I'm sure you haven't been wondering, but I'll tell you anyway:
Between this, this, this, this (singles), and this, I feel like I'm going to be a fat Christian conference hopper. I'm going to just thank Jesus that I live in the Dallas-Fort Worth area, that I work for a non-profit with amazing connections, that I go to an amazing church who gives amazing discounts for weekends with stellar line-ups. But seriously, seriously? The Groaning Cosmos is the one I'm the most excited about. They'll be teaching through the book of Romans and it will be packed full of the gospel. I love that. I promise I won't get fat on conferences. I don't really like conferences. I'm just grateful is all.
Almost every day for the past few weeks, my two roommates and I have found ourselves sprawled out around the living room, on someone's bed, perched on counters and chairs, wherever really, just together. We've laugh hard, sometimes we've cried, we've been astounded by how good God is and how He shows that goodness to us, we've mourned, we've counseled, we've helped, we've encouraged. Sometimes I just marvel, I sit and listen to them when they think I'm not (like right now for instance), and I just marvel at how blessed I am.
One of said roommates and I have been doing a (mostly) raw food cleanse for the past few weeks. It's been good. I've been eating mostly vegetarian for the past few years (for various reasons, ie. money, health, bleeding heart), but eating an almost entirely raw food diet is quite the experience. But I love green smoothies. I love them! Many of you know that about seven years ago I got pretty sick and since then have had food issues (let's just say that I pretty much constantly have an upset stomach). I also have had the worst allergies down here that I've had in my life. Well, just a few weeks in and I have not had ONE sinus headache and for the most part my stomach has been super agreeable. We'll see how this works long-term!
Our green smoothies aren't the only thing green around here. If grass can be describes as mammoth-sized, let's just say ours is. It's hard living in a house you don't own and not really feeling a total sense of ownership over the lawn, especially when lawn care runs around $40 a week. None of us want to put that sort of monetary investment in this rough Texan...grass? weeds? viney-carpet? I don't know what one calls the stuff that covers a lot of the lawns here in Texas, but it sure isn't the pretty soft grass I envision when I think of summer. Tomorrow though, the other roommate is going to pick up a lawnmower that someone gave to us! Cool eh? No more mammoth grass.
Unfortunately the weeds that grow up around my heart are not so quickly dealt with. For the past four months I've been taking a class at my church called Steps. All I knew about Steps before I signed up was that 1. It was hard 2. It was good. I'm not one to shy from hard and I like good things, so I signed up. Let's just say that the past four months have been very telling to me. Last week I sat in Starbucks with a friend and shared some hard things about my fear and pride, things I knew were issues for me, but I'd pushed down, ignored, for a long time. The whole point of this course is to bring us to a deeper understanding of the gospel's finished work in us. That's it. Finished work. Finished. I have a hard time finishing anything. And so it's been such an amazing discovery for me to realize that I don't need to finish it, it's already been done for me. I love that.
I've been catching myself falling back into a pattern of works recently. I mess up, I shudder, I hide, I make excuses, I lose my joy, and I fear. God feels far from me and I feel even further from Him. The thing about grace is that some of us believe that it's too good and so we keep the law in front of us, to keep us in check. But some of us think we're too bad, and so we dismiss it entirely. The truth is that it IS too good and that we ARE too bad. And I love that. Because it doesn't make sense. I keep coming back to it. It surpasses my understanding and that's what makes it amazing.
Oh, and I bought a bike.