October 27, 2011

It's a crazy life, but it's a good one

I have so much to say, I literally don't even know where to begin. I don't even know the words. Today is a absolutely beautiful day. I love the fall. I mean, seriously? Doesn't everyone love fall? Pretty much everyone is blogging about it. No joke. The leaves are pretty pretty colors of yellows, reds, oranges and some green beauties still peaking through. Thank you sweet Jesus.

Today, Janae and I got some dutch bros, headed downtown and took tons of fun pictures, played in leaf piles, laughed, giggled, and just enjoyed the beauty of this weather. Pictures to come. You'll love them, promise. 

This weekend I made a pretty banner that reads, "Be Thankful" which hangs over my kitchen window.
And honestly, that is how I feel. I feel so thankful and joyful to be in the place of life I am. I have unanswered questions, but I have a God who comforts me and how is bigger than all of my questioning.

God is seriously amazing me like crazy right now. I wear a ring on my hand which says, "Transformed by Jesus Christ Romans 12:2" and I finally feel joy wearing it. I feel like God is transforming me more and more every day into who He has made me to be, into His child. Patterns from my past are being broken. Prayers are being answered. Comfort is being received. God is blowing me away. He is seriously so amazing. Ah. I am so in love with my Creator. I am so blessed and have so much to be thankful for. :)

October 17, 2011

Fall. Football. Friends.

This weekend was yet another Beaver Football game. I went with my friend Janae. Here is the day in pictures. 
Accidental twins for the football game
Beautiful Fall day in Corvallis
Good Friend, Good Football game, Good Day 
Go Beavs!

Cheering for my Beavers!
I love football. I love Oregon State. I love my Beavers. I love fall. Sadly, we lost. But we played a great game against BYU.

And speaking of fall, today was such a beautiful day. It was in the high 60's and sunny, which is a BIG deal in Oregon. I didn't work today, so I decided to go for a walk, get some vitamin D, enjoy the warm sunshine, listen to my ipod, and enjoy the crisp fall air and crunchy leaves. 
Toms and Leaves
Beautiful Park
Got this today on campus. Said a little prayer for everyone who was given one
Sunshine. Ah, yes.

It was a great day. I have so much to be thankful for. God is giving me little blessings here and there. 
So Thankful.

October 16, 2011

Trancends all Understanding

I wanted to share the devotional that really touched me this week. It is from the devotional Streams in the Desert by L.B. Cowman. I love it! I was given it as a gift after my summer at Canby Grove.

It is dated for October 13:
"Anxiety should never be found in a believer. In spite of the magnitude, quantity, and diversity of our trials, afflictions, and difficulties, anxiety should not exist under any circumstances. This is because we have a Father in heaven who is almighty, who loves His children and He loves His 'one and only son' (John 3:16), and whose complete joy and delight is to continually assist them under all circumstances. We should heed His word, which says,
'Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.' (Philippians 4:6)
'In everything' - not simply when our house is on fire or when our beloved spouse and children are gravely ill, but even in the smallest matters of life. We are to take everything to God-little things, very little things, even what the world calls trivial things. Yes, we are to take everything, living all day long in holy fellowship with our heavenly Father and our precious Lord Jesus. We should develop something of a spiritual instinct, causing us to immediately turn to God when a concern keeps us awake at night. During those sleepless nights, we should speak to Him, bringing our various concerns before Him, no matter how small they may be. Also speak to the Lord about any trial you are facing or any difficulties you may have in your family or professional life.
'By prayer and petition'-earnestly pleading, preserving and enduring, and waiting, waiting, waiting on God.
'With thanksgiving'- always laying a good foundation. Even if we have no possessions, there is one thing for which we can always be thankful-that He has saved us from hell. We can also give thanks that He has given us His Holy Word, His Holy Spirit, and the most precious gift of all- His Son. Therefore when we consider all this, we have abundant reasons for thanksgiving. May this be our goal!
'And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hears and minds in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 4:7)
This is such a wonderful, genuine, and precious blessing that to truly know it, you must experience it, for it 'transcends all understanding.' 
May we take these truths to heart, instinctively walking in them, so the result will be lives that glorify God more abundantly than ever before. (George Mueller, from Life of Trust)
Search your heart several times a day, and if you find something that is disturbing your peace, remember to take the proper steps to restore the calm. (Francis de Sales)"

