Friday, April 29, 2011

Take me back.

I need the blue skies.

I need the innocence.

I need the overwhelming feeling of God's presence.

I need the heat on my face.

I need the burning passion in my heart.

I need the love.

I need Honduras.

Thursday, April 28, 2011

A time for everything.

It's less than three weeks until school is out.
I am not as stressed as I thought I would be.
That's definitely a God thing.

It's less than three weeks until school is out.
I place the blame on me not updating my blog on that fact.
I've missed writing, but here I am.

It's less than three weeks until school is out.
I'm not ready to leave.
I'm not excited to separate from my friends here.

It's less than three weeks until school is out.
I'm so ready for a break from school work.
I'm ready for home.

It's less than three weeks until school is out.
I've gone through comforts, trials and
experiences that have shaken me to the core this year.
Never once did I feel like my God abandoned me.

1 There is a time for everything,
   and a season for every activity under the heavens:
 2 a time to be born and a time to die,
   a time to plant and a time to uproot,
 3 a time to kill and a time to heal,
   a time to tear down and a time to build,
 4 a time to weep and a time to laugh,
   a time to mourn and a time to dance,
 5 a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
   a time to embrace and a time to refrain from embracing,
 6 a time to search and a time to give up,
   a time to keep and a time to throw away,
 7 a time to tear and a time to mend,
   a time to be silent and a time to speak,
 8 a time to love and a time to hate,
   a time for war and a time for peace.
Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Lead me, with strong hands.

I look around and see my wonderful life
Almost perfect from the outside
In picture frames I see my beautiful wife
Always smiling
But on the inside, I can hear her saying...

“Lead me with strong hands
Stand up when I can't
Don't leave me hungry for love
Chasing dreams, what about us?

Show me you're willing to fight
That I'm still the love of your life
I know we call this our home
But I still feel alone”

I see their faces, look in their innocent eyes
They're just children from the outside
I'm working hard, I tell myself they'll be fine
They're independent
But on the inside, I can hear them saying...

“Lead me with strong hands
Stand up when I can't
Don't leave me hungry for love
Chasing dreams, but what about us?

Show me you're willing to fight
That I'm still the love of your life
I know we call this our home
But I still feel alone”

So Father, give me the strength
To be everything I'm called to be
Oh, Father, show me the way
To lead them
Won't You lead me?

To lead them with strong hands
To stand up when they can't
Don't want to leave them hungry for love,
Chasing things that I could give up

I'll show them I'm willing to fight
And give them the best of my life
So we can call this our home
Lead me, 'cause I can't do this alone

Father, lead me, 'cause I can't do this alone

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Surrender is stronger.

God grant me the serenity
to accept the things I cannot change;
courage to change the things I can;
and wisdom to know the difference. 
Living one day at a time;
Enjoying one moment at a time;
Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
Taking, as He did, this sinful world
as it is, not as I would have it;
Trusting that He will make all things right
if I surrender to His Will;
That I may be reasonably happy in this life
and supremely happy with Him
Forever in the next.
                                               --Reinhold Niebuhr

A few girls and I got together on Sunday at a park. Our plan was to worship in the natural beauty God has blessed us with. How beautiful it was. Singing is always good. Singing with the heat of the sun on your face, the wind blowing through your hair and the birds chirping along is different. I could sit out there forever talking to God. Singing to Him. Worshiping and thanking Him for all of his blessings. It's strange to realize how small you are in such a big world. Humbling. We're part of something bigger.

If I could sit out there on those rocks all day I would be happy. But life awaits. Isn't that always the case?  Something is always waiting. It's sad. We have to set aside time in our lives to honor and worship our Creator. When really it should be the exact opposite. We should be setting aside time to do worldly tasks. I'm determined to make time for my God. But not just to make time. To make everything I do, all day, about God. I can tell when I've surrendered myself to God or when I'm holding the reigns. I never was good at riding a horse. How could I possibly think I'd end up anywhere worth while when I'm in control? Give it up. We were never called to be in control.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Let me elaborate.

You know when you're writing and 5 million thoughts are going through your head? That's me. All the time. Unfortunately, this means I forget to say things I wanted to. Things that are more important than I realize.Then there is the fact that we all interpret things differently. Two important things. 

Two posts ago, in "Don't get too comfortable", I mentioned that my school had the nickname of being a "bubble". Which it does. I said I enjoyed the bubble. Which I do. But I don't think I have the same view of this bubble as most do. My view of the bubble is just that it is my safe place. My place where I can go and re-energize.  My dorm in my room, the campus is my house. That probably sounds weird. But home is your safe place. Harding is my home now. Harding is my safe place.

