Friday, May 27, 2011

moving on

This is going to be a lot of random thoughts- not surprising if you know me at all. That's just how my brain works. But I'm talking really sporadic (like ranging from One Tree Hill to yearning for God's word to moving to Africa).

First (and of least -actually zero- importance). I've been TiVo-ing One Tree Hill at my dad's because it gives me something to watch (even though I've seen every episode at least once) when I'm here dog-sitting. I'm done for now but will be back for two weeks soon. Anyway, one episode a day comes on the Soap Net, and I got back today to look at it and it has recorded FIVE episodes already today. Talk about some excitement.

Next, I had lunch with a dear friend of mine Thursday before she headed off to Frontier, and we had one of the best heart-to-hearts I've had with anyone in a long time. For the first time, I'm ready to leave the mess of this past semester behind me and move on. I'm ready to seek what God has been teaching me through the trials and work on loving others as He would. I'm ready to restore friendships and focus on Christ. I'm ready to find joy and strength in Him. I'm ready to forgive.

Lastly, I've only just begun reading Radical, but I can already tell it's going to change my life. I hope I never forget these truths that so often slip my mind in day-to-day life. I am thankful for the opportunity to talk about this book and my heart with Amy by the pool yesterday. She told me that I should put the book down if I wasn't ready to head to Africa because this book is just going to strengthen that desire... and it already is.

Join me in praying for my sweet, sweet friends that are leading kids at Frontier this week, as well as praying for my high school friends and theirs that they are taking. I can't wait to hear all about their experiences. Pray that hearts will be changed and that kids will hear and respond to the gospel in a new way.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Well, as usual, on Sunday it seemed like our pastor was speaking directly to ME. For some reason I think I'm still emotionally, physically, spiritually tired from the past semester. I'm so thankful for some time to rest, but in that, I need to be resting in a way and place that I can hear God's whisper. I need a word from Him- to be filled by Him and to know what's next. After the sermon Pastor Scott asked a preacher from GHANA to pray over our church. How cool! And as you can imagine, it made me crave being in Africa. It's hard for me to be in school feeling like I'm not accomplishing anything to further the Kingdom. I know this means I need to find my purpose HERE and NOW in this time of preparation for what's next... because there is so much I can be doing right here in Knoxville, but I'm so distracted by the thought of going to Africa- back to Zimbabwe or maybe to Ghana to work alongside this sweet pastor and his wife.

The pastor was born into royalty- the son of a king. One of the servant boys loved Jesus so much that this pastor, even as a kid, realized there was something different about him so he asked the servant about it. Then the soon-to-be pastor came to know Jesus, left the life of royalty, and planted a church that now has 25 churches that branched off from it. Amazing.

It's evident that for now God wants me here. If that's where He wants me, then I'm happy being here... but I don't want to be content. I want to keep searching, keep seeking, keep running hard after the Lord and pursuing His plans for me.

Starting a week from today, I'll be getting up around 6 for Spanish at 8 every day for the rest of the summer (weekends excluded, of course). So for now, I will take full advantage of sleeping til 9 every day!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Man oh man. Today is the first day of dog-sitting for my dad, and I'm already over it! Not trying to complain, and I know this is un-American, but... I don't think I'm much of a dog person. Definitely not much of a licking, jumping, hyper dog person. Shadow is fine... most of the time, but NOT when you have to be in the same bed as him. I literally did not fall asleep until after 4 last night because he wouldn't stop moving, licking, coughing, sneezing, and trying to share my pillow with me. No thank you. Oh but I HAVE to let him on the bed. Dad's orders.

Anyway, we made it through the night, somehow. He woke me up early and then the smoke detector started beeping every 5 minutes because the battery is dying. You know that high-pitched shrill noise they make? Yep, that's the one. But I couldn't figure out what it was in my state of delusion due to 3 1/2 hours of sleep. Eventually I figured it out, but it's much too high up on the wall for me to dismantle it to change the batteries. So unless someone changes it for me... it's going to be a long 6 days at this house. Well, even longer than it was already going to be without the beeping!

The plus side to staying at my dad's is the pool... now it just needs to be pretty out! Pleeeease.

Today I went to pick up Olivia from school with Shadow by my side. I decided that I wouldn't feel as silly running down Westland with a dog, so I took him along. That's right people, I ran. This is BIG. I kind of thought I was going to collapse on the side of the road- that might be even more embarrassing if someone saw me passed out than if they actually saw me attempting to run. I'm not sure.

Too much words. Not enough pictures- haven't had any in a while. So I'll add some now! Haven't taken pictures in forever so I'll have to steal from friends.

The day of the tornadoes- taking cover in the bottom of the lib.

Christine came to visit!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

End of the year leadership.

Just Dance party at Lauren's. Boy do I miss living with that girl.

Jamie made us have a CAK girl leaders photo shoot in Market Square. I'll leave out the most embarrassing ones.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

It's been a loooong time. At least for me. But I HAD to do well on finals, so I spent way too much time in the library. Actually studying. Sounds crazy, huh?

Let's see. Finals were hard. I actually did well on them and made the grades I needed for the most part. My overall grades are much lower than I would like, but... it's over! And IT'S SUMMER!

Since finals-
  • Matt has come back to Knoxville, and it is so so great to have him back. Even though I've sadly only seen him once. I had some people over to my dad's to swim and eat to welcome Matt back, and it was a great start to summer to all be together!
  • One of my sweet friends from Farragut passed away in a car accident. I'm so sad that she is gone but so glad that she is finally happy and free of the struggles and addictions she faced here on Earth. Some high school friends got together and went to the funeral. It was great to spend time with them but sad that it had to be in those circumstances. Can't wait to spend more time with them this summer.
  • Last night Jessie, Nicole, and I made cake balls- they aren't pretty (at all), but they sure are tasty- and then attempted to watch a movie. They both fell asleep.
  • Today I need to clean my room. It's a wreck. It's the first rainy day of summer so it's a good time for it, but somehow I'm sure it still won't happen.
I'm sure other things have happened, but that's all I can think of right now.

Happy summer!

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Things I want to blog about...

...but don't have time (so I will make a list and hopefully get back to these topics within the week):

-my incredible mom and a day dedicated to awesome moms like her!
-the loss of a dear friend from high school
-Matt being home

So much happening this weekend, but unfortunately I must keep studying. Almost done.

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Open Me.

Would You open up my eyes, so I can see
Would You open up my ears, so I can hear
Would You open up my mind, so I can know
Would You open up my heart, so I could love You more

I want to serve You, my God
I want to give You everything
I want to serve You, my King, yeah
I want to serve You, my Lord
I want to give You everything, yeah

Here I am with my arms open wide
Asking for You to come up, up inside
Won't You make me new, won't You make me true
Jesus, won't You make me like You, oh

Will You touch my eyes so I can see
Will You touch my ears so I can hear
Will You touch my mind so I can know
Will You touch my heart so I can love You more

--Shawn McDonald

“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

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Stolen from Meredith's blog

"I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that." -Martin Luther King, Jr.