school is cool!

Posted by Teen Bean

ahhh what a full on two weeks. working full time and being in graduate school wasn't that bad last semester, but this semester i swear there is no getting ahead. Last week i had a full on week at work... lot of bacteria to grow and people to test for gonorrhea and chlamydia... yeah! i was sooo looking forward to the weekend.. then thursday came i went to class and found out that i forgot i had weekend class...

yikes 12+ hour of class over three days is just exhausting... plus after a full week of work... and then its just straight back into another full on week of work and assignments and "ahhhh!" i mean i totally love the subject that we are studying it just is like "wow, i need to be on my a-game or i am going to just be in the mist of epic fail" thanx be to jesus i have good friends here and we have set up a very helpful.. texting circle of "did you notice this assignment due date" ... saved my butt a few times it has (said in my most authentic yoda voice!)

that being said THANK GOD IT IS FRIDAY! i have just walked in the door from work and tho i do have a mountain of books to read and a paper to write this weekend... i have 65 hours before i have to walk through the doors of work again... i get to go to a birthday party tomorrow night (yeah!)

i've schedule a bubble bath and beer for later on that night...

and plan on watching a good amount of disney cartoons... ahhh i love the weekend... i live for the weekend...

must clean

Posted by Teen Bean

my apt is actually so disgusting right now... that i think it would be easier to just move out then clean... ha ha... must clean today!!! its harder when you live on your own and you can't justify an of the mess on to anyone else.. nope this is all my fault... and AND... i am the only one here to clean it up...

i need roommates that i can take advantage of! mwahahahaha

feel good statistic from my Spirituality and Justice Course

Posted by Teen Bean

half of the wealth is held by only 2% of the world's adults

two thirds of the planet lives in poverty
the three richest persons have more assets than the combined GNP (Gross National Product) of the poorest forty-eight nations, a quarter of the world countries.

Poorer countries now spend as much as $13 in debt repayment for every one dollar they receive in new loans..

The United States and Europe spent nearly 90% as much on luxury items as the amount of money that would be needed to provide safe drinking water and basic sanitation for those in our global village who do not have these necessities now.

In 2004 a tsunami in the Indian Ocean left 300,000 dead... Every Hour more than 1,200 children die of preventable diseases, which is equivalent to three tsunamis each month.

For one days military spending, we could virtually eliminate malaria in Africa.

If the world as we know it today was proportionally reduced to a village of 100 people, 51 would be male, 49 would be female; 60 would be Asian, 14 African, 11 European, 14 American, and 1 Australian or New Zealander. From a faith perspective, 33 would be christian, 20 muslim, 14 atheist, agnostic, or nonrelitgious, 13 hindu, 13 from other religions, 6 Buddhist, and 1 Jewish. Fifty would not have reliable sources of food and are hungry some or all the time, and 30 suffer malnutrition. Thirty- one do not have electricity, 18 are unable to read, 15 do not have access to safe drinking water. Only 16 people have access to the internet. only 12 own an automobile. And only two have college educations. 48 struggle to live on two dollars or less....

Statistic from "Globalization, Spirituality, and Justice" Daniel G. Groody.

i should break up with me and shelve the leader dream!

Posted by Teen Bean

You know when you say something about the church... expect there to be consequences.

i've learned a valuable lesson over the last two days and these are the following reason that i am breaking up with myself:

#1. I'm Self Motivated: i don't want to build the church for Christ sake. I want to be about adventure. Love has never been a motivator... let alone the authentic love of chirst. I don't even understand the love of Christ... let alone the ability to reflect it.

#2 I'm arrogant: i have no ability to speak in love. I don't even understand the concept. Humility to me means Humiliation. I've never want or desired after it. To be humble like they speak about in the bible, is something that is going to take me my whole life to master...

#3 I cause conflict: I have little if any ability to be a peace maker. I don't bring unity. Disagreements, conflict, and discord follow me ever where i go... because i bring them... no even worst i create them.

#4 I desire fame: nothing about anything i have ever done has been for any other reason that making myself look good. not for the sake of Christ, but for the sake of approval by the people i live around. I think at this moment in time i care more about hearing "well done" from man then "well done" from God.

..... a moment of pause....

now i understand why my life is the way it is.

i lack the internal drive of what makes a good leader a great leader and that is a true love of God.

I think out of everyone that comment on my last blog post Brian hit the nail right on the head. I am in no place to say anything about church, relationships, or leadership.... i barely know how to love God.

I had a great conversation today with Jon Petersen (24-7 Prayers community leader). I asked him for reasons that communities fail... he had 4 reason to give

1. Motivation for adventure over Motivation to Love
2. Arrogance
3. Disunity
4. Focus on outward forms

I sit here absolutely ashamed. As i hold up the reasons for community failure to my true life motivators, is it any surprise that the reflection i am staring into screams... Epic Fail!?!

hmm i'm not depressed, im just exhausted. It took so much work to get me this far... and now im just seeing i've only just begun. I don't have time to lead or pioneer anything... its going to take me my whole life to get a handle on this. so, maybe in another 25 years i'll crack open some of the question i have right now about church, leadership, and God... till then i'm taking a back seat for a while... i've got a lot of catching up to do....

breaking up with me is taking all that ii used to find identity in and letting christ be that identity... what the hell does that look like?

should i break up with the church?

