Thursday, January 31, 2013

Any Other Way - Tenth Avenue North

It's not enough
it's not enough
just to say that we're okay.
I need your hurt
I need your pain;

I do this too often. I post something and say one or all of the following:


2. This is absolutely beautiful.

3. This is amazing. LOVE IT WITH ME!!!!

So I am trying to avoid ALL of them and be unique this time, because I owe this blog a decent post. It's been too long. Here goes:

A while ago, I saw the refrain to this song written on a girl's avatar on an online Catholic girls forum I'm part of. I remember she was going through an EXTREMELY rough time in her life, and she took a lot of comfort from this song. 

Just this week, I was thinking about those words, I need your hurt, I need your pain, its not love any other way. I have only recently really started to LOVE other people, and that line resonated in my heart. I, too, have been going through a rough time, because I feel lost and alone and I just don't know where God is taking me anymore. 

So I looked up the song using the magical tool that is Google, and gave it a listen. I was blown away by how accurate the lyrics are. We hear a billion songs a day about what love is and what it looks like, and this was a completely new and 100% TRUE message. 

I'm at a place where I can see very clearly how blessed I am, and how beautiful my life is. Still, my heart is aching for things that aren't realized yet, and I feel broken. And I have this terrible tendency to keep that from God. I just weather the storm and thank God when it's over, but I don't GIVE it to Him. 

This song has helped me realize that if I really want to let God love me, I need to give Him my hurt and my pain. It's not love any other way.

Friday, January 25, 2013

If you want to, you can.

At the beginning of the school year last fall, I found this quote in my theology book. It spoke directly to my heart, and it still does. 

"In your life, there are two things that do not fit together: your head and your heart.

Your intelligence — enlightened by faith — shows you the way clearly. It can also point out the difference between following that way heroically or stupidly. Above all, it places before you the divine greatness and beauty of the undertakings the Trinity leaves in our hands.

Your feelings, on the other hand, become attached to everything you despise, even while you consider it despicable. It seems as if a thousand trifles were awaiting the least opportunity, and as soon as your poor will is weakened, through physical tiredness or lack of supernatural outlook, those little things pile up and excite your imagination, until they form a mountain that oppresses and discourages you. Things such as the rough edges of your work, your resistance to obedience; the lack of proper means; the will-o’-the-wisp attractions of an easy life; greater or smaller repugnant temptations; bouts of over-sentimentality; tiredness; the bitter taste of spiritual mediocrity…
And sometimes also fear; fear because you know God wants you to be a saint, and you are not a saint.

Allow me to talk to you bluntly. You have more than enough “reasons” to turn back, and you lack the resolution to correspond to the grace that He grants you, since He has called you to be another Christ — ipse Christus! — Christ himself. You have forgotten the Lord’s admonition to the Apostle: “My grace is enough for you!”, which is confirmation that, if you want to, you can."

— Saint Josemaría Escrivá , Furrow, 166

Also! Today, hundreds of thousands of people were in Washington D. C. for the March for Life to show the world they will not sit by while abortion takes place in our country. I pray that Saint Josemaría Escrivá would intercede for the world at the throne of Heaven, that we may live to see the end of legalized abortion and crimes against the dignity of human life.

Through the Holy Name of Jesus and the Immaculate Heart of Mary, I pray,


Tuesday, January 22, 2013

My wonderful weekend

This past weekend I interviewed with NET Ministries, because I feel that God is calling me to serve His Kingdom by ministering to youth who are in need of His love.

This weekend was absolutely fantastic. There were moments of great pain where the Devil tried to steal my peace in God's plan for me, but my Blessed Mother came to my rescue and her prayers helped me to trust again. I had so much fun, I grew closer to Christ, and I made some unbelievably awesome friends who I hope to keep for years, no matter who gets accepted this year.

