Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Living in this world

I've been struggling with the desire to completely escape this world and ONLY be with Jesus. But I know on another level that I'm in this world for a reason. And I want to be here! The following quote really reminded me of HOW I can live in this world, but still be connected with the Lover of my heart.

"There is a way of ordering our mental life on more than one level at once. On one level we may be thinking, discussing, seeing, calculating, meeting all the demands of external affairs. But deep within, behind the scenes, at a profounder level, we may also be in prayer and adoration, song and worship, and a gentle receptiveness to divine breathings." - Thomas Kelly

I've been contemplating JUST how much I really want Jesus to be part of my life all the time. And was becoming a little frustrated with only having times with him in some portion of my life. BUT, this quote renewed the sense of hope I have that I can ALWAYS be in communion with Him. I will purpose in my heart to from this day forward always order my mental life to be interacting within this world but also to be aware of the Holy Spirit, His groanings and prayers, His grace and glory, His purpose and desires...

He has created me to be with Him. So I will be.

- Jessica

Living in this world

"There is a way of ordering our mental life on more than one level at once. On one level we may be thinking, discussing, seeing, calculating, meeting all the demands of external affairs. But deep within, behind the scenes, at a profounder level, we may also be in prayer and adoration, song and worship, and a gentle receptiveness to divine breathings." - Thomas Kelly

Friday, October 23, 2009


I recently wrote a "Tip of the Day" on my whiteboard outside my room in Muir Hall that turned out to mean more than I originally purposed. As the RA of third floor, I have the opportunity to challenge the girls everyday with something. I wrote, "You don't need to be perfet."

As I completed the phrase, a resident walked by and said, "Oh, I get it!" I was confused and then she pointed out that I had misspelled the word "Perfect."

I laughed at the irony.

I've been recently listening to an artist by the name of Bon Iver. He is a musician and his story is very interesting - it involves things like a band breakup, a relationship breakup,and a cabin in the woods. I encourage you to visit his myspace page to hear his music and his story.

His life story is pretty interesting, however, the thing that struck me most about this artist is that some of his most powerful work is EXTREMELY raw. The quality of his recording and even the quality of his voice is just - imperfect. But it's wonderful.

Another artist with a similar imperfection-vibe is Damien Rice. Please look at "The Blower's Daughter."

By these references, I certainly do not mean to belittle these musicians. On the contrary, I honor them for illustrating the power of heartfelt music.

I've always believed that true beauty in music does not come through a perfect melody or incredibly well-crafted lyrics, but through a heart that is passionate for the sound - a sound where the message is more important than the words that carry it, the passion more important than the pitch that moves it, and the listener more important than the musician.

Music in the raw.

So I've been inspired to produce excellent music, but not to worry too much about its perfection. Sometimes the most beautiful things in life are imperfet.

Saturday, September 05, 2009

I'm an RA-in-training!

RA stands for Residential Advisor. When I moved all my stuff into my single room on the third floor of Muir Hall, I kind of forgot that one day soon, all these rooms to my right and left will be FILLED with girls!!

I can't believe we only have a week before residents move in!!

My staff here at Muir Hall is pretty awesome. I'll give you a little run-down:

Patrick - Crazy curly haired man. He is tall and awkwardly really funny. He likes to mountain-bike and scare girls.

Jeff - Returning RA in Muir Hall. Very nerdy (he will admit to as much) in classical ways - Star Wars, Zelda, HPV (which does not stand for what you think it does... it's Human-Powered Vehicle)

Gaylen - A little more shy than the rest of us, but just as funny. He also enjoys the nerdy things in life and is also a musician like me!

Kristi - Lovely, solid Christian girl. I am so lucky to have her as a fellow RA and friend. She and I never met before this, but it feels like we have been friends forever and will be friends for a long time.

All five of us get along super well together and it is SO much fun exploring the Math and Science geekiness that is inevitable in a Math and Science Hall.

