Sunday, October 16, 2011

10 Years!

After enjoying a wonderful fall break at home, I came back to school thinking I would have an easy, relaxing short week. It turned into one of the craziest weeks I've had in a while!

First off, I woke up on Thursday morning ready to start a day that I knew would be very busy. I had two midterms the next day that I had to study for (one being all short answer, which is just wrong, might I add),  and I walk outside to have my car vandalized. It wasn't any major vandalism, but still, someone had the nerve to disrespect property that was not theirs. Thankfully, it only left some scratches on my car that I am hoping will buff out. I guess I will find out over Thanksgiving break! It didn't particularly bother me at first, because stuff like that happens in a college town all the time, but the more I thought about it, the more worked up I got. I just couldn't believe that someone would do that, especially to someone they did not know (I'm assuming the individual does not know me, but if I find out they do, they will be detailing my car...for free.) Then I went to class and came back home for lunch, as I was walking out the door I hit my foot up against my couch and break my pinky toe. I would have laughed at my luck, but was in too much pain to do that. After my last class of the day, I came home to study for my mid-term exams that I had the next day. My campus ministry was meeting that night and I help set up, so I left early to go do that and decided to leave after praise and worship was over since I had so much studying to do.
As I was leaving the meeting, I felt so discouraged about how my day had gone and was really believing that God would make good come from all of it, despite how awful I felt. Right as I was about to walk out of the building, my friend Kathleen stopped me. She said that she had something really important to tell me. She looked like she was tearing up. She said that she was standing behind me in praise and worship and she saw me raise my hands (sometimes I raise my hands despite if I'm feeling anything... Jesus still deserves praise even when I don't feel like doing it). She told me that she felt the Holy Spirit come upon her and speak to her about me. He told her that I was going to be a strong woman, taking a stand for what is right and challenging people on their beliefs of what they think christianity should be. She also saw me as a great mother. I always find it funny when people tell me that I am going to be a good mother, because quite frankly, I'm probably the worst baby-sitter on the face of the planet. No lie, I really just don't like it. Love kids, but I hate babysitting. It was nice to think about all that I have to look forward too in my life.

 I now believe that I have finally learned what it's like to "laugh at my future." The Bible refers to the Proverbs 31 woman as a woman who can "smile/laugh at her future" because she knows who holds it.

Fast forward to yesterday. I was driving down the road with my roommate, Brittany, to go meet our other roommate, Lauren and her fiance, Kris, to go to the state fair. As I was riding along talking to Brittany, the thought hit me. Thursday, the day where all that stuff happened, was my 10 year anniversary of saying yes to Jesus. No wonder my day went bad, the enemy did not want me to remember to celebrate all of the wonderful things that had happened in the last 10 years.
October 13, 2001 was the day I officially surrendered my life to Christ and have never looked back. I had said a prayer to be saved before that date, but I feel like that night I truly understood what it was like to follow after Christ and serve Him whole heartedly. The last 10 years have been the craziest, but the best years of my life. I have experienced overwhelming blessings and heavy growing pains, but I would not trade one minute of one day for the entire world. My life has been radically changed by Christ's love. He gave it all for me, He made the ultimate sacrifice by dying for me when I did not deserve anything but death and to be eternally separated from Him and His love.

10 years ago my life changed forever. I will NEVER forget that day. It's the most important day of my life, it will always be the most important day of my life. More important than my wedding or the birth of my children. I am looking forward to the next 10 years, I believe God has some amazing things in store for me. He will continue to teach me and mold me into the woman He wants me to be.

I have decided to follow Jesus, no turning back, no turning back. :)

Friday, October 14, 2011

When roomies have a bad day...

I'll update again tomorrow, but tonight there's something important I need to talk about!!

My roommate, Brittany, updated her blog and is feeling kind of down about nursing school. She has worked extremely hard and isn't feeling that great about herself. Therefore, here goes 10 reasons why I think Brittany is awesome!

1. She is WAY smarter than she thinks!

2. She has a beautiful smile!

3. Her laugh is contagious and filled with joy!

4. She always has the prettiest outfits!

5. She has a huge heart for helping people!

6. She is going to be a wonderful nurse and will succeed in her profession!

7. She is beautiful inside and out!

8. She can cook a mean meatloaf!

9. She is fun to be around! I love being around her!

10. I believe, whole heartedly, that once she realizes how wonderful, smart and beautiful she really is, she will be unstoppable! She is a child of the King of Kings- a true princess! I am proud to call her my sister.

