Thursday, September 23, 2010


It's been an interesting year regarding friends. (don't worry, I won't be talking about anyone who reads this blog - or if they do read this blog, they are stalking me, which is creepy)

Unfriended. That word has become a household word thanks to Facebook. This year, I've been unfriended, both on facebook and in the real world (and technically the facebook unfriending manifests itself in the real world too).

What I find to be sad, but amusing is that a few of these unfriendings are not the first time it's happened. Two words: Junior High. I hated Jr. High. And basically all my secondary education from there on out. The worst part for me was not having to get out of bed (although I did hate that), it wasn't the homework, teachers or having to ride the bus occasionally -very occasionally! Thanks mom :) School sucked because of the drama that ensues between kids.

I'd have friends who I thought were good friends. We'd hang out at school all day, talk on the phone all night, and then, the next day, I'd go to school and said friends would want nothing to do with me. I'd be treated as though I was a vile, infectious disease that was to be avoided at all costs. And it sucked. I hated going to school not knowing if I would have friends that day.

We grew up and I stayed in touch with those "friends" and things were fine. But it's amazing how something like those few years of Jr. High can have a huge impact on my life. I always felt ugly and undesireable because I was literally told those things. I have always been really insecure in friendships, afraid that I might do or say something that will make people stop liking me because in Jr. High, that was my reality. I've gotten a lot better about feeling that insecure; I try to be confident in who I am and realize that my personality was not a mistake.

But I found it to be kind of ironic that I have, once again, been unfriended. by the same people Now, I don't mind being unfriended in theory. I have unfriended people on facebook that I don't talk to ever, that I hardly know, or people who simply wouldn't notice I was no longer one of their 538 friends. But if I have offended someone, someone who is a real friend, I'd rather know and be given a chance to make it right (or at least given an explanation) rather than randomly discover that I have been nixed. I guess some people are good at unfriending... either that or I am good at losing friends? Maybe I really am doing something so annoying or horrible that someone would like me one day and not the next?

Not all of the people who've unfriended me in real life are facebook friends. I was recently unfriended by someone at work because (after 3 months of being ignored and I finally asked what was up and I found out that...) they held me to a high standard and apparently they thought I was only dating Karl because he's cute. Seriously? you might ask... Seriously. Now don't get me wrong, Karl is cute and I think physical attraction is super important. But if I was only in a relationship for "cute" then I wouldn't have waited so long to seriously date someone. I mean, is the world really full of people who are so shallow that they just unfriend people without even giving the person an opportunity to make things right or clear up whatever misunderstanding has taken place?

If someone says something super offensive and it seems out of nowhere, out of character, or extremely personal (but how would they know that about me???) then man up and talk to the person. Chances are there is a good explanation for what was said or what happened.

I've come to realize a few things through all these unfriendings. First, if someone is that shallow, I don't want them as a friend anyway. Second, I've learned what it means to be a real friend thus, I recognize those friends in my own life. Third, some friendships are only for a season and while it's a shame they have to end the way they do, there is no point in trying to force a friendship beyond it's purposed time.

Now, I am not claiming to be a perfect friend. I've definitely been that "bad friend" but situations like this have really made think about how I can be a better friend to those I love. It has also made me realize that we each have different ideas of what it is that others do that show they are a true friend. For me, it's listening during tough times, reaching out to me if I'm not myself (rather than "giving me space"), and weirdly, coming to watch me play hockey. For some reason, that is super high on my list. haha

I'm thankful for all my friends, both in "real life" and those I mostly keep in touch with in cyber world...

Monday, September 13, 2010

Hockey Season

I love fall!

The cooler weather is amazing, but more importantly, fall means hockey season is here!

The beginning of October marks the beginning of the NHL 2010-2011 season. And it means the beginning of MY hockey season.

This year, I will be playing on the Diablos coed team again.

And I will also be playing on a women's team: The Jets.

I am stoked!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Write God's Word on your heart foot...

The past month has been interesting and good. Hard and necessary. Beneficial and enjoyable.

I have had to face some of my anxiety issues head on; it became unavoidable. And for those of you who knew I was off work, that issue goes way deeper than what I am going to write about here, so this isn't "why" I was off work, just something that came up during that time. And since this is a public blog, we're going to avoid the "why I was off work" issue. Oh and this is NOT an invitation to ask why I was off, either :)

write the disclaimer. check.


I have had some deep struggles with God these past few years. Well, I've had them longer than a few years, but now, I'm finally admiting it. And it's not so much me struggling with God as me just avoiding the fact that I need to struggle with God. I have been extremely frustrated with not having answers to hard questions. Tough questions that many pastors would avoid... like, how can we know that something is an answer to prayer versus a happening that would have occured even if I was a tree-hugging-must-do-yoga-and-be-one-with-the-earth-athiest? Why, when God promises peace (assurance) of salvation by simply "believing in your heart and confessing with your mouth Jesus is Lord," would someone have to pray for years to receive that peace? How can we be sure there is a heaven when no one (I'm talking no one who is still alive AND I can see face to face) has been there and then came back to say, "Hey earthlings, I've got good news and bad news: Heaven is real. So is hell."

