Showing posts with label writing. Show all posts
Showing posts with label writing. Show all posts

Thursday, July 6, 2017

just be



well by golly it's july.
woaahhhhhhhh.

this summer, i'm challenging myself.
i'm challenging myself to not set all these giant goals.
i'm trying to not set big expectations.
i'm working on taking each day at a time, while still being mindful of how today will affect the future.

because in our mad stampede to have perfect Instagram-y, perfect beach-y hair, crossed off everything on the checklist, perfect food filled days, it's hard to just be.
at at some point, we all have to realize it's good (even healthy!) to stop doing and start being.

it's hard to enjoy life when you're so focused on enduring it perfectly.
it's hard to enjoy life when your checklist never shortens, day after day after day.
it's hard to enjoy life when you can't find time for the most important things.

today, take a moment to "be."
feel your lungs inflate and deflate with air.
hear the birds chirp.
let the sky shine on you.
and remember what a precious privilege it is to just be.


p.s. i got to hold puppies this week so yeah. be jealous. 

Thursday, June 8, 2017

chasing pink sky

today I am so cranky.
I've been a jerk and fought with my mom.
I've snapped and cracked.
errrr.
I just feel gross,
you know?

I'm tired.
Physically and mentally.

I've danced for what feels like fifty days in a row.
I've bottled bottled bottled emotion.
I'm bracing myself to say goodbye to dear friends and
I just.
don't.
want.
to.
I feel poor and I need to buy: makeup, a planner, sunglasses, and a phone case.
I thought I would be done with school today and I'm not.


It rained all day today,
which felt like a constant reminder of my inside state.
When I was driving home tonight after ballet,
it was still wet.
But it was also lighter than usual for 9pm.
To the left, it was dark and stormy and grey.
The right, however, was pink and yellow and blue.

I would glance through the empty streets of our little town, and see pink sky.
warm, saturated, sky.

You know, we serve a God of reckless grace.
Big, bright, beautiful grace that showers us when we humble ourselves before our God.

today, I'm thankful for grace.
I'm thankful for doughnuts and coffee.
I'm thankful for tears, however embarrassing or inconvenient they may be.
today, I'm choosing to chase the God who paints the sky pink.


Tuesday, June 6, 2017

be _______

be brave.
stop hiding in fear of screwing up.
stop protecting every inch of your design.
you can do it.

be bold.
start speaking life into others.
if the word is cold,
warm it with your flame.

be strong.
don't let fear get the best of you.
you contain more power and influence
than you will ever know.

be kind.
choose your words with grace.
little eyes are watching-
be the person you wished you had in your life.




Tuesday, May 30, 2017

broken people sit in church pews


every Sunday, church buildings fill up with imperfect people.
we stand in the sanctuary, singing songs led by flawed worship leaders.
we nit-pick words spoken by struggling pastors.


on Sundays, we slap concealer on our blemishes.
we straighten our posture and sweeten our words.
we nod and smile while tuning out.


how sad it is,
that we feel the need to pretend our brokenness doesn't exist.

because in reality,
when the broken pieces stand together
the glory of the fixer is all the more beautiful.



Wednesday, May 10, 2017

his supercalifragilisticexpialidocious vision

what do you think the vision is for your life?

sure, make it through high school.
collage, jobs, kids, marriages.

but beyond that...
what do you think God's vision for your life is?


I know what my vision for my life is.
I graduate high school with perfect grades, before heading off to a conservatory to study dance performance.
I'll live in a perfectly, Pinterest-y dorm room and have lots of friends.
While I'm there, some visiting important-person will say I'm amazingly talented and ask me to come dance on Broadway.
I'll move and dance in lots of Broadway shows, while getting married to my incredibly hot husband.
We'll have a few Jesus-loving kids and live happily ever after.

but God's vision?
err, not really sure on that one.

right now I'm struggling with some hard people that love malice and gossip.
they deliberately hurt in order to deal with their own hurt.
they seek conflict instead of peace and humility, simply because it's easier.
and.
it's.
so.
painfully hard.

because where is God in this?
where is justice?
what's the next right thing?

the prophet Habakkuk asked God the same thing.
in chapter one, Habakkuk is complaining to God about the evilness of the world. 
he asks, "How long, Lord, must I call for help, but you do not listen?" [Habakkuk 1:2]

and God answers him saying, 

"Look at the nations and watch-
    and be utterly amazed.
For I am going to do something in your days
    that you would not believe
    even if you were told."

