Dé Luain, Feabhra 28, 2005

To the next step

I've been extremely irritable lately. Every little thing has begun to ware on me, rubbing me the wrong way. I believe that this is happening because of all of the unanswered questions that I have and the lack of time that I seem to have to even just look into them. I've been wondering about the next steps of my life and I'm finding that I may not be as ready to move on as I once believed. The trouble comes from not wanting to be at College anymore. As I was explaining earlier, I'm tired of volunteering. I'm doing to much and not being paid for any of it. One one side of the coin, I love to do what I'm doing, working in churches, leading the music, etc, but I'm to the point that I can't do it for free anymore. It's just one of many things that has begun to ware on me. I need the freedom to focus on a job and split my time between study and work. I've been accused on several occasions of being pulled in to many directions and I agree that I am, but just don't have a choice right now. I don't have time either. A commodity that is in high demand but extremely low supply. One of my friends wrote me an email a little while ago citing my up coming graduation and saying that I must be going through a plethora of emotions, though I think that the under ridding emotion that she was pointing towards was excitement. Now I am excited, anyone in my position would be and I would be an idiot not to be excited about the accomplishment of College graduation with a double major, but there is a lot more that is going along with that. I have options...Good ones, and I'm excited about them as well. I'm sad to leave, sad that I will miss my friends and may not see them in a long time. I find myself increasingly angry and irritated like I said before, which makes me angry and irritated because I don't like be angry and irritated (stupid I know). I find myself continually separating myself from people here, or they're separating from me I don't know. That goes along with friends who are dating and spending increasingly more time with each other, which is a good thing, but its becoming harder to simply spend time with these people. I'm finding that I don't want to. I'm uncomfortable around them, and being uncomfortable is becoming way to familiar and I would rather be alone than feel uncomfortable. I'm being overloaded with emotion and thought and feel that I'm about to just shut down. I don't know. There is so much to process and no time to do it. I'll probably end up braking down the day after graduation. So be it. Here's to the adventure called life. To the valley's and mountain tops. To the times when paths run together and to the times when they veer away never to meet again. Here's to the ones I'll never forget. To the one's who brighten my day, even though they maybe half a world away. Here's to the journey. Lead me where you will. My destination is set. My lamp is lit. My feet are ready. It's time for the next step.

Déardaoin, Feabhra 24, 2005

Random Acts of Violence

So my friends and I...ok so morty and I have started a trend of random acts of violence toward each other and the other members of our little group. Now I say we've started it because currently we're the only two implementing the idea. Now for those of you asking, "why not random acts of kindness?" It's simple. It's and overdone, overused concept. We're not talking about slashing tires, breaking windows, or putting knives to peoples throats. No this is just an excersize in the stealthiness of our friends. We're talking about unexpected shots to the arm or side, swift kicks in the rear. And while I could forsee this escalating into a prank war, somthing that I'm not at all object to, I don't think there is anything wrong with it. We're not out to hurt people, just startle them...rattle them a little. We're just looking for a little good, clean, stress releaving fun that all of us are finding in short supply lately. I think Florida will do us all a lot of good. Yes, well still me on tour and maybe not doing exactly what we would like to do, but we will be off campus and in the company of friends. A little sun, a little fun, some good food, and few great experiences, and a little rest. It's definatly deserved by all of the friends in my group. And for those friends who are no longer physically with the group, we wish you were. I hope you are all finding that stress releaf that you need.

Dé Céadaoin, Feabhra 23, 2005

75 or bust

I was thinking earlier about how I've often said that I don't plan on living past the age of 75. I really don't. On this thought I began to have a conversation with myself (no I'm not crazy) about how ludicris this statement might be, but I actually have several reasons as to why this might not be to far from the truth.

Reason One - This is me we're talking about here. I'm not always known for making "good" decisions, or having safe past-times. For example, diving 2400 miles in a weekend to make it to a friends wedding, the shear amount and distences that I drive by myself, especially considering the times I've driven long distances (6 hrs or more) on less than three hours of sleep, doing double doses of Nyquil then forcing myself to stay awake to watch a movie because it will be funnier that way, Alpine Skiing, never looking when walking across the street, standing in the line of traffic for fun, my constant neglect of personal safty, holding bottle rockets in my hand until they take off, or almost explode. I'm not smart, you'll never hear me say that I'm smart. I'm sure I friends out there who have many more stories to add to this area. I'm as likely to die saying, "hey guys watch this!" as I am lieing in my bed at a ripe old age, probably more likely.

