Friday, July 21, 2006

Superman and Good Enough

(post has been edited to protect personal information - Tams)

... While in Blairmore, Jillian and I also went to see Superman Returns! Overall, I guess it was a good movie. Some parts made me laugh, some made me hold my breath, and some made me groan. I can't say I cried though. I think my favourite line would have to be when Lex said, "This ordinary crystal is a seed, and all it needs is water." and Kitty asks, "like sea monkeys." to which Lex sighs and replies, "Exactly, Kitty. Like seamonkeys." ...
I think the thing that struck me the most about the movie though, had to be when Lois says to Superman, "the world doesn't need a savior." My very first thought was: you are wrong!
But then Superman takes her above the city and asks her what she hears.

"I hear everything," he says, "You wrote that the world doesn't need a savior, but I hear them crying for one everyday."

Now that, my friends, really got me thinking. Isn't it amazing how God can speak to us through secular things. I don't know if it was intentional for there to be a parallel between Jesus and Superman, but after that, I couldn't help but think of it. Superman fights for truth and justice, while our Lord celebrates in the truth. And he says that even though people believe that the world doesn't need a saviour, every day they still seek one. The same is true with Jesus. So many people believe that the world doesn't need Jesus, but so many people rely on Him and His strength every day. So, there you have it; a little undeveloped thought about how Superman can be Jesusified--or Jesus can be Supermanified. Jesus is my Superman.


... I'd like to share something with you. I got this lovely little excerpt from a book I'm reading called, "One Minute Bible For Starters" (page 70, for those of you that have it kicking around!) This book has really been challenging my views on things, and helping me better define me. It's based on the passage Galatians 3:2-5, 10-14 ...

Maybe your dad wasn't quick with an "I love you." Maybe he said the lawn looked pretty good, but that you could have been a lot more careful around the flower bed. Maybe he was fairly pleased with your musical performance, but scolded you being flat in a few places. He may have thought four A's and two B's wasn't too bad. But it could have been better. You could have tried harder. You could have done more. But what you did was never enough.

So getting up ten minutes early three days this week to pray and read your Bible was good. Wasn't it, Father? Oh course, it could have been more like twenty. And every day.

Giving an extra five dollars in your tithe check this week was pertty generous. Right, Father? Or would ten dollars have earned more of a smile?

Listen, you can always do more to return the favor God's given. There's not a person alive who can't deepen his devotion. But child of God, He loves you and accepts you right where you are. And you can't work hard enough to get more. The proof is in His palm.

That's pretty much it for me. Gosh, it's late, and I don't know what else to say. So, goodnight!

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Doublemint Twins Are Different!!

They're Mints!!

Ha ha, see Laurel? I told you this was great!

Sorry to the rest of you--I mean, you can enjoy this!--but I am currently out of profound-ness. I may take rain checks ...

Friday, May 19, 2006

Pay Day

So, today's pay day, and all it did was make me think about money, and how I don't have enough. Guhh ... its evil, and stressing me out. Money is evil; yet, to get by in life, we need it.

I hate oweing people money too.
I hate spending it.
I hate not having enough.

It's funny, cuz I was thinking about when things are all gonna be on the plus side for me; when I'll have student loans out of the way, and I won't have to call mom to transfer me money for rent -- when I'm making mortgage payments and not paying rent! -- and I thought, "yeah, like that day'll happen."
I feel like I'll never get ahead.
Money is such a waste.

I hate money.

Friday, April 21, 2006

He's Blunt

More and more lately I've been feeling the challenge of just trusting God more--wholeheartedly--and hearing what he is saying to me. So, in lieu of that, I have a story!

