Looking Back

Currently I should be writing a paper for grad school, but instead I am writing a blog and reflection on the past. So be prepared this could get a little ramble-y or long winded.

Fall is here, my favorite time of year!  Days like today take me back to Bowling Green and visits to Jackson’s Orchard for pumpkin picking, apple cider slushes and fun with friends.  I would love for a day to travel with a group of college friends for some fall fun.

I was also thinking today about how I graduated three years ago (in a couple months)! Crazy.  Seems like yesterday I was walking The Hill at WKU and spending my days in Tate Page & Cherry, hanging out at the BCM, making late night runs to GADS and surrounded by friends. I miss getting to pour my heart into the college life and having a community of friends all around me.  I miss cramming four girls into a tiny apartment with only one bathroom and dorm floods. I miss teaching family groups and Dgroups.  I miss going to football and basketball games and cheering on the TOPS!  I miss studying at baseball games, Spencers and the library.  I miss Mancinos, Griffs, Kyoto, Buckhead and Linzies!  I miss welcome retreat, FOCUS and road trips. I miss spring break and college mission trips.  I miss my jobs at the testing center and at LHBC.  I miss my small group of girls from LH and can’t believe that they are all freshman in college now!  There are days when I want to go back to college and enjoy it all over again.

Looking at pictures from my FFG kiddos who are Seniors in college and my Small Group girls who are Freshman in college I am blessed by all the Lord has taught me and the lives the Lord has let me pour into and has allowed to pour into me.  I am so blessed in the life I am in now and know that I will look back and reflect on this time in the years to come.

I am going to wrap this up although I could probably write all day about college and things of the past that I miss, but even though I miss the past, I love the present and am choosing to live here!

30 Day Blog Challenge – Learning

What have I been learning this week?

The Lord has been teaching me several things this week.  The first is that I need to have friends in my life who are willing to ask the hard questions and who I feel like I can talk to about anything and everything.  I need to rely on these people and not feel like I have to keep everything to myself or do everything myself.  He has also been teaching me the value of how to let others in, this is a hard one, because I don’t like to trust people, even though I know I should.

The importance of family is another thing the Lord has been teaching me.  I don’t know what I would do without my family.  At times the frustrate me and I get upset with them, but I love them and I think I need to show them that more.  I have taken advantage of the fact that I have a mom and dad who are still together and who love me and support me even when I do things that they don’t understand.

The Lord has also been teaching me, the importance of knowing him.  Not just in one way, as Lord, but in many ways, as creator, lord, all knowing … The list could go on and on.

 

I could probably list more about things that the Lord is teaching me, but I will leave it at the importance of friends, family, and knowing His name.

4ths of the Past

The Fourth of July has never been a big celebration holiday for me and my family.  When I was younger my aunt had a neighbor that would get a permit to set off some of the big fireworks and we would watch them some years, but it was not a big deal.  As I got older it seemed like I was never around on the fourth.  Not on purpose, but some how the camps I went to and trips I took always happened then.  Here are some of my July Fourth memories.

As a very little kid – like 6 and under I would go down to the Bay in CB, OR and watch the fireworks with my dad from the train tracks.  Oh how I miss living near the water!

After Sophomore Year of High School I was selected to be a part of the Lions Club All-State Band.  We spent several days in Murray practicing before hitting the road in a couple buses.  We were on our way to New England. Boston to be exact.  We were marching in the Lions Club International Parade.  This parade happens every year in different places.  This parade is one of the largest in the world.  It was so awesome to march in front of crowds from all over the world playing “My Old Kentucky Home” and hearing people from China, Europe, the States, and all over sing along with our playing.  The Fourth of July was the day we left Boston and we had stopped in Dayton, OH and watched fireworks on the television from our hotel lobby.

After Junior Year of High School I was at the Governor’s Scholar Program at Morehead State University.  It rained on the fourth that year and we didn’t really get to watch the fireworks.  We ended up in the gym watching a movie and eating ice cream (i think).  It was a fun and different way to spend the day!

After Sophomore Year of College I was about intern with LHBC’s student ministry and was asked to go to Baltimore, MD to chaperone a high school mission trip.  This was probably the most entertaining and crazy Independence Day that I have ever had.  We drove to Baltimore on the 3rd and had a “free day” on the 4th, before starting to work with the Village Church on the 5th.  So we planned our free day to be spent in our nation’s capital.  We left in the morning and rode the Subway to D.C. where we went to the capitol building, the air and space museum, walked around, and had a ton of fun fighting the HUGE crowds (enter sarcasm).  It was crazy!!  We were staying for the fireworks and then getting back on the subway back to Baltimore.  And here is where things get kinda crazy. We watched the fireworks from the street near the White House and then headed to the nearest subway entrance.  We got underground and a nice man gave us directions, but either he didn’t really know what he was talking about or thought we were heading somewhere else, because he told us to get on a train headed the opposite direction of Baltimore.  Once we realized we were on the wrong train we planned to get off at the next stop.  From here the chaos ensued.  Our group of about 20 split up into 4 smaller groups, and not on purpose and to make it all better, one group didn’t have an adult with it, because one of our groups included me, the other female chaperone, and one student. Oh yeah, and I had everyone’s subway passes (so that none of the students would lose them), and I was the last one to get back to the station in Baltimore, which meant no one else in the groups that got back close to an hour before me couldn’t get out of the subway station.  Crazy crazy day and I have vowed never to take students to D.C. on July 4th.  Especially when it was my first time there!

