Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Opening My Hands

Recently a verse has been running through my mind but I didn't stop to look it up until I ran across the reference in my BSF notes this morning. Luke 12:48 says this: "... the one who does not know and does things deserving punishment will be beaten with few blows. From everyone who has been given much, much will be demanded; and from the one who has been entrusted with much, much more will be asked." 

I have been given much. I do not make this statement to take pride in any accomplishments, rather to acknowledge the opportunities and experiences I have been allowed to have. As a result of the country and family I was born into, the people who have pointed and are pointing me to Jesus Christ, the discipline that was given to me, the ethics and morals that have been instilled in me, the education I have received and am receiving, the guidance, conviction and encouragement of the Holy Spirit, the accessibility to the Word of God, the prayer support of consistent and loving grandparents, the financial provision of parents who supply for my needs and then continue to give abundantly, the excellent biblical teaching I have received and am receiving, and so much more has made me into a far from perfect but nonetheless faithful follower of God and a healthy, capable, responsible individual. 

In my 22 years of life, I have had it pretty easy. I have never been in want of food, shelter or clothing, never had to fear abusive parents or watch them waste their life away on alcohol, never had to experience the pain of my parents getting a divorce or the loss of an immediate family member. It is often easy for me to kick back in my suburban home and eat from the abundance in our kitchen, sleep the hours away in a cozy bed, bask in the comfort of a warm house and hot showers, entertain myself from a wealth of books, access to any genre of music, the internet, Cable TV and multiple movies and forget about the atrocious suffering that many in my city, country and world are experiencing during my oblivious moments. 

I have been given much and much will be demanded of me. In I Peter 2:9 I find what is demanded of me: "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light." I am a chosen, royal, holy child of God. He beckons me to dedicate myself to Him and open my hands that He may fill them with His work. 

I am opening my hands and looking to God to fill them. Please pray with me that God will give me the courage to only do the work He places in them. 

Monday, January 26, 2009

Discovering Wonders At The IHS

Last week Nealy got her second tour of Indianapolis. Here was her itinerary:

Stop #1: Boyden's Bakery
Stop #2: City Cafe
Stop #3: Indiana Historical Society
Stop #4: The Flying Cupcake
Stop #5: Rocky Ripple, IN
Stop #6: Global Gifts
Stop #7: Downtown Antique Mall
Stop #8: Southport Antique Mall
Stop #9: Yollie's Oriental Market 

You should already know of the wonders that Boyden's has to offer so I will skip that to highlight a few of our other destinations. In the last few months I have been driving by the Indiana Historical Society on West and Ohio thinking of how I need to stop and see what it has to offer. Before doing so last week, I took a visit to their website. I discovered that it has historical exhibits, a library and a bookstore. 

During my research of this historical wonderland I was really beginning to anticipate a visit. But upon our entrance, we received some disappointing news - except for the library, the building was closed due to remodeling. However, this turned out to be a good thing as we spent over an hour reading quotes on the lobby floor and exploring the library. 
Here is a quote from The Indiana Book of Trivia by Fred Cavinder describing Indiana's 1907 solution to stopping stupid people from running rampant: "About 120 sterilizations were performed in Indiana under a 1907 law that permitted the procedure to curb reproduction by criminals, idiots, rapists and imbeciles. A sterilization victim's lawsuit overturned the law." 

As chuckles escape your mouth, a question may be tickling your brain. "What classifies an idiot or an imbecile?" The American Heritage Dictionary gives these definitions: 

Idiot - n. 1. A foolish or stupid person. 2. A person of profound mental retardation having a mental age below three years and generally being unable to learn connected speech or guard against common dangers. The term belongs to a classification system no longer in use and is now considered offensive. 

Imbecile - n. 1. A stupid or silly person; a dolt. 2. A person whose mental acumen is well below par. 3. A person of moderate to severe mental retardation having a mental age of from three to seven years and generally being capable of some degree of communication and performance of simple tasks under supervision. The term belongs to a classification system no longer in use and is now considered offensive. 

