Monday, December 30, 2013

Twenty-Three

Last year, I set twenty-three goals for my twenty-third birthday.  I know you're wondering how I've done. 

1. Finish my last twelve classes at Liberty University Online with a bang
I did it!  I successfully finished my last semester at Liberty University with a bang.  I got all A's and B's and a college diploma.

2. Start grad school or seminary
I did it!  I'm at Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary!

3. Make and maintain a budget
I could have done a little better at this!  I went through phases of being on budget and not and then getting back on track.

4. Run two 5k's
I could have done a little better at this!

5. Live in the moment
This wasn't the easiest.  I am always looking forward to what is next, but I think that I often lived in the moment often.  When I wasn't living in the moment, I recognized how consumed in what was coming or what had come

 6. Read the entire New Testament
Oh no! I completely forgot about this!

7. De-stress
I can't say I did so well with this one.  Seminary hasn't been easy.

 8. Visit a new state (I have 44 to choose from)
Success!  I visited Alabama, Mississippi, Louisiana, and I now live in Texas!

 9. Learn to check my email and social media sites no more than three times a day
Mercy, I forgot about this one, too!

 10. Lose and keep off twenty-three pounds
Darn!  That was not a success.

 11. Read ten books for leisure
This year I read eight books.  I set a goal for ten and read eight.  I would say that is a success.  I would highly recommend Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg and The Single Woman by Mandy Hale.  My year was different because of these books.
 
 12. Take pictures regularly
I may have annoyed everyone around me, but I take pictures more than regularly! 

                             
          

 13. Laugh until I cry
Yes!  Thank goodness for great friends.  I was laughing until I cried regularly. 

14. Spend the weekend in Aiken
Right before I went from North Carolina to Texas, I spent the weekend in Aiken.  It was great.  I went canoeing with my middle brother, pretended to be a tourist in our hometown's "downtown", went to the movies with both of my brothers, and stayed up late sipping tea with my grandma.



15. Create opportunities for God to move mightily
If #NCtoTX wasn't one of the greatest opportunities for God to move mightily in my life, I can't tell you what was.

16. Learn to white water kayak
Texas does not have many places to white water kayak, so this was not a goal I was able to achieve.

17. Spend some QT with Victoria before she moves
 I am so thankful that I was able to drive down and watch my best friend walk across the stage.  She was also able to come up for the weekend and explore Charlotte with me.  We had a great time! 
 
                        


18. Follow God's lead
Again, #NCtoTX... Right?!  And, there were several other moments this year where God called me to go against the grain and I did.  I've felt His confirmation when needed and I know He is proud of me for following His lead even when other options would be easier.

19. Have enough faith to believe that God can make my Sun Stand Still prayer come true
Still believing.

20. Visit Charleston at least twice
It is one of my biggest regrets that I did not make it to Charleston at all this year.

21. Get my second tattoo
After I finally figured out what I wanted for my second tattoo, I never had the time or money to get it done.  The time will come!

22. Find time for me once a week
I was doing really great at this prior to moving, then I got terrible.  When I noticed my mood was changing because I wasn't spending time with myself, I made sure to make time for myself weekly. 

23. Live a life that glorifies God at all moments
I cannot honestly say that every single moment of 2013 glorified God.  There were moments when I lost my temper, said something harsh and misused resources (time... money... etc.) that God gave me.  But, I think what glorifies God in those moments is recognizing that I made a poor choice and immediately deciding to stop making the poor choice.

Monday, December 2, 2013

HBD to Me!


For those of you who do not know me outside of the blogesphere, today is my birthday!  I'm twenty-four years old young today.  I would consider my birthday to be as significant as any major holiday, and I celebrate it as if it is.  Birthday's are my favorite, in general.  I will celebrate anyone's birthday, and my heart truly breaks when I forget someone's birthday.  I never want to be so busy that I forget to wish someone a proper "Happy Birthday."  "Happy Birthday" on your facebook isn't enough.  I will pull up share worthy pictures of us... good and bad... and tell the world how marvelous you are!  Birthdays are the best.



Well, I may have gotten a little off track there.  I just really love birthdays.  The real reason for this post is to say thank you.  I woke up this morning with a thankful heart.  I have so much to be thankful for this season.  But, what I am most thankful for today is my parents. 

I am thankful for the gift of life.  I am thankful to have an amazing mother who chose to give me life at sixteen.  I am thankful to have a strong mother who always provided for me, no matter how hard.  I am thankful to have a father that chose to be in my life.  I am thankful to have parents who always push me to give my best.  I am thankful to have parents who grounded me.  (What a lesson it was to learn to be thankful for my parents grounding me!  I wish I would have learned it a little sooner.)  I am thankful to have parents who believe in me.  I am thankful to have parents who want nothing more than for me to have a happy life.

I am truly blessed to have such amazing parents.  Though, they think my love for birthdays at age 24 is outlandish, they still love me unconditionally.  I am so incredibly thankful for the gift of life that my mom gave me twenty-four years ago! 

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Thankful Thursday



It's that time of year!  That time of year when we are more thankful than usual, posting daily about what we are thankful for on social media and when we forget a few days, we play catch up on one post.  That time of year when it's acceptable to eat until we can't keep our pants buttoned anymore.  That time of year when we tolerate family we wouldn't normally tolerate.  It's Thanksgiving!

I have so much to be thankful for.  I will not scratch the surface at all that I am thankful for in one post.


I am thankful for...

... my God.  I would not have applied to SWBTS if it weren't for God.  I wouldn't have moved to Texas upon acceptance to SWBTS.  I would not have believed that I would be provided for upon moving to Texas.  Nothing over the past year would have looked the same if God were not in my life.  I am so thankful for a God who never gives up on me, never stops forgiving and has plans for me greater than I could ever imagine.  I am thankful for a God who would choose me to do such great things.

... my wonderful family.  They have supported me moving to Texas in every way I needed support.  They support every decision I make.  When I come home after being away for four months, they welcome me with open arms and eyes filled with tears.  Being away for four months changes nothing, we still laugh with each other, laugh at each other, and have fun doing whatever we are doing.  They encourage me.  They believe in me.  They love me.  My family is fabulous!

... my Elevation Church family.  When moving to Texas, I left behind an amazing support system of elevators.  One of my biggest fears was losing friendships that meant the world to me.  But, over the last four months, I've had the opportunity to learn that 1,000 miles can't separate the friendships I've made at Elevation.  They encourage me when I'm struggling, they call me to catch up, and they send me snail mail! 

