Monday, December 15, 2008
It's finally the end of semester (I'm going home tomorrow for break) and I'm more than ready for this time away. I'm amazed at all God has done this semester, not only in me but with my family. We have always been a tight knit group but never as much as we are now. We've been in a valley but God is walking us through.
Baby E.J. will be arriving SOON :) We are all preparing for the newness of having a baby around again. He's won our hearts over and he isn't even here yet. I'm so excited to be an aunt and to help guide Ethan in the ways of the world. He is loved so much already and pray that he will be a healthy happy boy.
I am procrastinating way too much on studying for my finals. this was a quick update but i'll try my hardest to stay up with this.
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
I just returned from my much needed fall break. I spent the four days at home (surprise surprise, I know). But those of you who know me, know that I just can't get enough of being home with my family. This break was a much needed get away from the Olivet bubble. Time to relax and hang out with my family.
I got to enjoy a beautiful wedding on Saturday. The joining of two souls. Spent that evening dancing and laughing and enjoying being with my mom and some of our friends. It was a nice cool evening, perfect for the outdoor party.
I got to watch my brother play football (twice during my visit home). I'm really impressed with the gifts and talents my brother has received and grateful to see that he hasn't become cocky or let others influence his decisions. He is one smart cookie and for that I am ever proud of.
I got to eat lunch with my mother, pamela and megan on Monday and Tuesday. On Monday, before my doctors visit, I met my sister and mother at the hospital and I got to see my nephew for the first time (through an ultrasound obviously). I heard his heartbeat and at one point he even looked at us and smiled (i have this picture on my room door). Listening to E.J.'s (short for Ethan Nicholas Jeske) heartbeat was nothing short of listening to a miracle. This little boy who has captured all our hearts already. I have many dreams and hopes for E.J, as his aunt I want to be a listening ear for him when he needs someone other than his parents. I want to be that one that teaches him sports and takes him to his first Cubs game. I'm already wrapped around this little man's fingers and he's already won me over. :)
My doctors visit was one I've been waiting for since my junior year of high school. My doctor finally said he was pleased with my TSH levels and could confidently say I only need to be tested once a year now and that we don't have to play with my medicine dosage any longer. Praise the Lord. :)
I also made the decision to be baptized. Many of my friends have and I've never really though about it. I knew I was a Christ-Follower even if I hadn't been baptized and I knew that he loved me all the same. But the significance of being baptized is something bigger, a deeper commitment to the one who created me and the one loves me unconditionally. I do believe this service will be on November 16th. When I returned back to school my mom texted me and said that my brother has made the decision to be baptized on the same day. Many of you know the closeness I feel with my brother and how my heart prays that he learns the ways of following God, long before I did. I pray that he realizes that being a Christ Follower is one of the coolest things you can do, especially when others tell him differently. He has a good head on his shoulder and I'm mighty proud of the man he is today. I'm very excited to get to share in this day/occasion with him.
My break from Olivet was much needed and bit more than I bargained for. I shared in many laughs with my family and realized even more how much I miss them when I'm at school. They have been a great deal of support to me, even when times weren't always easy. I truly am blessed and I look around at all the changing thats going on with the fall season and I think of tha changes going on in me and with my family. Through the changes in nature and the changes with me, I see God, everywhere I look that are hints of His character, His grace, and His love.
'Lord I'm amazed by you
Lord I'm amazed by you
Lord I'm amazed by you
How you love me"
Tuesday, September 30, 2008
Trying to hide the pain.
I'm going to the place where love
And feeling good don't ever cost a thing.
And the pain you feel's a different kind of pain.
Well I'm going home,
Back to the place where I belong,
And where your love has always been enough for me.
I'm not running from.
No, I think you got me all wrong.
I don't regret this life I chose for me.
But these places and these faces are getting old,
So I'm going home.
Well I'm going home."
Never in my life have I been as homesick as I have been feeling this semester. I don't know why I am feeling this or what could be causing it, but I long for Indiana. Many days I find my mind so wrapped up in when I next get to visit home that I can't pay attention to what my professors are saying.
I never thought I would miss Alexandria or Indiana, but I do. A lot of issues have hit my family and I wish I could be there with them to help get through these times.
I love Olivet and I love Illinois, but I feel like such a stranger sometimes on this campus. Nothing seems to be measuring up to home.
I know God will see me through, because I know there was a reason he pulled me here. At this time I can't shake the feeling of wanting to be back home.
.....I'm going to try and keep up with this again
Monday, August 25, 2008
This summer has been one of many changes, many lessons learned, meeting of many new people.
The month of May was by far one of the best. I spend time with some of the most amazing friends and deepened friendships with some that I just met. I spent time with great people and learned a lot about trust. It was the bright beginning to a good summer.
The month of June was full or heartache, that turned into a blessing, and a lot of time at home in Indiana. I went through a break-up that I had no idea was coming. I learned about trusting my true feelings and being afraid of how I feel. I no longer am afraid of that. I spent a lot of time at home with my family and spent a week in Maytown, KY which turned out to be the best week of my life. I learned so much from God the time I spent there. Learned a lot about trusting God with my life, getting out of my comfort zone, and my passion for the homeless and poor deepened. I needed the spiritual refreshment that I found that week. I found God again, in the midst of a crazy month. I realized that the break-up I went through was for the best and I couldn't see myself anywhere else than where I am right now.
The month of July was by far one of the best. I started attending a new church (Peoples Church) and I have found a group of friends that sometimes I wonder how I ever survived without them. They welcomed me and accepted me and I feel like I've known them for years. It was a trust lesson with letting new people in but I haven't regretted it one bit. I learned a lot about God and his bigger plan for my life. I spent 4th of July with my family and had the most amazing conversation with my father, he said words I had only longed to hear from him my whole life.
The month of August has been, crazy, fast and a lot about trusting God and not losing faith. A lot of things with financial aid and school fell through and left looking like I wouldn't be returning to Olivet. I hit rock bottom and almost gave up all hope. With the support and prayers of my friends and family...I'm finally seeing light at the end of the tunnel. I have been working a lot with school starting back up and freshman coming. It has kept me busy but very tired. :) I found a new love for my job and each new day find something new and exciting about it.
I learned a lot about myself this summer. Who I am, who God wants me to be, and the future plans he has for me. When times got rocky and rough God always pulled through. I'm anxious to see what he has in store for me this coming year. Each new day God blesses me in new and exciting ways.
Monday, August 4, 2008
and no one else can share its joy
I never really knew what it felt like to be bitter until just the other day. It was a sudden attack of the Devil that has left me wrestling with this feeling that shouldn't be here. I'm not sure why I'm bitter, because I haven't been before. But something the other day just struck me.