Our theme for opening is going to be Space. And I'm stoked about it. We're going to have Mars and Venus Bathroom signs, Planetary names for each wing.... and PATRICK came up with these awesome sketches for space dinos. They're pretty epic.

So, that will be happening too.

=) I'm loving it.

- Jessica

Friday, August 28, 2009

Shout-Out to my Sibs

Tonight is my last night in familiar land for a while. FamiliaL, familiaR, tomato, tomato. The sibs and mom and I are taking the trip to San Luis Obispo tomorrow morn to invade the city!

Just kidding, they’re taking me back to school. In the Suburban. Which gets nervous going over 65. Good thing we in the car like each other. 10 HOURS. mm.

But I have absolutely treasured this trip home. I am so lucky to have the brothers and sister that I do!!

Jourdan, Zachary, Noah:

I have loved every moment.

FOR example:

Blasting NKOTB in Camo
Lil’ Marky’s third nipple
Candy at BAS-Has
*I’m immersed in an underground Alabama Lab-R-inth*
The Sketch Record Store (oof)
Cabelas Fudge.
Still Frauesssh

Now, that’s just to name a few... =)

I JUST love you guys and am SO glad you’re in my life and I’m in yours. It’s an honor.

And thank you Daddy for these wonderful people. Ur tight.

- Jess

Monday, August 17, 2009

Dreams of a Melody

I've been doing hours upon hours of research on musical recording equipment! This is my wish-list that I've come up with:

Blue Bluebird Microphone package (mic, pop filter, shock mount, cable)

TC Electronics Konnekt 8 Interface (Connects microphone/keyboard to computer)

Logic Express 8 by Apple (Recording Software: a step up from Garageband on the Mac)

One step at a time, I hope to build my recording "studio" =) Right now, I'm just singing into my computer, recording into Garageband -which is SO much fun - but I'd like to invest in some components that will help create a better sounding, better quality song! A piece of art.

It's gonna be fun. =)

Shout out to all the musicians out there! Tell me what your favorite pieces of recording equipment are! I'd love to hear.

Peace, joy, and happiness
- Jessica

Monday, July 27, 2009

A Fresh Word From God.

I was recently forwarded an excerpt from a book by A.W. Tozer. Some things stuck out to me.

One, that current Christianity is kind of in the same boat as Judaism was when Christ came. It is comfortable and preachers know how to talk about it. But what we really need is a fresh word from God. We need leaders with eyes to see what the Spirit is doing NOW.

"Another kind of religious leader must arise among us. He must be of the old prophet type, a man who has seen visions of God and has heard a voice from the Throne. When he comes (and I pray God there will be not one but many) he will stand in flat contradiction to everything our smirking, smooth civilization holds dear. He will contradict, denounce and protest in the name of God and will earn the hatred and opposition of a large segment of Christendom. Such a man is likely to be lean, rugged, blunt-spoken and a little bit angry with the world. He will love Christ and the souls of men to the point of willingness to die for the glory of the one and the salvation of the other. But he will fear nothing that breathes with mortal breath."

Two, that now, in order to cooperate with what Heaven is doing and what God desires so wholly to do with us, we need to have voices for him.

"What is needed desperately today is prophetic insight. Scholars can interpret the past; it takes prophets to interpret the present. Learning will enable a man to pass judgment on our yesterdays, but it requires a gift of clear seeing to pass sentence on our own day. One hundred years from now historians will know what was taking place religiously in this year of our Lord; but that will be too late for us. We should know right now."

Read the full article here.

What do you think?

- Jessica

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Music, Sound, Technology

I am absolutely beside myself with hope for the future. LOL.

I am realizing that I am creatively bent to the extreme. I'm getting excited about really finding what it is I want to do with my life.