BUT. I do know the other definition of this "bubble". It's pretty negative. The "bubble" basically states that Harding is a utopia of sorts. That everyone inside of this bubble is perfect and happy all the time. And that basically, there isn't a world outside of Harding. And even if there were, it'd be much different. My views could not be further from that. I know Harding is not a utopia. There are people all around me hurting. Suffering. Crying out. I see them. And I want to help. We are all living here together. We are essentially a family. We are a family. Anything I can do to be a blessing to someone here, I want to do. I'm looking for those opportunities. Also, there is most definitely a world outside of Harding. A world where the same types of people are hurting, suffering and crying out. I know this and embrace it. Because unless you have to, you do not stay cooped up at home all day. I leave campus and see it firsthand. So I know there are people everywhere that need love. Need to see Jesus. Need to know what safe feels like.

Harding is my safe place. It's not perfect. And that's okay. If it were, who would I minister to? Who would minister to me?

"On hearing this, Jesus said, 
'It is not the healthy who need a doctor, but the sick."
Matthew 9:12

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Little rays of sunshine.

 Today is a good day. 
So I felt like reminiscing. 


Stop fighting and let Him work.

5 weeks, 6 projects, and 5 finals.
That just about sums it all up.

I find myself most eager for God when I am anxious (good/bad) or stressed about something. So usually, the tail end of my semesters are an eager time. I have some favorite verses that I look back on. Often. I'd like to think that somebody reads what I write on here. Assuming that's the case, I know I have one shot. Something to draw you in and make you want to come back. Well, I want to share with you my favorite verses. My "always-good-for-any-occasion" verses. Hopefully, it's enough to make your visit to my blog worth it. If not, perhaps something I post in the future will do it for you. Maybe that's just my way of getting you to come back. Who really knows?

"Who of you by worrying 
can add a single hour to his life?"
Matthew 6:27
Give it up guys. Literally. 
Stressing and worrying about our problems doesn't fix them. 
Give them to God. It's going to seem difficult.
But once you do it, His grace will shine through all of your problems.

"If God is for us who can be against us?"
Romans 8:31
We can handle anything and anyone with God. Period.

"Jesus Christ is the same 
yesterday and today and forever."
Hebrews 13:8
Jesus' teachings are clear. And they're never changing. 
Don't get mixed up in ways the world twists His teachings.
It's all right there in black and white.

"Be joyful in hope, 
patient in affliction, 
faithful in prayer"
Romans 12:12
Pretty straight forward. Be joyful, patient and faithful.

"As the mountains surround Jerusalem,
so the Lord surrounds his people."
Psalm 125:2
Our mighty fortress. Our protection. Our Savior. Our Father. 
How comforting to know God surrounds us, always.

"Cast all your anxiety on Him 
because he cares for you."
1 Peter 5:7
Take it seriously. 
Don't keep your fears, worries and anxieties pent up in you. 
Share them with the one person who can help.

If only we took the time to realize how lucky we are. How cared for and loved we are. It's not just some fairytale. Or myth. There is a God. A God who cares for you. A God who wants a relationship with you. It's so much easier to form a relationship with God than to try and fight it. What will we lose? The world. What will we gain? A relationship with our God and a chance to spend eternity with him. It's reassuring to know, even if I feel alone, I'm not. Even if I feel like I have nobody, I do. Because what they say is true...
...we all need somebody to lean on.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Don't get too comfortable.

I haven't written in awhile. Well four days isn't that long, but it feels it. I have a lot of thoughts spinning around in my head. A lot. But first I want to share my weekend. It involved flying home to NY to surprise my sister for her 16th birthday. And when I say surprise I mean, she had no idea/but really she had no idea at all/there was screaming involved/tears were shed/a scene was made, kind of surprise. Believe me, movies couldn't have done it any better.

Then as quickly as I had been there, I was gone. Back in Searcy. It's so strange how being gone for one weekend reminded me of so many things. First, it is way too easy to get comfortable living in the world. Second, I am grateful for the opportunities I have at school to grow. Third, I am blessed. 

I have heard my school, Harding, referred to as being a "bubble" more times than I can count. But it's not an incorrect statement. We are apart of this Christian community. My own little sanctuary of sorts. I am comfortable. It is so easy to feel like I am being a good Christian. When really I am just being. Too often I get comfortable. Everything is going well and this must mean I am good with God. I'm doing what I should be. There's his chance. Satan slips right in under my nose. Before you know it, my world feels like it's falling apart. Why? I thought I was doing well? So I pray a distraught prayer to God asking him why, why is He putting me through this. It feels like every time I finish that prayer I can almost hear God say, "Welcome back my sweet child, I've missed you." And it clicks. When was the last time I prayed just thanking God for the day he had given me? Or told him all about the things happening in my life? Oh yeah. The last time I prayed like that was right before I said to myself "Everything is going well, this must mean I am good with God." It hits me like a ton of bricks. Guilt. Shame. Grief. But then I am quickly reminded it's not too late. It's not my last chance. All it takes is me, running back to God to make it all right. So I do. That's what I am doing now. Running back. And I am comforted to know, my God is waiting for me with arms wide open. The Maker of all the universe is calling me by name. 

