Wednesday, January 28, 2004

Well...
I've got about an hour before leah shows up about 2 hours before I need to leave for the airport and about 6 hours before I fly.
Last night was super cool. I didn't sleep...well maybe about 2 hours. But all the TAFE girls plus Amy were just hanging at heather and krystys. Man, it was so good. We laughed, we cried, we swore, we faught, we laughed some more, just like the good old days. We watched a home video of heathers of like when ALL the girls were here and basically of our summer. I have absolutely no regrets about everything. Most people have this whole "I want to live with no regrets" motto in life, and that's good, one of my favorite JK songs, but like seriously we're human, we screw up, and we're gonna have regrets. I guess I could think of a few things that I wish I would have done better while I was here, or with more passion, but over all I don't regret any of it.
Hm...I guess that's it. I guess the next time I write will be from the States. That's weird. weeeeeeeeeeeed.

Monday, January 26, 2004

I don't know what I'm doing here. I just got home from a long day out and about celebrating this wonderful nation. I should be in bed, but somehow I've wandered here. I think mostly because i'm in total mental and emotional chaos and venting here usually helps to clear things up...or at least get it out of my system.
I want to scream, I want to cry, I want to hit something and cry some more. I want to chuck the biggest tanty and get some fucking answers from God as to why this is happening. It sucks. It absolutely sucks.
You know what was one of the best things about today. We were in the city, right, George Street, like middle of the city heading towards the quay and I run into someone I know. Someone IIIIIIIII know. I ran into someone I know in Sydney. Someone that's from Sydney, that I go to church with, that went to college with me. I ran into her on the street. For the first time ever I wasn't the one standing around all awkward thinking "man I don't know anyone in this town except for the people I met on the internet". It's becoming home. It is home. Sure as hell more home than Dallas will ever be. And I'm leaving. And some people don't even seem to care.
I care. I cried getting the ferry back to Leah's. God, you did a good job with this place. It brings me to tears. And the worst part is I have no idea when I'll be back. The Bridge, the Opera House, the Harbour...it's so breath taking. Why would anyone leave? Oh, cause they're out of money. Right.

On the other hand, as much as I hate it and as much as it sucks I still have peace about going. That is the one thing that has not left me. He truely is the Prince of Peace. I've been having to eat, breath, and drink that peace because it seems it's all I've got right now.
It doesn't make any sense. Total chaos and total peace.
sigh.

There's so much more I could say.
I wish people would grow up and get real with life. Or am I just an "old soul"? Man I tell you what, life is too damn short to screw around with it, to waste it, to be miserable, and broken. There is an abundant life. There is wholeness. Might sound slightly odd coming from every I just said but even in the midst of all this I know who I am, I know my Creator, I know I am my Beloved's, and I absolutely know my life is abundant.

I really want to get a tatoo. I've got it all planned out. I might do it before I leave. My mom can't tell me to take a tatoo out. It'll be really cute and discreet, and this phrase, promise from God rather, has been my sanity. I think I will try to do it before I go. I'll check into it tomorrow. Amy will know a good tatoo parlor.

I'm going to take a shower and wash the layers of sweat off then to bed.
Farewell.

Oh and sorry if you were offended. Really I am. But it's my blog right?

Saturday, January 24, 2004

I had my first "what the hell, I'm going home" break down tonight. Very dramatic. It was at the end of church and it hit me like a ton of bricks. Krysty was looking at me trying to get my attention and saw the glazed "I'm about to burst like a dam" look in my eyes so then she lost it to. We finally got to eachother....I give up. Blogger hates me. I hate blogger. It's so fun having your spur of the moment venting emotions erased mid thought. Screw you blogger!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, January 23, 2004

less than a week to go and counting. Definitely counting. It's really confusing as to why I'm so anxious to get out of here. Maybe it's the fact that I really want to start working so I can start digging myself out of this debt. Maybe it's cause I know my time here is up. Maybe it's because the whole past 3 weeks have been like dying slowly as opposed to being shot in the head. Maybe it's because I just keep thinking of all the hugs waiting for me in America. Sorry if that sounds lame. But I can't wait to hug my mommy, and my daddy, and my brother, and my friends that I'm going to encounter along the way.
I really don't think the reality has set in yet. This is my last weekend in church. That makes my heart hurt. I really can't think about it too much. I really do believe it's the best church in the world. I mean I havent been to every church in the world, but I've been to a lot and it's got a lot going for it.
Now it's time for some complete and utter shallowness...

