Monday, July 30, 2007

Is the commercial jingle a thing of the past?

Has anyone else noticed this?

About a month ago, while washing dishes and listening to the TV in the other room, I noticed I was hearing a lot of familiar songs. Once I noticed, I couldn't help it. Each time a commercial break come on, I paid attention to the music. And it's became so common to hear pop songs, I started a list to see what would happen.

Target - Hello/Goodbye by the Beatles
Pantene - Unwritten by Natashia Beddingfield
Crumble Kraft Cheese - Unbelievable by EMF
Swifer Wet Jet - One Way by Blondie
KFC - Sweet Home Alabama by Lynrd Skynrd
Bali - There She Goes by The La's
Venus Razors - Venus by Bananarama (kind of an obvious one)
Gillette Soleil Razors - Let the Sun Shine In from the musical Hair. (Also used in the Kia Rondo commericals)
GMC Acadia - I'll Melt with You by Mest
Zales - A Thousand Miles by Vanessa Carlton
Lending Tree - One Thing Leads to Another by The Fixx
Lipton Tea - This Little Light of Mine (I have no idea who originally recorded this song.)
Sun Chips - Kiss Me by Sixpence None the Richer
Chevrolet - American Pie by Don McLean (I'm very surprised this hasn't happened much sooner.)
Cotton - Goodbye to You by Michelle Branch
Propel Fitness Water - Under Pressure by Queen and David Bowie (arguably the greatest pop song ever recorded.)
I've heard the dreaded tick song in the background of a commercial for S'mores. But whether is was for Hersey's, Jet Puffed, or Nabisco, I don't recall.

Granted, this list is for over a month of paying attention, but it seems a little long. (And proves I have a ridiculous amount of music-related information in the back corners of my mind.) Why aren't commercial jingles around much anymore? The whole concept of writing a song just for a product is a simple one - give the consumer some way to remember the product so when in the store, they will buy it, right? What about the song Kiss Me is going to make me pick up a bag of Sun Chips at the grocery store? I wouldn't even remember it if I hadn't written all of the above down.

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

Just Breathe

I'm scared.

Nope. I take that back.

I'm terrified.

I don't know why it just hit me this weekend. Probably because I've been looking for housing options up in Minnesota, trying to figure out how this going back to school thing is going to work. The academic part I'm not worried about... but being 10 years older than everyone else there does. And I don't know why.

Bethel is a large school, with an undergraduate & graduate school plus a seminary. I don't know how many students they have, but I joined the Bethel network on Facebook to get an idea of what it's like a. The college network has over 5,000 members, and I grew up in a town of 300. I went to college in a town of maybe 2,000, and I currently live in a town of about 35,000. I lived in a fairly big city after right after I finished undergrad, and I did okay, I guess. I didn't like it there, but it wasn't because the city was big.

But this fear is more than just about being older and going back to school, and it about more than living in a big city. I just don't know what it is yet.

I've had a panic attack before. A few years ago, three in the morning, I woke up completely freaked out and hyperventilating. When it wouldn't stop, I called the only person I know who would be up at that hour and went to his place. It took him 2 hours to get me down off the ledge, but he did it. I'm forever grateful to my friend for doing what he did. It's a weird feeling, having a panic attack. It's kind of like being short of breath without exercising, your heart racing not pounding, and like you just drank nine cans of Mountain Dew. Your eyes begin to dart all around like you are scared of something in the room, and you want to look over your shoulder even though no one's there.

I never wanted to go through that again, and yet I had another panic attack on Sunday evening, on my weekly drive home. This one did not have the over the shoulder paranoia, but instead included tears. Lots of them. It felt like Wormwood was in my brain, planting all these seeds of doubts about who I am, what I've doing next with my life and that I would be better off... well [insert John Cusack movie title here].

The minute it happened I was able to take the thought and make it captive and obedient to Christ. My heart slowed, the tears left, and I felt peace again. I don't want to know how unsafe that was on I-80.

I'm still scared. I feel hard pressed on every side, but I know I will not be crushed; I am most certainly perplexed, but I refuse to be in despair. God knew I couldn't do it without someone else, though, so I'm thankful that an old college friend - a very close friend - got back into touch with me last week and is already giving me loads of advice and calming my nerves.

He is good. Even when it seems like everything else isn't.

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

What Do I Deserve?

I struggle with the idea of the prosperity gospel.

Thankfully, I didn't grow-up with it; I've only encountered it as an adult and old enough to understand the premise. John Piper has a great sermon on it you can listen to at the University Christian Fellowship blog in the November 2005 archives.

Joel Osteen's ministry is reported to spend over 20 million dollars ALONE buying television time. I feel sick to my stomach when I hear a number like this. I know in my heart it's wrong, and maybe my head just hasn't caught up with it all yet.

Do I think God has a better plan for me? Yes. Do I think I deserve it? No. Do I think that if I pray God will make me rich he will? No. I'm not into believing that God will change his mind just because I ask him to. What more could I get that I don't already have? I have salvation in Christ. I am his co-heir in heaven. It doesn't get any better than that.