I'm beginning to embrace who I am. For the longest time, I assumed that I was very linear in nature. But when it really comes down to it, I am a musician and artist and math/science is just a means to an end. Yes, math is beautiful, but what I'm really passionate about is music and people. =)

I LOVE learning about math, physics, sound and technology and how it's all inter-connected with music. It just makes me absolutely GIDDY! I found the MUSIC section in my school library that has many fascinating titles, but one caught my eye particularly - "Music, Sound, Technology" by John M. Eargle.

I do still want to teach math because I want to give people a good foundation to build upon when they pursue the things God has created them for. Math is critically important in helping to understand the world around us and is needed for almost everything someone pursues.

So I'm studying on my own... what a concept! Learning about music, sound, technology... and alongside that, exploring worship and writing songs. Jesus, you are just AMAZING. I don't understand how people can do life without you. I know I couldn't. I love you.

Thank you Jesus for the creative EXPLOSION that's happening in the world. Lord I pray that you would guide those that follow you to magnify you in the most effective and crazy way possible.

Lord, I praise you for all you're doing, I love being part of this time.

Yours forever,
- Jessica

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Never Put God in a Small-Box

Wow. The last few days, I've been putting God in a "small box."

Now, what do I mean when I say "small box?"

I have not credited to Him the power to take me


to do with me


to bring me alongside


God is SO huge. And can do anything, bring me anywhere, align me with anyone. I will not stick to small dreams. I will not be a small person. And I will not put God in a small box!

To YOU be the glory God. Forever and ever, Amen.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

C is for Commitment

For a long time, I think I've been operating selfishly when it comes to commitment and service.

When someone invites me to do something or serve in some way, I tell them that I will think about it, pray about it, and get back to them. Then the follow-through is my weak point.

I DO think/pray about it. Often! Yet, I have trouble committing myself to say yes or no.

This applies also to projects. I often begin a really sweet project and have every intention of finishing it, but then I don't. I move on to the next thing.

I don't think God wants me to walk like that!


I'm trying to figure out why I operate like this... maybe those of you who know me will have an idea... I think it's funny that when you find something like this in yourself, often you can't see exactly why, but FOR SOME REASON, everyone else knows... :)

I think my lack of commitment is rooted in fear. Afraid to put myself in a position that I can't get out of... hmm. Or afraid that I end up doing the "wrong" thing. Or afraid that I'm not following God's will. Maybe I’m afraid of being confined to a box – unable to move about in freedom.

For example. If my friend invites me to do something on Thursday night, I don't want to for SURE say yes because, what if when it comes to that time, I don't feel like doing it? mm... it's all about moment-by-moment with me... i think that's unhealthy. It doesn't provide any consistency for my friends and other relationships. I need to be able to let my Yes be Yes and my No be No.

Otherwise, I'm just dragging people along for the ride. They are utterly and completely at my whim. If I show up, that's awesome, but they can't always DEPEND on that. Wow. It's hard to see that about myself.

I'm sure it is a lot deeper than just these thoughts. I will delve deep personally with God to ask him where the root is... He is the one who can truly transform me.

I do believe that God wants me to finish what I've started and not be afraid to walk through doors that He has obviously opened for me.


God is not a primarily logical God, but it helps our human minds to wrap around something, so logically, I've boiled it down to this when it comes to decisions:

1. Discern what is the Holy Spirit and what is my flesh then listen to the Spirit
2. Trust the Lord that what He tells me is true
3. Walk in obedience and godly commitment

With His grace - only by His grace - I will learn this lesson. =)

Lord, I submit myself to your process.

Walking with the Lord for a little while has told me that now, HERE comes the testing time... :D
- Jess <><

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

A Song of Joy

Slowly, Slowly,

I am becoming free.

I am listening to a song that I wrote yesterday. And I can't stop smiling. I am giddy!

I love inspired creative works. They are so... INSPIRED. =)

It makes me want to dance, pull someone in with me. This is a lovely life we live.

I'm beginning to have infectious joy. I am no longer affected by my outside world because my Father has injected me with his peace. His Insurmountable joy.


