Wednesday, December 31, 2008

I wonder sometimes about the outcome

74% raised: a few hours left!

The past few days have been surreal. I can't believe that this day is finally here. I have been preparing and waiting for so long that it doesn't feel like this could be possible. I think it is kinda funny that I am leaving on New Years Day, starting a new year with a new mission, a new outlook. This past year has been crazy, and in the spirit of my friends.. I too will cover the highlights of my year.

Spain (round one): In case you haven't figured it out by now, I really have felt drawn to the ministry of En Vivo and the people in Spain, but some of you may not know why. Spain changed my life in two major ways. 1- I started friendships there that I feel like God is not done working through and I need to continue them with more than just an email or facebook message. I need to be there. I need to show them how He has changed and blessed me. 2- Most of the people I went to Spain with have become an irreplacable part of my life. They are some of my best friends and I know that I would do anything for them, and that they would (and have) done anything for me. Halley, Brittany, Dan and Jared - you are an incredible blessing to me on an almost daily basis. Thank you for everything that are.

Third Format: I know that I just wrote about this not too long ago, so I won't go crazy, but 3F has been such an amazing thing for me this year. I can't imagine why I waited so long to be involved. Probably just being stubborn. I love being involved with 3F, I love it.

Small Group: Girls, I know I wrote about you not too long ago, but you have all proved the last couple of weeks that you deserve it all again. You have been awesome at putting up with my crazy and coming out every night to say goodbye. I will miss you all so deeply. Amy, Ashley, Ali, Brittany, Bethany, Holly, Halley, Karin, Michelle, Meagan, and Tara- I just love you girls. There are not enough words.

Family: oh my gosh... I love my little sister SOO much! She is beautiful and amazing :) She is not only a highlight of this year, but a highlight of every year. K-wo, you are quite simply one of the best parts of my life. My parents are just incredible. Even when we fight and I make them crazy I'm sure... they still love me and support me. They are just too good to me sometimes.

As my finale for 2008, I am leaving my one resolution for 2009: to be more open and sharing with my heart.

The Way I See It #141 "I used to feel so alone in the city. All those gazillions of people and then me, on the outside. Because how do you meet a new person? I was very stumped by this for many years. And then I realized, you just say 'hi.' They may ignore you. Or you may marry them. And that possibility is worth that one word." - Augusten Burroughs

Monday, December 29, 2008

I'm the girl with the best intentions

72% raised/pledged: TWO DAYS!

Its amazing how fast these last couple of weeks have flown by. My bags are almost completely packed, and I am trying to make the rounds to say goodbye to everyone. If I don't make it to see you its not because you are not loved, I just purely ran out of time. I have been amazingly blessed by each and every person in my life and I cannot thank you enough for what all of you mean to me.

Last night at 3F was incredibly hard. I am just overwhelemed with the community and the friendships and love that I have there. I know that it will still be there when I get back, but it will be one of the biggest things that I will miss.

The next few days are going to be extremely emotional and crazy, so please forgive me in advance. :)

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

my heart is laying open

61.5% raised/pledged: EIGHT DAYS!

Well... just a few more short days until I leave for Spain! At Romi's suggestion (thanks!) I am going to leave my contact info, some info about En Vivo and ways to sponsor me, if you so choose.

While I am in Spain, the easiest ways to get a hold of me will probably be email at, facebook or skype (once I remember to go download it onto my laptop). My US cell will be shut off starting on Jan 2nd, but that will be the same number I will have when I get home- so don't delete me! If you want to send me letters, the address for En Vivo is
Calle Placentinos 3, bajo
Salamanca Spain 37008

En Vivo is the ministry that I will be working at. You can see their websites at or (in spanish!). Jesse and Sophie Bentley run the campus house there with the help of a full time staff and the interns and exchange students. They do several events and activities every week to bring in college students and build relationships. I'm sure I will be posting a lot about these as they occur and I get more involved.

As far as sponsoring me, I will be counting on my family to deposit any funds that are given while I am out of the country. If you have pledged to sponsor me on a monthly basis, would like to, or would like to give a one time gift, you can send a check in my name to my home address and my family will do a bank deposit for me to access. If you need to give a tax deductible gift, please email me for details.

Now that my plane tickets are all paid for, and tuition is paid- the majority of my budget left to raise is my monthly expenses. Housing, food, transportation, personal expenses, ministry activities, just to name a few. Fortunately for me, I don't need to have the full amount for these raised the day I leave (can you imagine how much more I would be stressing!) I just need some faithful supporters. I will not be able to work (for pay) while I am in Spain, so it is even more important to have people who are committed to praying for and supporting me.

Thank you again to all of you who have supported me so far. This would truly be impossible without you and without our awesome God. I am actually amazed at how calm I am at this point. I am kinda waiting for the freak out to happen....

