Sunday, January 24, 2010

::something to think about::

So I've been trying to figure out what to post about tonight. I contemplated telling my job story that I had promised to write about. Although, now I do not think there is even a point in doing that. But I've been doing some thinking and realize what really has been on my heart for the past several months. This thinking is related to thoughts and feelings that I have had for a while. I was reminded just a few minutes ago when I was going through a notebook that I have that is filled with "songs" that I have written. Most are from my freshman and sophomore year of college. Those "songs" more so lyrics that I have that could eventually have music put to them...but that will probably never happen seeing how they are more my feelings on paper. A lot of what I had written about is how lonely I felt. How far I felt from God. How far I was falling away from Him. How broken my heart was over silly things like boys. It's funny to me how much I felt about certain things....especially relating to boys. With one boy in mind for the particular time period that I was writing. I guess I liked him a lot more than I thought I did. Although he was more of a "rebound" for me seeing as how the boy I was in love with had a girl. But it has seemed like every guy I have ever liked has always had another girl. I'm not the kind of girl to like guys with girlfriends...but in one case I didn't know the guy had a girlfriend. But all these guys I seem to fall in like with...and sometimes a lot more serious than I should, have a girl in their life that they are taken with. I'm never the taker of their affections. Anyways I seem to get off track and go random places. So back to boy from senior year of high school who I was in "love" with. His particular girl and he are no longer together, but now he has someone else. I've already posted about this. I'm sure you are thinking, seriously, Jilene, get OVER it. I know, I know. And I also know that he and I were not meant for each other. But I've had a lot of reminders of him over the past few months and it brings back a lot of the feelings I had after it was "over". I was devastated and literally heartbroken. I mean I really did feel my heart breaking. It hurt. It hurt a lot. I mean obviously my heart didn't literally "literally" break into pieces. But I had the feeling where my chest hurt and I couldn't breathe.

I feel like I've had a lot of heartbreak in my life. Heartbreak not all related to boys though. Although I admit to being boy crazy. I'm working on that right now. But it is hard when you have friends that say oh you should date so and so, or we're going to try to fix you up with this guy. Hmph. Well, let me just's probably best that those things are not said to me...because I begin to make up fantasies about it. Then I have to come back down to reality and remind myself that those are just things I've made up in my head. Not necessarily going to come true. Anyways, back to the topic of heartbreak. My most recent heartbreak was at the loss of my Meemau--for those that don't know she was my great-grandmother. My heart is still broken from that loss. My heart still hurts and aches at the thoughts of her not being up in her big white house on Dale Drive in Silver Spring. I still feel like I should be able to go jump in the car and drive the 350 or so miles to her house. Park my car get out and walk up the sidewalk to her back door. Ring the doorbell and her come to the door to answer it. I will walk in and the bells will jingle on the back of the door, the bells her dogs use to ring to signal they had to go outside to use the potty. I can still smell her smell. Feel the feel of how her house makes me feel. To me, my Meemau's house is home. Her house was safe. She was safe. It was filled with love. And my heart breaks and tears fill my eyes now as I remember it. I'll be going to her house in a few weeks to go get some things out of it. I can't even think of how to prepare myself for the emptiness that is going to be there. Most of the furniture has been removed. And Meemau will not be there. I don't even know how I'll be able to bear it.

January is a month that was filled with heartbreak in my family 22 years ago. January 4th, 1988, my Nana, my mom's mom, died of colon cancer. I was one years old. Two weeks later on January 19th, my Grandma, my dad's mom, died of a heart attack. So much pain and sorrow were felt within my family that month 22 years ago. I was too young to even remember them, but I feel the heartbreak of having never gotten to know them. I have heard countless stories about how they were both such strong women of faith. Good, sweet, precious women. I have heard how much they loved me and doted over me. For my Nana, I was her first grand-daughter, and to this day I still am the only grand-daughter. I envy the people I know that had the chance to get to know their grandmothers. I know that if they were still alive...or had I gotten the chance to know them longer than a year of my life, I would have loved them dearly. That is why I was so close to my Meemau. She was the closest thing to a grandmother that I had. 14 years later, my Papa, my mom's dad, died of lung cancer. My Papa was one of the sweetest men I have ever met. My heart broke when he passed away. My heart still breaks whenever I look at the many pictures we have of him in our house and in photo albums. It's so hard to grasp the concept of death. I know that means your body no longer has life in it. But the fact that you will never see that person again on this earth....I just have this child-like concept of them being somewhere far away on vacation and they'll never come home again. It's one of the things that I hate the most. The permanent separation. I have hope though because I will see them all again some day when I get to heaven. Which brings me to my next thoughts about heartbreak.

