Sunday, July 31, 2005

Matchmaker, Matchmaker...

I read two interesting articles recently on the Boundless website. One was about online matchmaking services, and the other was about the idea of soulmates. It was interesting timing for those articles because I had a conversation with a friend a few weeks ago about this very topic. That got me thinking about it again. I say "again" because I was actually a member of an online matchmaking website for a while last year. There were good things about that experience, like the opportunity to learn a lot about myself and what's really important to me. Overall, though, I can say emphatically that it's not for me. There are several reasons for that.
  • I think there was a certain amount of desperation motivating me to try a matchmaking service. I wasn't really trusting in God's plan and his timing. It was an effort to make my dreams become come true now. (By the way, I got over my pity-party phase and am now happily single.)
  • The process of being a member of the matchmaking service was very time-consuming. I spent almost every evening sorting through messages, answering hard questions, and deciding how far to go with communication. It started to take over my life, and was really a distraction from a lot of other things I could have been doing, like investing in real, flesh-and-blood relationships.
  • It seems like an unnatural way to meet people. It's easy to present yourself as something you're not when you're only sending messages back and forth. At first, I thought that was an advantage because it allows you to learn a lot about a person before things get muddled by physical attraction. However, I have come to believe that it's really not the best way to develop a friendship, and it's way too easy to say things to each other that the relationship is not ready for.

Okay, I'm stepping off my soap box now. What do any of you think about this?

Wednesday, July 27, 2005


I just ran across this website with nothing but pictures of people wearing socks with sandals! I think someone has too much time on his/her hands. Anyway, the picture of the guy shoveling snow in socks and sandals is pretty funny, as is the one of the hole-in-the-toe socks with sandals. (Disclaimer: No offense if you like wearing socks with sandals. It really is OK. I promise I won't take your picture if I catch you!)

Culinary Trials

This Wizard of Id cartoon was written just for me, I think. You see, I've had problems with restaurant food lately. First, there was the spider. I was calmly eating some grapes when all of a sudden I saw a small, dead spider complete with bits of cobweb nestled among the grapes! It was so gross. Don't people wash their fruit before they set in on a lettuce leaf and serve it to unsuspecting victims?!

I've also had two other problems recently, namely, a gnat stuck on my water glass and a clump of mud in my salad. Oh, the trials of my unbearable life. (just kidding) So anyway, that's why I appreciated this cartoon.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

What I've Been Reading

I seem to have gotten in the middle of a bunch of books recently, not to mention all the magazines I have piling up. More than three is a pile for me, in case you were wondering. Anyway, I've decided to try to catch up, so no more movies for a while. I'm officially on a reading blitz.

I went through three magazines last night and started on a fourth, one of my favorites: Mental Floss. I was also able to finish All Things Wise and Wonderful the other day. I think it might be the very best James Herriot book there is. His stories are so funny and really (yikes, I don't use this word very often!) charming.

Then there was Inklings, an interesting novel my sister borrowed from a friend (thanks Lindsay!). I did a skim-through read of that book in about an hour and a half because I could tell how it was going to all work out after I read the first two chapters and the last three pages. Before I started the book, my sister spoke to me in no uncertain terms about reading the ending first, but look at how much time I saved by doing that! Hee, hee.

Oh, and I'm also still in the middle of the Left Behind series. Faithful blog readers may remember that I was in the middle of it last February! Well, the current progress report is that I've just finished The Mark. I may finish the series before I turn 30....

Up next in my blitz: Grace Unknown, a book I now own since I ruined the copy I borrowed from the church library, but that's another story. Also: Surviving the Extremes, Desecration, and the lastest issue of Reader's Digest. I'll let you know how the endings are. :-)

Monday, July 25, 2005

A Bit of Philosophy

Someone forwarded this to me, and I thought it was simple, but profound.