PS- My one extravagant thing I did for myself this Christmas, was actually also helpful! I bought a pair of TOMS to take to Spain with me.. this is a great organization if you have never heard of them, check it out! In the words of Tara "It's like 2 for 1, but you only get to keep 1!"

Friday, December 19, 2008

I don't see what anyone can see in anyone else but you

58% raised/pledged : TWELVE DAYS!!!!

Tonight was very simply - AMAZING.

Thank you to all of those who came and gave, even through the cold. I'm sure you could have been doing so many other things tonight and you will never know what it meant to me. Thanks to Cory and Eileen for the use of their yard!

Thank you to those of you who could not come, but sent me prayers and thoughts and happiness today. They were felt!

Thank you to Kristen, Halley, Ashley, Brittany, Bethany, Michelle and Holly for helping out with snacks, beverages, decorations and generally keeping me from going crazy.

THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU to Dan, Tara and Richard. Thank you for your time and for sharing your gifts. Most of you will never know how much of a blessing these 3 were to me for the past couple weeks. They gave unselfishly and I am lucky to have them as friends. (and thanks for putting up with my crying at totally inappropriate times)

Most importantly - Thank you God. Thank you for these amazing friends, for the opportunity to do this fundraiser and for moving in people. Thank you for the opportunity I even have to go on this trip and for providing a way for me to get there. I know you have a plan for where the rest of the money is going to come from. I trust you to get it to me when it is time!

These last few days at home are crazy and busy, but I would really like to have time to say goodbye to everyone. Please let me know when you are available!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

a girl could lost tonight

52% raised: 17 DAYS

I have no words to express the love and blessings I feel today. Our God is so big and so amazing.

Spain Benefit Concert this Friday Dec 19th 7:30pm to 10pm
Featuring myself, Dan, Richard and Tara.
Donations at the door- $5 minimum please
We will be outside, so dress warmly & bring a blanket to sit on
contact me for address and directions or with any questions!

Monday, December 8, 2008

rid me of myself

44% raised/pledged: 23 DAYS LEFT!!!!

Last night was an interesting emotional experience for me. It was possibly my last time singing at 3F until I get back from Spain. I am going to miss 3F and the band guys so much. This weekend I led the song "Lead me to the Cross" and it really got to me. Saturday night at Mesa is always harder for me (just an energy level thing) and I had been sick this week. My prayer that night was just to get through it, and having it be a blessing to God. Sunday at Gilbert is always a different experience. Before service I was really worried about my voice giving out on me, I didn't sing a lot during practice and I was drinking a ton of tea and water. Right before the song was to start, I prayed this simple prayer "God- let this just be about you and me. I don't care if everything goes completely wrong, nothing else matters" I don't know how to explain it, words are never enough, but the words to the song meant more. They were straight from my heart to God's ears. He gave me a peace in my soul and wrapped me in His love. When I opened my eyes at the end of the song, I was actually a little disoriented with where I was.

This is all going to be ok. I have hope in Him and I am not giving up yet. Spain is going to happen if that is what He wants, and if it's not then He will find a way to heal my broken heart.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

If you never try, you'll never know

43% raised/pledged: 29 DAYS!

"No matter how prosaic, practical, and ploddingly unimaginative we may be, we have dreams like everybody else. All of us do. In them even the most down-to-earth and pedestrian of us leave earth behind and go flying, not walking, through the air like pelicans. Even the most respectable go strolling along crowded pavements naked as truth…

… The tears of dreams can be real enough to wet the pillow and the passions of them fierce enough to make the flesh burn. There are times we dream our way to a truth or an insight so overwhelming that it startles us awake and haunts us for years to come."
--Frederick Buechner excerpt from "Whistling in the Dark"

I have this problem... I think I dream too much. The problem is not really in the quantity of my dreams, its in the quality. I have a lot of extremely vivid and passionate dreams for my life and my future. I worry that it is dangerous for my heart to be attached to things that are not really there. There has to be a line between real and attainable goals for my education, career and future and the little girl dreams of my future husband, family and the hopes I have for us. Where is that line? When have I let it go too far?

On a slightly unrelated note, I have had a hard time being willing to share my heart. Pain, heartbreak and broken trust in my past have brought me to this point. To the point at which I am so afraid to be vulnerable, because of the possibility of hurt. I am so afraid to expose my heart to that danger. Afraid to tell people how I really feel about them. I need to be better about this. I don't want to miss the opportunity. I don't want anyone to ever doubt my love for them. If I stop to think about it, my heart has already been given away- I just need to accept it. Each of my friends has a little piece, another has a pretty big chunk and God has the rest. The possibility for hurt is already there. Please don't break me again.