... my LifeChurch family.  When moving to Texas, I was terrified of how hard it would be to find a church, how hard it would be to make friends, and what getting involved in church would look like at a new church.  LifeChurch.TV at Fort Worth welcomed me with open arms from day one.  They made making LifeChurch my home one of the easiest decisions I've ever made.  I'm so thankful for the fabulous group of friends I've made through LifeKids and my LifeGroup.

... my SWBTS family.  When moving to Texas, I had no idea what to expect.  I was leaving behind wonderful friendships, and fairly sure that I would never find as great of friends.  Things haven't always been easy at SWBTS, but I am incredibly thankful for the group of friends that I have made at school.

... new opportunities.  In the past year, I applied for a school over 1,000 miles away from my family, was accepted into seminary, stepped down after over three years of serving at Elevation Church, quit my job without knowing what was next, was blessed by my family offering me a job that is flexible and allows me to focus on school, moved halfway across the country, graduated college, began my first semester at seminary, found LifeChurch.TV, made an amazing group of friends at school, was able to fly home just when I was getting unbearably homesick, and so so much more.  There have been more new opportunities in the past twelve months than I've had in my entire life.  I've been stretched mentally, emotionally and spiritually.  I've had to step outside of my comfort zone.  But, it's been an incredible year. 




... what is to come.  There is no way for me to know what will come of the week to come, months to come and years to come.  I am certain that the weeks and months and years to come will be fabulous.  They will have moments of great struggles and great triumphs.  I will eagerly await those moments, both enjoyable and not so enjoyable.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Thankful Tuesday: #NCtoTX Edition

I have so much to be thankful for in this season.  I have to stop and thank those who played a key part in #NCtoTX.  So, I present to you... #NCtoTX Edition of Thankful Tuesday!
 
 
... Moving in and unpacking would not have gone as smoothly as it did with out the help of my amazing family.  I am so incredibly thankful that my parents and brother took the trek from North Carolina to Texas with me.  I know how much of a sacrifice it was for them... taking off of work, paying for food and hotels, and purchasing plane tickets home for three.  I can not adequately express my gratitude toward them for making the sacrifice and being such a vital part of this journey.  I could not have done it without them.  Everything happened so smoothly... the truck was unloaded in record time, within three days all of my boxes were unpacked and before the week was over, all my pictures were hung on the wall and it felt like home!
 
 
... The countless people who knew just when I needed a dose of encouragement.  The perfectly timed phone calls, cards, texts, emails, facebook messages, tweets and snapchats were so important to this journey.  I would not have had the fuel that I had in low places to press forward without those who encouraged me along the way.  Deciding to make this journey was a daily decision and I have some amazing people on my side believing in me to do great things.



... The incredible people who helped me in a time of need.  Not working for over a month, but still having to pay to rent a truck, hotels for three nights, food and gas could have been a huge struggle.  Thanks to the amazing people who heard my unspoken need, finances were the least of my worries on this journey.  I had some really generous graduation gifts which went into savings for a cushion post move.  I picked up babysitting and dog/house sitting jobs when and wherever possible.  After moving out of my apartment, I never went without a place to sleep!  I picked up babysitting jobs here and there.



... To everyone who prayed for me, thought of me, put good energy out, and sent good thoughts my way, thank you.  To everyone who sent me off with love and well wishes, thank you!  To everyone who believed in me even when I didn't believe in myself, thank you!  To everyone who knew that Texas was a done deal before it was a consideration in my mind, thank you.  To everyone who helped me along the way, thank you.  To everyone who has been a part of this journey, thank you.  Thank you, everyone!  I am the most blessed a woman can be!

Friday, August 9, 2013

#NCtoTX Actually Happens

Friday, July 19th, 2013... My parents, my baby brother and I woke up early and headed to the nearest Penske rental place.  We picked up the truck and drove to the storage unit.  In extremely hot and humid weather, empty stomachs and no hydration we strategically packed up the truck.  Water and some breakfast would have been a smart move, but nerves were high and we weren't thinking clearly.
 
Saturday, July 20th, 2013... We filled our tanks up with gas, filled our coolers up with ice, filled our bellies up with breakfast and started day one of a three day trip from Charlotte, North Carolina to Fort Worth, Texas.  This day started out to a rough start.  Thirty minutes into the trip, my brother realized he forgot his license... a vital part of his flight home.  My mom and I turned around.  Turning around and Charlotte traffic put my mom and I an hour behind my dad and brother.
 
 
We drove through South Carolina with ease.  Georgia was not as kind to us.  The traffic in Atlanta was everything I imagined it to be.  Somehow or another, my dad and brother made it through Atlanta before the traffic.  My mom and I got another hour behind in Atlanta.  Saturday night, we spent the night in Birmingham, Alabama.

 
 
 

Sunday, July 21st, 2013, we got back on the road.  I am overly competitive, hate loosing and have a need for speed.  Travelling with two cars made this quite a trip for me.  Saturday started our journey off to a rough start, getting in after the truck and all... Sunday, I was determined to make it to Louisiana before my dad and brother.  My mom and I peeled out of the parking lot before the GPS had made us a route. 




 
 
 
The drive through Alabama, Mississippi and Louisiana was           L O N G.  There was a lot of large green pastures!  We did pass over the Mississippi River!  Louisiana's open roads brought realization that impromptu mother-daughter mani/pedi's, dinner dates and shopping trips were going to be few and far between, and not so impromptu anymore made my mom and I cry.




Monday, July 22nd, 2013... The day that I had been counting down for months, the day that I had been praying about for months, the day that I moved into my apartment on the campus of Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary.  Texas heat does not play!  And, it showed no mercy to us on move in day. 




Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Fears, Doubts and Details

The week or so leading up to July 20th, I was an emotional wreck.  I have always tried my hardest to keep it together.  I have this (incorrect) idea that I have to always appear picture perfect to those around me.  The only time for tears or fear is alone.  I've felt this even more than ever recently, as I have made this big deal about following God's lead. 

As moving day became closer and closer, I developed this false idea that I could not be scared of what was ahead or doubt the decision I had made.  I was making this bold step in faith and I felt like a lot of people were watching this.  I wanted to make all of those people proud.  I feared that they would not be proud if I was scared.  I feared that they would not be encouraged to step out in faith if I doubted my decision. 

I say all of that in the past tense, but I realize as I write those words, it is still I very real notion inside of me... the idea that I cannot be scared for the sake of those watching this journey of mine. 

I would never lie to you, so I have to be completely honest.  There were moments leading up to July 20th that I was scared... scared that I had forgotten a major detail and scared that I would forget to pack something essential.  There were moments leading up to July 20th that I doubted my decision... what if I was wrong about God calling me to Texas, what if God didn't meet me in Texas, what if I hated it, there was a lot of doubt on my mind.

