Thursday, August 27, 2009
Thursday, July 16, 2009
July 18th-25th: X-Camp
July 28th - 31st: Soccer Camp
August 1st - 8th: English Camp & Moving into my Apartment (1st) & My Birthday (7th)
August 9th -15th: Oldrichovice Youth Camp
August 15th-16th: Saying Goodbye 'possibly' to Terri
August 17th-20th: Possibly going to visit another missionary
August 23rd: Saying Goodbye at Church
August 26th-27th: Summer Missionary School
August 28th: Leaving the Czech Republic
August 29th: Flying Home
Friday, July 10, 2009
Well, this week had kinda been a down week for me. I spend a lot of time alone working on my computer doing research. Sadly, our English camp for this coming week was canceled. Hopeful my spirits will put up the week after as I go into full camp mode. I have X-camp, which is a huge youth gathering here. I will be leading an english group and sleeping in a tent all we! Pray for cooler weather!! Then I have soccer camp! Then I have a English camp with 7 Americans from VA!! I'll be sleeping in the basement with all the Czech Youth from my church. It should be hilarious! Then I have our church youth group retreat! Then I start packing to come home!
More exciting news I finally have an apartment that I can move into as of Aug. 1st!! :)
Saturday, June 20, 2009
Friday, June 12, 2009
Friday, May 15, 2009
Then bicycles were chainless
And carriages were horseless
And many laws, enforceless.
Next, cookery was fireless,
Telegraphy was wireless,
Cigars were nicotineless
And coffee, caffeineless.
Soon oranges were seedless,
The putting green was weedless,
The college boy hatless,
The proper diet, fatless,
Now motor roads are dustless,
The latest steel is rustless,
Our tennis courts are sodless,
Our new religions, godless. "
- Arthur Guiterman
Wednesday, May 13, 2009
Monday, May 11, 2009
The Hound of Heaven By Francis Thompson
I fled Him, down the nights and down the days;
I fled Him, down the arches of the years;
I fled Him, down the labyrinthine ways
Of my own mind; and in the mist of tears
I hid from Him, and under running laughter.
Up vistaed hopes I sped;
And shot, precipitated,
Adown Titanic glooms of chasmèd fears,
From those strong Feet that followed, followed after.
But with unhurrying chase,
And unperturbèd pace,
Deliberate speed, majestic instancy,
They beat -- and a voice beat
More instant than the Feet --
"All things betray thee, who betrayest Me."
I pleaded, outlaw-wise,
By many a hearted casement, curtained red,
Trellised with intertwining charities;
(For, though I knew His love Who followèd,
Yet was I sore adread
Lest, having Him, I must have naught beside.)
But, if one little casement parted wide,
The gust of his approach would clash it to :
Fear wist not to evade, as Love wist to pursue.
Across the margent of the world I fled,
And troubled the gold gateways of the stars,
Smiting for shelter on their clangèd bars ;
Fretted to dulcet jars
And silvern chatter the pale ports o' the moon.
I said to Dawn : Be sudden -- to Eve : Be soon ;
With thy young skiey blossoms heap me over
From this tremendous Lover--
Float thy vague veil about me, lest He see !
I tempted all His servitors, but to find
My own betrayal in their constancy,
In faith to Him their fickleness to me,
Their traitorous trueness, and their loyal deceit.
To all swift things for swiftness did I sue ;
Clung to the whistling mane of every wind.
But whether they swept, smoothly fleet,
The long savannahs of the blue ;
Or whether, Thunder-driven,
They clanged his chariot 'thwart a heaven,
Plashy with flying lightnings round the spurn o' their feet :--
Fear wist not to evade as Love wist to pursue.
Still with unhurrying chase,
And unperturbèd pace,
Deliberate speed, majestic instancy,
Came on the following Feet,
And a Voice above their beat--
"Naught shelters thee, who wilt not shelter Me."
I sought no more that after which I strayed,
In face of man or maid ;
But still within the little children's eyes
Seems something, something that replies,
They at least are for me, surely for me !