Richard shared this with me yesterday, and I just loved it, so I thought I would share too:
"There is no safe investment. To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly be broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up sage in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket--safe, dark, motionless, airless-- it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. The alternative to tragedy, or at least the risk of tragedy, is damnation. The only place outside Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers and perturbations of love is Hell.

I believe that the most lawless and inordinate loves are less contrary to god's will than a self-invited and self-protective lovelessness... We shall draw nearer to God, not by trying to avoid the sufferings inherent in all loves, but by accepting them and offering them to Him; throwing away all defensive armour. If our hearts need to be broken, and if He chooses this as a way in which they should break, so be it."
-- C.S. Lewis

Monday, December 1, 2008

tell me your secrets, ask me your questions

43% raised: 30 DAYS!
I do not have email addresses for some people, and I am trying to switch all of my Spain correspondence to email... so sorry for those of you who get this info twice :)

Thank you to those of you who have already supported me (both financially and in prayer). You all mean so much to me and your encouragement has been my rock the past few months.

Important Dates:
December 6th- garage sale at my house (if you have any stuff you would like to be rid of, please get it to me by thurs)
December 10th?- proposed date for another fundraiser I am really excited about. more info to come.
December 20th- tuition due
December 31st- Depart for Spain (via Altanta for orientation)

Please let me know if you would be able to sponsor me on a monthly basis while I am gone, or if you would like more information on giving a tax deductible gift. I am also available to do odd jobs if you have anything you need done! If you are able to support me while I am gone (or continue to support me) please let me know before December 20th.
I have a hard time understanding how people can be so hurtful to others, especially when they are doing it on purpose. I hate playing these stupid little dramatic mind games. I am forced to make a decision that either way is going to hurt ME. If only I had not trusted this person, there would not even be a problem right now. As it stands I am living in fear that at any moment, they could betray my trust and crush me.

You know what? No. I WILL be stronger than this. I will not be paralyzed by fear, or cause myself pain to protect her. I trust my real friends to protect my heart and I trust God to take care of the situation. He knows what is right for me. If it is supposed to happen for me, He will use the situation (no matter how bad) to make it happen. I WILL trust in Him.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

no ones going to love you more than I do

43%: 31 DAYS!

I have been reading for a couple of years now. There is this guy who just felt that people had so many secrets, and sometimes no one to tell them to. So he made a decision to be that release for them. People write their secrets on a postcard and send them to him and he updates this blog every week. (I sometimes wonder what his mail carrier thinks) Sometimes the secrets are "inappropriate" or not politically correct, but they all come from a real person, a real hurt. Sometimes they really hit my own a heart a little too closely. Sometimes, feeling their hurt, or realizing that I have the same fear makes me cry. Just ordinary people, sharing their fears and pains. I look forward to every sunday when the new secrets are posted.

Monday, November 24, 2008

loving you is easy

43% raised: 37 DAYS LEFT!!

After my spain team devo today and my emotional roller coaster of a weekend, I have just really been touched by the amazing support I have in my life. My devo was about community. (the verses were 1 corinth 12:14-26, Acts 2:42-47 if you care to read with me today)

I have been surrounded by an amazing community this past year, becoming reinvolved at Central and 3F and being with the best small group ever. I was really wary of 3F, having been hurt by the people who were in the previous college and young adult groups at central. I was truly afraid of people my age and of being hurt again. I took a chance on going to Spain with people I didnt know (or hardly knew at all)After the Spain trip this spring, I decided to give it a second chance and I have just been so blessed. I guess God knows what He is doing sometimes :) The relationships I have built have restored my faith in other people and brought me to a healthy place with myself and with God. I have loved being in the band again and having all of these great Christian guys around. They constantly make me laugh and challenge me musically.

My small group girls have just been the greatest addition to my life this year. It is like having this great, supportive extended family. Halley and Brittany have been with me every step of the way since we came home from Spain. They are the first ones I come to when I am struggling or when something exciting happens. The other girls have all become amazing friends over the past few months. I have known some of them for years, and others I just met this summer, but they are now an irreplacable part of my life. Truthfully, I was worried that we would not be able to bond or form lasting relationships when this group started. I really thought that everyone would flake out and I would be alone, as usual. But we have had some crazy awesome times. I know that they are there for me in hard times, or when things are great. They have helped me prepare to leave for Spain and everything that has meant for me. (Tara- we all can't wait for you to come home and be a part of it!)

Kristine- you are my support and my laughter. I am so glad that we got thrown together with these crazy jh girls. You are in my everyday life, and I know that it will be hard when I am gone... but God will find a way to strengthen us through it. I can't imagine my life without you and I'm not really sure how I made it that long before I met you. <3 you!

I love you all and I will miss you while I am gone. I can't wait to see where God takes us and our relationships. Even as we are thousands of miles apart, we are together with one God and one purpose. We have a worldwide community. Thank you for what you have meant in my life this year, and for where you have helped me grow.

