Sunday, December 19, 2010

Healing is in Your hands.

You've been out of my prayers for a while now. Welcome back.

It's funny how all this turned out. Our relationship ending in two different outcomes for both of us. You turned to anything you could to take you further and further away from the Lord. Running towards things of this world that provided instant gratification. Hurting people who loved you and truly cared. Disrespecting yourself and giving up. I talked to my Father about you all the time. Telling Him how much potential you had, and trying to convince Him that you really did love Him and know who He is, but you were just running. Running away from your Father. Your REAL father. I remember asking Him to fix you while our paths were separate, and if it was meant to be to bring you back to me, because I couldn't change you. I could have never changed you. And time passed and now I'm definitely different. Our experience made me stronger, harder. A little bitter towards young relationships in general, but more importantly more cautious. It made me think twice before jumping into things. And I now know to love with a smart heart. To give that beautiful organ away sparingly. I'm still deciding whether or not that's a good thing. We're told to love abundantly, well I'm still learning how. I can't get this "it's not worth it" attitude out of my head, and I hate that, because I know it will be. Someday. I absolutely can not wait, but I won't give in until I'm sure.

And this all comes back to me now, because I finally see the connections. Everything falls into place, and all those "why" questions I asked myself so many times are now answered. I realize that He has eyes that see past, present, and future, and mine can only see each moment individually. Each of us can only see through our own tunnels, and our horns are blaring so loudly it's hard for us to hear others speak, much less His voice. It's like we're all connected to some thread of life, and it's impossible for us to see where we'll be knotted together or looped in the same needle. But one thing is certain-we are all connected. And we can't see the connections. Only He can. Thank God only He can. I'd probably have an anxiety attack if I knew what I had comin'. Two years ago I would have tried to change what ended up happening, but then I wouldn't be who I am today. I wouldn't think like I do, and laugh like I do, and thank like I do.

Now I can pray for you without crying, and think about you without wishing things were different, and that's what healing is all about. And I believe that He can bring about what's best for you even out of dumb decisions you make. That's why you're in my prayers tonight. Make yourself at home. You're welcome as long as you'd like.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Peace Love Relaxation

Well, this has definitely been my hardest semester in college. Just look at my October posts and you'll think I was depressed or something. Maybe I was, who knows, that word's pretty relative anyway. Nevertheless, I made it through! I am so thankful I made it through. And I'm still sane! ...I think. But regardless of how tough this semester was-mentally, physically, spiritually, and emotionally-the Lord never gave up on me. He was my joy when I felt so alone and exhausted. His word encouraged me to persevere and keep on pushing when I was so close to my limit. The joy that I have in Him was the only thing that I could cling to when my happiness and comfortability in this world didn't fulfill. At the end of the long days that were so very frequent I could lay my head back, close my eyes, and rest peacefully knowing that everything will be okay. I don't think I'll ever appreciate that enough-His peace. It passes all understanding, and even in the midst of all the crazy things this world puts us through, it is the glue that holds us together. When our confidence has been broken into 10 different pieces, it brings 10 people's kind words to lift us up. When we don't make a grade that is good enough for our standards, He sweetly whispers that He doesn't care if I'm "good enough". I take this love and peace for granted all too often, but looking back on this past semester, I couldn't be more grateful. Goodbye busyness, hello relaxation.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Are you dependable?

Dependability is so rare nowadays. It's such a crucial quality that people should strive for, yet no one seems to understand it's importance. I have been so frustrated lately with the lack of trustworthiness that has been so evident in my life for the past week. I've also been guilty of being undependable, so it's not generated towards one specific person, but man! I just can not get a break. And it's not like I'm begging people to do things and they end up not coming through. It's when people offer to do things, or assure me that they'll be there, and they don't follow through. Let your yes be yes and your no be no people! Geez, why is it so hard for us to commit? To keep out word no matter what. Everything is so relative, so unstable, and based on feelings. Just chasing after the wind. So frustrating. So sad. Maybe it's just the way I was raised. Maybe I just have extremely high expectations of people. Impossible expectations. Maybe I just put too much faith in people. Actions and words are so far apart that neither can be trusted. Ughh. I feel like I, myself, am the only one I can rely on. And that is wayy too much responsibility.