One of my new friends, a magnificent young lady named Melina, I have actually been able to keep in touch with right away via e-mail, and I learned that she is a singer-songwriter slowly trying to work her way into the Christian music industry. Her videos are fantastic, and I wanted to share with all of you the one video that is my favorite so far. Please watch her videos and like them if you have a Youtube account (I do not)! She's trying to get 500 views this year, and she has a really beautiful voice :)

Melina is such a beautiful witness to God's unfailing love. I am honored to call her my friend. We're really different; she's confident and accomplished, I'm kind of goofy and procrastinating. But we share a common desire for Christ and His will above anything else. No one can take our Lord from us, no matter how we suffer or struggle in this life.

Please keep Melina, myself, and about 55 other young men and women who applied for NET this past weekend. We all desire to serve God in this way, and it is a journey that will take faith and strength, accepted or not.

In other news, my younger sister got back from Rome the Friday I was gone at my NET interview, and she bought me a gorgeous scarf and a big pile of Italian candy (I LOVE YOU MEG!!). I am starting my second semester of senior year. And that's about it!

God bless, and take care!

Saturday, January 12, 2013

Another NaNo Excerpt

This one is a little different. My human character accidentally finds out that the two guys she's been traveling Europe with are really an elf and a leprechaun when a somewhat mad professor corners them in Germany. It's a kind of funny and lighthearted scene, but, unfortunately, this is where I've gotten stuck. Enjoy!

Barbara was reading the pamphlet. “Oh my gosh. Do you really have an extra toe?”
Padraig blinked. He opened his mouth, glanced at Professor Bunk, and replied, “No, but I believe my sister does,”
“So that’s an uncommon trait?” the professor said, looking surprised.
“Very,” Padraig replied.
“Well…I heard once that one in every hundred human babies is born with an extra digit,” Barbara murmured. “If that makes you feel better,”
“Oh, don’t worry about me, I’m fine,” Padraig said.
“It also says that you can… pop?” Barbara said, raising her eyebrows.
“Nope. That would also be my sister,” Padraig said. “I’ve never… erm… popped, in my life,”
“Go to the part about wishes!” Professor Bunk cried, practically crawling across the table in excitement. “Read! Read! That’s what makes Padraig special!”
Barbara’s eyes flitted back and forth as she searched for the portion the professor was talking about, and then she found it and kept reading. Her lips parted a little bit. Her eyes grew wider and wider. Finally, she frowned, and sat back, blinking. 
Padraig and Stian simultaneously took her hands, gazing at her worriedly.
Barbara slowly turned to Padraig, still blinking more rapidly than usual. “What?” she said.
David Bunk looked utterly delighted. “Wondrous, isn’t it?”
“Wait—what all did you write about me?” Padraig asked, snatching the pamphlet away from Barbara.
He read it quickly: Certain very few leprechauns have the ability to create gold. This in itself is remarkable, but what is more remarkable still is that even fewer leprechauns are sometimes born with the ability to make magic gold. This gold, when given to another, contains a small amount of magic specifically cast to grant one possible wish to the recipient. This gold does not grant a wish to leprechauns, and it is unknown if there are any other creatures who are immune to the wish magic. This magical gift is extremely rare; less than a .0001% of leprechauns, even in local legend, have possessed. It is believed that such a powerful gift has strange physical side effects; particularly that when a leprechaun should grant a wish, he should flee from the person he has granted the wish to for an indeterminate amount of time. Other side effects known to have occurred are lightheadedness, nausea, and trifling headaches.
“Hm. Surprisingly accurate, considering your stupid illustrations,” Padraig said encouragingly to the professor. 
“No, wait!” Barbara interrupted. “Wait!” She slammed her hands down on the table, rattling the china and causing half a slice of kugelkopf to bounce onto the floor.
“Stop, just stop!” she insisted. She turned and glared at Padraig. Padraig leaned away from her in terror as the full fury of a woman scorned washed over him. She just glared at him for about two minutes. “Well?” she said.
Padraig sighed heavily, and leaned back towards her. “Okay. Here you go. You want proof, Barbara Peplum? Here you go.” He showed her his right hand, than balled it into a fist. He opened his hand slowly to reveal a small, shiny gold coin that had the words DHÉANAMH MIAN printed on it.
Barbara stared down at it in shock for a moment, and looked up at Padraig’s face. “So it’s true. It’s true. You’re… you’re a leprechaun. You’re for real,”