In the summer of grade 10 I was faced with a difficult decision; where I wanted to go for grade 11. I was in such a position that I could wake up for the first day of class, and catch the bus to the school to the north, or the one to the school to the south. Having been going to the school in the north for a year already, I wasn't sure if I really liked it, and was not happy to hear that they were cutting their art program. I had a few friends that went to the south school, and knew the principal quite well, as he was my elementary and junior high principal.
It was the last day of summer vacation, and my father confronted me and said, "I really wish you'd go back to said school, I think you're making a wrong choice to be switching schools ..." and I was very shocked. I thought about it all day, and that night I asked my mom, "what do I do?"
"Well," she replied, "I don't know; that is your choice." It had been a long day, and I was tired, and confused, so I just prayed to God, and said.
"God, you know what is best for me; let me know what I am to do in the morning--and make it clear, because sometimes it's hard for me to tell when you are speaking to me."
And then I went to sleep ...
"Tammy?" my mom woke me in the morning, "Are you okay with catching a ride to school with Brette and her mom this morning? I can't get you [south] to the bus stop."
"Yeah, okay mom." I replied; God had answered my prayer--bluntly at that--and it was as good of an answer as ever for me. I went to that south school--to the disapproval of my father; ended up taking art all through high school, and got encouragement from my peers to pursue it along the way--took it as God's call and decided to follow it. I heard about ACAD from my guidance counsellor, and went to the portfolio review day with my portfolio--that was really just a throw-together--and got it approved that day! Looking back, one could say that my mom just assumed or decided for me. But look at the results! There was definitely--without a doubt--a higher power working there! Often I am just so amazed at how God works in my life. Because of this, I do know that God wants me to pursue my art--even if I don't know in what way yet! He'll tell me in time. It's weird how things that seem so small at first add up in God's scheme of things.

The moral of the story is: God talked to me, as he talks to us all. And He will talk to us in whatever way works, because it is His desire to be able to talk to us. He loves us with this ... amazing, never ending love--If you loved someone in the way that God loves us, wouldn't you do anything in your power to break that communication barrier with them, so you could talk to them and be with them? I know I would, and my love is nothing compared to God's love.

Part of this, though, is just trusting when God is talking to you, and where he is leading you in life. I thought about this a lot today--as I have been thinking about this a lot lately--and was able to openly admit that I need to work on this. I said I was ready to step up to the challenge, and God heard me ...
Half an hour later I got an email about a house that will be available to rent right around the time that the lease where I am currently renting is expiring. The rate was very favourable, so I called the girl that sent me the email, and I got in touch with the landlord--what a blessing, I thought, it will be available right when I need it, and it will be more affordable! But, it turns out it wasn't the blessing I had hoped. She didn't want to rent to me because of my age, and advised me that she was planning to raise the rent as soon as the current tenants are gone.

As discouraging as that was, I was okay with it, because I knew that God was still talking to me. He told me flat-out no. Am I okay with that? Of course I am, He knows what is best. I will just keep trusting him, and looking towards His guidance. Sometimes, yes, He opens doors wide open for us--like God did for me by sending me to ACAD--but sometimes He slams them right shut. God will be blunt if he has to be. It's seemed to work for me so far!

Lord, I am listening, help me learn to hear you more; it's okay if you have to be blunt.

Thursday, March 23, 2006

If Walls Could Talk

Well, I can't believe that I've put off talking about this for this long already, as it's been five days since I've found out ...

My mom sold her restaurant. I don't know why this came as so much of a shock when I first heard it, because she'd been trying to sell it for a year, and had had three other people interested in it before this person that has bought it. Maybe it's because she's owned it for five years--and worked in it for three years unde the previous owner before that.
So my first reaction was "Wow!", as I am a woman of a lot of words. Heh, I didn't have a lot to say. So I asked my mom, "what are you gonna do now?" (clean her house she told me!) She's dedicated so much of the past five years to that place--running a facility like that is no easy thing, and the only "hired" people she had were my sisters and myself ... and my dad, of course--it was a family effort.

So she hands over the keys tomorrow; I am so totally bummed. I mean, I know that my mom needs a break, but just the fact that next time I go home, it won't be mine anymore.

