Time for Adventure

Leaving your family is once thing that brings up mixed emotions. First comes relief from being out of a small house with a lotta people in it, but then a twinge of sadness because you know it will be a long time before you see them again.

As you get older, you begin to really know these people and appreciate the colors they are, how each displays a different facet of the family, but all together they represent the whole family. As I'm beginning to see this, I realize God's showing me how much he loves His people, how much He loves me, and how much I love these people.

My [many and very large] families have taught me a lot about adventure this year. Even those family members--the "daredevils" or whatnot. Despite the stupidity of their choices and the mistakes of others there's (even if they make some great stories) something to be said for their lifestyle. Life is an adventure, and life is meant to be lived. Now I feel like this is more than "Let's go bungee jumping off Mount Rushmore"--it's like everyday is an adventure. With everything I've been learning I'm being taught is prepared for this coming spring will be exciting and intense and adventurous. It's a daily thing sometimes...looking for the adventure that's already there in front of you. Especially when you're traveling with God--what's not an adventure then?



Changed My LIfe

All these songs about how when you met someone and they changed your life...I feel that they're all true sometimes because when you meet Jesus, and really get to know Him, your life looks different.

Everything I had (I being the key word) planned about my future or could see for myself is starting to look a lot different. More gray and fuzzy around the edges, like a baby bird's down feathers. Only hints and shadows of what's to come.

I've never been this content--no, happy--not knowing details or outlines of my future.

"Listen to advice and accept instruction, that you may gain wisdom for the future."
Proverbs 19:20


Everyday Strength

It's an everyday strength that I ask for...that I need....sometimes it's just being able to wake up in the mornings and go on with my day even when my past may haunt me and I'm bearing the effects of it in my every day life. Come on though, I know I'm not the only one who does this. Most mornings are normal, but there are just days when it's hard to get up. It's then that I ask for a different kind of strength, one used to face who I am, what I've done, and remember the grace that I've been given. I have to have an outside power that allows me to still hold my head up when to me the days look like a smudged shade of gray. An every-day kind of strength is my prayer, a prayer I need.

"He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak."
Isaiah 40:29
"The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song.  The LORD is the strength of his people, a fortress of salvation for his anointed one."
Psalm 28:7-8


'Tis the Season, 'Tis the Day

This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it!
Indeed the Lord has made this day. It's the day when we remember that if Jesus's birth, death and resurrection...everything He's done for us. He just loves so much...I can't even begin to thank Him for  everything that I have while I'm here on this earth.
I can't thank Him enough for holding me together.


Pain to Praise

When you're at that point, the one where everything is falling apart, everything you knew now looks like a lie.

We've all been there.

That's when you look up, above the waves, above the things of this world, past yourself and into the light of someone elses glory. God's amazing character, His steadfast personality and overwhelming love. It seems to be highlighted against the backdrop of our own sufferings.

This breaking point is exactly the time to praise. I know, so maybe it sounds crazy. Sing when you are trying to hold yourself together? I'm kinda busy, you say. You're missing the point, He replies, it's the time in the middle of the chaos in which you look up, breathe and let go.

To start it begins with just a thought, then a word or two, a sentence, next a chorus, then it transforms to a song--something that's just being pulled up from your throat, a sound of your heart. It's the sound of you breaking, your humanness and the goodness of God all tangled up inside of you. The colors of a fragmented prism are the shades of emotions you feel, but the bright glory your heart sings about overshadows everything else.

This is praise. All of you being offered, all of you thankful, rejoicing. The more you do it, the more you want to. Doing this is essential to your every day life, perspective and walk of faith. You have a million reasons to sing. Don't be caught silent.


No More Plastic Wrap

It has come to my attention that we are all covered in plastic wrap. In fact, we tend to wrap ourselves with it without knowing.

Plastic wrap is the stuff that you cover yourself with that lets people see who you are, but distorts what they see, all the while keeping people away from you--from getting in.

