living. loving. laughing.

living.  loving.  laughing.

Thursday, April 20, 2006

Oh Tahoe:)

I'm sitting in my cousin's living room in Reno, Nevada, having just spent the past 48 hours at the Mtn. Lodge in Tahoe. Season 10 of Friends is playing in the background. The fake fireplace was just flicked to the "on" position. Leaving on Monday was as stressful as they come, but now, nearing the end of the day, before flying back tonite, I am rested...relaxed...and ready to RUN. I loved CS Lewis' words today: "Remember one is given strength to bear what happens to one, but not the 100 and 1 different things that might happen." So again, I stop the whining and complaining of my busyness (and of what HASN'T happened...), and choose to be stoked about the days to come.

The Mtn. Lodge: mmm. It's amazing. It's a Young Life adventure-discipleship camp in the middle of the Tahoe mountains; only 50-60 kids come a week, so the staff is pretty small as well. 6 interns...6 summer staff...and 3 of us on the assignment team! Within hours, though, I felt HOME. I felt MYSELF. I felt at PEACE. And I felt SO excited and AMPED about what's to come July 2-28. As well, the team just seemed like a FAMILY: Christie, our camp manager, is an area director down in San Francisco, and she's just rad. About a head taller than me, she was disgusted to find that gummy worms are made from elephant toenails. But it's still her favorite snack. Then there's Nobie, our head leader: Nobie's 65 and a kick in the pants. "Norbert," as I'm attempting to call him, just makes you want to slow down and BREATHE in life, yet I know he's going to kick my butt on the biking trails this summer.

Needless to say, I'm pretty stoked.

Yesterday I realized that my "lesson learned" this past week was in regards to ETERNITY. I finally finished up book 7 of the Chronicles of Narnia, and I couldn't help but think about how much MORE beautiful, MORE glorious, MORE majestic life is going to be in the "new" Narnia, er...heaven. Yesterday we went snowshoeing through some back country; the trees were as green as they come; the sky was as blue as the bluest blue in the Crayola box, and the sun was so WARM against my skin, I tingled with happiness. And as beautiful as that picture in my mind was yesterday, how much MORE beautiful it's going to be in heaven. Simultaneously, our theme for the summer is following Jesus for can I be teaching kids and leaders what it means to look at the eternal and RUN towards it? Our time here on earth is so insignificant in the long run, yet we seem to pour all time and energy into it.

I am refreshingly excited about life, and I think that's the way it's supposed to be.

Friday, April 14, 2006

here's the team!

So fun! Here we are: July, 2nd session assignment for the Mtn. Lodge: Christie, Nobie and me. :)

win a on!

Once upon a time I went to a Mariner's game, ate pretzels and cheese and got to hear insights on the game from buddy Crystal. She's a smart one. And she's got an amazing story. It was a delight just BEING. While taking her home, I got to drive on this great curve...much to my own delight, I asked her if she ever liked pretending to be a racecar driver. (Okay, not the smartest thing a Young Life leader can ask, but it's one of my secret selves). "," she replied. "And I drive a minivan." Apparently Raul the Jetta is a bit more racecar-savvy than her friend the Voyager.

My friend Derek just started a blog, and he's REALLY good at updating it: The Olson Fam.

Shawn (my boss) and Anna just had a baby! YAY for little Moriah Anne, who's now been in this world for two and a half weeks. And 6 bonus points if you know where the name Moriah comes from....I'll send you a lollipop in the mail too!

My sister Aleah's been traveling the continents...God bless Africa.

Due to moving out in a couple of weeks now, this month is officially "lay low" month; already I've read/finished three books: The Divine Conquest (Tozer), A Severe Mercy (???), and book 6 of the Chronicles of Narnia! One more of the Lewis set and I'm good to go! I'm trying to not buy any new books and simply get through the books already on my shelf...we'll see how long this lasts, so recommendations are always welcome! New to-be roommate Gracie is really cool; her older sister Gaylynn and I were on work crew 10 years ago, so it's fun thinking about the connections that have transpired over the years. We'll be moving in together in the beginning of May...