Habakkuk responds with a second complaint;

"Your eyes are too pure to look on evil;
    you cannot tolerate wrongdoing.
Why then do you tolerate the treacherous?
    Why are you silent while the wicked
    swallow up those more righteous than themselves?"


and agian, God answers saying;

“Write down the vision I am giving you.
    Write it clearly on the tablets you use.
Then a messenger can read it
    and run to announce it.
The vision I give you
    waits for the time I have appointed.
It speaks about what is going to happen.
    And all of it will come true.
It might take a while.
    But wait for it.
You can be sure it will come.
    It will happen when I want it to. 

whhhhaaaaaaaaaatttttttttt?!?!?!?

friends, His vision for your life is more amazing than you could ever imagine!
it's bigger than high school and Broadway and hot husbands.
it's SO SO SO SO AMAZING!

and all he asks of us is to wait.
to listen.
to write and read about his goodness.

today, I challenge you to stop.
to look through your journals,
read your old blog posts
think through your life.
see God's faithfulness.
see the beginning of his vision.

and know.
know that it's just that;
the beginning of an utterly amazing vision.

Monday, May 1, 2017

we don't get pauses

On the rare occasion that my mom and I fight (wink wink), 
there is often one, if not more, pauses.
We're big pausers.

It usually goes like:
blahhhhh blahhhh
blahhhhh 
*volume increases* 
blahhhhhh
yell shout yeellllllll
I'M GETTING TOO MAD I NEED TO TAKE A BREAK
OKAY!
OKAY, FINE!

And then I (because it's usually me who needs to pause) storm off and
a) cry
or
b) think of evil comebacks.

And while I sit there trying to think about why this is such a big deal (clue: 98.99% of the time it's not), my mom comes in peace and we try to figure out where our communication went wrong.
In a calm(ish) manner.
Sometimes we take more pauses, sometimes we don't.


You know what I realized about this?
It's really hard to hit the pause button in real life.



Almost every day someone asks me for a detailed power-point of the next ten years of my life. Usually I respond with one of my three canned answers.
And every time, I'm subtly reminded that I don't know what-the-heck I'm going to do.
Which is fine.
It's fine.  

But I just want to pause this whole stupid growing-up thing!
I don't want to take the SAT on Saturday.
I don't want to make a list of collages to visit.
I don't want to be responsible and grow up schedule my own appointments.
I don't want to face conflict on my own!


But as much as I'd like it, there are no pauses in life.
We can stop, think and take a walk, but the clock keeps ticking.
The music keeps playing.
And there are no pauses.

"You mean to say that you wrote this just to tell me that the world keeps spinning and just to keep freaking out?!?!?!?"

Err, kinda.

But I also want to remind you (and me) that we don't know the plot.
We don't design the timeline.
He does.
And He knows when we need time-outs better than we do.

So before you keep yelling, take a breath.
And remember:
His strength.
His pauses.
Because he's got it.
He's got you.

Thursday, April 27, 2017

one day [thoughts on the now & then]



one day a light will click,
and all this waiting will make sense.
all your prayers and cries that you spoke
will finally have resolution.
you'll come to see that the pleas tangled in worries
were actually wrapped tightly in Gods grace.

one day you will wake up
and the fog will be lifted.
you'll look back and see that the valley was much bigger
and the hills much taller.

one day you'll remember the time when you thought everything was over.
even though you were certain,
you were actually, well...okay.
and although it was awful and confusing and the waitttinngggg,
this place you are
just happens to be right where you are suppose to be.

Sunday, April 23, 2017

empty drafts



this draft is empty,
and because can't think of words.

but then i think
how authentic
an empty page is


Friday, April 14, 2017

take heart, dear ones

See, darkness covers the earth
and thick darkness is over the peoples,
but the Lord rises upon you
    and his glory appears over you. 

take heart dear ones,
for the Son of God has come.

worry not dear ones,
for he was betrayed in your place.

feel much dear ones,
for the lamb drank the sin of the world.

read much dear ones,
about the moment darkness was defeated.


so take heart dear ones,
because Friday is not the end:
Sunday is coming.




Thursday, March 16, 2017

hey there tired soul

hey there tired soul.
these days are long, jam packed with routine and deadlines.
coffee is frequent, sleep is not.
and we pull ourselves together.
and it goes
on
and on
and on.

so, you tired soul,
take a breath.
come on, just do it.
in through your nostrils.
now out through your mouth.

one more time.

feel that?

your hearts still beating,
waiting to hear the next chapter.
your lungs still fill,
giving you what you need to take the next breath.
and God is still good,
holding you tight,
you tired, weary soul. 