Such a great devotional. I hope this blessed you and encouraged you as much as it did me. :)

October 13, 2011

Friends, food, and great music

David Crowder
I have no words. It's near impossible to explain the experience I had at the Crystal Ballroom in Portland at the David Crowder Band concert featuring John Mark McMillan, Chris August, and Gungor. David Crowder Band has been my favorite band for years now. This tour was their last tour and I knew I had to go.

Before the concert, I drove up to Portland to meet some friends and have dinner. We got caught in a torrential downpour so we settled on eating at Whole Foods deli area.
Scott, Andrea, me and Emily with our awesome Margarita Pizza

After this, we put Andrea's phone into a bag of rice. It got very very wet from the downpour we got stuck in. We walked to the Crystal Ballroom and passed John Mark McMillan on the way. He was eating some chocolate. We walked all the way to the back of the line and waited until we could get inside. In line, my friend Rachael met up with us. Everyone got their tickets and we got music note stamps on our wrists.
Love this girl
Emily's excited to see Gungor face
Worshiping hands :)
Emily, Me, Rachael, and Andrea      
They finished the show by playing How He Loves, which John Mark wrote. David Crowder started singing it and all the other acts came out after the first verse and chorus. 

There is something so amazingly beautiful about believers being all together-all worshiping the same God, the creator of the universe-together. I was touched that night. And so sweetly reminded of just how good and amazing God really is.

Emily, JohnMark and I
Rachael, Chris August, and I

October 11, 2011

Just as the seasons change, as do I

Tonight, I'm going to see my alltime favorite band preform at their very last tour, ever. So stoked.
David Crowder Band
I cannot believe how life has changed. I cannot believe the place I am in right now, the people who surround me. Funny how things work sometimes.

October 9, 2011

Nice to Meet You

Meet Emily. or Nika (as I call her).
Emily and I (August)
 I love this girl. Seriously. She came into my life in June of 2010 when I first arrived at camp for Advance Crew. Some of the Summer Staff came early to help set up for camp, and Emily (Nika) was among those people.
Zucchini, Squeamish, Nutella, Nala, Nika, Sora, Bo Peap, JoJo
I remember the moment I met her. I walked into the Gal Corral and saw her sitting on her bed setting up her bunk. I nervously wandered around trying to pick which bed would be mine. I finally settled on one (but I did move around a few more times) and I started to unpack. Emily knew so much about camp. She really impressed me and she answered all my questions. When we started doing some work, I got paired up with her, Danielle (Squeamish), and Heather (Maybe) to do some painting. I was so excited to be doing something crafty. This is when our obsession with doing crafts together began. Countless times we get together to do cooking, baking, thrift shopping, crafting, and of course, some good old fashioned girl talk.
Nika, Squeamish, and I

Emily, Danielle, and I (from March)
I am so thankful that Emily is in my life. She has a closeness with the Lord so I know when I ask for her advice that she is prayerfully considering what she is saying to me. I know that when she says she is praying for me that she means it. I can always count on her for encouragement, a listening ear, and for support. I can trust her Godly counsel. I can trust her loving discipline.
"A friend loves at all times..." Psalm 17:17
I appreciate that Emily has been one of these friends to me, especially lately. It is so hard for us to be so far apart from each other. For a while, Emily was in Portland and I was in Salem. Then I moved to Corvallis. Now Emily is in Bend and I'm in Corvallis. But our friendship is important so we each make an effort to talk and speak into each other's lives. Emily, I thank the Lord for you. I am so glad you are in my life.

P.S. We need more pictures.


This month (October) is Domestic Violence Awareness month.

I encourage all of you to wear purple or a purple ribbon to show support. At least one woman is battered every fifteen seconds. Very few will tell anyone.This saddens me. So let's ban together to do something about this.

