Tuesday, January 30, 2007

My heart and other side notes

So today has been one of those days. One of those days when your journal is never close enough and all you want to do is curl up on your couch and stare at the wall, contemplating the thousands of mixed feelings running through your head. It is in these moments that I see God really working in my heart, teaching me to listen to Him, molding me into His image, letting me feel the helplessness and complete lostness that I am without Him. I have counseled girls for years on emotional integrity and trusting God with your heart. I boldly proclaimed that I trusted Him, that I had given Him my heart. But I didn't and I hadn't. Not completely at least. It's interesting that I wouldn't have known this about myself if I hadn't experienced the pain God let me walk through this last year. And now I am left with the question: will I put my trust in my Lord? Will I really surrender my heart to Him? I don't mean just trusting Him by knowing that He will provide. I am talking about being vulnerable with Him, letting Him take my heart in His hands and do with it as He pleases. It is really scary. I don't like vulnerability. I have been taught to build barriers. To construct walls around me that keep out pain. Unfortunately, my walls have never been think enough, never strong enough. I have hurt and wept and sworn to never let anyone in again. And yet, that is not the answer, is it? The answer lies not in the denial of everyone, but the invitation of One. I am not saying that I am there yet. I am not ready to really surrender, but I don't know that we ever really do. But for today, for this moment, I at least pray that I surrender. I want to be wall free. I don't want to protect my heart from Him.

Jews, Charismatic Gifts, and Ice Cream

My friend Sam sent out an email yesterday to a group of his friends proposing a get together before everyone leaves for summer vacations in February. One our friends suggested a dessert night. So last night we all got together in one of the homes and gathered around a table covered in ice cream, brownies, rice krispie treats, mms, and pie. I felt like a little kid. We all passed the different platters around as if they were normal dinner dishes. Like a 4 year olds.
There were about 10 of us and we sat around eating sweets and talking. One of the guys there, Esteban, was particularly interesting to me. I met him months ago but I have never really talked to him. I went to his church on sunday and heard that he was interested in Jews, or at least had a bunch of Jewish friends. There aren't too many Jews down here so to hear this surprised me. Last night I found out that he actually knows quite a bit about Jewish life and culture. Our conversation also covered my other favorite issues of charasmatic church and the appropriate use of Spiritual gifts within a church body. Needless to say, I highly enjoyed the night. It is mind blowing to me that just over a year ago, I didn't know any christians and I was wondering how I was going to survive in this country without a church family. God is good. He does provide.

Saturday, January 27, 2007

Chess

When I was nine years old I was in the chess club at school (and I still wonder why I was never cool). Recently while on the cruise I played a few times and was reminded just how much I really like the game. So today I bought a chess set. Now I just need to find someone to play with me...

Friday, January 26, 2007

what this woman needs

I thought I would share with you the lyrics to the song I have put on repeat...

This woman who takes on the world
And picks up your shirts, keeps it together somehow
This same woman that melts with your touch
Wants you to feel what Im feeling right now
(chorus)cause this woman needs
A safe place to land
The strength in your hands
To know you know
What this woman needs
Is somewhere to cry
So lay by my side
And Ill tell you, Ill tell you
This woman needs to be reassured
That my hearts your home,
and love is what wills you to stay
I need you to see me in every light
And hear that you still think Im beautiful anyway