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow,
for tomorrow will worry about itself.
Matthew 6:34


Leading up to July 20th was a whirlwind of emotion, but it wasn't all bad.  God revealed Himself to me time and time again.  Despite being terrible at budgeting and not having a job the last month and a half that I was in Texas, I had enough money to make the trip from North Carolina to Texas happen.  My family and friends were such a blessing to me.  Everyone was overly generous; opening their homes to me when I didn't have a place to sleep, feeding me, letting me dog, house and baby sit, and encouraging me when my doubts crept in!

So do not fear, for I am with you;
do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you and help you;
I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10

A friend of mine recently told me that God is in the details.  The moments that I silenced my fears and doubts were the moments that I had the opportunity to see God in the details of my life.  He was truly moving in every area of my life.


Today, I've linked up with the following wonderful blogs!
Wise-Woman-Builds

Monday, August 5, 2013

M.I.A No More!

I've been on quite a crazy ride over the last few months.  I haven't been so great at keeping you in the loop, so let me give you a quick run down.

Last summer, I began looking at seminary's.  Grad school had been on my mind for years.  It was one of those unattainable dreams that you have as a kid.  Until, one day... it became attainable.  I was entering my senior year of college and grad school seemed like the most logical next step.  Sometime around November, I began dedicating time to looking into schools. 

The long version of this can be found on my Why Texas post.  But just in case a quick re-cap is all you are looking for, here ya go...

In November, God said that I should go to this seminary in Fort Worth, Texas. I kind of thought that He was crazy, and gave Him three reasons I couldn't do it.  He quickly squashed all of my reasons and I began to consider SWBTS as an option.  In January, I spent a day with my best friend.  She really challenged me.  And, on my drive home, I committed to following God's lead.  In March, I applied to Southwestern and I was accepted in April.  In May, I told my parents and in June, I told the world.  Finally, in July... I packed up all of my stuff in a Penske truck and drove over 1,000 miles from North Carolina to Texas!

That's where we pick up!!  On social media, I so aptly named this journey #NCtoTX.  This week, I'll be blogging about all things #NCtoTX... the emotions leading up to the journey, the three day journey and where my head and heart are now.  It's going to be a great week!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

My Praise Breaks

Early this week I wrote about what these "praise breaks" I've been tweeting about are.  Today, I wanted to write a little more about these praise breaks.

We've all had moments, days, seasons of overwhelming stress.  Those moments when you are following God, but it's scary.  Those moments when you are asking God for something, but He doesn't seem to be listening.  Those moments when you feel like God's presence has left you.  You are alone, I promise.

The closer you follow God, the harder the walk with gets.  If anyone promised you that this walk was going to be easy, they were lying.  Satan's job is to make us doubt God.  I'd even go as far as to say that if Satan isn't hassling you, you aren't going the right direction. 

I have had a lot on my plate lately.  I have been remembering a time that I feel like God didn't meet me at the end of a road He called me to take.  It has really made me question my decision to move to Texas.  I'm confident that God has called me there, but what if He does not meet me there again?  When I take those thoughts a little too far, I stop to remember His faithfulness.  I have a praise break, sometimes long and sometimes short.  I just remind myself of how good He is.  He has a plan for me in Texas.

Satan knows that God is going to do something huge in and through me in Texas.  If I make this move, God wins.  Satan is doing everything in his power to keep me from making that move.  I will not allow Satan to have any room in my life.  I want God to get all the glory.

Take praise breaks often. Refocus your mind on why you are doing what you are doing.  God is still good in your struggle.  Don't allow Satan to have any room to in your life.  Press forward when things get tough.

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Praise Break

If you follow me on twitter, you have probably seen several tweets recently about praise breaks.  I wanted to take a moment to talk about what these little praise breaks are all about. (Side note... if you don't follow me on twitter... why?!  Click here and follow me on twitter, now! You won't regret it!)

Several months ago, Pastor Jentzen Franklin came to Elevation Church to speak to the leaders of Elevation.  He spoke about worship.  I really enjoyed his message and it's something that I rethink often.  He talked about the worship of the angels.

Just to catch you up to speed... Lucifer is Satan, the fallen angel. He was originally a mighty angelic angel, who got to be in God's presence every moment.  One day his thought shifted from worshipping God to imagining people worshipping him like he worshipped God. 

You see, even Lucifer and the demons worship God.  James 2:19 says, "You believe that there is one God? Good!  Even the demons believe that- and shudder."  Demons believe, fear and worship God.  How much more should we worship God?

Franklin said two really powerful things that have stuck with me for over six months.  When Satan brings up your past, it is because He is running out of new material.  We get to choose to praise and worship. 

Make the right choice.  Choose to worship... During his sermon, we kept having praise breaks.  We'd just get up and praise God.  I was balling my eyes out.  You could truly feel God's presence with us.  Those times that it is hardest to worship, or the defining moments of your walk.  Will you still worship when the going gets tough?



Wednesday, June 19, 2013

My Passion

Earlier this week, I wrote about passion.  I talked about how everyone needs to be passionate about something.  We can't sit back and let life pass us by.  Today, I'm going to get personal about my something.

My something is the lack of woman in ministry.  As I'm moving along in my theology courses, I'm finding a terrifying trend... It's believed that woman serving in a leadership position in a church is unbiblical.  That is supposed to be a place for a man. The woman's place is at home making babies and cooking dinner.  This makes my blood boil.  This makes me go on a tangent.  This makes me loose it.

I believe as long as you are doing what God has called you to do, you are in the right position.  This looks different for everyone, and no one person is doing the wrong thing even if it looks different from someone else.  Before you read further, please know that I think that woman who stay at home, make babies and cook dinner are wonderful people, and as long as you are doing what God has called you to do, you are in the right place!!

I think it is terribly sexist to believe that woman can't serve in a leadership position at a church.  I believe that something needs to be changed.  God has called me to work in full-time ministry.  I'm beginning to be slapped with the realization, that I may run into a lot of closed doors, a lot of churches who have this backwards sort of mindset. 

I want to be a part of this change.  I want to inspire women to step up and let God use them greatly.  It may mean staying at home and changing the lives of those around you.  It may mean working in the corporate world and changing lives there.  Allowing God to use you greatly looks different for everyone.  I think we all need to live up to this full potential.  Woman, more than ever.  Let's stop sitting back and letting our husbands get all of the credit.

Monday, June 17, 2013

Passion

Passion (N) - 1. Intense, driving, or overmastering feeling or conviction; an outbreak of anger. 
2. Ardent affection, a strong liking or desire for or devotion to some activity, object or concept.

For the purpose of this post, let's go with... A strong liking or desire for or devotion to some concept.

