April 26, 2012

Awesome and Awkward Thursday

1. Clean laundry. The smells, the way it feels, everything. It's just great.

2. Getting e-mails about what to expect, pack, and do to get ready for CAMP!

3. Gluten free spagetti. I'm in love, really.

4. Realizing where I stretched myeslf too thin and stepping out of a few commitments. It's awesome. Yay for not being permantely tired and running around like a crazy person.

5. Having a friend tell me they can see the changes in me, even from afar. :)

6. Texting good friends and falling asleep doing it.

7. An awesome weekend planned: Friday-scavenger hunt with college group, Sat: lunch with Brynn and shopping with Emily! Sunday: Utah presentation in church, Brazil Missions Trip Meeting, and then more church.

8. Having my dance teacher tell me how MUCH she missed me in class last week. MORE THAN ONCE.

9. Today is THURSDAY, and tonight is Bible Study AND a girl's night. HELLO DOUBLE WAMMY OF AWESOMENESS.

10. How LONG my hair is getting. Like seriously, people. I don't think you realize.

1. Waiting until I was completly out of underwear to do my laundry. Yep, I did it. And I re-wore dirty things, like a boss.

2. Having to leave class early yesterday due to not having taken a quiz yet. My professor told me by saying, "I need you to leave." My response, "FOREVER?"

3. Checking the mail, again, and again, with no mail waiting for me. Okay, maybe that's just sad. I really like letters, okay?!

4. Being in charge today at work. Hello, teacher Sarah. I look 12 but I'm in charge, really.

5. Texting late at night. My texts start to look: lke tsih. Today I tried to text "yay" and it said "yat." Caeli wrote back, "yat?"

6. Banning the word "awkward" by the kids at work. No, you may not use that word. I take 10 stickers away from your chart. Hahahaha the power.

7. Realizing that in fact, today is Thursday. Not Friday. I am losing my marbles, people.

8. Having to explain what a wood cookie is. Enough said.

9. Driving around to look at houses for rent and peeking into windows like a creeper. Oh, hi cute man neighbor.

10. The fact that I can see the WHOLE entire parking lot from my window. It seems like I'm being a creeper, but really, I'm just enjoying the view, kinda.

April 23, 2012

What am I getting myself into?

This is the question I always ask myself when God has called me into something and I hesitantly follow Him.

I love CAMP. Everything about it. And this summer I'm working at one again! And I couldn't be more excited, but I keep asking myself, "what am I getting myself into?" I watch the videos of camp and see major outdoorsy things that scare me, but ALSO really excite me. There is a ton that I don't have answers to: what I'll be doing, what camp is like, what kinda food I'll have to eat, etc etc etc. I'm a little nervous. But I don't need all the answers, nor do I really want them.

I remember when I got word I'd be working at Canby Grove. I was so excited, but I was also experiencing fear and the unknown like never before. But I was faithful to where God called me. And I was so blessed. God did so much in my life and in my heart that summer. He made me me.

Corrie ten Boom said, "Never be afraid to trust an unknown future to an all-knowing God."

So that's what I'm doing. I'm trusting, knowing where He leads me will untimately always be good.

April 19, 2012

What a beautiful night

I love starry nights where I look up at the sky and see billions of little stars. Billions of little stars that God created. Each one is unique to Him. As big as the sky looks to me, God is bigger.
It was a beautiful night.

Caeli and I found this song (and we hunted for a long time to find out what it was) and we are currently obsessed: On this Beautiful Night by Urban Rescue

"Like a fire in the dark
You broke my world apart
So I could see
On this beautiful night,
On this beautiful night
Ohhh, On this beautiful night"

I love this. This is just how I feel. God broke my world apart so I could see Him more clearly. I am so thankful that He did so. I don't know where I would be now if he hadn't done so.

"Fall on my face
Into Your arms
Now I am lost here with You
Hold out my hand, open my heart
Now I am lost here with You"

God made me fall on my face. Not just fall, but fall flat on my face. There was no where to look to but into His loving arms. I am LOST without God. Without Him, I wouldn't know where to belong or who I am. My identity and purpose is in Him and Him alone.

