Sunday, September 30, 2012

I'm Wearing Glittery Red Shoes (September 29, 2006)

Friday, September 29, 2006

I'm wearing glittery red shoes.

Sometimes I find myself on the streets of Madrid, clicking my heels together, saying, "There's no place like home; there's no place like home." There's nothing like being in that place where you feel like playdough squished between a preschoolers hand--warm, safe, fitting between the cracks and gaps, perfect in each little crevice. It's a great gift to be able to explore new corners of the world and to meet new, exciting, vibrant people full of character and interest. But something about that being known and metaphorically kicking back on the couch in silence, surrounded by the people you love, and the people that love you--it's beautiful. And really, this is just a minuscule feeling compared to that feeling of being known and loved by God. I have this part in Donald Miller's book, Searching for God Knows What, underlined --it's like two whole pages. I can't really share all of it, cuz I wanna make sure that we support the starving authors out there and buy a copy for ourselves, and not copy the whole thing on xanga, but here is just a clip, that makes me realize how much God really loves me, and how really He is the ultimate playdough holder.

"The circus, and I am talking about life now, really sucks. It feels like we all have these little acts, these stupid things we do that we all hang our hats on. The Fall has made monkeys of us, for crying out loud. . . . In this sense, as harsh as some of Jesus' words are, they are also beautiful and comforting. No more worrying about what an audience thinks, no more trying to elbow our way to the top. We have Him instead, a God who redeems our identity for us, giving us His righteousness. . . . Imagine how much a man's life would be changed if he trusted that he was loved by God? He could interact with the poor and not show partiality, he could love his wife easily and not expect her to redeem him, he would be slow to anger because redemption was no longer at stake, he could be wise with his money because money no longer represented points, he could give up on formulaic religion, knowing that checking stuff off a spiritual to-do list was a worthless pursuit, he would have confidence and the ability to laugh at himself, and he could love people without expecting anything in return. It would be quite beautiful, really."

Quite beautiful, indeed.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

I'm Wearing Glittery Red Shoes (September 29, 2006)

Friday, September 29, 2006

I'm wearing glittery red shoes.

Sometimes I find myself on the streets of Madrid, clicking my heels together, saying, "There's no place like home; there's no place like home." There's nothing like being in that place where you feel like playdough squished between a preschoolers hand--warm, safe, fitting between the cracks and gaps, perfect in each little crevice. It's a great gift to be able to explore new corners of the world and to meet new, exciting, vibrant people full of character and interest. But something about that being known and metaphorically kicking back on the couch in silence, surrounded by the people you love, and the people that love you--it's beautiful. And really, this is just a minuscule feeling compared to that feeling of being known and loved by God. I have this part in Donald Miller's book, Searching for God Knows What , underlined --it's like two whole pages (sorry Christy, it's in purple pen: I couldn't find a pencil). I can't really share all of it, cuz I wanna make sure that we support the starving authors out there and buy a copy for ourselves, and not copy the whole thing on xanga, but here is just a clip, that makes me realize how much God really loves me, and how really He is the ultimate playdough holder.

"The circus, and I am talking about life now, really sucks. It feels like we all have these little acts, these stupid things we do that we all hang our hats on. The Fall has made monkeys of us, for crying out loud. . . . In this sense, as harsh as some of Jesus' words are, they are also beautiful and comforting. No more worrying about what an audience thinks, no more trying to elbow our way to the top. We have Him instead, a God who redeems our identity for us, giving us His righteousness. . . . Imagine how much a man's life would be changed if he trusted that he was loved by God? He could interact with the poor and not show partiality, he could love his wife easily and not expect her to redeem him, he would be slow to anger because redemption was no longer at stake, he could be wise with his money because money no longer represented points, he could give up on formulaic religion, knowing that checking stuff off a spiritual to-do list was a worthless pursuit, he would have confidence and the ability to laugh at himself, and he could love people without expecting anything in return. It would be quite beautiful, really."

Quite beautiful, indeed.



Here's to being beautiful . . . .

Thursday, September 20, 2012

El metro y el bus (September 21, 2006)

Six years ago this fall I transplanted myself to the city of Madrid to study abroad for the semester.  I have been re-posting some of my old blog entries from then.  Here is one from September 21, 2006 after my first week of classes.  Thinking back to those first few weeks in Madrid, I remember my brain hurting so much from having to think all the time--learning new words, constantly translating things in my head, trying to express myself in a foreign tongue (and usually failing), adjusting to a new culture, a new time schedule.  Everything there felt so different from home . . . but apparently this day had a bright spot of feeling more comfortable and adjusted. 

Thursday, September 21, 2006

El Metro y el bus

You know, when you're able to navigate your way through a big city, there's this feeling that just warms up your insides. Yesterday was an "I miss home" day, but today--that's a different story. Actually, it started yesterday afternoon. I was just really proud of myself, cuz I took the metro and I really felt comfortable, like I knew what I was doing. Then today, I actually took some of the buses around UCM (the campus of Madrid's university) today and found my way around. I had to go to the campus bookstore to buy a book for my Spanish Theatre class. The book wasn't there, but I had a fun adventure seeing the campus on my own. Like, there were Spanish students studying, I talked to what I think was a professor (I was asking him for directions, and he chatted a bit), I saw some classes in session, I just got to see better the life of a Spanish student at UCM (Universidad Complutense Madrid). On the bus home, I met a guy from Germany who's going to be studying in France this semester. He was asking me directions in Spanish, but I couldn't answer him, so we spoke in English. Can you imagine? Four languages!! Incredible. I actually got stopped three times for directions today! It makes me feel like, I look like I know what I'm doing which is good, but then I open my mouth and they know I have no idea. But at least I won't be mistaken for a lost tourist that's an easy pick-pocket job. Anyways, just thought I'd share my excitement of becoming accustomed to living in this city; it's a good feeling. And my first week of classes is out of the way. Yess. One down, lots to go. Hasta . . .

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

While We're Reminiscing...

My usual pastry of choice (scone) and a
chocolate napolitana (my pastry of choice while
in Spain!)
My husband likes to surprise me with pastries every now-and-then for me to have with my morning cup of joe.  Yesterday he unknowingly bought me a piece of nostalgia to eat--a napolitana.  (His timing could not have been more perfect, as yesterday morning I had just resurrected my old blog from my semester in Spain.)  You see, when I lived abroad in Madrid and walked to classes each morning, I always passed by a panadería run by a friendly Guatemalan woman.  If you know me, you know I cannot resist any item from the genus of pastries; therefore, one important stop in my mornings abroad--somewhere after getting dressed and before buying a café con leche in the IES student cafe--was buying a napolitana from my local panadería.  As much as I missed home while studying in Madrid, I would not mind transporting myself there again just to take another stroll through my Moncloa neighborhood. 

Check back in a few days from now to read another entry from six years ago.  And while you wait, go buy an espresso maker (if you do not own one already), grab a chocolate napolitana from Panera (unless you know of a better place to find one), follow the café con leche instructions from the link above, and sample a small taste of Spain with me.