Thank you, Lord, for being the rock that I can build on. Only You are stable and firm. If only You could send me some of Your pebbles to help me build. I can't do this alone.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Free Falling

"So Christ has truly set us free.
Now make sure that you stay free,
and don't get tied up again in slavery to the law."
Galatians 5:1

I am free to ignore the world's lies of beauty. The ones that tell me that I must dress immodestly and without class to get a man's attention. The One who made the warm sunrise and the multicolored fishes of the sea calls me beautiful. It's incomprehensible to me. What could compare?

I am free to tune out the whispers of self-consciousness telling me that I'm not good enough. That I must do more, say more, be more. That in order for me to get a guy that meets all my standards, I must be the "perfect" example of a Christian. Or even more, the whispers that tell me my standards are too high, and they will never be fulfilled. We all fail, every second of every day, so perfection should not even be in our word bank to describe ourselves-or others for that matter. It's impossible. However, He is perfect, and the path He is leading me down has the perfect rainbows I need to see and the perfect obstacles I need to conquer.

I am free to not be upset when things don't work out as planned, or things don't go my way. When I have no control of a situation and fight everything in me to be patient and trust. When I try to do things myself, Christ becomes "of no value" to me, I fall away from grace, and I lose hope.

I am free of being deceived by lies, insincerity, and the unknown. We have been given a spirit of discernment (Phil. 1:9-11) to protect us from heartbreak, deception, and suspiciousness.

I am free to sing at the top of my lungs even the most horrible of noises, knowing that I was given my voice and tongue to please my Father, not mere men. Insecurities and second-guessing can be wiped away, remembering the reason for our gifts. Because Your love is better than life my lips shall praise You.

Although I have been given freedom from the things of this world, and freedom from Satan's terrible lies, so very often I still live in slavery to them.

I want to freely fall in love with Him. Lord, please push me.

Friday, October 29, 2010

I've found my joy again.

Nehemiah 8:10
Then he said to them, “Go your way. Eat the fat and drink sweet wine and send portions to anyone who has nothing ready, for this day is holy to our Lord. And do not be grieved, for the joy of the LORD is your strength.”
Take my life and let it be consecrated, Lord, to Thee. Take my moments and my days, let them flow in ceaseless praise.Take my hands and let them move at the impulse of Thy love. Take my feet and let them be swift and beautiful for Thee. Take my voice and let me sing always, only for my King. Take my lips and let them be filled with messages from Thee. Take my silver and my gold not a mite would I withhold. Take my intellect and use every power as You choose. Here am I, all of me. Take my life, it's all for Thee. Take my will and make it Thine it shall be no longer mine.Take my heart it is Thine own it shall be Thy royal throne.Take my love, my Lord I pour at Your feet its treasure store. Take myself and I will be ever, only, all for Thee. Take myself and I will be ever, only, all for Thee. Here am I, all of me. Take my life, it's all for Thee.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010


I believe I have a case of homesickness-and it's been going on for the past month.

I miss my family. I miss my mom's sweet heart of service, and my dad's warm embrace. I miss laughing with my brother and helping him with his homework. I miss my bed and the many-times-washed jersey sheets that come on it. I miss the comfort of my home friends, and the assurance that impression doesn't matter. And I miss beautiful silence.

I also miss feeling at home with the Lord. College life makes it extremely hard to spend lots of time with Him. I want to just rest in His arms for an hour, or a day-but I have 3 tests Friday. I'm so tired. I'm tired of being expected of so much, but not having enough to give. Of letting people down, time and time again. Never being fully understand, and not fully understanding anything. I just want to dwell with Jesus, every day, every moment, every second. I want to be fully surrounded by Him, but I'm stuck in a world that hates Him and never wants Him around. People who lie and deceive, boast and steal, fight Him more and more out of their life everyday.

