Friday, September 30, 2011

{.the beautiful unknown.}

A fragile matter…
this journey we call life.

Laughter turns to silence,
silence turns to smiles,
smiles turn upside down,
and frowns turn into
this thing we call strength.

Strength, courage, wisdom…
all things we gain from
the uncertainties we face.
The uncertainties that scare us.
The uncertainties that can consume us,
but in the end we learn to dominate.

We dominate not by our own power,
but by that of a Savior.
By that of friends.
Friends that last a lifetime…
and friends that change our life.

The unknown is always there waiting.
Its something that grows us
more and more every single day.
Something beautiful.
Not something to be afraid of.

If it weren’t for the unknown,
where would our faith be?
reliance on God?
The list goes on forever…

You see, these things don’t just come to us.
But rather they sneak into who we are
when we don’t even realize it.
When we’re in the middle of the unknown,
God is building our character.
Building who we are…
who He wants us to be.

Don’t lose heart.
Though the days are long,
God is changing us.
growing us.
teaching us.

We can’t always see it,
But it is a beautiful thing
the way He chips away and
molds us into who He wants us to be.

“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.” 2 Corinthians 4:16

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

{.silence speaks louder.}

I feel like silence is often louder than words. I feel like it would be easier if things could just go on as they were. But then again, maybe silence is sometimes for the best. I don't understand how or why, but its something I've had to come to terms with a lot lately. Nothing hurts me worse than having someone walk away...but its been something I've had to deal with every morning when I wake up. I have to constantly remind myself to change my perspective and stop caring so much. I feel really silly sometimes caring about things when I know I'm the only person in the world who cares. So why can I not stop thinking about it? I shouldn't care. (but I do.) End of story.

...well, not quite yet. I do want to say that I am very thankful for a loving God who will never walk away. When I am burdened by the loss of friends, I know I can always look to God and He will be there. AND I still have a lot of friends and family here for me and I know I am blessed.

God STILL knows what He is doing. I really started to believe that about a month ago when God used circumstances and certain friends to show me that. If I believed that God knew what He was doing a month ago, I have no reason not to believe it today. Be my friend or don't...God knows what I need when I need it and I have no reason to let it bother me. That's all folks.

Goodnight, and God bless. =)

"So do not fear, for I am with you..." Isaiah 41:10

Sunday, September 25, 2011

{.a fine line.}

how do I find balance?

do I {forget}

or do I {hope}

it's a [fine] line...

and I'm not sure

on          which          side

I'm supposed to stand...

Friday, September 23, 2011

{.all consuming.}

That is the question I've been dwelling on this past week.

Last weekend I was reading through a book I've been going through along with my devotions. It talked about how God should be consuming our entire being. It's so easy for us to replace God in our hearts and in our thoughts. Even a really good thing can become a sin if we put it in front of Christ. Reading this was very convicting because often times I find myself caring about something so much that I begin looking at it without God in the picture. Loving something or caring about something is by no means a bad thing...but it should never consume us so much that it begins to replace our awesome God!

This past week we had Will Galkin here for Heart Conference. Every day he spoke on something that I was able to relate to my question, "what consumes me?" One day he even made the statement, "even a good thing can become a bad thing when it becomes a ruling thing." Umm pretty much exactly what I read a few short days before. Another one of those moments where I think, okay God, I get it! I need to completely change my thinking. I need to get my focus off of ME and get it on GOD. I wrote the following prayer down during one of the's personal, but I want to share it so you can see the work God is doing.

"God, You are worth more than I can imagine. To not give you my entire self would be beyond selfish. I want to give YOU my whole heart. I so easily give pieces of my heart to things of this world. Things and people who can NEVER satisfy. I want YOU to consume me. Please change me from the inside out. I need a new perspective to get my thoughts and desires off of this world, but to desire You more and more every day of my life. I want to bring You glory in my thoughts and actions ALWAYS. It is for you ALONE that I live. It is for You that I should do each task of every day. Help me to be changed into a woman of God who lives for You!"

So basically I'm taking baby steps to get to where I need to be, but by the grace of God I pray I will get there. I went on a "facebook fast" this week which I highly recommend to do if you ever need to get refocused on what really matters. God has been teaching me so much this week and I wish I had the time to share everything. All I can say is that God is so good and I am truly wanting to be changed from the inside out and to be completely consumed by Him. I am on this earth to live for God, not to live for me. He deserves all of me, not just bits and pieces. Simple. as. that.

Friday, September 16, 2011

they are precious in His sight...

So tonight I was watching the guys' kick some butt in their soccer game when I had the delight of meeting a new friend. First of all I would like to mention that my new friend is 9 years old. =)

I cherish opportunities like these. These friendships are usually just temporary, but they are so beyond precious to me. Well...this little girl's name is Katie and when she asked if she could sit with me of course I said yes! We talked for a good hour about anything that came to mind. She told me about school, soccer, how she loves to make up songs, how she wants to come to Northland some day, how she wants to be a mom when she grows up, and how she loves to braid soon as she said she loved to braid hair I offered to let her practice on mine, which I believe made her day. =) {...I find that just about every little girl I meet LOVES braiding hair.} Well an hour came and went...I gave her a hug and went on my way.