Summer after Junior Year of College I spent the fourth with my family in Indy celebrating the wedding of my aunt.  She had gotten married on an island somewhere and then came back and we had the reception on July 4th.  This was the one weekend that I spent with my family because the 4 weeks prior I had been with my Acts 1:8 team and when I got back I was headed out to Haiti for a few weeks.  There were no fireworks for this kid that year.

And now for my plans this year…

This Year I am spending the morning/early afternoon relaxing at home with my two dogs.  I have been blogging like a crazy person, watching the marathons of OTH and Cake Boss, and just enjoying the time off from work.  Later I am going to celebrate with EBrew and her family plus a couple of our friends.  I am beyond excited because I haven’t seen EBrew since June 1st of last year when I left for 1:8 and right before she left to live in Honduras.  There was no question in my mind when she asked me to spend this time with her family!

 

Well that is what July Fourth has looked like in my life.  Do you have any fun stories from July Fourth Celebrations?

Perspective

Things in my life have really been put into perspective recently.

Not even 10 minutes after I found out about the job I mentioned in the last post, I found out my sister had malignant melanoma on her back. We found out today that it isn’t melanoma, but some type of cells that look and act just like it and could turn into it. That being said we think Carol is out of the danger zone now and that the doctors were able to remove everything. She will have to keep a watch on things though. Praise the Lord that they found it early!

Then today I found out one of the girls I am friends with from college has lymphoma. They have found lumps on her lung and heart. While I don’t know wverything surrounding the situation, I do know that they are talking about chemo sometime soon.

All this to say that we don’t know what tomorrow holds. We aren’t even promised a tomorrow. I often forget that and take what I have for granted, but in the events of the last 5 days I have learned to live each day to the fullest and never take for granted what I have been given.

Praying for my sissy and friend and hoping that everyone can remember to live everyday to its fullest!

Struggles

So as of late I have been struggling a lot with where I am at in my life.  It all started as I transitioned from college, living in BG, having some amazing friends, and being connected to a wonderful body of believers at LHBC to living in Lville, being a Master’s student, not having a church, or a friend group.

 

As I made this transition I hit a low place in my walk with Christ.  I stopped having a quiet time, I stopped opening the Word, stopped praying, and didn’t really want to do any of those things.  I was going to different churches trying to find one to call “home” but believing that I would never find one that could be seen as a home. I missed LHBC, the people and the ability I had to serve there and that is where I wanted to be.  I had become very close-minded.

 

Not only had I become close minded towards churches, but also people.  I didn’t think there could be people that cared about me like the ones I had left in BG.  I didn’t think that there were friends to be had and I didn’t really make an effort to make any.

 

Needless to say my close-mindedness had made my life a huge struggle from day one of living in Lville.  So where am I now?

 

Well, life is still a struggle, but I have learned and seen that God is still sovereign and in control.  He has put me at an amazing church, among amazing people, and really blessed me and opened my eyes to see that I do have a “home” in Lville.  I have been so thankful for the community at Springdale.  If it wasn’t for the people there and the Lord so noticeably moving in that place I would probably still be stuck in my close-minded mess.  This doesn’t mean that everything is hunky dory and I am always the best person and in the best mood, but it does mean that I am human and that I am moving towards being closer to God like I once was.

 

I have still had trouble finding a friend group, but have met some pretty awesome people that are beginning to fill this role.  Thankfully.  I am so ready to have the community I once had, because life without it has been super hard.

 

One a slightly different note – another reason Lville has been such a struggle has been my work situation.  The family I work for seemed great at first but as I got into things this was not the case at all.  They are good people, but they are not the fit for me.  I love their children, but cannot continue working with them.  So this coming Friday will be my last day as thier nanny.

 

Another struggle of Lville has been my class schedule.  I really like one of my classes, another one has huge potential, and the other I thought I would like, but is way harder than I expected and I just do not like it.  It might be the basis of me changing my degree.

 

Hopefully things in my life will continue to get better, getting involved at Springdale is just the tip of the iceberg for what the Lord has for me I feel.  I am working on getting my quiet time back on track, hoping to get involved more in a small group of believers to hold me accountable and to live life with, and hopefully I will find another job soon, because if not then my life will be another set of worries and struggles.

 

Well that is my rant and dumping of how I feel right now.  This is what I am doing instead of working on my Systematic Theology Paper that is due Tuesday.