Another subject that is very close to my heart is depression. Depression is a very real illness just like cancer or the flu. Here is a quote I found about it:
"Depression is humiliating. It turns intelligent, kind people into zombies who can’t wash a dish or change their socks. It affects the ability to think clearly, to feel anything, to ascribe value to your children, your lifelong passions, your relative good fortune. It scoops out your normal healthy ability to cope with bad days and bad news, and replaces it with an unrecognizable sludge that finds no pleasure, no delight, no point in anything outside of bed. You alienate your friends because you can’t comport yourself socially, you risk your job because you can’t concentrate, you live in moderate squalor because you have no energy to stand up, let alone take out the garbage. You become pathetic and you know it. And you have no capacity to stop the downward plunge. You have no perspective, no emotional reserves, no faith that it will get better. So you feel guilty and ashamed of your inability to deal with life like a regular human, which exacerbates the depression and the isolation.
Depression is humiliating.
If you’ve never been depressed, thank your lucky stars and back off the folks who take a pill so they can make eye contact with the grocery store cashier. No one on earth would choose the nightmare of depression over an averagely turbulent normal life.
It’s not an incapacity to cope with day to day living in the modern world. It’s an incapacity to function. At all. If you and your loved ones have been spared, every blessing to you. If depression has taken root in you or your loved ones, every blessing to you, too.
Depression is humiliating.
No one chooses it. No one deserves it. It runs in families, it ruins families. You cannot imagine what it takes to feign normalcy, to show up to work, to make a dentist appointment, to pay bills, to walk your dog, to return library books on time, to keep enough toilet paper on hand, when you are exerting most of your capacity on trying not to kill yourself. Depression is real. Just because you’ve never had it doesn’t make it imaginary. Compassion is also real. And a depressed person may cling desperately to it until they are out of the woods and they may remember your compassion for the rest of their lives as a force greater than their depression. Have a heart. Judge not lest ye be judged.”— Pearl (via thesunshinewaitingtobefound)

October 7, 2011

Friday, Friday

...gotta get down on Friday. You're welcome, now you have the most annoying song ever written stuck in your head. :)
Please ignore the fact that this picture won't rotate. thank you blogger.
Jeans:Nordstrom, Vest:thrifted (american eagle), Thermal:Khols, Headband:borrowed, Boots:SteveMadden

I love Friday's. I don't have class on Friday's and I start work earlier cuz elementary schools have early dismissal. I love the chill time in the morning and being able to relax on Thursday nights. This morning, I took a nice bath, and then a shower, and put on some warm sweats. Then I headed out to my favorite spot in my apartment-my porch. Every morning I sit on my porch with my ipod, my devotional, my journal, and my bible. I love the stillness of the morning air, the coolness. It is so beautiful to me. It may seem odd to take so many things with me onto the porch, but I love it. I listen to worship music when I do my devotions. This is something I started at camp a while back. It helps me focus on God when there is chaos around me.
This particular morning, I was so excited to spend time with God without a time limit. Most mornings, I have to plan for about 45 minutes or so, but today I just reveled in my time with my sweet sweet Savior. This time in the morning is really becoming my favorite part of my day.

I'm currently reading through Psalms and 1st Corinthians. I am loving it. The Psalms are so beautifully written and have so much in them. Oh, I just love it. I love God's word, I love God. He is just so good. Despite the things I am experiencing and the unanswered questions I have, I trust in Him. And I know He is good and He is really working. I'm just so excited to see where God takes me. I could pretty much write about this forever, so I'll stop for now. What is God teaching showing you in your life?