This summer, I spent 10 weeks away from "home" and only felt homesick once. I have a small assumption as to why. I believe this summer was a taste of Heaven. Spending every waking moment serving the Lord, sharing life with brothers and sisters, and being encouraged every step of the way, made home not so far away. In fact, home followed us wherever we went. I was comfortable, able to trust, dwelling with the body of Christ, resting in the Giver of peace, and constantly being reminded of God's presence. There's something so incredible about that situation-too incredible for words.

So as I carry-on through this thing we call life, I long and yearn for that sense of home everyday. I anticipate next summer, to feel that embrace again, but moreover, I hope for the day when my real home will be eternal.

Is this normal? I think so.

“If I discover within myself a desire
which no experience in this world can satisfy,
the most probable explanation
is that I was made for another world” -C.S. Lewis

I agree, my friend, I agree.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

The Rose

This is a story told by Matt Chandler about love. Not the normal, lovey-dovey, wordly definition of love, but agape love-love from the Creator of this universe, Jesus Christ. I've heard it several times, but my college minister at Montevallo shared it with us tonight in worship, and I absolutely love it, so I thought I'd share...

Matt had recently met a girl in class that had been struggling with purity. Him and some friends were trying to get to know her and serve her through the group. He found out about a band that was coming in town, and so he figured it would be wonderful fellowship. So they're sitting at the concert and the speaker gets up and begins an illustration by taking out a beautiful red rose and passing it around the arena. By the time it made its way back to the speaker, everyone had touched it, smelled it, and in turn, tarnished it in some way. The speaker picked up the rose and said, "Now who would want this rose? Who would want this dirty, broken rose that everyone has touched?" Matt said it took all he had in him not to stand up and shout, "JESUS WANTS THE ROSE! HE WANTS THE ROSE! He wants the rose..."

You can watch it here:

So whether you're torn, battered, bruised, crushed under a heavy weight, or you just don't feel worthy enough for the call, remember Jesus wants the rose.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

It's just not worth it.

It's not worth giving pieces of my heart out, and being vulnerable to pain.
It's not worth inconsistency, uncertainty, or shame.
It's not worth being lied to, feeling inadequate, or being let down.
It's not worth getting my hopes up, leaving me hopeless in a torn gown.
It's not worth all the memories, the expectations, or regrets.
Not even worth the chasing, deceiving, or forgets.
It's not worth giving it everything I've got, just to find out later you've moved on.
As much as I want to believe I'm the exception, the truth is I'm just another fish in the pond.
Because even though the laughing, smoothies, smiles, texts, phone calls, flirting, loving, giving, hugging, pursuing, and fun are as wonderful as they seem.
It's really just not worth getting hurt to me.

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Problem Solver

A group of friends and I call this past weekend the Failtacular Frenzy, basically because everything that could go wrong went wrong. I'm not even going to try to explain all that happened, because it would be useless complaining and wasted words. However, I did learn something huge about myself-I'm too much of a problem solver.

I hate the fact that I am clumsy, forgetful, and careless with words. I hate the fact that I am never certain of the things the Lord is doing for my safety, or the devil is doing for my aggravation. I hate that I am so very neglectful of my time spent with the Lord, talking or just listening. I hate that the people that mean the most to me feel abandoned because of my full plate. And finally, I hate the fact that even though I know the Lord is sovereign, I still worry and panic.

These are just a few of the "problems" of being me. And I'm a problem solver, so I want to fix it all. Yesterday at the lake, I was not able to fix a single problem that occurred, leaving me very downhearted and defeated. "It's not your fault," many would say. But yes, many things could have been prevented had I not been so forgetful. However, there were some things that were out of my control, and for that I was frustrated and thankful.

