Sunday, December 30, 2007

Too Many Things...

Well, it's almost 2008. I know people always ask this, but what is it about changing the calendar year that holds such a magical hope about it? Do I really believe that I could actually start over... is that truly possible? Living alone in the world without God - no. Just take a stroll down the "self-help" aisle of your local Barnes & Noble. God's the only one who can bring the "magic" of the New Year to us any day of the year. At any moment in time, I can ask God to make me a new person. I can, and I have. So now that I am a new creation, the old being gone, how am I going to live my life? Will I take this amazing gift and toss it in the pile of token Christmas favors or will I hold it dear and cherish it before my eyes each morning, focusing on the prize for which Christ has called me heavenward?

Too many things... I must stop "trying" to live. I'm trying to hard. I have too many things going on in my life and most of them aren't even real. It's going to be incredibly hard for me, but I am going to seriously scale back (notice I can't quite let go yet) on network sites and blogs from now on, not just in this new year. I have let them take over my every spare moment so that I have not made time for Christ, let alone real relationships with real people. So look for me in the new year - in the flesh. I'll be more focused, more peaceful, more gentle, more musical, and hopefully, more real.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

I'm a Fool but...

I want to be a fool for God, and laugh and cry and surrender all. I want to truly trust and humbly serve, come to Him broken and live life renewed.

I thought to myself, "you're a fool" this morning as I used a Starbucks card to get coffee and some holiday bread. I was inconsiderate to the barrista when I said, "the side of the cup is all wet," when he gave me my cup. I said, "do you have a napkin back there?" but I never asked him to please wipe it off for me... I expected it. I'm so sorry for being rude. It didn't hit me until I was standing on the corner waiting for the light to change... I looked down at my brown Doc Martins that terribly clash with my black outfit and thought, "you look like a fool." I felt the wetness of my freshly cleaned Eggnog Latte and remembered how I had acted. How could I make up for it? I had no time to go in and apologize; I had to get to work. I could go back later today or tomorrow but who knows if he will be there - or if he'd remember. But that's not the point. So who knows what I'm going to do. This is the dilemma of living...

Today's Word

Joy in His Presence

Today's Scripture

“You have made known to me the path of life; You will fill me with joy in Your presence, with eternal pleasures at Your right hand” (Psalm 16:11).

Today's Word from Joel and Victoria

Do you need more joy in your life today? God promises that joy is found in His presence, and if you’ve accepted Jesus as your Lord and Savior, then His presence lives inside of you! That joy manifests when you focus your mind and heart on the Father and begin to praise Him for what He’s done in your life. The Bible says that He inhabits the praises of His people. When you begin to praise and thank Him, you are in His presence where there is fullness of joy. It doesn’t matter where you are or what’s going on around you, you can access the joy that’s inside of you at anytime, day or night. And know this: God wants you to experience His supernatural joy and peace at all times. That’s why He chose to live inside of you and give you an endless supply. Don’t waste another minute feeling overburdened and discouraged. Let the joy of the Lord be your strength, and you will move forward in victory on the path of life He’s prepared for you!

A Prayer for Today

Father in heaven, thank You for an endless supply of joy. Today, I choose to cast my cares on You and give You the praise, glory, and honor You deserve. Let joy flow through me today so that I can be a witness of Your goodness to those around me. In Jesus’ Name. Amen.

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Crazy Weekend, but Par for My Life

