Living the questions and trying to think theologically... and practically. Learning that these things are more synonymous than I once thought.

Location: Dallas, TX

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Reading Anne LaMott Makes You Want to Attempt Great Writing, So Here's My Attempt

I've spent four nights in a row in the big city, all by myself. Other than the traffic on 75, it doesn't feel all that big. I unpack, cook for myself, and try to figure out how in the heck to work my dvr. Much of my time is spent on my little balcony. I like it there. There is a lovely tree right in front of it, and it's a nice shady spot. For extra ambiance, I hung decorative wind chimes and two hanging baskets of impatience which happen to grow very nicely in the shade. It is my own personal treehouse. It feels more like Mississippi than Texas in some ways. I put my white rocking chair out there. I drink sweet tea and read Anne LaMott. I think about how the past and the present meld into the comedy of that moment. Each reality shapes me into the person I am. For now at least, I like not fitting into people's definition of a belle or a feminist. Being a little of both makes for an entertaining dance.

The past few days have been sort of a working vacation. There's nothing I've had to get done, but at the same time there is plenty of work to do, plenty of movies to watch, and plenty of time to reflect. Living alone has been kind of fun thus far, but it's also been very similar to a long weekend. Still, I would like to think that all the good things and good people from the past three years have made me a better more secure person. Not that I'm totally free of insecurity. I mean, is anyone ever really completely secure in themselves? I feel as though I've made some pretty big strides, thanks of course to my community.

I loved that Kyle often used insecurity as his default example sin. When giving a hypothetical example about sin, most pastors would use fornication, drunkenness, or lying. You know, the really obvious stuff it's easy to nail people for. I remember Kyle talking about insecurity on several occasions. It's a problem for most of us, but you rarely get called to the carpet for it. In a place that puts so much value on being who you really are, I guess it's harder to hide things like that. I can't explain exactly how it happened, but I know I am a more secure person after my time at UBC. Maybe because I really did grow spiritually there without feeling such pressure to be something unattainable. Maybe it's because I was reminded that insecurity is a huge hindrance to living life to the fullest. Or maybe it's because when you start to value the people around you more and more, you get lost in this beautiful buzzword/reality of community, and you worry a lot less about petty personal problems. You don't feel as though you're standing naked on a stage with the world laughing at every physical flaw, slip of the tongue, or stupid story you tell. You begin to see yourself as a part of a cast- an eclectic, beautiful mix of people that oddly complement each other and together tell a breath-taking story.

Anne LaMott says that she's never gone very far from her church because it helps her to find her way home. I love that. It resonates, but I am not sure it can be quite as true for me. I think my friends in Waco will always help me to remember where and what home is, although I'm not sure I'll always be in close proximity. I am forever grateful for that. I hope that no matter where life takes me, I'll be a part of giving people that same sense of home.


Anonymous beth said...

beautiful my friend...

1:01 PM  
Blogger Myles said...

i love anne lamott for her writing; she frustrates me, and i always try to defend her, sometimes when she is indefensible. but still, i'll read whatever she puts out. hope dallas is good.

8:43 AM  
Blogger greenISgood said...


We missed you in Dallas this weekend when we picked up Linz at DFW and then ate at the incredibly delectable delicious and delightful - MAGGIANO'S - at NorthPark Mall. You missed out, girl.

I'm jealous you can run out and get a piece of cheesecake at the CHzCk Factory - but we've got Healthcamp here, so don't be jealous of us....

Robert, Betz & AnnieLangston

10:31 AM  
Blogger Michael said...

Consider this as evidence of the Church that will never let you go. No matter how far away you are we will always be there to remind you of the Community of Faith that has Faith in You. Hope things are well.

5:44 PM  

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