Maybe it's all the empty promises. Maybe it was the way I led astray with no indications. Maybe it was the fact I was blinded by something that seemed all too perfect to be true. Maybe it was because for once in my life I did everything I told myself I wouldn't do and in return I was the one that wasn't trusted. I don't want to be bitter, because honestly it's not a pleasant feeling.
I don't want to be angry. I don't want to have to force myself to seem civilized. In Sunday School we were talking about how we know the difference between the voice of God and the voice of the Devil and how sometimes we just have to say 'Enough is Enough". I'm to the at point.
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH!
I don't like the way bitterness feels. It pulls me away from God. I'm giving into the devil's voice. Cathy was right, the devil's voice is nagging and annoying. I'm tired of hearing it. I'm done. I pray the bitterness is taken away.
" No matter what it takes I will offer,
Everything I am I give to you
Even unto death I will follow,
No matter what the price I will give to you now"
Friday, July 18, 2008
Innocent Days by: Jonny Diaz
Why do I question what’s taking place
Whatever happened to innocent days
Days when I gladly walked by Your side
After the guilt but way before my pride
Why do I hide in places so small
Crowded with questions, no room at all
For all the big things You once had planned
My faith disappeared when I let go Your hand
Innocent faith/ innocent way/ an innocent heart/ filled with innocent praise
Unfailing love/ undeserved grace/
Please take me back to innocent days
Is Your forgiveness so deep and wide
That it would place me back at Your side
Why should You want me, why should You care
I don’t understand this love that You share
Lord, free my heart to feel, to touch, to see, to taste
Cover me with the robe, the garment of innocent praise
Do you remember those days when life was easy?? I'm so taken back by little children. I love watching my cousin Simon. This kid is so full of adventure and wonder. Anything he wants he can imagine it to be there. When it comes to trust he doesn't think twice about it. Simon knows that when he crosses the street he has to hold someones hand, so without thinking twice he grabs someones hand. He doesn't think about the fact that there could still be cars coming, he knows that once he grabs someones hand they are looking out for him. Why does he know this? Because he trusts them. When Simon is scared he runs to someone for comfort, knowing that they will protect him. Why does he run to them for protection? Because he trusts them.
I wish I was more like Simon. I wish that I could always run to God and not think twice. I wish that trusting God was easier than it is. Why do I second guess myself sometimes? I have no idea. I have never turned away from God, I just know how easy it is to want to pull the reigns back every now and then.
I want to go back to those days when I didn't second guess things. The days where I knew God always had the best plan for me. The days where my mind was full of wonder and adventure. I want to be more like Simon. Have the faith of a child.
"Please take me back to innocent days"
Thursday, July 17, 2008
It amazes me that today in America relationships don't seem to mean anything to anyone anymore. Or at least after a relationship ends it's like they never even existed. How can that be? How can talk about a promising future and then move on so quickly? How can someone pretend that what they had with someone never existed? How can someone think that their flirting manners wouldn't be hurtful when they are slapped into someone's face? Why of all places would someone choose a church to break someone's heart all over again, even if they didn't know they were breaking it?
Heart break really is worse than it sounds. It's a one of those you can't breathe, you chest feels like someone is stabbing you type feelings. It's not very pleasant, but none the less you get over it. Obviously some easier than others. But as I sat last night with the feeling of heart break (again), I let God speak to me. Easy to do since I was in church, but he spoke to me in the ways of stories, probably because that's what the lesson was about. But the Professor in the video made a good point. He said we all suffer from Myopia (which in english in near-sightedness), meaning we very easily see our personally stories up close, but we over look God's bigger story. We can't truly be a part of God's bigger story unless we use our stories to be a stepping stone for others. We have to quit trying to do things our way and give into God's bigger plan.
So last night when I wanted to be sad and crushed I didn't let myself get that way, I looked to God. I didn't want to be sad, because it gets me nowhere. I didn't want to sit and dwell on the hurt, because it gets me nowhere. I wanted to think about God and not only my story, but his bigger story for me. My story was not written by me nor is it really about me. It was written by God with the help of all those (good and bad) who have come into my life over the years.
I have a dream on changing the world, one person at a time. My story can help do that. My broken heart can help others in the future. My experiences could possibly save someone from going through what I have been through. I didn't let this broken heart moment get me down. God picked me up fast and put my smile back on my face. No person in this world can bring me down enough that God can't save me. And that adds another chapter to my story and a page closer to God's bigger plan for me.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
terminal illness and had been given three months to live.
So as she was getting her things 'in order,' she
contacted her Pastor and had him come to her house to
discuss certain aspects of her final wishes.
She told him which songs she wanted sung at the service,
what scriptures she would like read, and what outfit she
wanted to be buried in.
Everything was in order and the Pastor was preparing to
leave when the young woman suddenly remembered something
very important to her.
'There's one more thing,' she said excitedly.
'What's that?' came the Pastor's reply.
'This is very important,' the young woman
continued. 'I want to be buried with a fork in my right
The Pastor stood looking at the young woman, not knowing
quite what to say.
That surprises you, doesn't it?' the young woman
'Well, to be honest, I'm puzzled by the
request,' said the Pastor.
The young woman explained. 'My grandmother once told
me this story, and from that time on I have always tried to
pass along its message to those I love and those who are in
need of encouragement. In all my years of attending socials
and dinners, I always remember that when the dishes of the
main course were being cleared, someone would inevitably
lean over and say, 'Keep your fork.' It was my
favorite part because I knew that something better was
coming...like velvety chocolate cake or deep-dish apple
pie. Something wonderful, and with substance!'
So, I just want people to see me there in that casket
with a fork in my hand and I want them to wonder
'What's with the fork?' Then I want you to tell
them: 'Keep your fork ..the best is yet to come.'
The Pastor's eyes welled up with tears
of joy as he hugged the young woman good-bye. He knew
this would be one of the last times he would see her before
her death. But he also knew that the young woman had a
better grasp of heaven than he did. She had a better grasp
of what heaven would be like than many people twice her
age, with twice as much experience and knowledge. She KNEW
that something better was coming.
At the funeral people were walking by the young
woman's casket and they saw the cloak she was wearing
and the fork placed in her right hand. Over and over, the
Pastor heard the question, 'What's with the
fork?' And over and over he smiled.
During his message, the Pastor told the people of
the conversation he had with the young woman shortly
before she died. He also told them about the fork and about
what it symbolized to her. He told the people how he could
not stop thinking about the fork and told them that they
probably would not be able to stop thinking about it
He was right. So the next time you reach down for your
fork let it remind you, ever so gently, that the best is
yet to come. Friends are a very rare jewel , indeed. They
make you smile and encourage you to succeed Cherish the
time you have, and the memories you share ... being friends
with someone is not an opportunity but a sweet
I got this in an e-mail from my mother today and I just loved it. To think life really is going to get better than it is right now.