October 6, 2011

It's like I'm a kid again

At my job, I do all sorts of kid activities. I start the day by handing out snack. Then I give the kids some free time. During this time, I am typically in the gym playing a new game I learned called two-touch. Basically, it consisits of a big wall in the gym, a ball, a two players. You can kick the ball (or touch) it twice, but it has to hit the wall. The ball has to be touched before it crosses the half court line and the ball cannot touch any of the doors, or you are out. I'm liking that I get to run around a bit during this time.
Then after some free-time, we have homework time. I am typically helping kids with their homework during this time. I sometimes have to ask other kids to explain things to me so I can help the kid who is asking me. Some of this stuff is just way surpressed in my mind! But I am absolutely loving helping kids with their homework. When they understand what you are trying to explain to them, it is so fun! I love helping them understand in a new way.

Depending on the day, we journal, have an activity led by me, or have club time. On Tuesday, it was club time, but there was only one kid left, so we plaed around the world. I have not played that game in so long! I had not even shot a basketball in a long long time. But I actually loved it. I'm loving finding the inner kid in me. Being around these kids in the afternoon at the end of my day brings me smiles, hugs, laughter, and sometimes a little frustration. But all that being said, I'm really beginning to love my job. I don't dread going, and I feel energized when I'm done with the day. (which is good, cuz when I get home I often go stright to church, back to class, or drown myself in homework).

Ya know the best thing about kids? Life is simple to them. They are in such a hurry to grow up. A lot of the games they are playing are acting what life would be like as an adult. But if only they knew how great they have it right now. If only they could enjoy being a kid while they are one.

October 2, 2011

I am Rooted

root·ed, root·ing, root
1.To become firmly established, settled, or entrenched.
2. To cause to put out roots and grow.
3. To furnish a primary source or origin to.
Roots are often underground, unseen by the world. Until you try to dig up a plant, you run into a mess of roots. This is how we should be with God. We need to be firmly rooted in him so that when the storms of life come, we do not budge. We are confident and secure because we know where our hope, strength, and support comes from.

"The seed falling on rocky ground refers to someone who hears the word and at once receives it with joy. But since they have no root, they last only a short time. When trouble or persecution comes because of the word, they quickly fall away. The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful." Matthew 13:20-22

Today at church, the pastor started a series called Fake IDs. He talked about our culture and our dog-chasing-tail habit of trying to find ourselves. He brought this idea back to the Garden of Eden and how we were origionally tempted as humans. God tells us he made us in his likeness (Gen 1:26), but when the serpant tempted Adam and Eve in the garden, he tricks them by telling Eve she can be like God (Gen 3:1-4). This is interesting because Satan(the serpant) is trying to make us doubt what God already told us. This still happens today!

 He continued and talked about how much God loves for His children to find their identity in Him. He said, "when God brings identity into us, it reshapes us to give us purpose and strength." He went on to tell a story of a young man he was counseling who struggled with pornagraphy and lust. One day, the young man said that God was going to have to keep forgiving him because he couldn't stop his addiction, he was a pervert. The pastor had a pausing moment and realized that this young man truely believed he was too far from the power of the cross.

He asked us,  "if you were to remove all stressors, circumstances, outside stuff in your life, would you be a sinner or a saint?" Think about that question. I origionally thought sinner. He said 97% of us respond the same way. As Christians, we can be humble with being self-depricating. This is key. I always struggled with how to be humble without putting myself down. I still wonder this, but I feel like things are starting to fall into place and I'm starting to understand.

"Or don’t you know that all of us who were baptized into Christ Jesus were baptized into his death? We were therefore buried with him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life. For if we have been united with him in a death like his, we will certainly also be united with him in a resurrection like his." Romans 6:3-5

"So from now on we regard no one from a worldly point of view. Though we once regarded Christ in this way, we do so no longer. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:The old has gone, the new is here! All this is from God, who reconciled us to himself through Christ and gave us the ministry of reconciliation:" 2 Corinthians 5:16-18

God says we are:





...and God says so much more about us and His love for us in His wonderful, wonderful Word.

October 1, 2011

Well done.

I don't want to be a majority. I want to be used by God and step out in faith for the life He has for me. I refuse to live safely.

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart." Hebrews 12:1-3

I want to stand before the Lord at the end of my life and be rewarded for the steps I took in faith, the risks I took, the safety I ignored because I trusted in my Father.