Sunday, November 18, 2007

News - closing

I've decided to stop posting here for now. I've been posting the same material here as on my other blog, so I've decided to keep my other blog up instead of this one for now since college is keeping me busy and I don't have time to upkeep more than one or two blogs. Be sure and visit as often as possible.

Friday, October 26, 2007

What to do when you get a flat tire

First off may I just say, HELP!!! What am I supposed to do with a flat tire on my segway? How am I supposed to make it not flat?

So, for about a month now my friends have been telling my tires looked flat. They did not look flat to me and the segway still worked just fine, until today. Today I had been out for about a half hour when one of my tires randomly went flat. At first I though the sound I heard was just a leaf cauight on a wheel, but then the segway started to act up. A man I passed said, "got a flat tire, huh?" and then I knew, the rumors were true. My segway has a flat tire.

What do you do when your segway randomly gets a flat tire. Well, if you're smart you get off and walk the segway back home. I'm not so smart. I stayed on the segway, made a wrong turn or two, and rode it back to my dorm. I had to go very slowly. Sometimes the segway would randomly slow down. Other times it would lean too far forward or too far back. Some times it started going off to the right as if it wanted to topple over. I stayed on. I prayed. After some difficulties, I got back safely. If this ever happens to you, go no more than 5 miles per hour and keep a constant eye on the key for when the smiley face becomes a frown face (it will do this very frequently).

Anyways, now I have no way to return the DVDs I checked out that are due back Sunday before noon. Everyone is gone for fall break who could take me. What am I supposed to do? How do I make my tire not flat? HELP ME!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

I've Been Published!

Ignore the typos, they're the editor's fault, not mine.

Book Review
By Eddie Smith
Bethany House, 0764203924, PB, 172 pages, $14.99

In "How to be Heard in Heaven", Eddie Smith reminds readers that "as long as we whine to God about our problems, we'll see nothing. Begin to celebrate God's answer, and He will show it to you"
(p 130).
Smith explores prayer as an intimate relationship with Christ, wherein we acknowledge God's power and submit to His will. We should trust God to provide and should become expectant prayer warriors, praying as if God has already answered us.
Smith uses simple stories, concepts, and verses to support his ideas. His ideas are refreshingly different from those in typical books on prayer. He covers thought-provoking concepts (forgiveness, anxiety, guilt, egotism) with easy-to-understand language. Smith also discusses controversial church issues as faith healing and contemporary miracles. Occasionally you have to read something several times to understand it, but most of the book is a easy to follow. This book fits into church libraries best because Smith writes to mature teenagers and adults who want to enhance their relationship with Christ.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Sweeny Todd Trailers

So far there aren't many musical elements in the trailers, but here they are.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Dumbledore is Gay

J.K. Rowling has officially announced that her Harry Potter books are based on a Christian worldview. However, I also ran into the following article:*
That's right, Dubledore is gay. At first it kind of ruined my good opinion of the books, but then I started to think about it. Rowling says it was love that broke Dumbledore's heart, so I like to think that he realized his mistake and turned from it. Rowling also said that she was trying to promote tolerance of gay people. I like to think that she meant that gay people should not be discriminated against, but it's still a sin to be gay. I'm not against gay people. I'm against their actions, but I won't let that keep me from treating them like human beings. I don't know. I'm tending to think that Rowling is one of those, it's not a sin to be gay, people who think gay people have their rightful place in the church without repentence.

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Honk Honk - Riding the Segway Without a Helmet

I was extra careful on my segway today. Why? Because I forgot to wear my helmet and gloves! I realized this about halfway to my destination. I was going fast because rain was expected any moment, but I had to slow down. Luckily, it did not rain on me and I did not fall. I have fallen twice already, so I know the importance of a helmet and gloves. They shield your fall and lessen the bruises. They may also save your life if you hit a car (which I have not done). When riding in windy conditions, be sure to wear a jacket or sweater to keep you warm (you don't want to get a cold). Also, do not try to go too fast against the wind; you could lose your balance and fall. Watch for bumps and try to avoid them. Sidewalks will often be uneven. If you come upon part of a sidewalk that has tranformed into a stairway, do not attempt to go over it; get off the segway and walk it over the stairstep. If there's no traffic, it may be better to ride on the road. I often ride on the road in neighborhoods. However, be alert for cars. Keep your ears open for the sound of a car's engine or the sound of a car driving over and crushing fallen leaves. If a car does appear, pull over to the side of the road and let the car pass.

No good reactions today. However, I did not post some of the reactions that I got about a week ago when I went to the local Blockbuster store.

One woman yelled out, "I like that!"

A man told me he wanted to ride my segway. He begged and pleaded, but I said no. He asked me how much a segway costs. I told him $5000. Surprisingly he still said he was going to buy one (but I doubt he will). Another man who appeared to be with him told him he could make his own segway. It's true you can make your own segway. I saw a website for just such a purpose. However, buying one is much easier and may even be less expensive and less time consuming.

Some kids also waved at me. I waved back.

Some other kids I saw were playing with their toy guns. They stopped to look at my segway. One of them said, "Cool, I want one of those!" A friend of mine who saw this happen told me I must feel real good, promoting world peace. I guess my segway is a great way to stop violence. LOL.

Last of all, the best reaction of the day was a man who turned to me and said, "Honk, honk. You got a horn on that?" Unfortunately, I did not have my bell with me at the time or I would have gave it a ring.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

Broadway at a stand still*

NEW YORK - Stagehands and producers negotiated until nearly midnight Friday, hoping to resolve contract issues that could shut down much of Broadway just as the fall theater season gets under way. Both sides agreed to talk again Tuesday, said union spokesman Bruce Cohen. Discussions reportedly had been tense this week between Local One, the stagehands union, and the League of American Theatres and Producers. Most of the conflict has involved the thorny issue of load-ins, the complicated physical setting-up of a show in a theater. Producers say the rules governing load-ins are cumbersome and expensive, requiring more stagehands than needed. The union says the rules are necessary. The League initially set a Sept. 30 deadline to resolve the conflict and threatened to lock out the stagehands if an agreement was not reached, but talks have continued. The union, a member of the International Alliance of Theatrical Stage Employees, has been working without a contract since the end of July.

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

My Nightmares Come Alive

I feel extremely stupid right now. I wasn't thinking straight and I wasn't feeling well and I completely forgot to go to my fitness for life class today! My roommarte reminded me about twenty minutes past the time when class was supposed to start. It's my nightmares come true! This has happened to me before in other situations. Luckily I get 3 cuts, so I'll just use one of those. I don't think the teacher makes you makeup your labs anyway. We have to do labs where we test our wellness. Today we were going to test our flexibility. I hate missing class. Oh well.

In other news, my faculty friend cornered me today about skipping chapel so often. According to our Life Together Covenant I get 3 or 4 cuts per semester. They don't regulate it though and I thought I heard someone say at the beginning of the semester that chapel weren't required, so I've only been going once a week. There are 3 chapels every week. Anyway, my friend cornered me and said he wants me to go more often and that he was proud of me for going today. I guess he didn't notice that my roommate also skips chapel as often as I do. I don't know what it is about chapel I don't like. I grew up going to chapel once a week at a Christian school and I hated it. OUr chapels were so boring and I've never liked worshipping in a group setting unless I'm in the mood. I guess I feel pressured to worship the way everyone else does. It's so easy for me to get angry at chapel. I guess that's why I don't usually go.

Monday, October 1, 2007

Two One Dollar Bills

Two one-dollar bills fit neatly within my pocket. I reached for the money. What was money to me? What use did I have for two measly dollars? Perhaps I could buy some candy. Maybe I could buy a soda. No, I had a credit card for those sorts of things. My parents take good care of me; they pay for everything. They had even given me a fifty dollar gift card to Wal-Mart as a goodbye and good-luck-in-college gift, and here I stood at a Super Wal-Mart in Fort Wayne, Indiana, with the gift card and those two one-dollar bills.