God seems to give me opportunities like this often and I am so thankful He does! Meeting Katie tonight reminded me of the time in New York this summer as I was waiting for the Fourth of July fireworks to start. I happened to sit by a precious little girl named Leah and we talked for about an hour. She introduced me to her mom and it felt like I knew this little girl my whole life although we had just met.

These moments make me all the more excited to be a mom someday. Whether that be by having one of my own...or by being a foster mom and/or adopting...FINGERS CROSSED AND LORD WILLING! For as long as I can remember God has put it on my heart to adopt and take in children in foster care. I am getting very impatient for the time to come when I am finally able to fulfill this calling!!! And even if God doesn't allow for it to happen right away, I am hoping to someday work in the social work field with adoption or foster care and I am very excited to do this as well. I have such a burden for kids and I love doing whatever I can to make an impact in their lives for Jesus Christ. There are so many children out there who need to know His love!

I am so thankful God has given me so many opportunities to work with kids. I was lucky enough to be a nanny for three beautiful girls the last eight months (whom I miss dearly!), I have been blessed with several young cousins, and I am often blessed with opportunities like the ones mentioned above! Little children are so precious to me and such a beautiful blessing from God. They never cease to make my heart melt time and time again. =)

"And whoever welcomes a little child like this in my name welcomes me."
Matthew 18:5

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

all things work together for good...

I've always been one to ponder the "what-ifs" in life. (I think wayyy too much sometimes.)

Last night I took a stroll to go check my mail and as I was walking back I couldn't stop watching the flashes of lightning up above. The combination of lightning, stars, and the moon shining through the clouds looked so awesome. I couldn't help it...I laid down in the grass and just watched for awhile. The whole time I was just thinking about how powerful God is. He is the creator and is in control of everything we see and experience...from the annoying little bats who eventually began to disrupt my pondering, to the magnificent flashes of lightning filling sky. It was just another reminder to me that if He can control things like that, He can control all of the "what-ifs" in my life. One of the biggest things I've been learning lately is to let go, and let God take care of things. I am finally getting to a place where I don't need to worry about every little thing that happens. I'm realizing that if I am truly trusting in God and doing what He asks of me, He will give me exactly what I need. Maybe not always what I want, but ALWAYS what I need.

So basically, no more dwelling on "what-ifs." If God takes things away, if God wants me to wait, if God makes things harder than I feel they need to be...I'll just go with it. Everything will fall into place perfectly if I let go and put it in God's hands. He wants me to love Him, obey Him, and serve Him while I'm waiting...and that's exactly what I plan on doing.

"And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God." ...Romans 8:28.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

weekend of spontaneity.

This weekend was...well...exactly what I needed. =)

Once upon a time I traveled to Green Bay with some darling friends for a much needed girls' day out...
I got to make a pit stop to see my wonderful sister. I miss her a lot...and she gives great hugs. =)
We then spent the afternoon shopping...which included playing dress up in the mall. I don't know about you, but I am definitely a kid at heart...and I don't think there's anything wrong with that. We filled our bellies at Red Robin and then made our way back to the woodlands...of course we stopped to take pictures...and to get fraps...but we eventually made our way back! It helped to have Jamie girl sitting by my side screaming along to Taylor Swift's crazy, but somewhat relatable ideas about life...
So that concludes day one.

I started off by going to church. I'm thinking about trying a new church this far I'm loving it.
The message this morning was awesome, to say the least. We went through Deuteronomy 8 and discussed how God puts us through adversities so we can grow closer to Him in a whole new way. Here are a few scattered thoughts I wrote down during the message...
~We are to change our perspective...stop looking at the storm you're in, stop looking at the shore ahead, and start looking at GOD.
~We are to humble ourselves and let God do His work HIS way!
~If we truly want to know Him, we will stick with Him and never give up.
~The path He brings us on is not's God's way of teaching us what He wants us to learn.
~God changes us today so we can be used for His glory tomorrow.
~Love Him so all else in the world dims.
~When God puts you through adversities will you still love Him? Trust Him? Obey Him?

I would totally write down my entire page and a half of notes but,'s a page and half. =)
God definitely spoke through Pastor Phillips today and I know He spoke to others I know as well!
God is good. Enough said.

Well after church, us girls decided to take a million pictures on a random train stopped near school. Is it illegal to climb on trains? Hmm...I really don't know...haha
We then had a picnic at Reflection Lake which turned into 3 lovely hours of just relaxing...and lots and lots of laughs. P.S. I love sitting by the lake with my feet in the water and just watching the clouds roll it love it love it.
To end the day, we sang my beautiful Irish roommate, Leah, happy birthday as she made a wish and blew out the candles. The day is now over and me and Lindsey are sitting here attempting to get some work done...while finding other fun things to do to keep us from going crazy. =)  Honestly, this weekend was so awesome that I kind of forgot I was in school and had homework to do. Oops!
Well goodnight all! God bless!!! =)

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

to be selfless.

