Friday, April 17, 2015

Three poems by Chef

Running Slow

I'll stop to smell the flowers sweet,
You'll run to not be late.
And I'll arrive at half-past-nine…
You arrived at eight.

An you will get the raise in pay,
And I will not;
But you will never slow,
And I will know the joys of life,
The beauty of the snow.

The softness of the moss
Or the swell smell of the rose.
And because you get the money,
I'll know things you'll never know.

Friday, April 10, 2015

Holy Friday, Orthodox Easter (Pascha) and Blessings

Perhaps you have seen this blog post by Rita Wilson (actress in her own right, Greek Orthodox and Tom Hanks' wife). It compares some of the differences between Eastern Orthodox Pascha and Easter as celebrated by western churches. I'll leave it to her to explain some of the differences and let you read her blog post there. 

For me, the weekend really begins the week before: Holy Week. It is about more than just Pascha and Christ rising from the Dead. Sort of. It is about the whole process moving from Christ in the Garden to being on the Cross. And we commemorate those events in various ways throughout the process of Lent. 

Last night was Holy Thursday. We read the story of Christ going to the garden to pray, His arrest, and all the way through to the tomb being empty, from each of the four Gospel accounts told of the story - so 12 gospel readings in all; many churches read them in a very dark room, while you kneel. 

Holy Friday, the service starts out by commemorating Christ in the tomb. We sing the Noble Joseph, at the beginning and it really is just a beautiful and moving song. 


This is not our church, nor even my favorite rendering of the song, but does give a pretty good view of what the service looks like for many churches. 

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Book Review: Rejection Proof

As kids, we face rejection on a daily basis - every time we ask our parents for something that we know is going to be turned down, we are taking a risk. By the time we move into adulthood, we have repeated that course of action millions of times, moving away from our "safe place" of rejection (our families) and out into the wider world of friends, teachers, and strangers. As adults, many of us have experienced that "no" so many times that instead of being inoculated to hearing a negative answer to our requests, we are paralyzed to even ask any more.

A man named Jia Jang took this paralyzing fear by the horns when he found himself living a successful life, by society's standards, but miserable because he was not living up to his personal dreams and expectations. He started on a quest to get rejected 100 times in 100 days. The idea involved making requests in varying levels of outlandishness, and getting rejected. His requests ranged from asking a stranger for $100, to asking to slide down a pole at a fire station, to getting a free room at a hotel, being the worst salesman ever, and so on. Through the course of this project, he refined his technique and received better and better results at getting to "yes".

Opening up to the ultimate rejection: 


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