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[28 Dec 2010|10:39pm]
2010 deserves reflection, and the immediate approach of 2011 is not entirely promising, but it does offer some hope.

NKOTBSB. June 3rd. DC. 3 days before Camp starts.
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[07 Apr 2010|12:48pm]
It has taken until April 7th, but today may have been the day that 2010 FINALLY took an upswing.
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[16 Mar 2010|10:53pm]
Dear 2010:

With few exceptions, you have sucked. Royally.
The past 5 days have also not been any sort of fun.
This could be a long 9 months if you don't get your act together.

-The Mgmt
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RMG: [15 Feb 2010|11:12pm]
As unbelievably difficult as this year has been, I am eternally thankful for incredible friends:

The day you stop having revelations is the day you stop learning.
The day you stop learning is the day you stop growing.
The day you stop growing you stop living.
And the day you stop living is a sad day indeed.

Indeed, my friends. Indeed.
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[27 Dec 2009|11:50pm]
"Sometimes you have to love what's good for you."

&: "Yeah, but -- everything's shallow on the surface."

Completely unrelated....completely true....life is close to beautiful, in the most real kind of way. close. tonight, anyway.
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[04 Nov 2009|02:14am]
Possibility's sweet aroma continued to interrupt any hope of sleep I had at an earlier hour this evening.
Maybe the stars are aligning, though all around me, the one's that others have wished upon are spinning out of orbit. Maybe I, too, will crash and burn, leaving a blazing tail as the only sign that I was once in this place, and am now far, far from it, emotionally speaking. I suppose what matters, and that could be argued either way, is whether or not you are above or below that tail, that trail of light and dirt and dust and energy. Because you're still always ahead of it, yourself.
Sleep, take 2.
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wake me up when _________ ends.... [16 Oct 2009|01:17am]
Dad: It's like you're the kid who is watching the King pass by naked.
Me: Yep, and I can't say anything. Cause the king will get pissed and behead me and everyone else around me will be incredibly uncomfortable.
Dad: At least you know that the parade will end for you.
Me: In 8 months....
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ELCA history [22 Aug 2009|12:16am]
I watched history happen in the church I grew up in today, from a live-feed video streaming a national assembly of a 1000 voting members in a different time-zone, and a different climate.
I will do the next 51 weeks of my internship in a church that is different than the one i did my first.
There will, heartbreakingly, be division in the church before there is unity, but there is now inclusion and equality on this earth, as there must be in the kingdom we pray to come. God's kingdom came a little closer today.
On a day when I slept in, had cable installed, drank my coffee without milk, went to a cookout where i ate pasta salad and hot dogs, people cried tears of joy and tears of agony.

We live in the grey.
In the mess.
In grace.
In hope.
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day 2 [18 Aug 2009|10:42pm]
[ mood | lonely ]

Today's distractions from the hole inside of me included small children who were strangers but hugged me anyway and old ladies who were silly but had opinions about everything.
Preschool chapel will be fun because it's apparently tradition for the [younger] children to run up and hug Pastor when it's over. We sing, talk about Jesus, sing, hug, and return to our regularly scheduled lives and areas of the building. But unexpected hugs from little arms and bright eyes made the morning brighter.
We immediately went to Bible study with a little group of call. They will be easy to come to love.

I wonder if I'm coming to love the people at LSLC quicker because there is a pile of the un-returned kind in my heart that I don't know what to do with, or because they really are that wonderful. Regardless, I am grateful for their kindness and becoming more comfortable in this place each day.

In other news: We mutually decided to break up, Sunday, after I had decided I wanted to work through whatever it was that was wrong and called him out on the distant behavior. But you can't work out feelings that aren't there. You can't catch up with someone who loves you when all they are to you is a "really great person." He was honest, and a gentlemen, and painful and pain-filled. I miss him. I still seem to be less hung up on the fact that we are actually no longer a we and more on the his reason why. When it hurts a little less, I'll post for memory sake.
Until then, I just keep trying to ignore the things that make me think of him the most.

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in which Sarah doesn't make any sense [14 Aug 2009|11:29pm]
I really hope I didn't incriminate myself on the phone tonight. That I didn't predict the future by speaking what it is I'm feeling to someone who isn't either you or I, and therefore potentially cementing my bias already.

But, truthfully, I don't feel like I'm being impacted anymore. And it isn't fair that I haven't been around or available to you for a length of time for you to actually be ABLE to impact me [also true]. But that time is over, and here we are, and yet, you're not there. Well, no, you are -- to say you're unavailable or uninterested would be, i think, incorrect. But there's a lackluster about what I see of myself in you anymore.

I'm clinging to a few things, right now. A few rays of hope, when it comes to this.