I turned me to them very wistfully ;
But just as their young eyes grew sudden fair
With dawning answers there,
Their angel plucked them from me by the hair.
"Come then, ye other children, Nature's -- share
With me" (said I) "your delicate fellowship ;
Let me greet you lip to lip,
Let me twine with you caresses,
With our Lady-Mother's vagrant tresses,
With her in her wind-walled palace,
Underneath her azured daïs,
Quaffing, as your taintless way is,
From a chalice
Lucent-weeping out of the dayspring."
So it was done :
I in their delicate fellowship was one --
Drew the bolt of Nature's secrecies.
I knew all the swift importings
On the wilful face of skies ;
I knew how the clouds arise
Spumèd of the wild sea-snortings ;
All that's born or dies
Rose and drooped with ; made them shapers
Of mine own moods, or wailful or divine ;
With them joyed and was bereaven.
I was heavy with the even,
When she lit her glimmering tapers
Round the day's dead sanctities.
I laughed in the morning's eyes.
I triumphed and I saddened with all weather,
Heaven and I wept together,
And its sweet tears were salt with mortal mine ;
Against the red throb of its sunset-heart
I laid my own to beat,
And share commingling heat ;
But not by that, by that, was eased my human smart.
In vain my tears were wet on Heaven's grey cheek.
For ah ! we know not what each other says,
These things and I ; in sound I speak--
Their sound is but their stir, they speak by silences.
Nature, poor stepdame, cannot slake my drouth ;
Let her, if she would owe me,
Drop yon blue bosom-veil of sky, and show me
The breasts o' her tenderness ;
Never did any milk of hers once bless
My thirsting mouth.
Nigh and nigh draws the chase,
With unperturbèd pace,
Deliberate speed, majestic instancy ;
And past those noisèd Feet
A Voice comes yet more fleet --
"Lo ! naught contents thee, who content'st not Me."
Naked I wait thy Love's uplifted stroke !
My harness piece by piece Thou hast hewn from me,
And smitten me to my knee ;
I am defenceless utterly.
I slept, methinks, and woke,
And, slowly gazing, find me stripped in sleep.
In the rash lustihead of my young powers,
I shook the pillaring hours
And pulled my life upon me ; grimed with smears,
I stand amid the dust o' the mounded years --
My mangled youth lies dead beneath the heap.
My days have crackled and gone up in smoke,
Have puffed and burst as sun-starts on a stream.
Yea, faileth now even dream
The dreamer, and the lute the lutanist ;
Even the linked fantasies, in whose blossomy twist
I swung the earth a trinket at my wrist,
Are yielding ; cords of all too weak account
For earth with heavy griefs so overplussed.
Ah ! is Thy love indeed
A weed, albeit an amaranthine weed,
Suffering no flowers except its own to mount ?
Ah ! must --
Designer infinite !--
Ah ! must Thou char the wood ere Thou canst limn with it ?
My freshness spent its wavering shower i' the dust ;
And now my heart is as a broken fount,
Wherein tear-drippings stagnate, spilt down ever
From the dank thoughts that shiver
Upon the sighful branches of my mind.
Such is ; what is to be ?
The pulp so bitter, how shall taste the rind ?
I dimly guess what Time in mists confounds ;
Yet ever and anon a trumpet sounds
From the hid battlements of Eternity ;
Those shaken mists a space unsettle, then
Round the half-glimpsed turrets slowly wash again.
But not ere him who summoneth
I first have seen, enwound
With glooming robes purpureal, cypress-crowned ;
His name I know, and what his trumpet saith.
Whether man's heart or life it be which yields
Thee harvest, must Thy harvest-fields
Be dunged with rotten death ?
Now of that long pursuit
Comes on at hand the bruit ;
That Voice is round me like a bursting sea :
"And is thy earth so marred,
Shattered in shard on shard ?
Lo, all things fly thee, for thou fliest me !
"Strange, piteous, futile thing !
Wherefore should any set thee love apart ?
Seeing none but I makes much of naught" (He said),
"And human love needs human meriting :
How hast thou merited --
Of all man's clotted clay the dingiest clot ?