I feel like we sometimes do this subconsciously...it all stems from trying to please people. People, not God. When we do this, I feel like we all become like Peter when he took his eyes away from Jesus and instead rested them on the crashing, rolling waves. Since when have people become more important than God? If someone asked you that question, I'm sure that you'd say "No! Of course they aren't!" But it's not so cut and dry when you look at your life, now is it? Changing parts of you--outer and inner--exaggerating, stepping around the whole truth, flat out lying, ulterior motives, breaking your back for approval, building walls, taking the walls down prematurely, putting people on pedestals...

But this isn't how we are supposed to live. Who wants to live with those expectations of yourself for others anyway? It's no life! No life at all.
There's no freedom, no room to breathe.

No room to be yourself.

God did not create you to be somebody else! He takes what's there and transforms it. His unchanging grace and firm hand is more than enough to melt any solid heart, change any mindset, heal any hurt...He's so much bigger than people, so much bigger than you or who you think you are.


All These Expectations

So you go away for awhile, and undergo all this change in such a short period of time, then you come back.

The problem: you don't fit where you used to.
The habitual old routine, the same role, the regular people, the normal activities...it just doesn't work. Your perspective is different, you are different. To come back and be swept away in all of what was normal...you have close your eyes and remember who you are now--who you've become.
I guess I never realized how simple it would be just to slip back into how things were....how tempting...because it's safe, you know it and what to expect, you can do it....
I do know if I allowed myself to do that wouldn't feel the same--things may be the same...you aren't the same.

Anymore, I'm not exactly sure of what I'm getting myself into...or what I'm doing with myself. Maybe that's a good thing...I have to allow God to use me, all of me.

I want to be one of those people who is unapologetically themselves.  I want to be confident in myself, me and my decisions. I want to be confident that God's grace covers all my weaknesses and my mistakes, my failures and my short comings. All those conversations that didn't go that well, those times when I realize that I should have done something different....I have to believe that God is bigger than any trouble I can cause...He has to help my unbelief.
"Immediately the father of the child cried out, I believe! Help my unbelief!"
Mark 9:24


The Question to Ask

What does God want from me?

This is the question I asked myself while waiting at a stoplight the other day.
Hold on.
Wait just a minute.
That's not the right question to ask.

Don't I know that God wants all of me?

He did not sacrifice His only son just to have me ask such a question. Or give Him only certain parts of my life. I can not give Him just the money and school parts of our lives, but keep the dating, marriage and sports parts for ourselves and our control.

You see, I'm called to be all His. He made me, I am His child. His precious, precious child. Now I have to live like it.

"See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are."
1 John 3:1

"Again Jesus spoke to them saying, "I am the light f the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness but will have the light of life.'"
John 8:12

"I regard everything as loss because of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord."
Philippians 3:8


19 Years

Nineteen years isn't that long, but it's long enough to realize that I can't do anything on my own. Where would I be without the one who saved me? Where would I be without His love? I look back on all the sticky situations I've been in and He's been there--and God's been taking care of me the whole time. I've never seen anyone so BIG handle me with so much care and deliberateness. He works for the good of those who love Him, those called according to HIS purpose. With all that I am immeasurably blessed with, I can't even begin to say how much more important He is to me than anything else.

The Grace I'm Given

In this day and age, there are so many conflicting messages we are on the receiving end of. You are too much but not enough, be yourself--but not that version, you have to look this way but if you do this to get there, then you have problems. Statements like these cause some of the tear and wear that we experience through our daily lives, but believing them is when the real destruction comes.
It's times like these that you begin to understand the importance of really, truly, being yourself--the person God created you to be. You see, a lot of the time we don't understand how specific our purpose is, how we are one piece of a body working together for the Lord.
The more I begin to understand my faith, the more I begin to see how EPIC salvation really is and how much we really need the overflowing grace He gives. Looking back now, I had no idea what was in store for me when I said yes to Jesus. No idea. I mean, it just blows me away! My life seems to be a personification of transformation, if you know what I mean. Never before have seen someone so BIG work so gently on me. The care He takes as He breaks me, breaks me for Him...oh how much love! How much care! How much of Him.
"By the grace of God, I am what I am, his grace towards me has not been in vain."
1 Corinthians 15:10
If there was no such thing as grace, there would be no such thing as