Thursday, November 20, 2008


35%: 41 days!

Just a little over a month to go! Emotionally and physically I am ready to go. Financially... not so much. I am afraid to start packing (or even making packing lists) because I don't want to have to un-pack it all again in the event I can't go. Some people are telling me that maybe this is God's way of telling me no? I just have a hard time accepting that He would let it get this far, just to say no. Would He really break my heart that much? My heart just feels so heavy right now.

I am fresh out of ideas for fundraising. Having a garage sale in a couple of weeks and Richard just gave me some more ideas that I am looking into. (thanks richard!)

Monday, November 10, 2008

you've got my only heart

32%: 51 days!

Every day I wake up and feel like a little bit more of my heart is in Spain... at least the part of it that hasn't been given away :) This gives me more hope every morning that I am making the right choice. The emotional freak outs are fewer and farther between (but I am sure they will be back in full force soon). I have been trying to protect my heart in the event that I don't get to go because of finances (and from another possibly heart-breaking situation), but I think I am in too far now. The pain will be real and it will take a long time to go away. Even just thinking of the possibility.... its not pretty.

Still trying to maintain faith that He will provide in His perfect timing!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

31% raised: 53 days.

I am not freaking out as much as I thought I would be at this point. I just wish that the financial stuff would get settled so that I could focus more on other stuff. Ok God. What am I supposed to be learning here?

My little heart is so confused. There are some situations in my personal life that I am not sure what to do about. Do I try and take care of them before I leave? or just let it go until I get home?

Wednesday, November 5, 2008


29% raised: 56 days left

Whether or not you voted for Barack Obama, yesterday was a historic day in our country. Someday we will all get to tell our kids that we were a part of that.

It breaks my heart this morning to see the reactions from our country, especially Christians. There seems to be a sense of panic and fear among those who supported McCain, as if the country is going to end under Obama. There should be no room for this in our lives. We are called to be hope and light to the world. It almost makes me ashamed to see and hear some of the things that Christians are saying about Obama this morning. What kind of light and hope is that?

Our God is bigger than any president and any election, or any economic downfall. He let Barack Obama win because He is going to use that. OUR HOPE IS IN THE LORD, not in the president or the stock market. I think it is time for Christians to move on and support this new phase of our country.

I promise to now step off my soapbox and stay away from politics for awhile. :)

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

can you hear us?

29%: 57 days

I don't often express my political views. Sometimes this is because I dont feel like I know enough about a certain person/issue, but more than often it is because I am tired of arguing because I may not always feel or vote the way a Christian "should". I hate that some people vote only with a certain party or for people who share the same view on certain issues (especially abortion...) You don't have to be a staunchly conservative Republican to love Jesus. Just because someone does not believe in abortion does not mean they are the best choice for the country. I'm not saying either side is right all of the time- I am just tired of this. It is important to consider the issues, but do not base your decision solely on abortion and gay marriage.

I think what is important to realize is that no matter who our next president is... God is still God. He is still bigger than all of it. He will use it for His purpose and we will all be ok. It may not be in the way we expect or want (it so hardly ever is), But He is still in control of our country and ultimately our lives. He uses imperfect people every single day.

I hope you all took the time to pray for our country and go out and vote today. You don't have a right to complain if you gave up your right to have a part in the decision making process :) Your vote is your voice.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

songs in my pockets

27% raised: 62 days

I miss writing music. Its been at least 2 or 3 months since I had time to sit and write for myself (or work on teaching myself guitar and piano) I just don't know where the inspiration went. Is there a way to recapture it?

Monday, October 27, 2008

I don't know where to go from here

27% raised: 65 days to go

well. after a very stressful and frustrating morning in LA, my visa application is in. There were many tears shed, there was not enough coffee consumed and I am just glad the whole thing is over

it started at 4:45am with an argument with my dad on the way to the airport. My parents are being... well not exactly unsupportive, but they think that I am being impractical. At least once a week I hear how I should have waited until next year, or I am not going to get the money raised in time, or something along those lines.

Got on the flight and to LA ok, had to wait for my shuttle to take me to the consulate. Then my shuttle driver got lost on UCLA campus, during morning rush hour. I was 10 minutes late to my 15 minute appointment. Got into the consulate and they were nice enough to squeeze me in. BUT apparently the person who I had emailed to make sure that I had all of the necessary paperwork from University of Salamanca lied to me and did not let me know that I had to prove that I have paid my deposit for school. SO I walked 6 blocks to a fedex/kinkos, got online and printed my bank statement that shows I paid it. Return to the consulate to find out that I have the wrong kind of prepaid mail envelope (their website is wrong... it says they only take USPS express mail... FALSE. They want fedex express mail which would have been nice to know when I was at the fedex/kinkos) So I leave again and go to the mailboxes, etc that is just next door, get the right envelope and go back upstairs. Of course while I am doing this last trip, my shuttle to the airport tries to pick me up, so I have to call and reschedule a new pick up (which I ALMOST missed that one too!). Finally made it back to LAX and had my first cup of coffee of the day and had time to sit and just relax for a bit.

