Sunday, October 18, 2009
Song of the Day: Ingrid Michaelson, "Are We There Yet?"
I think you all know how much I love Ingrid Michaelson. If you don't. I'll tell you right now. I love her. A lot. She has an irresistibly sweet voice, which flutters like a dove across the darlingist tunes in indie music. And her lyrics are poetry. Wistful, melancholic poetry sprinkled like sour sugar over gummy candy melodies. Her music just hits this string in my angsty, wistful, hopelessly romantic heart. I listen to her little voice and her little ukelele and I want to dance and cry and laugh and sigh all at once. She was in Seattle on Monday and, being the penniless newcomer that I am right now, I waited to buy my tickets until I had sufficient monies and friends to invite along. In the meantime, the show sold out.*
Anyway... there is a point to this sad story. Over the course of my first few weeks here, God has given me countless bits of confirmation that this is where he's called me. That this city, this apartment, this internship-- all of these are exactly where I'm supposed to be. One of those affirmations came this morning, when the pastor at the church I've been visiting preached a message on Acts 20-- Paul's tearful goodbye to the Ephesian elders, the friends he lived amongst for three years, dear friends he knows he will never see again.
But just in case a whole sermon on the idea of moving just because God's called you somewhere else wasn't enough of a cosmic nod in my direction. God threw a little icing on the cake for me. The 50 year old (I note age here because my father is 50 and pretty much just listens to James Taylor and Toby Keith) pastor began the message with a quote from an Ingrid Michaelson song (and blogged about it, I might add).
A nudge and a wink. Oh you're funny, Lord.
Did I also mention that this weekend was homecoming back at the alma mater? And that, though I certainly hope that I will at least see the faces of my best friends again soon, I'm beginning to come to terms with the knowledge that the relationships I had in college are different now. Stronger, I really think. But much more difficult.
It is hard for me to read the end of Acts 20 without crying. I read 21:1 and the words "after we had torn ourselves away from them" hit me square in the chest. Every time I hang up the phone these days, I'm on the verge of tears. And yet I know--without any doubts--that I am supposed to be in this place. That there is work to do here. Relationships to build. People to love and care for.
One final anecdote and I'll make my point: on Friday, I mentioned to my supervisor that I was really enjoying the people I had met at my church, that the women in my bible study seemed very genuine and deep and that I was looking forward to new friendships outside the theatre. He responded that that was something he envied about people of faith. That they could move anywhere and find a niche within weeks. I've been thinking about this some. And about today's message on the role of the Christian as a sojourner, constantly moving, changing, adapting.
Though I see the seeds of a life here, I can't help but feel a little bit like a carpetbagger.
As always, Ingrid asks what's on my road-weary heart:
They say that home is where the heart is
I guess I haven't found my home
And we keep driving round in circles
Afraid to call this place our own
They say there's linings made of silver
Folded inside each raining cloud
Well, we need someone to deliver
Our silver lining now
And are we there yet?
Home, home, home
And, in Ephesians 2, Paul answers:
For he himself is our peace... Consequently, you are no longer foreigners and aliens, but fellow citizens with God's people and members of God's household, built on the foundations of the apostles and prophets with Christ Jesus himself as the chief cornerstone. In him the whole building is joined together and rises to become a holy temple in the Lord. And in him you too are being built together to become a dwelling in which God lives by his spirit.
*I am almost as devastated by this as I am by the fact that I passed up on Ben Folds tickets with the rationale that though he's one of my favorites, I've seen him twice before and can't really spare 30 dollars right now. Then I found out that he's playing tuesday's (now sold out) show with The Seattle Symphony. (Whyyyyyy, LORD, why!?)