I was having a conversation with a friend last night and I don't really remember what sparked the conversation, but I made the statement "Maybe I'll just die young and not have to worry about it." (Now that I type it I think we were talking about children). When I read this I thought. What if I do die young? Will I be sad because I didn't get to experience a long life? Will I be upset because all my friends will be around for many more years? Will I be upset because I didn't know what kind of adventures tomorrow would bring?
No, I wouldn't be, because Heaven is yet to come. And let's face it, nothing could out beat Heaven. I'm not afraid to die, honestly I look forward to it. If it happens when I'm young then so be it.
I love having conversations with my grandfather, he's full of insight and humor. He had a stroke almost 7 years ago which after that has sent his health in a downward spiral. Up until 7years ago, my grandfather was the healthiest man I know. Never had a single problem, always healthy and in very good shape. Now it just seems like everything has gone wrong with him. He told me one time "Every morning I wake up I say, If I'm not going to be healthy then God please take me. I'm not happy hear anymore." When I hear him say this I'm usually sad because I don't want to think about losing my grandfather but then he always says, "I want to leave because Heaven is so promising. I won't hurt anymore, I won't be sick anymore, no more doctors, no more medication, no more tests. Just happiness, love and God."
I love his outlook. Earth is such a temporary residence because our citizenship is somewhere else. It's in a place where the best is to come. If I was to die today, I think being buried with a fork would be cool, think of the symbolism. Our best life and days are yet to come.
"I want to fly
into the sky
turn my back on this old world
and leave it all behind
this place is not my home
has nothing for me
only leaves me with emptiness
and tears in my eyes"
Monday, July 14, 2008
by: Brandon Heath
What if you and I went for a walk out in the rain
And you turned to me and you said you'd like to share
Just a little of your pain
Well my brother I thought you'd never say
I've been waiting forever for this day
What if you were to call me up and ask
For a minute of my time
And you cried and said you were different from the rest
Like it was some kind of crime
Well my sister I hoped that you might come
And I promise that you are not the only one
Look me in the eye and tell me honestly
What ever lies behind your broken heart
Is too complex for me
Come and talk to me if for only for a while
I am reaching for you
What if you were to tell me you were through
With the way that you live
Cause you take so much from an empty world outside
You've got nothing left to give
Well my brother I've felt the same way too
But someone changed me and He's got his eye on you
What if you remembered who you were
Before people broke you down
And you realized you were someones little girl
And he loves when you're around
We'll my sister, your dad has seen you hurt
And He's waiting for you with open arms
Nothing hurts Him more than seeing you in pain
Just to see you come so close to Him
And turn and walk away
Hide yourself in Him, He will make you brand new
He is reaching out for you
Your God is reaching out for you
He's reaching out for you
In church yesterday the man preaching talked about how we were once condemned, sinners, and unclean. We often times get the holier than though attitude when new people arrive at church and yet we wonder why no one comes back. It's because the church doesn't embrace them. We were once in their shoes. Strangers to the grace, love, and forgiveness that God has for us.
The church is in a rut. Let me re-phase that....the churches are in a rut. I think if Jesus was to come back today he would be very disappointed. He called for one church and one body, we don't have that. We have denominations who at times find it so hard to work with each other. We all worship the same man. Things won't change until one day a Methodist pastor could say, Why don't we try things a Baptist way. No denomination is better than the other. We look at our success based on the money and possessions we have, not the lives we touch and impact, not the lost souls that we bring to Christ.
I look at people from my past and I see countless possibilities, if they would only know what it's like to be free. I pray that my actions leave some kind of mark on them. I want to reach out to them. I want to embrace them. I was them once. How can the church grow if we only reach inside the church? We should be uncomfortable in our walk with Christ. It shouldn't be easy. It should be worth it. I don't like being dry and comfortable. I want to impact the world, one person at a time.
I'm reaching out to the hurt and those in pain. Why? Because I was them once. I want to reach out to the broken-hearted, the mentally and emotionally abused. Why? Because I was them once. I want to reach out to the lost. Why? Because I was them once.
God rescued me in one of my weakest moments, he brought me back from a hurting and troubling lifestyle. He reached out for me. I am the hands and the feet of God, I want to reach out.
" But if we are the Body
Why aren't His arms reaching
Why aren't His hands healing
Why aren't His words teaching
And if we are the Body
Why aren't His feet going
Why is His love not showing them there is a way
There is a way "
WHY? WHY? Why aren't our feet moving? Why aren't we showing them there is a better way out there? All they want is a new light and a new life. We have found that new light and new life. Why aren't we coming together to better the kingdom of God? Why not start today.
One random act of kindness can go a long way. Your smile (even on a bad day) could give someone hope. A simple hello could make someone feel like they have a purpose. Taking the time to talk to someone, could save them from making a big mistake. We can reach out.
Sunday, July 6, 2008
I miss Maytown so much (I believe that goes without saying). It's amazing how one week in a little boondock town can change your life and your hear so much. I miss the people there, not only the ones who worked/interned for Crossroads but for those who live in Maytown. I miss the kids and the energy they. I miss the Shepherds and their hospitality and how friendly they were. I miss how cool the interns were (even though I'm sure they are still cool). I miss the Georgians and surprisingly I miss their accents too. I miss hearing Jake say "Git -r-done" all day long (even though we know how much I hated it). I miss how simple life was for a week. The place we stayed was nothing fancy. We had 4 showers but way more than 4 girls. I miss working as a team to cook meals for everyone. I miss pick up games of ultimate frisbee and thinking that I was better than Jody and Chris. I miss going to bed at 1am to get up at 6:30am. I miss knowing that there was only one purpose for the day ahead....it was to serve God by helping others. It's hard to forget that here at Olivet when everyone around me isn't on the same page.
I just returned from a 4 day camping trip with my family. My mother, father, brother, grandma, grandpa, aunt janet, uncle bruce, aaron, braydon, camron, simon, aunt joni, uncle chip and brittany. It was a blast. I left Olivet on Thursday with Luke Mingus and drove him to Marion to catch a ride with his brother and then ventured back to Mississiniwa to meet up with my family. Thursday night by cousin Camron (who will soon be 6) asked me to sleep in the tent with him and the other boys (my cousins...don't anyone get to frantic..ha). I of course said yes....that is what camping is all about and to tell you the truth I had some great sleep the whole time. Friday was the 4th of July and we celebrated our freedom. My favorite freedom is the freedom I have to serve God. What a privilege we have. We went to watch fireworks that night and I don't think you really ever get too old for them....they are such fun. Saturday we went to the beach and I fell asleep and spent roughly 3 hours in the sun. Needless to say I was sick the rest of the day and I now look like a tomato. :) That night we had a pitch in dinner for the whole family and as we all sat gathered round so that my uncle could pray I looked at everyone and realized how truly blessed I am. I really have it good.
