Monday, December 19, 2011

The one where I move out.

Time is flying by!

In May I got to move about five times over the course of a month. Un-packing and packing up things again became a way of life for me. Then I moved into my little apartment and stayed until November. Then moved back to my parent's house. And now I am packing up yet again. Hopefully this time for the last time for the next two and a half years. So I can finish up my degree and get my MSW.

However, in the process of moving... I have been getting rid of a lot of things and trying to downsize my collection of material things. And since I love Friends, it reminded me of this episode... As much as I love living with my parents and as great as my apartment was... I can't wait to live with the women at the well! Stay tuned for a post about the new communal living project I will be living in. Hopefully until the end of college! :)

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Resources

I am a girl of resources.

If you ask me at any given moment, I am sure I could find a blog post, an article, or a book on any given topic. I love resources. And to be totally transparent, they have helped me with some very difficult struggles. However, these great resources have also been the source of a great stumbling block.

I look around at the media, the resources if you will... And I sometimes forget to create my own foundation. The more I read, the more I research, the more I wonder what other people would think of me. I get so caught up in the thoughts of others and perfecting myself. I lose sight of what I know to be true.

Lately I have really struggled with that: understanding who I am. Understanding who God is and even knowing if He cares... The past two days God has really spoken to my heart. A heart that has been really beat down and broken.

I have sat confused and in pain for many nights over the past six months... Wondering how God can bring good out of anything in this world. And then the past two days I was given this image, of a little girl on a swing... Swinging without a care in the world, laughing and experiencing joy like no other. It was crazy. Then I read Psalm 103 last night and it says: Praise the LORD, my soul, and forget not all his benefits—
who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion.

I thought about that: crowns. God crowns you with love and compassion. Do you know who gets a crown? A princess. A princess gets a crown. And GOD crowns us with love and compassion. I visualized that and it's crazy to me.

Then this second part resonated The LORD is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever;

God doesn't harbor his anger forever. He is abounding in love. These are the truth's about the God who loves us. I have a difficult time forgiving myself. I hold onto anger against myself for days and keep a list of all of the bad things I have done.

However, I serve a God who chooses to forget my sin. He chooses to love me and He is crazy about me. It's such a foreign concept to me. I just don't get it! Hopefully some day, I will... Until then: here I sit trying to just grasp a little concept of the God we serve and love.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

So excited!

For a few years now, I have heard of Donald Miller, and I have read amazing blog posts written by him like this one. That just make me smile and make my heart squeal.

Despite this loose following and suggestions to read some of his books. I haven't had the gumption to pick any of them up. Sometimes I drag my feet reading books that have high reviews... Usually I am not disappointed.

Anyways... Here I am now: picking up one of his books. Which one you might ask? Well, the one that many passionately supported as he has been creating it into a movie. And if you still don't know...

Blue Like Jazz
And I must admit: I am quite excited! Have you ever read any of his books? Any more positive or negative reviews? I would be happy to hear them.

Friday, November 11, 2011

Bad Luck? A Blessing?

It was around 8:00 at work and I began feeling like my throat was swelling up... I started shaking and shivering... I felt awful by 9:00pm.

I thought: not again! After being sick multiple times and spiking high (102-104) fevers over the past few months... I thought: I must make it through the end of my shift. I don't want to have another sick day. The next day I ended up in the ER.

My dad accuses me of not taking care of my body. I think about it: and really, I have! I have tried so hard to eat healthy, I don't drink, I don't smoke... I run if I don't feel like crap. I don't get it!

So after many breakdowns and a lot of doctors discussing possible relapse of the dreaded Lyme, maybe something going on with my thyroid... Or something else! Here I sit, a few days later realizing: I have had some really good years the past few years. And I am still extremely blessed.

I heard a song on the radio last night as I was driving home from work and it talked about healing the wound but leaving the scar. I wondered: even if I am healed: I still might have the scar of a weak immune system and an overly dramatic body that whenever it gets an infection: it goes crazy and spikes a high temp! But, I am walking, I have held my job despite some of the worst chapters of my life unfolding, I can run! And I am closer with God than I have ever been before.

And for this... Even in the midst of what an outsider may call: bad luck I will say: I am blessed.

Saturday, November 5, 2011

21st Century King James Version (KJ21)

Psalm 56

Be merciful unto me, O God, for man would swallow me up; he, fighting daily, oppresseth me.
2Mine enemies would daily swallow me up, for they are many that fight against me, O Thou Most High.

3In the time I am afraid, I will trust in Thee.

4In God I will praise His word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.

5Every day they wrest my words; all their thoughts are against me for evil.

6They gather themselves together, they hide themselves, they mark my steps as they lie in wait for my soul.

7Shall they escape by iniquity? In Thine anger cast down the people, O God.

8Thou countest my wanderings; put Thou my tears into Thy bottle: are they not in Thy book?
9When I cry unto Thee, then shall mine enemies turn back! This I know, for God is for me.

10In God will I praise His word; in the LORD will I praise His word.

11In God have I put my trust; I will not be afraid what man can do unto me.

12Thy vows are upon me, O God; I will render praises unto Thee.

13For Thou hast delivered my soul from death; wilt Thou not deliver my feet from falling, that I may walk before God in the light of the living?



Friday, November 4, 2011

This reminds me of when I was a kid!



How great are these little scenes?! I used to love to play with my doll house as a little girl. Mostly just setting up the rooms and taking them apart again... How fun! He uses toy train figurines. I am in love with the artist. Very talented.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

There's an Ap for that!



Everyone always says: there's an ap for that! And usually there is... At work I recently learned there is even an ap for breast-feeding moms! You can record the breast the baby fed on, how long, and even record the diaper changes! And how cool is this Ap? It's a shoebox ap that you can literally scan images and upload them onto the internet so you can share them with friends and family! And to think, I am still trying to get down texting... I feel like I was born with the wrong generation!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Last year around this time...

acorn cookies

I thought these cookies reminded me of the acorns I picked up last year around this time... As one might remember, I was running XC and at college. And my dear friend June, told me all about these acorns at Pottery Barn! Well, we were certain we could find them much cheaper on the ground. Much to our dismay, it was difficult to find whole acorns. Well, I hit jackpot out in a field one day and filled paper bags full of them. Which made one very happy June. :) And she even dried them out and they are now featured in her fall decor! She's the greatest.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Snuggle Sunday

There is something about a Sunday afternoon that screams nap time to me! I don't know if it was something that was instilled as a child... Or if I generally just find Sunday's as a day to catch up on sleep. Even in college, I would find a good book, or my bible! And snuggle up and soon drift off into dream land for Sunday afternoon! Today is no different! I am snuggled up and ready to nap!

I love this site!

Okay, so awhile back I found this site. And can I just say, if you haven't been to boundless, or read some of their articles... You definately should! Espeically if you are a young adult or single, or in college, or just looking for some random good articles to read. I always find interesting articles that make me think or go hmm.... It has been a good thing to pass the time when I have been sick all weekend!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Singly Blessed

My sister got married exactly 29 days ago...

So crazy to think about: my sister getting married! And upon my sister becoming a beautiful bride... It brought up question and conversation of where my knight in shining armor was...
At the wedding it became a frequent question... If there was a man in my life. And I could confidently say no, there is no one. However, the last few weeks I have thought more and more about this wedded bliss. With my sister married, and many of my friends getting engaged and some already married... I began thinking about my own marital status.

The past few days, I have spent time alone with God and really just thought about my life... And to be totally honest, I have never felt more blessed to be single. Though, it would be great to have a boyfriend or significant other, I have found great joy in being alone and being single. In this time, God has really worked on my heart and helped me become a better person. Not only that, I have also not had to think about the effect (or is it affect?) that my actions would have on others... I have been free sailing to spend as much time in devotions as I need... Or to stay up late or go to bed by 6pm!