What significance does two dollars have? When a small amount of money comes to you unexpectedly, it can have a lot of significance. Randomly coming into possession of two dollars makes a person wonder why they were given the money. They wonder, “Who would give money away? Why would they give money away?” Perhaps they did not need the money. Perhaps what they needed was the kindness. One act of kindness confuses the recipient. Why would you help someone you do not know?

Nervously, I reached into my pocket, took out the two dollar bills, and leaned over the cash register. Whispering gently to the cashier, I said, “Could you do me a favor? Could you take this money and apply it to the bill of the person behind me or just give it to them and let them use it in whatever way they want to?”

“You want me to do what?” the cashier looked confused.

I guessed I did not say it loud enough.

“Could you give this money to the person behind me?” I repeated.

“But… do you know her?”

“No.” I wanted to do something good for a stranger.

“Then, why? What do you want me do, again? Did I hear you right?”

“Please, give these two dollars to the person behind me.” Irritation rose up in me. Why wouldn’t she just do what I asked? Was it that hard? Why was it so strange for a person to want to do a good deed?

“Are you sure?”


The cashier took the cash reluctantly. For a moment, she seemed to consider pushing the cash back into my hands. It was as if she did not want me to freely give my money away. She did not seem to understand why someone would do something for someone else. Coming from California’s fast and furious, self-centered culture, I expected the Midwest to overflow with kind people. I thought the Midwest was the opposite of California. The fact that a small act of kindness would surprise someone in the conservative Midwest came as a shock to me. The United States continues to focus on self, even in the Midwest. I only gave away two dollars, but even this stood out as something that does not happen every day.

I left the register as soon as I had given the money to the cashier, having no desire for recognition. I saw the reaction of the cashier, but wondered about the recipient of my two dollar bills. How would she respond? Rachel Steiner, a friend of mine, observed the recipient’s reaction. The woman who had been behind me in line rejected the money at first. She and the cashier looked around to see where I had gone, but I was no where in sight. After a few moments’ hesitation, she took the money and used to pay for part of her bill. She had two carts full of groceries and four children with her. There was no doubt in my mind; she needed that money and she needed something to brighten up her day.

Rachel took her two dollar bills and gave them to another cashier. I stood nearby to watch how the recipient would react. The cashier took the money willingly and handed it to the two women standing behind Rachel. The older of the two looked puzzled.

“Did you know the person who was in front of you?” the cashier asked.

“No,” the older woman replied.

“I just assumed she knew you.”

“Wow,” the younger woman exclaimed. “Who does a thing like that these days?”

The person behind them asked what was happening and the two recipients started to talk nonstop about the two dollar bills a kind girl had given them

“That’s the way things should be,” one of the women told the person behind them.

“Nobody’s ever done that before for me. I’ve never seen anyone do that for anyone,” the other woman said.

“She must want some good for her,” they continued. “God looks out for you when you do good.”

“What a loyal lady.”

“We don’t even know her.”

“I don’t even see her anymore. She just disappeared.” They were surprised that Rachel had disappeared without any desire for recognition.

They could not hold up the line all day, so they eventually got around to paying for their purchase, but their smiles never left their faces. I wondered what their beliefs were. The way they talked about God and about Rachel’s deed of kindness, it sounded like they believed in karma and some sort of god. So many people believe in some sort of god, but think no further than that. I was unsure of what these people believed.

I do not think that any of the people who gained two dollars from a stranger that day really needed the money. The amount they spent on groceries made two dollars seem like nothing, but I am sure that a small gift of two one-dollar bills blessed their day. It took me a long time to find a line where someone actually came up behind me so I could give them the money. It did not take so long when Rachel gave her two dollar bills to a stranger. I believe God put us in the right places at the right time. Who knows what those two dollar bills did for those who received them, but the money served a much larger purpose in their hands than it did in my pocket.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007


I woke up this morning to twi beautiful rainbows promising a beautiful day ahead, even if it is hot outside and humid. Unfortunately I didn't get my camera quick enough, so I have no pictures of it.

"This is the Day the Lord has made. I will be glad and rejoice in it."

The rainbows seemed to promised hope and escape from the past. I have reason to rejoice in God's mercy and love today.

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

I'm Going to be Published!

Dear Harmony,
Congratulations on hitting the big time your very first month in college. Your review of the Martin book will be published this December in the winter quarterly issue of CHURCH LIBRARIES. Your other review of the Martin book will be published in the Christmas issue of THE CHRISTIAN COMMUNICATOR.
So, you've cracked two national magazines in your first half-month of being at Taylor Fort Wayne. I see a very successful future ahead for you. Keep up the good work.
Dr. Hensley

Grandma's Verse: Isaiah 55:8-9

Isaiah 55:8-9 (New International Version)
New International Version (NIV)
Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984 by International Bible Society

8 "For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,"
declares the LORD.

9 "As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.

Segways and Polo - Sports

Sunday, September 16, 2007

There is a God

Some short lessons and fun reactions

Two days ago I went out on my segway and I didn't fall. For once in my segway career, I did not fall! You see, segways can be safe and fun if you ride them the right way. Just don't get so comfortable that you forget to pay attention to where you're going! I did pick up a few new lessons, however. First of all, do not try to go too fast when riding against the wind. If the wind is blowing against you it can throw you off balance if you're not careful. Second of all, takes bumps slowly. Third, wear Off or some sort of mosquitoe spray to keep bugs off of you, especially if you go out in the evening. Speaking of bugs, you might want to wear safety glasses and go a bit slower when riding your segway near a river or some body of water. Bugs like to hang out near water in mass quantities. I learned this the hard way, hitting tons of bugs at once. I leaned my head forward a bit when I saw them coming so as to make them hit my helmet instead of my face. In the end, however, the bugs came off of me as the wind blew them away. Several actually flew away themselves, unharmed. Lastly, I learned that, while it is a stress reliever to go out on a segway on your own, it is a lot more fun to go with some friends. I try to get some of my friends who like to go biking to go with me. It's nice to have someone to talk to. Just don't fall from turning around to talk to them.I did get a few nice reactions. I can't remember them all now, but some teens commented that my segway was cool and another woman said, "I like your thingy." So far no one has lectured me on how walking is healthier, although I have gotten a few strange looks. Some bikers look at me with a questioning face as if they wanted to say, "Why do I have to exercise to get places? Why can't I have a segway too? I hate that girl because she can have one and I can't." One man gave me one of these looks before smiling the other day. I think my favorite reaction, however, is when bikers genuinely smile at me and nod their heads as if tipping their hats (or helmets) off to my cool contraption. Of course, even cooler than this is when people on motorcycles or in trucks honk at me. Some teenagers who obviously thought they were something yelled something out, but I couldn't understand them over their loud music.

Friday, September 14, 2007

They Were There

The chill of the morning air brushes on my cheek,

As I remember the good and bad memories of my past.

I remember every time I cried out for love,

Every time I weeped because of loneliness.

I was a star that shone dimly by itself in the sky,

And still I learned things from it,

And the cold air disappears,

When I know that YOU ARE THERE.

My parents that never left my side,

The ones who stretched out a loving hand,

And held me through the night.

What is there in a girl that is different,

That makes gloom seem right for her.

But to stand upright, to be tall inside,

Makes the sky brighten,

And the clouds clear,


Tuesday, September 11, 2007

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Review: Firewall

Action, violence, and Harrison Ford. “Firewall” has all the ingredients of another perfect suspense film.

Jack Stanfield (Harrison Ford) is your typical rich, family man. All he cares about is his family and work.

The family is complete with a beautiful, faithful wife (Virginia Madsen), annoying little brother (Jimmy Bennet), and rebellious older sister (Carly Schroeder).

Jack owns his own bank, and is a bank security expert. He designed a flawless, top security system for his bank.

Things change, however, when a group of men kidnap Jack’s family and threaten to kill them if he doesn’t find a flaw in his system and transfer $100 million stolen money into their account.

The group is led by Bill Cox (Paul Bettany of “Wimbledon” and “A Knight’s Tale”), who knows almost every single detail about Jack and his family.

It’s up to Jack to save his family and get the money back at the same time, turning the game around and giving the villains a taste of their own medicine.