Thursday, January 10, 2013

History Qtr 2 Week 5 Paper


Alright. I don't usually post a lot of my school papers on here, and ESPECIALLY not the history papers. But I have been working on this sucker for over a week. I could absolutely not come up with a single thing to say about my topic. I even wrote the NEXT assigned paper before this one. As such, I am extremely proud of it now that it is finished, and I just thought I'd share it with you.

          The French played a pivotal role in helping the American Colonies win their independence from the British government in 1783. A few short years later, the French decided they wanted their freedom, too. This is not at all surprising that the passion for liberty spread to Europe, especially in France, where the social system had been corrupt and unjust for years. The First and Second Estates had all the wealth and power while the Third Estate struggled and starved. The Declaration of the Rights of Man was the official response of the people of France to oppression and tyranny, and it was approved by the National Assembly of France in 1789.
            Unlike the Declaration of Independence, which sought to reach a diplomatic decision and held war as a last resort, The Declaration of the Rights of Man was a document written to declare the people’s desire for freedom and equality, even if it meant overthrowing the government. It consists of 17 articles that make definitive statements about the rights all men ought to have an equal share in. In America, the biggest issue that led the people to war was the fact that they were not being given a voice overseas in England, where all their laws and liberties were being controlled. In France, the issue was not that none of the people had any say, but that some of the people had all the say. There was major class discrimination, and the lowest class did all the work and bore all the suffering. The 1st Article of the Declaration states, “Men are born and remain free and equal in rights. Social distinctions may be founded only upon the general good.”
            Because of the system of Estates (First Estate, Second Estate, and Third Estate), France was a top-heavy structure. The lowest estate had nothing, and the two higher estates had it all, which made it easy for corruption to spread throughout the nobility, and also the Church. Because of this corruption throughout all of France, even in the Church, the place that should have been an example of morality, very many rights were being denied to the poor and underprivileged. What kind of rights were the people asking for? Unfortunately, the rights within the 17 articles should never have been denied to them in the first place. Equality, religious freedom, and right to property are all included in The Declaration of the Rights of Man. The 13th Article reiterates the unfairness of this class system: “A common contribution is essential for the maintenance of the public forces and for the cost of administration. This should be equitably distributed among all the citizens in proportion to their means.” It is interesting that the same people who stormed the Bastille prison in violence and chaos just a month before proceeded to call out in their declaration for nothing more fervently than balance and order.  
            In conclusion, the Third Estate of France was a veritable time bomb, and The Declaration of the Rights of Man was the fuse. It gave to the greedy and corrupt First and Second Estates fair warning of the people’s desperation to be free and treated with equality.  The Declaration can be summarized by the very true statement found within its 16th Article: “A society in which the observance of the law is not assured, nor the separation of powers defined, has no constitution at all.” Unfortunately, the nobility and religious leaders refused to listen to the reasonable voices of the Third Estate, and so they answered to outright violence. 

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

1 John: 4: 7-10

Beloved, let us love one another,

because love is of God;
everyone who loves is begotten by God and knows God.
Whoever is without love does not know God, for God is love.
In this way the love of God was revealed to us:
God sent his only-begotten Son into the world
so that we might have life through him.
In this is love:
not that we have loved God, but that he loved us
and sent his Son as expiation for our sins.

Monday, January 7, 2013

A picture-dump post

I have just had what was probably the best week of my life, and all I want to do is share a little beauty, so here you go. God bless you, and enjoy!