Alack, thou knowest not
How little worthy of any love thou art !
Whom wilt thou find to love ignoble thee,
Save Me, save only Me ?
All which I took from thee I did but take,
Not for thy harms,
But just that thou might'st seek it in My arms.
All which thy child's mistake
Fancies as lost, I have stored for thee at home :
Rise, clasp My hand, and come !"
Halts by me that footfall :
Is my gloom, after all,
Shade of His hand, outstretched caressingly ?
"Ah, fondest, blindest, weakest,
I am He Whom thou seekest !
Thou dravest love from thee, who dravest me."
Tuesday, May 5, 2009
Thursday, April 30, 2009
Thursday, April 23, 2009
Saturday, April 4, 2009
So in keeping with my April diet plan I go running everyday. Well I don't like running on hard surfaces, so go to Poland where there are great trails. Well, on this morning I ran a little later b/c it was Friday and I could sleep in. Well, I came running down this trail the same time a ranger/army "class" was coming down. All decked out in green uniforms and patches. Well, some of the guys in the class thought it was funny and decided to mock me running. I need to think of a good response for next time. Any ideas?
Mini Story #2: Ditch Lovin'
There is a American team here called "Watermark." Terri and I decide to visit them, which is a good 20 min walk. The roads here are really small, I mean really small. It was late at night and we brought a long a little flashlight. Well, this car was coming super fast with its brights on and it was hard to see. Being a good friend I got over so Terri could get over, well next thing I knew I was falling and my legs hit something hard. Terri was like what are you doing; she thought I was playing. I mean doesn't everyone like to play in water ditches at 9pm at night in Poland. The phrase "deer in the headlights" takes on a whole new meaning.
Mini Story #3: Walk to No Where
So, I thought it would be a wonderful idea to walk to Terri's house. They said if you take the bike trail its only 40mins. It was beautiful spring day so why not. Well, the map I had wasn't the best (ie really small and no street names), but I figured I could do it. So I packed all my things and headed out at 12:45ish. Well, I thought I was doing pretty good until I had to leave the road and take a trail. Well, the trail on the map was pink. The trails on the sign were Green and Red. I thought ok maybe this is it. So I asked two polish ppl and they said yep! (in polish though). Well I walked up this huge hill and asked 3 more ppl and all said, Yep or tak! So then I get to a fork in the road and was like oh no! So I asked this little old man and he said go left and a lot of other polish. Well, I didn't trust him and I asked this lady and she said the same thing. So I walk down looking for this big red light. Finally I came to it! Well, then I noticed a little pizza place on a street that look all to familiar, it was steph's house! I had walked in one big HUGE HOT circle. Czech Maps and I are NOT friends.
Mini Story #4: Name Change
In CZ are "wal-mart" is called Tesco. Well steph and I went to Tesco shopping. I go there every week almost for the past 5 months. Well, I was going to check out and handed the lady my CC. I signed the lil slip and thought all is good. Well, then she got all mad at me pointed to the card and the slip. So, I have problems with my card b/c it says "See Photo ID". Well, normally I just show my drivers licence and that is that. But this lady would not have it. So she printed another slip, I signed my name as "See Photo ID" b/c they have to match!! Goodness.
Friday, March 27, 2009
1. Kraslice- hand painted Easter eggs
2. Pomlázka- Willow branches branded together. The boys chase the girls and hit them on the back of the legs on Red Monday (the Monday after Easter). This is suppose to bring health and youth. In return, the girls give them sweets and painted eggs (sometimes shots of alcohol). Also, boys can throw cold water on girls or even throw them in the river. I am wearing pants this day!
3. Names of the days: Ugly Wednesday, Green Thursday: the long green robes worn in church and the spinach and cabbage traditionally eaten on the day; Great Friday: No church bells ring, which are said to have “flown away to Rome" (no music is played either); White Saturday: day when new members are baptized in the catholic church; and Red Monday.
Happy Easter! - Veselé Velikonoce!