I hope this little snippet of a song pulls you in too.

Is she really
As wonderful as the stars?
In the beating of His heart?
Is it true?

Can she really
Open up her soul
In the middle of this golden dream?

Oh she cries,
Oh she cries,
Is it true?

Oh she cries,
Oh she cries,
Is it You?


I'm so happy. :)

I hope one day I'll be sharing this snippet to music. :)

- Love, Jessica

image credit: Grace - I remember you today, the beauty you radiate...

Monday, July 06, 2009

Ollallie Berries!!!


Turned into



Thursday, July 02, 2009

This should put you on the edge of your seat.

Wow. As my sister so lovingly reminded me in a comment, it's been FOREVER since I posted!


I'll do it tomorrow. =D

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

What's Next?

I am SO inspired to do something absolutely crazy and creative and epic. Beautiful for God.

He has placed within me such a passion. I'm discovering what it is I'm truly passionate about. My ethos. He is instilling His message within me and I am discovering the desire of His heart for mine.

I will continue to pursue the Maker. The Divine Creator.

Where will I go? What will I do? It's all up to Him. Show me what's next Father. I'll go.

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Connected - A Sister Story

Tomorrow is Father’s day. And I love my Daddy so hard!

However. I have the inkling to write an I-Love-my-sister post.


Daddy, I adore you and you are absolutely worthy of a day all to yourself. I miss you and will call you tomorrow. =)

Until then:

J****** E******** M*****

Forgive me, I just watched “National Treasure.” :)

I love you sister.

You inspire me to be a better big sister and a better woman. You are so strong and beautiful. I am so delighted to be part of your life and wish we could be closer geographically!! I can’t believe it’s already gotten to the point in our lives where we have to call each other because we live in different states! That wasn’t supposed to happen in my mind until we stopped playing Pocahontas in the backyard! (I want to be Nakoma – the pretty friend who catches Pocahontas in the cornfield. ;)

I miss you baby sister and you’ll never know how much you mean to me and how excited I am to see you grow into the most marvelous sPICamore tree.

Love you Jourdan,


WATCH THIS MOVIE! It made me want to cry and laugh SO hard at the same time!! I love you wild woman.





Monday, June 15, 2009


This picture pretty much speaks for itself.

But if it really NEEDED a caption, it would most definitely be:



What's your happy place?

- Jess <><

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Wordle - Surrender

As I head into summer, giddy as a pearl-ridden clam, I find myself with all these personal ambitions..

- sew a sundress
- write some music
- get involved
- feed a deer

the list goes on.

And then I feel a little tug on my heartstrings. I can get so comfortable making my own plans.. but really, all I need to do is:

Courtesy of Wordle

Friday, June 05, 2009

My Song

What is my song?

It is a little girl cry of delight as Daddy swoops her up in his strong arms

It is the sigh of a woman deeply in love

It is the desire of a daughter in desperate need of a Savior

It is the howl of a lone wolf longing for his purpose

It is a dip in the waters of grace

It is a sweet smile and timeless gaze

I set my eyes on you King. You are my warrior. I walk towards your light.

You are my one desire. The fire that burns in my soul. I am all Yours. Devoted to YOU FOREVER. YOU are my one and only.

Love, your love,

and Yours I remain.

Picture Credit: Hannah on Grace

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Kin, Mustache, and Smith - Part II

For a humorous look at the first two parts of Kin, Mustache and Smith, please refer to Part I of this post.

Sunday had more of a spiritual focus – go figure. =)

I went to church in the morning and got absolutely rocked during worship. Ha. Tried to leave early because I thought I had a lot of work to do at home.. good one. I couldn’t make myself leave! I went right back in, got on my knees and ended up crying and surrendering. Hilarious.

Got invited to lunch by a woman in the church who had seen me dancing and wanted to talk to me about worship and get to know me more.. SO awesome! We went to a bomb Mexican restaurant with her daughter and friend Joseph. It was so great. We connected on a lot of levels. It was so nice to be with people who are familiar with the same names and places that I am familiar with through my home church!!