No matter how similar a plot may be to Ford’s previous movies, there is no getting past how well he plays the roles. You never get bored with his acting. His emotions, facial expressions, and tone of voice always draw the audience in with a perfectly, tense moments.

Bettany takes on a new persona in the film. He normally does more sensitive, shy roles in movies such as “Master and Commander: The Far Side of the World” and “A Beautiful Mind.” One thing doesn’t change in his roles - he is always the clever English-man with some secret to unfold. Now, he is the brutal, unrelenting, deceiving Cox, who even resorts to giving Jack’s son cookies he is allergic to. Bettany is good at his new role. He is very mysterious. You are never sure whether he has a humane side to him or not. He even gets the kids on his side for a short while.

The plot, although unoriginal, is satisfying. It gets better as it goes along, and better, and better, until it comes to a perfectly thought out, but abrupt ending.

Jack’s attempts to escape the nightmare are put together well. At one point, he has a hidden camera in a pen he has in his shirt pocket. He gets close to his secretary (Mary Lynn Rajskub of TV’s “24”) and sneakily switches the pen to his secretary’s pocket.

The great thing about the ending is that it isn’t “cheesy.” The last fight scene doesn’t just happen. It is detailed and long, ending with an axe in the back of one of the villains.

For a suspense film, though, it fails to keep audiences on the edge of their seats. While there are plenty of twists to keep you interested, the film does tend to go on and on, and get a little boring in parts. The first two thirds of the film are all talk and no action. There are no special effects until the finale.

The one complaint I have is the language. The F word is used once, unnecessarily, and there are plenty of other offenses.

Still, director Richard Loncraine has managed to stage out a good drama. It’s not perfect, and it’s very predictable, but hey, that’s Harrison Ford.

“Firewall” is highlighted by its actors, and is sure to please any Ford or Bettany fan.

Sunday, September 2, 2007

New Blog, Again

I've started a new blog because it's an assignment for my computers class. The description is below.

The name of this blog is "Segway'n Through College." I've given it this name because I own a segway which I have named Brooklyn. I bought the segway as a means of transportation for college as well as a means of stress relief. Right now I am taking a computers class which requires me to start a new blog as an assignment, so here is my new blog!!! I already have three other blogs at and I will often post the same stuff on this blog that I will post on my other blogs. Still, this blogs has a specific purpose and that is college life, so I will be focusing on my segway adventures and my college experiences. I will often post devotionals and things I write for classes. Since my computers class also deals with ethics I will post my views and opinions on current events and popular trends and well as on my own interests.I'd like to start with a devotional I wrote as I entered college. I also thought it appropriate because it starts out talking about computers.

Sunday: The Lord's Day: Learning not to Judge

Growing up with a mother who works at a large church, I have experienced all the politics that go on behind the scenes. Yes, you heard me right. Even churches often act like businesses with the politics of the haves and the have-nots. No one and nothing comes without flaws.

Romans 3:23For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.

Should strife and earthly conflicts take place inside the church? No! After all, we are supposed to shine as a light to the world. But we cannot completely avoid these things. The key comes in doing your best to follow Christ’s example and praying regularly for the church community. We cannot help messing up here and there. We are human and messing up comes with human nature. However, we know that Christ redeems us and forgives us for the things we do wrong. He also admonishes us against allowing what we witness to control how we act and think.

More than once, I have allowed my own feelings to take over and control my actions and thoughts. I became bitter towards those involved in the politics of the church and wanted to rebel. God still had a thing or two to teach me. I tried continually to respect authority and keep a healthy attitude about things. Then the other day, I read something that changed my outlook forever. I read Philippians 1:15-18, mentioned in Max Lucado’s book, “Every Day Deserves a Chance.”

Philippians 1:15-18 It is true that some preach Christ out of envy and rivalry, but others out of goodwill. The latter do so in love, knowing that I am put here for the defense of the gospel. The former preach Christ out of selfish ambition, not sincerely, supposing that they can stir up trouble for me while I am in chains. But what does it matter? The important thing is that in every way, whether from false motives or true, Christ is preached. And because of this I rejoice.
Before I go any further, I have to give you a little background from my experience with prejudice. One time, my church discovered that a pastor there had covered up an old sin. The elders offered him counseling and a probationary period in a lower position, but he refused. Although he seemed to have repented of the original offense, his pride kept him from taking his lumps. Instead, he quit and started a new, competing church. Many in the congregation split off to follow him.

At first, I hated the man. I believed such a man should not pastor a church. I failed to realize that God can bring good out of the bad. Although the politics continue in both his church and my church, the important thing is the fact that Christ is preached. Does that make what he did right? No! But it does mean that Christ is now preached to more people!

When Paul wrote Philippians, he was in prison. He had experienced prison and worse in the past and, now, supposed brethren were doing things just to hurt him. He did not let the trials and persecution get him down. He knew God was in control and that God was using him to preach the gospel. He knew that the important thing was that Christ was preached.

In verse 15, Paul mentions that there are some who preach the gospel only for their own gain and with the wrong motives, but in verse 18 he says,

What then? Only that in every way, whether in pretense or in truth, Christ is preached, and in this I rejoice, yes, and will rejoice.
No matter what the politics are behind the scenes, I should rejoice that Christ is preached. Let God judge; I am here to be a light to the world.

Friday, August 31, 2007

The Grasp of Fate

She had run from her past. She did not stop until the time came, this time in which fate snatched her up in the cold grasp of its hands. It had the power to do anything with her life, anything at all. At its worst, it could even take away her life. She had run into fate's grasp, and now it was up to fate to decide her future. Fate, however, takes kindly to playing tricks on a person’s mind, and so it did with Ginger Kate Tucker.

It was a quiet day in Ginger's life, one that seemed to have no end. As she stood in the familiar garden, she could feel the faint, icy chill of fate's hands on her shoulders. Fate touched her in such a way that she had no other choice. No matter how painful it would be, she would have to remember. Yet fate was not done with her; oh, no, it still had deceiving plans in mind for her.

A strange headache made her dizzy and sure of nothing. Her thoughts circled in her mind. Fate had no mercy. In an effort to relax, she found her way to what looked like a comfortable bench and sat there. The soft feel of the wind eased her in a way she had not known before. Her environment was strange to her.

As she became increasingly familiar with her surroundings, her memory began to kick in. She looked to her right and to her left. It was fall: the leaves were falling, the wind was blowing, and it was cold. The sun prevailed over the dark clouds for the moment, but rain was on its way. She looked about, her sharp, skinny blue eyes rolled from place to place, and all she saw was peaceful. Fate had begun its deed.

A young girl appeared a short distance away. The image was skipping along the paved path, singing a silly song or two. It had a small, cute, rosie smile, skinny blue eyes, and short, brown, braided hair. It looked like a smaller version of her, but in her confusion, she did not recognize the scrawny figure that was once her own, along with the bangs that never stayed straight.

Ginger shivered a little, pulling her jacket tighter. Fate had her where it wanted. She was in a state of madness. Somehow the image of her younger self that Fate had created in her mind awed her. Fate took away what little confidence was left in her. Ginger took pity on the happy, yet lonely, innocent child.

"Child, come, sit next to me. I am in great need of a cheerful song," came the soft tone of her voice.

"Shall I sing for you?" Fate's creation of a younger self asked her.

Fate took up the part of the child and immediately began to sing a song about memories. It knew this would torture the fairly aged woman.

"Do sit," Ginger interrupted.

"Tell me a story,” the young girl asked, “one that is during a happy time, spring, maybe? One that has sad things in it, one that brings pain to one's soul. I can see many things in your eyes. Tell me your story. Does it hurt?"

"Yes, I suppose I could fit a story under all those. I miss my young, innocent days. They were taken away from me, you see?" was the calm reply.

"How was it taken away?" Fate inquired.

"Fate did not agree with me. It left me in misery for some time. After my mother died, my father had a hard time raising me, so he gave me away. I was put up for adoption. Times were hard. The orphanage was not the greatest place to live, but it was there that Fate came back to me," her tone of voice rising a little.

"Do tell me.” Fate was enjoying its hold on her life.