Tuesday, March 24, 2009
"Why do we never read in the Scriptures Jesus laughed? We hear of Him weeping. We hear of Him upset. We hear of Him rebuking people. I wish somewhere it were written Jesus laughed. Certainly there must be some sense of joy and mirth in God Himself. [...]
Joy which was the small publicity of the pagan, is the gigantic secret of the Christian. As I close this chaotic volume, I open again the strange small book from which all Christianity came. And I am again haunted by a kind of confirmation, this tremendous figure which fills the Gospels, towers in this respect as in any other above all the thinkers who ever thought themselves tall. His pathos was natural, almost causal. The Stoics, ancient and modern, were proud of concealing their tears. He never concealed his tears; He showed them plainly on his open face at any daily sight, such as the far sight of His native city. Yet He concealed something. Solemn supermen and imperial diplomatists are proud of restraining their anger. He never restrained his anger. He flung furniture down the front steps of the Temple, and asked men how they expected to escape the damnation of Hell. Yet He restrained something. I say it with reverence; there was in that shattering personality a thread that must be called shyness. There was something that he hid from all men when he went up a mountain to pray. There was something that he covered constantly by abrupt silence or impetuous isolation. There was one thing that was to0 great for God to show us when He walked upon our earth; and I have sometimes faniced that is was God's mirth."
Wednesday, March 11, 2009
"Show your love for the former USSR during training time in this adidas Marx A-Flex Russia cap, featuring a six-panel low-crown fit, deep pre-curved brim, an Always Cool™ sweatband to wick away the moisture, and a hammer-and-sickle graphic."
(left is the cuba verison; right the China version) That's not all it wicks away. Show your love? Your love of what oppression? Since when have symbols of oppression and socialism been 'cool'? Maybe it's because I currently live in CZ, where stories are pasted over Sunday lunches about the fears and pain of the USSR. You can still see the look in there eyes about the flash backs they are having in there minds. About spies in church about language changes in schools, about being watched. Is this part of a desensitizing of our nation, in order to move forward with a hidden agenda?
Thursday, March 5, 2009
JIF Peanut Butter
Peanut Butter Flavor things: Nutterbutter Cookies, PB cookies mix, PB candy
Bag of Chocolate Chips
Real Liquid Vanilla
Jiffy Corn Bread Mix
American Cheese Flavor: Cheese-its, Chips, Crackers
Salsa (medium)Anything Spicy or Mexican Flavored
Big Red (the drink)
Rice Krispy Treats and/or just a bag of Rice Krispies
Hot Chocolate Mix
Muffin Mix: Blueberry, Lemon Poppyseed, Banana Nut, Mix Berry
Starbucks Coffee Or GIFT CARDS!
Prince of Wales Twinnings Tea
TAZO Awake Tea
Itunes Gift Cards (to rent english movies)
Harry & David Pineapple Salsa
Red Pepper Flakes- like on pizza
Tuesday, March 3, 2009
I guess I have been blessed in a rather unusual way. I have gone to the same church my whole life. And for a time, I spent more time there then at my actual house. I did take my shoes off at the door. In fact I still do, after service don't be surprised to see me running around in my bare feet. I had a place for my lunch box and a coloring book in the desk. I know that whole place like the back of my hand. I was babysat by the whole youth group for a while almost every Sunday night. I remember what color the walls or even doors used to be. I remember the "old" building. I was baptized there. I was confirmed there. I took my first communion there. My parents were married there. I became a DCE there. My sister funeral was there. I became a missionary there. My church is my home. I find myself missing those seafoam green pews I used as a jungle gym. I miss sharing the peace with Mrs. Bailey. I miss getting smacked in the leg for shaking the whole pew. I miss all the old ladies say "I remember when you were this big." I miss dad smiling at me as he walks out after service. I miss skipping Sunday school with Nicki and going to our spot in the woods. I miss all those folders full of notes we hung from the ceiling. I miss Sunday night youth group with '60s furniture. I miss funny ceiling tiles and hilarious volleyball. I miss lent and advent potlucks. I would walk through every part of my life within it's walls. But most of all I miss walking through those doors feeling like I am home. I made it through the week. Here, I can be real, I can be me. Here I am home.