At the age of 20 I still have all 4 grandparents still alive. I have a mother who is the closest thing to my best friend that I have had in years. I have a dad who use to be my worst enemy who I know use as the model for my future husband. I have cousins who no matter how old they get...I will always be a role model for them, and knowing that makes me want to do everything correctly, respectfully and mostly for God. I have an uncle and aunt who are such Godly influences that it's unbelievable and another aunt and uncle who are my #1 fans. God has blessed me so much through my family. They drive me nuts...push my buttons...make me mad...irritate me.....but none the less they know how to make me smile....they warm my heart...know me better than I know myself most of the time....and they love me unconditionally.
This morning I fixed my breakfast plate with my moms homemade chocolate chip pancakes with of course peanut butter and syrup on top and made my way into my grandparents camper to eat breakfast with grandma. It was so much fun to sit and talk to her. I think my grandmother is a saint. My grandpa had a stroke almost 6years ago and hasn't been right health wise since then. He is stubborn and my grandmother puts up with it. She shows genuine true love. Many times I know she wants to give up and make him do it on his own....but she doesn't because she took a vow to stand by his side til death do them part. She is such an inspiration for the woman I want to be someday. Between her and my mother.....I hope to be half as awesome as they are.
I left after lunch and came back to Olivet and I'm ready to leave here again. I look forward to a break from here and never look forward to coming back. I don't know what it is about this place..but most days I don't feel like I'm home. I love my friends here. I love my co-workers. I love the area. I just don't understand. I want to feel something more.
"there's not much I can do
to repay all you've done
so I give my hands to use
this is my desire
this is my return
this is my desire
to be used by you"
Friday, June 27, 2008
Life at Olivet is boring. Of course. I'm still waiting to meet with Dr. J, just to see what he has to say about everything. I'm keeping positive and loving every second of my life :) I got to go walking with Roxanne again yesterday and it's so nice to have the next step of that friendship going. She's an awesome girl who is dealing with a lot of the same issues I am. We get to talk about life and our past (which are quite similar). She's such a positive up-beat person who is always smiling and laughing :) I just love that about her.
I finally got to watch Hitch last night. Ha. All day I had wanted to watch it and sadly I don't own it so I tried downloading it and it wouldn't load. Thankfully my friend had it and we watched it. I'm extremely exhausted though because I was up so late. Ha
I'm heading for home today for the weekend :) I'm excited for that. The church service on Sunday is done by us. :) I'm so looking forward to that and getting to hang out with my mom on saturday morning :) She's super cool.
When I have my devotional book with me I will blog on my devotion from last night, it was so great. It talked about how we long to be satisfied but we never will truly be satisfied until we get to Heaven. Everything I needed to read.
Well this is all for now. Going to work on my Sunday School lesson and what I will be saying on Sunday.
Wednesday, June 25, 2008
2My purpose is that they may be encouraged in heart and united in love, so that they may have the full riches of complete understanding, in order that they may know the mystery of God, namely, Christ, 3in whom are hidden all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge. 4I tell you this so that no one may deceive you by fine-sounding arguments. 5For though I am absent from you in body, I am present with you in spirit and delight to see how orderly you are and how firm your faith in Christ is.6So then, just as you received Christ Jesus as Lord, continue to live in him, 7rooted and built up in him, strengthened in the faith as you were taught, and overflowing with thankfulness."
Jody gave this devotion in the morning and he talked about what is means to be rooted. (Obviously). He gave the illustration of a tree. Say you have a baby oak tree that has just been planted, someone my size could come and completely pull it out, sometimes taking it's roots and all. After years of growing and nourishing the tree becomes a HUGE tree that even the largest semi can not budge. That tree didn't grow on it's own, it needed other trees around it and needed food and sunlight. That's how our relationship with Christ should be. We should be so rooted in faith that when small obstacles arise they can't move us and when BIG obstacles come our way our roots don't budge. We can't grow in our walk alone, we need other Christians to walk beside us and we need to feed ourselves with God's word.
We went to a water park with the kids from the Maytown camp. I'm not a big fan of water parks but the kids had a blast and seeing the looks on their faces was worth the cold weather and cold water. After the water park the kids were taken back to Maytown and the interns and youth groups went to Daniel Boone National Park to have a cook out. We fellowshipped with each other, ate some food, played some frisbee, celebrated a birthday and worthship. During worship we got broken into our small groups (not our work groups but a different small group). We were then given 8 pictures (they were amazing photography by the way) and we were told to pick one the represented something in our life. Something we are dwelling on. I wanted to choose all of them, because they all served some purpose in my life. But I settled on the one with an old rusty bike with no wheels on it. This is how my life felt. I've taken the wrong way so many times because I get distracted by something that looks appealing to the eye. I search for God and his direction and get lost, because I see God in all the wrong things, people, and places. But I'm still standing and I just need my master to do a little work in me and hopefully be back on my way. I've just been lost for God, but my life has never been so happy and I'm not sure why it is, but it is.
This night Scott and I got to walk away from the group and talk about all that is going during the trip. We both kind of looked at each other and said "I don't know why I am here." We didn't feel like the youth was getting anything from it and it was almost discouraging. But we keep our heads high and continued on with our work, only to be taken back by the work of God during the rest of the week.
"No guilt in life, no fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life's first cry to final breath
Jesus command my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can even pluck me from His hand
'Til He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I'll stand."
Tuesday, June 24, 2008
This is why I feel so spiritually dry at Olivet. I went on a the missions trip last week and felt/sensed God everywhere. Every movement, every word, every action, every breath, the moment I come back to Olivet it's drama, stress and relationships. I don't know where the spirit is on this campus most times. I'm not a fan of our chaplain (thought I don't know many people who are) he does nothing for spiritual growth here. Most of the time I get nothing from chapel because the people around me aren't into it. I just thirst for God and don't know where to turn to find Him. I used a past relationship as my growth with God and it left me dry and wanting more. I want to find God here but it's so hard.
On the plus side of things I ran into Dr.J today :) Seriously if you don't go to Olivet then you are for real missing out. He is like the greatest thing ever, he's like my adopted dad at school. I seriously wouldn't have made it through this year without him. We are meeting this week to chat about everything. I'm anxious to hear his thought about it all and the advice he will give.