This may sound a bit selfish... But honestly, if I wasn't single right now: I don't think that my time with God and the complete healing my heart has undergone in the past 4-5 months would have happened. It's incredible how God gets us all by ourselves and works in such crazy ways!

And now when people ask me, is there a man in your life? I can confidently say: nope! And it's totally okay! I have a peace that soon enough that chapter will come in my life: but why rush it? There is so much to be thankful for and excited for: today.

And I can vicariously live through my sisters joy and excitement with my new brother-in-law. :)

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

What does it mean to give our lives totally to God?

There is something exciting and mysterious about going into a life of full time missions. Going away to a third world country: investing into the lives of kids with faces covered in dirt. Leading a traveling VBS to kids that will never know what it is like to go to a pizza hut or to even be able to go to a store with a/c, let alone have a house that has a/c.

Sounds really worthwhile right? Sounds like a person who has given their life to a good cause. A life of mystery and adventure to those of us who have grown up in lives of comfort.

I feel like when you're a missionary, people automatically are amazed. They talk to them as though their calling is holier than anything that God could call them to. It's like woah. I think there is some sort of adreneline rush to having that type of ministry. Although, I have read stories and seen that the people in the field, find their lives much like the lives they lived before. Just with different struggles and obstacles.

There is nothing holier about the fights the married missionaries have behind closed doors about investments, or daily living... Than those that the people here in the U.S. have... We put our brothers and sisters in Christ on these special platforms and we live in this world that they have something better and a "better" connection with God.

Then there are people like Shane Claiborne, who live radical lives. I thought to myself: woah, what if I lived like that! Giving everything I earn to organizations, and to a communal living project. Tossing everything in, for the "better" of those around me. His life is intriguing. His conversations, and what he stands for provokes thought and convicts people for their commercialist lifestyle.

But still, if everyone lived like he did... Would we really have people to sow into them? Would we be able to go to the hospital, would there be Christians in the workforce to go to? I doubt it.

I guess I wonder, if selling my life for God and living totally for Him... Is in what I am doing right now. I sometimes actually, a lot feel like college is a waste. Or just a stagnent place that I am in. Or that this isn't exciting. I want something that's innvegorating and an adventure. I want my life to feel like I am white-water rafting for God.

I want to feel like I am going through the rapids for Jesus, and I want to bring God the most glory I can. But is it really selling everything and living without for the sake of Jesus. Or is that idea even something that has been Westrenized? I don't really know the answers... But I guess I have thought about it: and in the end, I still wonder.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

My heart aches

Lately, my heart has a heavy burden... It aches and it aches for the condition of our culture. I read quotes to encourage us on our Christian walks... Quotes like: God is real and we need to be real about what he is doing in our lives. And when the world says no way we say Yahweh.

Yet, I stand in a check-out line and have an older man behind me look at the cover of cosmopolitan and then say a sexual statement to me as plain as day.

I hear jokes about the poverty and how ridiculous people are or how they all work the system. I see calloused hearts for people, and an apathetic state. My heart is so broken and I wonder to myself: how can I avoid from getting that way?

I work in an environment where I see death readily, I see people who aren't ready for what they're facing all the time. I see situations where I think to myself: I could do that better. But I think about it, and I wonder, do people look at me and say: I could do what she is doing better? Probably... I strive to be different, my heart breaks for these situations every single day. But when push comes to shove: what am I really doing to change what is breaking my heart?

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Psalm 139
For the director of music. Of David. A psalm.
1 You have searched me, LORD,
and you know me.
2 You know when I sit and when I rise;
you perceive my thoughts from afar.
3 You discern my going out and my lying down;
you are familiar with all my ways.
4 Before a word is on my tongue
you, LORD, know it completely.
5 You hem me in behind and before,
and you lay your hand upon me.
6 Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too lofty for me to attain.

7 Where can I go from your Spirit?
Where can I flee from your presence?
8 If I go up to the heavens, you are there;
if I make my bed in the depths, you are there.
9 If I rise on the wings of the dawn,
if I settle on the far side of the sea,
10 even there your hand will guide me,
your right hand will hold me fast.
11 If I say, “Surely the darkness will hide me
and the light become night around me,”
12 even the darkness will not be dark to you;
the night will shine like the day,
for darkness is as light to you.

13 For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well.
15 My frame was not hidden from you
when I was made in the secret place,
when I was woven together in the depths of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my unformed body;
all the days ordained for me were written in your book
before one of them came to be.
17 How precious to me are your thoughts,[a] God!
How vast is the sum of them!
18 Were I to count them,
they would outnumber the grains of sand—
when I awake, I am still with you.

19 If only you, God, would slay the wicked!
Away from me, you who are bloodthirsty!
20 They speak of you with evil intent;
your adversaries misuse your name.
21 Do I not hate those who hate you, LORD,
and abhor those who are in rebellion against you?
22 I have nothing but hatred for them;
I count them my enemies.
23 Search me, God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
24 See if there is any offensive way in me,
and lead me in the way everlasting.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

What is important?

If you have followed this blog since it's birth in 2007. Wow. That's right! I have been blogging for four years now. That's just crazy.

Anyways, you will know a bit of my story. You will know that I had some years that were fallen into a black hole called Lyme disease. And you also may remember nights without answers and days of ICU, and unanswered prayer.

Well, a few weeks ago I got caught up in trying to think about how important school is. I get the importance of school, don't get me wrong: I have worshipped the school gods and even found my time of excessive reading of textbooks to be quite interesting...

However, is there a fine line between being SO worldly minded that you are no heavenly good? I know I have heard the quote that you can be so heavenly minded that you are no earthly good. But what happens when we put this pursuit of good grades into the forefront: when we pursue it with all we have because we believe it's what God would have us do?

I guess to me, I have found my studying to be important, but I also find my friends to be more important. Yes, there are healthy boundaries... But is it better to have lost all friendships while you were in pursuit of your degree and then pick them all back up again? (when let's face it, you're going to be burnt out and picking up the pieces of a chaotic last 2-4 years.) Or is it better to schedule a little time to catch up and take a breather. I don't know. I have been thinking about this a lot lately though.

I constantly wonder where my priorities lie and what makes them sit where they do... I do agree we are a product in some senses, of our past... But eventually we have to make choices for our futures and decide what's best to invest in.

Friday, October 21, 2011

Lately I have been thinking...

Sometimes I don't think it's a good idea to think because it lands me into a world of trouble. I have wondered why we are such relational beings... There is a quote that says: "Tis better to have loved and lost / Than never to have loved at all."

Now, interestingly, I don't believe the guy who stated this meant in all scenarios this is truly the case. There are some sincerely unhealthy cases of love, where I question: was it better to have loved than to never have loved at all? I look at the bulldozer sized destruction those situations have caused in my life and I wonder: was it better?

For me, I would have to say no. I would have been better off with no love at all. My heart must be cold and calloused for I would go to the extreme and say I would rather have never opened my heart to it at all. Hm.

So my question today is: is it better to love, and lose or to be picky... And skeptical and maybe not love often, or nearly as much...