Tuesday, February 24, 2009
As I sit here eating what is probably my eighth piece of chocolate today, in honor of fat Tuesday, with my feet tapping to the rhythm of Celtic violins, download inspired by my latest book, I can’t help but thank God for the delights of the day. There was nothing extraordinary about today’s happenings, no defining moment, not even a word to be remembered for years to come, or weeks for that matter. No it was simply, the ease and comfort to sit back and look at those things which where always there. Those things that most people, including me, just don’t have time to ponder or to enjoy. My day started out as it always does, with the disbelief that it was time to actually get out of bed. I did my morning workout, read the bible over a bowl of PB oatmeal, went through my prayer basket, and then decided it was time to exchange the sweatpants in for a jeans and a yellow polo. I don’t know if its b/c I love yellow or that my prayers were exceptionally good today, but I found with feelings complete satisfaction and delight as I found myself watching these little birds out my window. Opening my widow to these little birds, with bright yellow chests, and to a rush of cool air, one could not help but sense that spring was trying awaken. The bleakness of the gray sky was almost lost behind evergreens which dripped with melting snow and to church bells that rang in the afternoon. The annoyance of winter and spring battling over the day was soon lost in the wonder of the beautiful icicles it left behind. Its days like this I just wish I could curl up in a cabin somewhere far away from city streets and bustling people. With hot chocolate in hand and a blanket in reach, I would be delighted to be in the audience as God once again cues spring on to what Shakespeare referred to as ‘the stage’. The only thing would add to it would be a person to share the ‘awe’ with (cuz I like to snuggleJ).
Wednesday, February 18, 2009
Thursday, February 12, 2009
Friday, February 6, 2009
Thursday, February 5, 2009
- Hike Halicky Sneznik
- Canoe the Berounka River
- Go to Podyji National Park
- Go to Lednice Chateau
- Go to the Highlander's Festival - in Jablunkov, 7th - 9th Aug.
- See Pracvcicka Brana (Land Bridge)
- Go in a Cave!
- Learn to make Czech soup!
- Go to a futbol game!
- See the bears at Cesky Krumlov Castle
- Have a beer at the Plzen Brewery
- Go to Terezin Concentration Camp
- See the rocks at Cesky Raj
- Go to Triple-boundary
Tuesday, February 3, 2009
Thursday, January 15, 2009
ONCE there were two brothers. They were lazy fellows, and thieves into the bargain. They were expected to give a feast. They said to one another: "We haven't got anything. Wherever shall we find food for the feast?"
So the first said: "I'll go to our neighbour's. He has some fine apples, and I'll pluck some of them." The second said: "I'll go to the shepherd's. He has some fine rams. I'll steal a ram from him."
These two brothers hated the third, and so they abused him: "Silly Jura! You won't get anything yourself, but you'll be ready enough to eat what we get."
So Jura said: "I'll go to the burgomaster's and get some nuts."
In the evening they went their ways. When he had finished plucking the nuts, Jura went into the charnel-house at the back of the church and began to crack the nuts there. The watchmen heard the cracking in the charnel-house, and they thought the place was haunted. As there was no priest in the village (he lived in the next village), they went to the burgomaster and asked him to go with them to the charnel-house, saying that the place was haunted.
The burgomaster said: "I am so ill that I can't stand on my feet; no doctor can help me."
But the watchmen insisted, and so the burgomaster told his servant to take him on his back and carry him to the place. The servant carried him along, and the watchmen called at the churchwarden's to ask for some holy water.
When they came near to the charnel-house, Jura thought it was his brother bringing the ram, so he called out: "Are you bringing him?"
The servant was frightened, and let the burgomaster fall and ran away. The burgomaster was terrified too. He jumped up and ran after the servant. He cleared a wooden fence with one leap in his flight, and it wasn't long till he reached home. His family wondered to see him cured so quickly without the help of a doctor.
Next day the burgomaster proclaimed that he would give a pound to the man who had stolen his nuts the day before, if he would only come to see him. So Jura went to him, and the burgomaster said: "I ought to punish you for stealing, but since you have cured my illness which nobody was able to cure, I'll give you the pound I promised, but you mustn't steal any more." So Jura promised not to steal any more, and went home.