I got my hair cut, colored, and straightened today. I kind of went on a spending money rampage at the mall, you know, cause I have so much. But I REALLY needed to get my hair done, and this one salon has a promo for 6 free foils with a cut and style so there ya go. I had him straighten it for the style. I'm sorry but I am a stumbling block right now.
I also bought long shorts cause they are on sale here and we don't have them in America. I got a new purse for $10 cause it's time for me to grow up, and the one I have is falling apart. And last but not least I got "Home" from the Dixie Chicks. It was on a mad sale at HMV and I had a random dream about the Dixie Chicks last night and I'm in a really random blue grassy kinda mood. So there ya go. Vanity at it's finest.

I think I'm done. Thanks to everyone who's emailed me answers to the questions. I've been thinking that they're really lame recently. Like it just seems really obvious, like of course we relate to God the way we relate to humans, that's why we get screwed up perceptions of Him. But I think there's more to it than that. I don't know what I'm so passionate about all this right now, but we'll see what comes of it hey.
I'm off to run my fingers through my hair allllllllll night long, just cause I can.

Tuesday, January 20, 2004

The other day I was praying for a friend who has hit some rough terrain in her relationship with God. As I was praying I found myself asking these questions:

Why is it that people who have stable human relationship find themselves struggling with a “roller coaster” relationship with God?

Do we relate to God the same way we relate to human friends? Is there a connection?

If a person generally has dramatic, up-and-down human relationships, does the same apply to their relationship with God?

Does the level of relational skills a person has developed determine the intimacy of their relationship with God?

The final question really summarizes the first three questions, since they are basically all asking the same question just in different ways.
I briefly wrote these questions down in my journal with intentions of revisiting them at a time when I was NOT laying vainly in the sun. (Goes to prove a girl CAN hear from God whilst sun batheing.) Today I sat down in front of my computer wanting to build upon these thoughts and questions but immediately found myself lacking information and in the midst of a research project. (And it's not even for a grade! Inquiring minds just want to know!) So here's my first attempt at getting some information from real life people instead of the opinions and thoughts I form in my head. Have I ever mentioned how much I love my readers? The faithful and the occasional.
If you have time would you please copy and paste the following questions into an email, add your personal experience, thoughts, opinions, etc and send it back my way to knappycurls@hotmail.com. Just think of it as one of those lame "get to know me" surveys, but with some actual substance and purpose. Be as detailed or as general as you feel comfortable with. If you wouldn’t consider yourself “religious” or claim to having any kind of relationship to God please feel free to still answer the questions. You can let me know who you are or remain anonymous (if I know your email address, that might be tricky) but this information is definitely for my eyes only and won't be shown to anyone else without first getting your consent. With out further adu...

In regards to human relationships:

1. Do you consider yourself to be a good friend?

2. Have you been told by others that you’re a good friend?

3. Have you ever had an unresolved falling out with someone you considered to be a good friend?

4. Do you have a “best friend”? If so, how long have you known this person?

5. How many friends do you have that you would consider to be close friends?

6. When you disagree with friends do you generally:

a. Agree to disagree?
b. Allow the situation to escalate into an argument? If so do you generally:
1. Resolve the argument quickly? Drag the situation out?
2. Always feel you’re at fault? Always feel the other person is at fault?

7. Have you ever intentionally created conflict in a relationship for any reason?

8. On average, how much time do you spend communicating with close friends on a weekly basis?

9. Would you consider your close friendships to be stable? If yes, would you say they are continually growing and changing or that they stay the same? If no, why not?

10. Do you find it hard to maintain long distance relationships?

11. Do you consider yourself to be vulnerable with your closest friends?

12. Do you consider your closest friends to be vulnerable with you?

13. If you’re familiar with “love languages” what would you consider your primary love language?

14. Do you find it easiest to communicate with friends while sitting and chatting, doing something, in written form, or verbal but not face to face?

15. Would you consider one or both of your parents to be your friends on any level?

16. Do one or both of your parents have close friends that you’re aware of?



In regards to your relationship with God:

1. Do you have a relationship with God?
2. If yes to the above, would you consider it to be a good relationship?

3. Would you consider God to be a friend?

4. Do you talk to God? If yes how often?

5. Have you ever argued with God? If yes:

a. Were you able to resolve the conflict? How?
b. Did it positively or negatively effect your relationship in the long term?

