Thursday, December 30, 2010

brand new

Well 2010, it's been fun. 
You've been full of some crazy memories that I'll treasure forever (or try, to no avail, to forget), but all good things must come to an end. And I'm planning bigger and better things for 2011... okay, not really. I'm actually  ditching a traditional list of resolutions because honestly, it just ends up being a list of things in my back drawer that I never actually accomplish. Instead I want to put these reminders someplace I'll see them often enough to not forget. 

Love people. It's the strongest and simplest way to show you care.
"By this all people will know that you are My disciples, by your love for one another." 
-John 13:35

Growing up is inevitable. So instead of having a Peter Pan complex, I'll mature like a normal human being while staying young at heart. :) 

Do-overs don't happen in real life. This chance might be the only one, so live it up. You only get one life, so make it count. It doesn't mean everything will be perfect, though. Screwing up is the only reminder we get that we're not perfect. Make mistakes, and make them often. Just know what to do with them. 

Nothing worth having comes easily. 

Apathy is a dangerous state of mind. Lack of feeling leads to indifference, which is a thousand times worse than hate. Better to feel something, be it hate or heatbreak, gaiety or apprehension, than to be completely devoid of emotion. 

Thursday, December 2, 2010

what am I doing here?

I've been thinking about this blog a lot recently... what am I doing with it, what kind of things are people taking away, but mostly what kind of influence I'm having.
When I first started out, I thought it'd just be something fun for me to do and for my friends to get updates about me through college. It's not like I'm trying to brag about having 80 followers or anything, because that's hardly anything, but it's still crazy that anyone wants to read it. But then I started thinking, here are 80 people who I don't even really know, but are reading things I'm saying. Each of them has their own blog where they further affect other people.

So why is it I say such meaningless stuff on here?

I really do love being a part of "the hipster generation", but we're so selfish. Many people are doing awesome things to help others, but there are so many more who just sit around being cynical and sarcastic on their blogs, twitter, tumblr, whatever -- ranting about fashion faux pas, the joys of cupcakes, who has the snazziest polaroid camera, edgy tattoos, bands no one has heard of... and I'm not trying to separate myself from all that, because I have definitely been the same way about so many things. And there's nothing wrong with any of these things... but why let them take up our lives?
What's it all worth?


There are people dying on the other side of the world from starvation, while we sit here in America becoming vegan because it's the new fad. 20,000 kids died today. And will tomorrow. And the next day.

I've never been a huge fan of Bono, but what he said about our generation was like a slap in the face.

"There is a continent—Africa—being consumed by flames.
I truly believe that when the history books are written, our age will be remembered for three things.
the war on terror, the digital revolution, and what we did—or did not do—to put the fire out in Africa.
History, like God, is watching what we do."

I went to a concert last night where the band members were trying to get a hundred children from Africa sponsored. I sat there for a few minutes thinking of how great it would be to be able to sponsor a kid, but then my selfishness took over. I'm a college student, I thought. the "broke college student" card. Yes, I'm ashamed to say I played it. I hear this so many times every day. But look around at your fellow students - what are they driving? Do they have a nice phone or ipod? What about their clothes? Again, I'm not saying these things are bad. But can we honestly call ourselves a broke college student when we have an iTouch, name brand jeans, and have a car? Even if you don't have any of those things, what about shoes? Most people in third world countries don't even have one pair. I'd be willing to guarantee that every one of us has at least 4 or 5 pairs.
Let's be honest with ourselves - we are NOT BROKE.
I'm not really sure what I'm trying to accomplish with this post. I'm not trying to guilt trip you into feeling like a wealthy, luxurious American who should give up all your possessions and go sponsor a child... well... maybe I am. ;) Last night after the initial thoughts of doubt, I just gave up. I signed up to be a sponsor without thinking it through and overanalyzing like I usually do. I don't know if I'm going to be able to afford to come back to college next semester, but I know I have $35 a month to spare for someone who needs food. And it was one of the most amazing experiences of my life. I don't know how, but I know I'm never going to struggle to find that money. So I really, really, really would encourage anyone to do this - it's such a simple way to make a difference. [Both world vision and compassion international have sponsorship programs, it takes about 2 minutes to sign up]
But even more than that, if you will, just think a minute about the impact you're making - with your words, with your blog, your facebook, your twitter, whatever. Don't get me wrong, I love posting lovely pictures I've found, quotes I like, about favorite movies and musicians, clothes, things I want, etc. But just think about the influence we can have on the hundreds of friends (followers?) we have that will read what we're saying.
So I challenge you to take a hiatus from your usual blogging. Don't post about the newest fashion fad and how cute it is. Don't post about an artsy movie. Don't post about your newest etsy find. Instead post something meaningful. Something lasting. It's up to you what that is. :)