Thursday, March 9, 2017

rain

the rain drips down
drowning out sound
filling the holes
hiding the moles
making me feel old.
old and cold and soggy and groggy.

drip
drip
plop.

plop
drip
drop.

drop
plop
drip.

round
and down
and all with out sound
my mind pounds
and thounds
waiting to drown
the confusion that keeps going round and round

Thursday, February 9, 2017

being raw in a pulled-together world




In all reality, the past few weeks have contained long, hard days.
Teary, emotional, gut wrenching, make you want to hide-in-a-hole-for-no-apparent-reason kinda days.
I sat in my car and screamed between sobs.
I vocalized questions that I will never know the answers to.



And then suddenly the earth is covered in a sparkling white blanket.
Everything was canceled.
People were stuck.
And all I could do was stare out of the snow globe,
sip coco and Facebook stalk.

Sit in the quiet.
Breathe a little.
Put on my smartwool.
And remember that it's necessary to stop and breathe.

Because at some point,
I've got to postpone putting my big-girl pants on.
Stop pulling it together.
Open the bottled emotion. 



I had a meltdown over the phone a few days ago.
And as I hung up, I told myself that the meltdown was over.
get it together Elissa
everything's fine and I'm just being hormonal.

But I think I was wrong.
I'm learning that I have to stop constantly pulling-it-together,
and allow myself to be a little raw.

Friends, this is me being raw.
I usually like to write posts a safe distance away from the uncomfortable, so I can wrap it in a pretty bow for you.
I try to give resolution and show God's hand.

But life doesn't always have immediate resolution.
And I think it's so so so important to remember that God's hand is in both the pretty and the dirty, whether we see it or not.

So I'm gonna try be a little raw for a while.
I'm going to talk about it.
I'm going to remember that
God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; 
God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 
God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, (1 corth. 1:27-28)
I challenge you to do the same.




Saturday, January 7, 2017

the unspoken anniversaries


Sometimes days come that we don't want to acknowledge.
They may sneak up on us;
or maybe they shout out their coming arrival.
Whatever the case may be, the calender still turns.
The memories of days past still come.
And these memories we face become anniversaries.

Anniversaries of things that can't be mentioned in chit-chat.
Memories that are held close,
stored deeply in our very being.

We're not to talk with strangers about these things.
Sometimes, we can't talk with anyone about these anniversaries,
these feelings.

But the days arrive and the thoughts unpack.
The sun rises in order that we might live through this.
We convince ourselves that we are meant to walk through these anniversaries alone,
although nothing could be further from the truth.

So when the day arrives, stand tall.
Look it in the eye.
Gather your troops- friends, chocolate, movies, family, journals, phone calls- whoever they are.
Let them walk the day with you.
For you, dear one,
are not meant to face these days alone.

Monday, October 24, 2016

I want a band-aid


My mind is a mess
turning
turning
turning

Swiched on at 3:00am,
yet of at 11:00am.

I want someone to put a band-aid on me.
Fix this mess.
Tape it back together.

But the second someone talks about how
God has a reason for everything
or
Just be thankful for the things you do have
or
Something good is going to happen

I freeze.

Not because I don't know these words to be true,
or because they aren't said sincerely enough.

I know those things are true.

I'm just not ready for them.
I'm not ready for the world to move on,
and act like nothing happened.

I'm trying to function like a normal human being,
but I'm struggling.

I'm struggling because I want tape and glue.
I want someone to say something that fixes me.
I want God to make my world perfect and happy and unicorns and rainbows.
I want the band-aid.

But you know what?
I don't get the tape and glue.
I don't get an easy out.

We get feelings that demand to be felt.
We get people that love us, and are willing to listen.
We get support groups.
We get the dirty and the messy.
The ugly and the broken.

I'm humbled in my need for Jesus.
Because oh, how I need him.
I need him to hold me and protect my fragile heart.
I need him to give me words.
I need his grace and forgiveness.
I need him to be a rock that is higher than I.


Because someday, he will make all things new.

We aren't going to be broken fragments, glued back together.
There will be no more pain and sadness.

For the God of all heaven and earth will wipe away every tear from every eye.
And all things will be made new.

So today, I get the broken.
But I know that someday I will get the beautiful.

