Tag: faith

Heading back to Portlandia

Its official…I’m heading back to Portland at the end of the month.  I don’t have a permanent place to live yet and I don’t have a job yet (though I’m trying to continue on remotely at my current job…fingers crossed).  So this is another leap of faith.  Now to get everything done between now and the end of the month.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2012/heading-back-to-portlandia/

God’s Secretary

by R.S. Gwynn

Her e-mail inbox always overflows.
Her outbox doesn’t get much use at all.
She puts on hold the umpteen-billionth call
As music oozes forth to placate those
Who wait, then disconnect.  Outside, wind blows,
Scything pale leaves.  She sees a sparrow fall
Fluttering to a claw-catch on a wall.
Will He be in today?  God only knows.

She hasn’t seen His face–He’s so aloof.
She’s long resigned He’ll never know or love her
But still can wish there were some call, some proof
That He requires a greater service of her.
Fingers of rain now drum upon the roof,
Coming from somewhere, somewhere far above her.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2009/gods-secretary/

today i can believe

my friend tamie writes at the owls & the angels

she often brightens my day with her posts

and gives me hope when my faith is weak

from her post this morning…

So, hello again, people. I hope you’ve been encouraging each other. I
hope you all know you’re loved, from the tips of your beautiful toes to
your shining hearts. Even if they feel veiled or sad or numb, they’re
still shining deep down inside there somewhere. If you find it hard to
believe today, I understand. I find it hard to believe often. But today
I will believe for you.

thank you tamie…for helping me believe today.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2008/today-i-can-believe/

Maundy Thursday (90210)

I’m not really sure how I felt about the Maundy Thursday service tonight.  It was good, but I was still a little disappointed that only (i think) 6 people actually got their feet washed.  They were chosen to represent the larger community and reflected different segments of the parish population.  But then this is a larger church than I have ever been in as well, so perhaps it simply would have taken too long.  Normally this is my favorite service of the year, but I’m not so sure this year.

But I also wonder if it has more to do with me than the actual service.  I’m still feeling disconnected towards God and my faith.  It’s not that I don’t believe anymore, its that I’m not hearing anything right now.  I go to church each week on Sunday morning, but it doesn’t feed me like I’m used to.  Sometimes I enjoy the sermons, but that’s more of a product of good preaching than being inspired by the Holy Spirit.

My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?

Jesus’ words could also be my cry right now.

I just wish I could open my ears and hear where God is guiding me right now.  I’m really stressing about what I’m going to be doing after May.  Whether or not I’ll drift away from church for awhile or even for good.  I feel disillusioned about the institution of the church right now or at least how I fit into it.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2008/maundy-thursday-90210/

Sketch 9

Looks like I’m a couple days late on posting my weekly sketch again.  This week I don’t even have a good excuse, I’ve just been lazy.  I did end up making it to the Getty Villa last Saturday.  It was a cloudy morning, threatening rain the entire time.  The Villa holds the antiquities collection of the Getty.  Its designed to resemble a Roman villa from Herculaneum.  Most of the collection consists of sculptures, however there is also some jewels, coins and frescoes as well.  It is of course much smaller than the main Getty Museum, but still quite interesting.  Afterwards, I picked up some cupcakes from Sprinkles and stopped for lunch in Little Ethiopia.

I had to take my car in to the shop, it was making a rubbing noise anytime I turned.  Turns out it was just that the power steering fluid was low.  Apparently the power steering box could use to be replaced, because its got a small leak, but its also $750 for the part.  So the mechanic said, just make sure to top off the fluid if it starts making noise.  With an oil change and a few other minor maintenance things, I managed to escape for under $200.  That made me happy, I was expecting something closer (or exceeding) my $600 budget (which I didn’t really have either).

