i like to laugh at my own jokes. i don't know why people get so annoyed when i and people like me do this. it's not that i expect you to think i'm funny; but yes, i do think i'm funny. or else i wouldn't say my little tidbit. and i really like laughing; i think it's my favorite thing in the world. so i'm going to laugh at my own jokes. maybe that's selfish, but that's okay with me. my jokes aren't always for you to laugh at. i won't be hurt if you don't. besides, sometimes if i don't laugh at them, noone will. someone has to stand up for me. might as well be me. i was thinking before that i've gotten funnier as i've gotten older, but i think what's really true is that i've let my mouth say the things i think are funny more and people get more polite and laugh at me more than when they get older.

so here's some stuff i like:
"Sing about a fruitful vineyard; I, the Lord, watch over it; I water it continually, I guard it day and night so that no one may harm it. I am not angry. If only there were briers and thorns confronting me! I would march against them in battle; I would set them all on fire. Or else let them come to me for refuge; let them make peace with me, yes, let them make peace with me.
In days to come Jacob will take root, Israel will bud and blossom and fill all the world with fruit."
Isaiah 27:2-6
i love the image of verse 6- a vine that is now barren and could just as easily be burnt up, but instead, which God sees a future for, that it will take root and bud and blossom and that this dead and withered plant will fill the world with fruit... and its analogy to the people of Israel, to His people today... though they are now far from Him, withering and dying, He knows they will take root in Him and He will still be there loving them and ready to care for them when they turn back and He will make them frustful so that they will be prosperous and through them, His promise and His love will fill the world- He sees the good even though they're dried up... and also in me, even in my dried up, inconsistent, unfaithful, selfish heart, even though in myself i'm stagnant and fruitless, He sees that He can use me and make me beautiful- He can make me bud and blossom and He can use me to be a part of bringing fruit to the world, though i can't even take care of myself. that gives me joy.

and on a related note:
"I stared at the little white agates in my hand, delicate as moon drops. The mystery of God's love as I understand it is that God loves the man who was being mean to his dog just as much as he loves babies; God loves Susan Smith, who drowned her two sons, as much as he loves Desmond Tutu. And he loved her just as much while she was releasing the handbrake of her car that sent her boys into the river as he did when she first nursed them. So of course he loves old ordinary me, even or especially at my mostscared and petty and mean and obsessive. Loves me; chooses me."
Anne Lamott, Traveling Mercies
yes! this is what i believe most deeply that God is about! that He loves even the murderer, even the adulterer, even the liar, even the imperfect... and this is my prayer: that i might learn to love like that. or at least that He'll love through me like that, because i really can't do it. i think this is my favorite story in this book. i love this book, i love how real and honest she is. i feel so connected to her, like i understand, like i'm so much like her. except i haven't learned yet how to be so okay with myself and i am often much more religious and legalistic instead of caring and listening and real and i don't remember to not take myself seriously as much as she.

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