Perhaps it's that I've changed -- grown -- this summer, and it has to sink in to those who are closest to me. After all, if I believe that I am who I am because you are who you are and we impact each other, than, I need to wait for my new "am" to impact your "are" before your "are" will contribute to my "am" again. It sounds so formulaic, but it's a progressive effort with no time length.
Perhaps it's that I don't always do well during times of transition and new beginnings, and this is affecting me more than you realize, and therefore affecting us. Miscommunication, at best, I suppose?
I'm still trying to decide if I am needy or demanding, and this has been a personal flaw of mine that has become heightened in your awareness of me, just as your flaws have become more visible in my perspective.

Personal change is a good thing; not to be used as an ultimatum, but as a way to progress a relationship. But it cannot be forced from one person to the other. The situation does become tricky when one person is ready for change or has changed and the other clings to their comfort zones. I've been in both of those roles many times before; some friendships have survived stronger than others.

There are, of course, other outside influences on all of this as well. The timing of certain restrictions being lifted in a short amount [comparably] of time; the reminder of other really great friendships that seem to boomerang just when I least expected but often most needed them to; the support that you give seems more and more shallow -- you are owning or claiming any of it for yourself, except to support me, which seems backwardly selfish.

None of this makes any sense.
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Northern Skies have different stars [08 Jul 2009|12:50am]
traveling up the highway on North 31
to the town where I grew up called Ludington
but I'm still a long way off from Pier Marquette Road
with plenty of time to think about life
call up my friends, see what they're doing tonight
but I'll falling fast asleep to the radio
and I thank God for the person who
invented rumble strips

pass my parents' house make a beeline for the bar
the local brewery where all my friends are
I've gotta drink three scottish strongs just to catch up
there's plent of time to talk about life between
drinking it up and ordering another pint
but I've gotta be in church in the morning
to thank God for forgiveness
and the comforts of coming back home
to northern skies

sunday afternoon at my grandparents' farm
wanna take the dog out for a walk to the pond
but summer's still a long way off from february
and this town always dies in the midwinter sun
hopes for tourism have already begun
but I'm just grateful for the snow surrounding me
and I thank God for reflection
and the chance to hibernate
in northern skies

now I always take a trip to lake michigan
where I've swam in her waters a million times before
but this time of year even the lighthouse is frozen over
and this town reminds me of good memories
days of my youth far back as I can see
but I know that I can't live here any longer
so I thank God for that little yellow house
and the comforts of coming back home
to Northern skies

-copyright Drake, lyrics thanks to Emily on a piece of ripped out journal paper, this evening
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i'm more comfortable driving over the mountain now [24 Jun 2009|04:42pm]
From a saved draft at a preaching conference I attended near the beginning of my "Sarah's EastCoast Tour":
"Preachers need to spend more time with artists"

I hope my identity never splits in two. Perhaps this is exactly where I am supposed to be. perhaps.

That was an amazing experience, and is perhaps one that is better left to emails and conversations in which you can hear the passion in my voice and the excitement when I discuss the reality that I'm joining a collective group with members who really might think exactly like I do.

However, this post is intended to share a bit of camp life. Since arriving here in the woods 25 days ago, I've:
-gone canoeing 13 miles on the shenandoah river, seeing a bald eagle, cows in the river, dragonflies mating, and jumping fish
-been poured on, specifically while camping out overnight after previous river trip, for nearly 36 hours at a time
-tye-dyed, and successfully
-driven a golf cart that had hand-controls and will have a soon-to-arrive racing-harness installed
-received a few lettters, mailed a few letters, and made fewer phone calls
-met and have continued working with a staff of 14 other young adults, 4 of whom come from other corners of the globe (Columbia, Jamaica, India and Papua New Guinea), discussing theology related to Service and much more
-led worship, prayer and bible studies for staff and campers, my favorite being the staff
-fallen in love with a few of the campers because they are beautiful people, small in body and maturity, but larger than life usually
-begun realizing what it is like to be a Pastoral presence in a specific community of people
-missed someone incredibly, but have had incredible realizations
-named the toad who lives by my cabin and hangs out on my porch Pete
-encountered 3 bears who were up in a tree by myself and managed to not piss myself before someone else came
-relearned the art of turning string into treasured bracelets and songs into hours of entertainment
-repeated a similar occurence last night, with the addititonal chase to remove said bear from cabin-village area after dark

It is well with my soul.
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random musings [05 May 2009|12:31am]
I should be in bed.
I have ridiculously mixed emotions about the next and upcoming...4 months.
I can't wait to be on the other side of through: this week, the next 3 weeks, this summer. Then slow down again, please.
I think there's a light at the end of the tunnel.
I've gone through almost half a ream of paper in the last two weeks and I'm not done, yet.
I have some incredible people in my life.
I still miss this incredible friend, Ryan, who is not anymore in this life.
I am ready for some answers about memory and electricity in the brain and a solution.
I love the feeling of crossing things off my to do list.
I don't know if I crossed enough off today.
I will live with it, regardless.
I read Psalm 23 tonight, and will never read it the same again.
I miss writing for writing sake and reading for reading sake.
I crave tangible creativity.
I came close to my hug quota today.
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confession: he watches commercials [19 Apr 2009|11:10pm]
This is me, not telling my faithful readers [nor myself in 3 months] the context

Bauer: "yes, your boyfriend did just say, 'The man was not handling his mutton-chops very well'."
Sarah: "you just re-said that. again. this trumps your admitting to watching Spongebob."