6. Do you ever get mad at God for no reason or blame him for things that go wrong?

7. How long have you had a relationship with God?

8. Would you consider your relationship with God to be stable? If yes is it changing and growing or has it remained the same?

9. On average, how much time do you spend with God (this can take whatever form you consider to be “spending with God”) on a weekly basis?

10. What do you find the most fruitful way to communicate or spend time with God? (Ex: In a specific place daily, in nature, through music, etc.)

11. Would you say that God communicates to you?

12. Do you feel fulfilled in your relationship with God?

Friday, January 16, 2004

I feel like I've reverted to my senior year of high school. Kind of. Senior year I had no idea what I wanted to do and thought my life would become nothing if I didn't find something worthwhile, and quick. So I did YWAM. That bought me some time. And also lead me to Hills, and Sydney, which is where I was sure I would spend the rest of my life. That was my call. That was my purpose. Working with Jesus to save this city.
So here I am two weeks from leaving "my purpose" and I think the only difference between now and senior year is that I know no matter where I end up, or what I end up doing I know that I am sucessful, I do have value, I am living in God's will, and my self worth does not come from what I happen to be doing at the moment. (You learn that last lesson really quickly when you are scraping off wrappers glued with beer to the floor of the Superdome.)
It's just really weird because even though I haven't gotten very far into my dreams yet, it feels like I'm totally changing gears, and I am I guess, but I can't change gears like this every 3 years ya know. I need to choose something and go with it. I WANT to choose something and go with it. The problem comes in the choosing. "Go with your heart." "Seek God's perfect will." "Choose something and God will bless it." Right.
You know what my dream is? To be able to make a living working at a church. At my church, in Mesa. I really want to sit down with my senior pastor and my worship pastor and say, "Ok, I'm here for life. I need to finish uni, I want to start an arts academy to build the gifts of kids and people in the church but also to reach out to the community. Can you guarantee me a paid position in 3 years that will at least cover my food and rent." In my dreams right? Oh wait, I already said that was my dream. So then I think, ok do I go for a music major that will give me the skills I need to do something like that even if I end up working a job on the side to actually make money? Or do I get a degree that will make me money and do music on the side?
Then today I had this other thought. "I really would love to be a writer. I have so many thoughts and have so much I would love to try to express to the greater church body." Now, if you're a regular reader of this blog, you may not believe me but I was actually a pretty decent writer back in the day. If I got back into form and did a uni degree I could maybe pull it off. I would love to write for Relevant. Geez, don't toy with your emotions like that Mel. But then I wonder what the hell does writing have to do with serving my local church? How would it benefit them? I so have a passion for the local church. I want to build the kingdom through building MY church. You meet a lot of people around here that want the global, itinerate preacher, world renowned ministry. I really have no desire for that. I want to be part of an influencial church. I want to be part of a church with a big vision, but I don't need any of that for me personally.
The frustration is that right now I'm apart of a church that has got the balance of local and global influence perfected. It seems normal that our pastors are here one weekend and preaching to 100,000 people in Rio the next. However, they reached their position on the global scene by sowing into the local. They were faithful with the small, and through sowing into the local vision God gave them an opportunity to impact the larger church body.
So that takes me back to music, finishing that degree and trusting that God will continue to use those gifts and talents.
Sometimes I wish I was called into the business world. It's so much more concrete. It's so much more stable. Or even accounting or medicine or law or some kind of carreer path. Not fulltime ministry which is so abstract. At least when you say "I'm studing business" people know there is a concrete career path there. Not so much when you say, "Yeah I'm studing music and trusting God's got a plan".
I guess it doesn't bother me so much, as it bothers me having to constantly explain and find approval in others. hm..maybe that's something to think about.

In other news...

I went to the Jars of Clay concert tonight. I wasn't going to, but decided at the last minute. It was good. Probably the best I've ever seen them. Some things never change though. Poor Dan H. He just isn't much of a performer. None of them are actually but they are amazing musicians and that is pretty cool to watch.

Well I guess that's "it". I'm off to bed. Good night.