Thursday, October 20, 2011

“I am a princess. All girls are. Even if they live in tiny old attics.
Even if they dress in rags, even if they aren’t pretty, or smart, or young.
They’re still princesses. All of us. Didn’t your father ever tell you that? Didn’t he? “

Sara Crewe, A Little Princess (1995)

Sunday, October 16, 2011



This song is great! Ahhh makes me want to fall in love <3. :) I love JJ Heller's voice regardless. So great.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

"Eric Liddell: You came to see a race today. To see someone win. It happened to be me. But I want you to do more than just watch a race. I want you to take part in it. I want to compare faith to running in a race. It's hard. It requires concentration of will, energy of soul. You experience elation when the winner breaks the tape - especially if you've got a bet on it. But how long does that last? You go home. Maybe you're dinner's burnt. Maybe you haven't got a job. So who am I to say, Believe, have faith, in the face of life's realities? I would like to give you something more permanent, but I can only point the way. I have no formula for winning the race. Everyone runs in her own way, or his own way. And where does the power come from, to see the race to its end? From within. Jesus said, Behold, the Kingdom of God is within you. If with all your hearts, you truly seek me, you shall ever surely find me. If you commit yourself to the love of Christ, then that is how you run a straight race."

From Chariots of Fire.

I only thought this was appropriate... Since today is RACE DAY!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Running

Running for me is therapy. I love the feeling of going out and pushing myself. I don't know why... I just do. I love to run. And well, a few weekends ago I got to watch a marathon in my hometown... What an awesome opportunity. Seriously if you ever get the opportunity: go watch a marathon.

After the marathon, I got to talk to a few different runners and I heard their stories... Running symbolizes something different for everyone. And that's what is incredible I think... But at the same time: we all have been given this gift and this drive, to go out and give it our best.

On one of my runs a few weeks ago, I saw a man that had lost his legs on my run... He was climbing into the back of his car and crawling through. I may not know what it's like to be missing legs, but I know the feeling of being confined to the wheelchair. The constant struggle and battle.

This reminded me what a blessing it is that I am able to run today. I am so thankful for my work-out's and getting up each day to run. This weekend I will be racing for our local Christian radio station Family Life Network, this radio station has been such a blessing to me.. I am so happy I get to represent such a great cause this weekend and run with the blessing that God has given me.

Tough Decisions

As I sat on the bus for a fundraiser, we began watching a movie...

Not just any movie, a movie full of sexual innuendos and what most would call inappropriate for any kids. The question that popped into my mind as the president of this organization was: do we pull this movie from the TV? Do we just apologize for the inappropriate scenes and hope that no one was too offended?
What is our role as Christians to stand up and be different? In Romans it says: Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will. (Romans 12:2). Would this small moment be considered how we conformed to the typical social mores of society instead of putting off our old self? I don't know. But it definitely has made me think... How will people know that I am a Christian if I don't stand up for the things that present others pure to Christ?




Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

I am not.

Sorry, this was supposed to be posted a few nights ago... Oh well! Here it is!
Each morning I wake up... And I enter the day with an expectation that this day will be better than the last. I enter it knowing God is there waking up with me and by my side.

Some days this same feeling follows me throughout the day. There it is, by my side holding me up. However, some days this feeling sweeps out from under me and I get caught up in things. And slowly, my good day becomes something that I can barely handle. Today was one of those blindsiding days...

I cried so hard I shook, every little stress had piled up and I was a mess... There was no smile to be had and I cried to the Lord. I was in the midst of the storm. And it felt as though Jesus was in the belly of my ship sleeping as I panicked in fear. I screamed to God over the roar of my cries... But it didn't seem to be enough. I couldn't get past it. I was a mess. My whole body shook. No peace just pain. I began to wonder about my life... Is it worth it? What have I done that has helped or honored God? How can God use this?

I began to realize: I was buying into lies. Lies about my life and about the things surrounding me. I have to counter them. I can't keep buying into the cheap imitation brand of faith: when the real deal is right before me. I have to name it and decide not to let it claim my heart... This is so hard. It's so hard to get the gumption to get off the couch or to reach out for help. And then it's even harder when your help seems to fade away and no one answers their phone.

But when we think about it: if we truly look at scripture we know that as Christians we have asked Jesus to come into our hearts and the holy spirit dwells within us. So therefore, the illustration of the ship can be quite true to our lives... We can awake Jesus from our hearts and tell him we need him to speak to the storms within our lives. And that's so cool to me.

I am not strong enough... I am not saved by my good deeds. But I know a God that is. And that's what is good enough. He is more than enough. And tonight and always I will bank my trust in that. However, that does not discredit the scary storms and the emotions and pain of feeling all alone.



I stole this video from my friend Shorty's blog. It seemed like it fit for me tonight too.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Tough.

This was the beginning of a post before I went to church today... The beginning of complaining about things going wrong and how hard and tough things are.

However, it is now a post of great joy and peace. Because I serve a God that is so much bigger than the temporary things of this world. And I know that He will always ring truth into my life. There is nothing so bad that God can't heal, redeem, or work through. God is that powerful. All we have to do is seek Him... And it really is that simple. I don't know, but it is pretty crazy to me!

He is faithful.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

"I want first of all... to be at peace with myself. I want a singleness of eye, a purity of intention, a central core to to my life that will enable me to carry out these obligations and activities as well as I can. I want, in fact- to borrow from the language of the saints- to live "in grace" as much of the time as possible. I am not using this term in a strictly theological sense. By grace I mean an inner harmony, essentially spiritual, which can be translated into outward harmony. I am seeking perhaps what Socrates asked for in the prayer from the Paedrus when he said,  "May the outward and inward man be one." I would like to achieve a state of inner spiritual grace from which I could function and give as I was meant to in the eye of God." - Anne Morrow Lindbergh

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Awaiting validation

A few years ago, I found tears hitting against my keyboard as I wrote this post.

Today my tears fall for different reasons... However, as I read the comments from women on that very post. I find a universal longing within the women both grown and still teenagers. We await a validation. We sit remembering days of heart break and heart ache. Boys who have told us no, or have not noticed us at all... And absence of men within our lives. A father, uncle, step-father, grandfather.... A man that has said hurtful things into our hearts that leave scars.

We look to others in this constant battle to see our worth, our beauty. We fill our hearts with chick flicks, and romance novels. Trying to understand what it feels like to be loved.

Oh how I wish I could tell the seventeen year old me to hold on to that moment and to try to see God's precious blessing. Oh how I wish that I could allow God to hold my heart tenderly and totally surrender... Yet it seems God is constantly fighting for my heart. And it seems as though it's a universal ache we have in our hearts. The fragile state of my heart the tender wounds that have been left.

I look back over the years, and I am amazed... I wonder: how did I make it until now? And I continue to remember how very small I am. Yet how infinite God's love is... And I know He will validate my heart no matter what... And He will heal the wounds and scars that are left broken and pouring out of my broken heart. God has this under control.

Monday, August 22, 2011

A veil of anxiety

Lately it seems like all I hear about is the beauty I have or how we are the beautiful brides of Christ. I read the book "Do you Think I am Beautiful?" and it depicts this striking picture of the confidence of a bride when she walks into the room. The breathtaking picture of a woman walking in with her white gown and in all the glory. People tear up just at the sight of her.

After the last few days I have really started to realize there is something blocking me from God. Much like there is something blocking the people at the wedding from seeing the bride in her full beauty. The bride has this veil over her face... You can see through it, but it's blocking the pristine clarity you once had.

For me, this has been anxiety. I have been realizing that it has taken captivity over my life and I can't even see past some situations due to the fear of being wrong or failing. I can barely handle the attack it has over me and the moment the anxiety comes it seems as though my whole life stops.

I got thinking about this today: and I thought about how the bride is known as the most beautiful woman in the room. But there is something clearly blocking her view to the outside world... And as I look at scripture, I see that God has an incredible love for His people. As a matter a fact, in 1 John 4:18 it says: There is no fear in love. But perfect love drives out fear, because fear has to do with punishment. The one who fears is not made perfect in love.

So I continue to battle out this moment, standing in awe of the God I love so much... But awaiting his hands as he lifts the veil from my face and removes the barrier of anxiety. This constant fear and confusion that block my view of what He really is... A moment to step back and realize that I am in love with my creator and His love is enough.