I believe that everyone should have something to be passionate about.  Everyone should have something that get's their blood boiling when people aren't educated in the facts.  Everyone should have something that they can't stop talking about if the topic is brought up.  Everyone should have something.

Maybe it's sex trafficking, child homelessness, hungry children in Africa, cancer... It doesn't really matter what it is, just that you have something.\

What is your something?!


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

Twenty - Three Check In

Back in December, after I turned 23, I posted twenty three goals for myself this year.  I'm much better with goals on my birthday, as opposed to New Year's Resolutions.  I don't know why.  Thought you'd enjoy to know where I am at in my goals...

1. Finish my last twelve classes at Liberty University Online with a bang
I'm trucking along.  I finished the spring with 1 A and 5 B's.  I am enrolled in six summer courses.

 2. Start grad school or seminary
I'm going!!!

 3. Make and maintain a budget
Not so much

 4. Run two 5k's
Yeah, not happening at the moment.

 5. Live in the moment
Yes, yes, and yes!  I'm finding moments to live in every day.  I skip homework to be with friends when that's more important.  I put to do lists aside and just be here.  

6. Read the entire New Testament
Whoops.

 7. De-stress
Working on it.  Having to realize that some things are out of my control and I can't stress about those.  My strength is found in the Lord.

 8. Visit a new state (I have 44 to choose from)
When I make the trip from Charlotte to Fort Worth, I'll have a chance to visit several new states! 

 9. Learn to check my email and social media sites no more than three times a day
was doing better, not so much at the moment.

 10. Lose and keep off twenty-three pounds
I should probably have weighed myself at the time of making this goal, to know how I was doing.  Whoops.

 11. Read ten books for leisure
I've read five and am reading a sixth right now!  This is huge for me!

 12. Take pictures regularly
I'm trying.  Haven't taken as many as I'd like, but doubt I could ever.

 13. Laugh until I cry
Regularly.

 14. Spend the weekend in Aiken
I spent the weekend down there for my best friends graduation.  Still praying that God will lead me back there one day.

 15. Create opportunities for God to move mightily
I created a huge opportunity through applying to seminary in Texas.  Daily, he moves mightily through this and I love it!

 16. Learn to white water kayak
I wish!

 17. Spend some QT with Victoria before she moves
We didn't spend as much time as I would have liked, but I got some quality time in with her!  She's in Germany now and I miss her like crazy!

 18. Follow God's lead
This one is huge and happening. 

 19. Have enough faith to believe that God can make my Sun Stand Still prayer come true
Working on having enough faith for this.

 20. Visit Charleston at least twice
Not there yet.

 21. Get my second tattoo
I still have to figure out where...  So many options!

 22. Find time for me once a week
I was doing really great at this one, too.  Baths, book reading, shopping alone... School is kicking my butt and not giving me much time for this.  But why do I make excuses?  Once a week for me is not much.

 23. Live a life that glorifies God at all moments
I'll never fully know if I'm succeeding at this.  But, I'm trying and my motives are for His glory not mine or anything worldly.  I'll know in Heaven...


How are you coming along in your goals for the year 2013!?

Monday, June 10, 2013

Singleness - Curse or Blessing?

Why do so many people consider being single a curse?  So many people walk around saying "woah is me" while they are single.  So many people get envious of their friends successful relationships while they are single.  So many people get mad and ask God, "why me?!" while they are single.  Why do so many people consider being single a curse?

In high school, I met who I thought was the man of my dreams.  I had no desire to have children prior to meeting him, but when I met him, I thought about having his beautiful babies.  I wanted to marry him and have happily ever after.  Somewhere along the way, our paths went in completely different directions.  After three and a half years, we walked our separate ways.  We haven't seen each other since.  We've talked a handful of times over the last three years, but it's just weird.

For the first year, I was the "woah is me", jealous, and asking God why it had to be me.  I was a good person, was active in church, managed to hold down a full-time job and full-time hours at school, while being successful at both.  I was a catch... right?

Somewhere in the midst of the second year, I found acceptance.  I realized that being single wasn't a curse.  I realized that being single was a blessing.  I didn't have anyone else calling the shots.  I didn't need to make room for anyone in by busy schedule.  I realized that this time being single was a blessing.  I had time to work on me.  I had time to grow closer to God.  I had time to "find myself".

As the third year is coming to a close and the fourth year of being single is approaching, I've found peace.  I'm not worried about finding "Mr. Right."  I'm more worried about becoming "Mrs. Right" and living a life that is pleasing to my husband, even though I don't know who he is yet.  I am confident in God's timing and believing that He will put my husband, my prince charming, my "Mr. Right" in my life when the time is right for both of us.

Singleness isn't a disease.  Singleness isn't a curse.  Singleness is a blessing. 

It's time to find your value and strength in Christ, instead of seeking it in a significant other.  It's time to find out who you are and figure out what you want in life.  It's time for you.  You have your whole life to spend with your significant other.  Value your "you time" now. 

Enjoy these moments.  Don't look at being single as a curse!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Why Texas?

Before you read Why Texas? I should let you know that I'm writing this post on March 4th, 2013.  I do not know when this post will make it live, as it is best for me to hold onto this post for a while.  I wanted to write about it all while it was fresh, but can't share it with you just yet. 

"Why Texas?!" is probably the most commonly question asked in my life right now.  Whenever I share what God is doing in my life, it is followed with, "why Texas?"  This has been such a fun question for me to answer, so let me take you back to the beginning of the story...

In November of 2012, I was researching seminaries.  I had become serious about going to seminary.  I had some amazing advice from a mentor of mine on what to look for in a seminary.  I was scouring the internet for seminaries in Charlotte, North Carolina that had a Children's Ministry program.  Want to know how many there are... ZERO!  What the what... how can I major in Children's Ministry if there are no schools with that program.  I begin to lean toward Master's in Theology or Master's in Divinity.  The Divinity program sounds super legit.  Yeah, I have my Master's in Divinity... What up!!

I started looking at schools anywhere in North Carolina or South Carolina.  I couldn't stand the chance to be farther than that away from my family.  Still not that much out there by way of Children's Ministry.  Then, one day, I'm continuing my searches and I come across this school that I just utterly fall in love with.  They don't have a Children's Ministry program but I can major in Theology with a focus in Children's Ministry.  That's like the best of both worlds for me. I'm hooked.

Until, I scroll to the bottom and see that the school is in Fort Worth, Texas.  Instantly, I close that tab out and move on.  Texas is definitely out of the question, right?  This school will not get out of my head.  Everytime I google search seminaries, it pops up.  I feel that gentle nudge from God that this is where I'm supposed to go.  I immediently give God three reasons why seminary in Texas was not an option...