Friday, September 9, 2016

BIG EXCITING NEWS



Heyo!!!

I am so excited to let you know that I'm now a contributor to a new blog called BURNING YOUTH!!

Sisters Kate and Abbie who blog at the goodness revolt and Abbiee are some of my favorite bloggers. Their blogs are GOALS. Like, go check them out and leave them comments and chocolate.
You won't be sorry.

So when Kate contacted me about collaborating on a project/website/blog/something totally awesome  I was slightly starstruck and super excited.
So excited.

What is BURNING YOUTH about?

Exactly what it sounds like it’s about: youth on fire. Living inspired lives, and inspiring others. It’s about our lives as warheads, overcoming, fighting the demons, making the world a better place, art, travel music—things that make our hearts hum. That’s what BURNING YOUTH is an outlet for. Most importantly, helping other young adults realize that they aren’t fighting their battles alone… that we’re in this together. We are all taking down the shadows and searching for identity. We can do that together. We can take hands in the darkness and fight this stuff in unison, not solitude.

^^I may have stolen the about words from Kate...

here is the link: http://www.burningyouth.com/

IF THAT DOESN'T"T MAKE YOU WANNA GO CHECK OUT THE BLOG, I DON'T KNOW WHAT WILL.

There ya go. My big exciting news. ;-)

Thursday, August 25, 2016

i serve one master


When I wake-up tomorrow morning, I will remember I serve one master.

I do not serve my image
make-up 
clothes
trends
brands

I do not serve the expectations of others
teachers
parents
friends 
siblings
peers

I do not serve my feelings
fear 
loneliness
stress
doubt


For I choose to serve one God.

I will strive to align myself with the person and character of Jesus. 
I will fight to know my true image found in grace
I will work diligently in what I have been called to
I will cling to truth and fight darkness.

Because I serve one master. 

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

on feelings


on grief 
Let yourself cry today.
Allow yourself to be sad and worried. 
But remember what is true: He is still good. 

on joy
Let yourself enjoy these moments.
Feel the music and 
let your soul breathe deep into the cracks. 
Remember what is true: He is still good.

on anger
Be angry. 
Be mad. 
Yell and scream and cry until you have no water left.
Rip up paper.
Remember truth: He is still good. 

on confusion
It's okay to not know. 
To question.
To wait and wonder and not understand.
Yet in your confusion, know: He is still good. 

on worry
Go ahead and freak out.
Bite your nails. 
Do a nervous room-cleaning, or cook something. 
Hope for the best.
Know truth: that no matter what, He is still good


  on truth
Know what is true.
What is pure, helpful, and uplifting.
Know that you are loved and precious,
and your future is brighter then you could ever imagine



{Thanks for visiting Letters to Jayna- I'm so glad you stoped by! Please take a moment to leave a comment and let me know you dropped by. And if you like what you see, find me on social media to join the conversation.}

Thursday, April 28, 2016

Retreat in the Midst of Chaos




I sit listening to the gentle waves. 

Sunlight beating into my heart. 
I think about the light of Jesus I prayed about this morning.

Inhale. 
Exhale.
Peace. 
Rest. 
Typical 'retreat sentiments'
             {excerpt from my journal, February 12, 2016} 

I skimmed over these words as I flipped to a blank page last night.
Remembering those quiet moments, while I was free to be still.
Asking.
Listening.
Thinking.

I think about the ocean I drive by everyday.
The tides going in and out, compatible with the moon.
How complex those simple moments are.


I have four weeks left of school. A research paper to write. Math to complete. Two science exams, along with my history papers.
My sister is graduating.
She has to decide where she will spend the next four years of her life tonight.

I am Dorthy in our dance school's production of The Wizard of Oz. 
We are going host family and throw a graduation party.
I am going to drink coffee and write papers late into the night.
Enough sweat to fill a lake is about to seep from my pours.

Rest? Calm?

During finals?
While my one of best friend packs to leave?
When I wait in the wings, preparing to dance a full length ballet?

I asked God about peace last night.
I poured out my thoughts, my questions, my heartache.
And although my eyelids were drooping and my mattress encompassed my exhausted body, I read my words from that day.

My 'retreat alone time' journal entry.
My thoughts during that weekend.
And although it was a bubble, it wasn't the only time I experience this peace.

I experienced it this morning as I globed on mascara.
I experienced it as I drove to class.
I was at peace during my test.
My soul is at peace, because of Him.

