Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Jesus Camp

So I just watched Jesus Camp this morning. Hmmm...I don't know what to say haha. I rented it at Blockbuster a few nights ago. There was nothing else that looked interesting! Most of the good movies were rented out and I've always wanted to just see it.

I think that she has a good heart, but at the very least, her approach is all wrong.

The first thirteen minutes with the kids seizing and shouting in tongues even freaked me out! And I grew up in an Assembly of God church! I could only imagine how someone unchurched felt when they saw that.

And teaching kids about abortion? What was that about?? I don't think they're even old enough to know what to think. And taping "LIFE" on their lips....o man.

One nine year old said that depending on what church you go to, Jesus may or may not be there. That's sad. She said that if you're not up shouting, dancing and exclaiming "Hallelujah, Thank you Jesus" then He's not there. I personally think that Jesus is with you at all times. I love how Rob Bell puts it in his Breathe video when he talks about how everyone is breathing his unspeakable name. Everyone. To live you speak his name, to die you speak his name one last time. I love it. Another blog.... :)

Ted Haggard describes what evangelism is to little kids as if it's a marketing ploy stating that the kid's "love it". That when the teachers are telling them that they're animals, they're telling them that God loves them so they, in a sense, buy in. At least that's how I took it. Which is true -- but it just sounded wrong.

Becky (is that her name?), at one of their nightly services, tells the children that they are hypocrites. That some of the kids are christians but aren't acting like it all the time, at home and at school. I felt sorry for the kids. They're kids. They show them all crying and I could only think about how guilty they were made to feel. Guilt. Great "tactic". This is coming from the lady that in the first five minutes talked about fat lazy people that couldn't fast for a day or 40 days when she weighs about 200 pounds. Sorry! That's how I saw it, and I'm sure I'm not the only one.

Becky also preaches about the ploys that Satan can use to draw you away from God. The first being sin. I agree with Jeff that she should be countering the darkness with light, not with dark. She even writes, the wages of sin is death in a font that looks like blood is dripping. Another scare tactic. Let's scare it into 'em. Well, I guess it works. At one point she yells out three times "This means war!"...to which I responded "What about love!". (I was watching this by myself haha).

Now I realize that the people that made this movie had an agenda and that things were probably made out of context. However, the people said what they said. I just think it's sad.

I guess what gets me is that I went to youth camps and things like that. I don't remember it being that bad. I mean we certainly weren't required to all raise our hands and all speak in tongues at the same time. And, I won't even say that I discount my entire time at the camps. Sometimes I had great moments. I guess what I'm trying to say is that...I don't know.

I will say that I don't think that there's only one way to worship God. That you have to be loud and boisterous and jump up and down. It doesn't make me a bad person for worshipping him the way that I do.

A much needed break

This break has really been needed and, bonus, it has been awesome!

I have got to spend a LOT of time with my best friend that I've known since we were two or three. We went to Riverfield Country Day School together and we've been friends ever since. She's been off at OSU and now Langston while I've been here in Tulsa. I love her like she's my sister! I never feel judged when I'm around her and we've got each other's backs!

Well, we've watched many movies like The Duchess and Transformers. We've played pool a couple of times with the guys at Magoos! We've been to parties. We've had a bon fire. We went to the mall and got dresses and purses. And we just got back from Sharky's where I absolutely sucked at pool, but had a blast! I love having stuff to do with my bestie! I'm sad that she'll be going back to Stillwater on the seventh.

And besides my bestie, I have celebrated Christmas with the family and got wonderful presents! I went to see the Nutcracker and Cirque de Soleil which was AWESOME! And on Wednesday night I'll be ringing in the new year at the Ice Ball with my friend! I've also baked holiday cookies! And the best part of it all is that it's not over -- I still have until the 12th! YAY! :D

I finally feel like I'm living and that I'm not cooped up depressed in my house alone. And it feels great! I just hope that it lasts into this last semester.

Speaking of, I was telling my mom about a conversation that I had with a guy tonight at Sharky's. I was telling the guy, who is majoring in architectural engineering, that I wanted to do architecture but that it's too late. When I told my mom those exact words, she said "it's not too late. You could do that". What? Come again? I would've thought that she'd say something like "too expensive", "not a good line of work", "you should focus on your masters" or "you should get a job", not what she said. I don't know why I'm that surprised but I am. So...I guess I'm going to look into it. TU doesn't have an architecture program, I've looked.

O and my grade for negotiations is not yet posted, still. Grrrr I wanna know! It's eating me up! He should have those 150 pages read by now ;P

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Somehow I made an A in my finance class, the one where I had to make an 87% or higher! Now I'm waiting on my grade in orchestra (and I think I'll get an A) and my grade in Negotiations (iffy). I played viola at December commencement yesterday. Makes me realize how close it is for me, especially when I see some of my friends graduating! And...now I know I can wear an honor stole and not feel too singled out or look goofy! Good to know!