Posted by Teen Bean

sense i moved to seattle i felt strongly about connect up with "normal american" church if you will. But i also wanted nothing normal about it. I had spent the summer reading through Ephesian and had completely, 100%, fallen in love with the bride of Christ. I wanted to be near her... if only so maybe a little glitter of that bridal glow could fall on my head!

I started attending a relatively new church plant here and have been inspired by their display of Christ love. They obviously adore Jesus and have quite an adherence to living that out through forming small communities. Sure they would say the ever scary "make sure you are inviting your friends to sunday service" phrase, but really could i expect perfection?

You know finding a new church is like some messed up casual feminist dating scene. girl spot boy. girl thinks "i'd hit that'. girl flirts. boy is to lazy to react. girl approaches boy. boy still dosn't get it. girl tricks boy to a date. boy doesn't change. girl gets annoyed. boy doesn't get it. girl thinks "why the hell did i want this". girl tries to talk to boy. boy doesn't listen. girl finally gets pissed and leaves.

and we wonder why people have an issue with church (or dating for that matter!)

for the last 5 months i've been putting what i can into building a relationship with this church. I try and understand their vision, i try and support their systems, i try and ask the hard question, i tried to submit, i try and blend my hearts desires for missional community with their structures system.

once i asked our small group if we could meet at a coffee shop instead of just the back room at our church. the group was nice enough to accomodate and decided to cancel bible discussion and have a hang out night "per tina's suggestion" at the local coffee shop. not really the effect i was hoping to make. I rocked up with my bible and ordered my brew and sat down and wanted to chat about life and what issues there are and how the bible was really relevant to them. we started talking on how we are suppose to accept homosexuality. A real issue... in a real setting... in the real world. Yes i was aware that homosexuals might be around me, yes i was careful to speak in love, yes i wanted those around to know that i am concerned that homosexuals are being shunned by Christians, Yes i want homosexuals to know i love them, Yes i want homosexuals to know that I'm not going to judge them for their life style... so i said those things out loud.... my group leader wasn't happy.

time carries on...

i'm hungary for more of God. The small group i am in spends a half and hour to 45 min talking about how crazy homeless people are on the bus or how great the snacks are that night. then we crack open the bible for a half hour and lightly skim over 6-8 verses. The leader actually does a really good job at asking some hard questions, but he is responded to in such deafening silence, my insides cringe at the reality that i am surrounded by 8 to 10 adult christians that have nothing to say on a text that they claim is the "Living Voice of God"! really!!?? God is speaking and your going to sit there and fucking text on your phone?!!

then the night ends with optional prayer.... OPTIONAL!!!!!!!!???!!!!!

when do we pray all night? when do we get so consumed in talking to God that time just doesn't matter? when do we worship him... intimately... till tears run down our face, till our knees lock up, till our voice grows horse from calling out "HOLY SPIRIT COME SAVE US... PLEASE!"


the grass is green in this church. the kingdom they have built is golden. the beauty of what this church has, should have one effect and ONE EFFECT ONLY.... to run!!! with everything we have and offer the riches that God is in places that are completely void.... BUT WHY IS THAT NOT WHATS HAPPENING?

why is the message that they keep sending "now make sure you invite your friends to service" instead of "ok so get equipped so you can take what we have shown you here out to some place darker?" you don't have to go far to hit some really spiritually dark and poor places where i live.

Regardless i so saw the beauty of what this church is doing. The simply way they have loved me is phenomenal and they have blessed me multiple times. I wanted to honor that. I met up this weekend with my small group leaders because more than ever i am passionate about starting a more intentional prayer house. I have heard this church speak out time and time again how we are to live the values they are preaching from the front in our ever day lives, how they on purpose keep meetings and programs minimal so that we have to time and space to live out these values within the context of our lives. I wanted them to know how they have inspired me... how i wanted to run more intentionally for Christ. how i felt God was calling me to help gather people together who would pray, most fervently for this town, for our people, for his bride!

I asked them for wisdom. I asked them what they thought was the best way to move forward. their question to me....

"how often are you coming to church on sunday?"

what??? they know i can't come to church on sunday. they offer services only on sunday morning and my job requires me to work overnights. it impossible with my evening schedule of classes and night shift at work to be awake during the morning...

so i asked them... "what do you do with oddlings like me that can't make sunday church"

"well", they responded "the commitment to our church requires you to serve, to tithe, to be plugged into a small group, and to attend sunday morning services..." and then they just looked at me... expecting me to figure out a way to keep investing into this relationship.... (lazy ass boy!)

it was in this moment that i realized to them that no matter how committed i am ever day of the week to God, if i don't show face at their sunday morning service (which by the way they keep very seeker friendly... so no deep bible talking cuz God forbid you scare someone away by speaking out the truth of what is written in the bible.) then i am really not as serious about God as i am blabbering on about!

at which i begin to question why the hell i ever wanted to be in this relationship and then i start to question why i went about starting the relationship in the first place... and then i think "its about time we broke up!"

but as any good girl would consult her crew before breaking up with a boy... i to shall take a moment to ask my crew... what do you think?? should i break up??

do i really have to take down the christmas tree!