Right now it feels like I can only take peaks out from under my veil before it falls back over my face again. And for me anyway, it always feels like there is something that we struggle with: that keeps us just on the edge of being able to grasp the God we love. And that's the essence of it: no matter what He will always be too big to understand.

Last night I was driving home from a friend's house and I was in a bitter mood. And this song came on the radio: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VJ_XEt1QpYg and it was really cool. It was like God came and melted away my bitterness. He knows I listen when I hear a song... And through that my bitterness started dissolving like snow.

"Someday she'll trust Him and learn how to see Him Someday he'll call her and she will come running and fall in His arms and the tears will fall down and she'll pray, I want to fall in love with you." What an incredible picture... If you're a woman or a man, just imagine that moment: running and finally knowing that perfect love without any doubt or barrier. No veils of this world and no fears to hold us back. Satan's grasp totally lost from you, just allowing God to sweep you up. For me, that is a crazy picture to imagine... But deep in my heart I know it to be true and I can rest in the fact the day is coming.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Singing From the Rooftops

Around two months ago now... I made the decision to take a semester off from my college career. Some things had happened that I really needed to deal with and I didn't think it would be wise to just put them off to deal with when I graduated in two short semesters.

It soon became one of the biggest leaps of faith I think I have ever taken... As soon as I started telling people my plans it was as though I had let down every person I told. Some supported me... Others looked at me like I was totally nuts. I told them I was planning on working at my old job... Taking a few classes at the community college and just hoping for the best. Little did I know, I would not be called for hours at a job I could easily get 60 hours a week at last summer... And soon I would feel incredibly scared about where I was going to get money to pay my bills with.

I continued to wait on God and just kept telling everyone God will provide! Slowly, it was getting harder to say: God will provide! The end of the month closed in and I had no money for rent and I was scared to death... As friends continued to badger me about what I was doing with my life and how I was going to make ends meet... My smile had faded... But the promise remained... I continued to trust God would provide in some unseen way.

I finally got to work one long weekend... This was the first time I had worked since before January, and let me tell you: God provided. He totally has wow-ed me and I was beyond blessed... He left me singing praise to Him and I believe it was no coincidence. During the time I was not working, I was totally devoted to Him and constantly praying about everything that had gone in the worlds eyes: wrong.

I have been so confused and it's as though today God whispered in my heart: I haven't left you... I still love you, and just continue to rely on me.

I just want to close with a thanks to God because He is faithful... And it's not about me at all... It's all about Him.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Texting: A Hate Story

So in the midst of probably one of the craziest transitions of my life...

I had someone kick my phone and the keyboard popped out. From that point on, my phone had been changed forever. The keys didn't work well and it was nearly impossible to text or call anyone on...

After a month of switching around phones, I got a new phone!

It was all jazzy and new with a slide keyboard and a totally different set-up. Since I don't really like the fancier phones... You would think this would be the perfect phone. The honeymoon phase didn't last long... As a matter of a fact: it lasted a few days.

It all started when I was trying to communicate to tell people where I was and such in a trip out of state. My communication was handicapped quite a bit. However, I thought things would get better. Once the phone and I got acquainted better. Well, then one friend only has texting on their phone... So I was having quite a serious conversation with her one night: and poof!

Add a third party... The phone had started doing this mystery freeze thing where it would freeze and then send the message to the last person I had texted instead of the person I was currently texting. I had a mini break down... Luckily it wasn't too bad and things got cleared up quickly. However, as the days went on, it was as though my phone was cheating on me. He continued to text incorrect people, even called the wrong people. I was thinking that we might need a separation.

Well, after a strong worded text to someone who got me quite angry... I didn't get a text back from the person. So there I showed him. Well, come to find out, I didn't show him I showed another him. Someone who has been nothing but nice to me... Needless to say, I am ready for a divorce!

I called my mother tonight telling her of my dilemma and she had a simple solution: I am always saying, I hate  texting... Well, needless to say: she offered getting rid of texting! After some thought, I feel as though technology continues to push people further and further away from each other instead of closer and closer. With more and more technology and ways to communicate: it seems like we should be a society that is extremely close knit. Wrong. It is awful! I feel like I have become more distant from close friends, and then things like this happen and let's just say: it isn't a quick fix trying to explain to people why got a mean text. Which also says something about my character I suppose too: I was just reading in my bible study tonight about being slow to anger...

Does this happen to anyone else? Am I the only technologically disadvantaged person? Would I lose total cool points in ditching texting after already ditching facebook as well? And hm: after further investigation: maybe losing texting isn't that bad after all... I mean spell check doesn't even recognize it as a word!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Inspire.

Okay so around a year ago I was introduced to Come&Live! and I thought it was pretty cool. Visited their website a few times and that was it. Then last night a friend of mine came over and told me about this video. He told me it was aprox. 30 minutes and totally incredible. So... I began watching it and within the first five minutes I was totally drawn in.

I have really had our generation and society as a whole on my heart lately... I am beginning to wonder and think: how can we as a generation and a society really transform* how we live our faith out on a daily basis. I recently read an article about how the gospel and conversion to Christianity isn't always effective. Or lives that aren't truly transforrmed. However, after watching this video I began to wonder: if someone who had never seen God or really known him as their personal savior... Had their first encounter with God seeing God in total action. Don't you think that would totally change their life? And maybe, just maybe be a deeper effect than just a quick prayer? No doubt that people who pray prayers of salvation aren't transformed... But I am beginning to think more and more that our society has gotten church all wrong...

I have been reading the gospels lately and I constantly think about Jesus' ministry and then I wonder: is that truly what we are doing? Going out and healing the sick? Feeding the poor? Loving our neighbors as ourselves? Just thinking and wondering how God can use me in even a small way to touch the big world.

*1trans·form verb \tran(t)s-ˈfȯrm\


Definition of TRANSFORM

transitive verb

1a : to change in composition or structure b : to change the outward form or appearance of c : to change in character or condition : convert

2: to subject to mathematical transformation

3: to cause (a cell) to undergo genetic transformation

intransitive verb

: to become transformed : change

— trans·form·able \-ˈfȯr-mə-bəl\ adjective

— trans·for·ma·tive \-ˈfȯr-mə-tiv\ adjective

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

beauty

I am reading the book Through Painted Deserts by: Donald Miller... And I came across this excerpt which is now a quote: a little background the two guys (Don and his friend Paul) are on a road trip and Don asked his friend Paul what he was looking for in a woman:

"'I guess I'm looking for what any guy is looking for. I want a companion, you know. Just someone to share life with. I want her to be my biggest fan and I want to be her biggest fan too. I want us to raise kids in a home where they know their parents are in love with each other and with them. I guess that's all I want.' Realizing he had taken the question seriously, I offer a patient comment, just above a whisper, loud enough to know he can hear me. "That sounds like a pretty good want."
"It ain't bad," he says. "It isn't too much, you know. I don't want the perfect girl, really. You figure every girl is beautiful, you know. It's our arrogance that makes us think one is better than the other."
"What do you mean?" I ask.
"I don't know. I was just thinking about girls the other day and wondering, you know, why some girls just get ignored and others get worshipped, and I really got this feeling in my chest like all of that wasn't true. Can't be true. Doesn't make sense. Like maybe if you can't love a girl who isn't all perfect, then you can't really love a girl who is. Not for real. Not unconditionally."

I thought this was interesting. I recently went to dinner with a dear friend of mine, June, and one thing about June is that she speaks life into me. Every time I go out with her, or any encounter I have with her: she encourages me. She has stood behind me when some very dark things have come over my life. And she has whispered words of encouragement when everyone around me is doubting my sanity. And as we chatted, she once again spoke truth and life. She gave me permission not to date for awhile... And it's funny because right after she said that: I had a huge weight lifted off my shoulders.