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Geek Alerts Is Back, With Some Tofu

I just found this amusing curio on my beloved Geek Alerts site which I thought had been shut down as of January 12, 2009. Apparently, they changed their minds. For this I am sure we can all be thankful after watching such a blithe, waggish movie clip.

To find out more about the MIT designed Tofu you can visit this site.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Thoughts From The Dome

Numerous thoughts have been running through this dome of mine in the last couple of days. I'm hoping I can get them to march into this text in some semblance of order for you all to understand. 

Right before getting on-line to start typing this post I was reading World Aflame by Billy Graham. I am only on the thirty-first page and so far have gleaned a tremendous amount of insight from this book. The last section I read was entitled Leisure. Most often leisure is talked of in pleasant terms but the intent of this two-page talk on leisure was to warn of its dangers. 

Billy Graham has pointed out that modern American life with its many technological advances has produced an abundance of leisure time. "With more leisure and less responsibility, the problem of 'what to do' assumes major proportions... The rapid growth of leisure could produce more crime... We see this potential of crime already among us in the vandalism of unoccupied youth. We see it in the cocktail lounges where the bored and restless while away the tedious hours of leisure. We see it in the nightclubs where jaded and frustrated businessmen watch sensual performers go through their frenzied routines, leaving their audiences empty, frustrated, and satiated. All of us have read stories of the boredom suffered at the average cocktail party. I have had more than one wealthy person tell me: 'If I have to go to one more cocktail party, I'll blow my brains out.'" 

To help prove his point that too much leisure can be undesirable, Billy Graham uses this quote from Shakespeare: "If all the years were playing holidays, to sport would be as tedious as to work."

The topic of leisure is of particular interest to myself at this point in my life because it is something that I will have in an exceeding amount for the next couple of months. As many of you know, I am taking a semester off from school because I couldn't get into the classes I needed. What a fitting time to read of the dangers of too much leisure!

You may now wonder what I plan to do with my months of leisure. Assuming that you do care, I will explain my plans, but I warn you they may get overwhelming. Well maybe not to you but in my mind they can sometimes be a bit overwhelming due to me constantly thinking of various options and numerous variations to each option all the while trying to take each plan to the Lord. 

Sometime during the holiday season I began compiling a list that I dubbed "Things I want to do with my 'free time'". The list includes things that absolutely need to be done such as applying for and securing an internship for this summer as well as things that I have long wanted to do but have not yet done due to of a lack of time or pure laziness. Unfortunately, I lost my original list and some items have slipped my memory but here is my attempt to patch the list back together:

  1. Learn to play the harmonica
  2. Read Dead Women Walking
  3. Go to Florida
  4. Go to Cincinnati and visit Jungle Jim's and Graeter's
  5. Create fabric
  6. Experiment with Photoshop
  7. Experiment with InDesign
  8. Experiment with Illustrator
  9. Set up an Etsy seller account
  10. Finish my Italy scrapbook
  11. Make Coca-Cola table
  12. Create an identity for Phenomenal Women 
  13. Polish up portfolio
  14. Secure an internship for the summer
  15. Make salmagundi 
  16. Ride the Indy Go
  17. Go to as many BSF seminars as possible
  18. Visit as many historical sites as possible (primarily in Indiana)
There you have my patched up list. I know there are many more worthy items on my original list and it is frustrating me that I cannot find it. Nonetheless, I have plenty of things to do with my months of leisure. However, in the past couple of weeks I have noticed myself developing a lackadaisical attitude. I have placed no demands on my schedule and I have to admit that I have enjoyed too much sleep, TV, browsing the internet, running pointless errands, etc. 

I have a few ideas of how I can correct this behavior but since this post has possibly put some of you to sleep already, I'll save those ideas and hopefully an optimistic progress report for another time. 


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

My New Favorite Place!

