Friday, July 22, 2005

I have officially moved!!!! Please check out my site at http://www.stephssecrets.blogspot.com

See you there!!!

Wednesday, May 11, 2005

Breaking the Silence

Last night an anonymous comment was left over at think sink which resulted into a bit of a mini blogging world argument. While I wont go into much detail about the argument, I did want to touch on something that was said that completely took me a back. One of the bloggers involved made a comment about how she was “not a compassionate Christian” and how she is a, “let ‘em burn in hell” kind of Christian. My first thought upon reading that was- whoa. Immediately I wanted to judge her for her statement, as I thought it was completely off the wall, but though it took restraint, I stopped myself. I know that I do no have the right to judge; I wouldn’t want to get another case of log eye again!

And so I went to bed. This morning, I woke up, the conversation still running through my head. I started to think, what kind of Christian am I? I would love with all my heart to say that I am the “reflect the love of Christ in everything I do, and spread the good news” Christian like Paula, but I knew that wasn’t true. I definitely don’t just want ‘em to burn, so that wasn’t true either. I realized that I’ve become a rather quiet Christian, and I am not proud of that. It seems as though my silence is doing the same thing as the person who offended me by saying, “let ‘em burn in hell”. My friends, and family who haven’t been saved, and yes even strangers who I may or may not get along with, if I do not show them the love of God and spread the good news to them, then what am I doing to further the kingdom? Nothing.

I know that if it hadn’t been for the “reflect the love of Christ in everything I do and spread the good news” Christians in my life, I would have been on a straight path to Crispyville, destined to spend my life burning.

I’ve got to say I think Satan must love the quiet Christians, just as much as the let em burn Christians, because if anything, they are contributing more to his cause then to the kingdom of God. That’s a hard statement to swallow, knowing that I have been quiet for so long, but I know now that I need to make a change and learn to reflect the love of Christ in everything I do, and to spread the good news of Christ and what he has done in my life.

One thing that I have learned during my walk, is that as a Christian, I should be striving to be more like Jesus in everything I do. With that said, when Jesus hung on the cross, He did not do so in complete silence, He did not condemn the people to burn in hell, He simply said, “Father forgive them, for they know not what they do.” If that isn’t a statement of His love and grace for us, I don’t know what is.

What kind of Christian are you?

Monday, April 25, 2005

A Bad Case of Log Eye

This morning as I came downstairs with my paperwork, I met head on with an employee of another company in a doorway. I was already partly through the door, and seeing the pile of paperwork I was carrying in my arms decided to hold the door open for me. I nodded my head and thanked him as I walked through the door, and as the door slowly shut, I hear a sarcastic and annoyed voice abruptly say “Hey! No problem!”

He didn’t hear me say thanks- I realized. And thus he came out with the sarcastic “you’re welcome” type comment as he apparently felt the need to point out to me my apparent “rudeness”. As I walked down the hallway I muttered something about already saying thank you to that jerk.

See if you know me, you probably don’t need to read this sentence, but for those of you who don’t- Things like that bother me. I normally overanalyze just about everything and can get easily….miffed. With that said I began to think about what had just transpired. I wondered if this guy (who I walk by quite often) will always walk by and think about me being a rude person. Would I be labeled by this person based on this one encounter and judged because of that even though it was HIM who didn’t hear me? What gives him the right- I thought to myself, who does he think he is?

I remember when I used to be a Brownie, we would do “good deeds”. The idea of is was we were supposed to do something nice for someone else, without being asked, and without expecting anything in return. So as I thought about this man who was so aggravated that he didn’t get the appreciation he felt he deserved, I though to myself, who’s he doing the nice things for? If you expect something in return (even if its simply appreciation) are you not just serving yourself?

Then God- My intervener- challenged me. As I heard the words ringing clear as day in my mind, I knew God was asking me.

Who are YOU serving?

“Do not judge, so that you may not be judged. For with the judgment you make you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get. Why do you see the speck in your neighbor’s eye, but do not see the log in your own eye? Or how can you say to your neighbor, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ while the log is in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your neighbor’s eye.” Matthew 7:1-5

I began to think about my own life and about how I serve God. If I serve because I want God to see that I am doing works for him, if I serve because I want God to recognize what I do- then I am not serving God at all. I am serving myself. If ever I have an expectation that someone should thank me for what I have done, then I have stopped serving them. I am serving myself. I am not saying it is wrong thank others, but I do think it is self-serving to expect rewards, be they intrinsic or extrinsic, in return for service.

I do also realize that perhaps, I had a bad case of log eye….

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Happy Birthday to You!

Please join me in singing 'Happy Birthday to You' to my beautiful and talented Aunt, and Friend, Darlene.

*start singing everyone!*

~Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birthday dear Darlene, Happy birthday to you.