Today I saw God in this older man down by the pond. On the way to Perry Farms there is a pond with a gazebo by it and I like to go down there to do my devotionals. There was an older man down there fishing for tadpoles when he started talking to a kid who was there with his cousins. He asked the kid how old he was and he said he was going to be a senior and that he eventually wanted to go to college to be an optometrist, but didn't know if he would ever get there. The man just told him be what you want to be and don't let anyone tell you differently, don't let them tell you no or get in your way. It was so nice to chat with this man about life and what I want to do when I graduate (he told me to find him when I graduate so I could meet his son-in-law for a job). God comes in all the most unlikely places.
"It's all because of Jesus I'm alive
It's because the blood of Jesus Christ
it covers me and raised this dead mans life
It's all because of Jesus I'm alive."
"15He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. 16For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. 17He is before all things, and in him all things hold together. 18And he is the head of the body, the church; he is the beginning and the firstborn from among the dead, so that in everything he might have the supremacy. 19For God was pleased to have all his fullness dwell in him, 20and through him to reconcile to himself all things, whether things on earth or things in heaven, by making peace through his blood, shed on the cross. 21Once you were alienated from God and were enemies in your minds because of[a] your evil behavior. 22But now he has reconciled you by Christ's physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation"
When Rodney did our devotion for today he asked us what we thought of when we heard the word supreme. One boy from our youth group said, "Honestly, I think of pizza." Others gave out Sunday School answers: royalty,ruling, almighty, etc. But I got stuck on the answer of pizza. You may think I'm crazy but I think we can relate to God as a pizza. God is the ever-knowing almighty he is every layer of our layer. He is the crust which is our basic structure, he formed us into just the right shape and size. He is the sauce which connects who we are to our special gifts and talents he has given to us. Then comes the cheese and all the other toppings (it's a supreme pizza so choose anything you want). The toppings are our God given talents, provided only through God. He shapes us, holds us together and provides us all the right traits to serve Him. When you go to a pizza place and look at the menu they have you cheese pizza, pepperoni pizza, meat lovers, and so forth, but when you come to the Supreme pizza it's usually in BIGGER font to draw your attention to it. Isn't that how God is? We have all these other "gods" and idols who try to get in our way of the top God the ruler of all. God is everything good and wonderful in one person. Kind of like a supreme pizza, it's everything good tasting in one pizza. See I knew this would go a little better than when it started ;)
We spent our 2nd day at the Shepherds and today I met the kids (well Jack's grandchildren). Rachel, Courtney and Bryce, so cute kids who loved the attention they got from all of us. Talking to Jack and his children was very encouraging to hear them just so grateful for everything they had and everything we were doing for them.
My mind has been going crazy this whole week about where my place is in this world. I'm half way done with college and still have no idea where my future is going. I don't even have an idea of what I want to do with my degree once I graduate. I'm beginning to wonder if I ever will. My mind has constantly been praying that God will show me direction, give me guidance. I feel so dry here at Olivet. More on this topic will come from another day.
I'm starting to get to know people better, I've spent time talking with Chris and Jody a lot. Crazy guys who have a such a heart for God.
Your grace has found me just as I am
Empty handed but alive in your hands
Forever I am changed by your love
In the presence of your Majesty"
Monday, June 23, 2008
I went walking with my friend Roxanne this evening and without even talking to her about all of this before she brought up relationships and the exact thing I have been thinking about all day. I don't know how many of you have read the Twilight series, I have not but Roxanne has and we talked about the relationship Edward has with the girl in the story (I didn't catch her name). The relationship is so selfless. He doesn't want her to change and when he sees her starting to change he brings it to her attention. He wants her exactly the way she is. She is nervous about leaving her world to become a vampire, and Edward doesn't pressure her to do whatever he wants, he lets her be her own person and make her own decisions. They don't expect anything from each other except being there for one another. It's selfless and they are both not selfish.
Roxanne and I talked for almost 1.5 hours about this and about how reading a story like this leaves us thriving for a guy like that. I want a guy who will be my spiritual leader from day one and not just for a little while. A guy who will want me for me and if he sees me start changing he won't let me, he will be happy with the person I am. Someone who let's be make my own decision and advises me on the way and supports me with my dreams and hopes. A guy who is selfless and not selfish, who knows it takes a lot of work to make a relationship work and who will work to make it last. A guy who even if we live states a part will be genuine and sincere. A guy who is sensitive to our feelings and can handle our temper because he knows he's the only one who can calm it as well. A guy who will challenge me in my faith, make me deepen my beliefs, and will be interested in what God is doing in my life. Someone who will also be my friend and not forget about dating me and won't think too much about the future too fast. We talked about how we don't have to date someone from where we are, because distance makes the heart grow fonder and working for it would be all worth it.
We talked about how we are excited to meet the one we are suppose to marry and but learning to be patient. We aren't in any hurry we just want a guy who is genuine and sincere about being the guy God calls them to be and will fight to keep what they have.
Today I saw God in Roxanne. When we were out talking I just someone who had as much hope as I do. Hope for a future that is God centered and won't settle for anything less. It was so good to have her tonight.
The word today was Redeemed and our scripture was Colossians 1:9-14.
"9For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you and asking God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all spiritual wisdom and understanding. 10And we pray this in order that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and may please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, 11being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and joyfully 12giving thanks to the Father, who has qualified you[b] to share in the inheritance of the saints in the kingdom of light. 13For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, 14in whom we have redemption,[c] the forgiveness of sins."
This was our first full day in Maytown. We arrived around 7pm the night before and started to meet everyone. We got our first impressions of the interns and the other youth groups.
During worthship/devotion time this night Cj shared with us a story. I'm going to make it short just for the time and length effects.
-A little girl overheard her mother and a neighbor talking about how they didn't have any bread for their families to eat for the night. Even for being young the girl knew she needed to help. So she went down down the road to a family who was wealthy compared to those around them. Everyone in the town knew you didn't ask this family for anything but the little girl was determined. She went to the family and when the wife answered the door the little girl asked for some bread for her family to eat. The lady looked at her and said "Now you know we ain't into the lendin' and borrowin' business." The little girl looked at her and said, "Then give it to them."
That was our challenge for the week. Are we going to lend and borrow ourselves and our services to the people we meet in Maytown and God or are we going to give ourselves? Are we going to serve and help expecting people to give back to us? Or are we going to give and serve because that's what we are called to do?
We spent our first day at our designated work sites and I was fortunate enough to be sent to the Shepherd's home. We went there and met Jack and his family and their 500 dogs. We demolished his bathroom and worked to re-do his living room. My group was so super sweet too. We had Chris (a youth pastor from Peachtree City, Georgia), Erin (a girl in Chris' youth group), Jacob (a youth member from Corydon, Indiana), Zack (also from Corydon, Indiana), Austin (from my youth group), Caroline (from my youth group) and myself. Our leader was Alex May who we soon dubbed as Big Al.