Reason Two - I'm a musician and we're not known for our longevity. How many composers do you know that actually lived long, happy, productive lives. Not many. I mean seriously, we're plagued with bad marriages, emprisonment, poverty, public humiliation, drug abuse, alciohol abuse, venereal disease, insanity and other mental problems, depression, the list just keeps going. We're screwed up people. Walk into any music department of any college and you'll know, there's a reason we normally don't have friends outside of the department. Man if I'm not deft, blind, and half way insane by 75, I'll want to end it just to make sure it doesn't happen. Kind of like retiring in my prime instead of trying to stick it out with younger players.

Reason Three - I'm not exactly headed in to the church after I'm done here at the WU. I'm planning on going into the mission field. I'll probably where myself out, and die on some mountianside somewhere. That's really all I have to say here

So after this rather morbid thought process I got out of the shower and took a nap. Yes, I was so relaxed I was able to sleep. But lets face it, I'm not afraid of many things, and death really isn't in that list, though it probably should be. In anycase it was kind of fun to think about. I'm not actually going to euthanise myself at the age of 75, I'm not even sure I'll make it to that point, but if I do I'm sure I'll come up with a few reasons to keep going. When God is done with me, I'll go home.

Dé Luain, Feabhra 21, 2005

Gotta love Sunday Nights

I love nights like last night. Well...Almost. I was "doing homework" in the student center, which basically means I was doing anything but. Talking to friends as they pass by, or eating with them, getting up and walking around. Eventually two friends came and joined me at my table and started talking about the Batchlor party that we want to through for another of our friends. They want to take him camping. A whirl wind trip from Indiana to Yellowstone and back in time for the wedding. I was helping them out with some of the details, even though I won't be able to go. They're leaving the Thursday after graduation and won't be back until after I leave for New Zealand. After we got most of the preliminaries worked out we started talking about trips that we'd love to take. Next May we want to drive to Alaska, hit Glacier N.P., and then maybe Denali and end up in Anchorage. The trip of a life time. Just the four of us that sat there in that booth, taking Justin's car. He wants to retire his car before Grad. school and this would be going out in a blaze of glory. We also talked about driving to the southern most tip of Argentina or Chile and pushing his car off of a cliff. An amazing conversation that really can't be put into words. We were all laughing so loudly that we disrupted several study sessions. Ah-mazing. Simply stunning. I love nights like that. We really didn't get much done, but we all needed some time to just sit back a laugh and plan some fun for the future. We're all "over work and under paid" as I put it the other day. Time to relax has been at a premium lately, and laughter especially seems forced of late. We're all tense. We're all upset to our own degree. We all love the things we're doing, for the most part anyway, but sometimes you just need time away. I glad for all our sakes that Spring Tour this year will be a fairly easier one, compared to previous years. Florida will be a nice change for us all. WE NEED A BRAKE!!!
I said that I enjoyed last night for the most part. I said that simply because, as always happens on this campus, the conversation turned to relationship, which is to be expected when planning a Batchlor party. It also always seems to happen that the conversation will end up pointed in my direction. First because I'm single, but second because I really don't talk about it. I don't talk about people that I know that I "like in that way," mostly because there really is no one at this point in time that I would want to be, or am able to be with. I have lots of friends and am rather satisfied with those relationship. I happened to be talking to a friend online while I was in the middle of conversations about dropping cars of the cliffs of Argentina, and they found out who it was and the next logical step in conversation was, "Combs you should date her." I graciously turned down the thought, it's just not what I want right now. Unfortunately that wasn't good enough for my friends, but thankfully we started talking about the problems of driving to Argentina and the focus was once again off of me. I love my friends. I think they just get excited when I start talking about a women that I know who I talk to and have decent relationship with. God Bless em'.