May God bless you, may God bless you, may God bless and keep you the whole year through!~


May your 40th year be filled with

Happy times
Many laughs
Inspiration to write
A published book
Many a shoe store guy checking you out
All the fun of still being young
And all the wisdom that comes with age
And last- but certainly the greatest of all these things- Blessings, grace, and a relationship with God that will continue to grow closer and closer…

Happy 40th Dar!

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

I (heart) (maple leaf) (Cow leg)

So after feeling out of the loop for so long, Jeff was kind enough to interview me. Without any further ado, here it is.

1. Bigger Jerk, Anonymous commenter on your post "Zork the Car Thief", or Bob the new hire? Follow up question: since you've never seen them together, have you considered the possibility that they are one and the same person?

“Atheist I can handle- Alien I cannot- so as long as you’re not green and chasing me you’re welcome to comment anytime.”

I would have to say that Bob the new hire is the bigger jerk. The way I see it is, I can handle some anonymous troller who means basically nothing to me in the grand scheme of things telling me I’m a lousy poet, and a dumb @ss because I may very well be- I really don’t know… Bob however wins the prize for king jerk for the simple reason that I can exercise a lot more patience and control when I am writing then I can do in person. Bob really took it upon himself to test that patience for the 3 miserable days that he lasted here. Lucky for me he quit before he finished training, or I’m sure that stapler would have left bruise on his forehead by now.

I would honestly doubt however that bob is the one that left the comment, simply because I doubt that Bob could have formed a complete sentence, let alone operate a complex piece of technology such as a computer….but then again, maybe I’m just bitter toward him…

2. Since you obviously live near Darlene, I'm assuming you're also Canadian. Do you like the Canadian healthcare system? In your experiences, has it been fair (accessible)? Effective (gotten good results)? Efficient (timely)?

Canadian healthcare eh? Yes- the system is great (In theory), and I do believe that it is fair, (in theory), but In my personal experience, I have not seen it to be effective (in Theor- oh no wait, this parts true). Ok- the biggest problem with Canadian healthcare is that Canada can only pay its doctors what our taxes will allow, so we find that many of student doctors getting their degrees and moving to the states because $ca-ching$ They can make a bundle more. (at least I’ve heard this is the case). So we get the leftovers, and though I’m sure there are some good doctors out there- I haven’t encountered them. Personally, I’ve only encountered the type that couldn’t tell the bruise on Bob the new hire’s head if they were there when I threw the stapler. Of course with that said- if I ever had a heart attack or something seriously wrong with me, I will thank my lucky stars that I live here in Canada, our true north strong and FREE!

3. Better Canadian export to the US: cheap pharmaceuticals, or mad cow disease? Follow up question: better import from the US: draft-dodgers or Fox News Channel?

It might interest you to know that during the mad cow scare a bumper sticker company made a fortune with I love Canadian beef bumper stickers/t-shirts/fridge magnets etc… (Actually they were more like I (heart) (Maple leaf) (cow head). At the same time the radio stations spewed out strange but interesting tidbits of information such as,

*official reporter voice* “The threat of Mad Cow is only present if you eat the brain of the cow or part of the nervous system, so as long as you avoid such foods as ground beef and hotdogs, the risk is very minimal.”

EEEEWWWW! Remind me not to eat any hot dogs….. (maybe I should change the bumper sticker to I (heart) (maple leaf) (Cow leg) or something a little safer then the head!)

I think the better export would have to be the cheap pharmaceuticals, because maybe if we give you guys down there enough cheap prescriptions and get you doped up enough, you would buy more of our mad co- er, um, I mean Canadian beef…

The better import without a doubt is Fox. I mean for the longest time it was my only way of watching the Simpson’s, and they still plays it more then any Canadian station does! I just have to make sure not to leave the TV in the bedroom on if I watch it at night, otherwise when I get up at 2 am to go pee, some lady in a swimsuit will either be telling me to “pick up the phone"… Or I will get sucked into buying the Ronco food dehydrator, or the Chef Tony knife set. Oooohhh I love infomercials:)

4. What is under your kitchen sink right now? And is any of it alive?

Garbage bags, generic cleaner, a dish rack, a basin, some bleach. Well that’s what I can see from a far anyways, and I’m a little worried of what could be living near the back- so I try to leave it alone.

I really liked the “what’s on your desk" question that some others got, so I figured I would answer that one too.
A monitor
a keyboard
a phone
a message pad
a mouse
a clock
a “Barrel of Monkeys monkey”
a Spongebob Squarepants water bottle
another water bottle
a bottle of iced tea
a Tim’s green tea
an in/out tray
two packages of sweet and low
some post it notes
two file organizers
2 note spindlesmy ID badges complete with spongebob lanyard
a Patrick Pez dispenser
my pens
my Spongebob pencil
my trusty stapler
and of course, my 'to do' pile.

