Play our hearts lament,

Like an Unrehearsed Symphony

I think there is a reason that dust looks dull and gray when resting on a desk,
but shimmers when it falls past the sun coming through your window
I think there is a reason that money is the root of all evil
but allows the poor to be fed and clothed.
I think there is a reason that tears come both when you are overwhelmingly happy,
and when you are terribly sad.

[to continue the movie quotes...]
Crimes and Misdemeanors

"We're all faced throughout our lives with agonizing decisions, moral choices. Some are on a grand scale, most of these choices are on lesser points. But we define ourselves by the choices we have made. We are, in fact, the sum total of our choices."


For the sake of Hollywood

I have a thing for slightly cheesy but (more importantly) well written movie lines.

American Beauty
"It was one of those days when it's a minute away from snowing and there's this electricity in the air, you can almost hear it. And this bag was, like, dancing with me. Like a little kid begging me to play with it. For fifteen minutes. And that's the day I knew there was this entire life behind things, and... this incredibly benevolent force, that wanted me to know there was no reason to be afraid, ever. Video's a poor excuse, I know. But it helps me remember... and I need to remember... Sometimes there's so much beauty in the world I feel like I can't take it, like my heart's going to cave in. "

"I had always heard your entire life flashes in front of your eyes the second before you die. First of all, that one second isn't a second at all, it stretches on forever, like an ocean of time... For me, it was lying on my back at Boy Scout camp, watching falling stars... And yellow leaves, from the maple trees, that lined my street... Or my grandmother's hands, and the way her skin seemed like paper... And the first time I saw my cousin Tony's brand new Firebird... And Janie... And Janie... And... Carolyn. I guess I could be pretty pissed off about what happened to me... but it's hard to stay mad, when there's so much beauty in the world. Sometimes I feel like I'm seeing it all at once, and it's too much, my heart fills up like a balloon that's about to burst... And then I remember to relax, and stop trying to hold on to it, and then it flows through me like rain and I can't feel anything but gratitude for every single moment of my stupid little life... You have no idea what I'm talking about, I'm sure. But don't worry... you will someday."

Breakfast at Tiffanys
"He's all right! Aren't you, cat? Poor cat! Poor slob! Poor slob without a name! The way I see it I haven't got the right to give him one. We don't belong to each other. We just took up one day by the river. I don't want to own anything until I find a place where me and things go together. I'm not sure where that is but I know what it is like. It's like Tiffany's."

"You musn't give your heart to a wild thing. The more you do, the stronger they get, until they're strong enough to run into the woods or fly into a tree. And then to a higher tree and then to the sky."


Hear Me

I saw a painting once, of a boy reaching his hands at the stars.
It's title was "Hear Me"
And the explanation beside it said that the hand placement was close to his face because it was showing a growing confidence.. not in himself but in something outside of him.

The painting made me want to drive out to the middle of the country.. where there are no city lights... where I could reach out at the night sky and say "Hear Me". Then God would look at me, the little speck that I am and say, "No Caroline... Hear Me!" and I would really.. REALLY hear him. Not necessarily in an audible voice.. but in the depths of my being, I would hear him speak to me.


Oh God, save me from my brain

And after all this time, I still haven't learned...

Give yourself a round of applause,
a pat on the back.
Caroline, you have done it again.
Pulled a quick one and saved some face.
It really is shocking to see how after so much has happened,
you still have the audacity to be so prideful.

I can pray for humility for years on end and until
I allow myself to be humbled, my prayers will be in vein.
It's fairly easy to ask things in prayer,
quite another thing to receive the answers.

I keep wanting to give myself ultimatums;
a list of "I will never's", but I know it w
ould end up frustrating me more to look back and see that my demands were not enough-
With another notch in the belt of lessons learned the hard way.

If I could just allow myself to rest assured that nothing is beyond repair, then it would be a lot easier. At the same time, I would like to think that someday I may, with the help of the Lord, be able to do this right.

To all of my friends and family:
once again, I am sorry. I'm sure it won't be the last time I let you down. If anything, pray that I learn from my mistakes.


What it all boils down to... is that I don't have it all figured out just yet

I seem to have this terrible habit of working myself up about things... letting them own my mind until it reaches this ridiculous level of idolatry.
Not healthy.
I just want God to scoop me up and tell me I am lovable despite my flaws. (How odd, for me to crave something that I don't even come close to deserving- evidence to prove my vast need)
I have this unfortunately dark wall built up around me. It's several inches thick, several feet high. When I started building it, I did a great job of making sure it surrounded me entirely- so that no one could really get in.. I had no idea I was caging myself in, in the process of keeping people out.
I have gotten really good at pretending it doesn't exist... It's when I get good at destructive behavior that God starts to pull the floor boards out from under me. Ignoring it isn't working anymore.
There's that ridiculous phrase that people use all the time "I just need someone to tear down my walls"
I can't even begin to tell you the countless hours I have wasted either waiting for them to be torn down or watching people try...
No person can tear these walls down.
I have to do it myself.
But I have no idea how to go about that.
That's the thing about walls of the mind rather than of concrete.
Things of substance are easily built and easily destroyed.
But walls of the mind... they are something different entirely

I need to remember the divinity of love rather than the forever empty well of filth that the media depicts in it's place. I want to unabashedly cry my eyes out for no reason except to rid myself of this disillusionment and frailty.

Thank you silence.