This weekend I head up to Seattle to celebrate Easter, hang out with friends and my Seattle "family," and sing at church. On Monday night I fly down to Reno/Tahoe for summer assignment team training; basically, our team of YL staff who will all be at the Mtn. Lodge this summer, get together to plan/pray/be together...I hear there's still 15 feet of snow. Oh boy. Jenn/Aqua, you going to be around?

Much love to all. Win a lollipop. Email me your snail-mail address if you didn't receive the last YL update, and want to get that in the mail next week. Blessings, c.

Friday, April 07, 2006

share cropping, peace and the M's

This morning I went to the gym to bike and read my Young Life/Jesus book of the month: The Divine Conquest. Now there is nothing worse than being in the middle of a fabulous Tozer sentence like, "Only the Spirit can save us from the numbing unreality of Spiritless Christianity..." to be interrupted by an old man's outpouring of his inner, well, flatulence. I guess I should have taken note of my surroundings before firmly planting myself on the bike, so I didn't heed warning of the influx of oldies around 9 am. But there he was. I heard him before I saw him. And in between his power walking on the treadmill, a sharecropping of farts came forth. One for every step. I started laughing so hard [Marsh, we're talking YOUR kind of laugh!], and any previous concentration on the book was quickly gone. Before I knew it, the situation worsened, as a distinctive smell start wafting through the air. Do I risk losing the calories burned to move to another bike? Should I mention to him that I heard him, smelled him, and that he's in a public place? Oh Bally's....

This morning in Campaigners we talked about PEACE. What is peace? What are symbols of peace? Is it possible to experience peace in the midst of chaos and turmoil? What does it mean to have inner peace even when the outside doesn't seem to agree? Peace seems to be my lesson of the week. In addition to life seeming to throw a couple of curveballs my way, two dear oldies from my childhood passed away, Mrs. Givens, my piano teacher of 9 years, and Jerry, my neighbor of 20 years. So this morning I showed my 8th grade girls Jerry's funeral program; here was a man who, due to polio, spent almost 50 years of his life confined to a wheelchair. According to the world's standards, Jerry's life was chaos. But according to Jerry, his life was far from it. Instead, when you were around him, you experienced pure joy. His humor was like medicine to the bones, one sarcastically witty comment at a time. He had SO much to complain about, yet he chose not to...he had an inner peace about him that didn't allow for his own momentary troubles to affect another person's. Can I apply those same principles to my own life? His life reminded me of Morrie Schwartz from the book (and now movie), Tuesdays with Morrie; I read this book to different groups of students every year because Morrie stood for the same concepts as Jerry. He was dying in the book...yet he cared more about Mitch (Albom, the author) than he did about his own light, momentary struggles. "...our present sufferings are not worth comparing with the glory that will be revealed in us..." - Romans 8:18. Hmm.

Tonite one of my Young Life kids is taking ME to a Mariner's game! How rad it that?! The one stipulation was that I drive...but hey, free M's tickets and awesome one-on-one time with a kid?! I'm in!

Saturday, April 01, 2006

an idiot's guide to miss mac

1. Live in the northwest, where it rains.

2. Look out your window 15 times before going on a run, determine that the sky is dark and stormy, but since it's not raining NOW, decide that - surely! - the rain won't come until tonite.

3. Since you're going on a long run, decide to only wear a t-shirt, so you can really breathe....

4. Wear cotton-spandex pants that collect moisture well.

5. Notice that it's starting to sprinkle 10 minutes into the run, but do nothing.

6. Notice that the sprinkling is turning into droplets, 1 minute later. Keep on trucking.

7. Notice that the pellets of rain are coming down harder and have now turned into HAIL, bouncing off your breathable tee. Hey, at least you're able to breathe!

8. Start laughing by this point because it's a classic "but I'm just trying to train for the half marathon!" move.

9. Start taking a short-cut home, continue laughing, and this time start waving at the cars that pass by, wishing they would stop and offer you a ride.

10. Pass by three middle school friends who got caught walking the dog in the rain and briefly chat for 15 seconds.

11. Be glad that since you're completely soaked now, no one can tell the rain from the sweat!

12. Laugh at the irony of it all, since now, an hour later, the sun and blue skies are breaking through.

Ranada, if you're reading this, it's dedicated to you....43 days until our 13.1. Friends, learn from my mistakes, and have a good run. cm:)