April 17, 2012

I am a reformer


1: to put or change into an improved form or condition b : to amend or improve by change of form or removal of faults or abuses
2: to put an end to (an evil) by enforcing or introducing a better method or course of action
3: to induce or cause to abandon evil ways <reform a drunkard>

This video represents so much of who I feel I am and who God is making me to be. I have never felt like I fit in. I have always felt different than other people. I do not like to be comfortable and I strive to follow God no matter the cost. I have always sought to change things, to make big impacts.
And I know I will. Because I am a child of God, the Lord of Lords. He makes changes in people. And He has changed me. The hardships I have faced will not go unused by my Father.

Some Days are filled with the Unexpected

Some days you hit little road bumps. Things don't go quite as planned. And you know those days, you get kinda frustrated and start feeling really down.Those are the kind of days Satan likes to attack. He sees we are weak and he takes advantage of it.
My Friday the 13th was one of those days.

It all started with a very difficult and unplanned Thursday night. I normally spend my Thursday nights at bible study, with some lovely girls, but this week, I was doing something very unexpected and somewhat traumatic. I woke up Friday still dealing with what happened the night before. I went to class, took a quiz, and went back home to pack for my exciting weekend at the beach for 15 beautiful girls from my college group. I packed my bags, picked up the girls I was driving and got all the way to Monmouth when my car started making a noise. A thereisarocktumblingaround noise. I pulled over and put on my flashers.

After a few attempts, I ended up having to have my car towed all the way back to Corvallis. Yay AAA. I got home, walked in the door after paying the tow man and cried. Literally sat on my bed and cried. I was pretty certain at that point that I wasn't going to be going to the coast for the retreat. But Aimee was not okay with that, so she called all the cars that hadn't left yet and arranged a seat for me.

my poor baby being towed
Beautiful sunset view from the house
Then I finally arrived on the coast for the weekend with some lovely girls.
Erin, Rosie, Amy, Tina, Lexi, me, Sara
Catch phrase: aka INTENSE
On that night, we stayed up til 3:30 in the morning or something sharing stories. It at all started with games where we would ask a question and everyone would go around and answer. The question that kept us up so late was, "What is something you have overcome?" Little did we know at the time what that question would turn into. There was tears, laughter, hugs, confessions, acceptance, confessions, and so much more. It was really a beautiful time.

I woke up on Saturday morning rested. We made breakfast and then headed down to the beach.

Back row: Deanie, Taylor, Christy, Rosie, Erin, Lexi, Erin, Lacey, Sara
Front Row: Amy, me, Aimee, Tina, Casey, and Jessie
A few of us decided to hike up the massive dune. And then have a few little adventures. :)
Sara, Rosie, Lacey, Deanie, Jessie, Lexi, and I after hiking up the dune

Rosie, Deanie, Lacey, and Lexi walking sliding down the other side

Yep, we did it.

Isnt this just beautiful?

Deanie and Sara
Me and Deanie

the two Sara(h)'s
I sat down on top of this mountain and looked around me. God created all of this. I sat there singing "Indescribable" quietly to myself. God, you are indescribable.

 The whole earth is His.
"the Maker of heaven and earth, the sea, and everything in them-The Lord, who remainds faithful forever." Psalm 146:6

Lacey was sitting on this ledge and she turns around to me and says "Each wave is a little different. Some have spunk, some just kinda sizzle away. And each of the rocks, they are all different shapes and sizes. (silence) Kinda like us."

What Lacey said couldn't be more true. We are all different because God created each and every one of us exactly how He wanted us to be. That is so comforting and absolutely beautiful to me.

As we were sitting and admiring the beauty, Deanie, Rosie, and Sara went on a little adventure.
This is my view is Sara, Rosie, and Deanie from where I was sitting

We headed back over to the rest of the group and plopped right down.

Then we had a little cermony for Ryder, Lacey's dog who died suddenly this week.
Ryder loved popcorn, so it was only appropiate to write his name in the sand, cover it in popcorn, and wait for a wave to wash it away.

What an unexpected, but so amazing weekend. I am so blessed by all these AMAZING women who love the Lord that I have in my life. My car still isn't fixed yet, so that's kinda a downer, but it's okay. I have a great community of friends helping me out. :)

April 11, 2012

Our God is Greater

This song is an amazing song that I find myself singing in my head when I feel threats, when I feel pressure, or most of all, when I believe lies from Satan about myself or my abilities.

Our God by Chris Tomlin

"Into the darkness, You shine
Out of the ashes, we rise
There's no one like You
None like You"
These lyrics reveal truth about WHO God is. He is light, He shines into every crevasse, every hole. There is nothing he cannot fill completely.