-SheDaisy

Death, my gain

The air seems to be filled with death. Within the last two weeks, I have received the news of three deaths. The first came two weeks ago. My friend Alister's dad died. He was a godly man who served the church for years and raised godly children who will continue that rich hertitage. Then I got an email telling me that my childhood friend Josh had died (see the previous blog). And then not more than 12 hours later I found out that my friend Eduardo's sister died in a horrible car accident. She was 25. So I went to her funeral today in Valparaiso. I wasn't going to go. I didn't want to intrude. But I went. I got a call from Sam this morning offering a ride, but that they were leaving right away. And I said yes. I went to this funeral and sat in the large dark church listening to the priest chant away, and thinking about my friend Eduardo. I couldn't imagine, or I didn't want to. If my sister...
I have been reading a book that Rach sent to me by Anne Lamott called Traveling Mercies. It is good, and not my typical book. It is refreshingly open adn a bit vulgar, and I'm addicted to reading it. I have covered 200 pages in two days. It reminds me of Jane Austen and Donald Miller. I read it and am left with a running internal commentary. I am sentimental, over analyzing, and annoyingly aware of every little detail in life. I am captured by every flower I pass by, I hear background noise that no one else seems to notice, every person seems so much more alive. More vibrant. And every pain in the world seems to fall on my head. And I will spend the next few days in this state of living poetry until work catches up with me and I silence the voice in my head. It tells me to walk slower. To breate deeper. To just sit.
I came home from the funeral and pulled out a new journal. It is a really nice jounral that Carleigh gave me for my birthday two years ago. I haven't used it because it always seemed too nice to write in. Today I wrote in it. I wrote for an hour and cried. I cried for Eduardo and the loss in his life. I cried for Josh's family. I cried for the irony in life. That things are rarely what we think they are, and usually end so differently than we want. And I cried over the loss of hope. And yet, I haven't felt any despair. I am sad though. And the sadness will pass. The Lord will restore joy. In fact, in the sadness, I still see the joy. I know my Redeeemer lives. I know that He is in control. Eduardo's sister, I don't think she had a relationship with the Lord. I don't think she had placed her trust in Him. And I don't know what God does in people's hearts as they are dying. But I know that our faith must be in the Lord and His sacrifice. Our own dealings and tryings in life amount to nothing in the end. And we choose in this life how we will spend all of eternity. I know I am stepping on toes, and some of you hate to be preached to, but you KNOW that I am a Christian. And if you are reading this blog, you seem to have some interest i who I am or what I think. Well there you go. I am a Christian. All my identity is wrapped up in Him. All my hope, all my dreams, every ounce of who I am, every fear quenched, all doubt aside, I am a follower of Christ.
If I die, please know that I died in peace. That my Lord decided to take me home to Him. Please sing at my funeral, loud. Sing How deep the Father's love for us. Please laugh. Tell stories. Please, worship the Lord for the amazing God He is. You may think I am being morbid here, okay. But in the end, when we leave the funerals, we go on with our lives. We drink coffee, we watch movies, we meet friends at parks to watch the sunset. We live.

"And I pray this, that your love may abound still more and more in real knowledge and all discernment so that you may approve the things that are excellent in order to be sincere and blameless until the day of Christ...
...according to my earnest expectation and hope that I will not be put to shame in anything, but that with all boldness, Christ will even now, as always, be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain. "
-The apostle Paul writing to his friends in Philippi(1:9-10, 20-21)

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

This one is for you Josh

Dear Josh,
You will never read this blog. Never recieve a letter from me. Never get that phone call. You have finally joined our Savior in Heaven after faithfully serving Him for over 20 years. Josh, I don't think i have seen you for at least 4 or 5 years. I haven't been a good friend. But you have stuck with me all this time. Your example of faith and love for the Lord was monumental in my life and I will carry your memory with me forever. One of my earliest memories is with you. I was staying at your house with you and Mike. We were being babysat by some girl, who knows who. And you and Mike changed clothes. You wore his red pajamas and Mike put on your blue ones. And what a laugh we got out of the confusion. Rebekah Wertheim and I used to argue about who would tell you apart better. I never won. But Josh, I remember. I don't remember when you first were diagnosed with cancer, but I remember how skinny you got from all your chemotherapy, and how light your hair was when it fianlly grew back in. And I remember the party we had for you when you finished your chemothearpy. I remember Vera and her frienship with you and her great admiration for your family. I remember hearing about your heart failure. I remember I was at HQ and sitting in the Multipurpose room. I remember going to the bathroom and crying. I knew the Lord had blessed you with the strength to go through this, but I thought it was so unfair. Hadn't you been through enough? I remember hearing about your family. How you worried about your parents and Mike, and they in return worried about you. And it impressed me so deeply, the love your family radiated for each other and for the Lord. I remember. I remember how after so many years of your skinniness, you came back to Ingathering chubby from the medication they gave you for your heart. I remember a letter I wrote and never sent to the family of the girl whose heart you were given, thanking them. I remember your faith Josh. I remember you. I have told others about you and your family. You will never know what encouragement you have been to others, who you won't meet here in this life. But Josh, your love for the Lord was, is, and always will be obvious to me. You radiated it. And I thank you for that. I remember you Josh, and I always will.

