my life songs


my life is different than yours
April 15, 2011, 3:43 pm
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1. If you work, do you drive to work or take public transportation?
i work in a village in the middle of lots of cane fields.  the only way to get there is on a motorcycle.  i don’t know how to drive a motorcycle, so i pay a motoconcho (mototaxi) to take me.  lately i’ve been getting rides with rachel in her big fancy truck.  it’s fun.  we have some of our best conversations riding through the cane field out to the village.

2. How often do you get your haircut? Do you go to the same person every time?
last time i got my haircut was december.  i go to salon maria, my friend that does hair in her house.  i can’t say that i go to the same person every time though, because the time before that it was some walk-in place in round rock for 8 bucks.

3. Do you read the newspaper? If so, a hardcopy or the online version?
if i happen to be in some place of business that has a paper, i pick of the dominican one.  usually i read online, BBC.

4. What is the best book you have read this year?
just started “the help.”  i’m not done yet, but i can already tell i’m going to like it.

5. What is the best movie you have seen this year?
this just isn’t fair… i’m really behind on movies.  i usually wait until i go home, and then i sit on the couch watching every movie that’s on time warner in demand.  i just saw that movie “taken.”  i liked it, although i get freaked out by stuff like that.

6. Do you tend to crave sweet or salty foods?
usually salty.  lately though, i’ve been buying paydays every time i go to the big supermarket.  they have salty peanuts, AND sweet, chocolate caramel… best combination ever.

7. Do you eat breakfast every day? If so, what do you have?
yes.  tostadas, bagel, cereal, fruit, juice, eggs and toast, coffee… at least one or more of those things.

8. If you celebrate Easter, what Easter treat/candy are you most looking forward to?
eww… easter candy… eww.

9. How late is “sleeping in” to you?
1o

10. Where are you going on your next vacation?
vacation?  i get to go to the beach whenever i feel like it….. soooo, austin in june for my bro’s wedding.

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¿por qué?
April 9, 2011, 4:07 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

why?  from the time we are two we start to ask the question.  why?  we ask it about everything.  it persists as a theme in our lives, although beyond the age of two we are able to control our tongues from asking it every five seconds.  i believe it is in our nature to try to make sense of things… cancer, death, luck, zits (seriously though… what are those for?), miracles, poverty.  these are the things i find myself questioning these days.

lately the question has been directed at my immediate surroundings.  work has been heavy, and i find my mind consumed with the day to day struggles and not so much with the big picture.  so i was trying to do a bit of reflection, remind myself what it is i’m doing here.  i was reading some old journal entries, and this is what i found:

july 6, 2008

which is worse, that God cannot, or that He will not?  this is something that I find myself questioning a lot here.  i feel that we never really make much progress.  i know that the Lord is capable of miracles.  so why are these people still hungry, ignorant, without jobs, and poor?  why are these children not taken care of? why do they still behave so badly?  i need to see the beauty in God’s sovereignty again.  i need to see His glory.  i suppose faith could not grow if we did have something to doubtthis is what i live with.

that was written after i had lived here for almost a year.  now i’m approaching four, and i feel exactly the same.  i ask the same questions.  i realize this isn’t the kind of blog post that makes people want to empty their wallets to send in support and buy loads of stuff from the art co-op.  one would hope that in four years i would maybe have some things figured out.  the thing is, there is a lot that happens that we can praise God for; making salaries this past month, jela living with HIV, being able to buy supplies for four more months of work, the newly donated surger and maria’s excitement to use it.  it’s the WHY that i can’t get over.  WHY after all of those praises are things just not “fixed?”

rachel just recently wrote a blog discussing a similar topic.  she asks, “I wonder why that is.  Are we not doing enough? Are others not doing enough?  Is it unsolvable?”  so $100 a month helps; but is it “okay,” is it “acceptable” that these people still live on the brink of tragedy, a constant state of mild depression?  i don’t believe it is.

building someone a septic helps, but what happens when they don’t have the means or resources to maintain it?  a feeding program keeps kids from being hungry for the day, but poverty still exists.  a steady salary may provide a meal every day, but what happens when the refrigerator breaks, or when a family member gets sick, or when your sewing machine catches on fire?

rachel says, “As it turns out, there are tons of missing cogs, and finding my place in this community doesn’t fix anything, it just helps, and that’s it:  Pretty inglorious.”  these days rachel and i do everything we are capable of doing, we put 100% of our effort into each day.  (actually rachel sits somewhere around 110%, honestly i don’t know how she is able to do all she does.)   it’s true, it “helps,” but it’s hard to feel like actual progress is being made when the problems are still so immense.  i find myself each day saying, i don’t know what to do about that…

three years later, i’ve come full circle, and ask again, WHY?

this is the part where i conclude, where i say that i’ve had an revelation and NOW i understand.  only thing is, it’s just not that simple, nor is is just one thing.  loving and serving the poor is something that we should ALL do ALWAYS.  maybe i was naive in coming here, i now have a burden to carry to no end, but i’d rather be on this side of the fence.  i believe that God intends for us to carry on His work; and our inability to “fix” things, or even make progress, may reflect on our shortcomings, but it does not reflect on God’s desire for His children.  just because we don’t see the end does not mean that the Lord desires for His children to live in poverty and depression forever.  it points me to the Lord again, it forces me to have hope in Him, because there is NOTHING else that can solve these problems.  we do have a Helper, and we are able to accomplish great things, but the complete revelation will come in Christ alone.  so we wait for Him, and we hope, and we continue to do EVERYTHING we can, EVERY day.  we hope that things get better, and we are able to carry on because of the small things that others do to be Christ to us.



tyagroo- help my bro go to bonaroo
April 5, 2011, 2:47 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

http://tyagaraja.com/category/news/

LINK TO BONAROO CONTEST HELP US WIN!!!

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Peace
Tyagaraja

image by mark austin