These questions just scratch the surface of what I deal with in my head. Day in and day out, I have questions like this. Sometimes I avoid thinking about them, and other times, I have tearfully poured over these questions with friends and family. But what has remained consistent is this: no matter how much I question or how hard it is for me to have faith (if I have any at all) I KNOW that the Bible is true, God is who he says he is, and even if I don't "get" Him, it doesn't make his Word any less true.

Having said that, I still have to deal with this stuff. God created me and gave me what I'd like to call the "Clark Personality" - I over analyse everything, I want facts, I need things and people to be tangible, and any explanation needs to be logical, to the point and without fluff (hey, I didn't say that is the way that *I* will always explain something to you haha). I wish I had the "uncomplicated" faith type of personality: take things at face value, trust everyone, and believe that everyone around me is doing their best to make everyone else feel warm and fuzzy. Maybe this personality wouldn't be able to debate theology as well, but they wouldn't need to; they know whom they believe in and that is enough for them. Wouldn't that be great!? =) I am jealous of people who are like that!

So, here I sit, needing answers about a God who I know is real and living and true but many of the questions I'm asking don't have the kind of answers that I like to have.

This struggle of mine has freaked some people out... like mom. Don't worry mom, I understand... you are on the outside looking in, seeing me, your daughter, struggle with something that used to be so easy for me. Seeing me making changes in my life and you fear that I won't find my way back to God. I don't blame you for questioning my committment to my faith.
But this whole thing kind of came to a point where I really needed my faith to be real and if it wasn't, I was not going to continue pretending. What would be the point of that? I have a feeling there will be lots of people who went through life doing and saying all the right things, while secretly having questions about what they believe, and someday, they will stand before God, shocked that their name isn't found in the book, because while they were damn good at doing and saying the right thing, they never really trusted God... I don't want that to be me (or anyone for that matter).

So. I decided to ask the questions and stop pretending.
Something I've always known but that has become very apparent to me is this: you can't talk someone into believing in Jesus. Sure, God might use a conversation you have, but it is not something you can talk to someone about, have them repeat a special prayer and bam! saved! Often times those conversations and prayers get the ball rolling and sometimes, God uses those moments to bring people to himself. But when God gets your heart, I am confident that you will just know it. You will have that peace of salvation (even if, for some reason that only God knows, God makes you pray for that peace for years and years). I don't have that peace; which doesn't necessarily mean I'm not "saved" but it concerns me enough to seek that peace. And I might have to pray for it for a while but I am counting on God to deliver on that promise!

And I don't want to be the cookie-cutter Christian. I might read this someday and "lol" that I am saying this, but I doubt it. I want to be *real* because guess what, I have issues. We all do. Yet when you walk into a church many people hide their problems (granted, some issues you want to hide, at least from most people). But I am so tired of the facade. I am tired of people cringing and looking at me funny because I said a bad word (sometimes, I am emotional and I swear because it's the best word that fits in that moment. And YOU do too!!! You may not admit it. You may not say it out loud. But 4 letter words run through your head sometimes. Own up to it. haha). I am tired of people freaking out because I didn't go to church for a week, month or, wait for it, a year. Basically, God didn't give us a check list of do's and don't's on how to live our lives (yes, there are laws and certain things that are sins, but he didn't say: wear skirts, don't go to bars, never dye your hair blue, always judge people who smoke, etc).
So, my goal is this: seek answers to the questions and trust God with the rest. As someone who likes to have total control, this is never going to happen in my lifetime, but hopefully, it will get better. And just as a side note, just because I am writing this post, doesn't mean I am going to get my church clothes out and join a church next week; it doesn't mean I want to talk about this kind of stuff all the time; it doesn't mean I want to pray together or read the Bible together.
It's a step.
Kind of like the AA program... Step 1: Admit you have a problem. Check. I have a problem. A faith problem.

To get to the title of this post... I wanted something to remind me of this endeavor, my "faith journey" if you will... something so that I don't forget. Something that can be a permanant reminder that I choose Jesus, even if he confuses the crap out of me sometimes! So, even though this will cost me $300 when my dad finds out (a whole other topic for another time), I felt it was something I wanted to do... for me... so no one else has to like it because I do.

And so.... since I can't literally write God's Word on my heart, I figured I do the next best thing... put a Christian fish and cross on my foot (in PINK of course).

I know what you are thinking... "You're going to regret that someday." Sure. Maybe. But here's the thing... first, there are bigger things in life to regret. second, even if I regret the permanant marking, I will never regret my reasons for doing it and what it reminds me of.