Speaking of connection. In the car on the way to Vallarta’s (that blessed Mexican restaurant), Joseph was playing Kim Walker-Now-SMITH’s album “Here is My Song.” I was reminded how much her music has spoken to me in the past and bought it this morning. It’s rocked my world all today and reminded me how much I love Jesus and worshipping and connections.

Sunday night, I called my mommy and cried like a baby – a big, frustrated, tired baby. It was priceless. Mom talked to me, prayed for me, and we talked through some things that have been really bothering me.

I was holding some things against God, a little angry about the way things turned out, and impatient about My desires for my life. Since then, I have been slowly letting go of my insufficient way and grabbing hold of His life. I was greatly impacted by a blogger named B.J. Hamrick. Read her post “The Test” on her website/blog here. It pierced me and spoke to my struggle deeply.

Still in a funk on Monday, I did NOT want to go to Bible Study with the Sequoia girls. In fact, I DESPERATELY did not want to go. It’s no mistake that the Devil wanted to keep me down and did not want me to go fellowship with other Christians that cared about me! Unfortunately for the Devil, Bible Study is two doors down and so my feet led me to Kirsten and Julia’s room, but my heart was still very hard and unreceiving.

Funny how God knows exactly what you need.

In Bible Study, each woman was placed in the center of the group’s attention and had her life spoken into by the wonderful girls surrounding her. We gave encouraging words, recalled wonderful memories, and listed qualities that we admired in that person. It was INCREDIBLY life-giving not only to receive but also to give. Later that night, we made simple leather bracelets (see below) to remind us of the verse that exhorts us to set our minds on heavenly things.

The girls were pulled so much closer together and our collective love for Jesus majorly increased..

He is becoming enough.

And so, I grow.

I live, I laugh, I love. God has blessed me SO much and I am honored to be His daughter, pleased to be his hands and feet, and so much in love with his Son.

I pray you would find similar joy and peace in our Jesus.

- Jessica <><

Kin, Mustache, and Smith - Part I

The name of my suave new law firm? Or the summary of an incredible week with friends and Jesus?

Mmm, if you picked the latter, you are correct!

I have had a whirlwind of fun this week that I would just love to tell you about. I’ve split it up into two parts because it was so chock full of fabulous. Hunker down, grab some chocolate, and enjoy..

So my favorite girls in the entire world, namely Lynda and Jourdan Meyers - my best friends and woman family members - came to visit me last Wednesday night. We pretty much crammed as much fun as is possible in a two day period.

1. Crooning with Josh Gracin
2. Getting jiggy with it at line-dancing on Thursday night
3. Waiting in LONG starbucks lines
4. MM! A late-night showing of X-Men: WOLVERINE at the Fremont theatre!
5. Watching athletic college men kicking a soccer ball and each other while sipping peppermint hot chocolate

Epic. To put it lightly.

So, my wonderful other two-thirds left on Saturday morning. I was sad to see them go, but enjoyed a fabulous nap on Saturday afternoon and then a delightful second-to-last weekend in Sequoia Hall!

Friends Tyler and Lauren and I had the BRILLIANT idea to grill salmon fillets for dinner on Saturday. We set down our books, skipped to village market to buy said fillets and proceeded to make the most delectable meal my taste buds have beheld yet in the backyard of Sequoia. Tyler, grill-master that he is, lemon-garlic-ed those fish to tender perfection. We boiled water over the grill (about a twenty-minute endeavor) and made some pasta which we drenched in butter, lemon, more garlic, and some of the "fish juice." I grabbed a little "color" while we were at village market - baby tomatoes to add garnish to the bland colored plate. Forget the tan COLOR, this meal was anything but bland. It was so delicious. Maybe it tasted so good because we had been drooling over it for over an hour... maybe that played a part, but really, wow.