Have you ever told God why you can't do something He's told you to do?  Don't leave me hanging here.  I know I'm not alone... Just like God does, He quickly squashes all of my reasons. That weekend, Pastor Steven gets on stage and introduces Pastor Robert Morris of Gateway Church in... go ahead and guess... Fort Worth, Texas.  That was God's response to one of the reasons I couldn't move.
 
Isn't God funny?  So, God manages to squash all three of my reasons in a matter of two weeks in November.  But, it took me until January to commit myself to the idea of attending a seminary in Forth Worth, Texas.  I began researching other seminaries, jobs, and churches in the Forth Worth area.  I ended up finding two more schools that I liked in Dallas.  These were became my back up/just get to Texas schools.  In February, I felt called to burn the plows, stop waivering between my options and completely trust God's plan in Fort Worth, Texas.  In March, I sent in my application.  That was intense; a letter from my church, two letters of recommendations, an essay on my testimony and an essay on why I want to go to seminary.  In April, after much waiting, I was accepted!!

So, July 19th, I am embarking on a three day journey with my parents from Charlotte, North Carolina to Fort Worth, Texas.

Monday, April 15, 2013

Blogging Groove

Oh, I'm probably the worst blogger ever.  I blog for months on end, then nothing for months, then a sappy apology and promise to write more, and the cycle repeats itself. 

Here's your sappy apology....

School. Woah!  I'm official in my super-senior year.  I will graduate in August.  Although, I'm official done with general education courses, and the only courses remaining are electives, they are insanely hard.  All of my electives are upper level, 300 or higher.  They are really testing my knowledge and reasoning for going to seminary.  I've been oh so consumed with school.

I have a few posts set to send soon.  But, I can't promise that I'm back to blogging for good.  I'm doing everything in my power to do more than just stay above water in my last year of under grad.

Forgive me.  I truly do miss blogging, but I'm not sure how I can manage both.

To help me keep up with blogging, could you tell me what you'd like to read about?  Something you are struggling with, questions you are having, whatever is on your heart.  Let me know!  I'd love to write about it.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

300 Posts

I was looking at the stats on my blog and realized I had posted 299 posts on .Redeemed.  I couldn't pass up the opportunity to share how far .Redeemed. has come in the 300th post.  300... I really can't believe it!

.Redeemed. started in July of 2010, when I set an audacious goal for myself to read the Bible in eight months and lead an eGroup about it.  I wanted to record everything that I was learning from my time in the Word.  So, I started .Redeemed.  I don't think .Redeemed. was even called .Redeemed. at the time.
... My first blog post EVER - Prof. Horner's Eight Month Bible Reading Plan
... I attended the NewSpring Leadership Conference and blogged about each speaker.  So glad that I did, because I ended up losing my notebook after blogging everything.  Happy that it is recorded on .Redeemed.
... My God Turns My Darkness Into Light was the most viewed post of 2010, with 20 views!

In 2011, I told myself I was going to blog more.  I shared some great moments with the world like...
... That time when 134 people were truly spontaneously baptized in an afternoon. 
... That time when God told me to write over forty individual cards for an Easter package being sent to my trainers boyfriend in the air force over seas.  Pretty amazing because the amount of cards I wrote was the exact number of people in his flight. 

I also shared some moments that made 2011 one of the most difficult years of my life like...
... That time when my grandpa passed away.
... That time when everything in my life sucked and I refused to give up.
... That time when I spent Christmas alone in my apartment crying all day.

In 2012, I told myself I was going to make .Redeemed. famous.  I revamped everything.  I got an email address for .Redeemed., removed my last name from twitter and started sharing my blog with the world. 
... I started Reflection Friday where I blog about what happened with my eStudents at eGroup.
... I started Sermon Sunday where I blogged my notes from church.
... I started doing blog link ups like It's Okay and Thankful Tuesday.
... I wrote about getting your self esteem back.
... This post on God still having a plan got over 150 views.

Here we are.. in 2013... 300 posts, nearly 10,000 page views [9,699 at the time of writing this], readers visiting from the United States, Russia, the United Kingdom and all over the world, and over 100 visits from google searches! 

Thank you.  Thank you from the bottom of my heart. Thank you for making .Redeemed. what it is.  Thank you for sharing .Redeemed. with friends.  Thank you for giving my passion for writing and sharing the good news of Jesus a place on the blogsphere.  Thank you.  I wouldn't continue to write on .Redeemed. if it wasn't for you, the reader...

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

45 Questions You Know You Wanted to Ask Me

I found these questions over at Confessions of a Semi-Domesticated Mama.  I enjoy reading her blog about her life and her family.  Her posts are always funny.  I especially love her weekly, He Said, She Said posts.  Anyway... she posted this last week, maybe a few weeks ago, I don't honestly know.  Time is relative in my life these days. 
 
She posted "45 Questions You Wanted to Ask Me" because she has had writers block.  I don't necessarily have writers block.  I just have a lot on my mind that I'm not ready to share with the blogesphere.  So, in an effort to keep you coming to .Redeemed., here are 45 Questions You Wanted to Ask Me!  Enjoy!
 
45 Questions You Know You Wanted to Ask Me

1. Were you named after anyone?
Keirstin was my moms favorite name for her baby dolls growing up.  It's Scandinavian.  My first middle name is for after my great-great grandmother.  My second middle name is after my moms best friend.  Yeah,  you read that right, two middle names.

2. When was the last time you cried?
MLK, Jr. Day.  I had a major revelation that day, that was stressing me out to the core.  Which brought on major water works.

3. Do you like your handwriting?
Eh. It's okay.  I don't love it.  I don't hate it.  It'll do.

4. What is your favorite lunch meat?
Chicken, if I must.  I'm not a huge fan of meat in general.

5. Do you have kids?
Goodness no!  This girl is not ready for children!

6. If you were another person, would you be friends with you?
I think I'm pretty awesome.  Definitely, I would be friends with me. 

7. Do you use sarcasm a lot?
Too much.

8. Do you still have your tonsils?
Yep. I still have all my original parts.

9. Would you bungee jump?
I don't think so.  It'd take some serious consideration.  Maybe...

10. What is your favorite cereal?
Captain Crunch! Yes, yes, yes!

11. Do you untie your shoes when you take them off?
Goodness no. 

12. Do you think you are strong?
Not one bit.

13. What is your favorite ice cream?
Birthday cake... mmmmmmm... delish.

14. What is the first thing you notice about people?
Hair.

15. Red or pink?
Pink, without a doubt.

16. What is your least favorite thing about yourself?
Lack of self-confidence.

17. Who do you miss the most?
Philip.  My grandpa. Man, we had some good times.  I can't believe that he's not here.

18. What is the technique that you need to work on the most?
Cooking.  Bleck, convinced that I need to figure that, but the microwave is so much more convenient.