Now going back to this quote from the book... It's interesting because it seems as though constantly there is this double standard for women that they must be perfect. People will turn around and say how some women are beautiful or turn their heads for a second glance... While other women walk through life never turning heads, or being noticed at all. I thought it was interesting what Paul said, that it's our arrogance that one woman is better than another.

Hm. It is not all that often that we may say that we are arrogant. However, does it not say in the bible that we are all crafted in God's likeness? I think this happens to me a lot... I see beauty all around me and see the flowers and the trees the hills and the clouds. And think: wow God, today you sure out did yourself! I mean yesterday, I thought the sky was beautiful... But today God, wow. Look at that! And so the story goes... Each day I find new things to be amazed at. But then when I look in the mirror, I think hm: God, why do I have that zit? Or you messed up here... Look at how my curls are falling today God... Why can't you make each one equally curled and perfect? Maybe then...

Tonight as I was looking into the mirror and thinking about everything... I thought these same thoughts... Maybe then... And it was like God was deep inside me saying, maybe then what? What will happen when your zits are gone? Or your curls fall perfectly? And I don't know that I have the answer to that question. Would I notice? Or would I find a new problem? Do others notice? And does it really matter? Are we truly so arrogant that we have forgotten that we are each handcrafted? I don't know. But as I thought about it... I started to wonder... If each day I found the really good things about myself and put them in a jar. If slowly, I would find there are many more good things than flaws.

My encouragement today for my friends out there: is to look in the mirror and smile... You are beautiful/handsome, and you have a special purpose on this earth. So you have every reason to smile (and it's proven everyone looks better smiling)!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Music

The last few days I have posted a lot of songs on here...

As I grow further in my life and my walk with God, music seems to be something that fills my life with a profound amount of truth. We can walk into a church service and sing songs and through those songs if we really contemplated the lyrics we might be surprised at what we were singing. I mean we sing of shrouds, and all of these other things and sometimes I wonder: do we even know the meaning of the words we are singing?

Once in awhile you might hear a word in conversation and go wait, what? Or you might question the authority. However, I find it interesting, that in church we so often sit and speak these profound truths and sing of healings and being on fire for the Lord. However, then once we step out of our seats Sunday morning, our lives go back into the same sequence and we go back into living into motion. Do I have the ingredients for dinner tonight? Did I talk to this person? I have to make sure I connect with so and so before they leave today, and oh! I should ask if they want to meet later this week for dinner... The list goes on and on as we plan. And sometimes, God forbid, we are even going through our check lists during worship.

Mentally, we're checking out: we say we're prone to wander, and Lord take our spirits with our lips... And in our hearts we're getting further and further from the Lord and our faith. Then when we hear convicting sermons or people talking about getting a church like the one in Acts, we wonder why our society isn't more like that...

We are so used to zapping things in the microwave, getting things done so quickly and at our convience... That we have totally lost the concept of putting in the time for our faith. I have found that a lot of the scripture I have memorized has been through song that I sing within church and then go and look up later.

Wouldn't it be incredible to see a church that sang about what they were doing after service, and throughout the week? Wouldn't it be amazing to see the Lord every Sunday? May we really be convicted by the lyrics we read and when we don't know the meanings behind the words: why not look them up? Or research them out? I recently read an inspiring article about not knowing the meanings of words here.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

This is the story of a girl...

One of my friends told me tonight that this song reminded them of me.

I was kind of like, uhh... thanks? Then they explained how my smile is beautiful yadda yadda but lately all they have seen and heard are tears. Hm. I got thinking about this and those I guess are pretty true statements.

I have been doing a lot of thinking lately. A lot about blogging and other things. I can't be totally honest on my blog any more due to some twists and turns that my life has taken. I have thought about closing my blog and making it private. Then I could monitor who reads and who doesn't read... For now, I am using the vague approach because it seems to be working.

Anyways, about a month ago my life that had really taken some turns for the best case scenario took a turn for the worst. And since then, I have been left picking up pieces. From that time, I have had some very cruddy things happen. But I have also found that there are still some very incredible things happening in my life. And I think that it has been incredible to see those beautiful things happen in my life.

I am beginning to realize the importance of friendship and really radically loving people. I am starting to get a glimpse at feelings I never thought I would understand... And you know, I guess for me it has been a good experience. In conclusion, I just wanted to remind myself really: no matter how much I cry, or you cry, we still are blessed. And ultimately: it's totally okay to cry. It's actually normal.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Chaos

Lately, my life has been full of noise. Full of chaos. It has been out of control in fact.

I really had a horrible period of time and I could not even sleep at night. Life had lost it's meaning and I was certain my faith was a hoax. I was so filled with bitterness and frustration. I constantly was praying prayers to God, I hate this life, I hate this world, and because of all of this: I need more time before I am quiet before you.

I did not set quiet time aside, and even when rooms were completely silent, my mind was going a mile a minute. I just could not settle down, I could not relax... I was swirling around and around. A week went by and I felt I was losing more control. Then another week passed... Though my outside expressions became more controlled, my inward feelings were deep and dark. I was in pain. I was also very good at hiding my pain and hurt.

Then finally, I moved away, I got away from everything and I was forced to face myself. There weren't any distractions. And while I was sitting on facebook of all places... I got the feeling deep in my heart: "you can't run and hide forever."

That shook me. Wait? Am I hiding? I just thought I was... well, uh... busy.

It was by no mistake that I had just heard a sermon on slowing down our busy lives and really taking the time to seek out opportunities to love deeply.

Fast forwarding to tonight. Things started getting better, and I was really feeling stronger. I realized the importance for me to read scripture and to spend time actually trying to digest what God was doing in my life. It seemed a little crazy though! It seemed very crazy that God could make good out of something very bad... Yet, I have been amazed to see that when I quit analyzing, and thinking about all the bad... Clarity comes and I see the very good works that are happening.

I have found that I have been encouraged so much and I am extremely blessed. Tonight this scripture has really lifted me up:

Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.


Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you.
Thanks for Their Gifts

I rejoiced greatly in the Lord that at last you renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you were concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it. I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

Yet it was good of you to share in my troubles. Moreover, as you Philippians know, in the early days of your acquaintance with the gospel, when I set out from Macedonia, not one church shared with me in the matter of giving and receiving, except you only; 16 for even when I was in Thessalonica, you sent me aid more than once when I was in need. Not that I desire your gifts; what I desire is that more be credited to your account. I have received full payment and have more than enough. I am amply supplied, now that I have received from Epaphroditus the gifts you sent. They are a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God. And my God will meet all your needs according to the riches of his glory in Christ Jesus.

 To our God and Father be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

Philippians 4: 4-20

Friday, April 29, 2011

It's 2:30 AM

So I decided to write a blog post. You might be wondering why...

At first I wanted to write this blog post as a reminder once I am out of college that this is the kind of stuff I will NEVER miss about college. I will not miss getting up super early and trying to get everything done the night before. I will not miss cramming all of my knowledge onto papers at the end of the semester. I will not miss presentations that take forever to make and re-recording things so that they look better.

However, what I realized is I will really miss these things. Tonight, even though I am extremely exhausted... I had fun talking with friends. Hanging out with girls and laughing about stupid stuff because we were so tired. I really do love college and I love the people I am with. If you had asked me this at the end of last semester I would not have agreed. However, I am glad I got to make silly videos and I hope the presentation is awesome.

Most of all: I hope I get up for my 8:00 AM class. Off to bed.

P.S. I have no spelling errors even at 2:30... That's impressive.

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Finally Fit

This past year I have felt off so to speak... It has been hard for me to connect with others and I have really felt as though I didn't have any friends. From the outside people might have looked at me and said I had many friends, however, the true friends that result in self disclosure... It felt like there were none.