Posted by Teen Bean

i don't know it just seems harsh to take down my tree... and all my christmas decorations... they just are so festive...

and plus i plug the tree in every night before i leave for work and then when i come home... it feel like someone is here! ahhh i like that...

so i am leaving my tree up!

i don't care. i am going to decorate it different every month... the tree that keeps on celebrating... till it falls apart that is!

Joined a Newtwork community! Transform

Posted by Teen Bean

I think its really important to stay connected to the people who are involved in doing Gods work in the area. So i joined a missional community network. Its hosted on Ning... they have a blogging feature on there and i have decided that that is where i will regularly update any prayer/missional community updating. They do a good job of supporting each other and also give me a good place to process what is happening in this community process.

that way the more practical meeting up/ accountability/ get involved stuff will be available to the people i am living around. feel free to follow the building process it should be an interesting one!

Fasting Friday!

Posted by Teen Bean

So a couple days ago i was sitting in my closet... which i have tenderly turned into a prayer room... or prayer closet! i waas thinking about life and where i want to be... i think loads of my first semester in graduate school was to teach me to let go of my plans and be cool with what God has planned... (wow still totally needing to remember this... daily!)

but that beings said its weird to be here in my future... but now it is just my present... how does this keep happening? But there are a few things desperately pressing on my heart... so for that reason i have decided to spend the month of january fasting once a week. I figured Fridays would be good because first "Fasting Friday" sounds good... and also because its one of my favorite nights to go out... get dinner and have drinks... so giving it up will obviously show God how serious i am (ha ha! but really it about giving our best isnt it!)

The following topics are what i will desperately be hungering after

1. A vision for my thesis topic. I know i want it to incoperate boiler house/emergent church/ missional communities, but i am struggling to make a statement that is about this lifestyle that will be meaty enough to write a whole thesis on.

2. Clear direction in choosing a Practicum site. I have to partner with an organization that will let me learn from them, as well as do research for my thesis topic. I am really wanting to partner with a possible missional community that is just starting in Europe somewhere, but i haven't heard a clear clear calling yet.

3. Starting a prayer community/missional community/ mini boiler house project here in seattle in March 2010. A couple months back i really felt like God was giving me a green light on doing a very experimental 6 month community living/ prayer community/ discipleship project. I hesitate to say "start a prayer community" because i don't see it as something that will go on for much longer then 6 months (possibly a year!?!), but i just imagine a group of people who are very intentional about living out the raw christ, living together and encouraging each other to love God more, love each other more, and love the world more!

4. The future and building my relationship with Steve and know when its ok for us to be about each other and how in hell we are going to be about each other and what the freak we are suppose to do...

so o here is to the start of a new year... completely in a place, position, and relationships that this time last year i had no idea i would be about... cheers.. and if only this year goes half as well as last year... i'll be spot on!

Big Love

Posted by Teen Bean

There are times in life when the words used to explain life are not big enough. Over the last 10 days this has never been more true. Having steve come here to visit has been absolutely amazing. we had such a good christmas and such a good New Years it was incredible. It has been such an honor to learn what it really takes to be about loving and respecting someone the way God calls.

We got to do all the fun stuff that i have been to busy to do because of school and work... dinners out, bowling, movies, sunsets, walks, drinks, shopping.... and it was so different and so good to do them with Steve Lawton at my side. And every day that went by we kept just getting more more comfy with each other. the coolest thing was not just loving hanging out with steve lawton my boyfriend, but realizing how much i loved hanging out with Steve Lawton my best friend and forever person.

And steve is such a good boyfriend... spoiled me all week, making me tea, cooking me food, giving me nice things! Every day that passed i got more and more irritated with that phrase "i love you"... it just isn't enough to describe what i feel for steve... how can i be saying the same phrase that i said when we started this week... when i feel so much more now then, then?

there are few times in my life ... ok yeah never... where i've been faced with doing something that every part of me screams no, but I still have to go though with it. Taking steve to the airport was the epitome of heart breaking. The worst was standing at that awful gate and knowing we both, of our own free will, had to choose to walk away from each other. Again i found myself hating on that phrase "i love you" ... looking at steve and trying to say something that was big... to describe what i feel for him, that phrase "i love you" just isn't enough... then the walking away was like walking off a cliff that doesn't have a bottom... my stomach actually was ill at the thought of how harsh it was going to feel when i hit the bottom of that pit!

then the strangest thing happened... as i was walking to the car, trying to brace myself for hitting that bottom, all i could think about was every happy moment we had over the last 10 days... all the fun we had learning about each other, being best friends, making promises to each other... I sat in the car over looking the departure gate and found not one bit of hating at all... but just an overwhelming sense of happiness for all that i just got be a part of .... and at that moment i knew

i am in love... BIG LOVE!

heres to the beginning of my forever!