My Grace is Sufficient #1

"...but he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in your weakness.' So I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. Therefore I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions and calamities for the sake of Christ; for whenever I am weak I am strong." 
2 Corinthians 12:9-10
This is one of my favorite verses, so much so in fact I painted it on my wall. The thing is though, it's been popping up everywhere it seems like....even overseas. Since this verse gets around, I decided to investigate its meaning when personally applied to peoples lives.
Don't read the rest of this if you don't have time to sit down, read, think and reflect. It'll actually be a series of posts because I have been asking so many people for responses. Take some time out of your day to really read them and examine your heart about this issue. After reading them, I hope you can identify with some of the responses and can draw up an answer of your own. Let me know what you think if you want, or have an answer too.

"Your weaknesses and hardships make you stronger, which gives you a greater insight of God's love and why you need him your life. I have realized this based on personal experience because at times I have felt so alone because of my flaws, but then I realized God was all I needed, and the rest is sure to come."

"It means that we can rejoice when we are weak! It frees me from complaining about my weaknesses and my problems and gives me something to rejoice about. We can rejoice because we know Jesus is using our weaknesses to draw us closer to Him, and that is definitely cause for rejoicing! So every day when I am walking through life and somebody says something rude to me, or I'm having difficulty with school, or I get sick, I know that through those trials and problems, Jesus is drawing me closer to Himself. He turns my complaints into songs of joy!"

"He uses our weakness that we might not boast in ourselves. If it were out strength, then glory would be credited to the person. But it's our weakness, so the credit goes to God. Take Moses for instance--he stuttered and he himself claimed that as his weakness. He argued with God, saying there was no way the people would follow him because of that. But people did follow--obviously it wasn't due to Moses' great speaking abilities, so Moses cannot boast in his ability to gain a large following. This has been a rock for me with my hearing impairment/vision loss--God has used those very weaknesses to bring him glory and he is the only explanation for the things I've been able to do."

"I've had a lot of times where I've been weak in these past few months. Or perhaps I was always weak, but I just didn't see it. God is stripping me of my pride and all the masks that I wore (though I still have a lot of pride that needs more of me dying to myself) and making me nothing. I guess that we can only be something once we've been made weak and almost nothing at all. It's terrible but it takes hardships and sufferings to lead me fully to the God of the universe. And even then I don't follow Him fully. Sufferings and hardships make my sinful flesh scream in pain and in terror. But my heart runs to Jesus and in Him, even during those times of suffering, I find that His grace IS sufficient  and that He IS enough. In fact He's more than enough. My flesh might be rejecting the hardships but my soul welcomes them. Because even in insults, in my weakness, in calamities and in times where everything is spinning out of control I can find that He is more than I could ever want or imagine." 

"It means to me that I don't have to be perfect. I don't have to strive for my standards or anyone else's. Just God's. He even goes further than that--He transforms my weaknesses into good things for Him through His grace. I am getting more and more to the point to where I can say 'Thank you Lord, for I am weak and can't do this alone. you know and hold my purpose, you are the one who makes me beautiful despite my flaws.'"



Idleness. This is what I was thinking about while reading Proverbs 6. It may not have been exactly what it was talking about, at all really, but I just couldn't get the thought out of my head. Since it's break, my days of sleeping in and doing nothing are over. I've got to get up and get stuff done. A lot of this is prepping me for the next phase of my life--teaching. I don't know where it come from, but these last few months I've been learning so much, I just have a burden for teaching it now--one step further than just telling people about it. Normally I would say that this is weird, but because my life looks so different now, it kinda fits in with the rest of it. Everything looks different now--being home and suddenly being taken out of an environment you just got used to. Back at school so much was going on it was an easier to be in a mindset of trusting God on a daily basis, and now I'm still busy but my routine is basically nonexistent. The whole thing  really is so confusing.  So I guess my blog posts may be changing, just like me, just like they always have been....just like me.