Fate laughed at what she said and refused to leave her be. It would not lose its grasp on her; playing tricks was too much fun. It was pride, as well, that kept fate's grasp. The war would not be lost.

"I met Joseph at the orphanage. We became good friends, and never left each others’ sides," she continued. "Those were sad and tiring times, memories that I will not say out loud. They were all unhappy moments."

Fate continued to laugh at how well all its plans were going and decided to relax, and listen to her telling a story which reminded Fate of the many proud achievements of its grasp on her life. Fate enjoyed hearing it from her. It was all the more painful for her and all the more joyous for it.

"Do tell me more," the image begged, "why were they sad times?"

A tear rolled down Ginger's cheek. One single tear was all it took for Fate's laughter to grow even louder, sharply cutting into a person’s heart and soul. It laughed at her several times as its control over her grew tighter every second.

"Joseph was…," she gave a long sigh. Another tear rolled down her cheek, fell off her chin, and quickly found its way to the pavement beneath her feet.

Fate, it having been a long time since it last meddled with the young man's life, did not at first remember who this Joseph was, and what it had done to his life.

"Yes, I remember!" Fate said to itself.

"I loved Joseph dearly, "Ginger continued. "He died when he was 19. I was 18 at the time. He had proposed to me only a month before. We were going to be married here, in this garden. The doctors could not tell what had caused the death. At the time it seemed that fate did not agree with me."

"Fate has its own pride. It holds every single living person in its hands. It uses the fate of people around you to bring misery to your heart," Fate poured its unloving words out of the image's mouth.

"No!" Ginger screamed out, waving her hands wildly.

Fate had her in denial. She was running again from her past, from the truth. However, this was not the direction Fate had her headed for. Oh, no, it had barely begun its deed. This was but the first step of torture. Now, it knew, she must really call out for her memories, all of them, even the bad ones. This would be the climax of Fate's dealings with her.

"Leave me alone!" Ginger repeatedly yelled.

The image disappeared, but Fate did not. It held its grasp firm.

Ginger sat quietly now, echoes of the past surrounding her. The wind softly blew her once dark, brown hair. What little sunshine was left shined in her deep blue eyes, and the smell of burning firewood brought a strange grin to her face.

Fate whispered in her ears, telling her dark things that made her frown. She knew Fate surrounded her, she knew Fate twisted her thoughts, she knew she had no choice. The past was prying into her heart, her very mind. Like the sly lioness seeking out her prey, Fate crouched low and made its attack. Her past revealed itself. Fate had made its call to Past. Past also enjoyed playing with the mind, sometimes for good, other times for bad. Pride, too, does this, along with Death, Life, Fear, Pressure, and Dreams. However, whatever their powers, Fate is the master of them all.

The orphanage was a dirty, terrible place. It was surrounded by fields that went on and on, fields that never turned green and seemed to be the very earthly image of death. The only place nearby was an old cemetery, but a mile away. It was death; no one dared step foot onto its grounds. The place held mysteries unknown to many. No one had been buried there for years. At night the dead seemed to wail, but the mistress of the orphanage warned the orphans that it was just the wind, and if she heard any more complaints there would be no dinner the next day. Still, there were rumors of the horrors it held. Some said that Fate and all that went about doing its will lived there. Whatever the truth was, no one took to it; the rumors were too entertaining to ignore.

Ginger’s final year at the orphanage was almost good, but Fate hardly plays the role of good; rather, it uses good to make evil even more torturous.

It was spring time. Over the years the Mistress had softened. She was much kinder than when Ginger had first come to the orphanage. They had become friends. The mistress had given Ginger permission two years before to plant a garden. The garden, now finished, was peaceful and relaxing. It was the lone place of beauty in a world without sign of life, the one place the orphans actually wanted to be.

Joseph, once his final year was up, had stayed an extra year to wait for Ginger. He was a sweet, gentle, good, young man. He had taken up a job at the orphanage helping with various tasks. It was not much of an income, but it kept him close to her, and it was an opportunity to stay and wait for her.

This was the special day he had planned very thoroughly. It would plan out to either a good or bad result, hopefully good. It would all take place in the garden.

“Ginger,” called the Mistress.

“Yes, Mistress,” was Ginger’s calm reply.

They were in the kitchen cleaning dishes, one of Ginger’s daily chores about the orphanage. Ginger did not always have to do her chores. She had completed her studies two years before that; there was no more school work to be done. Sometimes she would serve as an aide in the classrooms; other times she would do various chores about the orphanage. There was not much else to be done about the dreary, uncheerful place. This was how she filled her time. She could not legally leave the orphanage until she was 19.

“Ginger, we are almost finished with the dishes, and there is not much else that needs to be done, why don’t you go for a walk and enjoy yourself a bit,” the mistress said.

“Nonsense. I could not well leave you here alone, now, could I?” Ginger replied.

“I keep good company by myself, child. Now get along with yourself. Have a good day and whatever comes with it. And see to it that Fate toys not with your mind today, for there are good things ahead for ya’. I can sense it,” she lectured.

“But...,” Ginger protested.

“Off with ya’. I won’t have you hangin’ round here all day near the dirt and rags of an old lady and her dishes.”

The mistress was a kind woman. She had not always been, but being around children had softened her heart. Ginger had made an effort to see into the woman’s dark, hate-filled eyes. She had been successful and found her way into the lady’s heart over the years, as had many other of the orphans. The days she had spent at the orphanage had been harsh and hard at first. Joseph had come when she was about the age of 11. They had become friends at once. She was his personal tour guide about the old, musty place. Ginger had brought cheer to the orphanage. Even with the bad memories of what had taken place there, it had been worth the effort to soften the mistress. Now all that was once sad and dreaded, had become the very light of love. The surroundings and settings of death did not change, but there was enough change to add a bit of happiness to all that was there.

She left the room after giving the mistress a small hug, and headed for the garden. As she sat on a small bench within the peaceful place, she could not help but look all around her. However, something strange seemed to draw her attention to the old, lifeless grave yard that layed less than a mile away. It seemed to call to her: Fate was calling her there.

“Surprise!” came a starling voice from behind.

“Joseph! What gives you the nerve to come up behind me and startle me like that?” Ginger questioned, turning around to see the young man with his handsome, green eyes and dark, black hair.

Joseph stood tall. Although he had a scrawny figure, he was still very strong and a sight to see when he was proud of himself. He chuckled a little and then came around to where she sat and took a seat next to her.

“I have every right to scare the girl I love with all my heart,” he said with laughter.

“Oh, if that is how you feel about me,” Ginger scolded, turning away from him, also giving a short giggle.

“So what are you doing out here all alone?” Joseph inquired.

“Well, I came to get some peace and quiet, if you do not mind!” she told him with a smile on her face.

“Alrighty then, I guess you don’t want this.” Joseph revealed a small rose that was just a bud. “Open the bud,” he gently ordered.

“What? Is there another scary surprise in it?” she asked.

“Just open it,” he ordered again.

She looked down at the small bud and slowly opened it, careful not to ruin its beauty. Inside there was a shining ring that had a jewel shaped like a flower on it. The ring did not consist of a genuine jewel or of real gold, but it was beautiful.

“Once we start make a liven’ for ourselves, I will be able to afford a real ring. I hope this is enough for now,” he told her.

“Are you asking me to marry you?” Ginger questioned.

“Sure I am,” he answered.

“Yes, of coarse it’s enough! It will last us a life time!” she cried out.

It was a happy moment for both of them. Her smile shined brightly. When she returned, everyone in the orphanage could tell what had happened. They knew it would happen sooner or later, but now it had.

They had planned to hold the wedding two months later in that very same garden.

However strange it may have been, there was still that calling to go to the graveyard. The calling replayed in her mind continuously: that feeling she had had right before Joseph had surprised her. The cemetery called to her. It had been Fate. It was her turn to be taken hold of by Fate, her turn to have her life ruined.

The graveyard was a smelly, gruesome place. It was death in every possible way. Ginger wandered about looking at the gravestones. Each told a story of the person buried there. The stories were all very similar. This seemed strange to her.