She looked at him and said,
"I could never fake weeping. Every time I cry for anything, I cry for everything else that has ever hurt me, and everyone I have ever hurt in return."



Setting: Under the Jackson Street Bridge
Tempurature: 30 degrees
Occasion: Lost Sheep
Time: 7-8 oclock

Michael Terry:
A homeless man in his mid 40's. Long redish hair, dull cigarette hanging from his mouth, not overly dirty.

MT: (motioning with a gloved hand) "Hello.. can I talk to you for a second"
me: yeah sure, Hi, I'm Caroline. What's your name? (shake hands)
MT:" Michael.. my name is Michael Terry, it's nice to meet you."
(I proceed to sit on the ground)
me: "so what's up?"
MT: "I was just wondering how long it took you to grow your hair that long. How old are you anyway? Like 18? How far did you have to drive to get here?"
me: "Well, I'm 21. It took me about five minutes to drive here, and my hair grows really fast.. I actually got it cut a few months ago."
MT: "NO WAY!!!! I've been growing my hair out for 20 years longer than you have and mine still isn't that long! I wonder why mens hair doesn't grow as fast as womens??"
me: "I have no idea. Maybe it's because women are always cold so they need long hair to keep them warm.. (my attempt at a joke) who knows... So where are you from?"
MT: "Arkansas, I got here 2 months ago and I'm actually homeless now because I just had my third divorce."
me: "I'm sorry, that must be rough. But you picked a fun city! Knoxville is great, especially when it's warm."
MT: "Yeah, I really like meeting new people. People here are fascinating. I like getting to know people's territory. Do you like to meet new people?"
me: "Yes, I love meeting new people. I have met some really amazing people here."
MT: "Well, save your spendings for a rainy day friend. You don't want to end up out here.. it will make you old before your time."
me:"I will try my best. It was really nice to meet you. See you next week?"
MT: "Definitely! Have a good week friend."

It's simple conversations like these that make me want to go back week after week.
I love the honesty of the people I meet there. What would it be like to talk to everyone you passed by? Telling them things like how hard divorces are, and how lonely life on the streets is... I hope one day I can learn to be as honest and friendly as the poor.


pretend it's for you

Whenever it snows,
I pretend that it snows just for me...
That God just knew that I loved it so much. So he made the clouds do one thing
and the temperature drop and *POOF* SNOW!
It's nearly impossible for me to be in a bad mood when it's snowing.

For Warning... this blog entry is completely pointless... nothing really thought out..just a mix of excitement and wanting to move my fingers over a key board.

Snow makes everything look good. It covers the trash gathered in the gutters, the oil spills on the road, the dead plants, and on and on and on.

I wish I had a big puffy snow suit. (That would be oh so attractive) I would sit outside all day in the snow. And drink hot chocolate with French Vanilla Kaluah (my new favorite drink)

It should be illegal to drive when it snows... all those tire marks making a mockery of the perfectly white streets.


Project # 1 Caramelized Banana with Rum Sauce

I'm not one for New Years Resolutions


I decided that it is not a bad idea to try new things at the beginning of a new year.
SO, here is my list of things to do (its liable to change at any given moment)

1. Cook/Bake more.
2. Run every other day.
3. Find a mentor in Knoxville.
4. Compile a list of questions and get an interview with Professor Roger M. Nooe asking him about his endeavors with homeless people in Knoxville.
5. Learn to let go of my schedule, aka stop planning everything down to the minute.
6. Map out the road trip of my dreams and start saving up for it.
7. Read my camera manual.
8. Purchase.. or borrow a bike and ride it regularly.
9. Climb more tree's.
10. Be more intentional with my friends.


Learning to love the differences

One of my favorite things in the world is listening to someone wise speak. Tonight, I went to a church service at "All Souls" church (which I'm absolutely enthralled by). There is something about getting back to the simplicity of life and learning to delve into the basics. The sermon tonight was about how the church of America has this tendency to hate, fear, or dis-respect people who are not "Christians". What we so commonly forget, is that our objective is not to argue our way into converting people. We have nothing to "prove" per say. We have adopted this "us vs. them" mindset about those who do not share our beliefs. What we so easily lose sight of is the fact that we are not supposed to run away from the dominant culture> It is inescapable. If all of us were to leave... what hope would we leave behind? In the Hebrew language, the phrase "to fear God" means to obey him, to respond to him, to worship him. If God is calling you do something... DO IT! The text that was used tonight was from Jonah and the whole point of it was written as a challenge, a challenge to reevaluate the way we think of non-Christians. It was a way of addressing prejudice. What is humbling, as the pastor pointed out, is that many non-christians are seeking God, or some higher power harder and more often than some Christians are.
Three things were proposed in the talk tonight...
1.That we can learn a tremendous amount from non-christians
-If all people are made in the image of God, then God is at work in all people, regardless of their beliefs.
2. We can partner with non-christians in projects, or organizations peacefully
-true, there is a fine line, but if we have a common bond, we can work along side non-christians who have similar passions
3. We need to rethink the language we use for non-Christians and our present culture
-we can acknowledge differences while treating them as brothers and sisters
-we can emphasize love for strangers
-we can talk more about Jesus than Satan
-we can be more welcoming rather than shunning

*We need to recognize difference of faith and difference in opinion as what it is and not as an attack on us. We are so quick to jump on the defensive and argue until we feel as though we have convinced others that we are right and they are wrong. We will be able to better serve our city if we learn to see ourselves as comrades rather than enemies.