There are good things to being a problem solver-like loving to untie knots, do wordsearches, come up with inventive ways to solve brainteasers-but unfortunately those things aren't always the problems. Also, having a problem-solving personality totally clashes with God's sovereignty.

I have always been taken back by people who have lived very hard lives, lived in poverty, been through long-relationship breakups, and have many more problems than I do, rejoicing and living like they have no care in the world. But I've just realized that that's the beauty of joy. That's the beauty of Christ-realizing how imperfect I am, and how much perfection He shows. Knowing that He is more concerned about the development of my character than the assurance of my comfort.

Even though I still will try my hardest to fix all these "problems" in my life, I know that I can't fix everything. Change is very good, but even we can't change our sinful nature. It was born in us, it eats at us, and it's our default. But as we impatiently wait for the day when the consequences of it will be completely gone, we can hope in the Lord. We can ask Him to change us, ask Him to fix our problems. He will.

But until then I'll still be playing with puzzles.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

I have rotten ears. Not in the literal sense, of course, but figuratively it describes my newest challenge.

Think of an apple. If an apple is not eaten and used to fulfill it's purpose (provide nutrients for the human body) it begins to rot and decay, leaving it nasty and useless. This is how I feel my "listening ears" have become. I have realized this week that I am an awful listener. Most of the time when someone is talking to me, I'm thinking about the next thing I'm going to say. How rude! Our ears are supposed to be used for listening to others and learning about others' needs, wants, experiences. If I'm so focused on me, how can I ever truly sympathize with someone, relate to someone, hear someone. Maybe it's not even me thinking about myself, but being concerned with my cellphone, the Internet, or someone else. I know if the tables were swapped and I was the one being treated like this, I would feel very inadequate and unheard.

My newest challenge is to really listen- even to the point of sharing in others' joy and pain. I'm turning my listening ears on.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010


Here it is. The blog I've been waiting so long to write. The blog description of my summer.

Honestly, it's impossible for me to describe my summer in a word, a sentence, or even 5 pages. It was an experience that unless you were there, you couldn't understand. I feel like that's how everyone's summer was. Even the people that I was with this summer had different experiences and came out differently changed than me. But maybe, as I tell you the aftermath of the summer, you can get a feel of what it was like for me, and how I've been changed.

Arriving in Birmingham on Friday, August 6th, with the team I had spent 75 days enduring, ministering, and loving with, was as surreal as leaving my family and friends for three months of work with 25 people I did not know. I say this, because at the beginning of the summer that's what I thought I was doing-leaving home to work a simple job that would be over in three months. Yeah, I would get to know the people, and I would travel to many different states and see many places I had never seen before. And yes, I would leave with a pretty good paycheck, only to return to Alabama with the same plan and goals I'd had for years.

Later that Friday evening with only one of my team members riding beside me, I returned home. Thankfully, I was able to ease into real life, as Nabo and I got pedicures, went to Walmart (without a time limit!), watched the End of the Year video, and cried our way through Dear John. We went to bed around 9:30, easily drifting into sleep in my cozy bed. The next day, we met her mom for lunch, and I drove back home. I was by myself, driving, and not on a schedule-three things that had been remotely impossible for the 75 days prior. Surprisingly, I was okay. I didn't even cry.

Then came Sunday. It hit me sitting in the pew of my home church. I was only a couple rows over from where I gave my life to Christ, my brother sitting beside me, watching my mom play the piano as beautifully as ever, surrounded by people who love me. But it hit me. It took all I had not to stand up and run out, knowing that I was about to start the ugly cry. Sitting in a church that I had grown up in, watching the same people do pretty much the same thing, with about the same enthusiasm they've always had. Not saying that their worship was fake, or that the Spirit was stagnant, but it was all just so familiar. EVERYTHING that I had experienced for the last three months had been unfamiliar, new, and life-changing. I was used to participating in every service, hearing new modern worship songs played every morning and evening, and seeing the Lord move in so many different ways that I didn't know how to handle it. It wasn't strange to see students and leaders running out of the service, so they could confess, repent, and surrender to their convictions. I was accustomed to worshipping and ministering beside people whose heart beat to the same tune as mine, and equally, if not more, pursued the Lord's face daily. Everything was amazing. Everything was a blessing. Everything was a miracle waiting to happen.

