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Monthly Archives: August 2012

birthday at brent’s

brents

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all of the college roommates met at brent’s last saturday to celebrate leslie’s birthday with breakfast & catching up. brent’s biscuits are good but time with these friends was even better. so thankful for the life that we’ve shared so far & the adventures that are to come. happy birthday, les! hope this year is full of life & joy & beautiful surprises. we love you big.

p.s. thanks to emily for the pictures. as usual.

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we are loved

happy monday, y'all.

this little print has been with me the past four places I’ve lived. usually in a place where I’ll see it every day. it makes me smile… something about the idea of a guy yelling beautiful truth towards someone who looks so discouraged.

growing up in Southern church culture, the idea of humans as inherently sinful was very familiar to me. & I still believe that this is true. but I’ll never forget one day in college, listening to a guy sitting on a stool towards the front of the room my church was meeting in. he explained that although he had a hard time accepting it, ultimately his identity before God was that he was loved… that God had loved him before he was born, that God loved him now, during his sin… & that God would still continue loving him after sin was no more. this simple truth blew my mind that morning & has been gradually reshaping my identity ever since. yes, I am–we are–desperately sinful, prone to wander. but before & in & after that, we are deeply loved by God. this is comfort & hope & peace… this is grace. this is reason to rejoice.

p.s. I also love what mary karr writes about communion in sinners welcome:
“‘you are loved,’ said someone. ‘take that & eat it.'”

seventeen

17 was a big year for me. I graduated from high school a year early, got a full time job, really began exploring who God was, & fell into community for the very first time. in fact, I’ve often told people that 17 has been the best year of my life so far. when I was 17 everything felt brand new. every year since has been wild & wonderful & very very hard. but 17 still has a very special place in my heart.

when I was 17 I also started keeping a journal for the very first time. it ranged from concrete accounts of daily activities to abstract prayers. 5 years later, I have 9 neatly stacked volumes sitting on my bookshelf. they encompass a dizzying variety of experiences. there are entries that make absolutely no practical sense when I go back & read them, pages stained with tears, a dozen different colored inks, & entries scribbled on napkins tucked between the pages. when I’m posed with the whole hypothetical “if your house was burning what would you take?” scenario, the answer is this little stack. hands down.

every birthday I sit down with my pile of journals & read about each birthday before it. & sometimes I do this on random days, too. earlier this week I sat down & read about my past five August 15ths. & apparently August 15 has been a historically low day in the life of Ruth Ann. everything I read was pretty rough–from being in high school, really confused about who God is… to being super nervous about starting college… to experiencing extreme hurt in relationships… to going through some pretty nasty culture shock. the pages all reflected times when I was worried, anxious, overwhelmed, confused, helpless– times I felt that God was distant.

this year’s August 15th was not so great either. there are so many things that continue to confused & overwhelm me. to live is an awfully big task & attempting to do it well is really hard sometimes. but you know what? sitting in my bed with all of those journals open, I realized… in every single instance, things turned out just fine. I’m still some days confused about who God is… but he has been so faithful to pursue me & teach me. I made friends in college & had four good, good years. the culture shock subsided & taught me so much. & the list goes on & on.

reading back over five years of highs & lows quieted & comforted me.  despite what I might experience in the middle of any one particular plot arc, the whole big 9 volume story of my life screams these words found in the book of hebrews: “he who has promised is faithful.” & as if he knew we would ask “but what about in the meantime?” the author simply urges us to “hold fast & not waver.”

so… when life is painful & overwhelming, here’s to holding on tight & digging your heels in… to not wavering… to breathing deep & resting easy in the faithful yahweh God who keeps his promises. even in the midst of circumstances that seem scary & out of control.

p.s. I think I am going to plan something fun for august 15th next year.

black & white

:: when it rains outside, we play chess at recess. the kids get super into it, too. that’s how IB schools roll.

:: went to hear some music on the porch at the cedars with jenna & patrick. it’s been a little cooler at night this week though… enjoying that bunches.

:: a little bit about the history behind this famous black power image at the 1968 olympics. interesting stuff.

:: for lunch the other day I brought little ziplock baggies of spinach, carrots, cherries, strawberries & almonds. I took my lunch out to the playground to eat… a little kid ran up to scope out my food, wrinkled his nose & said “ummm, ms. broom, is that what people would call a ‘healthy snack’?” why yes, yes it is.

:: excited about this 5k.

:: david & I both made chalkboards for our rooms… piece of plywood, can of chalkboard paint, presto. same result but a whole bunch cheaper. I would very much like a whole chalkboard wall but for now this will do just fine.

:: sometimes textbooks are silly.

:: this is my first real saturday as in after a full real-world work week. it’s been spent so far at the farmers market, making breakfast & helping emily figure out her new blog. weekends are good stuff.

a little bit of august

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Untitled       & these are a few of my favorite things.

Untitled        king of the jungle.

sleepover with the dennis kids. david is home from alaska. trying to put my house back together (it’s going pretty slowly). beautiful little kiddos coming up to me in the hallway & shyly whispering ‘hola senorita.’ goodbye party for some of my favorite people at koinonia. oliver in town on the way to south korea! splitting cheesecake with helen. surprise dinner with mom & sister. secret trail adventures with david. lesson planning. labeling 287 popsicle sticks. nap time.

life is so full. I might be the teacher, but I have a lot to learn about margin & balance & what’s important. a lot to learn about trust & rest. thankful for the God who teaches… gently, faithfully, persistently.

first day

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today was my very first day of public school… & I was the teacher. it was crazy & new & teachers stand more than I thought. but to make a long story short it was very, very good. my children are smart & spirited & so wonderful. & the other teachers are so kind & wise. I’m thankful to get to live a little bit of life with this group of people… here’s to the first first day!

p.s. at the end of the day when it was hot & I was tired…
a first grader walked up to me and said, “who are you? you pretty.”
hahaha… thanks, kiddo. I’ll take it.

cooling off

from chocolate milk to homemade fudgesicles. mmmm.

my popsicle molds from Amazon finally came in last week & I have been getting a very lot of use out of them. mostly, I’ve just been freezing my farmer’s market chocolate milk… drinking milk when it’s hot makes me feel weird, but when you freeze this chocolate milk it makes really yummy fudgesicle type things. actually I don’t even like fudgesicles but I like these.

I also made a peach/white grape juice combo. I love just putting real fruit in the blender, mixing it with a little juice and/or honey & freezing it. so good. I have some watermelon chilling in my fridge for the next batch… & I really want to try avocado popsicles. the heat seems to have kicked it up a notch these past  couple weeks… & eating popsicles is one of the only things that makes my front porch tolerable. thanks, Amazon!