Every night at worthship we started out by being asked...where did you see God today? Every gave answers of how they saw God in other people. I think I'm going to start doing this. When/if I blog at night I will tell where I saw God today. After dinner and worthship we have free time in the rec room. Monday night I spent talking with Jimmy (one of the interns). Jimmy just graduated from Miami University in Ohio and was preparing to leave for Italy in September. Jimmy and I talked about his future plans and he said after Italy he really has no idea. He studied Entrepreneurship and had planned on moving to Colorado to get involved in the ski resort business. Nothing seemed to work with that so he told God to lead him where he needed to go. He spent the past few months doing an internship with Campus Crusade and is now moving to Italy for a year to work for them.
Most of Monday was just spent meeting people and learning a little about each other. It was a good start to what was going to be an amazing week.
"You're the center of the Universe
Everything was made in You, Jesus
Breath of every living thing
Everyone was made for You
You hold everything together
You hold everything together
Christ be the center of our lives
Be the place we fix our lives
Be the center of our lives
We lift our eyes to Heaven
We wrap our lives around your life
We lift our eyes to Heaven, to you"
Sunday, June 22, 2008
i'm back at Olivet now and ready to leave. I feel so dry here. I don't know where the spiritual movement is. I get comfortable here and get comfortable with things and find it hard to keep moving forward. I love this school, the people, the professors and the area, but I find it hard to keep on a onward spiritual track. I don't really have a church here.
After returning from the missions trip I never realized how much I missed my home church. I have fallen in love with the youth and wish I could be there at all times with them.
I told my parents I would stay at Olivet so I suppose I will be here. I'm meeting with Dr. J this week so I can't wait to hear all he has to say about it.
Well my Maytown posts start tomorrow. I miss Maytown so much
Saturday, June 21, 2008
I will blog more when I'm not so tired and not trying to upload pictures. But I will put some.
This past week was the most amazing thing I have ever experienced. My mind has been stuck on waiting to hear from God, waiting to hear what his direction is for my life, and I went into this week hoping to hear those plans from him. What I got was so much more. It seemed like everyone around me has their life figured out and I was left by myself, however I met some interns this week who were in the same place I am in or have been there before.
I got to spend time speaking with a few of them and it was encouraging to find I wasn't the only one. Jody just finished his first year of college and isn't returning and actually doesn't know where he will be. I found that we were both searching and waiting for some direction from God. I pray God gives us both clear paths for our next move. Allison was freakin sweet and is actually a student at Ball State. BSU is her 4th college because none of the others seemed to be a good fit. Jimmy just graduated and thought he had his whole life planned out. He quickly realized they were his plans and not God's. He planned on moving to Colorado to open a ski/snow boarding resort, but instead he is leaving in a few months to live in Italy for a year with Campus Crusade. Erin also just graduated and is in the process of finding a job. Dan is the same year as me and well he seems to have it figured out. Ha
I dreaded today coming, because I didn't want to leave. Even thought I physically am not in Maytown, my hear is. However my heart spreads other places. It is in Corydon, Indiana and also Peachtree City, Georgia. They became a part of my story and the folks I met from those church are sweet. I'm glad I got the chance to start a friendship with them and look forward to keeping in contact.
I still don't know what my next move is or where I will be a couple months from now, but God does.
More Maytown blogging to come later :)
Saturday, June 14, 2008
So for today I remembered the innocence that is around me. And today I realized I don't miss the way things were, I love how things are now. I don't want things to change from here. I sure miss Olivet, but I love home. I'm ready to be back and to see everyone :)
I'm watching the Zent kids today and Mason (age 3) keeps telling me I'm his best friend. Today is a great day. Beautiful sunny weather, not too hott, just right for a summer day. I'm surrounded by the joys and blessings God has given me, and see that my life right now is as perfect as it could get.
There is a dinner tonight at church for those who are going on the missions trip. I'm more than anxious to get on the road tomorrow :) This trip is going to be great, I can't wait to see all God will open my eyes and my heart to. I pray God uses me where he sees most beneficial. I pray that those I (and the others) come in contact with see Christ in us and that our actions and our words reflect the love of our Saviour.
Friday, June 13, 2008
I almost didn't blog on this tonight, because well let's face it, love probably isn't my b est issue. But how can you not think about it? How can you not dream about it? How can you not hope that one day you will find it? I thought I found it and it didn't find me. Have I gotten over that feeling? Heavens no, but with time...maybe.
I look at couples all around me (especially at Olivet...because they seem to be everywhere) and I think "one day I will have what they have. I will find that one guy who is crazy about me, and isn't afraid to let the world know it. I will find a guy who loves me for who I am and the God I serve. I will find a guy who will fight for me and for our relationship. I will find that guy who won't let me walk away even when times get hard." Then I think to myself....who am I kidding. I already have a guy like that. Though I may never walk around in public holding his hand, I hold His hand everywhere I go. I have a guy who loves me for the God I serve (because I serve Him) and He would fight for me until his last breath (probably because he already did). I hate the typical "I'm in a relationship with God" rant, because let's face it we all should be in a relationship with God. But shouldn't we all want a relationship that reflects our relationship with God.
Shouldn't we want something that is never changing? Something that only gets better with time. Something that even when times get tough and times are hard we keeping fighting? God never gave up on us, he stayed on the cross until His last breath to give us the life He believes we need. He showed love in the most selfless way possible. I want a love that reflects the love God has for me. I want my love for someone to reflect the love I have for my Saviour. I want something that isn't great and ideal for a while and then when we get comfortable with each other it changes. I don't let myself get to a comfortable state with God, I keep moving forward.
"Love doesn't envy" I try not to want what others have, but I want a love that is a mirror image of my love for Christ and one that reflects the love my S.O has for Christ. Maybe I do have this love thing figured out, maybe I'm just waiting for someone who has it figured out as well.
