Thursday, November 25, 2010

Atypical Holiday.

This was not a normal Thanksgiving. First of all, because I did not go home to the family - I had to stay in town for homework. Lame, I know.

I started out the week thinking I would be doing homework for five days straight, maybe hang out with one or two people, and that my Thanksgiving meal would consist of a turkey sandwich. But, then that changed. A friend of mine invited me to have Thanksgiving with them (which we moved to my apartment).

Tuesday night, we went shopping for all the Thanksgiving supplies. Typical items, except one. A 21-pound turkey. Yes, twenty. one. for three people. Did we guess wrong? No. But we are cheap college students, and this turkey was $10 less than a small turkey - doesn't make sense but whatever.

I also had to prepare the turkey by myself Thursday morning. (Note: I. am. not. a. cook. In the last year, I've messed up canned soup, microwave rice and popcorn.) I also get grossed out various food items - like touching a raw turkey. When the instructions told me to "release" the legs and I was pulling on a leg, I looked at my hand, felt the foot and saw the leg bone and thought, "ew! actual turkey leg!!" Also, after I was cleaning it out, it made a farting noise. I giggled to myself. Anyways, the turkey turned out faaabulous!

To save you from every detail, here's a list of the following other funny things that happened either Wednesday or Thursday:

- Tal needing to whisper sweet nothings into my hand can-opener because it's stubborn.

- Derrik almost pouring out 1/4 cup of milk that we didn't need, the girls screaming to stop, and then me drinking that fourth of a cup.

- inventing microwave pumpkin cupcakes (maybe not completely new, but new to us!)
- realizing halfway thru the first pie we needed a lot more ingredients
- burning the top crumble-type crust on our second pie
- baking until one in the morning = giggles
- sneaking a piece of apple that had way too much nutmeg on it
- Tal yelling, "oh, it's beaaautiful!!" at an awkwardly loud volume after rolling her pumpkin roll
- all three of us falling asleep during an afternoon movie
- realizing we had enough turkey left (even after seconds) to feed a small village, and didn't even touch our second pie

- Tal teaching me not only what a sauce pan is, but that my stove top lifts up so you can clean under it...
- realizing the turkey came with a pop-up thermometer, after we already had put one in

I don't think I've ever laughed so much or had such a fun Thanksgiving! Definitely learned some things :) I also served lunch to homeless people with a friend's church, which was awesome. As I'm sure it does to everyone who helps homeless people, it made me so thankful to have my little apartment and have a huge Thanksgiving feast. I loved being able to just help the people, even if it was just for one meal.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Thanksgiving - Part 2.

16th - My morals. This kind of goes back to my parents... but I am so thankful for the way I was raised. There are people I see dressed or acting a certain way, and it's so sad. It's even worse when some of these people claim to be followers of Christ.

17th - Planners. I love my planner. This may be a lame thing to list, but it's what helps keep my brain organized. Disorganization in my life is stressful.

18th - Naps. I wasn't a napper before this summer, and somehow that changed. Although usually naps take place of something that I should be getting done, I'm thankful that the Lord gives me a little rest in the middle of my day. :)

19th - Beauty. There are so many beautiful things in this world - including people. I see God's beauty in so many things; art, people, nature, photos, on and on. Part of what makes people beautiful is their personalities - I love how different He has made each of us.

20th - Mentors. There are people in my life that have helped me through difficult times and situations, people that give me such Godly insight and advice. I'm so thankful that the Lord placed these women in my life to help guide and teach me.

21st - Coffee. I've fallen in love with coffee this semester. I've always loved the soup'd up, sugary drinks at Starbucks, but I've grown to appreciate the less sugary coffee in the mornings. But, occasional runs to Starbucks with good friends are always fun :)

22nd - The way the Lord teaches me - daily. People, situations, through His word... all of it. A God who loves me enough to teach me, rather than let me remain... stupid. Haha.

23rd - Sweats. I will miss the days that I can just throw on some sweats and go to class. Although I'm totally pumped to have a big girl job in the next two years, I am not looking forward to dressing up everrrrryday. Blech.