The brothers grew very fond of him now that he had money. They borrowed the money from him and bought themselves new clothes, and said: "We'll go to see the world and to get wives for ourselves. As for you, Silly Jura, you must stay at home; you'd never get a good wife for yourself."
So off they went. But Jura went too. He went to the forest and he was utterly dazzled. He had often heard that there was an enchanted castle in that forest. When he came to the place where the ruins of the castle were, night overtook him, and so he could see nothing except what looked like a light in a cellar. So he went into the cellar to make his night's lodging there. There was nobody in the cellar but a cat. The cat greeted him: "Welcome, dear Jura! How did you come here?"
Jura was frightened when he heard the cat speak, and was going to run away. But the cat told him not to go; there was no need to be frightened. He must come back, and no harm would be done to him. If he wanted to eat, he could go into the storeroom and take what he wanted. She would take him for her servant.
So he stayed there a year and had a good time. He never saw a cook, but he always found meals ready prepared in the storeroom. He had nothing to do but get firewood, and at the end of the year he was told to make a great pile of it. Then the cat said: "You must light the pile to-day, and throw me into the fire. You must not help me out, however I entreat you, but you must let me be consumed."
Jura answered: "I can't do that. I have had a good time with you. Why should I repay you in such an evil way?" The cat said: "If you don't do as I have said, you will be very unhappy. If you do it, you will be happy."
So Jura kindled the pile, and, when it was well alight, he picked up the cat and threw her into the fire. She wanted to escape from the fire, but he wouldn't let her go. At last he was so weary that he was forced to lie down, and soon he fell asleep. When he awoke, he opened his eyes, and behold! there was no ruin; he heard delightful music and saw a beautiful palace with crowds of servants. He was wondering at all this, when a splendidly dressed lady came up to him and asked him if he did not know her.
Jura said: "How should I know your ladyship? I never saw you before in my life."
The lady said: "I am that cat. Witches had put me under enchantment in the shape of a cat. Now we will go after your brothers who hated you so much and see how they are getting on."
She ordered her people to dress him in fine clothes, a fine carriage was prepared, and they drove off. As they were approaching the village, the lady said to her bridegroom: "Put your old clothes on." Then she called an old, ragged beggarwoman and sent him with her. She herself remained outside of the village.
When the brothers saw Jura coming with the ragged beggarwoman, they shouted: "He is bringing home an old ragged bride, and he's in rags too." The other brothers were married too, and they were pretty badly off, so they turned him out and wouldn't have him at home.
So Jura went out of the village; he changed his clothes and drove back with the lady to his brothers' cottage. When the carriage stopped before the cottage, the brothers said: "What a fine carriage! Who is that noble lord and the beautiful lady who have come to our cottage?" They did not recognize their brother.
So she said: "Look here. You were always hard on your brother, always sneering at him, and now you are badly off enough, while he is getting on splendidly. If you mend your ways, you will get on too."
Afterwards she gave them some money and went away with Jura.
Friday, January 9, 2009
Dreaming of heavenly things, just wrapped in angels wings
To catch every tear, whisper ‘Jesus is here’
She with him every night, she’s engulfed in his light
There is no more pain, no more fright
She’s with Jesus tonight
Dreaming of heavenly things, of Jesus and mansion scenes
He holds me so tight, whispers ‘Everything is alright’
She’s with me tonight; she’s dancing, dancing in my light
There was no hurt, no more fear
For I was always near
Know I love you
I love you so much, I hold you so near
Know that she’ll always be forever, forever with me
One day, when the time is right, you’ll be here too
You can dance with her in my light and hear the angels all night
And see those heavenly things, that are found in your dreams
Dreaming of heavenly things, Jesus tell the angels ‘sing’
Such a beautiful sound, all I feel is love all round
You’re with me tonight; cast your pain in the light
Let me take your hurt and your fear
I’ll always be here, with my angels, here with my angels
Just listen to them sing… I love you, I’m always here.