Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Prayer of Saint Francis

Lord, make me an instrument of your peace.
Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
where there is injury, pardon;
where there is doubt, faith;
where there is despair, hope;
where there is darkness, light;
and where there is sadness, joy.

O Divine Master, grant that I may not so much seek
to be consoled as to console;
to be understood as to understand;
to be loved as to love.
For it is in giving that we receive;
it is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
and it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.

---Saint Francis of Assisi, 1181-1226

Friday, September 11, 2009

Tragedy from Above

Manhattan as seen from the ISS 8 years ago. Chilling.

Take some time to pray for those families today.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

You Are Who You Follow the risk of sounding nerdy, I have a confession. I love library school. Love it. Mostly because it just gets my wheels turning about so many cool things. Allow me to elaborate. Tonight I had my second Issues class, where basically the 15 or so of us who are graduating in December sit around and talk about important and controversial issues in the library world. Tonight's topics: how to use video games, facebook, Twitter, blogs, and wikis in libraries! We had quite the lively discussion about Web 2.0, which is the overarching term for sites that allow interaction between the user and site; all of them have some sort of self-generated information as well. I won't bore you with a lengthy definition, but in essence it's a big umbrella term for facebook, Twitter, blogs, wikis, YouTube...all those things. It's incredible to hear how libraries are using these new technologies to make information available in fresh, creative ways. One of my favorite things - book trailers. These are like movie trailers but for books! There are TONS of them on YouTube these days, and they're great for promoting books visually. Check out this book trailer for Sense and Sensibility and Sea's hilarious:

I've recently become a twitterer (tweeter?), and I must admit I was skeptical at first, but now I adore it. I can get celebrity, sports, world, national, political, and library news all in one place! The best part currently is that I get job postings when library jobs open up across the country! And I have them texted to me, so I know immediately! Pretty sweet! I'm currently following *gasp* 165 accounts, and the funny thing is that you can tell a lot about who I am from who I follow. You can see the budding librarian, the Christ follower, the LSU alumna, the college sports freak, the Harry Potter geek, the celebrity gossip fan, the intellectual, the film lover, and more, and it made me realize that (pun intended) to a certain extent, you are who you follow.

Of course, they drill this into your head in middle school with all the talks of peer pressure and such, but that's not really what I'm talking about. I'm talking about those things we fill our lives with...the things we pay attention to...the things we can't live without. What is most important to me? What am I letting rule my life? What is taking up all my time?

One of the negative consequences of the digital world we live in is the plethora of distractions created by these Web 2.0 technologies. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE them, but I've wasted my share of hours (or afternoons or evenings) on facebook enough to know that it's easy to get caught up in little things that will monopolize your life if you let them. It becomes so second-nature that we hardly notice the time slipping away. I'm guilty of letting the busyness of life take me away from what's really important in life...what's lasting...what's eternal, and that's loving God and loving people. We're indeed living in an online world, but don't forget to take time for real people and time for God. As human beings, we're wired for friendships and to help each other through life, looking to each other for guidance and doing life together, following step by step.

A relationship with Christ is the ultimate example of that friendship. We follow him through an abundant, joyful life (relying on him through life's hardships) and onto an eternal life with Him. Life is really all about who or what you're following...that is to say who or what you're focusing on. And with that, I leave you to ponder as I go practice what I'm preaching and pry myself away from facebook quizzes to spend some QT with my Jesus. :)

Parting words from The Word:

Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."
---John 8:12 (emphasis mine)