Short Skirt, Long Jacket

I want a girl who gets up early, (gets up early!)
I want a girl who stays up late, (stays up late!)
I want a girl with uninterupted prosperity,
Who uses a machete, to cut through red tape.
~Short Skirt, Long Jacket by Cake

I find this song by Cake quite humorous, even though I'm sure the majority of the innuendos elude me. I'm so naive I'm not even sure if the song contains innuendos, but I'm going to assume that it does to be safe.

But I think it's funny what Cake is looking for in a girl. In essence he's looking for the modern day woman who has "good dividends" and is "sharp as a tack". I think it funny, because this weekend I started realizing that Cake and I are not in competition for the same girl.

Two of my best friends were in town this weekend, and as has become our custom, we finished off with the obligatory pow-wow. We discussed AIDS in Africa, poverty, and how we can help with the situation. And of course, we discussed girls. It's hard to transition from AIDs in Africa to girls, but it is indeed possible.

One of my friends just started dating a girl, after briefly subdating (a whole other blog could cover that very definition!), and he was describing why he liked her. Every part of her, he said, flowed grace and encouragement. Everything she seemed to do was driven by deep love and compassion. While I'm sure she isn't perfect, she sounded incredibly angelic. It then occured to me those qualitys are what I'm looking for.

Many times I think I've gone after the wrong things. Someone who needs me and I can fix. Someone who is funny and enchanting. Someone who is beautiful or brilliant. Most of these things are good, but they aren't eternal. How great to think of someone who supports and encourages me in everything I do. Who is wanting me to reach Heaven and be with God as much as she wants to be there herself.

Not only is that what I want, but that's what I want to be for someone. I can only attract someone like that if I am like that myself. There may be some deep evangelical lesson in all of this too, because that is what draws people to understanding God more.

So I now know what to look for. It's taken awhile, and I've been a little more dense than I should have been. Of course, she probably needs to be brilliant and cute too. :)


Porn Sunday and Other Heretical Teachings

When I was growing up I was afraid of other churches. I would hear about the Baptist church down the road and how they used an organ. I felt sorry for them, and prayed that God might overlook their folly so they could go to heaven. In fact, my best friend Melissa went to a Baptist church, and I was deeply worried that we wouldn't be together when God's judgement came. And of course there were others I was concerned about. Apparently these other churches didn't even use the Bible! Those Methodists, Presbyterians, and Community Church people. You know who I'm talking about.

What naivete! Where did these thoughts come from? For the past year I've been peering in to other churches via the Internet and have been shocked by the messages I've heard. They're good! In fact, they are typically better than anything I've ever heard in my life. They are more relevant to my life, to society, and do not seem like trite, tired messages.

So to give you a sampling of what I'm talking about here are some lessons I really like from three different churches:

Jacob's Well (Kansas City)
What is Forgiveness
Becoming Abolitionists

Porn Sunday - LifeChurch.TV (local to Edmond, OKC)

Listing of Messages

You know, I think I may attend one of these churches here soon. Don't worry. I'll say a special prayer beforehand.


My American Life

My favorite show on NPR is called "This American Life." I'm certainly an NPR junkie, but this particular show that comes on every Saturday at noon is my favorite. Even more than Car Talk, which is by far the funniest show. I like this show because each week they give little glimpses into real people's lives. The show is divided into acts, and chronicles a different aspect of living in America. Some weeks its as simple as summer camps, while other weeks its about chronic addictions or Shakespeake in prison. And each week I am reminded that all of us have a story, and that our stories are fascinating.

I like movies and books a lot too. I think I like them because they are brief snapshots of time that covers so much ground. We learn a lot about a character's past, how they handle a certain situation, and what that will mean for the rest of their life (if they are so lucky to survive the plot!).

Sometimes I like to view my life in these terms. I've often been vain enough to think that my life would make an interesting story. The characters that would weave in and out of my story would be interesting too. I could talk about my friend who is a poet, wants to be a monk, and doesn't mind being referred to as crazy. I could discuss my friend who is a great teacher, is full of life, and defines the modern day independent woman. I could discuss the occasional fling that comes in and out of my life, or the one girl who really inspires me to be a better man so that I might one day win her heart.

But I'd really love to hear my life narrated. I'd love to know how my past is definng me, and what the future holds. I think hearing our lives through a story would give it more purpose. The things that go on each day sometimes seem mundane. Another five miler. Another day at work. Another day going to church. But these are pages in my life, that somehow make up the larger story. Those pages are somehow giving you character clues into who I am, and how the story will end.

I wonder what that story would be. I wonder what that story is.