There ya go, 10 things about Brittany. She's freakin' awesome. End of story!

These are the verses that I am claiming over her life right now :)

An excellent wife who can find?
She is far more precious than jewels.
The heart of her husband trusts in her,
and he will have no lack of gain.
She does him good, and not harm,
all the days of her life.
She seeks wool and flax,
and works with willing hands.
She is like the ships of the merchant;
she brings her food from afar.
She rises while it is yet night
and provides food for her household
and portions for her maidens.
She considers a field and buys it;
with the fruit of her hands she plants a vineyard.
She dresses herself with strength
and makes her arms strong.
She perceives that her merchandise is profitable.
Her lamp does not go out at night.
She puts her hands to the distaff,
and her hands hold the spindle.
She opens her hand to the poor
and reaches out her hands to the needy.
She is not afraid of snow for her household,
for all her household are clothed in scarlet.
She makes bed coverings for herself;
her clothing is fine linen and purple.
Her husband is known in the gates
when he sits among the elders of the land.
She makes linen garments and sells them;
she delivers sashes to the merchant.
Strength and dignity are her clothing,
and she laughs at the time to come.
She opens her mouth with wisdom,
and the teaching of kindness is on her tongue.
She looks well to the ways of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children rise up and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
“Many women have done excellently,
but you surpass them all.”
Charm is deceitful, and beauty is vain,
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
Give her of the fruit of her hands,
and let her works praise her in the gates.
                                   -Proverbs 31

Now my other 2 roomies need to get a blog so I can brag about them too!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Fall Retreat

Every fall, Every Nation Campus Ministries has a regional retreat for the colleges in North Carolina. It's always a fun time to come together and meet new people from different schools while encountering Jesus together! I always look forward to getting away for a while, getting rid of the distractions, no computer, no cell phone service and just enjoying my Savior and the wonderful people that I am with!
We had a variety of speakers and we focused on the kingdom of God. The verse that the weekend was based on was out of Matthew.

"But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you." -Matthew 6:33

Something that struck me most this weekend was the concept of righteousness... being in right standing with God.

"Pursuing righteousness is more valuable than sacrifice." Jesus wants us to be in right standing with Him. We can sacrifice things and perform a lot of works in His name, but ultimately He just wants a relationship with us. He wants to know us intimately and spend time with us all of the time!

"Jesus wants all of your junk. He gave His love freely, take it! He wants to see you enjoy it, not stress out about how to repay it."
This quote probably spoke to me most all weekend. Jesus gave His love as a gift and He wants us to take it and find joy in it. He doesn't want to see us stressing out performing work after work to attempt to repay Him for something that is priceless. He wants us to enjoy the freedom that He gave us and to be in relationship with Him.

"Don't ignore the stuff in your heart, He wants that too."
Sometimes we try to hide what's really in our heart by staying busy with schedules and doing things to try to earn Christ's love. The thing is, He couldn't possibly love us anymore than He does now. He wants to know the things we keep deep inside of our hearts, even the nasty junk that we are ashamed of. He wants to know everything about us and help us work through things. :)

Those were just a few of many things that were talked about this weekend.
Something I am going to focus more on doing is walking by the Spirit. I have come so far in this area of my walk with the Lord, but I have so much more to learn! God has my future laid out perfectly, just for me. Nothing that happens is a surprise to Him. I am looking forward to growing deeper in His love and learning to trust Him more and more each day! The Holy Spirit is powerful! I am anxious to see how I will continue to learn to walk by the Spirit each day. It will take time and discipline. My heart is to rid me of myself each day... humbling myself before the Lord and let Him take complete and total control of every aspect of my life!

I got to hang out with some amazing brothers and sisters in Christ! Here are a few pictures from our weekend adventure together!
There was a beautiful sunset at Camp Dixie as we arrived on Friday evening!
Two of my new friends admiring the sunset. haha!
Some of the most beautiful ladies I know! I have the joy of going to school with them and calling them my sisters in Christ!
They were all into "artistic poses" and interpretive dancing
The infamous "blob!" Too bad it was too cold to see anyone get launched off of it!

While waiting to go into our evening session, these lovely ladies decided to sing! I wish I would've gotten the entire thing on video. It was great!

The whole ECU gang! I love each of these people dearly! They are my brothers and sisters in Christ! 

For me, the best part of this weekend was getting away and resting in God's presence. I don't believe that you always have to have a huge revelation from God when you're at a big conference like this. I just enjoyed being in His presence and around people that I love!