First, see how you do on this little quiz:

1. Name the five wealthiest people in the world.
2. Name the last five Heisman trophy winners.
3. Name the last five winners of the Miss America.
4. Name ten people who have won the Nobel or Pulitzer Prize.
5. Name the last half dozen Academy Award winner for best actor and actress.
6. Name the last decade's worth of World Series winners.

How did you do? The point is, none of us remember the headliners of yesterday. These are no second-rate achievers. They are the best in their fields. But the applause dies. Awards tarnish. Achievements are forgotten. Accolades and certificates are buried with their owners.

Here's another quiz. See how you do on this one:

1. List a few teachers who aided your journey through school.
2. Name three friends who have helped you through a difficult time.
3. Name five people who have taught you something worthwhile.
4. Think of a few people who have made you feel appreciated and special.
5. Think of five people you enjoy spending time with.

Easier? The lesson: The people who make a difference in your life are not the ones with the most credentials, the most money, or the most awards. They are the ones that care.

"Don't worry about the world coming to an end today. It's already tomorrow in Australia." --Charles Schultz

Friday, July 22, 2005

Phantom of the Opera

Okay, I've been home from Switzerland for almost two weeks, and other interesting things are happening in my life. Nothing nearly as exciting as a trip to Switzerland, but life is definitely going on busily. In fact, the trip seems a little like a dream!

The highlight of this week was when I went with a few friends last night to see The Phantom of the Opera. It was really great. The singing, dancing, and special effects were all very impressive, except for the chandelier crash which wasn't quite as dramatic as I was expecting. Besides that, I really enjoyed the way they set up all the different scenes on stage. The props, lighting, and backdrops all changed in moments, magically transforming the stage. It was very well done.

There were some things I liked better about the movie version of The Phantom of the Opera, like being able to catch more of the emotion because it's all close-up. The play was exciting, though, because it's all live. Some of the effects, like a boat going across surrounded by mist, are more impressive in a play. I kept wondering, "How do they do that?"

Anyway, I'm glad I went, and I think I can understand how the musical has been so popular for so long. All this from the girl who can't stand opera! Go figure.

Wednesday, July 20, 2005

Airport Bus

I hope you're not using this blog for a chronological record of the trip! This picture was taken on the bus from the plane to the terminal when we arrived at the Frankfurt airport. We're looking pretty good considering how long we'd been awake!

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Luzern Arch

This is the entrance to the train station in Luzern. Nice, huh?! We had planned to set up a festival in a nearby square, but when we arrived, an orchestra was just getting ready to perform a concert! There was certainly a crowd there, but they weren't the least bit interested in us. So, we crossed the river, and set ourselves up along a busy sidewalk. Even though it wasn't quite what we had planned, it still worked out. We got to talk to quite a few people as they passed by.

A couple of friends and I met a woman who had grown up in Los Angeles, so she certainly spoke English! She said she had a Catholic mother and a Muslim father. She believed that any religion was fine as long as you believed in something. Even though she wasn't very open to what we had to say, we at least gave her some things to think about.

Monday, July 18, 2005

The whole gang... Posted by Picasa

...and the Houston bunch. Posted by Picasa

Friday, July 15, 2005

Hotel Garden

This was the garden balcony at our hotel. It was a very pleasant place to eat breakfast each morning and to relax in the evenings. One day, we sat down on the chairs without getting the cushions, and the hotel manager quickly showed up with an armful of cushions saying, "Please sit on a cushion. It's not healthy without it!" Being the uncultured Americans that we are, we laughed about that for days.

We could see three countries from the balcony, but Switzerland, Germany, and France all looked pretty much the same! Posted by Picasa

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Trip Report

Here's a copy of the letter I sent out this week to let my prayer partners know how the mission trip was. Enjoy!

Dear Friends and Family,

Thank you so much for your prayers for me while I was in Switzerland. It was an incredible trip in so many ways, and I’m so thankful I was able to go.

