Tuesday, August 30, 2005

Ah...School...so crazy

Okay, so I knew I would have a lot of reading to do this semester, but this is ridiculous...oh well, it's a good thing I enjoy reading (although I think you kind of have to, to be an English major). So things are busy, but that's good. I'm liking it so far.

One thing that's cool is that I'm in some early English literature classes and the writings from those times are drenched in religion. The people during those times were so into their religion and it encompassed every aspect of their lives. I know it would be nice if we could say we were the same, but really...do we do and say everything in a way that projects our love for Christ to other people? So I've just been really convicted. There are people in my classes that don't even know about my faith or what I think about God. What a heartbreaker. But reading these authors, it seems like God was really evident in every aspect of their lives. And I've heard it all my life that we should reflect Jesus every day and people shouldn't be able to mistake what we're all about. So thanks to all of the authors that have long-since past. I thoroughly enjoyed your convicting kick to the shins. Ha..I just pictured Mary Wollstonecraft lifting her skirt off of her shoes and giving me a swift one right to the tibia...funny.

So that's what I've learned in just the short time I've been reading in my classes. Don't let your life make people mistake who you are or be in the dark about your faith. Let them see what's different about you. Coo. (that's slang for cool, sorry to all of the people that hate it when I say that...not really...get over it)

On a more humorous note, I was inspired by Terri's blog about Super Mario Brothers and Nintendo. So the other day, Adam and I beat SMB 3. It was great fun and we got to do something we hadn't done in years (well, we never played together when we were kids). But I have to say, I am SOOO much better than he is! I had to do all of the work and beat all of the levels. Well, I guess he did help...a little. So, I guess Adam and I are the coolest nerds you'll ever meet. Ha! So let me ask, what's your favorite Nintendo game, and did you ever beat it??? Let me know.

Wednesday, August 24, 2005

Switching Thought Processes

Okay, so I just got done reading Herschel's latest post and it was a great reminder to me about how I should be thankful for everything...including the small stuff. He was talking about how we're so quick to complain and yet we often don't praise God or get joyful over "small" things. But reading that also sparked something else in my mind. I was thinking about something that Matt Wallace told me about the people of Russia and their mindset on dealing with problems and what they request from God...

Matt was talking to me one day at church camp about how in this country, we pray for God to heal us or take away pain and suffering. But the Russian mindset is that we should pray for perseverance. We have relied so much on God's omnipotence, that we've forgotten another part of the picture...and this is a very vital part. God uses things in our lives to build us up and to change us into the people He needs us to be in order to further His kingdom. But we always just rush for Him to take away whatever is causing suffering in our lives. Now, when God is taken out of the picture here, and we go through life's struggles without calling on God for help, I think it's much easier in our society for that to transform into complaining. We're not used to enduring pain...nor do we want to be. We're so fixed on immediate gratification, that when life throws a rock in our path, we complain instead of looking ahead at what we will become if we only learn what we can from our suffering.

I think we can learn so much from the Russians, in that we should not just be looking to God to bring back our comfort every time something, no matter how severe, comes up. They pray to be strong...to endure what has happened to them. This is the opposite of immediate gratification. They know that suffering will end, but they need God's help to get through it, not around it. But I think we should also pray for open eyes, so that through our perseverance, we don't just put our heads down and trudge on, creating bitter hearts and feelings. We need to raise our eyes and see the road that God has marked out for us and embrace the new person that develops after the trials.

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Let's see if you can do it...

New Environment...but I'm likin' it

So I just finished my first two days of school. The semester doesn't seem like it'll be too rough but you wouldn't guess that if you looked at the mountain of books I brought home today. Definitely gonna need a chiropractor this semester. It's all good though, I get excited by books. And I think my classes will be awesome this semester, we're covering a lot of good reads.

I'm also excited about Campus House at Eastern. I'm gonna start going to that with some girls I know. Super exciting! I will definitely need the encouragement I'll find there this semester. So, all in all, I think Eastern will be a good experience for me. This is my third and hopefully final college (undergrad anyway).

So there's not much more to tell right now, I'm sure there'll be a bunch later. I can feel it in the air. God's got something in the works and it's coming...and I'm really excited about it.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

I had a million dollars, but I spent it all.

Okay, so that's not true. Although, I wonder if we could add up all of the purchases that we've ever made in our lives, how much do you think that would come up to? Probably an embarassingly large amount.

So anyways, I actually went to prayer meeting/Bible study last night at church and it was great. I was definitely the youngest person in the room and I think the person next in line for that title still doubled my age. But it was really cool. I thought it was so interesting because they're going through the book of Genesis in detail and it's just really neat to hear everything they have to say about it. Seriously, there was so much knowledge in that room. So all you Trilla youth group members, go to church on Wednesday night! It's cool! I think that a lot of the youth could benefit a TON from being involved in group activities in the church that aren't segregated by age. But anyways...

I spent the entire morning trying to find a market to submit a feature I've written to. Didn't find one. Oh well, I'm still looking at where to go next. I feel really bad because I don't have a job. Poor Adam, I'm such a leech. I need to get on that really quick. Maybe I can handle a job with school, but I have a full load of English classes and they're all reading and writing intensive. But, we'll see. Adam's so great...he gives me so much freedom!! Ha!