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And I'm sure the view from heaven beats the hell out of mine here.... [16 Apr 2009|07:16am]
May angels lead you in, dear Ryan:

I can't find words to do him justice --
We called him "Sunshine" because he always looked like he was pissed; but when we got a genuine laugh or smile out of him, it lit up our hearts. This is a perfect example. I could kick him for dying. He was like a little brother: able to annoy the shit out of me and yet I loved him to pieces. He had a funny way of showing it, but he had a passion and zeal for God and the church that is rare to find in people our age, or ever.
He's playing wii games for eternity, singing in the choir with his dad, and will deeply deeply missed from my life and this community.

And when from death I’m free, I’ll sing on, I’ll sing on;
And when from death I’m free, I’ll sing on.
And when from death I’m free
I’ll sing His love for me,
And through eternity I’ll sing on, I’ll sing on,
And through eternity I’ll sing on.
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[15 Apr 2009|02:27pm]
grief and the shock of it has this funny way of making it feel like you're looking at the world from a distance, swimming through jello, and have sunscreen eyes, all at the same time.
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[02 Apr 2009|12:15am]
You know it's been a ridiculouslylongweek when you get yourself ready before bed....

And your roommate walks in 10 minutes later to ask why you've just brewed a pot of coffee. You look at her like she's from Mars, because you don't even really remember getting the coffee maker set up.

come on, Spring Break/Holy Week.
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&this is grace... [30 Mar 2009|10:21am]
I don't often post song lyrics anymore. Perhaps it's because I haven't come across a song that I felt would tap others' hearts the way it has mine? Perhaps I just don't think about it, listen closely enough, or remember when I have a few quiet moments to reflect.
But since this song played on my itunes a while back this morning, I've been sitting in contemplative silence.

For your own weary souls and hearts, friends:

Add to the Beauty -- Sara Groves

We come with beautiful secrets
We come with purposes written on our hearts, written on our souls
We come to every new morning
With possibilities only we can hold, that only we can hold

Redemption comes in strange place, small spaces
Calling out the best of who we are

And I want to add to the beauty
To tell a better story
I want to shine with the light
That's burning up inside

It comes in small inspirations
It brings redemption to life and work
To our lives and our work

It comes in loving community
It comes in helping a soul find it's worth

Redemption comes in strange places, small spaces
Calling out the best of who we are

And I want to add to the beauty
To tell a better story
I want to shine with the light
That's burning up inside

This is grace, an invitation to be beautiful
This is grace, an invitation

Redemption comes in strange places, small spaces
Calling out our best

And I want to add to the beauty
To tell a better story
I want to shine with the light
That's burning up inside
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perhaps this day will mean something in 6 months or a year [17 Mar 2009|11:46pm]
It seems fitting that things would culminate this evening, on the night of the lucky, between us. It was the next natural progression, though words and conversation will be cherished for a while, and the publicity of it all will probably be less than public (with this, and a phone call home) as the exception.

And, it's incredible the amount of work I can get done when there are slightly other ulterior motives behind wanting a free night.
And also: I want to be in Ann Arbor tomorrow night so badly it's not funny.
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Reflections on Confirmation Day because I probably won't do it outloud [14 Mar 2009|10:29pm]
It's a bit funny what you learn about yourself when you're working on a committee, or with others in general, especially if it's for a purpose that most will at least project to be something greater than themselves.
And it's funny how you yourself interact differently, depending on those around you.

Because life, really, is all about relationships, interactions, intersections of lives, and the stuff in between them. Everything else is just a wrapping to be discarded after it clutters the floor of your car for a while.

I learned, though, that I know more about working with youth than I thought I did, and I get surprised when others simply don't. Not a judgment, but surprised -- because children are such an integral part of...life. They might be my favorite kind of relationships.
I learned that I can get the too-cool-for-school kids to participate. [yes!]
I learned that organizing and planning worship might become a gift of mine, but it's still in need of a lot of fine tuning and conceptualizing within me.
[I also learned, however, if you plan something... be prepared to answer questions people already know the answer to. And be prepared to take their shit when you don't tell them the same answer they already know.]

I remembered how much I like to teach others songs -- and that I can forget how conscious I am of my own voice when it's among others.
I remembered how much I love the sound of people singing with me.
I remembered that worship is worship is worship, and quite frankly, in the end, that's all that matters. I learned that I will need to keep remembering that.

It's been a long and fulfilling day. But even the extrovert in me was tired when all was said and done.
I was tangibly productive, caught up with a few friends, missed a few others, and regretted agreeing to teach Sunday School tomorrow.
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