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The night I was born again


I found an old journal that I used to log my personal bible studies. It made me think of how I began “living for Christ”. When I was 10 years old, my mother took me to a gospel concert for my favorite artist, DeLeon Richards.  I remember sitting in the nose bleed section and listening to the opening choirs, anxiously waiting for DeLeon’s performance. She was my idol…nationally known, only 12 years old and “sold out” for Christ. Finally, she performed. I remember being entranced by her performance. When there was an altar call for lost souls to come to Christ, I hesitated a little but remember running down the coliseum steps…my mother far behind. I had no idea what was really going on or why I was going, I just knew I had to get down to the stage. When I got there, I pushed my way to the front so that I could see her closer. She was singing a slow song while a minister beckoned for more souls. People were crying beside me and behind me. Some were passing out. I remember when the minister began the sinner’s prayer, I lifted my hands in surrender and repeated obediently. After the prayer, the crowd cheered and people danced with joy…but I began to cry. And I cried so hard that my mother took me to the bathroom and asked me why I was crying so hard. I told her, “Because I love Him, Mama.” I remember so clearly how deep my sorrow felt…I was crying from the pit of my stomach. I felt like I had finally gotten just what my 10-year-old heart needed. So then started my life with Christ and I maintained the same intensity from that night for another 12 years. 


This morning, the Disney channel premiered their new show, Imagination Movers.  Its a show about four guys who solve mysteries and play songs.  I give it 2 thumbs up.  The guys are young, hip and appropriately masculine.  I was beginning to wonder about the thought machine behind Playhouse Disney.  I'll just say that the shows with male musicians (namely the Doodlebops and The Wiggles) are hardly your typical males.  Nonetheless, my daughter loves The Wiggles and their CD is on regular rotation for the morning rides to daycare.  The Doodlebops, on the other hand...I refuse to let the money for my monthly cable bill go to support them.  But, the Imagination Movers have something special.  Its great music, cute and simple comedy and charismatic characters.  My only critique... Ladybug likes being able to dance along.  I would suggest adding some simple choreograpy with their songs.  Overall, Ladybug gave it 4 jumps up with both feet off the ground (those with with kids will get that one).  Check it out with your toddlers and preschoolers.  I highly recommend it.

Hurricane Blues

We’re stuck indoors this morning and its taking everything in me not to open my door and release my 12 week old labrador out into Hurricane Hanna.  I’ve cleaned up 4 accidents because she’s too afraid of the wind and rain to pee outside.  On top of that, she’s bored and getting into everything that she knows she’ll get in trouble for.  When I caught her on top of my end table with a leaf from one of my houseplants in her teeth, I knew I had to lock her up before my blood pressure forced me into cardiac arrest.  I’m not sure that’s even possible but something was causing my chest to tighten.  So, I spared her life and put her in her kennel, after she sprinted about 4 laps around my coffee table.  I figured about 30 minutes of incarceration would be enough time for me to relax over a cup of hot green tea while Ladybug (my 3 year old) ate her oatmeal.  After I closed and locked the door to Jessie’s kennel, I let out a deep sigh and looked at the clock.  It was 9am and we had only been awake for 2 hours.  I turned to Jessie who was crouching and watching me through the metal bars with her ears pulled forward as if she was ready for a stand-off.  As soon as my shoulders slumped in despair, Jessie plopped sideways and huffed.  We both knew it was going to be a looooong day.

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Elergy (2008)

If you haven’t seen Elergy, you may want to stop reading as my commentary may contain spoilers. The movie was so painfully good, I actually took notes in the theatre.
 
The movie is about an older college professor, David, and his life told through his relationships with others around him. Divorced years ago, he spends his latter years in meaningless sexual relationships, mostly with his former graduate students. He figured if he kept many different women around him, he would never be lonely. He kept one relationship constant, a sexual relationship with a woman close his age that has lasted about 20 years. For him, she is his stability, his reminder of the confident man he prided himself on being, the playboy and the intellectual who views commitment and modern-day monogamy as Puritanistic and maladaptive.
 
“When you make love to a woman, you get revenge for the all things that have defeated you.” -David 
 
After meeting Consuela after her semester in his class ended, he found himself in a place that he couldn’t synchronize his heart and mind. He became intensely drawn to her and smitten by her sincerity and genuine beauty. 
 
“Something about [her] invites formalities.” -David
“She is a throwback from a completely different time.” -David 
“Can you find anyone so enchanting without sex? No. No one.” -David
 
David began to act uncharacteristically towards her. Jealousy, longing and insecurity haunted him daily and more heavily the longer he was with her. He often emptied his conscience with his best friend George who counseled him that he was only fooling himself and needed to grow up and let go of the fantasy that it could ever work with this young woman. He advised him realize that he’s only enticed by the idea of Consuela but could never really see her for who she was.
 
“Beautiful women are invisible. No one sees the person; they only see the shell.” -George
 
After constantly denying Consuela the ability to embrace him into her life, David lost her and didn’t hear from her for years. In the midst of his grief over losing Consuela, his best friend George died. He suddenly realized that in his fight to maintain his independence, he created his own lonely prison. He realized that he loved Consuela so much that he was terrified to know how she saw him in her eyes. While struggling to get back to normal, his relationship with his adult son also begins to evolve. There is finally a hope that his son will be able to move past his anger about his father leaving his mother, as he deals with problems in his own marriage.
 
As things begin to return to a functional pattern, David receives a terrifying phone call from Consuela. He dreads the worst and braced himself to hear that she was engaged to another, younger man. Instead, he learns something much more terrifying that makes him realize that he lost so much and wasted valuable time attempting to protect himself from just what he had become, old and alone. As Consuela begins to take on his same fears and isolationism, he finally releases his fears to be there for her. 
 
The dialog was intellectual and meditative. Great acting and great story line. This is one that’s going to keep me pondering over it for quite sometime.
 
If you’ve seen it, I would LOVE to know what you thought of it.

OhHawai'i

Writer's Block: The Meaning of Love

What does love mean to you, and why? Have you always felt this way?
I love this question.  Having been married and now divorced, I have contemplated this question many times.  I think love is an all-encompassing word for projecting your own feelings of companionship, loyalty, trust, duty and longing onto another person, place, thing, or idea rather it returns those same emotions or not.  It takes on its own form and begins to exist by itself.  You begin doing things in the name of love or overlooking things....sacrificing things.  I think love often gets confused with attachment.  I don't think the true meaning of love has anything to do with emotion or attachment.  I think it has more to do with selflessness and the taking on a "duty" or position that doesn't pose a benefit to you.  I would have liked my marriage to be negotiated like a business deal.  By my definition, I loved my husband.  When I was wronged the first time, although the attachment suffered, I remained devoted to my duties as wife and friend and did all I could to keep the marriage functioning.  After the 5th affair, I finally separated but my devotion to my duties was the hardest habit to break.  I was no longer physically attracted to him and felt mostly anger and disappointment (rather than romantic love) and I wondered if I actually ever loved him.  But I think back now to how hard I tried to make sure he still had every opportunity to be a father to our daughter, to make amends with me and show me that there was some effort to remedy the broken marriage, despite how I felt about keeping the marriage together, forgiving him enough to make my broken heart completely vulnerable again.  Growing up, love to me was "patient, kind, long-suffering, keeps no record of wrongs".  "For God so loved the world, He gave His only Son."  Now, I have no idea what that means anymore...but that's another entry.

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black, boy, coloring
oohawaii
Founder of the Daydreaming Adults Society

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