But now in Christ Jesus you who once were far off have been brought near by the blood of Christ. For he himself is our peace, who has made us both one and has broken down in his flesh the dividing wall of hostility... Eph. 2:13-14

Wednesday, May 16

Today is a good day.

I know that I should be doing something else right now, but I’m so happy that I have to jot down something right now, and my laptop is open, so I figure typing would be faster than writing it down by hand.

GOD IS SO GOOD! Here I sit on my bed, listening to worship songs and hearing the wind blow through the trees outside. This is an extension of my Bible study. This is how I should feel always... filled with Him.
So often I ignore Him and go on with my life without Him, but it’s impossible. I’m miserable. And then I want to come back, but I know it will hurt, so I keep putting it off and putting it off and I get farther and farther away from Him. Then His Word doesn’t matter, prayer doesn’t matter, true joy (and not passing happiness) doesn’t exist. I’m disrespectful to my parents, I’m lazy and won’t do my work, I’m cruel to friends and family (if not in action then in thought - which will lead into action). And I’m miserable.

And then I know that there is no other way to get my life back together than to repent. It’s like having a broken bone heal wrong - I have to be broken again so that I can grow straight.

And sometimes I can convince myself that everything has been put back in order and everything should be good again... but it’s not.

And then I truly repent. It hurts, yes, but then I know that everything has been forgiven and taken care of, and life is so much more sweet.

So here I am this morning, so thankful to be His child - and so unworthy.

Everything is so beautiful outside, the birds are cheeping, the wind is blowing, the sun is shining through thick, leafy branches and making blotches of shade on the brown/green ground than run all over as the wind blows. This is raw nature; no picture can capture the life in this. This is what God created, not the death, but the life. When you’re inside everything is dead. Dead walls. Dead chair. Dead floor. Dead electronics. But outside everything is alive.

God has given us this gift, and right now I feel like He gave it to me. I love His Creation because He made it. And my heart bleeds for those who cannot know this joy.

Oh God, Thank YOU!!! May Your Name be praised in all the earth!

Monday, May 7

My scattered, horror-stricken thoughts typed up, but without much rhyme or reason.

This actually isn't the big thing that I was going to write about (and I will get to it eventually). I just really feel like I should. Okay. Here we go.

I need to talk about violence, like, "fake" violence such as movies. Well, let's just start with movies. Okay, how many kids 10 or under do you know that watch movies today that you would NEVER be able to watch? I just went to see Spiderman 3 last night. It's easier to watch than 2 (or at least I thought so) simply because there isn't a scene like the hospital scene in 2. Nothing like that. Just plain violent, not my-nightmares-go-something-like-this stuff. But it was still violent. People are blown up, chopped up and run into walls at a rate that makes you wonder if the writers forgot there was such a thing as a concussion. AND CHILDREN WATCH THIS. Okay, I realize that some boys take a while to hit a growth spurt and guys that are fifteen can look like they're eleven, but they don't look like they're nine. Or if you want to go back to a different violent movie (Star Wars Episode III) they don't look like the're... oh,... I'd say about six. Yeah. Just because they can watch the old Star Wars doesn't mean anything for the darker movies of today. Just because it's based on a comic book doesn't mean it's for kids.

But do you want to know what scares me in all of this?

These kids, you know, the ones way younger than me, THEY'RE LESS AFFECTED THAN I AM BY THE VIOLENCE.

Now, you must understand that I was born with one of those blessing/curse things that you find in movies. Mine is an extremely vivid imagination. So violence affects me; like, if someone is getting stabbed, I can get pretty close to knowing how they feel, so I feel really bad for them. And some things just affect me. For instance, my parents took me to Chicago for my birthday and we went to Medieval Times (which was SO much fun). At Medieval Times they have a torture chamber museum thing, and so I wanted to go. And so we went. My whole family. Even my little brother and sister. And I saw things... and I get sick at the thought of it. AND MY SIBLINGS SAW IT!... AND MY BROTHER WASN'T AFFECTED AT ALL! After I rushed through it all I wanted was to keep him from seeing it. To keep him from seeing the horror that my mind was giving me. And I couldn't.

Well, I mixed up subjects there, but now you know my side of watching violence - I'm more affected.

The rest of the world? They aren't affected.

Because it's common.

Okay, I'll talk about Video Games. Specifically, I'll pick on Marvel: Ultimate Alliance (my siblings and I just bought it). This game consists of killing bad guys. At first they're robots, so it's cool. But then they're human. And your powers get scarier, so you're zapping the brains out of one or grabbing them with your web and using them as a weapon. Now I don't think about it while I'm playing, so we just keep going on and on and on. And then my brother starts talking. And I realize that the violence has had its effect. He loves it.

When a kid says something like "There's only a little bit of blood" or even "There's no blood" you've got trouble. They ascociate violence with blood. Just to let you know, something can be VERY violent and have no blood at all. So what is violence, anyway?

Violence |ˈvī(ə)ləns| noun behavior involving physical force intended to hurt, damage, or kill someone or something.

Yeah, I'll agree with that definition.

You can't just say that something is "fake". The point of a movie is to seem as real as possible, so while you're watching it (especially if you're young) that movie isn't fake. When war is going on in your backyard, you don't want your children to see. You don't want your children to start shooting at people. You don't want them beating people up. So why do you give them these roll models?

When you're a kid (or at least I was like this), you want to be tough, you want to be able to handle the violence. Then you see it, you can't handle it, you flip. Then you laugh at yourself, you talk yourself into believing that it's not that bad. Then you go back and watch it again. And it's not that bad.

Things need to be "that bad". Violence is shocking because it's wrong. Death is shocking because it's wrong. No one should be able to see someone die by being horribly mutilated and not be affected (I understand that this is sometimes nessesary for people in medical professions and people who fight in wars - I am not trying to say that they are wrong, actually they should be admired because they can handle it).

People are like the Romans with their gladiators. Nothing ever changes.

But please don't let your children see too much violence. Just because they CAN handle it doesn't mean they SHOULD.

Sorry. I'd love to say more. I'm just too sad.