I prayed that God would send someone, send anyone to be my friend. Well, this past weekend I went to Spring Formal... And it finally felt like I fit. I went as a group date with a bunch of girls and we just went to have fun. At first it was a little awkward and we didn't know how it would turn out... However, once the dancing got started. I danced for four hours straight! We barely ever stopped. It was so awesome! My friend Lauren really made me feel like I belonged.

From running together just about every day and just hanging out... I have finally found a friend. It might sound totally ridiculous but this was the first time in awhile that I just had fun and felt like I belonged. It was awesome!

Monday, April 18, 2011

thump... thump... thump...

I was reading a post by a friend of mine and it reminded me of the thumping of my feet as they hit the ground while I run.

There is something about the rhythm that your body creates as you run that is truly incredible... Since today was the Boston Marathon, I felt it was only appropriate to post about running. How free-ing it feels the combination of birds and cars zooming past. Feeling motivated to gracefully place each foot in front of the other.

Incredible. Peaceful. Amazing.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Worms

A perplexing thought came over my mind today and I really felt I must share it.

Today like many days in Rochester, was downcast and wet. For some they shared the laments that if it is not snowing, it is raining. I may agree with them to some extent, however, I have looked out my window to see beautiful green grass and I realize that without the rain I would not be seeing the beauty of green.

ANYWAYS, that's besides the point.

As I was walking to my dreadful 8:00 AM class, I saw worms scattered about the parking lot. Now, historically, I have felt very bad for the worms and I will pick them up and toss them into the grass. However, today I just was looking at them. Then I got thinking about them: I wondered...

When I pick up the worms and toss them into the grass, is that killing them sooner because the water table is so high in the grass? Then I wondered is it worse to get crushed by someones shoe who doesn't see you... Get eaten by a bird. Get ran over by a car. Or to get dried up by the sun if it ever comes back out...

What do you think? If YOU were a worm, what way would you rather die?

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Christ has no body but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,
Yours are the eyes with which He looks
Compassion on this world,
Yours are the feet with which
He walks to do good,
Yours are the hands,
with which He blesses all the world.
Yours are the hands, yours are the feet,
Yours are the eyes, you are His body.
Christ has no body now but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,
Yours are the eyes with which He looks
compassion on this world.
Christ has no body now on earth but yours.
- St Theresa of Avila

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

For all the perspective students...

As some of my friends and I have talked... We have discussed our desires for perspective students. One of the biggest ones is that we wish people who visit our school could grasp how truly amazing the staff at our dining commons are...

Now granted, I rarely dine there and prefer to make my food in my room. However, there is a special Garlock worker that has stole my heart. She always has a smile on when I see her and she even gives me newspaper clippings that made her think of me. Some of these clippings include fashion presentations at the local museums and other hot local attractions. Which is very fun and so very kind of her.

It's interesting, though the school's food might not be fighting for top in the country... It definitely has top notch staff that have great stories and incredibly interesting pasts. It has been such a blessing to be at a school where I can get to know the dining commons workers so well.

So to perspective students: don't take our interesting array of workers in our dining commons at face value, they are so awesome.

Monday, April 4, 2011

I will extol the LORD at all times;


his praise will always be on my lips.

I will glory in the LORD;

let the afflicted hear and rejoice.

Glorify the LORD with me;

let us exalt his name together.

I sought the LORD, and he answered me
he delivered me from all my fears.

Those who look to him are radiant;

their faces are never covered with shame.

This poor man called, and the LORD heard him;

he saved him out of all his troubles.

The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him,

and he delivers them.

Taste and see that the LORD is good;

blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.

Psalm 34:1 - 9

Monday, March 28, 2011

Take A Stand against Injustice

Last night I went to A Night to Honor Israel. We learned about modern day Anti-Semitism and our role as Christians. I got extremely pumped up and really compelled to think about the modern day injustice that is happening all around us. For the next week, every day I am going to highlight an injustice that is going on and how we can help.

Today I wanted to talk about the AIDS epidemic. We think about the cost of $4 prescriptions that we have. Most of those prescriptions will last us two weeks and cure infection. We go to the drug store and have easy access to the drugs we need for the most part.

Did you know for 40 cents a day we can help people with their fight against a life saving agent? What can you do with 40 cents? I saw this video and it made me think. A piece of gum, a party blower, a hat... Or a person's life? The reality is there is a silent epidemic sweeping the nations in country's like Africa. There is a loss of a whole generation that is no longer living due to the HIV/AIDS virus. And it makes me wonder... What are we doing?

I am not asking that you travel to Africa and bind up the broken wounds of our brothers and sisters. But I am asking you to search your heart... And commit to take a stand. Do not just sit around, commit to do something.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

On Friday at 5:00...

The voting will end...The votes will be counted and a winner will be named. I am hoping that Jude and Julianne will be in the #1 victory seat on this day. You can make this happen by voting here. And posting this link to your blog. This couple is from my college and our whole school has been backing them in this contest. It would be incredible and mean a lot if you helped bring them up to the number one spot. I voted, it takes like 10 seconds! And your vote means a lot it has been a neck in neck race. So take a few minutes and vote and send this out to others as well! If you facebook, put it as a status. Do something, they will be forever grateful.

So go ahead and VOTE

Thanks guys!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Rita's

Have you ever had Rita's? If not, you're totally missing out. The photo above is from the Washington DC trip: as a treat our whole group was treated to Rita's! We were "good". I was so very thankful. THEN: I went home this past weekend and Rita's was giving away FREE ice! I was totally pumped and of course we went and got some. And of course, I could not make up my mind and ended up getting three flavors in one cup. It was spectacular. So I may have jokingly said: Rita's has changed my life. But no really, I think it's probably a favorite summer treat for me. And since the one back home just opened again... It's beginning to look a lot like summer! I cannot wait to go running in warm weather again! I am really excited about the prospect of the months to come. And if you haven't had Rita's.... You need to try it. It just might change your life too. 

Friday, March 18, 2011

We were born to embrace not accept it...

I heard those lyrics and it made me think of a lot of tough things that Christians are faced with. What do we do in response to this sin or that sin? We must embrace and love our neighbors but not accept what they do...

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Stuck.

So it seems as though for the first time in a long time... I have not really had any difficulties with my Lyme disease in quite awhile. Things had been going really well for a few months. Well, much to my dismay things have been increasingly difficult in the last month or so. It started with a conversation while studying for a test with a pretty good friend of mine... We were talking about the test and I began to lament about how slow my brain felt... And how it might even feel like it did back when I was in high school.

Granted, I was still getting above average grades in most of my classes... I was still doing pretty poorly for me. Today one of my professors took me aside and asked me if I was okay. She told me that she was concerned because my writing had dramatically changed from last semester. She said she didn't understand it. I told her I felt like I was a smart person stuck in a stupid person's body. I have had these very complex thoughts and really understand concepts but I cannot adequately convey them or tell others about them.

I have been very frustrated this semester as I have devoted tons of time to my studies and working hard and it just doesn't seem to be paying off. I continue to work hard but I can't get my thoughts clearly out. I am left in a mess. I feel stuck. I don't know how else to explain it other than I am stuck in a stupid person's body. Hearing someone else notice my difficulty was comforting because I knew it was something real that I was struggling with... Now I believe I will defeat it and I am really praying God will continue to stand by my side as I conquer these new battles.

I just wanted to write a note from my old point of view... And touch base with the fact that though it has been much better there is still a process that must be worked through. However, I am so blessed to be running and biking and doing things. This is minor in the grand scheme of things but frustrating none the less.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Sweet Puppies

Today is an absolutely gorgeous day. You still are in need of a jacket but the weather is remarkable. The sun is shining and I wish I had more air in my tires so I could go on a bike ride. Anyways, here is a little puppy love to enjoy the day.

