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this is a better picture of jack in his halloween costume than what you had previously seen. the latest news is that he is saying yee-haw like a cowboy. well, sort of. actually its a bit more like two completely seperated words, yee and haw. it is said much like this, "yeeeeee....(wait for it...wait for it...wait for it...) haw. so cute.

so i read today that God wants to be a blessing in our lives. God wants to be a blessing? its incredible, really. we can grow imagining God being so ready to punish, so much like santa claus with naughty and nice lists. i remember thinking how easy it was for me to slip back to the naughty list after trying so hard to get on the nice one. i remember realizing how prone i was to disappoint. and i can also remember, once i got a little older, how that realization quickly turned to fear of hell and an eternal bottomless pit (can a bottomless pit be anything other than eternal, by definition?). so it wasn't hard to imagine God as angry, or at least vindictive. i saw God as righteous and just. i thought God had every right to be disappointed in me. i was, after all, continually doing the wrong thing. and there's that shame thing again, which i talked about yesterday. i was ashamed. afraid to be in the presence of a righteously angry judge-God who had every right to punish. and so i hid. i have hidden behind all manner of walls, afraid of real intimacy, because really being known means being a disappointment, and i am just hard-wired to absolutly abhor the idea of being a disappointment. i am desperately afraid of it. so, shame compels me to put on airs, to put on a facade, to put on a show, to put on masks, and to put on clothes. i am dressed in shame.

and yet, i believe in a God of grace. i believe in a father God who wants to be a blessing to his children. God offers discipline, sure, but always in love, and just as sure as God will discipline, God will also listen to us and play with us, or tickle us, or whatever it is we do when we are at our best as parents, when we are a blessing to our children. we are not harsh judges over them, waiting to pounce with punishment. we are in love with them, waiting to celebrate with them every little accomplishment.

that's a blessing.


ps. i didn't vote today, for the first time ever since i've been of voting age. i feel like a failure as a citizen.

pps. while i am typing this, i am not listening to the noise of the pundits and celebration and concession speeches. that just makes me feel guilty. instead, the national geographic channel is doing a special on the history and evolution of toilets, or commodes as we call them in western pa. thought you might want to know that.


taryn said…
this was the first election i was of legal age to vote. pretty stoked about that. anyway... i had an election results party in the lounge with my floormates and from that experience id like to remind you that most of what the politicians say in their speeches is the equivalent to what is housed in the commodes which you were learning about on the history channel. so basically its all the same anyway. don't feel like a failure as a citizen.
Crafty P said…
good thoughts today, Greg.

glad I can comment and comment often!

I call them toilets, but more often "the potty" these days. I believe the school teachers I had growing up used the word commode. I am a western pa-er, too.

seems like I've been sending you quite a bit of traffic, lately! that's fun.

we've been listening a lot to our music channel on the tv called Big Band and Swing. Puts us ALL in a upbeat mood.
cathyQ said…
Okay, so you toatally lied and said it was super easy to blog; all I'd have to do click on comment and leave a comment. You said nothing about username, pasword or choosing an identity. I don't know if I'm a blogger, other, or anonymous! I'm having a crises. What's a beta? I don't have a google account. I'm a total loser. Anyway, you might or might not get this depending on whether or not I successfully blog corrrectly.

I always vote, but voting anything other than the straight Democratic ticket in Western Pa is a waste of time anyway, so I try not to feel too guilty if I don't make it to the polls. I did vote on Tuesday, but every single person I voted for lost. I guess that makes me a loser too. I told you!

I think I grew up with commode but have switched to toilet at least sometimes. Other times I might just call it a porcelain throne, potty, pooper, pee place, cold seat, or "resting area." Does it really matter? What REALLY matters is whether or not the toilet paper is unwound from the top or the bottom! I say bottom all the way! My vote is the only one that counts in this election, at least in my family since I seem to be the only one that actually knows how to put the new roll on anyway.

Okay, let me just say that Jack is the cutest kid I've ever seen (with the exceptions of Greg, Julie and Mary of course). I am not biased in any way. Come on did you see those big brown eyes, blond hair, cowboy hat and moustache? (By the way, I should say that I am Greg's mom, and that also makes me Jack's grandma.)
Teta Maria said…
Yeah mom! you are a blogger. a dang good one at that. Jack is beating my childhood cuteness 10 to 1. man. but i cant deny him his crown....
greg. said…
mom - congratulations! i am so proud of you! welcome to the blogosphere! its really not that hard, is it. cmon.

i have a confession to make. i used to be a "unwind the commode paper from the bottom" kind of person, but shannon has converted me. now its the top. always the top. sometimes i try putting it on the bottom, but it just gets switched to the top. its a losing battle here. so i have given in. hope i haven't let you down.

greg. said…
taryn - i bet american was pretty excited about the election and the results, eh? election day must be fun there.

next week at this time i will be seeing don miller again!

Julie said…
sorry i'm delayed on the posts...but I must admit that i, too, have switched to the top-unroll. it seems to be easier than reaching underneath. i guess when i lost my original last name i also lost my toilet paper identity.
greg. said…
sad, julie. really quite sad. you have compromised your very identity.

tsk tsk.

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