I knew it would be hard returning back to normalcy after such an incredible summer. It's in the little things, like accidently bumping someone in line at a restaurant and not apologizing, because you were used to having your team surrounding you at all times. Like needing gaf tape to make a label for something and not having any. Like wanting to put drape up around the stage at your church, because the bare screens annoy you. Like thinking you're dreaming, because you're spending time with your brother. And finally, thinking constantly about what the other 25 people you experienced this with are doing throughout the day.

But back to the life-change. During the summer, the Lord really opened my eyes to how much I love ministry and serving Him. At one point during the summer I was ready to go straight into the mission when I returned home. Pack up my bags and move to Africa-thinking that it would be the only way to serve the Lord like he wanted. Satan knew that I was weak, and so he constantly sat on my shoulder and told me that I was being selfish staying in America and getting an education. I was very emotionally unstable and fearful of what God's plan for my life might be, so I confessed to my team my fears and asked for prayer. I am so thankful that I was given boldness for this, because through my brothers and sisters, my Heavenly Father began to speak. The words of advice spoken to me directed me towards insight and understanding, which ultimately brought my heart peace. Because sometimes we get in our minds what "missions" looks like. We get our concept of how we would best serve our Maker, but that might not be the path God wants us to take. I know that I want to serve in another country someday, but that doesn't mean I need to be ignorant and move to another country without investigation. The Lord of compassion gave me community, showing me that I'm not alone, and many other of my team members have the same yearnings and desires as me. He gave me a new trust in Him, and the desire to wake up every day and ask Him to use me as His disciple in whichever way He sees fit. He gave me the peace to return to school okay with the fact that I might not want to pursue dentistry, but maybe teaching, or maybe something else, but just the peace to be okay with uncertainty.

He also gave me 25 brothers and sisters who taught me, invested in me, and ministered to me in ways I could have never imagined. For that I am grateful, and because of them I am forever changed.

So as this summer ends, and I return back to "real life" and school, I have a new understanding, knowledge, and desire to truly seek Abba, our Heavenly Father, His work, His people and His will daily. All I have left to say is thank you. I love you, OT'10.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Guided by Love.

Growing up, I always wanted to be the best at everything I did. I lived by the verse, "Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not men...", which I still believe, by all means, but in turn, I became very prideful. I wanted to be perfect, I mean, after all, God says to be perfect as He is perfect, right? I thought doing everything right was the only way to be a better Christian. I was wrong.

Ben Stuart spoke last night about the difference between obeying a standard, or being guided by love. Obeying a standard includes making a list of things that spiritual people do, and thinking that by doing these things, you also may be more spiritual and in tune with Christ. So there are three things that might happen after making this list: 1. You get tired of living by someone else's rules and standards and you give up. 2. You stick with it, but because you can never be good enough, you spend most of your life defeated and withdrawn. Or 3. You follow every rule, do everything right, and you know the name of every person who doesn't. And you become prideful. NONE OF WHICH IS CHRISTIANITY.

Option three was my issue. However, I knew I was "supposed" to be humble, so I didn't show the self-praise I had built up inside. But it was there, oh yeah, it was there. I made sure I was at every church service, I read my Bible every night, I never drank, cussed, smoked, and I frowned on every person that did. I was wrong.

Thankfully, God grabbed my heart a few years ago, and I've never been the same. I had so much guilt and shame for my foolishness and lack of love. Because the truth is, going to church every Sunday and reading our Bibles every night just to check something off the list isn't true Christianity. It's not seeking God's face everyday, or being more like Jesus. It's not being guided by love.