What a weird weekend. It started "normal" enough. I got off of work on Friday and went to dinner at Celebrate Recovery, talked about my problems, went to Steve's and waited for him to get off work. We watched t.v. and munched on snacks. Then I went "home" to my folks' where I live. (This is all "normal" for me so far even though it's not "normal" to spend Friday nights at church talking about hurts, habits, and hang-ups, it's not "normal" to have to visit my husband in his studio apartment and it's not "normal" for me, after almost 12 years of marriage, to live with my parents without my husband...) So it was then that things got weird. (Although, upon later reviewing of this... even the next part is not out of the ordinary...) My dad was taking my mom to the ER at 11:30pm Friday night. She was having pain in her side and trouble breathing. I stayed at home alone and was awake until 2:10 doing laundry, playing my guitar, writing music, reading, listening to music, waiting for a phone call. I fell asleep holding my cell phone. At 3:42am I woke up to the house phone ringing. It rang a million times and I thought it was a dream... (you know that feeling). When I finally woke up and ran to get it, my cell phone started ringing back in my room. It was my dad saying that they had admitted my mom to the hospital because the CAT scan showed blood clots on her right lung. She is recovering from rotator cuff surgery and it's most likely from that. So, o.k. that's one thing. Then at 8am my brother Joe calls me and says, "we're having the baby!" So it's their first and mom and dad can't be there, so I drive to Stanford while mom's at Sequoia hospital... and though I never actually went "back and forth" it felt like it. Top it all off with a choir Christmas party and the day was beyond crammed full of excitement.
Sunday: all day at church save 3 hours for lunch. Mini gig at La Tartine until 9:45pm. Now I'm home and thoroughly exhausted but thankful for friends and prayers and music and Christmas.

I wrote most of this poem when it was raining really cool on the way to work. I wish I took this photo...

Thurs. Dec 6, 2007
I can't seem to write a song about the rain
feels too close, feels too far
Speckled sidewalk
fresh wet asphalt
sweet smell of dusty earth drops bouncing up
Happy patter, grey cloud chatter
Hear the tears of a happy God

Impossible rain!
why is it impossible?
you decide
Eucalyptus to the creekside

silent leaves hiding under tunnels of yellow green
Hovering mist breaks the silent walk
with whispers through the trees
branches silhouette on dark white sky

Let me hide under your raindrops,
on soggy olive trodden grass land
Weeping for the sunshine
Weeping for the sun
Hiding, running from the light

I love the shelter of the rain

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Wine and Cheese

No matter how hard we try to fight the tiny voice inside, sometimes God just wins. My story begins at work on Friday as I took my wallet out of my purse and placed it on my desk so that I could go pay for my insurance (which I never did, oops...). As the day went on, and work piled up, I buried my wallet and forgot it was there. Hungry beyond the point of remembering that I had no money in my purse, I snatched it up and headed off to Whole Foods in downtown Palo Alto. Every now and then I treat myself to an apple and a small chunk of some exotic cheese, perhaps a fruit juice of some sort. I laugh now as I remember my reply to the homeless lady that said "excuse me ma'am, can you help?" As I hurried in the front of the store, I said "sorry I can't right now." Thinking that all I had was my ATM card, it still would have been true.
So, I walked around leisurely, tasting samples that were out, wandering aimlessly, trying to decide what to get for lunch. For some reason, I noticed a display of wine that was on sale, and an employee started telling me about a pomegranate wine that I found interesting. I looked all around the displays and was taken over by a dream, an image of a gathering of friends, a dimly lit room, laughter, and an Australian wine called the Love Grass. Never tried it before, but the story on the label was interesting.
I'm a sucker for a good story, so when I heard from the guy at the cheese display that the 200 goats that provide the milk for the only organic goat cheese in Northern California graze on headlands that overlook the ocean, I grabbed a small package to go with the wine. I'm sure it would have been delicious. It was only when I got to the checkout stand that I realized I had no money with me. Only slightly embarrassed, I left to make my way back to work. I was actually relieved. I don't know what came over me that would make me buy things for which I had no immediate plans. Nor did I really have the money. Was it really me? Do I buy wine and cheese? Yes. Do I take it to friends' houses? Yes. But this was different. There was something about it that made me feel like I was better or more important because I was going to buy this even though I didn't need it. I know that I don't have the means right now to live the way I want and buy the things I want, but I keep trying and pretending things are normal or o.k.

The other good thing about not spending $25 that day on something I didn't need, was that I "needed" $25 for the amazing concert I went to that night in SF. I got the $25 out of my vending machine at work that afternoon. I also spent $10 on parking and today I got a rebate check for $10 in the mail from something I sent in a long time ago!