“May I help you, young lady?” A strange, unknown voice asked. It sounded like the voice of Fate itself.

“I was just observing all these gravestones. They hold much history,” she replied.

“Yes, the history of criminals can be very interesting. That is why I took up this job. I am the caretaker of this graveyard. I am a lonely man myself. Not many take to my hobbies, so I live a comfortable life out here doing my job,” the old man that had now appeared told her.

Ginger, already having been in a fearful mood, did not think to ask him any further questions of what he used the money for if he never left the place, or where he got his food from. None of these questions or even the thought to suspect something crossed her mind.

“Criminals?” she inquired.

“Yes, criminals. All buried here, away from the respected, good people. Suppose they deserved it. Somethin’ bout this place spooks me in wonder and awe. Sometimes I think they haunt the place with their ghosts, but I’ve never seen em’,” the crooked man mentioned.

Fate had entered her life for good at that moment. It had beckoned her there to show her where her fate in many ways lay.

A sudden shadow had come over her at that moment that made her want to leave immediately. She knew that she had to, but how? The old man seemed crazy and out of his wits.

“I really must go. They are waiting for me back at the orphanage,” she told the man kindly, but with a distinct tone to her voice that made her sound tense.

“So soon?” the elderly man asked.

“Yes. It was nice meeting you,” she told him, and quickly ran from the place back to where she knew safety was.

As she arrived back at the orphanage, a chill came over her. One of the younger orphans ran up to her mumbling words at a fast pace that she could not understand.

“Slow down, child,” she said, putting her hand on the child’s shoulder.

“We don’t know how it happened so quickly but...” the child paused to catch her breath.

“Yes, what happened?” Ginger said anxiously.

“Joseph, he has come down with an awful temperature, Miss Tucker. He is very sick. The mistress has called for a doctor, but seein’ that we be so far away from any place with medical resources, it will be a day or two before we can get any help,” the child finished.

“Take me to him,” Ginger said, “at once.”

The doctor came three days later. They did their best, but within the month, Joseph had died of an unknown cause.

“We have no money to bury him all fancy and like,” the mistress told Ginger.

They were sitting in the hallway outside of the room where Joseph’s dead body lay.

“Not even anywhere nice and full of life. I am sorry Ginger,” the mistress said.

Tears rolled down Ginger’s face. Her eyes no longer had happiness in them.

“Mr. Drob, who lives down at the old cemetery has offered to bury him there.” The mistress knew this would not make anything better.

“Buried with criminals. What history would lie on his gravestone? Here lies Joseph, a good man, not a criminal. But not rich enough to not be buried with such terrible people. May his ghost haunt with them forever!” Ginger yelled out.

“At least then he’d be buried. His corpse is no thing to be left to disappear in the wind, nor placed upon fire to burn to its crumbs of ashes,” was the remark of the mistress.

“I will not see him dishonored by those criminals!” Ginger’s tears doubled now.

“I am sorry Ginger. I know you love him, but this is the best thing there is. I know it will torture you to see him buried among such others, but just as much as to see his body burn in flames.” The mistress leaned over and gave Ginger a hug. “Ginger, you have brought love and life to this dead, forsaken place. Do not let the loss of Joseph ruin your life forever.”

Ginger had eventually consented to the deed. She had known in her heart that it was the best thing. However, she could not dwell on her memories forever, and when the chance came, she had left the place, intending to never come back. She had run.

Now she sat in that same garden near the orphanage that was filled with so many memories. She did not dare visit the place because it scared her to let herself dwell on her past once again. She had let her past get to her, she had cried out for it, and now Fate held its grasp tight over her life. The graveyard stood within walking distance. She could make out the very gravestone which stood above the burial place of Joseph, the man she had loved for so long. Fate had made her remember. That was enough for her. She did not wish to go any closer to the haunted cemetery which contained her beloved.

“No!” she cried out, screaming as hard as she could.

The image of her younger self appeared once again. She could see the child, so innocent, so brave.

“Go away, do not let Fate get you, too!” she yelled.

All was a blur now. She could not see well enough to distinguish what anything was.

Then came the silent pause of a moment or two. Not long afterwards, the image said in a low, evil tone, “Are you mad? I am Fate.”

Ginger screamed. The image changed shapes and circled in her mind. Everything was changing shape and colors, and Fate revealed itself to her now. Continuously she screamed. Her cries could be heard from miles away.

“I am Death!” she cried out louder and louder, “Fate has entered my life and will not let go!”

There was a sudden silence. Fate had lost its grasp.

Ginger fell to the ground in shock. She was dead.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

When Daddy Smiled

Everything seemed to be going so well. My brother got saved at church that Easter Sunday. Daddy was able to go too. Daddy was so excited about seeing my brother get baptized, but he was getting weaker. He was too weak to go to church. We doubted that he would last long enough to even be alive on the scheduled date. So we brought out a horse trough, filled it with water, and brought dad outside to see brother get baptized. Daddy's eyes were still closed. It would all be pointless if dad wasn't even conscious of what was happening. When it finally took place, daddy stood up and opened his eyes. He didn't seem to care if people wanted him to stay sitting and resting. He had that attitude where he was determined that no one would get in his way. For the first time in a long while, tears of joy streaked down my cheeks. Our family was happy. Light seemed to shine from heaven. Daddy was looking better after that. His tumors didn't show so much. Our prayers seemed to be answered for a short while. It didn't last long though. Daddy died four days later. I sent my son home. Six is not an age to be troubled with such things. My sister brought her son to the funeral. I remember just watching him as he stood and stared at the vase that contained daddy's urns. Sis sent him home after that. He was only five years old. Sis wanted to put coffee beans in with daddy's urns. Daddy loved to drink coffee. When it got to where he couldn't drink it, we got him some coffee beans just so he could smell them. The funeral was beautiful. Daddy would have liked it. Still, no matter how sad things may have been, God had answered our prayers, just not in the way we had expected. I'll never forget that day when daddy opened his eyes, stood up, and smiled. Even though the happiness only lasted a short time, it was a happy time, and I'll never forget it.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Silence - A response to the sudden stop of a bird's squawking

Why the sudden silence?

Coming so swift and so fast.

Nothing to warn.

Just a quick entrance,

leaving all behind.

Show me your meaning,

dear sir.

I know not what it is.

This strange moment,

it fills my ears with nothingness

I hear nothing.

I see nothing.

I feel nothing.

I am alone in the world with you.

You who jump from around the corner.

You who bring fright to all,

and at other times peace.

So, why not tell me your meaning?

I am puzzled and befuddled.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Personal Monday: An Old Weight Loss Journal

Thursday, November 03, 2005

My mom and I talked about weight loss the other morning. I have decided to write down what I eat. Writing down what you eat can really help. You do not realize how much you eat until you stop and think about it. Writing down I eat reminds me of my commitment and makes me think about what I can do to change my eating habits. Drinking water helps a lot too. It helps me suppress my appetite.

Wednesday, I walked over to my mom's work after school. She works at the church that is on the same campus as my school. It is not that far of a walk. It takes me about 10 minutes to walk over. Today, however, I actually found myself enjoying it. I knew I had to walk faster and faster. Walking can be a good exercise if you do it often enough. The longer I walk, the faster I go, the more of a work out I get. I will have to walk more often from now on. I have two dogs. I should take them on walks more often. It is a simple thing to do and does not take too much effort. The more I do it, the healthier I get. I can't just walk and do nothing else, though. Not if I want results.

I watched Biggest Loser on TV last night. That show really inspires me. I would like to be on it some day. Not for the money, but for the results. It would teach me how to eat right and would push me to the limit. I would have to persevere and not give up. The people on that show make a choice to change their lifestyles, and gain a healthier body in return. I hope I can do that. I ma not be on TV, but I do have a choice to make and I choose now to be healthy and to do what is right. I will have determination, I will persevere, and I will lose weight!

I actually weigh more than some of the people on "Biggest Loser." How embarrassing is that? But I am not embarrassed! I weigh 280 pounds, so what! I have seen girls go around complaining about their weight and saying how they are chubby. Others do not want to say how much the weigh. They want to keep it hush hush. Me, I do not care. I do not see what the big secret is. I am not negative by saying how much I weigh to myself. I may be outright with it and talk openly about it, but it is o big deal. I am not wallowing in self-pity. I am now trying to do something about it.