Our God is greater
Our God is stronger
God, You are higher than any other
Our God is healer
Awesome in power
Our God, our God
The idea of God being a healer is always something I heard, "Yeah, God healed people in the bible.." but I never realized how much healing God is still doing in the hearts of his people today. I prayed for healing in my own life-to heal my past, to heal relationships, to heal my depression. God answered. He didn't only answer, He healed me. He changed me. He molded me like clay.

And if our God is for us
then who could ever stop us
And if our God is with us
Then what can stand against?

Nothing has the power to stand against God's power. He is higher. He is stronger. He is more capable. He is great. He is good. He is Lord of all.

Have you heard this song before? I'd LOVE to know how God has used it (or another song) to impact your life, your journey, and your relatonship with Him. 

April 9, 2012

News, Wonderful, News!

Remember my friend Emily(aka Nika)? Yep, shes pretty great. And remember this time I said I had really exciting news? Well, I'm finally going to tell you. I know, it's been killing you.
Emily is engaged! :) The wedding is going to be on August 11th, 2012...
So I went up to Portland for the weekend to visit, gawk at her beautiful vintage ring, do wedding planning, celebrate our risen Savior, and just have some giggling supportive bestie time.

On Friday night, we giggled, showed our dresses to each other, and went to bed early like two old ladies. On Saturday, the beautiful Oregon sun decided to show itself, so we got a yummy lunch at Whole Foods and headed to a park to enjoy it.
Me and Em (Nala and Nika)

My whole foods lunch: YUM
Bestie toesies

Everything is better in black and white <3
We sat on a beautiful quilt and I shared story after story about my trip to Utah. We talked faith, laughed, took pictures, and enjoyed just laying in the warm sun.
After some Vitamin D absorption, we drove to Bridgeport to register at The Container Store.
There is so much power in that little gun.

We came home, did major wedding organization, and then relaxed for the evening with some good ole' fashioned Veggies Tales. Emily conked out on me pretty quickly. I enjoyed "Twas the Night Before Easter" all by myself. I have no shame. I am 5 years old.

On Easter Sunday, we woke up early. Emily and her mom were singing at their church service. I played some Nertz while they practiced.
Emily's Mom and her singing at church
After finishing the service at Tualatin Four Square, we drove north to Solid Rock. We heard a great message about the power of the cross, sin being broken, and how anything really is possible through God. We watched many people come down isles to give their lives to Christ publicly through baptism.
We came back to Emily's house and were surprised by hidden Easter basket's with our names on them. Mine was hidden behind a big canister of flour. It took me forever to find it.
Me and Emily with our Easter Baskets
Later that afternoon, after going out for a super yummy BBQ lunch, we came home and did Easter egg dyeing.

We took advantage of the shaving cream we used to dye some eggs and had some fun with it outside.
It's obvious we worked at camp together

Me and Shannon (Emily's sister)
I had a really great weekend with the Curb family. I love these people.

And my other super exciting news is about this summer...

I'm working Mount Hermon-Kidder Creek as a Female Echo Counselor!
I'm going to be working with high school girls for the summer where they attend camp for two weeks at a time and learn about service and discipleship. So excited, but so very nervous for what God has planned for me!

And last, but NOT least, my bestie Brynn is finally moving her behind back to Oregon!

This is such an answer to prayer. I have been praying since we both left Corban that she would come back out here. I am so blessed to know that in June she is going to be just a hour away!

Such exciting things in my life right now. God is good and life is great! :)

Utah Trip Part 2

Tuesday, March 27th: This day is the greatest. Why, you ask? It was my 22nd birthday. On this day, we went to BYU first. We sat in on a concert and chapel service. The music was absolutely beautiful and I actually really enjoyed it. We got to walk around BYU campus a little bit. We went into one of the buildings on campus and met with some professors from the University. I don't remember the name's of the people we met, but we got a very extensive background story on Mormonism and the LDS Church. We got to ask a couple questions and then we had to leave.

Me and Caeli-we had to dress business casual for this day

Taylor, Me, and Allie (with a slight appearance from Grant behind us)-at BYU Chapel

BYU Orchresta
 After BYU, we went to Utah Valley University. At UVU, we got to engage with some students. I really enjoyed this time. I think this was my favorite conversation day. I met with a girl named Amber. She was a Mormon-convert. We just had a great conversation overall. After trying a Utah-must (Creamies) we were on the road to dinner. We ate dinner, and the restaurant was notified it was my birthday. I had to stand on my chair while the restaurant sang to me. Never done that before. Check-bucket list. Overall, it was a good day.