Wednesday, January 14, 2004

Tell me if this is weird. This morning I'm lying in bed reading "Watchman Prayer" by Dutch Sheets. (Which I highly recommend...very funny...very insightful) He was talking about listening to God in prayer not just going blaaaaaaaaaah with all of your requests. Especially when it comes to prophetic prayer and intercession to take time and slowly listen for what it is He wants you to pray for. So I'm like yeah ok, I do that quite often, but I dunno things have been weird and I haven't been spending a lot of time in prayer so I'm like ok God I'm listening tell me who, what, where, when, why and I'll start going. So God dropped two people on my heart with specific things to pray for both. One was my dad, one was a person from my church in Mesa. I was kind of surprised about the second one because, I dont know, it just seemed random especially since this is the second time this week I've felt like I needed to pray for them. I haven't heard from them once since I've been here. Not a hi, hello, I'm alive, glad you're alive... all year and though we weren't like super friends I did work pretty closly with them on church stuff. Anyway so I'm like ok I have no idea what's going on in this persons life...well not no idea I have good informants that keep me up to date....so you are definitely going to have to lead me how to pray God. And he did. Then I went back to sleep for about another hour. ha. That has nothing to do with it just thought you'd like to know. SO I get up and turn on my computer, checkmy email as per usual and sitting in my inbox is an email from this person I was just praying for. Does that seem weird to anyone else? It seems kind of weird to me, at least a confirmation that I was on the right track. And the email was surprisingly vulnerable considering our lack of communication. I dont know. I'm glad that God knows cause I'm just like, what the heck do I do with this. Keep watching and praying I guess.

hmm i do have something else to say, but I just skimmed the previous entry and wanted to clarify that yes, I DO have math skills and realize that 20 is not one quarter of 100. And I do want to see 100 so let's change that to a "one-fifth life crisis". Doesn't exactly roll off the tounge. ah well.

Tuesday, January 13, 2004

I have a wrinkle. I'm 20. I have a wrinkle, grey hair (yes, that's plural), am desperately single with not a prospect in sight, I'm overweight though trying to fix that (props to the South Beach Diet for actually working), I'm leaving my country of preference for my country of citizenship in 16 days. Could this be a quarter life crisis? (Hell yeah I'm going to live to see 100...unless Jesus takes me home first.)

It's not that I feel insecure about myself. I honestly don't...unless my grandma's in the room, which she's not, so I don't. I think I've just realized that I'm getting older. I'm not old, but I'm aging, and that's weird. It kind of caught me off guard. Besides the fact that I've been living on my own for the past year, sometimes I still feel like I'm in high school.

I first saw the wrinkle a couple days ago. It's on my forehead, and is one of those lines that's always been there when I raise my eyebrows or make a funny face, but now it's there all the time. No matter what my face is doing. I thought about anti-wrinkle cream, then I remembered how fruitless it is to fight the aging process. You can always tell which women have, and it's not usually flattering. (Example: Cher) So let nature take it's course. I'm still going to continue to revamp my lifestyle (eatting and exercise habits) to maximise the mileage I'll get out of this temporary tent. I'll start praying that God will allow me to age gracefully. I might even start investing in colouring my hair again, but apart from that I hope people will assume wisdom not age.

Monday, January 12, 2004

Well it's official. I mean it was already, but now everyone knows I'm coming back. Tickets bought, junk is being sorted...I may even have someone that's willing to bring my electric back to America with them so I don't have to sell it.

In other news a friends parents have hired me for the week to clean all of their mini-blinds and inside windows. Sounds easy? Their house is HUGE over 20 windows with blinds that haven't been cleaned in over 4 years. I think I'll probably end up making about $500 for the week. Not bad. Half the plane ticket.

I surprisingly don't have anything else to say. That's gotta be a first.

Friday, January 09, 2004

yep and it's now 5:35. Hello Mr. Sunshine.

so I lost one post, but here's another.
It's currently 4:15 AM. I've been up since 7AM. For some reason, only God knows, I'm not tired and I can't sleep. I take that back, I am tired, not heaps...but I can't sleep. I'm watching the Today show. They show it here at 4am. I don't usually get to watch it...probably because 4am is an hour for sleeping, not for watching American morning shows. Though I must say, Perky Katie Couric is looking quite casual today. What's with that. Ok seriously, why are we spending Billions of dollars on Mars and space travel when there are thousands of people dying everyday in Africa due to AIDS and famine. Does America ever see beyond it's borders? What's that word I learned in AP Gov't. Ethnocentrism? I dunno. All I remember is some political cartoon from the Roosevelt days of an Ostrich with it's head in the sand. I think right now our heads might be somewhere else, but this is a family blog. (I"m not sure since when it's a family blog, but right now it is for some reason.) Oh wait, just got a full body shot of Katie...not so casual, just the head shots with the little hooded cardigan. I'm actually starting to wonder who dressed her cause she's got like two different things happening. Paten leather pointy toe boots, greyish chic business like pants, and then this salmon coloured knit cardigan with a white tee underneath. Maybe she didn't have time to finish getting dressed. New theory: Have you ever seen 'The Truman Show' about the guy who grows up on tv? Well I reckon America is like that, but a soap opera, not reality tv. You know how you can not watch a soapie for 4 years and then randomly watch it and know exactly what's going on cause nothings changed? 4 years down the road in America, we're still talking Sadaam (did you not get the memo over there? "We got him") and weapons of mass destruction. I swear this interview that's happening right now is nothing new. What the hell (not a family blog) get a life, report something new. If there's nothing new to report, find something that's positive to talk about. Stop rehashing the same stuff.