Our team had a total of about fifty people. We were from Houston, Birmingham, and Atlanta. We had all ages of people on the team, and it was so much fun to get to know each other and to work together. The seven of us from Houston had already known each other, but we got so much closer as we laughed together, prayed together, and encouraged each other. That was a real blessing for me.

We traveled in a convoy of seven vans throughout the week. Each day we left our home base on the southern tip of Germany and went to a different town for the day’s ministry. We visited Freiburg in Germany, and Zurich, Zug, Bern, and Luzern in Switzerland. We set up our festival in a central location and used balloon animals, face painting, caricatures, line dancing, and puppet shows to attract a crowd. It was a lot of fun, but more importantly, it gave us opportunities to speak with many people and share the gospel with them.

We met many different kinds of people from all over the world, including other Americans there on holiday! We also got many different responses to our message. In general, the Europeans were not very easy to share with. Many were not interested in even stopping to listen, and those who did stop were often not very receptive. It was frustrating at times, but it reminded us of the great needs there. It also was a lesson to me to trust in God. We are only responsible for delivering the message, and God is the one who changes hearts. We knew we were planting lots of seeds that would eventually bear fruit.

We did have the joy of seeing several people choose to receive Jesus as their Savior, which was very exciting. I learned to never think I can guess a person’s response. My friend and I were talking to different people one day and approached a couple who didn’t really look like the type who would be interested. They talked with us for a long time, though, and the woman was very interested. Her name was Bianka, and it was obvious God had been working in her heart. She was eager to hear what we had to say, and she ended up praying to receive Jesus as her Savior. Praise the Lord!

Another blessing on the trip was the opportunity to see the body of Christ in action. When we did the festivals, there were many things going on, and each person was able to use his or her unique talents, experiences, and spiritual gifts as we worked together towards a common goal. Whether it was drawing portraits, playing with children, dancing, preaching, or handing out tracts, it was all important. I enjoyed seeing how God used each one of us.

I was really awestruck by the beauty of Switzerland. There was breathtaking scenery almost everywhere you looked. As we drove around the country, I felt very privileged to be able to be in such a glorious place. Several people asked me if I would go back, and I told them I wasn’t sure. Who wouldn’t love to go to Switzerland again and again? But on the other hand, there are so many places in the world to visit. I guess we’ll see.

Those are a few of the highlights of the trip. You can look at photos of each day by visiting and clicking on “Switzerland Campaign.” I’ll also be posting pictures on my blog at

Thank you again for your prayers. I’m so thankful for each of you. God bless you!

Love, Katie

Wednesday, July 13, 2005


We saw this old cathedral in Freiburg, Germany. It was the one day that we didn't go to Switzerland. We did street evangelism in the square in front of the cathedral. It was obviously a tourist stop because we met people from all over the world there. A friend and I met a young woman from France named Christelle. She was there with a group of children who were on a tour of Freiburg. We really enjoyed talking with her because she wasn't in a huge rush like most people. She was also very friendly. We were able to share the gospel with her, and also parts of our own salvation testimonies. She wasn't ready to receive Jesus as her Saviour, but we gave her a lot to think about, and she really seemed to appreciate it. Posted by Picasa

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

The Beauty of the Swiss Alps

The beauty of Switzerland was absolutely breathtaking. Everywhere you look, there's awe-inspiring scenery. I took this picture on our day off when we drove up in the mountains to the towns of Interloken and Grindenwald. It started raining later in the day, and we couldn't really see anything then. The views early in the day made up for it, though. I think I could have spent many more days enjoying the Swiss Alps. I wonder if the people who live there appreciate it as much as they should! Posted by Picasa

Monday, July 11, 2005

Back From Switzerland!

Hi everybody! In case you didn't know, I've been in Switzerland for the last ten days on a mission trip. It was an incredible trip, and I'll have news and pictures coming sometime after I get unpacked and get over jetlag. For now, you can visit the World Link Ministries website to see some pictures of the trip.