What I Want

Steadfast--something unwavering, dutifully firm.

What I want now is a steadfast heart. Something that clings to His light and walks towards my Lord and embraces my God-designed purpose. My prayer now is Psalms 51:10: "Create in me a clean heart O God, and put a new and steadfast spirit within me," and my reason, Psalms 63:3: "Because your steadfast love is better than life".

Look at Psalms 136. Read it all. You see the format? Well, take out a piece of paper and number it one to ten.  On the odds, write down those looming uncertainties. Something about you, or about your life--just whatever you're going through right now. Or maybe a piece of your past that's scary to recall. I know one of mine is that I worry I don't listen enough. On all the even number lines, write "for His steadfast love endures forever". Reread this list until it becomes real to you. Until you get it through your head that His love overshadows ever problem and prayer on your list and how much He loves you.

Now, I know some of you don't have  piece of paper in your hand right now because you are too much like me--read what they want you to write and then say to yourself "Well I don't have to do it because I understand the concept." No. That doesn't fly. GO get some paper. Even I got some paper. And a pen. Don't forget a pen.

How He Loves
David Crowder


Never Once

Never once did we ever walk alone, never once did he leave us on our own.

I think we forget this way too often. We get so immediately consumed and swallowed by our troubles it becomes hard to keep our eyes above the crashing waves.

Throughout this semester, through all the transition, all the roommates, all the change and the hurt and the regression, the fear, the tears and pain, the having nothing, the uncertainty, and the crushed hopes.....

The thing is, God was there with me. He was there even before move-in day (1 Corinthians 10:13, Psalms 18:6, 2 Corinthians 7:24) and He was already standing by my side as the next few days would change my life completely....never once would He ever let us walk on our own (I mean, we all know how that turns out, right?). He was steadfast and faithful, standing next to me, holding my hand while I began to look to Him during a time filled with tall shadows.

Away from everything I had once again, I began to see what it was like to really need. To need something that this world couldn't give me. Something bigger, a daily issue of the soul and heart.

The results of finding (how sweet a word!) after seeking so desperately? Uncontainable joy, and this peace that is an undercurrent in all things. It's something that causes you to keep your head up when your heart feels lost.

With these tangible realizations, I began to see how much it is a choice to surrender, and how much faith it takes. But when you give God yourself, oh the victory He makes of it (2 Corinthians 2:14)! The victory that He gives us is His power in us (2 Cor. 12:9-10). Sure the cost is high, it may even cost you irreplaceable things that have so much value to you. But you see, God is not a God of replacing, He is a God of completely transforming. He uses you as you are.

Everyone is talking and recapping about tests, friends, the end of semester and break and such but how many people can say that they fell completely in love with God this semester? I mean, head over heals (Psalms 63:1). Overall, God has changed my heart and renewed my soul so that I am a burning fire just for Him (Psalms 18:1, 34: 4-6, 51:10-12, 63:3, 73:25-26, 105:31-32). This rekindled love for Him is my favorite part about waking up in the mornings, and now Psalms 73:25-26 is my praise and prayer. I realize now I'm not (and never was) my own, I belong to Him alone (1 Corinthians 6:19). The thing is, I finally know what it is to hate everything else compared to how much you love your Lord (Luke 14:26).

My only hope is that my desire and love for my Lord is multiplied TEN TIMES every year, every semester, every month and every day after that.

My Friend Lauren


Lauren and I have been best friends since fifth grade. That long. We've been through the awkward stages of life, joys and loud laughs, multiple moves, changing people and families, times of complete despair, hoping and praying, a few moments of fear, and ultimately a growing faith. I cannot even begin to articulate how much Lauren means to me, she's probably one of the few people that know me best, the one person who I feel really understands the depths of me when I don't even feel like I know myself. I even feel like I know her better than she does sometimes.

We've had good time and bad times and we are so close, awkward moments only happen occasionally. That's pretty close. It's been amazing to see how our friendship has survived moving multiple hours away multiple times, families changing and now going to different schools but existing in the same town and still just being able to pick up where we left off. That is a work of God.

