set fire to the rain, awakening, and sunroofs

I was just thinking to myself as I cruised around in my dad’s little blue car and a sunroof about how cool I felt, driving in this sleek coup.  Then I tried to close the sunroof and got my hair stuck in it.

God likes to keep me humble.

Today, I spent my time waiting in line, eating Italian food, smiling for the camera, eating salsa, and losing at hearts.  I also remembered how much I love that Trader Joe’s has tons of dark chocolate covered things there.  I see a shopping trip in my future.

Today, my pastor was talking about having a heart transformation and how that is the only way to keep our tongues in check.  He mentioned the word “awakening” – which, of course, initially brought to mind the Switchfoot song – which I realized paints a very clear and accurate picture of spiritual growth.

At least if you wake up like I do.

My morning begins with my alarm going off, as many other people’s mornings also begin.  Since I’ve learned that a beeping noise or any common alarm tone just gets the crabbiness going sooner, I use my phone alarm and rotate using ringtones of my favorite songs.  Alarm number 1 goes off, and if my fuzzy brain can remember which button is snooze, I press it and get another five minutes.  Alarm number 2 goes off after five, and my hand – having rehearsed the motion once already – presses “snooze” once again. Depending on how tired I am and if the thing I’m getting up for is exciting or not, this might happen again.

But there comes a time for all of us – even the most adamantly not-morning people – when we have to actually get out of bed.  I’m fortunate enough to have direct access to my bathroom from my room, so that’s my first stop – to take out my retainers and contacts. (yes, I wear contacts only at night.  it’s an amazing phenomenon called Corneal Refractive Therapy or CRT.  Google it.)  My sleepy brain provides me with a one-track mind, guided by routine. take pill.  get coffee.  get cereal/muffin/breakfasty item.  go back to room.  find a place for the coffee to sit.  sit back on/in (depending on how cold my room is) bed.  get Bible.  commence read/eat sequence. Think about what I’ve read.  Talk to Jesus for a bit.  Ask self if I can be pleasant to people yet.  And if the answer to that last question is “yes” or at least “possibly”, then I come out of my cave and greet the world…  or at least my mom, who is usually sitting in her favorite spot on the couch with her book or her iPod.

There was a point to that long-winded account of my typical morning, I promise.  Did you notice how long it took for me to become even slightly awake and how many things were required to help me reach that point?  Do you see how that’s like spiritual growth?

Maybe I’m the only one who grows slowly.  It’s not a halting process necessarily, but it’s slow!  Maybe other people hear something, read something, get a revelation about something and their life is changed from that moment on.  It’s probably my over thinking mind that is to blame, examining all the facets of the growth so I know exactly what’s going on.

I might be biased, but I think that slow growth is just fine.  Maybe even great.  The awareness of the fact that things are changing is key for me, knowing that my heart is being formed into something that glorifies God gets my brain on board with the plan.  It’s like remodeling a house, sort of.  Most people can’t change everything all at once because – let’s face it – we’re not made of money.  So we focus our attention into one room of the house at once, making it new and clean and presentable to the world.

Remodeling. Growing.  Awakening.

My heart, His remodeled home.

On a completely different note, I have finally acquired 21, by Adele, and it makes me want to sing with as much vigor and power as I possess… which isn’t that much, to be honest. She’s one of the few female singers who has a range that’s low like mine.  But then, when I get going at the top of my lungs, I realize that I sound nothing like her, so I just get wistful and admire her vocal prowess.



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