Monday, December 10, 2007



I use the word "priorities" more often than I use it's singular form: priority. You wouldn't think it, but the words really have two different meanings. Priority means "highest in importance." There can't be more than one thing that is highest in importance. So we use the word Priorities to mean "important things."

Priority, when made plural, loses its meaning.

I should have but one priority.

Psalm 27:4
One thing I ask, and this one thing I seek;
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord
and seek him in his temple.

One. Singular. Thing.



scars and secrets


There are two pieces of information that I request from him on a nearly bi-monthly basis. One I request right before he falls asleep, in hopes that delirium might make him uninhibited. I pull the blanket over our heads and say, "Tell me your secrets."

So far, I haven't asked him at just the right moment before sleep, because he always responds with, "Joy, I don't have any secrets. I've already told you all of them." One time I told him just to make some up, which he did. They were all either boring or unbelievable. I fell asleep unsatisfied.

My other favorite thing to ask him is where the scars on his hands are from. I usually notice them at the dinner table, and I find them personal, endearing, and manly. One is from the time he jumped off the stage at high school and caught his hand on a music stand. Another is from his watch when it got pulled in a game of football. He can't remember what the other three are from, but I keep asking him in case he suddenly remembers.

I have a feeling they are from a secret government mission that he has yet to tell me about.


end of the month starvation


I haven't quite figured out our food budget. Actually, I have figured out our food budget, but I haven't really implemented my knowledge and made the right decisions. As a result, we tend to eat steak and asparagus at the beginning of the month, and bagels with peanut butter at the end of the month. My body seems to be adjusting to this cycle.

It's not that there isn't money in the spending account, in the gas account, the savings account, one of the other 11 "accounts" we have arranged on a spreadsheet. It's a matter of discipline, of principle. With the right amount of planning, I can make substantial meals for one month on the budget we determined.

In my world, "giving up" looks like an extra bottle of peanut butter in my shopping cart. I currently have two in the pantry.


ordinary days



Like the inflection in a newscaster's voice.


Like the wall color of a new condominium.


Like a story from Chicken Soup for the Cat Lover's Soul.


Like every movement under the sun.


I don't know where, I don't know why, I don't know how
But your love can make these things better.

- Jars of Clay




I've discovered that I can only use the word accomplished in a singular situation. "I have accomplished my goal to finish my school assignment due today." I never actually feel accomplished, in a global sense. There is always something else to be done. No matter how satisfied my brain feels as it drifts off to sleep, it awakes the next morning with a whole new set of goals. I can make lists and I can check items off. But I am never accomplished.

I think about how writers or other professionals are often deemed "accomplished." I wonder if any of them, at the end of their career actually feel like they got it all done. I suppose it comes down to knowing your purpose. But how do you put a limit on your purpose? There has to be a limit if it's going to be realized.

Even when Jesus said, "it is finished," he didn't mean all of it. I guess in a sense, he did: salvation is here, it's done. But he wasn't FINISHED finished. He sent his spirit so that we could continue the work and join in on the story that is still unfolding.

I find rest in the fact that eternity is written on the hearts of man.

I don't think I'll ever feel entirely accomplished. I think that is because I was made for eternity.