Today, I pray you will find calm in the storm.
I hope you will find joy in the ordinary.
I pray you will anchor yourself on the peace of Jesus.

And may you know how loved and valuable you are in the chaos of this crazy life.




Thursday, March 10, 2016

When All Time Stands Still



It was a grey car ride. Melancholy filled my lungs as I sat in my pink pants and tunic shirt, staring out the window. It was mostly quiet, for no one really wanted to say anything. As we approached the Seattle, my mom began putting words together. Filling us in on what to expect. “...this is probably it…I think Abbie, Ralph and Cathy might be there...think about anything you want to say…” As we walked briskly up into that little house, my legs brushed the lavender bushes I had spend hours trimming with kitchen scissors. Making sachets. Dread hung in the should-be-cheerful, yellow living room. The kitchen chairs were pulled out in order that we could squeeze. I ate a lot of teriyaki food in those chairs. My Grandma came out from the bedroom wiping a tear. Her daughter, whom she had spent 43 years caring for, was dying. Years spent in doctors offices, conferences for parents with children with special needs, staying up at night. The official diagnosis was Rett Syndrome. My aunt was the longest survivor, the first in America to be diagnosed. Us Weisz women like attention. But not that day. The second I walked in a felt like I needed to leave. My body felt like it was being crushed by a encompassing weight. I sat stiffly, with my ever present ballerina posture, staring blankly at the petite brown recliner. I made her throw pillows to match that chair. I came home from the drugstore armed with nail polish and gave her the best pedicure. As everyone made small talk about who-knows-what, I simply sat. Clenching every muscle subconsciously. Us girls left to grab some lunch. The oxygen felt good. And we returned armed with smoothies. I still remember what I ordered at Jamba Juice. Shuffling into the should-be-cheerful, yellow living room, I sat again. And then, I went in. We went in. 
Into that tiny little bedroom, I stood. I didn’t know what to do or say, or even if I should say anything. I remember running my hands through her hair. Rachel taking a picture or two. My daddy standing against the wall, talking about his sister. I don’t know how long it was. I don’t remember if I said anything. I don’t remember if I kissed her forehead, or said, “I love you.” I don’t remember. Finding myself out in the living room, my brain in complete standstill and all emotion frigid. Then they asked if I wanted to go in again, one last time. Say goodbye. And in that moment, all of the heaviness and sorrow collapsing in around my heart, I lost the battle. I said no. I found myself sitting in the hard, wooden pews at Westside Presbyterian Church just over a week later. Thinking about what I had to say about my aunt and the impact she had on me. In the moment a choose not to tell her those things, whether I needed to say one last goodbye to the woman who told me so much without ever opening her mouth. That day I choose to keep quiet about the impact of a beautiful soul. 
And today, will I lose that opportunity again? 

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

the other side of the screen


I sit here curled up in a ball.
Yoga pants and a sweatshirt cover my leotard and tights. 
I stare at this blank page, this blank post.

how do i use my voice? 

One of my goals for 2016 was to be more real. To display the complete package .
Some will view it as a beautiful wrapped present, and others will view it as a crumpled package on the floor. 
It scares me slightly. 

But I also know I long to see the imperfections of others. 
I want to know I'm not alone in my weakness and failures. 
My soul craves the naked truth of the gospel. 

grace.

 I don't try to act like someone I'm not. 
but
I am an A student. 
I am a extrovert (for the most part) and have a inclusive personality. 
I am responsible. 
I volunteer.
I communicate well. 
I avoid conflict.

I also think negatively about people.
I am a gossip. 
I make judgments about people based of their appearance. 
I over commit myself. 

What draws me to people? 
Honesty. 
A sense of 'realness'.
Inclusiveness. 


To be vulnerable, I have to risk facing your judgments of me.
And at some point, that cripples me. 
I need people to like me. 
My blog is designed to show you something you want to read. 
I want you to like my pictures, my writing, heck, even my fonts. 

But are you gaining anything of value from my font? 
Are you going to walk away from your side of the computer screen feeling relationship? 
Feeling you can relate?  

is this stupid? 

I want real.
I want truth.
I want the funny embarrassing stories. 

That's why I tell you about when I peed my paints on a hike. 
That's why I tell you about my nutcracker withdraw sympotoms
It's why I love awkward and awesome.


So I sit, curled up in my safe and cozy chair. Contemplating hitting the publish button.
My cocoon of quietness pushes me to take advantage of this rare moment. 

but will I?