19. What color shoes are you wearing?
I'm not wearing shoes.  Typically you can catch me in a pair of TOMS or cute flats.

20. What was the last thing you ate?
I just enjoyed a bowl of Cheerios's.

21. What are you listening to right now?
Summer Hits of the 2000's on Pandora.  Currently playing, "Without Me" by Eminem.  Throwback!

22. If you were a crayon, what color would you be?
Hot Pink.

23. Favorite smells?
I love Bath and Body Works 'Butterfly Flower' or anything cinnamon.

24. How important are your political views to you?
...

25. Mountain hideaway or beach house?
Beach house!  I love the Mountains, but would get little use out of a mountain hideaway.  A beach house though?  I could get a lot of use out of that.  My favorite is the beach on my birthday, in December.  No crowds, cool weather.  So good!

26. Favorite sport to watch?
Swimming.

27. Hair color?
That is a good question.  If you know, let me know.  I've forgotten.  Been seven years since I've seen it.

28. Eye color?
Brown. 

29. Do you wear contacts?
Probably should, but no.

30. Favorite food?
Fettachini Alfredo or Quesdadilla.  Depends on where we are.

31. Scary movies or happy endings?
I love both.  Sadly, few people share my love for scary movies, so I typically end up seeing something with a happy ending.

32. Last movie you watched?
Pitch Perfect.  Very good!

33. What color shirt are you wearing?
Maroon.  (PS.  Wearing black pants.  Total Carolina Girl.... South Carolina, that is)

34. Summer or winter?
Summer, summer, summer!  Hands down.  Waves, sun, tans, long nights and bleach blond hair.  So good! 

35. Favorite Dessert?
Cheesecake.  The Cheesecake Factory right around the corner from my house is dangerous.

36. Strength training or cardio?
Cardio.  I love a good run.

37. Computer or television?
Computer.  Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook and blogs... endless entertainment.  Rarely is there anything worth watching on TV, hence why I do not have cable. 

38. What book are you reading right now?
A variety.  Mainly my textbooks; Apologetics, Inductive Bible Study and Intro to Youth Ministry.  Trying to finish the final book in the "Fifty Shades" series in my 'free time'. 

39. What is on your mouse pad?
I don't have one... Do people still have mice/mouse pads?

40. Favorite sound?
Waves crashing.

41. Favorite genre of music?
I truly do not have one.  I love contemporary Christian, country, rap, hip hop, and pop.  Pandora has been known to throw a few instrumentals into my play lists that I will even tolerate.  All depending on my mood.

42. What is the farthest you've been from home?
West Virgina.

43. Do you have a special talent?
Writing?  If that doesn't count, probably not.

44. What color is your house?
Tan.

45. What color is your car?
Orange.


So, did you learn anything new about me? Do you have any other things you'd like to know about me?  I'd be happy to share more.

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Week in Review

Week in Review... a new series of posts about how I'm working toward achieving my 23 goals while 23, what I'm reading in my Bible and anything else monumental I'd like to share with you.

This week I...
 
... Got back to the gym.  I took 12 days off because school was killing me.  It was brutal, but it was worth it.  (Working on goal 10)

... Skipped school work to celebrate my roommate's last day of work and the greater things ahead in her life. (Working on goal 5)

... Am dealing with the weight of following God's call.  Realizing what it means and the cost that it will have on relationships in my life.  Realizing that losing everything is worth following God's call.  (Working on goal 15)

... Am dealing with a difficult situation in the life of someone close to me.  When a parent came to me for help, I was at a lose for words.  Following God's lead on how to deal with it.  (Working on goal 18)

... Took a mess of pictures from the eGroup I guest spoke at, as well as a trip to the Charlotte Nature Meusum with some awesome kiddos.  (Working on goal 12)

This week in my QT with God...

... I finished Start Your Day Right. It's a fourteen day devotional by Joyce Meyer. So, it took me a few more than fourteen days.  At least I finished, right? 

... I started Here I am, Lord.  It's a thirty-one day devotional about being in the moment and thanking God for what you have. 

... Realized how great the need for me to trust God.  If I delight in Him, my footsteps will be firm and I will never fall.  Really helped in relation to the calling God has placed on my life.  I've been scared, but I have no reason to fear if I delight in Him. - Psalm 27

... Realized that even though I don't have any biological children, God has placed an amazing group of eStudents that I have to thank Him for.  The influence that I have the opportunity to impress on them is a huge responsibility.  - Psalm 127

Monday, February 4, 2013

God Told Me To [ Pt. 2 ]

God told me to... I say this all the time. Sometimes, I get looked at as if I have three heads. Sometimes, people want to hear more. But, there is always a unique reaction to the statement, "God told me to..." I wanted to take a minute to explain some defining "God told me to" moments in my life.

Please read this all with an open mind. God wants to speak to you through this post. I'm merely a vessel of God, and He is using this post to speak to you. Don't read this story and not see past me. That will just lead to a missed opportunity for God to speak to you.

When God told me to lead an eGroup in Rock Hill...

I had unsuccessfully lead an eGroup for a semester.  I took a semester off of leading, to sit under the leadership of an amazing leader.  That semester was coming to an end, and I was asking God to guide me in the next direction.  I am a natural born leader, and was interested in leading an eGroup.  I knew God needed to be the center of my eGroup.

As I was in the midst of my hour long morning commute one morning, I began asking God to guide me as to if I should lead an eGroup or not.  God told me Rock Hill.  Rock Hill made no sense.  I didn't live or work near Rock Hill.  There was not Elevation campus in Rock Hill.  No one would come to my eGroup.  Right?!

That day, while about 15 minutes from Rock Hill, I saw five cars with Elevation Church bumper stickers.  Isn't God funny sometimes?  Immediately, I knew that God was serious about me going to Rock Hill. 
 
For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Let's fast forward a few months.  I'd been praying about this alleged eGroup.  God told me the kind of eGroup to lead.  One day, a video from Pastor Steven went out to the leaders of the church.  A video announcing the two campuses that Elevation would soon be opening.  Rock Hill and University.  What I'd been praying for months about, was actually happening.

I immediately jumped in at the Rock Hill campus and still lead the eGroup that God told me to lead  months before I knew anything about the campus that would one day be there.


And, that concludes the story of when God told me to lead an eGroup in Rock Hill. 

PS. You can read an older post about when God told me to start an eGroup in Rock Hill by clicking on this link -- When You Listen to God.