24th - Breaks. Although this Thanksgiving break will be not much of a break, and more of a homework marathon... I'm thankful for the somewhat rest.


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Oh yeah, that's right... no one.

I know we always laugh at them.

So check out my the new blog I'm co-writing on. :)


I went to church by myself for the first time today. This may not seem like a big deal to you, and it wasn't as big of a deal as it would've been the few times I thought about going by myself before.

As I was driving, I felt very adult... one of those moments that I realized I'm an adult, I will soon be on my own, I have to make my own decisions - like going to church alone. As I stood in my row alone, and the awkwardness quickly faded, I wondered two things: people go alone all the time, why did I think this would be so horrible? My faith has never been so important to me or such a huge part of me, and that's why I realized it doesn't matter who is there - it's about God.

I am frustrated and confused by people who's faith turns off and on. Our God is not a God who likes to see us once a week, or when we're going through hard times. Our God who wants every bit of us, every day, in complete surrender. Just hanging a cross around your neck and being a "good" person is not near enough for Him.

Not everyone who cries Lord will enter Heaven.
Believing in God is something even the demons do.
We have to fight and persevere for true faith.
Enduring trials shows your faith is genuine.
A relationship with Him is two-sided, He won't just snap His fingers - we have to put forth effort.

I have been in that place before - I was stuck there before college. The place of false hope and freedom, our own manufactured faith.
Examine yourself.

May we be a people who desire Him more than sleep, more than fun stuff, more than anything of this world.

Saturday, November 20, 2010


My week:

Blood sugars dropped severely low, out of nowhere, multiple times. Called doctor finally to adjust insulin levels to get it all fixed.

Instead of just getting one new project, I got three. One of which is open-ended, making it harder rather than easier.

Developed art history final project that will require working over thanksgiving break.

Changed my class schedule - again - and plans for my minor.

Even in the midst of all this crazy week (or, even just the crazy month it's been...), I woke up at six a.m. to read the Word and pray for an hour and a half. That's when I found this verse:

"If your instructions hadn't sustained me with joy, I would have died in my misery." - Psalm 119:92

Life has been just go-go-go for the past few weeks, but there have still been small moments when I just feel the Lord's peace, and just stop and smile at how good He is. I think sometimes as believers, we get caught up in everything He blesses us with and love those things, and not truly love Him.

Monday, November 15, 2010


Last year, I focused on Scripture about giving thanks, and this year I've seen people take pictures everyday of something they're thankful for... so I decided that this year everyday of November I would write down something I am thankful for. Rather than have a daily post, or make you all wait til December 1st, this blog post will be updated here and there throughout November.

1st - My sisters in Christ. Oh, love these girls. I love that I have a handful of girls I can turn to immediately for encouragement, prayer and godly advice.

2nd - A boyfriend who cares. I hear stories or bits and pieces about boyfriend's who ditch their girls, who are rude, who yell (ahem...neighbors) and it makes me feel all the more blessed that mine does none of that. Not that he is perfect, and neither am I, but to have someone at the end of the day want to pray for you is so uplifting.

3rd - My job. Sometimes my job is crazy... with three deadlines in one day and all that jazz. Sometimes I complain about lack of money, but in reality this job is a huge blessing. Everyday I either come to work smiling or leave smiling.

4th - My sister. Five years ago, a friend of mine (brother of a friend of my sister's) was killed in a car wreck. That was one of the most emotional weekends ever. I remember getting to my sister's apartment and just standing in the doorway hugging and crying. Since then, it seems every November and every July (his birthday) I am reminded of how much I appreciate and love my sister.

5th - College education. This past week was a little stressful, registering for classes... trying to figure out my schedule. I have to take 15 hours to maintain a scholarship, and with my two minors and one major, it's sometimes hard to figure out my schedule. I was so frustrated and frazzled that day, and then I thought of people who can't afford college... and am just so glad that I have people who help support me.