Thursday, June 12, 2008
I think the word Christian is a good verb, but a terrible adjective. I don't tell people I'm a Christian, in face I'm almost ashamed when people call me one. In Christian Formation class last semester my prof asked "If you were to stop someone on the street and asked them how they would describe a Christian what would they say?" Everyone gave the typical Sunday School answers: caring, loving, helpful, compassionate. They there was me, the girl who can't keep her mouth shut about anything. I said, "I believe if you asked about a Christian, they would say, hypocritical, judgmental, and greedy, those are just to name a few. However if you asked about a Christ-Follower then you might get compassionate, loving, and caring." If you think about it, it's true. Anyone and everyone claims to be a Christian, celebrities say that because it's what we want to hear, but their actions tell another story. When I think of a Christ-Follower I think of Mother Teresa and Gandhi, just the two most popular. I think of someone who did selfless acts for the love of others and the love of Christ. I see people who didn't stand in the limelight professing their faith, because their actions spoke louder than magazines headlines ever would. I don't find any part of being famous glamorous. They say they are doing a good thing by giving to charity, but the amount they give is nothing compared to what they could give. Look at the church today, and by that I mean look at the churches today. They are so set on who can do what part best, in stead of creating one church that works together to be the body of Christ. God didn't say Baptist give money, Nazarenes feed the hungry, Pentecostals cloth the naked, he called us all to be one body. One denomination shouldn't be one part of the body. The church should be THE body. We are so into fancy high dollar buildings, that we forget the purpose they serve. We are so worried about having an abundance of everything, that we forget about those who have nothing. I think if Jesus was to come back today, he would be ashamed with how his people are living in this world. Would we be able to recognize Jesus? Would we take the time to bow to Him? or would we pass by with the hustle and bustle of our day?
I want to live so that God can call me anywhere and at anytime. I want to be so trusting and so willing that if I got a cal at 2am needing me to be somewhere I would go, knowing that it was for the best. My eyes have been opened a lot these past few days, to a live I was getting on track with, but needed some more forward motion. I am signing at church in a couple weeks with a little girl from the church, and the song we are signing is a little kids praise song, but even at 20 years old it rings true to a life I want to live.
"I'm gonna live so God can use me
anywhere Lord, anytime
I'm gonna live so God can use me
anywhere Lord, anytime
I'm gonna work so God can use me
anywhere Lord, anytime
I'm gonna work so God can use me
anywhere Lord, anytime
I'm gonna pray so God can use me
anywhere Lord, anytime
I'm gonna pray so God can use me
anywhere Lord, anytime
I'm gonna sing so God can use me
anywhere Lord, anytime
I'm gonna sing so God can use me
anywhere Lord, anytime"
Anywhere Lord and anytime, I am yours. Use me where you see best fit.
Thursday, June 5, 2008
Which Jesus do you follow?
Which Jesus do you serve?
If Ephesians says to imitate Christ
Then why do you look so much like the world?
Cause my Jesus bled and died
He spent His time with thieves and liars
He loved the poor and accosted the arrogant
So which one do you want to be?
Blessed are the poor in spirit
Or do we pray to be blessed with the wealth of this land
Blessed are they that hunger and thirst for righteousness
Or do we ache for another taste of this world of shifting sand
Cause my Jesus bled and died for my sins
He spent His time with thieves and sluts and liars
He loved the poor and accosted the rich
So which one do you want to be?
Who is this that you follow
This picture of the American dream
If Jesus was here would you walk right by on the other side
or fall down and worship at His holy feet
Pretty blue eyes and curly brown hair and a clear complexion
Is how you see Him as He dies for Your sins
But the Word says He was battered and scarred
Or did you miss that part
Sometimes I doubt we'd recognize Him
Cause my Jesus bled and died
He spent His time with thieves and the least of these
He loved the poor and accosted the comfortable
So which one do you want to be?
Cause my Jesus would never be accepted in my church
The blood and dirt on His feet would stain the carpet
But He reaches for the hurting and despised the proud
I think He'd prefer Beale St. to the stained glass crowd
And I know that He can hear me if I cry out loud
I want to be like my Jesus!
I want to be like my Jesus!
Not a posterchild for American prosperity, but like my Jesus
You see I'm tired of living for success and popularity
I want to be like my Jesus but I'm not sure what that means to be like You Jesus
Cause You said to live like You, love like You but then You died for me
Can I be like You Jesus?
I want to be like my Jesus
I want to be like my Jesus instead of looking like everyone else in the world today. Majority of us seem like mirror images of everyone around us. We act a certain way around some people, but when are with people of our past it's so easy to get sucked into their lifestyle. I had this conversation with one of my friends last night. I was with some friends in one om friends hometown and we met some of their friends from High School. The friends from High School were not Christians and it amazed me how fast their mode of conversation could change. My friend who is a strong Christian went to perverted mode real fast, gave into their jokes and crude humor and never thought twice about it. I asked one of my other friends if they noticed and they said yes and I asked...Why are we doing anything about it then? How is sinking down to their level bettering the kingdom of God? How is that being Jesus?
Within the past couple of days I have been spending time with people who I knew but never knew real well, and I have enjoyed every minute I have been with them. I spent last night sharing stories of the past with a girl who knows exactly where I come from because she's been there too. I've spoken to people from back home who I swore (not literally) I would never talk to again. Why? Because I want to be Jesus. I've taken on this whole care free no worries lifestyle and the past few days have been the best I've felt in a while. Let me re-think that. Since the beginning of 2008 life has never been better, I've really felt myself thirsting for God and drawing near to His word. I've found myself meeting new people and starting friendships that I'm so glad to have. I've found myself breaking down barriors and breaking down walls that I never thought would budge. I've found myself loving, everyone around me. But the past few days have just been a sense of peace and calmness. I know God has it under control.
I kind of got of subject with the song, but I'm hoping that this care free - worry free lifestyle is one step closer to being like Jesus. It's hard to be like the coolest man who ever walked the planet. I know I will never perfect it, but with each new day I can try. I love all who near me (and those who aren't), I can forgive those who have hurt me, I can take the time out of my day when someone needs me, I can learn to be a bit more flexible with my schedule (I'm a very planned out girl), I can learn to talk to everyone I pass by (I do if I make eye contact), I can learn to put myself and my feelings on the line. I want to be like my Jesus. I have the most amazing friends and family to keep me guided on that path.
Wednesday, June 4, 2008
Christen was my best friend throughout my senior year of high school. We were inseparable, we did everything together and she was an amazing friend. Never thought I would ever lose this girl.
I graduated high school and went on to college (Christen was a HS senior my freshman year of college). Like college can do sometimes it drifted Christen and I apart. I came back to coach HS bowling (she bowled for one of the other teams) and it seemed everything about Christen had changed. She was a proclaimed lesbian, smoking and drinking. I missed my best friend so much, and never realized it until then. I knew then Christen needed my prayers.
I lost touch with her again when I moved to Illinois, but she still was everyday apart of my prayers. I spoke with her beginning of spring semester this past school year and she told me wonderful news. She had quit smoking,drinking, and hadn't touched any illegal drugs in months. She was close to having a full time job and looking to start college in the fall. I knew God was listening to my prayers. I kept in touch with her for a couple weeks and then the semester got busy and I found myself not talking to her again.
I got a text from Christen today :). She is doing well. She got the full time job. Her parents let her move back in and said she could stay as long as she needed until she could pay for her own place. (That is a HUGE deal because things are not usually good between her and her parents). She is looking into going to film production and is still clean from drinking, drugs and smoking. She is still a proclaimed lesbian, but I know that God is still answering my prayers. I am so excited to hear all she has been doing with her life.