"May your unfailing love be my comfort..."
Psalm 119:76

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

When in doubt, love.

The easiest and yet most difficult concept; Love on another. Tonight was good. I hate admitting that there were definitely times when I lacked love, but I will. (Side note: I'm trying to be as real as I can in this blog. I'm going to say what is on my heart, but I won't ever lie and claim that I live up to my thoughts 100% of the time. I'm human and I have faults. You know this, I know this. But keep in mind, it does all come from a good place.) How often do we get frustrated with someone and spread everything but love? What if every time we got frustrated, we loved? It could lead to some awkward situations. But what if? 

"A new command I give you: Love one another. 
As I have loved you, so you must love one another. 
By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, 
if you love one another." John 13:34-35

In the bible, we are called to love. I went to my nifty concordance just to put this thought to facts. I counted over 250 verses that talk about love. Loving one another, loving ourselves, loving the church, loving our enemies. There's no denying, God thinks love is a pretty important concept. I'm with Him on this one. I'm a big fan of love. Giving love, receiving love, the whole nine. It's a pretty amazing concept and an amazing feeling to feel loved. But I think my favorite thing is to give love. Especially to those that may have not always known love. (I'm pretty sure that's why I am so in love with Por Los NiƱos) Loving isn't always easy though. But even when it's hard it's something I remind myself that I am called to do. It's easy to love the people that love you, care for you and make you happy. But what about the people who could care less about you? The people who make it clear they don't love you? The people who would give anything to see you upset? We can just love everyone else, right? Nope. Often times, these people need it the most. Everyone needs love. We need to be Jesus to everyone in our life. We may be the only Jesus some people ever see. Don't take that lightly. It won't always be easy. But it will always be worth it. 

"You have heard that it was said, 'Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.' But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect." Matthew 5:43-48

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Linked in unity and sisterhood.

Tonight, we beauxed. It's always my favorite night. 

Our awesome new DGR beaux, Travis & Ellis!
All of our wonderful Beaux.

Under the name of Delta Gamma Rho.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

It really is the little things.

Fellowship. Laughing. Hugs. Singing.
Sleep. Pictures. Prayer. Encouragement. Smiles.

Any one of these things is enough to brighten my day.
Today, I was blessed to experience each one.

And today, the message was relayed to me that my little man Jose wishes he could give me a hug. Done and done. My heart is all his. My heart is happy.

It's the little things.

I've been reading my bible like this lately: flip through the pages, look for what is already highlighted and reflect on why. It seems like every time I do this, I find something old and it becomes new. It's old as in the fact that I've already read it. It's new in the fact that I realize something I didn't before, or it clicks in a way it didn't before. It's like watching a movie. You watch it the first time with the desire to see everything. Take in everything. But really, you only catch maybe the plot. But then you go back and watch it again. Only then do you start catching all of the little details you missed the first time. Every time you go back and watch it, even if you've seen it a hundred times, you're going to catch something you missed before. Reading my bible has proven to be no different, and through this, I'm finally understanding why it's so important to keep reading the scriptures.

His divine power has given us everything we need 
for life and godliness through our knowledge of him
who called us by his own glory and goodness.
2 Peter 1:3

The little things I find flood me with joy. It's hard for me to believe that I repeatedly "just happened" to come across a verse. I always feel like God directs me to a certain verse to comfort me. He knows exactly what I need to read. To be reminded of. To understand. He knows exactly what I need, and when I need it. Our God is an all powerful, all knowing, all loving Father. He wants for us to trust Him. To follow Him. To love Him the way He loves us.

Friday, April 1, 2011

I am a flower quickly fading.

Who am I, that the Lord of all the earth
Would care to know my name
Would care to feel my hurt?
Who am I, that the bright and morning star
Would choose to light the way
For my ever wondering heart?

Not because of who I am
But because of what You've done
Not because of what I've done
But because of who You are

I am a flower quickly fading
Here today and gone tomorrow
A wave tossed in the ocean
A vapor in the wind
Still You hear me when I'm calling
Lord You catch me when I'm falling
And You told me who I am
I am Yours, I am Yours

Who am I, that the eyes that see our sin
Would look on me with love
And watch me rise again?
Who am I, that the voice that calmed the sea
Would call out through the rain
And calm the storm in me?

Not because of who I am
But because what of You've done
Not because of what I've done
But because of who You are

I am a flower quickly fading
Here today and gone tomorrow
A wave tossed in the ocean
A vapor in the wind
Still You hear me when I'm calling
Lord You catch me when I'm falling
And You told me who I am
I am Yours

Not because of who I am
But because of what You've done
Not because of what I've done
But because of who You are

I am a flower quickly fading
Here today and gone tomorrow
A wave tossed in the ocean
A vapor in the wind
Still You hear me when I'm calling
Lord You catch me when I'm falling
You told me who I am
I am Yours, I am Yours, I am Yours