6th - Grandparents. Oh, these people mean the world to me. My grandmother is someone I dearly admire and look up to - and I always have. They came to see me yesterday and are leaving today after lunch - less than 24 hours with me. But, they love and support all their grandchildren to pieces - it's so amazing. I love their relationship and life - they set such a godly example and it just makes my heart smile.

7th - Creative skills. I love that God has given me an artistic talent, and a passion along with it. I love when people ask me to design them t-shirts or signs. One of the most enjoyable things is walking around campus seeing things I've designed :)

8th - Psalm 81:6. Everytime I read this verse, I think it's directed right at college students. It is such a sweet reminder of how Christ will take care of every last detail if we just hand it over to him. Countless times over the last week or two, I have come home for the day thinking I will be doing homework until one in the morning. And somehow, it gets done so fast, that I just laugh at how stressed I had been.

9th - Laughter. I love laughing. I love that there are so many things in my life to laugh at, or people to laugh with.

10th - God's love. Not the typical God's love (though that is important too), but the romantic side of God. I was reading Captivating today, and couldn't help but smile when the book talked about how He romances us - always has, everyday. The best part was when it compared our flowers, chocolate and candlelight dinners to sunsets and falling stars. Mmmmm, some of my favorite things. :)

11th - Exercise. Yup, something most people hate. I love. And for two weeks last year when I was basically immobile, I realized how lucky I am to be able to walk and use all my limbs. I do Zumba twice a week, and it is incredibly fun. I love something so fun and crazy.

12th - Snow. I actually hate snow, unless it brings a snow day along with it. I woke up Friday to inches of snow, inches... I thought - this means winter is coming. I don't like winter; the cold, the wind, the snow. But, I'm thankful for moisture, and just to see another one of God's pieces of art.

13th - Parents. I realize more and more how blessed I am to have the parents I do. Though we probably frustrate each other and don't understand each other half the time, I know I am loved... which isn't something everyone can say. I'm so thankful for the way they raised me, it reminds me of Hebrews 12:11 :)

14th - Accountability. We can go through our walk with Christ alone - but that's not how He intended it. I love that I have brothers and sisters around me, challenging me. A friend and I started something - getting up before the sun gets up so we can read the Word for at least an hour. Day one: not even tired, and in high spirits. :)

15th - Adoptive parents. I love my "adopt-a-buff" parents who let me do laundry for free and feed me. But more than that, just to have more Godly adults to turn to in my life. It's nice just to have a other little 'family' here. As much as I love independence, it's nice knowing I have a little second home here, too.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Divine Romance.

I love sunsets.
I love star-gazing.
I love walking quietly, surrounded by nature.
I love giggly babies.
I love the sparkle in little girl's eyes.
I love violins and piano.

These are some of the things and ways that God romances me. God's version of flowers, chocolates and candlelight dinners comes in the from of sunsets and falling stars.

Something that He has been showing me lately is that He is not just Father and Lord, but also our Lover.

There are days, some more than others, when I am overwhelmed by His love. This summer I was so keenly aware of His presence - everywhere. And I am so, so glad that I didn't lose that when I came back to Texas.

The best part is that in the spacious love of God, our souls can lie down and rest. (taken from Captivating)

To be spiritual is to be in a Romance with God. When we're totally captivated by Him, we follow Him in complete obedience. When we're romanced by Him, we can't help but surrender and worship Him.

We always hear that there's places in our hearts that only God can fill, but there's also places in His heart just for us. He desires us, more than we desire Him. God finds her beautiful, has deemed her worthy, and in Him, she is enough.

Thursday, November 4, 2010


The subtitle on the front of Captivating says, "Unveiling the Mystery of a Woman's Soul." And my eyes were opened to part of the mystery of my own soul as I read the last two nights.

I know everyone has their heartaches, their losses, their wounds, their fears. Mine is abandonment, or back-stabbing (sounds so elementary, but hear me out).

Almost every person in my life that was close to me at one point, has deeply hurt me. Grade school "best friends" moved away. Friends in high school did/said horrible things to me, things that enemies are expected to do - not the ones you call your best friends. More friends moved. It has been a reoccurring theme in my life that the ones closest to me either leave or turn their back on me.