Now I am at the house where I am dog sitting, and I just got an email from my mom. She thinks I am avoiding her and not talking to her. Sigh. I have just been busy. That whole time management thing again. My mom and I used to have so many issues when I was growing up, but we have become amazing friends since I graduated high school. I don't want to ruin that, but I don't know how to tell her how much her negativity hurts me.

gah. sorry for the long story, I just needed to rant. I don't know if this is just one of those obstacles that I have to get through that will make it all more worthwhile in the end, or if its just satan being a poop. (that's for you Romi). I think the only thing I need to worry about now is raising the rest of my money for the trip. Tuition is due December 20th and the rest is my money for while I am actually IN spain. Here is the breakdown for those who have asked/care to know

School tuition - 880 euros
Housing - approx. 1210 euros
Food/Personal - 1350 euros
city transportation - $100
other travel - 500 euros
retreat - 60 euros
cell phone (with min.) - 35 euros
ministry - 225 euros

with the current exchange rate (at this very moment it is 1 euro=$1.26) this leaves me with about $5,500 left to raise. I am having another car wash on November 8th (ask me or see facebook for details) and I am trying to think of some more clever ideas for fundraising!

Friday, October 24, 2008

27%raised: 68 days


I am feeling sick today. I think this is 20% due to excitement, 20% due to stress and 60% due to the fact that I have had 6 hours of sleep in the last 48 hours. High School Musical 3 premiere with my girls- totally worth it. We stayed up late Wednesday night to make shirts and watch the first 2 movies and then went to the midnight showing last night. We had so much fun and were "way too aggressive"

Visa appointment on monday in LA. scary. I have never been by myself in another city. I'm a little nervous about having to get myself from LAX to my appointment and back without anyone there to help me.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

more than words

27% raised: 71 days

I am amazed, loved, overwhelmed and just floored right now. This past year God has really been teaching me to ask for help instead of trying to do things on my own. And He constantly surprises me with how He decides to show up when I do. I am at a loss for words. I am feeling so many things that are going to burst out of me. The people at Starbucks probably think I am a nutcase because I am crying while typing.

I will be able to purchase my plane tickets to Spain this week, go to LA next monday to get my Visa application in and move forward with raising the rest of my budget. The next 2 1/2 months are going to be hard, but this past week has only reinforced my faith that I am doing the right thing and the God does want me to be in Spain next semester. I know that this is what the immediate future holds for me and I am trusting Him to take care of the rest.

I don't even know how to begin to thank you all. Words are not enough, but they are all I have. So I will tell you repeatedly and wholeheartedly, Thank you. Thank you for your unfailing support and encouragement. Thank you for believing, even when I could not. Thank you to those of you who are supporting me financially. Thank you for the continued prayers for the ministry of En Vivo and the students in Spain. In so many ways, you all are just as much a part of this as I am.

Friday, October 17, 2008

top 5

22.9% raised! 75 days until I leave

Frustrated this morning with myself and with plane tickets, so I am taking this from Jared and Tara in an attempt to chill out before I have to go to work.

Favorite Bands/Artists:
1] John Mayer
2] Sara Bareilles
3] The Fray
4] Coldplay
5] Bethany Joy Galeotti

Favorite Songs from those bands:
1] 3x5 by John Mayer
2] Gravity by Sara Bareilles
3] How to Save a Life by The Fray
4] Fix You by Coldplay
5] tie between Feel This and Leaving Town Alive by Bethany Joy

Favorite Movies:
1] My Big Fat Greek Wedding
2] 13 going on 30
3] Hairspray
4] 10 things I Hate About You
5] Sleeping Beauty (all time best Disney movie)

Favorite Trilogies:
1] Pirates of the Caribbean
2] Bourne Series
3] Spiderman
4] High School Musical (I don't even need to see the 3rd one yet to know)
5] Indiana Jones- The original 3

Favorite recent/current TV shows:
2] The Office
3] One Tree Hill
4] Pushing Daisies
5] I love to watch the Discovery Channel shows

Favorite classic TV shows:
1] Saved by the Bell
2] I Love Lucy
3] Bewitched
4] Full House
5] Mad About You

Favorite Resturants:
1] PF Changs
2] BJ's
3] Bellagio's
4] Olive Garden
5] Applebees

Favorite Fast Food:
1] Steve's Krazy Subs
2] Wendy's
3] Fazoli's
4] Taco Bell
5] Panda Express

Favorite Places I've been in the World:
1] Spain
2] Jamaica
3] Monterey, CA (will ALWAYS be on my list)
4] hopefully I will be adding some more places soon!