One of my friends posed an interesting question last week.  Which is worse: getting drunk or pre-marital sex?  As I was thinking about my answer to this question, I also thought about how my answer has changed from when I was in high school to now a few years out of college.  My simplistic current answer would be getting drunk is worse.  Not only does heavy drinking damage your body, it has the potential to damage people around you in both your actions and emotionally.  Pre-marital sex…well my views about the institution of marriage in our current political environment effect my answer on that.  I personally have issues with the “civil” side of marriage.  I don’t think we should be regulating who people can or cannot marry, I mean, if two adults love each other and want to commit to each other, than they should be able to.  So back to the pre-marital sex thing, I believe that sex is an important part of our expression of love towards our chosen partner.  It is still something that is very special and should only be done in the confines of a committed relationship.  So for those people that marriage isn’t an option or that have problems with the institution of marriage, should they not be able to express their love physically?

This weekend I’m going to focus on working on my resume and looking for jobs for after the semester is over.  Right now I’m focusing on three places for my job search, 1)Santa Rosa, 2)LA, 3)Eugene/Portland.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2008/sketch-9/

When things are good…

“When you are going good, you’re not that good.  When you are going bad, you are not that bad.”

— John McKay, former Oregon football player (and USC Head Coach)
as related by Mike Garrett, current USC Athletic Director

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2008/when-things-are-good/

Sketch 6

Finally a day off!!!

Saturday, I decided to take advantage of the wonderful weather here in So. Cal. and I drove up to Malibu to check out one of the beaches up there.  It was in the mid-70s.  I just sat on the beach, read, and listened to the ocean.  Oh and called some friends in less friendlier climates…from the beach…to rub it in.

In the evening, I met up with the “Cuddle Call” group at Masa in Echo Park.  It’s a group of young adults doing some sort of ministry.  A place where we can learn and build up each other.  I’m glad to finally have something like this.  I’ve really needed some place where I could find support.  Even though it has pretty much come too late, but that’s a different story.

Work is still incredibly busy and stressful.  Compounding it all, I’m feeling pretty disconnected from God, faith, spirituality.  It makes it difficult to come to work with passion for my projects.  I feel defeated by my job and the largely only negative feedback I’ve been getting pretty much the entire time I’ve been working here.  I know that should challenge me to make things better, but right now I just don’t feel like there is anything I can do.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2008/sketch-6/

They don’t finally meet somewhere

The minute I heard my first love story
I started looking for you, not knowing
how blind that was.

Lovers don’t finally meet somewhere.
They’re in each other all along.


I wonder if at times I am just guilty of hearing only what I want to hear.  If perhaps I’ve been deceiving myself in my pursuit of some sort of meaningful relationship.  That in my looking, I’ve become blind to love itself.

Over the past year it feels like I’ve been constently beaten down in this pursuit.  I have to wonder if some of those bruises are self-inflicted.   Am I ascribing feelings of love to feelings of lust?  I fell for a couple different people this past year.  Each time however fate seemed to have other things in store (pending moves were issues in both cases, though not by any means the only issues).  I’m waiting for the day to arrive that the chorus of the Dire Straits song “Romeo & Juliet” will no longer be true.

Juliet, the dice was loaded from the start,
And I bet, then you exploded in my heart,
And I forget, I forget, the movie song
When you gonna realize, it was just that the time was wrong, Juliet?

Right now I am stuck in this paradox of extreme spring fever and an indifference towards relationships.  I don’t need something completely serious…but I don’t want just a random hookup either.  From experience, I know that the random hookup won’t make me any happier.

So I’m left with just faith.  I believe, as Rūmī suggests, I will find what was in me all along.  It brings me hope and with that hope I maintain at least some level of happiness.  There are days that it is a struggle to believe in that hope and happiness. These days I rely on my faith and also on poetry.  Sometimes what I need is time in prayer.  Other times, the prayer comes through the poetry of others.  Some days I just need to write.  It doesn’t always make sense.  It isn’t always poetry.  It is just love.  I don’t need to “understand” it.  I just need to give myself to it.  Without condition.  Without requition.  In many ways this has become my religion.  Love and my faith in it.

Permanent link to this article: https://www.rhinoblues.com/thoughts/2007/they-dont-finally-meet-somewhere/