It can be so hard sometimes to say no to my craving. I have had enough to eat. So what do I do when I want to eat but have already eaten enough? I literally have to think to myself, "I do not need food, I do not need food. I will not crave, I will not crave." Just the other day in my speech class at MJC a girl came in with McDonalds. She said she had to eat because she was "starved." As I saw her get the food out, my mouth began to water. Of course, I could not eat right then, but I surely could have gotten some fast food after class on the way home. I had to ignore this craving. I wanted food, but I did not need it. I may have gotten past it this time, but I still craved that food. That is the key. I need to train myself to not desire those foods. There are other, healthier foods to eat. I do not even need caramel to make an apple taste good. I can still eat fast food every once in a while, but I need to control how much I eat. Instead of a medium French fry, maybe a small. Even at home, when I am relaxed, I need to find something to do when I think I am hungry, but really am not.

Writing things down in a journal really helps. It reminds me of what I am doing and gives me a place to write down all my feelings. It has helped me a lot.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Sunday Comic

taken from

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Cross Country Trip

Well I'm at college now. I drove cross country and took LOTS of pictures. I'll be posting them on and off over the next month or so. I've been taking lots of pictures and will be posting them at my photo blog:

Monday, August 20, 2007

On my Way

I'm on my way to college, so I won't be posting very often in the next week. Feel free to check out my older posts.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Proud Owner...

of my own official segway!!! I bought a segway for college today (can't afford a car). This afternoon I took it out for a little practice. It was so much fun! I did not get one "Walking's Healthier" yell, thank goodness. The reactions were positive. Some people pointed. Some teens honked the horn on their car. Some just yelled out, "cool!" The best reactions came from the kids, though. Two kids were playing and I could see they liked the segway. I talked to them a few short moments. My favorite reaction came from a little boy and girl who turned to their father and said, "I want to try!!! Can I do it!" Unfortunately its not safe to let anyone else ride it. Even I was having trouble with it every once in a while. It was fun, though. I got used to going up and down the rounded curbs of the sidewalks and the bumps stopped bothering me after a while. The nice thing about the newer models, which I got a good deal on a used one, is that you turn just by leaning the handles the way you want to go. So, I got to do a lot of fun maneuvers. I am thinking about riding it to church tomorrow morning! Won't that be fun. For now, I'm tired. It's hot our, and you have no idea how much exercise it takes to run one of these things. I'll post pics when I get a chance.

Saturday at the Movies

I've been watching a lot of movies lately and thought I would post some quick short reviews on them.

Rating: four out of five stars

Comments: I can see why it did not get the best reviews in the world. The book is probably better and the film can slow in parts. However, I loved the acting and the story was not half bad. Most of all, I loved the soundtrack. The story is fairly predictable, but fun and enjoyable.

Christian Remarks: Twice in the film sexual activity is implied. There are also dark witches in the film. Ghosts appear often (as the comic relief). It is not the best film for a younger child, but mature Christian teens might enjoy the film for what it is: fiction. I certainly plan on buying this one.

Becoming Jane
Rating: Five out of Five stars

Comments: I was very surprised at how much I liked Anne Hathaway in this. She has grown a lot since Princess Diaries. I only wish she had a stronger English accent. Maggie Smith was wonderful. All the acting was great. Acting combined with script had me guessing throughout the entire film what Austen characters are based on which people. The story was fairly predictable. We already know that Austen never got married. The filmmakers did a good job with aging the characters as time went on in the film. The scenery and sets were beautiful. The soundtrack was beautiful. The story was beautiful. Any Jane Austen fan will enjoy this one. Another film I plan on buying.

Akeelah and the Bee
Rating: Five out of five stars

Comments: This film is truly a feel-good movie. It encourages you to go after your dreams. The acting is good. The script is good. The movie is good. Can you believe it was made by Starbucks?

Christian Remarks: The race that Akeelah makes, pushing onward to the end of the spelling bee, reminds me of the race we as Christians must run. The film points out that the only fear holding you back is the fear of yourself, the fear that you're not good enough, the fear that others will mock you. But you must press forward. Akeelah gets help from her community, the same way we get help from each other in the Christian community. When Akeelah lies about her parental permission for the bee, she gets the full consequences. There are a few swearwords, but other than that it is a fairly clean movie.

Here are some other films I watched this weekend that you might enjoy:

Scoop: Although its perception of the afterlife is wrong and the film has several sex scenes, overall this is a good and hilarious film, although predictable.

Hollywoodland: The first third of the film is fairly clean, but the rest is chalk full of dirty jokes and bad language. The story is good. The acting is good. I recommend it to anyone who can handle the R rating. Just watch how it affects you afterwards.

Invincible: A great, clean film about following your dreams.

Friday, August 17, 2007


My dad pointed out a sign to me the other day. It was a sign for the Christadelphians cult. He said he had heard of it a long tyime ago and disagreed with it. I asked him to look it up for me and he sent me the link above. Looks pretty messed up to me. basically they believe in Jesus but deny all of the major Christian doctrines. I'm not sure what to make of it. I don't even know what they really believe, juts what they don't believe. What do you think?

Entertainment Friday: Movies


I'm looking forward to this one. It'll probably be rate R, but I just want to see it because I was forced to read it in high school. Looks like a good cast, other than Angelina Jolie.

The Scorpian King 2

I liked the first one overall. Didn't like the Rock's acting, but it was a good movie and good blot, even if the costuming was overly unmodest for the women.

The Jungle Book
BBC is making a movie of Jungle Book. Is it just me, or have too many versions of this book been made already?

The Wackness
Can you believe Mary Kate Olsen is doing something without her sister? Can you believe she's even doing something? I don't think she's a very good actress. Every movie she's made has plopped. Maybe she'll do better without her sister.

Jurassic Park 4
Can't they make any real good and original movies any more instead of boring sequels?

Dan in Real Life
This one does not look half bad.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Driving's Complicated

I was going to take my driver's test today just for the experience, but guess what? I didn't know I was supposed to bring proof of registration for the car! That's not all. My dad had his registration in his car (the car I was going to use), but it was from 2006, not 2007! My mom thinks God was saving me from the rude woman who would have given me the test. I guess that's possible. Anything's possible with God. Given this, I thought it appropriate to repost the following (which I wrote after I took my third permit test):

I had a wierd dream last night. In the dream, I left my driving permit at home and needed to drive somewhere. So, I went ahead and started to drive, but in a training wheel car that resembled a bike. It told police I was a driver in training. There were police out everywhere looking for student drivers. I made too wide a turn and one of them pulled me over, not to give me a ticket, but to make me redo the turn and practice it until I got it right. I never found out how things ended for me, though, because the phone rang and woke me up.