In my lifetime alone, there have been numerous extremely devastating natural disasters, vicious dictators, genocides of innocent people, terrorist attacks, wars, disease, famines, etc. The last 7 years we have seen the war in the Middle East. Countless lives have been lost. These past couple of weeks have seen the devastation that an earthquake can bring to a poor country like Haiti. So many lives lost. People put out of their homes. The living conditions that were already unlivable are now so much worse. Children left orphaned. Mothers and fathers left childless. So many people suffering from the afflictions of disease and injuries due to the destruction from the quake. I think about all the people down there how have no food, clean water, proper medical attention or facilities, or place to live. Here I am sitting in my house that has heat, water, a well-stocked refrigerator, and a nice bed to sleep in. I have clothes on my back and a car to drive. My parents and brother are still alive and well. I have so many modern conveniences like a TV, computer, cellphone and a car. I am blessed beyond measure. I am also selfish. I am spoiled. I'm so far removed from the devastation and heartbreak. I cannot even begin to imagine what those people must be going through. I've never had to deal with any living conditions as terrible as that. Yes, my family has had their share of struggle. But nothing that could even put a dent in the struggle of the people of Haiti.

I don't have words to describe how thankful I am to live in the country that I live in. Thankful to have the things that I do have. God has been very gracious to me. He has placed me in a comfortable place. So I as I sit here and reflect about the heartbreak in my own life and the heartbreak of so many many millions of people around the world, I remember two things. The first thing: God is in control. Secondly, the pain of this world is only temporary. I get so caught up in my pain, struggles, and heartbreak that I become very selfish and cannot see anything outside of my own self. I forget that God is in control. God is all powerful. God also knows what I am going through. He knows heartbreak. He sent Jesus, His only Son, to this earth. He sent Him here knowing that Jesus would die. He knew that when He died He had to turn His back on Him while all the sins of the world were poured on Him and He bore our punishment. What greater heartbreak is there. For a father to have to turn his back on his son. To know he was sending his son to a place where he would go and die. That people would be so hateful and send him to his death. Even though he did not deserve it. God also deals with the heartbreak of rejection of the people He loves so much. I mean, like I just said, He sent His only Son to the world to die for us. For people to reject God is like giving Him the biggest slap in the face. This passage from Isaiah talks about Jesus coming to earth and how He was treated and His death, and it helps me put some things into perspective.

Isaiah 53
1 Who has believed our message and to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?
2 He grew up before him like a tender shoot, and like a root out of dry ground. He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.
3 He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.
4 Surely he took up our infirmities and carried our sorrows, yet we considered him stricken by God, smitten by him, and afflicted.
5 But he was pierced for our transgressions, he was crushed for our iniquities; the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, and by his wounds we are healed.
6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way; and the LORD has laid on him the iniquity of us all.
7 He was oppressed and afflicted, yet he did not open his mouth; he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, so he did not open his mouth.
8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away. And who can speak of his descendants? For he was cut off from the land of the living; for the transgression of my people he was stricken.
9 He was assigned a grave with the wicked, and with the rich in his death, though he had done no violence, nor was any deceit in his mouth.
10 Yet it was the LORD's will to crush him and cause him to suffer, and though the LORD makes his life a guilt offering, he will see his offspring and prolong his days, and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand.
11 After the suffering of his soul, he will see the light of life and be satisfied; by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many, and he will bear their iniquities.
12 Therefore I will give him a portion among the great, and he will divide the spoils with the strong, because he poured out his life unto death, and was numbered with the transgressors. For he bore the sin of many, and made intercession for the transgressors.

I think I need to read this passage every day. It is a good reminder of what Jesus did on this earth. Jesus had struggles while he was on this earth. I mean, He was the Son of God but treated like a criminal. The passage is a good reminder of God's love for us. It also shows His plan the whole time. He knew we would be a fallen people. He knew evil would be chosen in the beginning, but He also knew that Good would prevail in the end. Jesus conquered death. Jesus paid for our sins. Jesus came to earth to die for His people. To give the ultimate sacrifice and bestow upon us the most precious gift. Life. He gave His life for ours. That is something we do not deserve. No matter how good of a person you may think you are, it's time to re-examine your life. I know I think, oh I've done good things, and's all about me. When in reality it's not about me. So when I think about all the many times I've struggled in my life and the heartbreaks I've felt, I need to remember and focus on the fact that I am a broken person. I need God's love, mercy, grace and forgiveness every day. All the times I have felt furthest away from Him are the times He was really trying to get my attention. My full attention. He wanted me to come to Him and call on Him to save me, to help me, lead me, hold me, and protect me. That's what He wants from us. The relationship. The one where we are fully dependent on Him. Because we cannot do this life alone. We may think that we can, but we really can't. Our society, especially in this country, has lead us to believe that we are suppose to be independent people, and only the fittest will survive. Well, let me tell you, in Him the weak are made strong, the broken made whole, and life is made new. Let me challenge you to remember this. Especially in times of great struggle, pain and heartbreak. He is always there. He will never leave you. All you have to do is call on Him and He will carry you through.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

a quick post...

