I had worn something just a little thicker than this tank top. 

Fall is coming. 
I can say with absolute certainty that there will be an indian summer and, for a few more days (let's be honest - it'll probably be weeks), I'll be back to shorts and despising having to walk around outside. 

But there's something in the air. Girls have already broken out scarves and boots, and all around I see people drinking their hot Starbucks drinks and relishing the warmth of the cups in their hands as this lovely breeze curls around them. 

It's an expectancy. 
For months and months, we've been sweating and swearing and trying to fend off heat stroke and cringing when the electricity bill arrives but resigning ourselves to it because you either pay it or pass out from the heat - come on guys, it's Tucson. 

But now, it's October. As the ripples of the wind dance through the air, it's almost like I can hear a soft whisper saying "I've been waiting for you."

Because all summer, I've been moving. I've been pushing forward and pressing on and trying to get through. Trying to get through the hurt and the healing and the learning and the growing - man, has it been a hard year. 

I've always associated the summertime with falling in love - even when I was in middle school, I would read Sarah Dessen novels about sixteen year olds and their summer adventures of finding love and to me, that's always what the summer meant. And then I really did fall in love in the summertime, and I spent the next two years falling in love over and over again, giving my heart away to a person and to dreams and to passions and to desires. 

And then this year, I spent the summer trying to fall out of love. Which was painful and a lot of hard work and, for a lot of reasons, seemed totally wrong.
I've lived my entire life believing that you should fall in love as much as you can, with as many people and things and places and passions as you can. Believing that that was how you found joy and purpose and wholeness in life, that love is the only thing that matters. 

But what I'm learning now, now that summer is ending and autumn is starting to peek ever-so-shyly around the corner, is that I was wrong.

You give your heart away to the things you fall in love with - to the people, to the things, to the thoughts, to the dreams; they all take a little piece of you with them because really, you give yourself to them.

I've given my heart away to a lot of things. To a lot of people. And I've been broken by almost all of them. Some people have taken pieces of my heart and completely destroyed them.
But Jesus is gentle, and gracious, and like that song goes that everyone in the entire Christian culture knows - His love never fails.

So as pumpkin-spice-everything and brown knee-high boots are taking over my campus, I'm learning how to let Jesus take over my heart. How to be more in love with Jesus than anything - or ANYONE - else. How to make Jesus my only choice.

Sometimes it looks as simple as not saying anything when someone annoys me during the day - or not gossiping about it with my roommates when I come home. Sometimes it looks as complicated as choosing, that day, to forgive the person who hurt me more than anyone else ever has. Sometimes it's as short and sweet as praying for someone that it hurts me to think about.

It's complicated. And messy. And not easy to define.
 But it's walking out "being a Christian" - for real.

I don't know about you, but I'm so thankful that the seasons change.

"Whoever finds his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it." - Matthew 10:39