Taylor, Caeli, Amber (our Mormon friend), and Me
 Standing on my chair while the whole restaurant sang Happy Birthday to me
Wednesday, March 28th: I think this day was my favorite day of them all. The first thing we did today was go on a tour of LDS Humanitarian Services. It was so informative and I really enjoyed seeing how much the LDS Church is doing all around the world. It is hard to explain the whole system they have operating, but I was very impressed. These people, in general, know how to serve, to give. They take Jesus' mission of serving the poor and feeding the hungry very seriously. We got to walk through each area and see first hand what is going on. I would have loved to actually do some service, but I know there are many opportunities for that in Corvallis, too.

After the large tour, we then went to the Beehive House, also known as Brigham Young's House, for a large lunch with many Mormon leaders. I sat next to Elder Wilson, who is a member of the 70. We had a nice 3 course meal with different forks for each plate. I was so aware of my manners and which fork to use. I really enjoyed myself overall. I got a picture with Elder Wilson, but I don't know what happened to it. :( After a great lunch and hearing Elder Wilson share his testimony, we went on a grand tour of Temple Square.
Mallory, Peter, Kyle, Elder Wilson, Jade, myself, Caeli, and Greg(the leader of our trip)
At Temple Square, we first went into the South visitor center. There we saw a model which displayed the inside of the temple. (You gotta know we are all VERY curious). We were greeted by two sisters, (I can't remember their names for the life of me) one from Seattle, WA, and another from Australia. They are women serving on their mission at Salt Lake City, Utah-Temple Square. We got to hear first hand more stories about their faith, Joseph Smith, the Temple, and why things are the way they are for LDS faith. We visited the outside the Assembly Hall, inside the Tabernacle (where the Mormon Tabernacle choir sings), and ended our tour at the North Visitor Center (where we saw a GIANT status of Jesus).
The Sisters that lead our tour

Outside the Tabernacle (women from the Relief Society just got out of their meeting)

Inside the Tabernacle-Look at the huge pipes!

Me and Allie in the Tabernacle

Our whole group with a HUGE Jesus behind us
Next, we visited the Conference Center. We had great timing, because that weekend Salt Lake City was hosting the LDS General Conference at the Conference Center. The building is huge, and my favorite part was exploring the roof where we could see beautiful views of the mountains and the city.
In the Conference Room
One of the coolest parts of being at the Conference Building was getting to go on the roof. On the roof, we could see beautiful views of the whole city and of course, the beautiful mountains that I love about Utah.
Allie, me, Jade, and Caeli on the roof

Beautiful View of the City -Salt Lake Temple in center

The Group all together on the top of the Conference Center

Thursday, March 29th: We traveled two hours away to Utah State to meet with students and have more dialogue. I think in general this was my least favorite conversation. My table had Austin, me and Taylor and we were greeted by 3 Mormon students to dialogue with. In this conversation, we talked about the Godhead, or the Trinity, and the ideas about afterlife. I could get into this, but it is confusing to explain and I don't want to unfairly represent the opinions and beliefs of others. I sensed a lot of uncomfortable shiftyness at my table. To this day, I am still confused about how the conversation went about and exactly how to go about explaining what happened during it.
We spent the rest of the day on the road and then we came home (to the church we were staying at) and slept soundly.

Friday, March 30th: I enjoyed this day mostly because of the way it started. This was the only day I got to enjoy a hot shower. (Do you know how much of a big deal this is?!) It was a big deal; at least to me. Then we headed over to a local church to meet up with an old Polygamist women and a ministry run in Utah to help people get out of Polygamy. Hearing this woman's story was heartbreaking. I resonated so much with what she was saying. I know how it feels to be manipulated and controlled by someone who is meant to be close and loving to you. I was so proud of her all at the same time and the way she took her children out of it and started a life for herself.

Our team spent the afternoon at a local park, enjoying lunch and the sunshine of Utah. We headed back to the church, packed up our stuff, and then we hit the road for Boise.
The lovely ladies I had the pleasure of sharing a room with for a week:
Allie, Jade, Caeli, myself, Casey, Taylor, and Mallory
(P.S. please enjoy the giant Goliath behind us)

Saturday, March 31st: We arrived back home in Corvallis around 6pm and were greeted by downpours of rain, rain, and rain. Welcome back to the Northwest.