"Only be strong and very courageous, be careful to do according to all the law which Moses My servant commanded you, do not turn from it to the right or to the left, so that you may have success wherever you go." Joshua 1:7

To Joshua Rubin, died this week

Sunday, January 21, 2007


Here is a pic of Seba and I in front of my apartment. You can really tell, but I am wearing the dress I bought the other day (see my previous blog about materialism)

Thursday, January 18, 2007

ramblings

Today I hung out with Kallie's grandparents who are in Chile for the week. I took them all around Santa Lucia, Bellas Artes, and Bellavista, and then they took me to lunch. And I have to tell you, I hope I am like them when I am their age. they are in their 70's and trekking around the world. Really cool people.
I was a little sick last night, just a fever and soreness. I don't know why I feel the need to share that with you all. I am just in a fairly random mood and feel like writing whatever I want. On that note, I have been thinking about somethings. Like our emotions and how silly and yet deep they seem. And the fact that we can't seem to control them. And yet we can't always live by them.
I have also been thinking about how I always said I want this or that kind of life. And recently, maybe out of boredom more than anything else, I have decided to just go ahead and start living it. I am tired of waiting for my life to begin. I am tired of standing by as time flies in front of me. I am so young. I can do so much. And yet something seems to hold me back. I seem to doubt my ability to live that life that I want. Or maybe I'm just scared to. Okay, I'm feeling feverish again, so I better stop writing.
May you all see art in everything you do. May you truly feel the blessing the Lord has given us in this life... to know Him.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

TAG!

So I have been tagged by Kallie (I swear this feels like a chain letter thing, oh well!). I have to share 5 little known facts about me... hmmm... considering the fact that I am generally an open book, this is a difficult task.
1. I want to get married. Oh wait! Just joking, everyone who has spent more than 5 minutes talking to me or has read this blog knows this all too well. What you don't know is that one of my deepest fears is loving someone so much and then them dying. I think I realized it a year or two ago, but I really get scared at the thought of going through that type of pain.
2. On a lighter note. I drooled all over my sister when I was nine and I had gotten my tonsils out. She still holds it against me.
3. Some of you know this... When I was at Cal Poly, I used to walk around campus talking, or really praying, on my cell phone. I would put it on silent and then put it up to my ear. I know it sounds horribly nerdy, but really folks, try it. I had some of my best conversations with God that way. (And no, He doesn't audibly answer. )
4. My mom calls me "Mooki". I am not sure where the name came from (and I'm not sure how to spell it), but it has been my nickname since I was little. And I love it.
5. hmmm... what should my last one be? When I was younger, my favorite music was "The Judds". In fact, they were the first concert I ever went to. And so began my secret love for country music.

There you go Kallie. Now I get to tag people. I tag Rachie and Keith. And if Ashlee and Danielle ever into the blogging business, you guys are up for a tag too!

Monday, January 15, 2007

material girl

Seba (a new friend I have been spending a ton of time with) asked me the other day what my favorite color is. He likes to psychoanalyze people and I like to have people psychoanalyze me, so it workds out pretty well. So he asked about my favorite color and I couldn't give hima straight answer. I said, when i am felling girly I like pink, when i am feeling hippy I like green (or when I think of Rachie), when I am feeling poetic I like deep blues and purples, and I love the brown in my eyes, I also admit that yellow and orange are my favorite when it is fall and the leaves are those colors. But then again, there is always red and white which make me feel hyper. So basically, I couldn't asnwer that question. And then he asked if I liked grey, and I thought about it... no. He told me that grey is the neutral color and basically I have just shown that I am not neutral in ANYTHING. That is probably one of the best psycholanalysis' I have ever had done on me.
So then today I went shopping. I have been in a fairly anti-materialistic mood recently, getting mad at peoples' obsessions with money, and making fun of how concerned we are with fitting into our cultures image of what is cool. But after my boss showed my schedule for this next year and told me that I need to dress professionally... humf, I guess that means shopping (I am not really THAT upset). So i went shopping today after my class and found some really good sales with some clothes that are professional, and yet still ahve some personality to them. And then I found this dress. I don't even know why I tried it on. It isn't anything I can wear to work, and I don't usually wear dresses just for fun, but I tried it on anyways and sat in the dressing room, not wanting to take it off. It is a light green emperor cut, and yet greek style dress... just nice enough for a date (cuz I go on SO many of those!), and yet almost hippy in its simplicity. So I was thinking, how can I spout off all this disdain for materialism and then find so much pleasure in a dress. And I think the balance comes in finding what makes you happy, ,what makes you feel good, what makes you feel pretty, and then enoying those things, but not getting so caught up in them that you have to buy your happiness. Finding pleasure in walking down the sidewalk that is lined with trees, in little babies laughter, in an eldery couple holding hands as they sit on a park bench... and in dresses that make you feel like a princess. So there you go.
I ended up buying the dress (it was on sale for $15) and although I know I won't wear it too often, I really really like it. So yeah. It's something my mom calls shopping therapy.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

