Friday, February 11, 2011


Yesterday, I was reminded how God works in and through our lives. He recently sent me a new pen pal. What is cool about this new relationship is that the things I am going through, like graduating in May and waiting for my future husband, she can relate too. When we need encouragement God brings along the right person to do the encouraging. He also uses the things you've gone through to not only teach you something, but encourage others too. Don't miss opportunities to encourage someone else today. Who knows, they might be the one encouraging you tomorrow.

"Therefore encourage one another and build each other up..." 1Thessalonians 5:11

Jesus, encouraging others is not always easy.
Open my eyes to those around me who need to
be built up and speak through me.
I can't do it on my own.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

"This is the stuff that drives me crazy"

Yesterday was anything but normal. On my way to school it felt like I had run over something. Looking back in my mirror I didn't see anything in the road. The car didn't feel different, but there had been a pretty loud thud so I was worried whatever it was had hurt the car. I pulled into a nearby gas station and before I had gotten completely out of the car I saw it. A flat tire! My first. This is not counting the semi-flat tire I drove on for 45 minutes a few months ago. Nope this tire was shot. Dead. Finished. Thankfully I have an amazing dad who I can call anytime about anything. Fixing things is his forte. Plus he loves me. :) To make a long story shorter, my mom brought me a back-up vehicle so I could try to get to class while she waited for my SuperDad to fly in like a speeding bullet and change the flat tire. That was just the first crazy thing that happened that day.

I made it to campus just as class started. But I was still in the car, driving through each parking lot trying to find a parking space. Twenty minutes later, I found a space in a parking lot that seemed miles and miles away from the building my class was in. Let me just say that crossing campus, on foot, in the bitterly cold wind is not fun! Not being the kind of person who feels comfortable entering a class late, I sucked it up and snuck into Spanish class thirty minutes late. My professor greeted me wit ha hearty "Buenas dias!" and I embarrassingly and hurriedly slipped into a seat.

Sometimes I wonder why we experience these crazy life moments. But after yesterday I think I understand a little better. I've realized more and more that at the sign of a trial or hardship, no matter how small, I could use a lot more patience and perseverance. Like with my frustrations in my last post...I could do a lot less complaining and a lot more relying on God.

Francesca Battistelli says it perfectly in her new song "This is the Stuff"...

This is the stuff that drives me crazy
This is the stuff that's getting to me lately
In the middle of my little mess
I forget how big I'm blessed

This is the stuff that gets under my skin
But I gotta trust You know exactly what You're doing
It might not be what I would choose
But this is the stuff you use.

Thank you, Jesus, for using some frustrating
circumstances to teach me that I need to depend
on you more. Please "break me of impatience,
conquer my frustrations."
Remind me how much I'm blessed!

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Hold On

I don't know what is happening with this semester. Before it began I was excited about it. I was looking forward to my last four college classes, I was looking forward to graduating in May, and I was anticipating what God has for me as I looked towards life after college.

Christmas break seemed to end too quickly. I was unable to do a few things that would help me feel like I was starting anew for the spring semester and new year.

The third day of classes I came down with the flu. I missed a week of my classes. I felt like a wrench had been thrown into the workings of my semester.

When I finally returned to school I realized my classes weren't turning out to be as good as I had hoped. The English class (my last) was supposed to be full of inspiring literature and heart-felt discussions. Instead the reading assignments have taken over my study time (making me feel like I can't do any other studying), I've been reading essays by well-known authors who had a thought on every little minuscule thing and were gracious enough to write all those silly, and often selfish thoughts down so that I could sit spend a semester reading them.

Let's back up a minute, I became an English major because I love literature. I believe that you can learn something about yourself and the world around you when you read. Reading opens up other worlds to you, worlds not confined to this day and time. However, I've come to a point where I cannot find a balance between the things I believe as a child of God and the secular ideas I face everyday in my anthologies. Often the essays and stories I read are devoid of God. The essays I described above or wrought with selfish ideas about worldly pursuits. I've realized that there is often a small chance that I will read anything in my class that pushes me closer to the One who gave these author's the talent to write in the first place.

I've said all that to say this, I feel like I'm at a strange stage of my life and this stage comes with roller coaster-like emotions. Lately, what I know and how I feel are two different things entirely.

For instance, I know that God loves me and has a plan for me. I know that if I surrender my life to Him and follow His will He will direct my path. I know that He knows the desires of my heart and if I just wait upon Him He will fulfill those desires if they are in keeping with His will for my life.

Though I know all of these things, I feel anxious about the future. I feel unhappy with my circumstances. I feel ready to leave behind what I'm doing and go out and take my future into my own hands. I don't want to study, I don't want to serve, I don't feel like loving others. I don't want to wait anymore.

As you can tell, a war is raging within me. I can't win it on my own, I haven't a clue how. I can't win it with help from those around me, I don't even think I want their help. All I can do is hold on to what I know about the One who created me. All I can do is hold on to the promise that the One that is in me is greater than the one who is in the world. All I can do is take this life one day at a time, praying that God would answer this prayer:
"Turn my heart toward your statutes
and not towards selfish gain.
Turn my eyes away from worthless things;
preserve my life according to your word.
Fulfill your promise to your servant,
so that you may be feared."
Psalm 119:36-37

Jesus, please let what I know overpower
how I feel. I don't want to live by my
flimsy, fleeting, roller coaster emotions.
 I want to live by the promises you have given me.