Dé hAoine, Feabhra 18, 2005

Faith Like a Child

In a devotion earlier this evening, meaning yesterday when it was still today and not tomorrow already, a friend of mine reminded me of a song that I once listened to a great deal. I never really understood all of the song. Faith like a child was the title, Jars of Clay. Still a favorite but not listened to as often as some now. It talks about a girl who, like me grew up in church never questioned it, but later grows up only to notice that things have changed. Now I'm not the most philosphic person ever, but like everyone who goes off to college in persute of knowledge and a good time, I ask my questions sometimes trivial, sometimes a touch more deep. In the past five years I have gone from the newness of fresh faith, to skepticism and near cynicism for some of the practices of the church. In the course of my life I've questioned my life, I've quesitoned my faith, and I've questioned my religion. I don't have many answers. In fact I seem to only have more questions. The more knowledge I gain the lest I realize that I know, and the more I question what I do know. There are days that I wish that I didn't question everything. I wish that I had that faith like a child that the song and my friend talks talked about. I envy people like him who can simply take the Bible what as absolute truth. Instead I sometimes see it as a starting place for an argument. If knowledge is power, why do people with so much knowledge seem to be so powerless. Just food for thought. What is better, to choose faith over knowledge or to choose knowledge over faith? Or can we choose both?

Dé Máirt, Feabhra 15, 2005

on the edge

Dé Sathairn, Feabhra 12, 2005

The Hellish Weekend

Ok, becuase internet explore freaked out and lost my last post. I'll give you a run down of what was said. I don't have time to write it over.
My Weekend sucked, spent alone. Annoyed with V-day, worst holliday ever, yes I'm single. Couldn't do what I wanted to becuase roommate spending weekend on the phone with girlfriend in Cali, I think i'm going to puke. Life sucks, I hate mine right now. I've looked, I've gone out, I've been a good friend, still no one wants to date/hang out with me. Singleness causing me to be a campus reject, especially becuase of Christian Ministries major. Wanna be pastors leaving without wife a laugable offence. Don't want to be a pastor, missionary life for me. Expecting to travel a great deal, no where to call home. Don't want to drag anyone into this, thats just not fair. My future both excites and scares me.
I think that was it. I'll probably write on this again, the weekends not over yet folks. anyway. Gotta go.

Dé Céadaoin, Feabhra 09, 2005

The Duality of Man

First let me start off by saying...I know I switched spots. I didn't inadvertently but I did it so deal. Oops my bad, anyway.
Stevenson put to paper a story. One with roots in his native Edinburgh. Changing the names and adding elaboration to the pieces of this political folktale, Stevenson tells the story of a man searching to do good in his life. Being a medical doctor, he wants to end suffering, to defeat evil once and for all. He creates an elixir that he is convinced will separate once and for all the evil in man from the good, but in the end he must finally test it on himself. In doing so he releases a being from inside of him that is fully evil. For the rest of the story we are thrust into the struggle between two characters sharing one body yet, so different in the mindset, yet again so intrinsically tied together that separation would result in the death of both. Obviously the story is that of “The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde.” I was thinking about this earlier today, after a discussion with a friend. We we’re talking about how quickly one can change their moods. This set me along this track but my thoughts quickly changed to a question. How much is this story like the Pauline disease of wanting to do what is right yet not being able to? What is it that ties us so tightly to the “old life?” Is it merely habit or is there, like Dr. Jekyll sought to discover, something buried deep in us that if we were to actually dig it out, would simply kill us? But now the pagan, cynic in me crawls out of its whole and asks the question, what is the real façade that we are trying to destroy? What happens if you come to the end of your search and realize that the façade was not the good…but instead the truth is the evil? What if the longing to be known as the Noble Savage is the biggest lie you could tell yourself? This synicism doesn't last long but it's effects are certianly pervasive. I think that like Lewis my greatest fear of late has become not a realization that God doesn't exist, I don't think that is possible, but worst that the Theist are right. That God who can feel ever present in the "good times" can feel so absent in the evil times. Again this stems from my current cynical thoughts, and isn't actually founded in my current situation. I simply find myself asking these questions, and compounded with answers that are often more mysterious than insightful I find myself lost in my own thoughts. I've been doing that a lot lately.
I feel so ever increasingly alone. Transitioning from one life to the next, from college to the "real world." I often wonder what lies ahead. I feel like the charater of Frost standing at the divergence of those two road in that innocent yellow wood. I'm just not sure that I want to take the path less traveled by. For Frost it seemed to make all the difference, to me...I'm afraid of the world I'm about to set into.
So many questions, so few answers. Its no wonder Christ talked of mustard seeds when it came to faith. It may move a mountian, but its just as likly to easy you through one more day of walking in His direction.