Gosh this is so annoying. I just want to sleep. I love sleep. I never have trouble sleeping. But what happens right now when I go lay in bed and turn off the lights? My mind goes nuts, "How are you gonna get all this stuff home?" "Three weeks, three weeks, three weeks." "19 days, 19 days, 19 days." (yes I know three weeks does not equal 19 days) "Are you going to try to sell your electric or pawn it?" "What's going to happen to all the girls you were meant to find a house for a live with?" I tried praying...and that was actually good...it worked.
(wow, that was a really awkward katie/matt interaction...i actually cringed)

This afternoon I had some time by myself in the house. I needed time just to sit at the feet of Jesus and that's what I did. I just allow my spirit to relax and pour out everything that's been on my heart the past few days. I bought a ticket today, for a week earlier than originally planned. I confessed all of my thoughts, fears, hopes, doubts, dreams, insufficiencies, and excitements. The problem with seasons like this is that I get so increadibly excited about the future. It's a blank slate with so much potential, so much opportunity. I get excited about the challenge of figuring out how to fit all my stuff in one suitecase. I get excited about the flight and six hours in Fiji. I'm super excited to spend a few days with krys in LA. On the other hand I'm heart broken. Sad to leave such an amazing city...I still get excited everytime I see the Bridge or the Opera House. I'm sad to leave these amazing people; friends I've only known for a year, but have lived through a lot of changes with. I'm sad to leave the best church in the world.

I can't think...and I feel like crap...maybe I'll head back to my bed. To lie there. In darkness, actually it won't be darkness much longer. If I had a car I coud go watch the sunrise.
Good night...morning...whatever

Thursday, January 08, 2004

I hate you blogger...give me my long post back

Wednesday, January 07, 2004

EVERY LITTLE THING

Everything must change
There’s a mirror showing me the ugly truth
These bones they ache with holy fire
But I’ve got nothing to give, just a life to live
If your world is without colour
I will carry you, if you carry me

Every little thing’s gonna be alright
Every little thing’s gonna be alright [x2]

There’s no-one else to blame
I live my life between the fire and the flame
I’ve built my house where the ocean meets the land
It’s time to live again, pull my dreams out of the sand
Let your world be full of colour
I will carry you, if you carry me

When it’s all falling down on you
You’re crying out but you’re breaking in two
When it’s all crashing down on you
When there’s nothing you can do
There is someone who can carry you

©2003 Smith/Garrard // Curious? Music UK

Definitely my favorite song of the moment. Possibly my favorite song on the new Delirious album that my good friend krys doesn't have, but I do. But if she lets me stay at her place in Feb she could listen to it 5 days before it's released in America.
=)

Tuesday, January 06, 2004

A quote from my father. I seriously love my family so much. They are quirky as anyone else, but truely have great hearts.

"I was previewing some music on Song select this morning. It had the Song "Still" on it - it made me cry to know you were singing there and how much it ment to you"

I can't remember ever seeing my dad cry.

Monday, January 05, 2004

I saw "Love Actually" yesterday. I'd like to suggest a few alternate titles for that movie:

"Love UNactually"
"Lust Actually"
"Soft Porn Actually"
"The Deterioration of the word 'Love' Actually"
"Hugh Grant plays the same character in every movie Actually"
"More boobs than a National Geographic special Actually"

Yeah I could keep going, but they'd only get worse. The unfortunate thing is that it was a really good concept that just went really wrong because it had a sex addict for a director or something. And seriously what's wrong with the world when we've started to glorify and romantisize adultry. The cutest plots were an 11 year old boy chasing the "love of his life" and a writer who's Portugese house maid didn't speak a word of english but they managed a connection anyway. So if you were contemplating seeing "Love Actually" I would say DON'T! Choose any other British Romantic comedy with Hugh I-can't-act and you'll be much better off.