Friday, January 25, 2013

Reflection Friday

If you are new to .Redeemed., I lead a middle school girls eGroup. Thursday evenings with the girls is one of my favorite parts of the week. They are an amazing group of girls and they teach me as much as I teach them.

Icebreaker: Catch Words.  It's a free iPhone App that's similar to Catch Phrase.  First team to seven points wins.  We had a blast trying to beat the timer!

Discussion Highlights:  This week, we discussed honoring, being obedient and bringing joy to our parents.  We had a delightful discussion about what it looks like to honor your parents and practical ways we can begin being obedient and bringing joy to our parents. 

The girls are going to try respectfully responding to chore requests, instead of rudely declining.  When asked to do the dishes, they are going to work on thanking them for the opportunity.  They are going to remember that Hebrews 12:9-11 says that we are disciplined out of love. 

Closing: We closed by praying together, and talked about our next outreach project.


During the Week: This week, we will be reading YouVersion's "What's Next: Student Edition" Bible study.  The girls will begin brainstorming how we will pull off a bake sale for A Place for Hope.

Next Week: We will discuss what we read in our study during eGroup.  We will make snack packs for A Child's Place.  A Child's Place is one of Elevation Church's outreach partners which exists to erase the impact of child homelessness.  We will be putting a healthy snack together to go home with some kids. 

Personal Reflection: I'd say that tonight went pretty well.  Catch Words was a great way to get our evening started.  I enjoyed the heart racing laughter that the timer on the game caused.  We had a blast!  It was great to discuss honor, obedience and joy with the girls.  At thirteen/fourteen, honoring your parents can seem like the hardest thing there is to do in the world.  I can't wait to see them change the way they treat and look at their parents. 

Friday, January 18, 2013

Reflection Friday

If you are new to .Redeemed., I lead a middle school girls eGroup. Thursday evenings with the girls is one of my favorite parts of the week. They are an amazing group of girls and they teach me as much as I teach them.

Icebreaker: What is keeping you from doing great things?

Discussion Highlights:  This week, we discussed who God has made us to be.  God has made us to do great things.  Teenagers typically get looked down on because they are young, but 1 Timothy 4:12 says that not to let anyone look down on you because you are young.

We talked about the things that are holding us back from doing great things.  We talked about who the world tells us we are, who God says we are, how those two differ and which we should believe. 


Closing: We closed by praying together, believing that we can do great things, in spite of their young age.

During the Week: This week, we will be reading YouVersion's "Parent's" Bible study.  This Bible study is about honor and obedience toward our parents and bringing them joy.

Next Week: We will discuss what we read in our study during eGroup.

Personal Reflection: Mmmm... This week's discussion was great!  I strongly agree that these girls can and will do great things.  Their young age should never hold them back from doing great things.  I think it is so important that we pour into today's younger generation and let them know that they can do great things.  I can't wait to see what the Lord has in store for each of their lives.  Shoot, they are already doing great things... Just take a look at some of these Proud Momma posts.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Dressed for Christ

Pinned ImageThis week, I was having a really great conversation with my roommate.  She went on a road trip to Raleigh to hear her dad preach.  Her four hour drive home was filled with good Pandora music, windows down and a powerful revelation from God.  She isn't into blogging or writing, so I told her I would share her smack in the face with y'all!

Do you have a position that makes you want to look presentable in your community?  Do you ever go out looking like a raggamuffin and are scared that you are going to run into someone important?  You want to represent what you stand for well, right?

Whenever my roommate and I go out, we always wearing a t-shirt and gym pants.  We'll go out looking like bums on a regular basis.  She just got a job in the military.  She'll be moving in a few months to Texas and will go in as an Officer.  She was thinking about how when she moves, she'll want to look a bit nicer when just going grocery shopping, to represent her branch well.  Makes sense, right?

As Christians, we are part of the only thing in this world that is eternal.  We hold the information to a new life.  But, do we walk around presenting ourselves as Christians?  When we go out with our friends, are we showing everyone who we are in Christ?  When we are driving, are we showing the world how Christians are different?  When we are talking to our friends, are we showing them what it means to be a Christian? 

Very rarely, do we show the world who we are in Christ through our actions.  On Sundays, our actions and words are honoring to God.  But, Monday - Saturday, we use foul language, we show too much skin and seldom do we honor God with our behavior. 

We must start dressing ourselves, spiritually, physically, mentally and verbally to represent our Heavenly Father well.  Actions speak louder than words.  Our poor decisions speak mounds to those around us who are far from God, as do our good choices.


What changes do you need to make to begin representing Christ through your actions?

Friday, January 11, 2013

Reflection Friday

If you are new to .Redeemed., I lead a middle school girls eGroup. Thursday evenings with the girls is one of my favorite parts of the week. They are an amazing group of girls and they teach me as much as I teach them.

Icebreaker: What are your new years resolutions?

Discussion Highlights:  This week, being the first time we met for 2013, I wanted to set the stage for a better year than we ended on last year.  Last year, we ended on a rough note.  The girls are coming to eGroup to hang out and not to study God's word.

Pinned ImageAfter discussing goals for 2013, we discussed some biblical scriptures representing standards that we should be held accountable for as Christians.  We are called to a higher standard, not to be stumbling blocks, and to live lives that glorify God. 

Closing:  We closed by praying together, and talked about our next outreach project.

During the Week: For the next three weeks, we will be doing one week Bible studies on various topics.  My goal is to get the girls to begin reading their Bible on a regular basis.  This week, we will be reading YouVersions "Student Leadership" Bible study.


Next Week:  We will discuss what we read in our study on student leadership during eGroup.
 
Personal Reflection: The evening didn't go as I'd planned.  As we're talking about not being stumbling blocks to one another, two girls are having [ not so quite ] side conversations about something unrelated.  This was a little frustrating.  I'm strategizing on how we can fix this.  Longer eGroup meetings?  Different days?  New location?!  They're too comfortable.


[ Side Note ] - If you'd like a copy of the standards I'm holding the girls accountable for this year, I'd be more than happy to send them to you.  You can email me at redeemebdblog[at]yahoo[dot]com!

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

God Told Me To [ Pt. 1 ]

God told me to... I say this all the time.  Sometimes, I get looked at as if I have three heads.  Sometimes, people want to hear more.  But, there is always a unique reaction to the statement, "God told me to..."  I wanted to take a minute to explain some defining "God told me to" moments in my life.

Please read this all with an open mind.  God wants to speak to you through this post.  I'm merely a vessel of God, and He is using this post to speak to you.  Don't read this story and not see past me.  That will just lead to a missed opportunity for God to speak to you.

When God told me to quit my job...

