Tuesday, May 29, 2007


I won't waste your time or mine with my excuses for not updating regularly so let's just get into the real stuff.

It was about 4:30am Friday night/Saturday morning when I was reflecting on some recent events and conversations. What was I doing up at that time you may ask? Jr. High Girls Lock In 2007. We rented several wholesome PG movies to entertain us, one of which was Flicka. It’s a movie about a teenage girl seeking her own identity and independence who finds herself connected to a young horse she names Flicka. The main character feels she can relate to the horse because the horse is untamable, like herself. Since Jr. high students are beginning their journey towards independence I thought somehow they could relate. The movie ends with the main character saying all she felt was free. In all of her searching what she found was freedom.

This made me start thinking of other movies with freedom as their theme – Braveheart, Amistad, Freedom Writers, The Little Mermaid, Bruce Almighty. I realized that we are not much different than the people in these movies, we desire freedom too. The same way that God has placed a desire for Himself in our hearts, we have an inherent desire for freedom. Interestingly enough, the freedom that we seek is also found in Him.

Romans 7:24- 25 “Oh, what a miserable person I am! Who will free me from this life that is dominated by sin and death? Thank God! The answer is in Jesus Christ our Lord.”

God offers us freedom from sin, freedom from death, and the freedom to choose Him or not. When we say yes to God, we say no to other things. We choose to sacrifice other freedoms for a greater and lasting freedom found in Him. In Jesus’ story, he chose to say yes to God. He gave up his own freedom, his high place in heaven, his comfort, his family, his friends, his entire life to allow the world to have freedom and abundant life.

Ultimately, our freedom is not found in our independence but in our dependence on God. Freedom is found in a relationship with Him and His people. We need each other.

...if none of that makes sense, just remember it came to me at 4:30 in the morning.

Wednesday, February 7, 2007

It's All Good

So it's been a couple of weeks since my last post, I apologize for not keeping up with this the way I should but I'm working on it. I'll give you a few highlights since then, classes are still going pretty slow, except for ceramics, I work during and outside of class to finish pottery which I'm pretty terrible at, but I turned in my pot today and was actually proud of it instead of being embarrassed like last time. My movement class is fun, I'm learning how to sword fight and how to do yoga type stuff. Because classes are slow I have a lot more social time to hang out with my friends and I'm not stressed over homework or tests. I'm in a cute rental car for the week while my car is in the shop. I got nominated for Mercer's homecoming court. Wesley Week was an easy relaxed success filled with fun events. I'm in a bowling tournament this weekend, how random! We had a staff retreat last week, got to eat awesome food and do some staff bonding. My nephew is growing at an enormous rate and he's laughing too, as well as spitting up on me.

But the thing I'm most excited about is youth ministry stuff. A couple of weeks ago we had Inside Out when the Sr. high were on ski trip and even though we were missing several of our regular adults and volunteers, it went well nonetheless. It was a really good feeling, knowing that I'm capable even though a lot of times I feel inadequate. Not that I want to have youth without our adults and volunteers, because they definitely bring way more to our ministry than I ever could. This past Saturday we did Meals on Wheels and a Scavenger Hunt, that was by far the most fun I've had in quite a while...a good time was had by all, especially Beth's team that won the hunt. The Super Bowl Party was awesome, although my team lost. We had tons of students and visitors and adults. It was really relaxed and fun, and who doesn't love the Toilet Bowl Tournament?!

In the midst of all these activities the thing that stands out most in my mind over the past couple weeks is a story that Shane shared on Sunday morning. It was about the Jr. High guys that reached out to the homeless man and welcomed him to our church. This story has really left an impression on me because I've been trying to put myself in their place. What would I have done had a homeless man asked me where he could get a shower? I think I would have shrugged and walked off in fear. I wouldn't have talked to him or had a conversation, I wouldn't have invited him anywhere. Especially not in the 8th grade. The only person I was thinking about in 8th grade was me, and sometimes that mindset hasn't changed much. I am so proud of these guys. I am so proud just to know these guys. And I am blessed that I get to share in their lives. Can you imagine what kind of potential they have? They are making a huge impact as 8th graders, imagine what they will do in the next 5, 10, and 20 years. I look forward to seeing the men of God that they will become. So that story definitely made my eyes water up and I couldn't be more proud of them. I'm also proud and excited for Patrick and Carlos for placing so high in wrestling. Our guys are tearin' it up!

Needless to say, life is good!