Being guided by love means "[seeking] FIRST His kingdom and righteousness". And then, we'll want to obey Christ, and we'll want to enter into His holy sanctuary, we'll want to hear from Him through His word, and we'll want to do everything as if we're working for the Lord. It won't be some list of standards to maintain.

Being guided by love means walking slowly to make sure an opportunity isn't missed, talking with Christ about even the little things in life, being more concerned about the body of Christ than what's going on tomorrow, or spending time investing in people's lives and not worrying about the fact that you need to be at dinner in five minutes.

I say all this because I still struggle with it. I'm a huge planner, and so to be guided by love and not time, or agenda, or order is tough sometimes. It's something Christ is changing within me, and I wanted to make sure to remember what He's doing.


Thursday, July 8, 2010

My Week Full of His Strength

Week 6 in Cedarville, Ohio has truly been a roller coaster.

It began with a nice Fourth of July celebration with my teammates. Although the bittersweet feeling of not being with my family at the lake for the holiday crossed my mind numerous times that day, it was refreshing to spend the day with some of the most wonderful people I've ever known. It also made me realize that it's okay to change things up sometimes. Great people, barbeque, and fireworks never disappoint.

The next few days dragged on as tiredness and fatigue set in, making it miserable to wake up in the morning. I missed my alarm three days in a row, but thankfully my roommates made sure I got to devo on time. I haven't been feeling well lately, and to make a long story short, after a little research, I suspected that my thyroid might be acting up. I'd hoped it was nothing, but I figured I'd get it checked out anyway. I got an appointment at a nearby family practice, and hopefully I'll get the results back soon. One thing I wanted to touch on, however, was this doctor's office. On one of the papers I had to fill out before I went in asked if I would like prayer today. I figured I'd check yes, and they would maybe mention my name to the Big Man in their prayers that evening, or maybe they'd lift me up quickly as they scanned the pages looking for my insurance card information (after all, I didn't come in for anything TOO serious). But no, before the doctor left, she asked to pray for me. She spoke such words of kindness and blessing over our ministry that I couldn't help but tear up a bit. Thanks for the reassurance of prayer warriors, Lord, we all need that sometimes.

Rewinding a bit, Tuesday night I had one of those "life-changing moments". After reading a few blogs from a missionary in Uganda that I follow, I sat in bed for probably ten minutes sobbing heartbroken tears. She speaks of her life in Uganda and the feelings she has when she comes back to the states to fundraise or visit her family. She speaks of how Christ works through her village and uses her in ways she will never understand. And finally, she speaks of her dependence on her Father, Abba. She logically can not explain where a lot of her funding comes from, how she pays most of her bills, or how she is the adoptive mother for twenty-some-odd little girls. She is totally and completely dependent on the Provider. How amazing it would be to see God's hand like that in our lives. I began to think about what that would mean for me, and it terrified me. I've felt God urging my heart more and more towards missions and serving somewhere else, but I'm so fearful. I want to be ready to follow where ever He leads, whatever that entails. The only thing that keeps me hopeful is that my very existence is dependent on the Provider. Why worry about where I am, or what I'm doing? He's sustaining my every breath. The only thing I can do is take His mission one day at a time and offer every hour, minute, second to Him.

And lastly, tonight. Have you ever been in a worship service where you felt like you couldn't do enough to praise? If you haven't, I hope you do one day. I felt like I couldn't sing loud enough, I couldn't jump high enough, and I couldn't reach far enough. I wanted to smile, laugh, cry, sing, dance, scream, shout. I couldn't hold it in. I honestly feel like my heart and soul were united with the Spirit that obviously had control of the room. But yet, in my earthly nature, I was still flawed, sinful, separated, grounded. Man, I can't wait till Heaven, for "when Christ shall come, with shout of acclamation, and take me home, what joy shall fill my heart. Then I shall bow, in humble adoration, and then proclaim: 'My God, how great Thou art!'"