disclaimers

I was recently talking to a fellow blogger about what it is like to blog. Now, for those of you who think blogging is easy, maybe you have never tried it. I am not talking about the pressure to use perfect grammar or spelling in a blog (we all know that I don't care about those things). I am talking about the pressure of writing to a diverse audience, and not just any audience, but a personal one. Some blogs are thoughts, but not necessarily personal thoughts. They might be the person's political, social, or even religous thoughts. But when you write a blog about your personal thoughts, like what is going on in your life, what you are experiencing, who you are meeting, that is when things get complicated. I can longer really write about what I think without the fear of hurting someone. (Does that mean that my real thoughts are hurtful? hmmm)
This blog started off for my family adn close friends to know how I am doing down here. And if you are reading this and you aren't one of those family or close friends that the blog was originally intended for, that's okay. I'm glad you are here. I don't think you'll find anything of much interest in what I have to say. But I have to confess that I am finding it harder to be real in my blog. Part of me says, what the heck, write whatever you want to write and don't take into account who is reading it. But I know that I could never do that. So I am left writing blogs that to me seem distant, ambiguous, boring. The fact that in the previous blog i felt the need to place a disclaimer half way through it shows that I am not free to say whatever I want. So I will try, for the sake of my own desire to be as transparent as possible, to be real adn honest in this blog. To tell you, the reader, what is actually going on. Even if that means exposing my heart a little more than I usually like to. I refuse to write my blogs about just my daily habits (ex. "I went to the supermarket today"). The point of this blog was established long ago, it is to be about my moments with Jesus on this adventure we call life, and that is what I will write about.

Rantings on a sunday

Today is Sunday, which means church. I went to church today and was greeted by friends I hadn't seen in quite sometime, and I sang beautiful hymns, and I heard a fairly good sermon about (what a surprise!) the Gospel. And then, like I have wanted for so long, I hung out with the people in my church. We went to lunch and then to one of the guys houses where we watched the Simpsons and played a board game. It was a group of about 12 of us. And it is what I have wanted to see happen for so long. Disclaimer: if you are a part of my church and you are reading this, which there is one person in particular I am thinking of, please don't take this blog too seriously, it is just some thoughts. I say that because I left the group kind of sad. I am not sure why. I am not sure if I was feeling lonliness, or helplessness, or sentimental, or hormonal, or all of the above. But I left the group sad. I saw the Lord bless me today and I felt sad. Odd, isn't it? I have been feeling a lot of different emotions recently, and I have not had my gringas here to listen to my rantings. Come back gringas!