So I guess I really don't have anything interesting to say other than don't stick your head down in the burn barrel to see if the match lit or not. Other than that splendid advice, I have nothing. Good day to you all.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Mass Production of DVDs and a Kick In the Side...

This will be a little random...so I'm just forewarning you all...

So I've been working on the Higher Ground DVDs...all of the editing is done!! Woo Hoo!! We're finally making a bunch of copies and getting them ready to sell. So if you're going to a Higher Ground concert soon, you might just have first dibs on these things. And let me tell you, a lot of work went into them.

Something that really hit me today was again pointing at my own laziness....sloth sloth go away...ya, and don't come back. But anyways, I was reading in Halley's Bible Handbook about the importance of Bible reading and one passage really stuck out to me. The author is saying that the attitude you have toward the Bible is a really big indicator of the attitude you have toward Christ. Ouch. Now, this may seem like a really simple concept, but I guess I just had one of those "AHA" moments when you finally get something that's been drilled into your head a million times. If I'm not diligent about reading God's word and I don't take it seriously, then how committed am I to following Christ. The author also mentions that if you love someone, you greatly enjoy reading about them and learning about things they've accomplished. Why do we find it so easy to profess our love for Christ, but yet not spend the crucial time we need in His word? I've also been thinking about how much time people (including myself) spend with "second-hand" information like different devotionals and stuff. Why not spend time with the greatest devotional ever made? God's word is our ultimate Truth and I've really been hit with that today!! I need to be disciplined!!!

Proverbs 30:5 - "Every word of God is pure; He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him."

Thursday, August 11, 2005

The Great Awakening...

I really hope you don't take one look at how long this is and just forget about reading it. Ha! It took awhile!!!! Ha!

Okay...so I've had a great wake-up call and BKK had a lot to do with it...

I think that one of the biggest things I've realized is how much time I'm wasting. God gives us all great gifts and talents and how many times do we let sloth take over and ruin great chances to take advantage of what we've been given? Well, that's what I'm coming to terms with. I feel like in the last week I've really been breaking down what I think my spiritual gifts are. And when I do this, I realize that I haven't really done anything to cultivate or share them. It's heartbreaking. Sometimes I even say no to God. How can I have the audacity to say that?

Well, I've talked about this before, about the self-esteem issue. I think that for me, it's just a cover up. When I say I'm not good enough to step out and do something or I think I will fail, it's really just a cover up for my pride. I'm not protecting myself because I think my self esteem is too frail, I just don't want to put my pride on the line. Ouch. But on the Thursday night of camp, when Katie Ramsey was talking about failing and doing it for God, it really hit me. He gives us all gifts and failure does not mean that we weren't meant to do the gift. "God cares more about our character than our comfort." I can't remember who said that...but it's so true. And Katie said that she was afraid to fail but if she did it, she would know that God was still on her side. That is so true and it's something that I need to realize. And even if I fail, that doesn't mean that I should give up. Like Alvin said, we have to keep getting up and going a little further. Romans 11:29 says "For the gifts and the calling of God are irrevocable." No one can take them away from you!!! So I need to step out and use what I've been given...we all do.

I'm sorry this will be so long but there's something else that I think is amazing about our calling from God...I shared this with my class at camp this week too...

At school I had sort of an epiphany...I'll give you the condensed version. But anyways...God has done so much to make each and every one of us...He has literally worked through the impossible or what seems to be impossible.

When you look at how much it took to create this earth and the conditions that needed to be necessary to sustain life...it seems impossible....the chances that there would not be life on this earth are astronomical...God created everything around us. And the chances that this would be here randomly...VERY UNLIKELY. And of all of this creation, we are His favorites. He spread the stars across the sky, He formed the mountains, He made everything...but we are His favorites. So humans are special to God, but it goes even deeper than that...

Each and every person is special to God...the odds that you would be the person you are seem to be incredibly unfavorable...I won't go into detail...I think we all know how conception works but just think of how many different variations there could be of people. If you have siblings...look at yourself compared to them, odds are you have differences and spiritual gifts that are not always the same. My point is, we are all truly chosen. No one is an accident...God deliberately created you. Jeremiah 1:5 says, "Before I formed you in the womb I knew you; Before you were born I sanctified you; I ordained you a prophet to the nations." He formed us, and he knew us beforehand. That's amazing to me.

So what I get from this, we are all called!!! We all have special gifts and there's no way to deny that!! God created you specially and there's no one like you!!! He has a plan for each and every person and He will never forget that!!! So use what you've been given!!! Sorry this is so long...

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

I think I'm going down...

For those of you who attended church camp...you have this picture...I just thought I would comment on it...What you're seeing here is my last moment of physical comfort at BKK, an instant later I was smashed to the ground by three very malicious boys landing simultaneously on my hip, shoulder, and head...OUCH!

I got over it though, girls are tough...and I went on to play the game! Ha!

All joking aside though, there's so much that I need to tell right now and I promise I'll do it soon. I just haven't got the time right now. God is so good and it would take a novel...actually more than one to tell of all the blessings He's given me...I'll tell more later. Hope you all have a great day.