I'm going to take you back to nearly two years ago.  I was working at a preschool.  I loved everything inside of my classroom; my co-teacher, my kids, and my parents.  I truly loved everything inside of my classroom.  The moment I stepped outside of my classroom, or a co-worker called my classroom, that love turned to hate.  I was miserable.  Toward the end of my time at the preschool, I would have to be relieved from my classroom to go cry in the bathroom. I would sit in my car and cry on my lunch break, and I would cry the entire way home.  I was miserable.

I felt like God kept telling me to stay.  I didn't know why God was putting me through this.  I was miserable.  I believed that he felt my pain.  But, He didn't seem to be helping me.
 
For we do not have a high priest who is unable to empathize with our weakness, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are...
 
Then one day, it was worse than ever.  I had just returned to work from a week off after my grandpa passed away.  No one was speaking to me, because I had taken more than the given bereavement days.  I was written up by my bosses boss for taking too much time off!  I cried out to God.  How could they do this to me?!  What in the world?!  I said that I would take the time off unpaid, but I needed more days than the three given.  I worked that day and the next day.  I spent every free moment praying, asking God for guidance and discernment.
 
Sunday evening, God told me to quit my job.  God told me to act in faith and just do it.  God told me not to plan. God told me to quit my job.
 
I told my parents what I was going to do.  What a fun conversations.  They did everything they could to talk me out of it.  It didn't make sense to them.  Shoot, it didn't make sense to me
 
Monday morning, I turned in my two weeks notice.  Monday afternoon, I sat down with my favorite family in my amazing class.  I wanted her to know the truth before some terrible rumors got out.  Right on the spot, she asked me to be her nanny.  Holy goodness! 
 
That is the family that I nanny for still.  That was May of 2011.  God is faithful.
 
And, that concludes the story of when God told me to quit my job.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Munching Monday

It's Not a Project, It's a Process
  • Trusting God with your life is a life long process.  It's not a one time project.
  •  
  • God has saved me - Ephesians 2:8.  He is saving me - 2 Corinthians 4:16.  God will save me - 1 Peter 1:5.
  •  
  • Just like you shouldn't disconnect your iPhone from you computer while syncing, you shouldn't disconnect yourself from God during the process.
  •  
  • Colossians 2:6-7 is not a command.  It is an invitation.  An invitation to invite Jesus into the process.

Love what you just read? Want to hear more? The entire message can be found for free at 12:00, 4:00 and 8:00 (AM & PM) here, or you can download the podcast for free!


What I'm munching on... 
For the past few months, when a true friend would ask me how I'm doing, the answer was likely frustrated.  Frustrated because I know where my life is going.  I know what God has in store for my life.  But, the direction my life is headed isn't my current destination.  Pastor Steven's sermon this weekend spoke straight to my heart.

Pinned ImageI could be caught any given day over the last few months saying that I wish I could fast forward the next three years and be done with my undergrad and graduate degrees, and be doing what God has called me to do.  But, I can't just fast forward the next three years.  I have to live out the process that will be the next three years.  God has something fabulous in store for my life over the next three years.  There will be struggles, but I will gain something from those trials.  If I fast forwarded through all of that, I'd miss it all. 

As excited as I am to be done with school, I don't want to miss out on the opportunities that I'll have over the next three years.  As ready as I am to be working at a church, as God has called me to, I don't want to miss out on the experiences that I'll have over the next three years.  And, who knows... I could begin working at a church before I'm out of seminary.  But, if I fast forward through the next three years, I'll miss out on so much. 

I'm going to learn to love the process.  I'm going to put Jesus at the center of this process.  I'm going to trust that He has a plan for my life over the next three years that are significant to who I will be after I finish seminary. 

Saturday, January 5, 2013

Week in Review

Week in Review... a new series of posts about how I'm working toward achieving my 23 goals while 23, what I'm reading in my Bible and anything else monumental I'd like to share with you.
 
 
This week I...
 
... Rang in the New Year at a sassy and classy New Years Eve Party where I made some wonderful new friends! I'm in the back with the black and white dress!
 
... Read over two hundred pages of a new book that I downloaded on my iPad for free! (Working on goal 11)
 
... Took a nice hot bubble bath after my first work out of 2013 and got my hair did and got a massage!  (Working on goal 22)
 
... Paid for my second to last semester of classes at Liberty University OnlineThanks Grandma!  (Working on goal 1)
 
 
This week in my QT with God...
 
... I started Start Your Day Right.  It's a fourteen day devotional by Joyce Meyer. 
 
... Realized how powerful my God is.  He will raise my valleys, lower my mountains and level rough land - Isaiah 40
 
... Realized how great my God is.  He has given and will give me all the strength I need in every situation - Psalm 18
 
... Realized how much I need my God.  When Jesus, the son of God, walked on Earth, even He was tempted by Satan.  When Jesus asked, at once, Simon and Andrew followed.  When Jesus, walked on Earth, he took time to get away and pray.  If Jesus can be tempted, so can I.  If Simon and Andrew can drop everything, so can I.  If Jesus needs to get away and pray, I surely do!  - Mark 1
 

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Scripted

Recently, I was listening to the radio.  They were having people call in.  The topic was, "What did you not write in your script?  But, it worked out for the better?"  What a great blog topic!

When I think about what was not in my script, but worked out for the better there is a long list. 

... when I was sixteen, I got involved with a boy.  He was the first guy I've ever looked to and thought I want to have his babies!  My script was wanting to marry him, live happily ever after and make a family together.  What wasn't in my script was us growing apart and at nineteen, breaking up and being unable to speak to each other.  But, it worked out for the better!  My life is going in a completely different direction now, and I wouldn't be doing all these things if I had settled down and married him.

... I grew up thinking I was going to be a teacher.  I forced my best friend to play school day in and day out.  My script was becoming a kindergarten teacher and being a part of shaping lives.  What wasn't in my script was being two classes away from graduation, and feeling called to change my major from Early Childhood to Religion.  But, it worked out for the better!  Knowing that God is going to use me greatly through a religion degree is an amazing feeling.

... I left my Elevation Church campus to launch a new campus.  My script was to do anything and everything I could for that campus, being a part of life change and doing some great things because God led me there.  What wasn't in my script was being terribly let down, when it didn't work out for me at that campus.  But, it worked out for the better!  Because I left that campus, God led me to another campus where I've faithfully served for a year and can't wait to see what else is in store!


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Isn't it funny how the script that we spend so much time writing for ourselves rarely comes to fruition?  We spend so much time planning what our lives are going to be like according to the script that we write for ourselves.  But, in actuality, things changed. 

We miss an opportunity.  We get called to something greater.  We take the easy route. 

What did you not write in your script?  But, worked out for the better?