And we haven't even touched on dessert yet. Lauren and I surprised Tyler with a beautiful "bridal shower" concoction that Lauren pulled out of a maid of honor memory. It's so hard to prepare. Ready?

Quarter strawberries but leave attached to green leaves so the flesh forms a pocket around the center. Fill with cream cheese. Drizzle with melted chocolate. Top with powdered sugar. Arrange on a pretty blue plate with blackberries interspersed within and around.

WHY did we not take a picture?

I really don't know. Honestly, I have no idea.

Suffice to say, it was an incredible meal with awesome friends.

So that was, umm, ONE highlight of Saturday. The other could be described in words, but I feel it is better represented by a picture:

HA. I’m not sure how this was begun. I think Lauren and I were at the front desk doing something random, and we saw our awkward friend in the TV lounge and decided to dress up as cowboys to surprise him... ?

So Ondrea behind the desk offers to grab these AWESOME mustaches that we could use and I grab my stunna shades and bandanas. Earl and SkunkCatcher were gloriously born. We wow-ed Ricky with our improv skills – cattle-ranching, skunk-catching, dirty-bandit-wrestling… the adventures of Earl and Skunkcatcher are disastrously funny.

Later, we were invited to go get mochas at Peets in Poly Canyon Village with a couple dudes from the study lounge. I think it was our outfits that got us the date. =) We gladly donned our mustaches, mounted our trusty steeds, and made the voyage. Whenst we returned, we popped in "Seven Brides for Seven Brothers" with wonderful friends Maro and Alyssa and then pulled out the HENNA.

Seriously? Could this night get any better?

Then came Sunday.

If this were a read-along book, the following *ding* would be the signal to turn the page.


- Jessica <><

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Yearning for Love

I find myself wanting so much to have a hand to hold, a heart to share, a companion to walk through life with... I want someone to care deeply about me.. to want to know about me. Someone who loves me.

I think that's what EVERYONE is really searching for...

and I think that's what God is really searching for too.

Who will come to my intimate chambers? Who will return the love I have shown? Who will pursue me?

I feel like sometimes I get so close to truly loving.. then I freak out and things get weird.. It's like I won't let myself truly get close and love in freedom. Fear takes hold and I can't shake it.

It used to be easy.. when I was a child, I thought like a child. It was easy to trust... I didn't have a care in the world. But then I grew and adopted fears of my parents, of the world, of my own.

And Jesus came to free me from my fears. He wants to get so close to me. and I am so lazy and afraid.

I am so not good enough for him and yet he still pursues me. I do not understand why.

But I am grateful.

And I am learning to open up to him more... It's a sacrifice. A surrender.

Okay, God, here I am. I want to trust you. So bad. I remember what it used to be like.. so in love. I will follow you back to that place.

Love you Jesus,

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Like Sunlight Burning at Midnight..

I feel like I am experiencing a "dark night of the soul." I can still go through the motions of faith, but my heart is so broken on the inside..

I am aware that I am in this season, and i know it is ultimately good, and I will come out of it in strength.. yet, that doesn't make it suck any less.

I've been writing songs that are "half-songs.." I have the sad part written, the broken part, and know there is a redemptive part too that will come as I come into redemption myself.

The following song is where I want to get to...

Beautiful, Beautiful
By Francesca Batistelli

Don’t know how it is You looked at me
And saw the person that I could be
Awakening my heart
Breaking through the dark
Suddenly Your grace

Like sunlight burning at midnight
Making my life something so
Beautiful, beautiful
Mercy reaching to save me
All that I need
You are so
Beautiful, beautiful

Now there’s a joy inside I can’t contain
But even perfect days can end in rain
And though it’s pouring down
I see You through the clouds
Shining on my face


I have come undone
But I have just begun
Changing by Your grace

Father, I trust you. The part that is still hanging on by a thread says, I trust you Father.. You've brought me this far. I trust you...

- Jessica