The damage done to our feminine hearts through the wounds we received is made much worse by the horrible things we believe about ourselves as a result. That's me. I, for so long, had a twisted view of myself. Twenty years without a boyfriend, hurt after hurt, loss after loss... Satan begins to put thoughts in your head and twist your vision. The book told a story of this woman who was always changing, always trying to "improve" herself somehow. Why did she try so hard? She simply fears that somehow she is not enough. Deep down we fear there is something terribly wrong with us. I read that story and realized how often I fall into that trap - not praying enough, not getting good enough grades, not working out enough, eating too much, on and on.

Every semester since I started college, something slightly traumatic/dramatic has happened. Every. semester. It already happened this semester. You cannot be alive very long without being wounded. The sun rises, the stars follow their courses, the waves roll in crashing against the rocks, and we are wounded. When it happened this semester, for the first time, I handled it well. One day of shock and sorrow, and it was over. I remember telling my best friend, that I felt like God had given me such a peace about it, a peace I didn't understand. It was almost like I didn't want to be okay with it. I remember praying that God would soften my heart - I was afraid my heart was being hardened, that I was so used to this pain that it was almost expected.

I'm a lover, not a fighter. I can fight, but I'm so much more of a lover. You hurt me and come back in two weeks, I'll give you a hug. Some don't understand. Sometimes I don't understand. Things were done, awful things. And they shaped us. Something inside of us shifted. Something shifted. In high school. I once held a grudge for 46 days. Note that my graduating class had 22 students - this is not a big school where you can walk down a different hallway. My classmate and I's lockers were all within 15 feet. I held that grudge - against two people. I look back at that and wonder how I even did that. I look at my life and see for how long I didn't acknowledge Him in my life - and He has never held a grudge.

I stopped holding grudges and started building walls. If we were overwhelmed or belittled or hurt or abused, we believed that somehow it was because of us - the problem was with us. We hang a "do not disturb" sign on our personalities, send a "back off" message to the world. We try so hard, and in so many ways, to protect our hearts from further pain. The problem is our plan has nothing to do with God. I feel myself building walls just from experiences I hear of those around me. Do you know how difficult it is to love people and have walls up at the same time? Or, you can just tear down those walls and let God work. 

It's nothing to new to hear that women struggle with our mind. Satan twists our mind, our thoughts, our vision. Until I read this chapter in Captivating, I almost took it as another thing wrong with us - we aren't do something right, that's why Satan attacks us. Wrong. Satan was first named Lucifer, or Son of the Morning. It infers a glory, a brightness or radiance unique to him. He was perfect in beauty. And it was his ruin - pride entered his heart. Now his heart for revenge is to assault beauty. He hates Eve, because she is captivating, uniquely glorious, and he cannot be. Satan is jealous of how amazing God created women. He didn't attack Adam, he attacked Eve - and still does everyday. You are hated because of your beauty and power. He fears who you are; what you are; what you might become. 

As my relationship with Christ deepens, as I become more aware of and embrace His promises - I see the actions of Satan. Too bad our God is greater, and stronger. If Satan didn't arrange for the assault directly, then he made sure he drove the message of the wounds home into your heart. Satan has done this for too long. But God has done and continues to heal my heart. I think all Satan does sometimes is allow God to display His power even more.

I would be in a worse place right now if it weren't for the grace of God. I could've never handled all the pain and hurt by myself. God had me in His hand all along, even when I wasn't paying attention.

You are passionately loved by the God of the universe. You are passionately hated by His Enemy. 

Monday, November 1, 2010


It is an overwhelming mix of joy, fear, confusion and peace when the Lord starts to move drastically in your life. Especially when it's just one thing after another in a short amount of time.

But, Jesus was a radical Messiah and the Bible teaches us to live radically. And we don't just confess Christ in our lives, but we conform to Him. He's our template, plain and simple.

God has definitely done some crazy, awesome things over the past several months...

and it's definitely continuing.