Sunday, January 21, 2007


Today I had the pleasure of sitting with my family at church. It has been a rarity since I was about 10. My parents and I don't go to the same church so I hardly ever get to worship with them. I am really glad that I got the chance to do that this morning. My parents and I are very different and I could even see in church today that we worship a lot different too. My first thoughts were negative of course. Like why are they so critical, why are they so spacey, why are they so talkative, why don't they pay attention, why do they ask so many questions, why don't they listen, etc, etc. But then after thinking about it...I am "they". I am a product of who they are. I am who I am because of who they are.

I learn to appreciate my family more and more everyday. I truly believe that God gave me to my parents because He knew that I would do my best by being raised by them. Am I saying that everybody has perfect parents and everyone grows up to be perfect? No, there are parents who neglect their kids, who abandon and abuse them. But I believe that God gives parents their children because the children have the most potential with those parents, whether the parents live up to their potential is their own choice. I don't know if that makes sense but I do know that God knew each and every one of us before we were in the womb. That he created every part of us. And I trust that He knows which child should go with which parent.

I love my family. I'm not saying I agree with everything they do and say or that it's always easy communicating with them or that we always get along perfectly. But I know that I would be much worse off without them. I am blessed to have the loving family that I do. I am blessed to have spent those moments in worship with my family this morning. I hope someday that my entire family will worship together in heaven, that we will get to spend eternity together with God.

As a side and ending note my dad made the comment that today he felt the most comfortable at my church than he ever had before. What a nice thought, people being comfortable in church...its something to work toward.

Sunday, January 7, 2007

A Recap

It's been a while, sorry about that. I've wanted to update tons of times, even started writing some entries and then got interrupted. Because it has been a long time I'll let you know what I've been up to since my last post. I took finals, they weren't too bad. Just one written test and four papers...could have been worse. My grades were pretty good, and I'm glad to be done with that semester. It's weird though to think that I only have 3 more semesters until I graduate from college, makes me feel kind of old.

The day after finals was over I started a seasonal job at the mall...personalizing ornaments. Yeah, totally not my thing but as always I need more money. And by far the best part was the oh so stylish bright red apron that I got to wear as my uniform in which I had to wear in front of thousands of people while running through the mall on my 15 minute break for dinner. As weird as it sounds, I'm still glad I did it though.

Then Christmas was amazing, I got to spend time with tons of people that I care about and it was highly enjoyable...I also got to eat A LOT. I got exactly what I wanted without telling anybody what it was, which is a huge blessing!!! My parents are paying my tuition this semester...I won't have to worry about money for 7 months, it's amazing. I almost started crying when they told me. God takes care of me so much more than I ever deserve.

A definite highlight since my last post is that I went to Passion 07. It's a Christian conference for college students. It was unbelievable, there were 25,000 college students there...I've never seen so many people before. It was just crazy! Also, my boy David Crowder was one of the worship leaders along with Chris Tomlin, Charlie Hall, Matt Redman, you know the crew. I got to hear Beth Moore, Francis Chan, Louie Giglio, and John Piper speak as they gave great information and encouragement to all of us.

Which brings me up to this weekend, Friday I went wedding dress shopping with my best friend - no I'm not getting married, she is. She picked out a beautiful dress that is absolutely perfect for her. And I think I know what I'll be wearing as her maid of honor and I actually like it. Then I went to a Thrashers game, that's hockey by the way. They lost but it was super fun because I had never been to one before. Then Saturday I crushed the Jr. High in bowling as always! It was so much fun getting to see everybody again, after not being together for several weeks. I start to have withdrawals when we don't meet for so long. Then youth tonight was great, got to see everybody again, and I got to catch up with some students that I haven't seen in a while.

Overall it was a crazy busy month in the midst of a crazy busy year. But I definitely like it that way. As mentioned earlier, I went to Passion and I am so glad that is how I started my year off. It was so refreshing to go to. I really felt like God poured a lot into me, it was like information overload but it was so much of what I need. Sometimes when I feel like I want to learn more that there's not a place for me to go to for that. It can be really discouraging. But I felt totally different this past week at Passion. I was with my peers and they understand what I'm going through and how I feel because they're going through it too. And the people that were leading us had those things in mind as they led. What they did was purposeful and intentional to reach us where we are. I didn't have to do anything and it was like truth and knowledge and wisdom were just there waiting for me. I didn't have any responisbilities it was just freely given. It was nice to receive so much.

That seems to be a theme in my life that God gives me so much...so much of Himself, so many relationships, so many experiences, so many gifts and provision, so much knowledge. I never go in need, I never starve, I've never been homeless, somehow things always work out. Because of that I am slowly learning to trust God more and me less. I realize a little more everyday how much I need God to be in control of my life because when I try to do it on my own it just doesn't work. When God is in control of my life not only does it work, but it flourishes. I am more blessed than I could have ever imagined. And so my prayer is more of Him and less of me.