But to sum this all up, it's just been a wonderful week. Without staffers, our team really had to go the extra mile and take care of each other. And we did it. Many of us were able to enter into completely opposite worlds of camp and come out with new perspectives and new found respect for our teammates.

"Now the body is not made up of one part but of many...But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be."
-1 Corinthians 12:12-18

I have an inspirational team and an indescribable Lord. Man, what a great week.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

Crazy Love

Lately, I’ve been feeling sort of fake. I think it comes with the job description, you know, being an actor and all. Just going through the motions, not allowing any outside feeling or situation affect me too much. Always being aware of my facial expression, what others see when they look at me, questioning every action, thought, word. Being critical about every situation, every person, my motives, emotions during worship. I feel like I’m getting caught up in everything, and catching nothing.

My heart is deceiving me. It’s longing after things that are not eternal, and although in my head I know where I stand with the Lord, my heart is not satisfied in Him. I can’t become satisfied in Him by myself. Sure, I could try. I could act like I’m falling in love, but I don’t want that. I want to truly desire the Lover of My Soul more than any attention, any person, or any feeling. I don’t want to just feel like I’m worshipping. Or feel like I’m talking to Him. Or feel like I’m serving. I want to act in spirit and in truth.

So I rest on His promises.

“Dear children, let us not love with words or tongue but with action and in truth. This then is how we know that we belong to the truth, and how we set our hearts at rest in His presence whenever our hearts condemn us. For God is greater than our hearts, and He knows everything.” -1 John 3:19-20


You are not the most important thing in this life to me. I believe Your will is, but not truly seeking Your face. I’ve chosen so many things over You time and time again, and I’m sorry for that. I want You to change me, so that I would long to genuinely enjoy You. I want to experience true satisfaction and pleasure and joy in our relationship. I want to love You more than anything on this earth. I want to treasure the kingdom of heaven so much that I’d willingly sell everything in order to get it. I need to give myself up. I am not strong enough to love You and walk with You on my own. I can’t do it, and I need You. I need You deeply and desperately. I believe You are worth it, that You are better than anything else I could have in this life or the next. I want You. And when I don’t, I want to want You. Be all in me. Take all of me. Have Your way with me.

(excerpts from Crazy Love, by Francis Chan)

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Training Week/Week 1: LA Tech

I just thought I'd share a few quotes, as well as some Scripture, that the Lord has been revealing to me these past two weeks...

"If our God is for us, then who could ever stop us? And if our God is with us, then what could stand against?"

"For it is God who works in you to will and to act according to His good purpose."-Philippians 2:13

"Whom shall I fear? My help comes from the Lord."

"Our God is greater, our God is stronger, God you are higher than any other."

"There is love that never fails, no matter how dark, my God prevails."

"We are not sinners because of what we DO, we are sinners because that's who we ARE outside of the grace and mercy of the Lord Jesus Christ."

"God takes broken pieces and makes masterpieces, and He takes the vulnerable and makes it valuable."

"Let us not be about the American Dream, but about the Kingdom Dream."

"I do not set aside the grace of God, for if righteousness could be gained through the law, CHRIST DIED FOR NOTHING."-Galatians 2:21

"Religion says that you have to obey the law to get acceptance, but Christianity says that your acceptance leads to obedience and results in a relationship."

"Suffering is a part of God's will for your life."

"Don't isolate yourself, insulate yourself."