Why did I see the movie? I met Kate at Hornsby for Starbucks and she had some free vouchers. (quick tangent: can I just say she is one of the most generous people I know. She gave me her watch yesterday. Well she has two, but she said for some reason she felt to put it in her purse yesterday, then we ended up in this conversation about how i lost my phone, my watch broke, and I have no way to tell the time. So she pulled out her extra watch and gave it to me! Some day I will have that financial capacity.) We had a really good chat before the movie though. Kate's grown up in a family that shows less emotion than mine so when I told her the "news" she kind of just stared at me and said "This is me, absolutely devistated." AAAAAAAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!
I forgot how much it SUCKS leaving people. How could I forget? I've done it enough in my short life time. But this really sucks cause it's totally unexpected and I've never left these people before. "Left" as in permanently. I've left the fam, left church, left friends from school...they're all probably more used to me not being around than being around by now. But I've never had to say good bye to these people, and if it happens, let me tell you I'll be singing "I left my heart in Sydney" the whole way home. I mean to texas.
Actually I think that was part of the reason for the movie...Kate needed a distraction maybe? I needed a distraction come to think of it. Despite the fact that a monkey could have written a better movie, it did take my mind off things for a couple hours. And praise the Lord, it doesn't seem to have had any negative effects on my thinking process. Which truely is amazing cause I'm sure the devil would like to get a bit of lust happening in there at the moment.
I told krysty yesterday...she burst into tears...heathers in denial...amy said "It's not God's will for you to leave." I think "God" and "Amy" in that statement are interchangeable.

I quit Macca's yesterday. I wanted to tell them they could take their fries and shove them up their areses. But I refrained and just said, "I'm leaving the country". I seriously felt like a weight lift off of me.

I have to give Ali's car back tomorrow. And I also have to tell her about all this stuff that's come up since she's been gone. That will suck. Telling her, and giving back the car. ha. We've had some good times me and the Hyundai. I'm going to the beach today, and possibly tomorrow...gotta get all of the good times out of that baby that I can. So I guess that means I'm outta here.
Don't worry, there will be more later.

Saturday, January 03, 2004

You'd think after that last post i wouldn't have anything left to say. ha.
Church was good last night. God's speaking, but He seems to be dancing around the issue at hand. He keeps telling me, "Don't let the enemy steal your peace". Let me tell you I slept like a baby last night...after I got to sleep...after God reminded me again.
We had this guest preacher last night, Danny Guglemucci, from Southside in Adelaide. He reminds a lot of Russ Petrini. In looks only. He's a very fired up, prophetic kinda preacher but not "airy fairy" charasmatic in any way. he's very knowledgeable of scripture and very Bible based, he just gets his sermon ideas from divine revelation rather than "1001 sermon topics". Amazing.
He spoke last night on spiritual warfare, and how 2004 is going to be a year of incredible warfare for the church in Australia. But then he brought it down to the individual level and talked about ways the devil attacks our lives. One of the points was on purpose and destiny. Everything he was saying seemed like it should have been meant for me right now. I should have been getting fired up to fight for my destiny in Sydney. I should have been sensing God saying, "Mel this is for you, buck up kiddo" I should have walked out of there with increased faith and confidence that I'd be here for another year.
But none of that happened. I just felt peace. Peace about what doors is seems God is opening and which ones it seems He's closing, and peace about the fact that if $5000 came from somewhere I would be able to stay. I didn't feel like my destiny is being attacked, it just seems like I've come up to an unexpected fork in the road that God saw coming the whole time.
Later on I started to question. I got a two year visa, I got two years of medical insurance is it God's perfect will for me to be here for two years? Do I need to fight? Just because it seems like every oppotunity I had has been closed, does that mean I just shrivel up and accept it? Was it God's will for me to be here for two years, but because we live in a world at war and us human still have free will has the plan had to change? "Have peace Mel. You're doing the right thing, keep living in faith and keep moving and I'll direct you."