If there is any person qualified to write a book review of the California Driver’s Handbook, it’s me. No, I do not work for the DMV, and no, I am not a perfectionist driver. In truth, I am very afraid of driving. While still on my first permit, I got in an accident. With my driver instructor, my sandal got caught on the pedal and I pushed the gas pedal instead of the break. This caused me to get into a minor bumper accident, no damage. I cried when I got home. Needless to say time came and went and I did not go for my license. My permit expired. Since then I have taken the permit test two more times and gotten better at passing each time. I always passed, but each time the number of missed questions lessened. I actually was scheduled to take my permit test earlier this month for the third time, but my mom lost my passport. A weeks worth of reading was wasted. Luckily, this time I highlighted the important parts and when my mom found my passport a month later I only had to skip read the highlighted parts. Two days ago, on June 28th, 2007, I took the test and only missed two questions. My picture would have turned out good if my double chin had not shown up. It has a way of coming out like that. I hate being fat, I hope to lose weight. Nevertheless, I will not let my bad health drag me down. I did dream once that my double chin saved me from a man who tried to slit my throat. The knife did not go deep enough to kill me, although I did lose some blood. It’s a real dream I had. Anyway, back to the driving thing. As already stated, I hate driving. I’m always afraid I’ll do something wrong. I remember my first experience with driver’s rage. I pulled over to let people pass, but when I tried to pull back into the lane a driver got mad at me and followed me to my turnoff where he proceed to honk at me and flip me off. I eventually got over my fear and got back on the road, but then college came. When you live in NYC you don’t drive much. Thus, it has been over a year since I last drove and my old fears have returned this summer. Since I am attending a different college this fall, I will need to drive and I will need a car. Needless to say, I have so far avoided all my parents attempts to get me on the road, but I really do need to try. Maybe I should go back to that handbook for some help, but don’t expect a book review of it. I already hate it enough, I doubt I would be able to keep from becoming overly judgmental and bias.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Bookmobile Wednesday: Redeeming Love by Francine Rivers

Rating: Five out of Five Stars

Plot: Angel's past has haunted her all her life. Sold in to prostitution at age eight, she has never known real love. When Michael Hosea comes along, asking her to marry him, she refuses. Hosea refuses to give up. He feels God calling him to break down Angel's barriers and to marry her. He takes her to his home, but she runs away. He goes after her and brings her back and she runs away again. Angel must learn that real love does exist and that Jesus awaits her acceptance of His forgiveness.

Comments: Angel is not the only character who must learn a thing or too. Michael Hosea must learn to trust God and not let His anger or desires control him. Paul, a friend of Michael's, must learn to let go of his prejudices towards Angel.
Francine Rivers cleverly brings characters and events into the lives of these people in order to break down their barriers. Michael shows Angel true love. A family moves in nearby Michael’s farm and shows Angel what a real family can look like. When Angel tells them her previous occupation they do not judge her; they tell her they want to become good friends with her. One of the members of that family falls in love with Paul and softens his heart, helping him to see past his own stubbornness. Every time Angel runs away something happens to save her from the past that seeks to control her.

Rivers does a wonderful job of developing these characters and their relationships. She spends a good twenty or thirty pages just on the prologue so the reader has an idea of Angel’s past. She tastefully describes the sex scenes without going into too many details. She never pulls a “too much information (tmi).”

As usual, Rivers spends a great deal of time bringing Biblical principles and ideas into her book. She shows the proper relationship between a married man and woman. The story parallels the book of Hosea and the thoughts of the characters as they transform liken to what goes on in the head of most believers. Throughout the book God whispers to the characters in a subtle way as if He were the conscience of the characters developed by their knowledge of the Bible. Satan also has his say in the book, but as always ends up defeated.

One of River’s most popular reads, “Redeeming Love” deserves a chance from any Christian man or woman over the age of fifteen (it may be fit for some younger, but should only be read by mature readers who can take its themes seriously and can understand the sexual part of the book).

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Charles Billingsley

As I lay in bed tonight, trying to fall asleep, I couldn't get the chorus to a certain song out of my head. The song is sung by Charles Billingsley, who is a great Christian singing artist. I've seen him in concert twice, both times I met him in the lobby and he seemed a very humble man stuck on praising God. He also has a great voice! I believe he is currently the worship pastor at the local church connected with Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia. Anyway, here are the lyrics to the chorus I could not get our my head (I don't remember the name of the song or the lyrics to the rest of the song, but just these short sentences and verses have a whole lot of meaning in them - I think that's why I can't get them out of my head - they popped up pretty randomly - it's like God wanted me to take a short time to sit and reflect in awe of His great mercy):

He paid for all my sins with love
And at the cost of His own blood
He paid for all my sins with love
Love that has completely,
Love that has forever freed me

Hollywood Stars Losing Weight,,20050577,00.html?xid-bertinelli-alley-cover-story-aol-entertainment-news

Remember those Jenny Craig commercials with Kirstie Alley? Well now she's talked about losing weight a little more. The video of the interview has expired, but I read the short article and the short excerpts from the interview in the article and I have to say what they state is all true. I've copied it below for you:

On Feeling Ashamed

Bertinelli: You just don't want people to see what you look like, because you can hear their brains going.

Alley: You don't want them to see what you've become.

On Getting Past It:

Bertinelli: We're taking responsibility. No one shoved that food in my mouth except me.

Alley: Exactly. It's making me more ethical as a person who's taking responsibility for how she got there in the first place.

Gay Memorial Canceled

A man's memorial was canceled at a church in Texas when the church found out the man was gay. The church claimed they did not know about his homosexuality until pictures were provided for a movie, to be played at the memorial, of the man and his partner together. The church also offered to pay for hosting the memorial somewhere else as well as for any food or services needed.

What do you think of this? I believe homosexuality is a sin, but I am not sure what to make of this. It seems to me that if the church truly canceled the memorial on principile they would have canceled it all together and not offered to pay for holding the service somewhere else. Then again, I understand that the church was trying to state that it was not being judgmental of the man, his partner, and his friends and family. However, if this is what they wanted they could have held the service anyway and just requested there be no mention of the man's homosexuality and not played the video. I'm sure there were many other options available as well. Surprsingly enough, the pastor's wife is the sister of Joel Osteen. If you ask me, the whole thing could have been handled better. It could have been talked out and sure could have used a lot more prayer over the issue. I think it should have been canceled all and all, but that's just me. I won't be judgmental of the man or the church. That's for God to decide. The church certainly stood out and made the news with this, though, didn't it?

An Old Weight Loss Journal Entry

I forgot to post my weekly weight loss entry yesterday, so here it is. Mind you, it's two years old.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

How appropriate is it that my last day of freedom was on Halloween?

I could burn all the leftover candy. It would be my official commitment to letting go of “fat food.” Perhaps I should save it and it will be there for a reward every once in a while.

I am going to have to shun temptation, unless I want my “diet” to fail.

Diet is such a broad term. There are so many possible “diets” out there. You might see a diet as a prison that takes freedom away.

But what is freedom? Don’t I truly gain freedom if I gain health and lose weight by exercising and eating right? It opens a door to respecting my body, but still being myself.

Going on a diet will not mean eating only healthy food. I can still eat other foods; I just need to watch my proportions and how much I eat. I will not stop eating or go on any specific diet, although I may try one method or another in the process. I will eat less, have a more balanced diet, snack on fruit when I get a “sweet tooth” craving, drink water when my mind tells me I am hungry but my stomach says I am full, and I will not put off going to the gym because of homework, TV, computer, or church.

Once I have changed the habits that prey on my health, then I will transform into a healthier young woman; then I will be truly free.

My parents are encouraging these changes. My mom is trying to lose weight too. It is a lot easier when you have someone else to go through it with you.

There is a long way to go with this. It is not going to be easy.

Just tonight, I was tempted to snack on some left over pizza. Instead, I reached further back into the fridge and grabbed a water instead.

I may not have done so well on my first day, but I am determined to respect my body and hopefully inspire others to do the same.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Personal Monday: Faith, Music, Segways, Trips to the Doctor's Office, and More

Now Listening to: Spamalot (I know it’s dirty in parts, but I can’t help but enjoy it, the music’s so hilarious. I don’t mind the gay stuff because it makes fun of gay men, not that I would ever make fun of them myself. Plus, we all know Lancelot will leave the prince for Guinevere.)

I have way too much to talk about today! I don’t know how I’ll remember everything. So stick with me on this. It’s going to be a long post.

I got up early this morning (around 3:30 AM) to go lay in my front yard with my dad to watch the stars. Why so early in the morning you ask? Because that is the best time to watch a meteor shower and reflect on God's glory while doing so. It was amazing. There was a about one meteor per minute for an hour straight. Most of them weren't very bright, but every once in a while there were some real good ones! I love watching the stars and listening to the crickets! It's my favorite activity other than going out in the morning to sit and read in the park and to watch the sun rise.

I’ve started reading my Bible every morning and it’s helping me keep a positive outlook throughout my days. I am reading Proverbs and Jeremiah right now. If anyone has any favorite passages, feel free to post them as comments. You have no idea how much of a difference it makes reading your Bible every morning until you actually start doing it.

The Bible says to meditate on God’s word daily.

Joshua 1:8
Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.