Favorite NON-Fiction Books [other than Bible]:
1] Blue Like Jazz- Donald Miller
2] Captivating- John & Staci Eldredge
3] Wild At Heart- John Eldredge
4] Velvet Elvis- Rob Bell
5] Your Brain on Music (can't remember who wrote it at the moment)

Favorite Fiction Books:
1] The Shack by William P Young
2] I read far too much to pick any favorites after that

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

I'm giving up on doing this alone now

still at 21%: 77 days to go!

Well... as soon as I know when I am coming home from Spain- I can buy my plane tickets! I'm also NOT staying in Atlanta for 3 days as originally planned. I will arrive in ATL at 6am, go to our orientation and then back to the airport with the team to fly out at 6pm. Yay for 12 hours of Atlanta.

I don't know what else to do for fundraising. I'm at a complete loss for creativity on this one. We are doing another car wash in a couple of weeks (mostly because I still have all of the stuff from last time), and the possibility of a garage sale in november. After that I have no ideas and no plans for how to raise this money.

Monday, October 13, 2008

You're on to me, and all over me

Still stuck at 21%: 79 days to go!

I have been having a hard time maintaining my positive attitude of last week. It seems that satan is throwing things into my life to drag me down. Between major health issues in my family and my almost family, to a negative attitude from others about my trip, to several run ins with people I prefer not to surround myself with anymore. It has been hurting my heart and making me doubt. Several people who are close to me have said "Well what happens when you don't get your money raised for Spain" (note the use of 'when' and not 'if') and they seem to scoff at me when I tell that I trust God to get me there, because that is where He has called me to be. Then when I am by myself, those negative thoughts start to creep in. What if they are right? What if all of my faith in this trip is just silly? What would I do if I can't get the money raised and I can't go? How would I possible pay back all the money that people have already given? I am trying to jut shake it off, but negativity is a persistant little annoyance. I need to remain faithful, but mostly I need for those around me to remain faithful (or at least keep their doubts to themselves) I DO truly believe this is where I am supposed to be next semester and I trust God to get me there.

I am constantly stuggling with discipline and time management. This is probably going to be a lifelong battle for me. I admire my friends who are so good at both. Now don't get me wrong, I love the fact that I am a dreamer and involved in so many things that I can't keep them straight. The only problem is that without discipline I end up trying to give of myself to too many things and I have nothing left for me. I have been feeling pulled in a million directions and unfortuantely the 2 areas that have suffered the most are my schoolwork and my personal music. I almost need just a free week locked in a blank room with my textbooks, a computer that can only do my homework, my music books and my keyboard. Can someone work on that? I need to catch up where I have fallen behind, but I don't know where to find the time. The past 2 weeks have flown by. Monday arrives before I even realize it and its time to start all over. Where can I find the time without trimming out the things that sustain me and make me feel whole? How can I make time for my quiet time, school, work, personal music, 3F music, jr high girls, family, friends, my health and everything that is important to me?

Yesterday Dan, Brittany, Halley and I went to Payson to hike at Natural Bridge. It was so refreshing and great to get away. I love being with them. It is amazing to me how much they are a part of my life now, when I hardly knew them a year ago. The hike was beautiful and just awe-inspiring, i love being silly with them one minute and then having serious conversations the next. On the way home I was driving and everyone else fell asleep. For about 45 minutes, it was just me, the highway and my I Heart CD. I felt peaceful and grateful for an amazing day.

I am just asking for some prayer support in a few areas:
- for God to continue to be faithful as I am raising support for my Spain trip.
- for those around me to be encouraging, and MY faith in God's calling me to this trip to continue
- Health issues in my family (I really can't be more specific at this time)
- Discipline and time management, knowing where to build up and what needs to come down.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

My heart beating out of my chest

21% raised: 85 days until I leave!!

I am SO very close to being able to purchase my plane tickets. Like tantalizingly close. It is torture waiting. It now looks like I will be back in May instead of June next year. Kristine and I are not going to be able to do our European Escapades. That is a little sad, but it will be for the best. Just less time you all have to miss me :)

I just love it when God answers prayer. Even when it comes out of unusual places or is not how/when I expect it to be. (You would think I would have learned by now!!) I have been praying for a couple of areas of my personal life for months now - trying to be patient, asking God to please let me know if I am doing the right thing, give me peace about the situation and take away my desire if it is not what He has planned. This past weekend was an amazing, difficult, whirlwind of emotions, but I came out of it feeling refreshed, excited and ready for what God is bringing in the next few months. I am sleeping less than ever, but I feel sustained. I am daily uncertain about what this Spain adventure is going to bring, but the stress is receding as I know He will take care of it all. I am feeling encouraged and challenged by my Christian friends - I love love love reading all of your blogs and seeing what God is working on your heart. I really love reading the discussion postings about the NT readings.