Yesterday my family also went to Eloda's for lunch - which turned into a day long event! But, it was very fun. Siaosi, eventually Carrie, and Bergen also came by so it wasn't just my family
and Eloda and Earl. We played liverpool rummy for hours, a tradition for us now at these types of family gatherings. It still makes me a little sad that there are other family members that are absent, but I know it would only prove to be very stressful or it would lead to a full on fight! No joke! It almost happened in 2005 before my grandpa passed away - I can only imagine what would happen today.

I saw Yes Man a few nights ago with my friend. It surprised me! I knew that Jim Carrey was funny and that I could expect humor, but I didn't think that I'd expect a good message too! The main point of the movie is to put yourself out there, because you are worth it. Stop turning down offers to hang out, go to dinner, go see a movie, etc. when your only reason is that you don't feel like you're enough, that you don't have anything to offer. Of course, you should say "no" sometimes for good reasons...but ultimately it's important to live life! It's too short! I think that it was just what I needed to hear!

Monday, December 15, 2008


My last final is tomorrow afternoon at 1pm. Good thing it's so late because I didn't really start studying until 8pm tonight. I went shopping with my best friend instead and ate dinner and relaxed. I think I look at this last final not only as a hurdle, because I have to make an 87% to keep an A in the course (and it may be on the verge of possible haha), but only one more step closer to graduating in May and starting a real life! YIKES! So, I guess I'm trying to put off the inevitable...isn't really working out haha.

I was looking at facebook earlier this evening, ok about 10 minutes ago. Some of my friends down there just had their formal for HIS (the sorority that I was apart of and initiated into in Texas during my time at TCU). They all look so beautiful. They all look so happy. Why did I ever leave TCU? I've wanted to stay in touch with them - and I know that they're not too busy to use facebook because they've been writing on each other's walls all the time - but I feel like they make no effort to keep in touch with me. And I have made the effort, I've sent messages, wrote on walls, chatted online on facebook chat. But, somehow it always ends up that they respond back once and that's it. Then they're finished with me and can cast me aside because I live in another state. It hurts. These two girls I thought would be my best friends forever. I thought that they would be bridesmaids in a future wedding (in fact we promised each other). I felt more alive and like myself when I was with them. We had things to do, we had places to be, we could talk to each other until late at night, we could bake cookies together, we could go dancing together...you name it. I guess what I really miss is having something to do with people that I love.

It all just makes me want to branch out and away from Tulsa, because maybe if I'm not living at home and being codependent on my mother and Haley while building up anger against my dad, I could finally make new friends and have my own life. At least that's how I felt while I was in Fort Worth...even if it was just a semester.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Newsweek recently wrote an article that "lays out the religious case for gay marriage". In her article, Lisa Miller quotes bible verses and passages to support her stance.

This is not the point of this particular note. What I actually found more interesting were the comments left on the website that discusses "religious reaction" to the article.

Here's a link: http://blog.newsweek.com/blogs/readback/archive/2008/12/08/a-religious-reaction-to-gay-marriage.aspx?GT1=43002

So here's a comment, the first one actually that I saw:

"The most disgusting and perverted mind is one that "knows" the truth. A Belief does not necessarily make a Truth.

Arguing with a religious person is as practical as beating your head with a brick. They've closed their minds to anything that conflicts with their belief system...Until something in their own judgemental lives forces them to see the real light."

Now I have not read the book Unchristian which looks at outsiders perspectives of Christianity (it's somewhere in my house), but I think that whoever wrote this pretty much sums up the viewpoint outlined in the book. Pretty sad.

Here's another:

"Her article was ridiculous - she picked and chose random verses to fit her point of view and didn't look at the Bible in its entirety. In Leviticus it flat out says that it is sinful for one man to lie w/ another. Plus, she cites the woman by the well story - and how that means Jesus befriended immoral people. What she leaves out is that after he talks with her he says "go and sin no more." She's right about love being the overarching theme but that doesn't mean we are supposed to live sinful lifestyles and act like it's okay. It just means that the sin of homosexuality is the same as any other sin.

But the problem wasn't her points so much is that Newsweek didn't allow the other side a rebuttal. Every one of her arguments can be easily taken down by someone with a more scholarly knowledge of the Bible...also, it's clear that she's not a Christian! If you're going to have some impassioned argument about Christianity's justification for gay marriage...then have an actual religious scholar write the debate. And she even points out that very few churches condone the practice...hmmm, I wonder why they have such a different interpretation of the Bible than she does!"