I have about a million note cards up on my wall with different verses and quotes, and this afternoon one in particular got me thinking.

"Love demands that I learn how to focus my attention on the needs of those I love." -John Powell

Right away I thought it over and all I could come up with was pretty much exactly what it said...basically loving my friends and family means I not only need to say that I love them, but I actually need to focus on their needs. Easy enough, right? But then I thought about it again and it hit me. I need to focus on THEIR needs...more than I focus on MY OWN. I realized I really need to learn what selfless love means. So being the geek I am, I looked it up. =P

self-less [self-lis]
having little or no concern for oneself, especially with regard to fame, position, money, etc.; unselfish

love [luhv]
unselfish loyal and benevolent concern for the good of another

I can't count the times I have been selfish in my friendships and relationships. I wish I could go back and change all the times I didn't care for others enough to put their needs in front of my own. It's so easy to see what I'm not getting out of a friendship or relationship (whether with a friend or with a family member) and get upset...because sometimes I forget the world doesn't revolve around me. I don't always think I'm doing anything wrong, but when I look back I realize just how selfish I was being.

I want to love by Christ's example. Of course He wants us to love Him in return, but the point is, He loves us no matter what. No matter how many times we hurt Him, no matter how many mistakes we make...He gives us more than we could ever ask for and cares for us day in and day out, whether He's getting anything out of it or not.

Can I love like that? Can I put my needs aside and care for others in whichever way is best for THEM? That's what I want. I don't want my selfishness to ruin the relationships God blesses me with. I can't promise I will succeed, but that's my goal.


"Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves." -Romans 12:9-10

Sunday, September 4, 2011

His love is forever...

I find abundant comfort in knowing that I will never be God's second choice.
Ever feel like you're just not good enough? I'm sure we all have at one point.

It's easy to rely on people.
God gives us each other for a reason.
He gives us relationships and friendships to make us make us stronger.
But how easy it is to rely on the people God brings into our life!
Sometimes God chooses to put people in our life for a short time.
                  Ecclesiastes 3:1 "For everything there is a season, and a time for every
                  matter under heaven."

People won't always be around...but luckily, God will.

God loved us yesterday. God loves us today. God will love us tomorrow...and every day after that.
And what's best is that He loves us all the same. We never have to worry about being better than anyone else.
Sure we should strive to be the best we can be, but God won't love us less if we fail now and then.

I know that it hurts when it feels like people are ripped away.
To be ignored by the ones we care about.
To not be their first choice.

But I continue to look to Christ.
Even when I feel like I will never be good there is always someone who is one step ahead of me.
I belong to Christ. He wants me for all eternity. And He will never turn His face from me.
He loves each of us as if we were the only person in the world.
The God I serve is an unfailing, loving God and He is the only one we can ever fully rely on in this crazy life.

"How precious is your steadfast love, O God! The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings." Psalm 36:7

Friday, September 2, 2011

A Heavy Heart...

So today I've had a heavy heart.

I wish I had all the answers. I wish I could fix everything. ...That's just me.

Unfortunately, God hasn't given any of us the ability to fix everything. That's HIS job.

Today my heart is honestly just...I don't know...sad I guess.

I'm happy, I really am. I promise. My heart is just a little sore from the roller coaster it's been on.

I think God keeps us on a never ending roller coaster...just to keep life interesting. =P

I feel like important things...and people...just keep being taken away. And it's really not fun.

I hate knowing when something is for the best, but it's definitely not the way you want it to happen.

You can have all the peace in the world about it...but it can still be so hard.

I'm so glad I have my God on this roller coaster with me...holding my hand through the craziest parts.

I have faith that God has amazing things in store for my life if I continue to trust Him and walk with Him.

But one thing I need to remember is that i AM human...and I can't always pretend like everything is okay.

Today has been a hard day...I already admitted that. But I'm trying to remember this...and if you ever have a hard day you should remember it too. =)

God wants us to GO TO HIM when we are feeling helpless. Not just keep it locked inside.

We can't always have it all together. So go ahead...cry, scream, do whatever you need to do...

Give your heavy heart over to God...don't try to carry it alone.

My prayer for anyone reading this is that you seek God for strength each day. Don't try to pretend like you have it all together. I find myself doing that sometimes and eventually it gets to be too much to hold it all inside. Life is crazy...I don't think anyone needs to be told that! It's full of heartache, disappointments, complications, etc. Part of me wishes we didn't have to go through all that, but then I think of all the things God teaches me through trials and it makes it so worth it. My heart is still sad, but I know God is taking care of it and I'll be okay. If your heart is heavy, give it to God. He will take precious care of it as doubt. =)

1 Peter 5:7...Give ALL your worries and cares to God, for he cares about you.

God bless... =)