This probably just sounds like me gushing emotions, but I really am so happy and just... chill about everything. My soul feels at rest for the first time in a very long time.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

21% raised: 88 days until I leave!

Well God must just be laughing at me today. After I wrote the post this morning about worry, WAY too much drama happened. I don't think I passed if I was being tested :(

We showed up to do the car wash at Val Vista and Guadalupe... and there was a girls soccer group doing a car wash at the gas station we had reserved. When one of the girls went in to talk to the supervisor- they at first tried to tell us that we didnt make a reservation. Then we proved that we had, we were basically told "sorry- this other group showed up and said they were from central, so we gave them the stuff" For the record- they were not. Then Halley and the girls drove to like 10 different gas stations to see if anyone would let us in at the last minute. We finally found a place and even with the threat of rain, made $202.02 towards my trip.

So my undying love goes out to my small group girls, Dan and the Shell station at greenfield/baseline.

You bring me life, You bring me hope, You're all I need

18% raised: 88 days until I leave!

Car wash today- Val Vista and Guadalupe. I love my small group more than words can say sometimes. The fact that these girls (and a couple of awesome guy friends) are giving up a Saturday and sweating it out to help me with my goals... it is just amazing. Most have them have been in my life for such a short time and I already know I will miss them SO much when I leave. I think this is part of what has been missing for me the past couple of years. A group of people my age to go through life with (this must be why they are always saying that you NEED to be in a small group!)

In my NT reading yesterday, I was really challenged by Matt 6:27-34
"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is life not more important than food and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air, they do not sow or reap or store away and yet your Heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single day to his life?
And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, oh you of little faith?So do not worry, saying what shall we eat? or what shall we drink? or what shall we wear? For the pagans run after all these things and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."

How much time do I spend every day worrying? Especially recently. What a waste of time. I could be spending that time in so many more productive ways. I could be working on my music, focusing on school, spending time with my family.. enjoying life the way God wants me to have it. Instead I am freaking myself out and having panic attacks about things that are not even in my control. I know that God is going to take care of the finances and preparations for this trip, because that is where He has called me to be. I need to focus on my heart.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

I'll take the truth at any cost

18.5% raised: 90 days until I leave!

I am really excited about reading through the New Testament with a group at Third Format. It has been awhile since I have read the entire thing and I think it will be beneficial to have it fresh in my mind when I go to Spain. I love having people to discuss and interact with, I think it challenges me to read the scriptures in a new and different way.

My small group is also reading the book "Captivating" By John & Staci Eldredge. If you have never read this book, I HIGHLY recommend it. (man or woman) The last time I read this book, I was in a relationship (that I later realized was unhealthy and unfulfilling), but now being single I have different perspectives on the book. I think it is important for women to realize how valued and adored we are by God and how the world has damaged our perspective because of the shortcomings of our fathers/boyfriends/husbands. I also think men should read this book to gain some insight on women and the way that our souls work.

Monday, September 29, 2008

life makes it so hard sometimes to know whats real

17% raised for Spain: 93 days until I leave!

I had a really strange dream last night. I had to go to Spain to get something for my trip to Spain? Anyway... so in this dream, Halley, Brittany, Dan, Jared and I had to go back to Spain for a couple of days to get some papers signed for my trip. I woke up at 4ish and could not get back to sleep. I just have so many thoughts racing through my head- of what I need to get done, of the money I need to save/raise, the bills and things I need to take care of before I leave, and so much more. Most of all, this dream has me yearning to be back in Spain. In many many practical ways, I am not ready to leave yet, but I feel like emotionally I could leave right now.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

I won't stop believing, you alone are God

17% raised: 97 days left

Need some prayer requests lifted up please:
- I need to go get my Visa at some point this month, but I need to have my plane tickets before I can apply. To get the tickets I need to fundraise about another $600. My small group and I are doing a car wash next saturday (more details later) and I am doing a few odd jobs (cleaning, house sitting), but I know that God is going to provide this money from somewhere- I just don't know where

- I also have a few personal financial issues... medical bills, etc, that I would like to take care of before I leave the country.

- My schedule the next couple of months is crazy. I need to find time for myself, for school and for music in addition to the preparations for Spain. I think I have been so stressed lately because I am not good at the time management.

Friday, September 19, 2008

16.5% raised: 104 days left

I am having a hard time staying on track with my schoolwork this semester. Maybe ADD kids should not take online classes. I think I have just once again overbooked myself and now I don't know how to say no to anything. Something has to give and I don't know what it is going to be.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Sing to the Lord, He is worthy of praise

14.7% raised for spain: 107 days until departure!