I need to get to church...aren't you lucky. =)

Thursday, January 01, 2004

ah yes. The new year. 2004, and I'm still not flying around in my personal space ship...man the 80's were sure wrong about the 00's. (you can figure out how to pronounce that) Time for reflections and resolutions. I've been doing much more of the latter than the former; a habit which I may actually need to stop and start making some goals and dreams for the year that is yet to unfold. I must say 2003 was freaking awesome. It was by far my hardest year ever (up until the very last day...a story yet to come) but each hardship was so worth everything I have gained from this place. Living the dream baby. Come to think of it I don't think I had any real concrete goals for 2003 other than to make it to the end of the year and develop some friendships with "pre-christians". Both of which have been successfully accomplished. Speaking of friendships that has definitely been the greatest blessing of this year. I recall a song we used to sing in Brownies (one of those incredibly RANDOM childhood memories) "Make new friends but keep the old, some are silver and the others gold". I think I have more "gold" friends than I could have ever asked for. Not just friendships, but life long, intimate, "Kindred spirits" (there's Anne again). Relationships I left in America have not just been maintained, but they have blossomed and become a source of unspeakable joy and encouragement. Some have temporarily died, but MWS said it best when he sang "And friends are friends forever, if the Lords the Lord of them". (what's with all the cheesy quotes??) My relationship with my immediate family has grown and become closer as well. How does all of this happen despite the distance? Absence makes the heart grow fonder? (that's cheesy quote number 4 if you're counting). I've allowed, and sometimes made myself become more open and vulnerable with them to the point of calling home today not just crying but bawling because of my current circumstances. And bless my mom's heart she made it very clear that when she asked, "So what are your plans?" it was not, "So when are you coming home?" in disguise. They trust me, and trust my desicions and trust my wisdom (they said that!) and don't want to pressure me either way. (though I was really wanting them to tell me what to do today. I want anyone to tell me what to do, I can't make this desicion it's too hard. I don't want to be a grown up anymore. Why did I take off and leave home so soon?) I told her I'd give it to the end of the month, and if nothing changed significantly I'd charge a ticket home. I can't believe I said it myself. But even now reflecting back on that statement, which was kind of said in the middle of emotional upheaval, I still have peace about it and I think it's the right plan to have for the moment. And let me tell you my plans have been changing by the moment. Which I hate. Absolutely hate. I'm so not myself right now. (Um, this blog just took a turn to the left, in case you didn't notice). Or maybe the problem is that right now I am completely my true self. How many times have I heard this year that when pressure and hard times and attacks come and squeeze you, the truth about who you are on the inside comes out. Well let me tell you friends my insides are made up of a lot of saline. I haven't stoped crying for two days...I'm crying now as a matter of fact, and honestly, it feels good...except for the headache...but it's definitely cathartic and helpful in some way. Back to the previous statement regarding wanting someone to tell me what to do...I want God to tell me what to do, but He won't, and He said that. He's told me time after time, after I've "demanded" He give me specific guidance, that he's given me a head, a heart, a spirit and that He'll bless whatever descion I make. Well that doesn't help. And you know what He threw in my face to illustrate that point? Last night. Last night was New Year's Eve here in Sydney and a few friends and I went into the city. It was amazing (details in a bit). But I didn't ask God, "Ok now You have to tell me where to go and what to do tonight God, because I don't want to move without your guidance." No, I used my head...I didn't want to be around the psycho partiers so we stayed on the north side of the city and went to a reserve that I'd heard was a bit more "family friendly". So that's where we headed to, and I know it sounds "super spiritual" but God really did completely bless the night. We miraculously found free parking in the city (I KNOW, I almost didn't want to move my car when we left, ha) within walking distance of our final destination. We found the greatest little patch, on the ferry dock of all places, that had ample space, nothing in front of us but water, boats and the beautiful Bridge and Opera House, and the hopelessly drunk crowd very far away. Honestly, it was a dream come true. I've always wanted to have a NYE in sydney like that. I wouldn't trade it in for anything (including my cell phone that is currently sitting at the bottom of the Sydney Harbour, though that was a very sad loss). Point it, the night was amazing. I couldn't have dreamed that it would be better, or cheaper! We honestly paid like $5 for gas and $5 for food. All of that and not once did I really "consult" God, persay. I was just using the gifts He's given me. And now that's what He's telling me to do about this whole staying or going thing. Though to me it seems a little bit of a more serious descision.
And I know what you're thinking cause I'm thinking the same thing. "Ok, Mel so a month ago you were pumped on the whole cafe living in Sydney forever thing, two weeks ago you started thinking about going back to Mesa, last week you said you were going to stick it out until the end of this year come hell or high water, and now you're giving it until the end of the month???"
Yeah I know. Well hell has definitely come, and it's name is McDonalds. I will never look at that place the same again. I hate it. And I think I truely mean that. I hate everything about it, I hate who it turns me into, and I hate myself when I'm there. It has nothing to do with "McDonalds", I hope I'm not that proud after this year, but none of the managers or staff there like me (except for the rest of the people that came over from Bo-Ma and surprisingly they aren't liked as well) and they make us do all the shit jobs. It's seriously so crap. Even thinking about going back there makes me cry. I don't want to do it. And if you know me, you know that I'm a pretty tough person. I've done a lot of jobs in my short life that some people wouldn't go near. I cleaned the nasty as Superdome for goodness sake...there's not a lot I won't do (though my friend said the retirement home she's working at might be hiring, but you have to bathe old people...I won't do that. Only if they're related to me and were a part of bringing me into this world would I do that.) So it's not like I'm a whip and just whinging about having to lie through my teeth when I say "Enjoy your meal", cause hell it's McDonalds! On top of all that one of the managers (the especially bitchy one) checked my uniform yesterday and told me my shoes weren't "regulation" though they have been all year at Bo-Ma which has the same regulations. Right. So she said I have to buy new shoes before my next shift, I tried to politely fight her in saying that I have no money and would try. She bitched back with, and I quote, "It's not a matter of trying. There's a shopping centre across the street that has shoes at a variety of prices, and if you don't get shoes that are acceptable don't come back". She was SO gracious though and let me work the rest of the day in my "unregulation" shoes. If she was REALLY that concerned, shouldn't she have sent me home? And the ironic thing is that the whole time she was telling me this I was looking at her shoes, which were definitely not "regulation" compared to what she was telling me. Ugh. Did I mention that I hate it. And I definitely don't want to invest money into shoes for a job that I hate and intend to leave as soon as humanly possible. I don't HAVE money to buy shoes with! Needless to say I am now frantically trying to find a job, any job, before my next shift.
Did I mention that New Year's Eve was freaking amazing? Sydney definitely knows how to throw a party I tell ya what. 1 million people in the city, and all of them except us three were drunk off their faces ha. Because of the length of the habour and how spread out people were they actually had 4 separate, identical firework displays that were all syncronized and centered around the Bridge. It was AMAZING. I seriously can't get over it. And because of all the bays, and inlets, and city buildings, the sound just echoed everywhere. I felt like a kid again. I also felt patriotic because fireworks on a hot summer's day must obviously be the 4th of July. Or the 1st of January. Whatever.

