Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Why am I not busy?

I've been meaning to post an update on here for the past three days, but only now did I remember to keep my computer on me in order to accomplish it. I'm sitting in a cafeteria, surrounded by the noon-time crowd. My table is currently empty, which has been the norm so far. I don't mind so much, because it gives me an opportunity to catch up with the happy little messages on my phone. I find it interesting that everyone who I spent time with on a regular basis this time two years ago is now spread out, living all over the state. The drives between us are growing, and at the same time I find it easier to communicate. This must be what all this social media was made for. It hardly feels like I've moved an hour away from my home (and twice that distance from the others who have left) when it's so very easy to send a quick hello or even engage in a substantial conversation with just the push of a button.

It took quite a few things to ease my heart into leaving home. First of all, the promise that I could still return whenever I needed to. Second, of course, the companionship of technology's ability to keep me connected with the friends and family (and friends who have become family) that I love so much.
But more than anything, I was encouraged by the knowledge and continual assurance that this is where God wants me. I rest at night knowing that I am where I need to be. I don't think that there is any way that I could have come here if I didn't know that.

There is always that whisper of doubt, though. Not a doubt in God's sovereignty, but a doubt in my ability to discern His will. I've never been wholly sure of myself, but I've learned recently that if I do make a mistake and choose the wrong way, there is nothing that can happen that the Lord cannot redeem. No matter how distorted the path that I could choose, He is always there to pick me back up and lead me. I couldn't have made this journey without something absolute and sound and infallible to place my faith in. God has always been that, and if He did lead me here, then I have nothing to worry for.

I'm sure that as the days pass, my lunch table will no longer be empty, and the time between classes will no longer be dull and quiet. For now, that is how it is. I'm at peace, because my mere presence in this place is a reminder of all that God has done for me to get me here. He has opened and closed many doors, and taken care of everything that burdened me. I have no doubt in His faithfulness or His promise to always take care of me.

Now, to my precious friends either still at home or off on their own schooling adventures, I offer this little word that was given to me and fuels my spirit:

Remember who you are.




It started out as a feeling
Which then grew into a hope
Which then turned into a quiet thought
Which then turned into a quiet word
And then that word grew louder and louder
'Til it was a battle cry
I'll come back when you call me
No need to say goodbye

Just because everything's changing
Doesn't mean it's never been this way before
All you can do is try to know who your friends are
As you head off to the war
Pick a star on the dark horizon and follow the light
You'll come back when it's over
No need to say goodbye
You'll come back when it's over
No need to say goodbye

Now we're back to the beginning
It's just a feeling and no one knows yet
But just because they can't feel it too
Doesn't mean that you have to forget
Let your memories grow stronger and stronger
'Til they're before your eyes
You'll come back when they call you
No need to say goodbye
You'll come back when they call you
No need to say goodbye

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Hope That Goes Unseen

“For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies. For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with patience.”
Romans 8:18-25 ESV

            Here I wait, with patience, for something infinitely greater than anything that I could ever know here. If anything, I have spent my life desperately chasing after faint tastes of what is to come. In my wildest dreams on this groaning planet, I can only hope for the shadow of the cloud of His glory. Only an echo of Heaven’s chorus has ever been heard: only the chance of singing in unity and agreement with the never ending songs of the angels.

            But there is something greater, and it is coming. Everything that we are here is preparation for that eternal home. We are not yet home, but inwardly we long and yearn to walk upon its shores. The greatest stories told among us are re-tellings of our journey there, of our longing for home. Once we become aware of this, our innermost heart’s cry, we can allow these hopes and desires to flow out of us and resonate with the whole of creation.


            My heart is stirred from its numbed slumber at the most subtle mention of the country that I will call home. Nostalgia for a place that I have never been echoes in songs and words, and my heart is overwhelmed with joy and a holy sadness. All I have for now are stories, told by others who know of what is to come. And I, in turn, tell stories that overflow from the hope that swells in my heart. Together, as story tellers, we rejoice in the hope of what we do not yet see. We wait with patience for what we know is coming. We are almost home. 


~Heather Rose

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Music from a Garden



My, I've been absent from this blog for a while!
I suppose it's because I've always reserved this blog for essays and book reviews and things of that nature that aren't so personal, and in the past few months life has been pretty full of personal events. Perhaps I'll take some time to blog about all the changes and new things one day, but for the meantime I have a band that I'd love to introduce you to...

The Gray Havens.

The first song that I heard from them was Silver:
When I first heard it, I just thought "Hey, this is a cool song."
But then I read the Warden and the Wolf King, and this song matches the plot surprisingly well. That makes this one of my favorite songs of all time, because the WatWK is my favorite book.
(Can anyone who has read it attest to the similarities?)

This week I finally bought their EP, Where Eyes Don't Go.  I was hoping for another narrative song or two, and was delighted to find that pretty much the whole thing is consisted of folky stories. I love it so much. I feel like these people understand the basic truth that I hold to about the imminent coming of a new home and the nostalgia for that place which we've never yet known. Almost all of the six songs on this EP follow that theme. My favorite by far is Music From a Garden:


I suspect that they took some of their inspiration from The Magician's Nephew (which makes them about 1000 times cooler.) I am simply in love with this song. It's one of the first that I've heard that narrates the creation with an upbeat rhythm, and a chorus that emphasizes an internal connection with the "long forgotten song" to help us put it all into perspective.

I love that they refer to the Trinity as the Dove, the Lion, and the Composer. It's a beautiful picture of the mystery and order that we take so much time trying to analyze. The lines about the Lion speaking combined with the super fun beat bring images to my mind of Aslan roaring Narnia to life (which stirs my soul).

Over all, I fully resonate with that longing and yearning for the Garden to return. As the chorus goes:

I'm still dancing to the music from a garden,
That was so much brighter then,
With the echoes from a long forgotten song,
Escaping from my lungs within,
And you can hear the movement through,
Thee overture that's playing if you listen to the end,
Because the dove and the composer will be dancing,
When the Lion comes again

Just this morning I was reading in Romans 8, and it talks about this very same thing:

    "For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us. For the creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the sons of God. For the creation was subjected to futility, not willingly, but because of him who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be set free from its bondage to corruption and obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God. For we know that the whole creation has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now. And not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the firstfruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons, the redemption of our bodies.  For in this hope we were saved. Now hope that is seen is not hope. For who hopes for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we wait for it with  patience."

Romans 8:18-25 ESV

Creation waits for us, and we wait for Him. In this eagerness, we are patient because we know that we can trust the faithfulness of our God to deliver us back into the creation that He intended for us. We dance to that old forgotten song as the music escapes from our lungs. We were born to the echoes of the rhythm of our home and there is joy in the movement. It thrills my heart that this song is in agreement with that, alongside the rest of the EP. (except for the last song which is stinking adorable. :)

I hope you can enjoy this band as much as I am! I also hope that there's a full length album coming soon. 

~Heather Rose