I tried to think of the last time I was in there earlier this week, and it took me a few days to remember: my dad's birthay. I went back--unbeknownst to him--and we had a little birthday party for him. He was so suprised to see John and me. Ha ha, and then that cake that Vanessa and Andrew decorated!! And the welding rod that we thought was a sparkler.

I've really had some good times in that place. We used to sit in there and play cards after closing, and Lysa and I would get laughing so hard, I'd have to walk out just to get some fresh air and calm down. And then I'd walk back in and just start laughing all over again. And then there's the "I'm sucha good kid ... pet me!" incident. Ha ha.
And then there's my dad and I eating fries, and he's point away and go, "what's that over there?!" And I'd look and go "what?" and he'd steal a fry, and I'd laugh. I fell for that over and over. I'm pretty sure it was intentional.
Mom used to let us have our youth group meetings in there too. We'd all sit at the coffee table and drink coffee and play cards. One time, we loaded John Tilson's coffee with sugar when he was in the washroom, and he came back and put more in; ohh man! And Robert making a milkshake, and not taking it off the blender properly; he spilled it all over the kitchen floor!
We used to come in with our rollerblades too, and mom would yell at us: "Get out of here with your blades on!!" So then we'd have to truck home and put our shoes on. Sometimes we could sneak in and just sit down while she was in the kitchen though. Then we'd get up to leave and we'd get that glare!
I used to sit in there and do homework, do a puzzle, do some dishes (yuck!) Always jumping up and getting people menus and coffee. Coffee times were the best ...
Ladies coffee was at 8:00 AM, then coffee again at 10:00 AM, and at 3:00 PM. They always came at the same time and would talk about who is getting married, who's sick, who's passed away--general small town gossip. Often I'd just sit and listen, and one of them would tease me a little, or ask me a question once in a while. Doug Henry would sit in his usual corner, smoking his cigarette, asking "what day is it?" many, many times. Sam Kidd would tell his jokes, but never really care to hear anyone else's. Larry Cheshire would usually just sit quietly. They used to flip their loonies and toonies to see who would take all the money up to the till, and get to keep the change--which was 99% of the time left as a tip anyway; but eventually that ceased, and they would just leave their loonies on the table and leave. Such a laid back atmosphere; sometimes one of the guys would stand up from the table and get the coffee pot himself! They all knew they were welcome to help themselves, but if they didn't feel comfortable doing so for whatever reason, they would ask and we would be happy to get them a refill. Only in a small town ...
In more recent years--particularly when Vanessa was a baby, and just learning to crawl--we (Lysa and I that is) used to have baby races. We would put Vanessa on one side of the restaurant, and run to the other with a timer, and time how long it took her to get to us. She'd always arrive with this huge smile on her face. When Andrew arrived, and they both grew a little more, we used to play "hide and seek" Usually this entailed hiding behind a chair, under a table, behind the counter, or behind the curtains by the patio window. Auntie Tammy often played along too. Later it was Vanessa running around yelling, "Zazu!! Where are you?!" and he would giggle and run away--she could very clearly see him, but would pretend she couldn't.
And then there was that Valentine's Day that John asked my mom if he could use the restaurant for a date for us. He decorated it up just for me, and cooked me supper, and we just enjoyed the time to ourselves; dancing and just ... celebrating. Of course, when I arrived, I knew none of this was going on, so I was really suprised and touched. It was the best.
Most recently was the Settlers tradition: Marianne and G would come over with the Hellman's, and I'd make some fries, and we would sit and drink coffee and eat fries and Hellman's mayo, and play a game or two of Settlers, and often make plans to do it again the next night.

So, really it's not hard to see why I am going to miss the place so much. It's going to be hard to go back and walk in to that place and not have it as mine anymore. I wonder if I'll have the guts to walk in there at all, actually. I actually used to wish that my mom would sell that place just so she could be home more, but now I realize how much I will miss it. I may not have free coffee anymore, but I have memories that will last forever.

If walls could talk, five years worth of that little cafe's story would be about us.