Saturday, March 26, 2011


This is not an insect.
This is evil hidden under a gleaming black exoskeleton.

Hannibal can smell fear. It can also smell blue.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

T-Minus 10 Weeks Thoughts

I'm tired of complaining and getting positive feedback.What a Debbie Downer! Not.

I'm tired of venting my frustrations and being met with,
"It'll be fine."
"It's no big deal."
"Worse has happened."
or, worst yet,
"Well, look at the bad things happening in my life..."

I don't need that.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

To "Student"

I'm tired.

I'm tired of chasing, hounding, and pestering you to do your work.
I'm tired of playing the "Where are my boundaries?" game.
I'm tired of putting you first.

Monday, March 21, 2011

It reminded me...

I saw the moon tonight
As you will see it
When your night comes.

It was slightly squished on one side
You will see the squish, too, but
It might be on a different side since
You're standing upside down.

It reminded me . . .

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Journal Entry

R-E-S-P-E-C-T tell you what it means to me...
  • Doing things because you should, especially when you don't want to.
  • ATTITUDE (+)
  • Selflessness.
  • Honoring the ideas of others.
  • Putting faith in another.
  • Responsibility.
  • A necessary component of Jessica's self-esteem.

I miss having friends that I choose.

Journal Entry

If I can't face my giants, identify them, and stop ignoring them, how can I expect to be able to help students face their giants?
If I can't trust myself enough to open up my own place of hurt, of failure, of fear, how will students trust me to help them access their hurt place?
If I can't address or stop ignoring my problems, how can I encourage students to face theirs?

Perhaps this is the root of hypocrisy. I can't offer to serve until I've come to terms with my issues No; I don't have to fix or rectify them, but I do have to admit they're there. I have too many hairy, smelly beats/giants lurking in my closet and under my bed.
Call in the Ghostbuster. As soon as I face my monsters, He'll make 'em run.

I wouldn't blame the students if they didn't open up to me about their struggles; I wouldn't either. I don't. I don't even let myself admit I'm struggling. It's all fine; I've got it under control; no sin's got me. I mean, I know ALL have sinned, and I keep sinning too, but it's nothing compared to the rest of humanity.
You're one big mess, Jessica Mae. You NEED help. Tracy was more right than she knew.

I want to be needed. I want to be important.
I fear failure. I fear disappointing expectations.

They need Him. He's important.
I only fail without Him. All He expects of me is to let Him handle everything while I sit back and watch.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Update #28: La montaña!

Hiking through the Vertical Bog
The time has come!!

Mt. Kenya update: Adventure, out there!

(Warning: This is a tad long. Sorry. It was a pretty crazy adventure.
SHORT VERSION: Mt. Kenya. Jessica. Jessica with tired feet, legs, arms, knees, fingers, nose, etc. Jessica at peak. Jessica with chest pain. Jessica conquers life. The end.)

Monday Positives...

Inah: "Can I just stay for a bit?" after she finished her lab.
Chillin with Inah in the cafeteria
She comes to stand by me while I grade, watching the photo screensaver on my MacBook, making short comments sporadically. She turns to draw on the chalkboard.

"Is this red or pink?" she asks as she draws a curlicue.
"Good question. Magenta?"
"Hmmm. Yeah."

Moments pass. I finish grading a few more papers.

"Jessica M. Stotz...what does the M stand for?"
I tell her. I glance at the board. My name is printed in all caps in purple and red/pink/magenta. I smile.
Four more papers graded...I look at the board again. Now my name is in rainbow colors, with fruits and vegetables in colors to match.
"Eggplant! That's an eggplant by my name!"
She quickly grabs the eraser. "Do you like eggplants?"
"They're fine, I guess. Most times."
"Oh. Ok. ...there's a carrot. And you like apples?"
"I LOVE apples. Seriously."
She smiles. I smile.

I like smiling.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Journal Entry

WOSE; Nadine Nelson:

"When you focus on your giants, you stumble.
When you focus on God, your giants tumble."

Wednesday, March 09, 2011

Little Lucy

I've experienced a lot of "firsts" in Kenya.
Today's first had better be my last.

Babies aren't supposed to die.

Pray for the Mpiima family.
Pray for the Maxwell Academy family.
Pray for Jesus to come NOW.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Forever Powerful

I just had another how-GREAT-is-our-God-and-vastly-unfathomable-is-His-love moment (thanks to a package of love from Mom).

I think I understand why I don't have these moments all the time . . .
When I do, I am utterly overwhelmed and consumed; unable to stand; powerless; weak in the knees; dumbfounded; awestruck.
I don't think that we are humanly able to withstand the power of God except in brief, nearly infrequent glimpses.

Journal Entry

They say the first step of service is looking beyond self.

I beg to differ.

I believe self should be the central focus of a true servant.
If you don't first align self with the right, how can you show others how to do so?
If you haven't experienced firsthand what saving grace feels like, how can you explain it?
If you don't consecrate yourself first thing every day, how can you be equipped to serve others?

You can't.

Put yourself first.
Find Jesus for yourself.
Then, your only problem will be keeping Him in, rather than looking for His presence.
Jesus' love, a-bubblin' over.
Fill yourself first.
Empty buckets can't be filled from a dry cistern.

Journal Entry

You are so absolutely amazing
the world is so absolutely not.

The more I pursue You and become like You,
the more I hate this life.
I'd rather hate it with You than love it without You.

Sometimes I find myself
wishing You'd postpone Your coming
so I can complete my checklist
or because I fear the end...

come quickly.

change me.


Tuesday, March 01, 2011

Xander's Paper Lanterns

The world through the mind of a six-year-old . . .

Xander: Ms. Jessica, you wanna learn how to make a lantern?
Ms. Jessica: Sure.
X: Ok. Here's your sheet of paper. But you need SCISSORS...
J: Erm. I don't have any.
X: Ok. I can always get one from *there* (points to and tromps toward library office). Here. Now fold it in half...
One of THE paper lanterns
J: Lengthwise?
X: No, hot dog.
J: Oh.
X: Then unfold it and fold it in half; burger.
J: So burger is the opposite fold of hot dog.
X: Ummmmm, no; hot dog is in half this way and burger is in half this way.
J: Yes. Of course. I knew that.
X: Ok, now you cut it in strips like this, but not to the edge.
J: Could I tear it instead?
X: Well, it would be best not to....
J: Oh. Ok. I'll wait for the scissors.
X: Now you open it up and make a circle, then (grunt) staple (tongue out) it *WHAM!* Boy, this doesn't really want to staple...*WHAM. WHAM WHAM!*
Then you stand it up on end...see? It's like a lantern!
J: Yeah! And you could put a light inside to make it like a real lantern!
X: No, you shouldn't. It would probably catch on fire.
J: You're right. I'll just look at it.