So I've had a lot go on in the last week or so. I don't have time to post about it all but I'll just put it real fast...kind of like a taste of my next post[who knows when that will be] but yeah. So in a nutshell I thought I was getting fired from my job then almost decided to quit last week only to decide to stick it out for a few more weeks/months. I'm praying it's weeks, but I have to pursue another job if that's going to happen...or end up working for my dad....which is something I could easily do but I'm not sure if I want to do it....or if that would be best for me. So right now I'm trying to figure it all out while trying to survive work which equals not killing my back anymore than has already been "killed"....and trying not to catch the nasty stomach bug that's been going around. Gotta love working with kids. Especially ones that poop all the time. And speaking of poop....

I accidentally stuck my finger in a really super nasty poop today. Not the highlight of my day.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

some thoughts

Being in the 9th day of 2010, I figured I should blog. Just because. And just because I'm hoping to get a little bit better about keeping up with this thing. I don't always know what to say on here...not knowing who all reads/follows me on here. I've contemplated blogging on different issues, writing down song ideas, keeping everyone updated on my oh-so-busy and very social life--haha. I mean as of now, 2010 has not been very busy, crazy, or social for me. I've worked, and done my church obligations. I made that sound bad, I don't know what other word to use for me teaching the two year old class every Sunday. I also had practice for Engage this past Tuesday night. Other than that, I've stayed home and relaxed. It's been so cold, I've not wanted to leave the house. I did hang out with two of my good friends who I've not seen in a while. It's always good to see people you haven't seen in a long time and catch up with them about their lives...until your entire conversations with people are completely revolved around every person we know who is either dating someone new, engaged, gotten married, or pregnant. That seems to be the major topic lately, seeing as how so many more people that I know and am friends with have gotten engaged over the past 6 months to a year. It's pretty crazy. Slowly but surely, my friend group is getting married off. There are still several who are in the same boat as me. Single and no signs of that changing....although things can happen super fast as it has for a few recently engaged friends of mine. It's crazy how quickly things can change. Yes, I do say this a lot but it still amazes me. I mean this time last year I was a senior in college. Now, one year later, I have a full time job. That is a lot of change. I mean not much else has changed in my life. But it is a lot different to not be getting ready to go back to school for the spring semester. It does make me a little sad, just because I remember so many good memories from my last semester at Campbell. But, alas, life is still good. Life is good because I have everything that I need. I'm not a poor, starving college graduate without a job. I have a job, a place to live, friends, etc. There are a couple things that I would like to have, but patience is a virtue. So like I said in my last post....I'm going to try to be a more virtuous person in 2010. I am proud of myself though. I'm working towards my goal of getting in shape. I went to the Y this week and am hoping to go at least 3 mornings a week. I get up and go around 6:15ish so I can get a workout in before I go to work. That way, I have nights free to do whatever. So I really can't complain, I don't have a lot of hardships right now. There are things that I make too hard, but my life isn't hard. So for that I'm thankful. And I know I'm very blessed. So I guess I'll close down my blog for tonight with this--it's one of my favorite verses and one that really has a lot of meaning to the place that I am in my life right now: "Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed" Proverbs 16:3--I urge you to think about the meaning of the verse--It doesn't say we will get what we want---but that if we commit what we do to God, by surrendering up our lives to Him, His plan for our life will richly bless us in ways we might never have thought, therefore, our plans will succeed. Because by surrendering we've allowed His plans to become our plans--letting God have reign over our lives--it's the best way to go.

Sunday, January 3, 2010


Every year I make resolutions, which I typically fail to keep. This year, I'm hoping that in my more mature age, that maybe, just maybe, I'll be able to keep some of the resolutions I would like to make. So in order to maybe keep myself accountable, I'm going to record them.

So this year, I resolve to:

1. Get in shape--it's been on the agenda for about the past 6ish years....with a variance of up and down success. I'm hoping 2010 will be the year, I get in shape and stay in shape.
2. Learn how to be content being single. This one will only be accomplished by fully relying on God to help me learn how to find my identity in Him by only pursuing and seeking His love and affirmation--and not seeking to find it in the affirmation of a boy.
3. Read my Bible and pray on a regular basis. I really do fail miserably at this every year. I might do it good for a month or two...but then I get lazy and "busy".
4. Decide what I want to do with the rest of my life i.e. graduate school, applying to another job, etc.
5. Be a more virtuous person. See:

So that about sums up what I'm hoping to really focus on in this new year. I can't believe it's already 2010.

Happy New Year, my friends. I pray that God uses 2010 to show you new and amazing things and blesses your lives greatly.