 Her growing faith is the prettiest thing about her, along with her laugh. I am so thankful that she's there for me and cares for so many things that she does. I love her, I love her family and I love our friendship.

Thank you Lauren.


Anything Else

Looking at what my life has become, and with winter break coming up, I realize that I don't want to miss anything else. Or what I really mean is that I don't want to miss parts of people's lives. I can't afford to miss that--life is too short, wayyyy too short. I know I'm going to miss the people, the community, how easy it is to go over and see someone and how when you say "living life together" actually means seeing them in the bathroom several times a day.

But breaks come for a reason, for you to rest and restore. The thought of break comes a bit of fear, but so much more excitement and zeal for life and the Lord. With all the new things that I've learned and experienced, I get to put them into practice. And continue praying with a right and steadfast heart. Now's the time to learn how to live with and love people, your community and most of all, Christ.

As much as I hate to say it, it's actually a good thing I won't have so much access to coffee too.



Satisfy. That's what I'm learning that He does and all I ever need is His love.

Your love is all I need to live

Satisfy me, Lord, oh
Satisfy me, Lord, oh
Yeah I'm begging You to help me see
You're all I want, You're what I need
Oh satisfy me, Lord

Tenth Avenue North

It may seem like some of my blog posts are slightly bipolar, which they kind of are. I think I've said mentioned that before. But anyway, I've been doing some thinking and working through things and I just am realizing that God is changing my priorities. I never realized that they could be so specific to each person, or that I ever had them in the wrong order. Or how much He would change them. I'm also starting to see how your priorities are lined up has a lot to do with your purpose in life, your you and your future.

He's also reminded me that He's bigger than my circumstances. I know we say this a lot, but it's true. He's consistent when we ourselves along with our world are not. I mean, He's got such a bigger picture and plan in mind......it doesn't matter what we go through........He gave His son for us, nothing we can do really even compares. He satisfies.



I don't have any more strength.

                                                       And that's exactly where He wants me.

All these trials, all these events....maybe that's exactly why I'm going through them, and so many others...to be exactly where He wants me to be. It's moments like these, in the midst of understanding--again--how many times I just don't work. I'm reminded that I can look at my Savior's face and feel like the most beautiful person in the world just because He's in me!

Sometimes it's so hard though, to draw up that courage, that strength to even get through your day. Especially when it's long, oh so long...and you are faced with the same problem over and over and over and you ask God "What are you doing?" and you don't know. You don't know. At all. And it's been happening a lot. Why? What for? What am I missing? I just want what He wants for me....I guess it's just getting there. But I'm so tired. My heart feels sick sometimes from it all. I want to just be able so lean back in His embrace and just release the tension and anger and bad attitude that shake me so much. The thing is, I know in my heart and my head that He's doing something amazing. When you surrender our life and let Him be your king, this is part of what's coming. It's not easy, just worth it. I can not wait until I am already on the other side of this trial to find the joy on His face, to be so far gone, to be lost in Him.

"For this slight and momentary affliction is preparing us for an eternal weight of glory that is beyond measure."
2 Corinthians 4:17



One of my favorite things is when God does something that reminds you the He’s bigger than ANYTHING. In the midst of all the sadness, there’s always something moving, something going on…you just have to pray and watch. Pray, watch, wait, believe and expect.


Identiy Crisis

I want God to show me what it looks like to have my identity in Him.

I want to see what it looks like. I see it in certain people, but it looks different for everyone. Even more than seeing, I want to be like what it is to have my identity in Him.

I feel like I'm re-learning everything, things like this. I didn't know what having all of who you are could look like until I was/am in a situation where I have nothing left that is truly me.

The thing is, not knowing my identity isn't a crisis. It's really not. It's an opportunity for God to work in me and recreate me to be who He's made me to be so I can full fill His purpose.