5. More important behavior in a man: opening/holding the door for you, or putting the toilet seat back down?

I honestly didn’t know they were capable of either. When I try and tell my husband to put the toilet seat down, he replies by saying,

“I need the seat up when I pee, do you put the seat up when you’re finished?”

So I gave up on that battle.

I guess now that the interview is complete, I’m supposed to interview 5 people, so if you would like to be interviewed by me leave a comment and let me know and I will get the questions out to you.

Thursday, March 31, 2005

Remember that time when...

One of my favorite phrases in the world would have to be,

“Do you remember the time when…”

It wasn’t until I was sitting in the food court with Darlene picking apart a chicken finger and tossing it into my dish of poutine that got a greater understanding of why I love it so much. Darlene quoted me something that she had read that said,

“The past is beautiful because one never realizes an emotion at the time. It expands later, and thus we don’t have complete emotions about the present, only about the past.”- Virginia Woolf

We of course started joking about it right away reminiscing about the events that just happened a few minutes ago like,

“Remember that time we shared a chubby chicken meal at the food court?”

“Remember that time we stood in line at A&W?”

“Remember that time we remembered that time?”

When I got to think about it more seriously I realized how much truth is in this statement. My best friend and I spend so much of out time saying “remember that time when…” to each other and laughing hysterically about it that I sometimes wonder if we will ever create new memories. Little do we know these memories and emotions that are being created right now, though not seeming so strong at the time, can become so funny that you find yourself spitting coffee in your sister’s ear, (just as Tammy has done) or laughing in a customers ear while reading an email from me (as she has also done).

Tammy has lived in about 6 or 7 places since I met her some 7 years ago in high school. We would talk now and then in the cafeteria but never really hung out. Finally we decided it would be a great idea to hang out after school and to tell you the truth, we have been best friends ever since. When we would first hang out after school, we would laugh and joke about things that happened at school. When she Moved to house number 2 the phrase, “remember that time…” was introduced into our friendship, and is now probably the most overused phrase that we say together! It wasn’t until about apartment number 4 that one of us finally realized that whenever she would move, we would spend the time in the new apartment reminiscing about the last one and the events that surrounded that “era” of our friendship. As strange as it sounds, it was almost as if the memories that we were creating at the time were off limits until she moved again.

This really makes me think about what heaven must be like. If every day that emotion of your love grows stronger, imagine after thousands of years how much love for the Lord must be built up. Perhaps this is why angels are always depicted as glowing or radiating light- perhaps they have simply spent so much time with God and they are so full of love that they beam with it. God has loved you since the day that you were conceived, imagine how much that love had grown and expanded over the ages. That love is so strong and so plentiful that you could wrap the world in it, and keep warm on the coldest winters night.

A few days ago, I was telling Trevor that when I get to Heaven, I would want to tell Jesus a joke so funny that he would squirt cream soda out of his nose- Trevor simply replied,

“He’s probably heard it already…”

“Darn” I thought. Then I turned to him and said,

“You know what I would love to do then? I’d love to sit with Jesus and say, remember that time when…”

What's your favorite memory?

Blessings,

Steph

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Please Remember...

Easter is fast approaching and with Good Friday just a few days away- I knew I needed to post.

Yesterday, as I was walking through the mall with my best friend I began to look around at all the shops. Almost every one of them was decorated In a nauseating pastel rainbow of eggs, bunnies, baby chicks, and all things Commercially “Easter”, As I walked through the center court of the mall, an overgrown bunny was waving at children, hoping to lure them in for a sit on his lap- and of course, the overpriced under quality picture that would then accompany it.

As I began to get lost in this whirlwind of commercialized Easter, I began wondering to myself- Where in the world is Jesus in all of this? It wasn’t until I was in the very back of a tiny little shop that I finally found something to do with Jesus, and strangely enough- it was nowhere near the Easter collection! He’s the REASON we celebrate Easter- yet apparently he wasn’t good enough to make it to the front of the store for the Easter display!

It scares me that people can get so lost in the commercialized Hallmark version of Easter that they forget about our savior, so I beg you- In the midst of all the bunnies and Eggs, chicks and chocolates, Easter egg hunts and family dinners- remember Jesus. Remember that he suffered and died so that you may find eternal life with God. I don’t know when Easter ever became about bunnies and eggs and being gouged on cheap chocolates, but I can tell you this-Jesus wasn’t crucified In a bunny suit- and I’m sure He didn’t hide chocolate eggs in pretty pastel foil In the tomb when He rose! Remember this gift he has blessed you with- because at the end of the day, when the chocolates are eaten, and the decorations are gone- the gift of salvation will remain.

Have a wonderful and Christ filled Easter.

Blessings,

Steph


Steph