A Little More (anyone know the artist?)

Turn Your eyes from on this way
I have proved to live a dastardly day
I hid my face from the saints and the angels
Who sing of Your Glory
What You had in mind
When we seek we’ll find
Shine show me grace

A Little More than I can give
A little more than I deserve
Unearth this holiness I can’t earn
It’s a little more than I can give
A little more than I deserve

For all the sin that lives in me
It took a nail to set me free still,
What I do I don’t want to do
And so goes the story
What You had in mind
When we seek we’ll find
Shine, show me grace

With all this motivation
I still find a hesitation deep in my soul
Despite all my demanding
I still find You understanding
Show me Grace
Show me Grace I know is...

A Little More than I can give
A little more than I deserve
Unearth this holiness I can’t earn
It’s a little more than I can give
A little more than I deserve

Monday, July 16, 2007

Good News

The doctors determined my dad did need a stent. They performed the procedure this afternoon and all is well. They decided to keep him overnight so they could run a few more tests tomorrow, in order to determine why he's keeps having these small strokes. The speculation is that he has a small hole in his heart, which they believe can be fixed.

It feels like good news. It's just still scary. Thanks to all of you who prayed.

And just for fun, a classic video for you all to enjoy.

Monday, July 09, 2007

Please Pray

7/9 Update: My parent's local doctor referred us to a neurologist at St. Elizabeth's in Lincoln. After those doctors reviewed the MRI they did on Thursday and his past medical history, they determined he for sure had a stroke and they want more tests done at their hospital. (Something called doplar tests.) It's possible that after getting the results of those tests they will put stents in his neck. If they decide to do this, he should be able to go home the next day. We are meeting with these doctors next Monday and hoping for the best.

Thank you all for your prayers. It's weird. I spent the entire weekend at my parents house, enjoying a very large fireworks display (previously planned that my dad wouldn't cancel) put on by the local pyromaniacs club (man, do I live in a redneck state) and painting their basement. He seems fine. Nothing is different, other than an obvious exhaustion in his eyes. I am thankful both my parents are home together, because my mom knew enough to not mess around and get him to the hospital the minute she heard his speech slur. Blood-thinners are an amazing thing, and my very determined red-headed mother is another.

We are blessed.

My father suffered from a couple of mini-strokes in the summer of 2004. He recovered almost completely with the except of some strength in his legs. He's been able to retire early, hand the farm over to my oldest brother and enjoy his senior years.

Today he had another stroke. He is fine for now, but after spending all day at the hospital and running tests, they won't know more until tomorrow. They may have to operate.

I'm the luckiest girl in the world to have the dad I do. He is supportive, funny, mischievous, loving and strong. I couldn't ask for anything more.

Please pray.

Monday, July 02, 2007

Once again, tagged

Blame it on The Very Left Reverend.

“5 things I dig about Jesus”

1.) He taught me how to love. Christ loves me no matter what. That freaks me out a little. But that love is the greatest example of what love really is - to lay down one's life for a friend. To be there when no one else is. To forgive the unforgivable. To go beyond justice to mercy. This love, his love to me... it's unconditional. And he taught me to love others the same way. Ultimately, love comes from Jesus and to try and control it is futile. I get love because he gives love. And I am able to give love because I was loved first.

2.) He worked with his hands. I love that Jesus was a carpenter. As Bonhoeffer once called him, "a man for others". He'd hang out with all kinds of people. He didn't live the life one might expect a King to live; he lived the life given to him. We can all take a lesson from that.

3.) He puts up with my crap. Over and over. I don't get it, I don't understand why, but he does. I fail him every day and everyday, I kneel at the foot of the cross and ask forgiveness. And it's always there. It doesn't make sense. Maybe that's why I dig it.

4.) He humbles and encourages me at the same time. I think this is the most surprising part of being in the ministry I've experienced so far. How the littlest thing you do can make a difference, in good and bad ways. I'm honestly just trying to live out what I feel he's called me to do and it's astonishing to me how often it makes a difference to someone else. Only Christ could do both at the same time and not irritate me.

5.) He offends people - and he's right. He broke boundaries and did the unexpected. He doesn't sugar-coat, he tells us to do the opposite of what's in our nature to do, and somehow he made the answers to life's questions simple. It's no wonder some people think he's a lunatic. He answered yes or no questions with stories that were puzzles, he forgave what most would see as unforgivable, and knew he was going to die and didn't run from it. He unflinching spoke the truth. There's nothing typical about Jesus.

Now that, I dig.

Love it.

Mr. Bean rocks my sauce.

You know... I just realized I went to high school with a guy who looked exactly like Mr. Bean. But my classmate wasn't funny.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

I'm Bored

My hair's not this red, but they didn't have a brown option. But otherwise, yeah, this is me.

Man, I am really bored.