Monday, April 25, 2011

25 Before 25

If I had to choose 2 things to do for the rest of my life they would be to make lists and to talk about myself. The following includes both.

I've always wanted to make a bucket list, but considering I'm not even 20 yet, that idea may be somewhat "far-fetched". (Though the good Lord can take me out whenever He feels it necessary... and after this blog and how much I talk about myself, it may be that time) I like making goals. And I like achieving them. I feel a great sense of accomplishment as I cross completed tasks off a "to do list". So this is my 6 (or 5 1/2) year "to do list". I sat here for a bit tonight thinking of things I would like to accomplish by the time I turn 25. I think I chose easily accessible things for me to do. I think it's goofy when people make lists like this and then you see their blog 3 months later and nothing is crossed off. I would like to do complete this entire list before I'm 25, if not, no biggie. Though, I can almost guarantee that any task that has to do with buying something or some sort of shopping will be completed thoroughly, possibly even 2 or 3 times over.

1. Own a white pant suit. A la Jessica Simpson at the 2003 VMA's.

-Interesting Fact regarding this "task". When I watched the VMA red carpet that year I can remember seeing her in that suit being the first time I can recall ever showing some sort of interest in fashion and having a inspiration piece that I wanted to one day own. Though I will admit, the suit I will own will be much less revealing.

2. Revisit Washington, D.C.

3. Go to the "Unclaimed Baggage" Store in Scottsboro, Alabama.

4. Visit Maine during the late summer/early fall. ( And only during that time frame... any other time I think that it would be too cold)

5. Run some sort of organized race/marathon.

6. Learn to sew.

7. Make a (fabulous) cake using fondant like the "Cake Boss". And talk like him the entire time I am making it.

8. Meet Victoria Beckham. (Hopefully I will be looking completely fabulous when this happens)

9. Meet Tina Fey (again). I will explain to her in the least creepy way possible that I firmly believe I am her long lost sibling.

10. Read the entire Bible. Book after book consecutively.

11. Buy a pair of Louboutins. (not at full price, of course)

12. Attend the Superbowl (preferably a Steelers superbowl) with my daddy.

13. Attend one or all of the following tapings for: The Ellen DeGeneres Show, Jimmy Kimmel Live, Late Night with Jimmy Fallon, or Saturday Night Live. (Though I would really love to star on an episode of SNL... or host... whichever comes first)

14. Spend New Years Eve in New York City.

15. Adopt an accent for an entire day.

16. Go camping. (Preferably somewhere that has running water... like the Ritz Carlton, kidding... or am I?)

17. Go see a movie at the theater alone.

18. Be completely blonde. No highlights. A full color! (This is, however, dependent on whether or not I can tan enough to pull the color off.)

19. Start eating breakfast regularly. A breakfast that doesn't consist of a Frito-Lay product or any sort of carbonation.

20. Do a fast.

21. Catch a fish. (Preferably with a net so that I don't have to put the bait on a hook, but I'm not totally opposed to the idea.)

22. Start wearing a watch.

23. Buy a new pair of eye glasses. This may not seem like such a feat, but I have had the same eye glasses since I was in 8th grade. That's 7 years. I'm hoping it won't take me another 7 to get a new pair.

24. Take an improv class.

25. Watch every film nominated for an Academy Award in the "Best Picture" category for the current year, each year.

So, there you (or I suppose- I) have it. Let's see if I can do it. Not too difficult. I think I'll do well. Considering #5 should be crossed off that list as of May 7th if all goes as planned.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

"Over Spiritualizing"

I don't enjoy blogging because I don't feel like anyone really gives a rat's patootie about what I have to say or my view on things. But this topic, I found surprisingly easy to write on and very entertaining.

As a Christian, I think we often try to find spiritual meaning in any and every thing we do. 1 Corinthians says, "So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God." So I suppose when we do so, we are fulfilling our "duties" as a Christian to live out God's word. But sometimes taking out the trash is just taking out the trash. There is nothing supernatural or holy about it.

I'm not a "holy roller". I don't push my beliefs on everyone I meet. I don't judge people on their flaws or indecencies or mistakes. I'm very loving and forgiving by nature (almost perfect :)... kidding. I'm not the stereotypical version of someone who belongs to a Southern Baptist church. (Side-note: These are not my views on Southern Baptists. Just my observations on what a large portion of people think is normal of us.) I often find myself having to defend my religious affiliation because of the "reputation" that Baptists earned/earn by shouting the gospel at folks sitting in Friday afternoon traffic on Concord Mills Blvd. or by knocking on doors trying to get people in the doors of their church.

It often seems that some Christians put so much emphasis on adding spiritual value to everything they do that they completely lose sight of the reality of the world that they live in. They end up in their "Christian bubble". Listening to ONLY Christian radio, not watching television other than the 700 Club that comes on at the butt crack of dawn on ABC family, and sending their kids to school with only other Christian kids, because Heaven only knows how demon possessed they will turn out if they hear a curse word. These are the people that (for lack of better word) tick me off because they "over-spiritualize" things (though sometimes I do the same thing).

I often find myself praising the Lord when I correctly solve a prize puzzle on Wheel Of Fortune (not that there is anything wrong with that)... but COME ON! Or I am blaming Satan when things don't go my way.

I can remember one specific time when in that moment I thought it was a "God thing" but the more I thought back on it, I realized that is was more than likely just a coincidence. I was driving down the road, my phone plugged into the stereo, my Hillsong United Pandora Station going. (If you don't know what Pandora is... then google it. Then thank me for introducing you into the 21st century) As one song was ending, I thought, "it sure would be nice to hear 'Desert Song' by Hillsong right now." Then the next thing I knew that is exactly what came on! And I started crying because I though God heard what I had said. But about 45 seconds later I realized how ridiculous I was. So was it a coincidence or was it God? My vote is coincidence (but who knows!)

More often though, I find myself attributing every non-desirable result to Satan. I trivialize my faith. The world (regardless of what I would like to think) does not revolve around me. And the universe is not out to make our lives miserable. I kind of doubt Satan's to-do list looks like this:
1. Make sure the kids in Africa continue to starve.
2. Tornados! Earthquakes! Anything to destroy the Earth!
3. Make Lauren's favorite pants have a huge stain on them so that she has nothing to wear to church.

Am I right? Or am I right? That would be ridiculous of me to think.

I'm not sure if my reading "Love Wins" by Rob Bell has anything to do with my "everything is spiritual" mentality that I've had recently. But it sure does give you something to think about the next time something positive or negative happens to you. A coincidence or it is God?

PS- "Love Wins" is totally blowing my mind. I feel bad for everyone around me because all I've been saying is "Rob Bell this..." or "Rob Bell that..."! I've had to force myself to put it down! Very thought-provoking! Great read!