Friday, January 12, 2007

My trip

So I am finally sitting down to write about my trip. I'm sorry this blog has taken so long but the business of coming home after a three week trip is large and ugly, so that had to be started before I could really sit down at ease and write. Our trip was amazing. Mom and Nigel met me in Buenos Aires as planned. We met at teh national airport where we would have just an hour or two to catch our next flight to Ushuaia. The argentinians wanted to give us a taste of their culture and did so by delaying the flight, changing the boarding gate, and then not telling us really what was going on. You have to love those argentinians!
We arrived in Ushuaia late and saved our sight seeing for the next day. That next morning after checking in with the boat, we walked around town and enjoyed some yummy comida agentina. Then we boarded. I ahve to say, I never imagined that I would love living on a boat. I actualyl found the sea quite calming. Even the hard parts were relazing to me; others were not so happy with this part of the trip.
Each day on board we had two expeditions. The expeditions ranged from visiting Cape Horn, to glacier seeing, to the penguin colony. I have to admit that I am now absolutly in love with penguins. I think they might be one of the most entertaining animals out there. Each day, we also had the chance to go to a lecture about the history of the area or the nature that we would be seeing later in an expedition. I chose to go to lectures in spanish. THe hwole trip was awesome.
One of the nest parts was the people we met on board. The crew was so nicec and really impressed with my spanish. After the trip some of them gave em their emails and told me that anytime I came down to the south, I should stay with them. The other passengers were also amazing. There was a group of about 12 youth on board and we all sat around, talking, laughing, singing kareoke, playing chess (I beat all of the other youth!), and of course- taking advantage of the open bar. My favorite drink was this champagne with raspberry flavoring, very nice. Teh sun didn't set until midnight and it rose as early as 3 or 4 in the morning, it had almost a Las Vegas effect where I couldn't tell you if it was late in the evening or not.
When we got off board, we drove out to a city called Puerta Natales, where my mom and Nigel left me for a few days as they drove up to Torres del Paine. I took advantage of my free day and spent the day hiking in some caves nearby, and reading my bible. It was nice and relaxing.
We then headed up to Santiago on a plane and drove right out to a town called Zapallar. it is a small beach town where the richest of Santiago own their summer houses. The walk along the beach the next morning was beautiful, the walkway along the shore was lined with little sculptures.
We then headed up to La Serena where we found out that we had double booked hotels there. We choose the one nearest the lighthouse and found a reastaurant to celebrate the New Year. Teh year was brought in with a 20 minute firework show, and then, being party animals, we went to bed. The next day, after a quick visit to my old spanish professor's house (Mr. Fagan from Cal Poly) we headed out to Valle de Elqui, one of my favorite places in the world. Mom and Nigel really liked it too. it seems to have an energy to it, but at the same time, it is so calming.
The next day we chilled in La Serena, downtown where I used to live. We saw the James Bond Movie, and went out to dinner at a pizzeria. Mom and Nigel went back to the hotel to sleep, and I headed to the old kareoke bar with my host mom adn sister. I got home at a nice 4am.
We were leaving for the central coast the next morning, but had to reevaluate our plans since mom got really sick. Then, Nigel got sick. We made it down to Horcon, but found the rental apartment a bit lacking. So after a day, we packed up adn headed to Viña del Mar. We stayed there for a few days and then after a visit to Pablo Nerudas house Isla Negra, my mom and Nigel headed to Santa Cruz (the wine country down here) and I headed to Santiago.
I met back up with them a few days later in Santiago and showed them my city. They really liked Santiago. My mom especially liked Bellas Artes (where I work) and Bellavista (where I will be spending a lot of time). Both she and Nigel agreed that Providencia where I love, is a very nice area. And my mom even went as far as to say that she thinks I should stay in Santiago and that it is one of the best cities she has visited. Thanks mom.
After some nice meals, good shopping, and good coffee talks, my mom and I hugged goodbye and she and Nigel got in a taxi and left me. It was an amazing trip and I am glad to say that my mom now knows and understands my love for this country.

Monday, January 08, 2007

some phone calls

So I am back in Santiago, but I still think of myself on vacation. My mom and Nigel are meeting me here in Santiago today and we will continue our sightseeing. Yesterday I was supposed to go to this Youth Leadership camp, but it didn't work out, so I stayed home. Well, after church I went to TGI Fridays (yes, just like in gringolandia) with Seba. Then got home to make some long overdue home calls. I talked to Danielle for a while. I am so excited for her to come out. Seriously, you know those people who just seem to get you? She's it for me. I am so looking forward to this upcoming year with her here. Then I spent some time translating my resume into spanish, eh. Then After a sweet refreshing phone call with Kallie, I met up with some other friends, ran some errands, and ended the day with an AMAZING call (about 4 1/2 hours) with the one and only chubs. She is finally back from Thailand and I haven't talked to her since August. She is one of the people I trust most in the world and when things get hard in life, she is the one I call, so not having her around for so long, was pretty harsh. But over 4 hours of talking felt good. Now its off to the post office to pick up a package.. hmmm.. could it be from a certain green loving friend? We need to talk, my green loving friend, I have missed you. And then, hopefully I will have time to send out my resume, go apartment hunting, and write out a good long blog about my trip, all before 4pm when my mom and Nigel arrive.
Mucho cariño a todos,
Becka

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Years

This will have to be really short since we are running out the door to Valle de Elqui right now, but I wanted to wish all of you a very big HAPPY NEW YEARS!!!!
2006 is done and we get a fresh start with 2007... woo hoo!
God bless!

PS- I promise once I am back and everything is normal, I will post for real, with fotos and all.