Psalm 1:2
But his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night.

Psalm 119:27
Let me understand the teaching of your precepts; then I will meditate on your wonders.

I don’t often pay attention to verses like these. I can be lazy that way. I find that I only read my Bible when I’m on an emotional high peak. I want to change this. I know God wants me to spend more time with Him during good and depressing/stressful times.

Two recent events sparked these thoughts in my mind. First, I have spent a lot of time worrying about college lately. I didn’t want a roommate, but I got one. I have no transportation, so I am worried about that. I worry about making friends, doing well in classes, and getting a job. I cried and whined about all of these things and then I woke up and realized I cannot snap my fingers and make my problems go away. Neither will God snap His fingers and make things better; I must wait on Him. In His own timing, He will answer my prayers, and He won’t always answer them the way I want them answered. He knows what I need and will provide that much. I must put my faith in Him and count on His own good timing and purpose. I plan on posting a short devotional that expands on what I’ve learned from this some time in the future.

Second, some family friends came through town the other day and I had lunch with them. They were very encouraging and one of them kept telling me I should start memorizing scripture. I find that the few times I see them during the year they lift me up spiritually. They live out their faith. I look up to them as role models. Talking about college with them got me thinking about how much faith I really put in God. I need to trust God more with my life and pray more often from my heart, not just out of selfish wants and desires. I selfishly want my own dorm room and I selfishly want some reliable mode of transportation for college.

I have found partial solutions to some of the things that have been stressing lately. Have you ever heard of a Segway? It’s a battery powered transportation vehicle that goes about 12 miles per hour and can be used on sidewalks (I’ve included a picture of one). It seems a good option for transportation during college, but comes with a large price tag (anywhere from $2,000 to $5,000). On the bright side, it saves money compared to a car (I have yet to get a driver’s license – speaking of which, I’m very nervous about my driving test this Thursday seeing as how I haven’t practiced much). Still, I have a feeling that I don’t need a segway. I sure want one, but do I really need one. You still get exercise. You have way more fun. But I just have a feeling that I am being selfish in wanting and asking for one. I don’t want to let the segway control me. On the other hand, it might help me get a sign twisting job for a place like Little Caesars’s.

Transferring to a new college requires an even more stressful, time consuming health evaluation that I have been working on with my doctor all summer. Today I got a TB shot and will have it tested on Wednesday. This is my third shot this summer (I also got Hepatitis A and Whooping Cough shots) on top of numerous needles piercing my skin to take my blood for tests. Not that it hurts any. The only hurt came when I got a week long fever from the Whooping Cough shot. It’s just a lot of hassle in a short time. I should have had my health form in to my college long ago, but now I have to wait until I get there to turn it in.

I must have been to the doctor’s office at least ten times in the last few months (I might be exaggerating a little). The worse part of going to the doctor’s office for me is talking about my weight. They just love to lecture you. Luckily, I’ve been doing fairly well. I’ve lost a pound a week, going for about six pounds total this summer. Eating healthier and eating smaller portions isn’t easy, I’ve splurged one too many times, but I seem to lose weight anyway. Not a lot, mind you. Besides, once college starts up I’m sure I’ll gain the freshman 4-15 or whatever it’s called when you gain weight from all the cafeteria food. I do want to become healthier. I want to represent God well with my body. It also helps not being fat if you want a segway (a segway can only hold 300 pounds max, which I’m pretty close to). From what I’ve read, if I get one I’ll get a rude remark from time to time (“Walking’s Healthier!” – But segways do take a lot of exercise; plus they’re certainly healthier than driving a car). I won’t worry about that right now, though. I know I can handle one. I took a tour of Angel Island on one last Friday and had a great time. Besides, I am slowing learning to take things day by day and to not become anxious about the future.

On one last note, I’d just like to recommend a couple of movies. First, “Fat Like Me.” It’s a Lifetime TV Channel Original Film about a skinny girl who wears a fat suit to see what it’s like to be fat. She finds that it’s a lot harder than it sounds. People make fun of her and treat her like an animal or monster when she’s in the fat suit. It’s a good movie, although I did not like the ending. The only way I know of to get it is through itunes, but I’m sure there are other ways.

The second film I wanted to recommend is “Hairspray” is still in theatres. I loved this film. It’s taken me way too long to get around to posting on it. It’s about a big girl making her dreams come true despite her size. The only problem I have with plots like these is that the obese characters show pride in their size. I see no problem in showing pride in who you are and what your abilities are, but I do not think it right to take pride in your size when you should make every effort you can to be as healthy as you can. I do have one short complaint about “Hairspray” and that is that the main character’s mother is played by a man, John Travolta. The scenes with the mother and father made me smile and laugh, but then I would remember that the mother was a man in a fat suit and I could not enjoy it any more. I find cross dressing just disgusting. I won’t judge those who choose that lifestyle, but I will never support the lifestyle itself along with the homosexual, bisexual, and sex change life styles.

Just to show you how long it took me to write this post, I am now half way through the soundtrack to “The Pirate Queen.” It has some nice songs, but the show was boring and lacked character development. You don’t feel attached to the characters when you should (rather like the movie “Eragon”). Still, it’s a good soundtrack with a good cast, even if it is too similar to “Les Miserables.”

Saturday, August 11, 2007

New Blog

I've started a new blog called Confab Remarks at

Here's a Description:

Confab: A casual talk; confabulation. To engage in casual talk.

Remark: To say casually, as in making a comment. to note; perceive; observe. comment or mention. a casual or brief expression of thought or opinion.

Welcome to Confab Remarks!!! This blog is where I will post all the blogs I read and my comments on their posts. In a way, it's a tip page. In another way, it's a page for discussion. Please join me in the world of blogging!

Consuming Technology

An article on from the AP states that there is a battle going on between HD DVD players and Blue-Ray Discs. Consumers are urged to pick sides, because one or the other will come out on the top and regular DVDs will be fogotten forever, just like VHSs. Is it just me, or are we way too consumed by technology today? I mean, there are so many different new technologies coming out I get completely confused. What is HD TV and such? Etc Etc Etc!!! It seems like it was just yesterday they came out with DVDs, and now this. I have a large DVD library (more than I should have. I think buying movies and music is my weakness I need to learn to control). I used to have a large VHS library. Honestly folks, I think all they want is your money. They'll just keep coming out with more and more new technology and you'll keep throwing out the old technology and replacing it with the new technology. What do you think?

To read the AP article, click here.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Entertainment Friday: Articles and Movie News

Christian Features

Interesting Christian News
Trinity Broadcasting Network (TBN) acquired the Holy Land Experience theme park in Orlando, Florida. Attendance at the Holy Land Experience has slumped since the park opened in 2001. tbn hopes to boost attendance by promoting the park through its extensive television network. tbn also plans to reverse policies that banned Pentecostals from working in the park.
Do you think this is crazy? Part of me wants to say this is a silly way to create another fad and go with the worldly way of things, but most of me wants to say this is another opportunity to witness to others. What do you think?

Christian Articles of the Week
On Not Transforming the World

Some Interesting News Articles

Laura Bush is writing a children’s book.

Luciano Pavarotti in Hospital


Hollywood Remakes of Old Cartoons
Hollywood is getting into a habit of making remake films of old cartoons. Here are some links that might interest you.

Speed Racer

Johnny Quest

Spider Man the Musical
While another late Hollywood trend has been to turn musicals into movies, we now find that they are considering turning movies into musicals. I’ve heard rumors of an “Ever After” Musical, a Spider Man musical is now in the works.

The Little Mermaid
Disney is also in the process of turning “The Little Mermaid” into a musical. It comes out this winter.

Other Movie News – Jack Black’s New Film
This film just reminds me of a Nickelodeon’s All That sketch, but looks good. It’s called “Be Kind, Rewind.”

Pink Panther
In other news, they’re making a Pink Panther sequel. This is ridiculous considering how horribly stupid and boring the first remake was.

Fahrenheit 451 Remake Starring Tom Hanks

Snowyville – Another Christmas Movie – Starring Tim Curry

Monopoly Board Game the Movie

The Other Boleyn Girl