"There is nothing on earth I desire other than you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever."
Psalms 73:25-26

But I want to love You more
I need You God
But I want to need You more

I'm lost without
Your creative spark in me
I'm dead inside
Unless Your resurrection sings

I'm desperate for a desperate heart
I'm reaching out, I'm reaching

All that I am is dry bones
Without You Lord, a desert soul
I am broken but running
Towards You God, You make me whole

You are exactly what we need
Only You can satisfy



It's kinda funny to see how every thing comes together some days. How way back in the beginning of the day you ask for something--you pray, you realize, you think. By the time the night falls all the things you've forgotten throughout the day you get to see come to life. Prayers answered. Life lived. And so many blessings bestowed, you can't help but praise the King. Sometimes things just circle around, and it's so neat to see how God has His hand in so many things, everything. His glory is boundless.

"Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds, your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, your judgments are like the great deep; you save humans and animals alike."
Psalms 36:5-6

"In you O Lord, I take refuge; let me never be put to shame. In your righteousness deliver me and rescue me; incline your ear to me and save me. Be to me a rock of refuge, a strong fortress, to save me, for you are my rock and my fortress."
Psalm 71:1-3


All of Me, All of Him

Sometimes I just get SO mad. Why? Because there is too much of myself in me. Too much. All the time. All over the place.

Where's God? Why can't I seem to scoot over and let Him reign?

I. Just. Can't. Do it sometimes. It's a control issue. And it drives. Me. Nuts.

Here's all this progress, here's all this struggle, then for what? Me to get distracted and worry about everyone else, and how they view me? Is my transformation so easily destroyed? I thought it was supposed to stay!

And it doesn't even matter about the progress sometimes--just that I cling to God. I just get in my way all of the time! How am I supposed to go about ridding me of myself, my sinful flesh? It tears and bites and comes back toward me every time I push it away. The more I realize my need for God, the more I see the destruction my flesh causes, how it's not good for me or other people, much less pleasing and glorifying to God. It's almost like the way I see things now is in high contrast mode. The only reason I appear a cleansing white is because I have the Spirit in me. The more I begin to see the bigger picture, the more it seems to all come back to salvation.

"I want to know Christ and the power of his resurrection and the sharing of his sufferings by becoming like him in his death, if somehow I may attain the resurrection from the dead."
Philippians 3:10

"...for it is God who is at work in you, enabling you both to will and work for his good pleasure." Philippians 2:13

"Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility regard others as better than yourselves."
Philippians 2:3

"Christ...emptied himself, taking the form of a slave...humbled himself and became obedient to the point of death--even death on a cross."
Philippians 2:6-8


What NOT to do at Christmas


Truth: Nobody wants them. They really don't want them. Really. There are too many and people are trying to loose weight anyway. So forget it and get them an ornament, gift card or candle! Most people anymore just want some of your time, not any last minute gifts.

NO ONE should hate you if you don't get them a gift. So stop worrying, relax and actually have fun at the Christmas parties you go to. Practice your time management BEFORE Christmas comes around. Please. It's just common sense. I really have to eat my words on this one.

No. If you really loved them, you'd get them a Christmas gift in July just because. The obliged feeling just creates stress for you, which the other person wouldn't want you to go through. And guys, it's just a gift, not the only thing your friendship depends on.

I'm not saying that all people who go Black Friday shopping are ungrateful, but it makes me wonder if you leave your family early. Then again, knowing some families....ah, never mind...

Some people will point out the "giving" in Thanksgiving, but giving a part of yourself, investing in others, and giving your time is more precious than ANYTHING ELSE you can give.
Too bad I posted this after Thanksgiving....

It's No. Big. Deal. It is what it is. Christmas. Nobody can stop that just by not saying it.

Home for Now

It's really good to be back. I never considered the fact that God would give me another home. With as much moving as I've done, a house is a house and home is where you feel comfortable. I have many home-away-from-homes, and WKU is one of them. In the beginning, I never ever really thought that I would understand the college version of this concept. Another realization that is added onto the list of ways God takes care of me and uses bad circumstances for His glory.

And the thing about homes is that you may have different ones at different times--they move and change and develop almost as much as you do. Which is okay, it's fine. Especially when you know that it's all about God's timing.