God really is a man of His word. He listens even when we think He isn't. I'm so happy to have Him in control on my life now. Never could I imagine turning away again :)
**The name was changed for privacy purposes
Monday, June 2, 2008
Contentment - something I wish this world knew more of. I fail at this many times. (In fact most of my blogs are written as a lesson for myself...not something I'm telling people to learn). It seems to me that everyone around us always wants something more. We are never satisfied with what we have. We measure our success by the possessions we have, not the lives we have touched. We always expect more from people around us instead of being happy with what they give to us, the mark they leave on our lives.
" Just as soon as I get what I want
I get unsatisfied,
Good is good but could be better
I keep looking, I keep looking for,
I keep looking for something more
I always wondered what's on the other side
Of the number two door
I keep looking, looking for something more."
Isn't that how many of us are? We want it all and when we get it we never think it's enough.
As the scripture read I'm learning to be content and I'm learning to be satisfied. When God looks at us, he never wonders what's behind the other door. He never wants more, he just wants it all, he never demands more than our everything. Shouldn't we just want all people can give us? Shouldn't we want to give our all in the name of Jesus?
I'm satisfied with everything I have in my life. (If you would have asked me a couple weeks ago that wouldn't have been the case), but today....I'm grateful for what I have. I don't want to expect more than what I have. In order for me to deserve more shouldn't I give more? God has given me all I need, why should I want for more?
"I'll stand with arms high and heart abandoned
In awe of the one who gave it all
I'll stand my soul, LORD to you surrender
All I have is yours"
Thursday, May 29, 2008
My pastor at church preached on this a couple weeks ago and today I read through James 1 again.
"Consider it pure joy, my brothers, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance." - James 1:2-3
In the world today it seems so difficult to praise God in all moments. When something goes our way we thank him for the blessings, but when things don't go our way we run to Him for help. Not a bad thing if you ask me, but when we ask God for his help and direction are we fully open to how things can go? and trust that God will make things turn out for the best?
"but when he asks, he must believe and not doubt, because he who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind." - James 1:6
I find myself guilty of this a lot. I find no problems asking God for his help but sometimes fail to think things will work. It's not that I don't believe God is incapable, but often wants things to go the way I have planned them. I forget that my plans are nothing compared to God's plans. I'm learning that God gives us test to test our faith in Him. I'm learning to roll with things. Letting God's plans work out for the best of my life :)
Wednesday, May 28, 2008
I finished my last blog stating that with all the changing going on it has left me thirsting for more of God. I'm not sure if it's the changing causing this or the changing opening my eyes to this.
I have been reading the book "When God writes your life story" By Eric and Leslie Ludy and it makes me think everytime. To live a truly happy and fulfilled life we must give up control of our mind, our body and our soul. We must learn to live in the direction of someone who knows better than we do. We must become a servant who is willing to bow to the commands of a new ruler.
So often we come to God only when we need Him or need something. We are led by our own desires and plans and simply ask Him to bless them and when he doesn't we think He isn't real or is incapable. When we lay exchange our life for Christ's, we lay down our agendas, dreams, desires, and plans at His feet. We get completely out of the way and allow Him to live His life through us in whatever way He chooses (Ludy, 71).
The life God has planned for us is not something we can accomplish in our own strength. He died to give us a life that is true- full of radiance and righteousness that transforms who we are.
God desired us to learn to love and give of ourselves, then sacrifice out earthly comforts to build His kingdom, then even shed our blood for Him as a statement of the greatest love. Imagine if there was SO MUCH MORE than God had in mind for us than we see modeled in the Christian community today. Imagine is He really did desire us to dream the impossible as little kids and then actually live the impossible as adults.
That's where my hunger is for God, more of Him and his strength to not only dream the impossible but to live the impossible. I have a theory that love can change the world. Many have shot me down saying it is unrealistic and it will never happen. But if the love I share with one person leads them to share love with another person, and etc. then isn't that a part of the world? And if more people with share the love of God then the chain reaction could be something incredible. Mother Teresa loved all and look at the impact she made. I want to radically live outside of this world, but when people hear the word radical, they often think liberal, and Heaver forbid a liberal Christ-follower (which I am not a liberal). Jesus was a radical and I want to be an image of Him.
I'm thirsting for God, for His strength, for others who want make a mark on the world. I am co-leading a missions trip in a few weeks in a poor community in Kentucky. I'm praying that God opens my heart and eyes as I prepare for this trip. I pray that God fills this hunger I have for Him, but that I give all my effort to drawing close to Him.
"Draw me close to you
never let me go
i lay it all down again
to hear you say that i'm your friend
you are my desire
no one else will do
'cause nothing else can take you place
to feel the warmth of you embrace
help me find the way
bring me back to you"
Tuesday, May 27, 2008
But who knew it would really be such a big part of growing up. I never thought I was afraid of change and now I'm convinced I'm really not (well for the most part).
It seems everything around me is changing. Most of the change is good, some could be bad but for now it seems necessary. I truly believe that some things must fall apart for others to fall into place. Friendships must come to a shaky end in order for more sturdier ones to be built. Trust must be broken in order for us to learn to be more cautious.
We give in. We give up the fight.
I use to have a set out detailed plan of how my life was going to go. For many of you that know me, that isn't surprising. I'm very organized and planned. I hate not being planned for things and last minute changes. But it's something I'm learning to do. Well I spent the last year with no control of how my life was going to go and now my scheduled out life is nowhere near how I imagined, in fact I don't really have any idea of how it will go.
It's changing and it's teaching me. God is teaching me. When you let go of what you want-you finally get it. I wanted something and something different. I handed it to God and I got more than I bargained for. He is teaching me. God and the boy. They are teaching me to just roll with things. Life doesn't always go according as planned. If I'm not willing to accept last minute changes, I'm going to miss out.
I'm learning with these changes. I recently had a friendship not end up the way I thought it would. Trust was broken and times were flaky and fake. Out of it I met girls who I wouldn't trade for the world. I'm sad it took me so long to meet them and grow a friendship with them but at the same time so grateful that I have them now.
A new family is going to be added to my family and that change is something huge in my family. A change we must accommodate for.
God is equipping me for these changes in my life. I fully rely on him, but recently all this changing has left me so thirsty for Him, for the Holy Spirit, for more of God. I need him to rescue me, to teach me, to walk with me. I'm starving for more of Him, I'm reaching out for Him. Things are always changing, but he's the one thing that remains. The only thing I will ever really need.
"I need you Jesus
to come to my rescue
where else can I go?
there's no other name by
which I am saved
capture me with grace
I will follow you"