Moral of the story, listen to the tiny voice. It's God. Especially if the tiny voice is telling you to do something you don't want to do... it's probably God. Listen up and obey right away.

Sunday, November 25, 2007


I want everything I see to be a song
I want every song I sing to be the one
That draws you further down, closer now

The wind strips all the trees with violence and rage
The streets are filled with Fall, it blows away and fills again
I want everything I see to be a song

It's raining leaves today...

I want everything I see to be a song
I want every song I sing to be the one
That draws you further down, closer now

I sat and saw the music blend like coffee and good cream
The air is filled with friends, it blows away and fills again
I want everything I see to be a song

It's raining leaves today...

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

My Bridge Article Nov. 2007 (unabridged, ha ha)

Hi, my name is Jen. I am a child of God, and I serve at PCC in the music department. I returned to PCC last year and became a substitute worship leader for the 12-step program called Celebrate Recovery. Now I am a member of the Sunday @ 6 band, playing guitar and singing background or lead vocals. I also coordinate the schedule for worship leaders that volunteer at Celebrate Recovery.
Today, my life has been impacted so much by worship, it revolves around it! Worshiping God has been a part of my life for as long as I can remember. I was always singing in this kid's choir or that youth band or learning to lead and play guitar at Campus Club here at PCC. I was the shy girl who sat alone by the door for three years in high school. Afraid to get up front yet longing to learn all the songs, I stayed afterwards to get copies of the music. (I still have them!) I would tape record the music at youth group and practice my guitar at home. I practiced everyday. At times I thought I was just learning the songs and practicing guitar, but really I was worshiping God everyday by singing to Him and meaning and loving the words and scripture I was imprinting on my mind. "Bless Yahweh, oh bless Him, let all that is within me sing praise to His glory and bless His holy name; for He is kind and merciful to all who call upon His name. Oh praise Him for all of His love." By my senior year, I was up front, guitar in hand, fear gone, and well on my way toward leading entire church services, youth groups, and U.S. Army recruits to God in praise.

I love the joy that comes from bringing people to God’s window as He listens to the laughter and praise from His children. I love being available and ready to jump in at a moment’s notice. I may not think I’m able to talk to someone on the street about God or get up in front of a group and give a talk, but if you ask me to lead a few songs, God has blessed me with the courage. And the fact that you can sing a song no matter where you are makes your voice the ultimate musical instrument: created by God, in His own image, a reflection of His voice, and absolutely portable!

Sing to him a new song; play skillfully, and shout for joy.
Psalm 33:3

Monday, October 29, 2007

One More Blog, So Nice and Clean

This is my new home for thoughts and things. If it's anywhere, it will be here. (Like that makes sense...)

O.k. so this happened at Sunday @ 6, outside during the sermon:
Jesus told me at the cross, "I want to be the only man you turn to and run to in your life." Then this old song came back to me in a rush and I ran inside and wrote it down to share with the hundreds of people at church...
"I'll Obey" and serve You, I'll obey because I love You, I'll obey, my life is in Your hands. For it's the way to prove my love when the feelings go away, and if it costs me everything, I'll obey.

That was last night, this started today at work...

So Syncopated

All I wanna do is sing all day, a new song, {rest} loud song, sing a love song, never stop
All I wanna do is just play all day, a new song, play a loud song, {rest} a quiet love song

All I wanna do is sing all day, a new song, {rest} loud song, sing a love song, and never stop
All I wanna do is just play all day, a new song, play a loud song, {rest} a (love) song I could

sing…..(Sing for joy to God our strength)
And play…..(play skillfully and shout for joy)
For You……(You are my God, You are my God)
all day…..(day after day I will sing praise)
I can sing….. [repeat]

If its' true Lord I will sing, even at work I write this song
This song is true Lord I will sing, even at work I sing this song...

About Me

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Stockton, CA, United States
Free to run.