I think of puppies and spring because people are always out walking their dogs during this time of the year. Ahh! I want a dog when I get a house of my own. I think I will get another one just like the dog I currently own, since after a runner's world magazine article: she was reported to be the best dog all around... I mean who could resist a face like this?? Except for maybe my mom...

Monday, March 14, 2011

Suffering passes, while love is eternal. That's a gift that you have received from God. Don't waste it ! (paraphrase of Kezia's words to Laura, 4.01 Castoffs)

Comes to the save

This website comes to my save more often than it should. If you don't know where your phone is 90% of the time... You should definitely check it out.

Eye Glasses


It has been almost one year to date... The day that my eye glasses took a turn for the worst and I lost a bow off them.

They experienced someones destructive buttocks meeting them front and center. It was a crushing experience. And after that moment, they were a one bowed bandit. It was a traumatic event and after that, I wore my contacts every day. Until one day that my eye turned red and a friend loaned me some weak prescription old glasses...

Well folks, I would just like to inform you that I am no longer on the prowl for a new pair of glasses. While my mom was up here for my birthday, we got new glasses. Now granted, they are nothing like my old faithful one bowed bandits, and they are my prescription... So there is no real adventure in them. However, now I can see! This is monumental. I am pumped.

Thanks Mom!

Sunday, March 13, 2011

Growing is Forever


Growing is Forever from Jesse Rosten on Vimeo.

May we each be life long learners because: growing is forever.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

"Became. The gospel in one word-- redemption's story shrunk down to six amazing letters. Do you see it? Became is a compound word, meaning it is comprised of two words- the word be and the word came. Wow, now do you see it? ...

... BE came flesh.God arrived with skin, the Divine in the form of a sweaty, laughing boy playing with other kids in a narrow street on a summer afternoon. That's how God chose to connect with us, to deliver us, to come for us. He didn't send a note, an e-mail, a check, a cosmic event, a mandate, or an image on a toasted cheese sandwich. When God came to man- when BE came- BE became flesh. The God of the world in a body like yours and mine.

Why does it matter? Because you can touch flesh. You can identify with flesh. You can wrap your arms around flesh and feel its heartbeat. You can hear the voice of flesh and look into its eyes. And if you're searching for a sacrifice for the sins of all mankind, you can pierce flesh and it will bleed. You can nail flesh to a cross."

- Louie Giglio (I am not but I know I AM)

I can't wait for Spring...

This back yard is Sheryl Crow's. I cannot wait for the green grass and the flowers to grow.

Friday, March 11, 2011

The best feeling...

Is when I sign in here thinking ah, I will just check my blog real quick and see if anyone has stopped by it. (expecting no one has) And seeing I have two new comments. Thank you God for sharing my blog with others to inspire.

In an effort to keep people informed...

I was told I needed to keep my blog updated more because when people get into it... I tend to de-rail and lose my intense focus on journaling and documenting what's happening. I suppose here I go, back to blogging... I didn't know anyone really paid any attention!

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Farewell!

With the opportunity to go to Washington DC for a class trip, I debated the opportunity. At first it didn't seem like too big of a deal since my sister has moved down there and I have gotten to see many of the tourist attractions. However, when I got the opportunity to go meet the woman I have been talking to about a potential Senior Field placement... I jumped at the opportunity! I am so stoked to see what God has in store for me. And also very excited to have this opportunity to hang out with some incredible people from the Social Work division.

Farewell, I will post photos as I am able. For now, I am off to Washington DC for a class trip...

"Today our way of living and our schools are much different. It has been many years since I beat eggs with a fork, or cleaned a kerosene lamp; many things have made living and learning easier. But the real things haven't changed; they can never change… Great improvements in living have been made because every American has been free to pursue his happiness, and so as long as Americans are free they will continue to make our country even more wonderful." (Laura Ingalls Wilder, letter)

Psalm 24


Of David. A psalm.

The earth is the LORD’s, and everything in it,

the world, and all who live in it;

for he founded it on the seas

and established it on the waters.

Who may ascend the mountain of the LORD?

Who may stand in his holy place?

The one who has clean hands and a pure heart,

who does not trust in an idol

or swear by a false god.[a]

They will receive blessing from the LORD

and vindication from God their Savior.

Such is the generation of those who seek him,
who seek your face, God of Jacob.[b][c]

Lift up your heads, you gates;

be lifted up, you ancient doors,

that the King of glory may come in.

Who is this King of glory?

The LORD strong and mighty,

the LORD mighty in battle.

Lift up your heads, you gates;

lift them up, you ancient doors,

that the King of glory may come in.

Who is he, this King of glory?

The LORD Almighty—

he is the King of glory.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

The loneliest whale in the world

So I was browsing the blogosphere today and I came across this post.

I thought, how incredibly awful. I have felt very lonely at times and really alone with many people around me. At least they could hear me! Imagine thinking you're communicating with people but they really have no idea that you're even speaking!

I couldn't imagine... oh, the despair.

Deeper

I have been praying to go deeper with God.

I wanted to find my relationship with God to be more intimate. I wanted to know Him more. I just didn't know how this could become a reality. Slowly I have found that as I continue to become relationally involved with others with the same goals I am learning the true meaning of iron sharpens iron. I have learned more, been challenged more, and really am falling in love with God all over again.

Isn't it so cool that we have a God that loves us so much He's jealous for us. He wants to spend more time with us and never tires of us. I want to serve Him so I can know true love, joy, and peace in a fuller way.

I am so excited to see where God takes me!

"I know every answer to every problem in the world. If men would only ask me, I would give them the answers" - God (From Bill Johnson in dreaming with God)

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Brought me back

Can I just say how incredible God is? He has brought me back to His heart and something else I am excited about, He brought me back to running... So very incredible. It's awesome and I feel so blessed. I love it.

Friday, February 25, 2011

No excuses not to love...

This week I met ten incredible, talented young women who spoke very little English. I sat with them and we laughed and cried together... We shared life and practically lived together. I was nervous at first, would I be able to love them, would they accept me? And by the end of the time we had together: each of us had given away a piece of our hearts and the girls truly transformed me and my thoughts. They were all so beautiful and such incredible girls. I was so amazed at how they opened up and how they loved... Ohhh how they loved each of us counselors and how they told us their stories.

I realized that no matter where you are, whether you're in Africa, or you're in Rochester, NY there are young girls and young teens that need to know that they matter and that they are important. And I am so proud of the girls that I met and who they have rose to be.

I realized that by the end of the week, laughter and hugs know no language...

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Refuse to do nothing.

The last week or so I have really been struggling with a lot of random things... And as I struggled and the more I struggled... The more I have tried to withdraw. I will find myself not wanting to leave my room for any circumstance.

Last night I went to a bible study and they showed the movie To Save A Life... We didn't get to stay until the end... However, it reminded me why I was so passionate about not letting myself just do nothing with an excuse of being busy or preoccupied.

Then I got in the car and we listened to K-Love, a Christian Radio station and I heard about it again. How we can not do everything but we can refuse to do nothing. I thought to myself, God, what are you trying to say? I know I am failing... I feel distant... But I don't know what to do..

And I realized that even though I don't know what to do... Doing nothing at all is not going to be better than doing at least a little something. Whatever that may mean.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

With Valentines Day coming up....

We had a video played at church today with all of these Valentines and then I heard this song on Pandora today and it made me smile. Just a nice little valentine sentiment.