Also, God has laid on my heart the joy of sponsoring a child through Compassion International. I would really like to sponsor a girl from a Spanish-speaking country, because since the Lord has given me a love for Spanish, and in wanting to make it my minor, I would be able to help her with English, while she helped me with Spanish. I could visit her sometime, and we would just have that instant commonality. However, while looking through packets, God placed 4 girls on my mind-1 from El Salvador, 1 from Peru, and 2 from Africa-and obviously, I can not sponsor all four. I began to pray for these girls, and asked the Lord which would have the most need. One girl from Africa, Faith, stood out in my mind, and I just can't get her beautiful smile out of my head. Also, another girl from Africa, Joy, stayed on my mind as well. While preaching one evening, Ed Newton spoke the words, ", don't miss this, JOY!" So yeah, that threw me for a loop. A few days later I found out that a girl from my team is sponsoring the girl from Peru, Melissa-an answer to my prayers. So now it's down to the three-Faith, Joy, and Mayra. I'm putting it in the Lord's hands, because if He wants me to sponsor a girl from Africa, then by golly, that girl needs my help, so I will.

Now, I'm sitting in Limon, Colorado, about to experience my second week at camp in Estes Park, Colorado starting Monday. I'm a little nervous about altitude sickness, but hopefully everything will be fine. I'm still so very thankful for my wonderful team, and I'm super excited about the rest of the summer. My prayer is for safe travel, and teenagers lives to be changed this week.

Much Love.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Awesome God

To sit and see a worship leader standing with hands raised, worshiping his Savior during PRACTICE is an AWEsome moment. The word awesome literally means amazing, inspiring, full of awe, admiration, or wonder. So I ask myself, what am I in awe of? At that moment, David Walker was in awe of the Almighty God, the Creator of the Universe, the Lover of our Souls, the Maker of our hearts. At that moment, Christ was sufficient. At that moment, standing in awe of our Lord showed what really matters in this life. That one moment spoke volumes. My response?


What else can you do? When someone else is directing their heart towards Christ, how could I not? HE is the only worth my affection. HE is the only one worth my heart. HE is the only one worth my awe.

Monday, May 31, 2010

Camp Starts Today!

Okay, so today is the first day of the rest of the summer...and I am super excited! In about an hour students will start showing up and the fun will begin! I know the Lord will move this week, because He promises that where two or more are gathered, there He will be also. But I don't have much time to blog, hopefully I'll have time later, so OT '10, HERE WE GO!

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Student Life 2010

So, as many of you know, I will be working for Student Life Ministries this summer. We will be traveling over most of the U.S. hosting camps and conferences for youth, hoping to help students know God by His word. I knew Student Life was special, but I never realized how unique an organization like this is. I know God is going to change my life this summer.

First off, the people I work with are phenomenal. They are true servants of the Most High, and they just lift me up and give me hope for this world every day. I can tell that my team (Orange Team '10!) is going to be a team of encouragement and strength. I know that on my worst days I can lean on them to direct me to the One who will sustain me no matter what. We've been sharing our "YOU"s lately, which are fifteen minute presentations about our lives, and my team's testimonies and stories truly excite me about what I will learn from them this summer. The girls are so wonderful, and I can see many of us becoming really close, and the guys are men of character and have such a passion for the Lord-which in my opinion is very rare in this world today. And not to mention we won staff rec yesterday! I'm not saying this boastfully, but just to mention that even when we were losing, my team was still patting each other on the back. Basically, my team rocks.

This morning God rocked my world by showing me how ungrateful I am, and how wonderful He is. We had our LDP (Leadership Development Program) team member from Kenya, David, share his testimony this morning. He spoke about his life growing up and my heart just broke. Thankfully, Christ used Compassion Ministries to reach David and draw him to Himself. Christ was David's EVERYTHING. He had nothing, but Christ. And Christ was enough.

Man, I don't know if I could say that. Yeah, I could say it, but would it be true? I recently saw John Piper's video, The Prosperity Gospel, which speaks about this, and my life has been challenged ever since. So basically this summer is going to very interesting to say the least, but I can not wait to see what the Lord has planned! One of our production staff quotes is..."Striving for excellence, because we serve an excellent God," so I just pray that we would be good stewards of the Gospel and keep in mind that it's not about us.

Less of me, more of You.