Why would she write this if she is firm in her beliefs other than to make an attempt to defend, what, God? As if God needs defending? And how does she know that she's not a "christian" which I guess to her would mean a "believer" or "God follower"? Shouldn't God be the only judge of that? (yes, ok guilty of doing this as well...hopefully more so in the past than in the present). What I also found interesting is her premise about the religious scholar. I kind of find it interesting to read someone elses's perspective on the bible for a change. See how someone else is reading it. Probably wrong isn't it...oops. Also, I don't think that this one article could harm christians more so that whan christians do themselves on a daily basis (stuff I'm guilty of as well, unfortunately).

I don't hate everything that she wrote - if homosexuality is a sin (staying away from declaring my views), then it is just like any other sin. So why do people make homosexuality such an issue! Why not make gossiping or lying an issue? They are people, people.

Only more reason for me to call myself a follower of Christ.

Just found this comment, one that I like because it's basically what I'm trying to say:

"I wouldn't say I am very religious, however I do go to church every Sunday. I go to church, not because I think that if i don't I'll go to Hell. I go to church every Sunday to remind myself to judge no one but myself. I go to church to remind myself to LOVE and ACCEPT everyone. I am not writing this to change anyone's mind, because it won't. I am just hoping that for a moment, people may read this, and let go of judgements, and know that we are all connected and are as one. No one of us is better than another. The underlying message in any holy scripture is to love oneself, so that you can truly love another. Be kind to others. Why in the world are people worried about others "sins" when they should be focused on their own. Seeing ways to better themselves, not better others. In my humble opinion, the Bible is much too old for anyone to interpret, and if you have ever taken any foreign language classes, you should know that not everything CAN be translated directly. One should focus on the main points, not try to find hidden meaning in every single letter of every single word. You'll only end up blinding yourself to the truth and beauty of the world.

Here is my main point: We are all human! We are all the same! LOVE is LOVE! And if you are Christian, I think that it is safe to say that you would agree with the statement that where ever Love is God is. So isn't it much better just to Love and accept than to Hate or judge?"

Monday, December 8, 2008

Last day of the fall semester!

I turned in my Diplomacy Journal today - all 150 pages of it (80 of which were written by me and my partner, Kim). Felt so good. It was bound nicely, thanks Kinkos! And it was definitely the largest journal there! I better get an A or I will be sitting in Wolfe's office, "negotiating".

Judge Wolfe asked us tonight in class what we had gained from negotiations. What I said was that it was necessary to prepare, identify your BATNA (or Best Alternative to a Negotiated Agreement), and to not bid against yourself. What I really wanted to say was that I learned how to swindle, how to lie to someone while looking them straight in the eye, how to bluff, how to cheat, how to backstab and how to lose relationships quickly. What great concepts.

What some people said about us tonight made me sad. Virtually everyone attacked us this past move. Why? What have we done? At least I have not tried to be someone's fake friend before mowing them over.

I do feel like I left with a tiny shred of dignity. We decided to help England, even though they made a move this last round to attack us. They were our one ally throughout the game, and we did not want to take cheap shots just to get points.

One person said that women are emotional. Another said that we (France) were deceptive and that we couldn't be trusted, despite the many support moves (and lies from other countries as well) we made and trying to seem empathetic (AND this is coming from Ivana, the lead negotiator for Russia, the person that had no guilt or ill feelings at taking advantage of virtually every player in the game - right). One person laughed when I said what I would do differently next time, thanks asshole (AJ).

I left feeling defeated and dissatisfied. I actually wanted to walk out when he said that we had one more move to play. Yes I made the game personal, because others also made it personal and emotional. It is sexist to think that only women are emotional, ok, helloooooo JB!!!!

In the end, I kept my face still, without emotion. But, I couldn't hide my red cheeks from my blood pressure rising. I didn't make any wise cracks, no degradations, and I didn't make low ball comments like some of the other players in class.

I end the game with 5 supply centers...the losing lot.

But enough! The class is over! No more of this wretched God-awful game! And...with it no more friendly relationships with some members of teams, unfortunately.

I'm watching an orchestra play on Ovation! They are absolutely fantastic and amazing. Thank goodness I do not have class tomorrow! I can sleep in a little - say til 9am.

I've almost completed my Christmas shopping! I've got stocking stuffers for the fam. I've gotten Haley's gift. I'm not buying a gift for my dad. But, I've still got to get my mom a gift. And I think I know what to get her too!

If this Diplomacy game has taught me anything useful, it is that people can make decisions and actions that I'll never truly know the intent of. So, I quickly judge that to mean one thing, while they may have another motive, possibly a good one, in mind. I should be willing to trust, willing, unless someone proves me wrong. I don't think I have a high trust propensity. Actually, very low probably.

Only two tests, a presentation and paper, a jury, a rehearsal and a performance left and then the semester will be OVER! Yay! And then I will be one semester away from graduating! Scary!

Since I stayed up until 2am last night working on my journal, I bid adieu and goodnight. Sleep tight.