He packed his bags when he was just 18


To see a world he thought he'd never seen

But he knew when he met her

That she was the girl

He'd been waiting for



And each night they spent talking on the front porch swing

And like it came straight out of a movie scene

But one night she stepped out as the sun began to set

When she got to the porch she found a letter that read



You're the only girl I'll ever love

And I'd do anything not to give you up

If I could only stop the world

When you're standing by my side

See I'm having the time of my life

Yes, I'm having the time of my life



The months went by it was their wedding day

A church on a hill wedding bells rang away

She looked like a princess

All dressed up in pearls

It was her proudest day



And he stood all alone in a darkened church hallway

He got down on his knees and he started to pray

He thanked the Lord for his family and the perfect bride

But he couldn't hold back what he was feelin' inside

And he said



She's the only girl I'll ever love

And I'd do anything not to give her up

If I could only stop the world

When she's standing by my side

See, I'm having the time of my life

Yes, I'm having the time of my life



Forty years went by and she lived most of God's plan

She stood alone in an attic, wedding dress in her hand

And she held an old letter written so long ago

But she'd never forget it

No matter how old



And as she turned to put the dress away

And pack up the years

He was standing in the doorway

With his eyes full of tears

And he held her



'Cause you're the only girl I'll ever love

And I'd do anything not to give you up

If I could only stop the world

When you're standing by my side

See I'm having the time of my life

Yes, I'm having the time of my life



Friday, February 4, 2011

So blessed.

Twenty years old... Wow.

That's what keeps coming to my mind anyways. I think I am twenty: wow! Crazy. I don't know how to deal with it. And it has only been five minutes of this particular day.

I think about what my life has had to offer: I have accomplished a lot... I have a lot left to accomplish. When I reflect on my life... I can think of one thing: I am blessed. SO blessed.

My greatest fear this birthday has been the unknown. I don't have a feeling of certainty. I feel like I am leaving my teen years and I am scared of all of the future things. What could come to be what may not... Opportunities I may miss.

I was also scared that no one would remember. After I deactivated my facebook... I thought no one will know it's my birthday. This birthday has seemed particularly crippling and to be totally honest has mustered up many tears. So I thought if I don't celebrate... It could be a disaster!

Tonight, well, last night... I was so overwhelmed. A few friends surprised me with a party. I didn't even think I would have anyone notice my existance much less throw a party. And I was totally shocked. They passed around a canvas at the party and everyone drew on it... Creating a drawing just for me! It was incredible. I also got beautiful flowers and a clock and necklace... I am so honored that God has blessed me with these friends.

This afternoon I found myself crying out to God as I felt so confused... I sat crying at my desk listening to countless worship songs surrounded by His love. I just felt like I didn't understand what He was doing. I conciously know that He is more than enough for me. However, deep in my heart for some silly reason this afternoon: I doubted that. I prayed and prayed that He would show me His love and passion and show me His love. Tonight, I saw that as the community came around me. I was blown away by the kindness of my friends.

Tonight, I continue to point up though. As my life continues to drive on, I know that the only reason I have gotten my chance at life is because I have a God that's totally in love with me. A God that has paved the way for me. I am so blessed. I point up tonight because a few years back I didn't dream of living. I thought my life truly was going to get cut short... I thought that was it... Maybe I wouldn't even get the chance to finish high school now I am looking into the face of graduating college in a few more semesters...

I am coming to realize tonight, that I cannot fall into the worry of growing old... I can't worry about those things. However, I must embrace these days, the days of growth, of life... Because when I die, I will not be able to live any more. However, I don't know when that day will come and an accumulation of days on a calandar don't necessarily mean that life is over it just means I have spent a little more time on earth than others and less time on earth than some. I must embrace this beautiful gift God has given me... And that's truly what my life has been. A gift. A beautiful, and incredible gift.

Tonight I give thanks for the tangible things in life:
- My family
- My friends
- The ability to go to college
- The opportunities I have been able to embrace

And the not so tangible things:

- My freedom to express religion
- The ability to walk
- The God that loves me so much.

Tonight I say thanks God, for being my creator. I hope this is another year I am able to look up. And I say thank you for being a friend. :]

Embrace life. Do not fear death.

Now off to bed at exactly: 12:20. Cool!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

The only good thing...

My birthday is quickly approaching. It's less than twenty-four hours away.

And I wanted to share something super cool that I learned a few nights ago. While I was reading, I found out that I share a birthday with this man:
Now you might look at this photo and go: I am sorry, who? That looks like an old photo of my great uncle- Bob! Sorry, it's not! It's actually Dietrich Bonhoeffer. How cool is that? This man is someone that I have really found totally influential and incredible. He took the level of Christianity and being a martyr to a real level. I was so blown away to see he and I shared a birthday. You can read more about him here. I don't usually support Wikipedia but I thought it would give a ncie summary of his life. He's an incredible writer and one of his well known works is: The Cost of Discipleship. You should definately check him out.

After reading that I decided that Februrary 4th is a pretty great day to be born.

I share my birthday with other incredible people such as: Rosa Parks (known for not moving to the back of the bus during a period of segregation) , Clyde W. Tombaugh (discovered Pluto as a planet. don't worry Clyde, Pluto will always be a planet in my book), Josiah Quincy (president of Harvard), Bug Hall (Alfalfa in Little Rascals remake), Betty Friedan (women's rights activist), Ray Evans (remember when I posted here with the song Que Sera Sera? Well, Ray Evans wrote that song! So cool.).

Those are just a few of the incredible and influential people that share a birthday with me... I have some pretty big shoes to fill!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Things were going so well...

Today I got this annoying little notification on my e-mail account that basically told me my inbox was too full.

So I pressed the little advancement thing to see the end of my account. Upon doing this I began a marathon of deleting old e-mails... When I was doing this I saw the many schedules I had received. My weekly training logs. I thought wow. I was living the dream! At the beginning of this year I was doing everything I had ever wanted to. I was on the Cross Country team at school, I was doing really well in my classes, and I was running just about every day. I had connected with some really awesome people...

What could possibly get me hung up right? Wrong!

The beginning of this year was the hardest yet... I had a horrible beginning to the semester despite the fact that it shouldn't have been trouble at all. I was focusing on myself and it caused a lot of inner turmoil. I just wanted to rely on myself... Hmm... Well, despite everything being "perfect" it didn't end with a perfect picture time dropped ending. However, it has taught me more, and above that: I really believe that it gave me a friendship that wouldn't have happened otherwise. God is so cool like that.

So Praise God for the not-so picture perfect ending.

Saturday, January 29, 2011

too true.

re-posted from: http://start-with-c.tumblr.com/

“We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit.” - Aristotle

Reflection

Today I woke up... It was a typical day, a power struggle between me and my many alarms...

I ran a brush through my hair and decided not to shower. I gathered my notebook and pen and coat and scarf... I was off to class. My first class of the day on HIV, Drugs, and the Family.

I returned to the silence of my room an hour later, tired, exhausted even, and sore. I crawled into bed. I found comfort within the sheets of my bed. Ah yes, something so inviting about the warmth of my blankets. I slipped into sleep.

*knock knock knock* My head flew off the pillow: I said come in, I had given in to my most recent power struggle with my body and had fallen asleep. *phew!* it's a girl on the floor coming to visit for an outfit consultation. Something I can handle.

An hour later, I am bundling up to face the bite of the crisp cool air and dodge the microscopic masterpieces of snow. I cross campus as I am going to chapel. There I acquire a heart of worship and reflect...

After chapel comes a meeting and then class until three o'clock.

My day is complete at three. I ponder what to do: I get back to my room and type up an assignment and review my day. I make some important phone calls. I sigh. I made it through the day.

This has been my reflection most days recently... I have been wiped out... Tired if you will. Weaker than normal but still able to push through. Each day is a small victory. It's not so much to take me out, but just enough. Bed comes early each night... However, it has reminded me of the victory I have within my Savior.

Hm... Just a reflection.