New subject.

So you know the stereo type of the stay at home wife who, when her husband comes home from a long day's work promptly starts to talk his ear off because she hasn't had any verbal communication all day? That's how I feel with my housemate. Except all the time. It's hard cause I mean I am actually interested in what she has to say most of the time, but I just don't have the patience or desire after 6 hours in hell for her to tell me how great her new car is. Lets rub a little more salt in the wound thanks.

So back to the whole crying on the phone to my parents thing. I was seriously debating whether or not to call because I didn't know if I wanted to appear that "weak" (though I tell you what...He truely does become our strength in weakness). But I'm so glad that I did call, because though they didn't tell me what to do, they talked with me through some things, and were just so calm and understanding about it. They went through their fare share of rough times and trailer parks when they were young, so I definitely respect them for speaking from experience. My dad actually answered the phone and didn't seem to be freaked out at all. He said he was sorry (obviously) and wished they had money to help out, but they he would support whatever I decided to do. (there it goes again. What's it with Dad's and them wanting you to think for yourself these days) And my mom was amazing. I was sure that when she heard me crying she'd lose it herself, which was totally what I did NOT need, but she maintained composure the whole time, and eventually distracted me with stories of christmas, painting, and the search for certain household items which have still not turned up after the move. Though I wouldn't be surprised if she lost it after we hung up. I'm so thankful for them. And thankful for what God is doing in their lives. Today..or yesterday I guess... was dad's last day at therapy. He won't see anyone until March. Lord willing. And He is.

I would like to say that i hate this stupid South Beach diet, but it does seem to be working. Though I'm not sure it will be after my New Year's Eve mini-splurge.

ok and you know what I love, I love the joy, peace, patience, confidence, security, faith, and grace that I'm experiencing through all of this crap right now. I love that though life kicks your ass sometimes, Jesus and that relationship is immovable and is absolutely an anchor that holds you steady.

I think I need to stop thinking about myself now, and start thinking about others that are going through crap right now as well. i.e. PRAY!

Umm, if you've read this far, you get a gold star or you're just really bored and in that case get nothing. Except probably knowing way too much about my life.
Peace out.