On Christmas day Courtney received a card stating that she was the recipient of a personalized,  expense-covered tour of Indianapolis with myself as her tour guide. She probably didn't realize what a treasure she had received until she actually went on her tour this past Saturday. Here is a little rundown of her personalized tour:

Stop #1: The Bean Cup
Stop #2: Boyden's Bakery
Stop #3: Hendricks Park
Stop #4: Henry's On East
Stop #5: Taylor's Bakery
Stop #6: Flowing Well Park
Stop #7: Indiana Medical History Museum

Although each destination, minus Taylor's, was a success, the one that left the greatest impact on my life was 
Boyden's Bakery. It's a small little shop connected to an Italian restaurant off of Meridian and Hanna. This establishment has been there since 1932 which means that it has been there the whole time I have lived in Indy! I am ashamed of the fact that I had not entered its doors until this past Saturday. I have driven past this bakery too many times to count as it is now on my way to church and can be on 
my way to school. 

Courtney and I began to make our amends to the bakery by returning the very next day on our way to church. I am seriously considering stopping in every Sunday to pick up a honey bar or two. The beautiful thing is they are only $. 39! Mmm, I cannot get over these things. 

Sunday, January 11, 2009

I'd Rather Be In Smocktown!

I have always been content living on the north side of County Line Road. In fact, I have preferred the fact that I have lived on the north side of County Line for the past ten years. The simple fact of living on the north side of County Line means that I am a citizen of Indianapolis, not Greenwood. For the first time, I had the desire to live on the south side of County Line - 185 years ago. You see, if I would have lived on the opposite side of the road at that time I would not have lived in Indianapolis but I also wouldn't have lived in Greenwood. I would have lived in Smocktown! Smocktown was the original name of Greenwood. Smocktown underwent a name change in 1825 before eventually becoming Greenwood in 1833. You can go to this website to find out the name between Smocktown and Greenwood as well as more history on Smocktown and other Indianapolis suburbs and neighborhoods.

Friday, January 9, 2009

A Bit More Info And An Update

Grandma and Grandpa are up in Madison with Wendy and Grandma sent me this information and update today:

There were some points protruding from her spinal column touching her brain causing the spinal fluid not to flow as it should therefore giving headaches, etc. The Dr. had said that there wasn't enough room for her brain before this surgery. The Dr. went in and removed those jagged points and then took off the covering over her brain, took skin from her neck and made a new covering that was bigger therefore giving her brain more room. She has an incision about 3-4 inches down the back of her neck with most of it going up into her hair line. They had to shave about 1 1/2 by 5 or so of her hair. It is bandaged right now and her neck is very sore. She is still in ICU hoping to get to a room sometime today. 

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Pray For Wendy

Tomorrow morning, or this morning rather, Mom's cousin Wendy is having surgery. I'm not any where near as informed as I should be on the surgery to be making this post but I felt the need to put out a request and a reminder for you to lift Wendy up in prayer as she goes into her surgery, is in surgery and comes out of surgery. It is my prayer that she will feel an overwhelming sense of God's presence and His peace as she goes into her surgery.  

Wendy headed up to Madison, Wisconsin today and the surgery will be on Thursday morning. She is having surgery on her head and although I can't remember any technical names, I know it is pretty major. She suffers from daily migraines and I cannot imagine how much she must be longing for relief from that. The doctors are hoping that she will be able to go back home after four days. 

If anyone knows more information about the surgery, please share and make up for my lack of knowledge! Otherwise just pray for peace and God's work to be accomplished which hopefully includes a successful surgery and relief from the pain Wendy has been experiencing. 

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

A Belated New Year's Resolution

I realize my lack of posts is pretty pathetic seeing as I haven't even had my blog for more than three months. In an effort to correct this fluky posting routine I have decided on a New Year's resolution to galvanize my blogging effort. Here it is: My aspiration, not promise, is to write a minimum of two posts a week, with at least one having some meaningful and perhaps beneficial content in it. 

To your right is an updated photo of my Buzzy tree. As you can see from my previous post, I planted Buzzy on December 28, 2008. It turns out that my Success Soil does quite miraculous work, I saw this rapid growth mere hours after sinking the seeds into the unparalleled richness of my Success Soil!