I’ve never been one to make new year’s resolutions. Instead, ending a year makes me reflect on the year before: the good, the hard, the highs, the lows. Every year, I look to the next year with a sort of anxious wondering. This year may beat them all as I embark on what seems to be the impossible. Kind of like the impossible of starting to write a blog at the beginning of January and finally finishing at the end. It’s still January so I’m sticking with a New Year’s theme. Work with me.
Another part of a new year? Interesting articles and bonus: new music! Yes, it’s that time again when I have so many interesting tabs on my internet browsers that I need to share them with you. I’ve also recently discovered some new music that I’m in love with. What better way to start the year than with thought provoking articles, funny articles, a video that’ll make you cry and good music to listen to?
Out on a Limb – Seth Godin
This might not work.
At some level, “this might not work” is at the heart of all important projects, of everything new and worth doing. And it can paralyze us into inaction, into watering down our art and into failing to ship.
Beyond Culture Shock: Culture Pain, Culture Stripping – Rachel Pieh Jones
I recently discovered A Life Overseas, a site for missionaries to discuss real struggles. This is an incredible resource for those living overseas. This particular article resonated deeply with me.
Culture stripping is the slow peeling back of layers and layers of self. You give up pork. You give up wearing blue jeans. You give up holidays with relatives. And those are the easy things. Your ideas about politics and faith and family, your sense of humor and taste in clothes, the books you read, evolve and change. Even, potentially, your outlook on spirituality.
You have little instinctive protective layers between you and the world. Buffers like fluency, shared history, family, no longer buoy you. You are learning, but you will never be local. And so you also are stripped of the idealized image of yourself as a local.
Inauguration and the Need for a King – Donald Miller
As I get older, my belief in Jesus is helping me realize what happens on earth is eternally important but it is not eternity. My fight to bring light into this darkness seems more important but my hope lies elsewhere.
Perhaps before we get too excited or too deflated about this week’s inauguration we can remember the One that is to come. This is not a terrible event, nor is it our hope. It is just people creating earthly governments in a life after and still before God. And I am grateful for those who serve in these capacities, flaws and all, on both sides of the ridiculous isle. I do wish more of them would bow before the King who made them.
Radi-Aid: Africa For Norway
A tongue-in-cheek way to change the way people look at Africa:
Africans unite to save Norwegians from dying of frostbite. You too can donate your radiator and spread some warmth!
Best Satire Reviews on Amazon – Kristen Howerton
One of my favorite bloggers condensed some of the best satirical Amazon reviewers in one place. Laugh away.
Sports Illustrated 2012 SportsKids of the Year: Conner and Cayden Long
Tears. All I had were tears.
Chelsea Moon: If Alison Krauss ever made a hymns album, it would sound like Chelsea Moon. Chelsea has two albums, one with The Franz Brothers and another with Uncle Daddy. I first heard her at a friend’s house where, upon hearing it, immediately asked who she was and bought her album the same day. There are classic hymns and some more obscure ones, all done in a unique and folksy way that makes me put her albums on repeat, singing along the whole time.
Act of Congress is quickly replacing John Mayer as my “music to listen to while I cook” and replacing everything else as my “music to listen to while I’m doing anything”. There are times when I think that they sound exactly like Nickel Creek and other times when I put them in more of a rock category but then just decided to put them in the “music that’s so good that I don’t have a category for it”. You can get some of their stuff for free on Noisetrade.