I recently added a class to my schedule, so I am now in the Red Mountain Chamber Chorale at MCC. This semester we are doing a lot of Spirituals, Hymns and folk songs because... well because that is what the majority of choral music is. After class I got into a discussion with one of the Tenors about church. He and I had a class together last year, he knows where I stand in my faith and we have talked about our beliefs before. I guess he never knew where I went to church, or didn't remember, but today we had a "heated discussion" about church music and what it has become. I mentioned that we don't have a traditional service at Central anymore and I was told that for that reason our church was "not right". "It should not be about the people, it should be about God. You have made church into a free concert for people, instead of bringing them closer to God in worship."

I honestly was so shocked, that I didn't even know what to say. He was making such broad judgments about our music and people. I didn't know how to respond while maintaining a Christ-like attitude. I tried to explain the reasons that the traditional service no longer exists, and that I don't ever feel like church is a concert. I said that we are trying to use music that is relevant to contemporary culture to reach people and bring them to God. If I am being totally honest, sometimes I don't even think about the words when I am singing in chorale. I think you can turn it up and rock out in worship and that it is just as pleasing to God. He gave us the ability to sing and to play these instruments- it seems only fitting to use those gifts to return praise to Him.

This is really rocking me. As a music ed major, I will someday be teaching probably these very same songs to my students. How do I connect with God in these hymns and old spiritual songs in the same way that I do when I am singing at 3F? How can I maintain a Christ-like attitude with this guy in my Chorale?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

letting go gives a better grip

13.5% raised! 112 days until I leave!

This is a video of the last year at En Vivo (thanks again Chris). It gives a pretty good overview of what goes on and some student testimonies from the ministry. If you watch really closely at about the 4 minute mark- Jared and I are in the background for about 5 seconds haha.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

ain't it funny how the time goes by

13.3% raised for Spain! 115 days until I leave AZ!

Starting a few days ago, I have become more emotional than usual. Somehow the reality that I was leaving 3 days earlier for Spain sent me into this downward spiral. Seriously? In the grand scheme of it, 3 days in the course of the next 4 months is almost nothing... and yet here I am. I am not trying to say that God has not blessed me through this process thus far. He continually shows me every day His amazing perfection and new plans for me. I just worry about what will happen while I am gone. I don't even worry for myself. I know that I will be fine in Spain and I cannot wait to see Jesse, Sophie and everyone else there. I worry about what will happen while I am gone. My friends will continue to grow and change, my family will be different, my mom will worry every single day until I get home, I will miss singing in 3F and being with the guys in the band (and Tara when she gets home), I am going to miss out on precious days of my Jr high girls (both old and new) growing up and in their faith. I wonder if this is going to hurt the friendships I have built this last year. I want so much to find that person that God has prepared for me, but is it stupid to look for a relationship when I am leaving the country for 6 months?

I know that it is ridiculous to worry about these things, especially now. I should be enjoying the moments here and saving the memories for the time I am gone. I just can't my mind off of it.

Another Bethany Joy song that I love (and would love to sing)is called "leaving Town Alive" I can't get the embed or the link to work right now... but look it up if you have the time.

Thursday, September 4, 2008

no one else can feel it for you

12.8% raised for Spain: 118 days til I leave!

So everyone knows I am not crazy... yes I know how to count. I realize that my post from 3 days ago says 124 days, so logically today's should say 121 days. I found out this morning that I am leaving on January 1st now and making a small stop in Atlanta, GA for some team orientation, team building, etc. I am getting pretty excited, but still nervous that I am not going to get everything together in time. It is feeling like a lot to do, and not very much time. I am now registered for Universidad de Salamanca, need to send my first tuition payment for that. As soon as I have enough funds raised I will be buying the rest of my plane tickets and then I will be heading out to LA to get my visa! 

I am a little frustrated with plane tickets at the moment... Why is it that I can buy one way tickets from Phoenix to Atlanta, and from Atlanta to Madrid in January, but not from Madrid to Phoenix in June? (maybe this is a sign that I am not supposed to come home) 

Monday, September 1, 2008

the beauty you have now is brighter than before

12.8% raised for Spain: 124 days until I leave!

I have been trying to get back into songwriting lately. It is hard for me because I am not proficient on the guitar or piano, so I almost always need help actually composing the music to go with the melodies... or I end up with really basic chord progressions. I would love to be better and I think I finally have the patience and willingness to learn how to better myself in this area. I just pray that God gives me the courage to actually let other people hear the songs I write. 

Sometimes I have a hard time expressing myself with words, so I allow others to do it for me :) Bethany Joy is one of my favorite singer/songwriters. This is one of my favorite songs right now, and I would love to be able to perform it someday. (ps- I also love her songs "let me fall" and "songs in my pocket" if anyone is bored and would like to look them up)

It's gotta be this one
Don't have to fake it
You know I can take it
What if I told you
Your tears haven't been ignored
And everything that is taken
Can be restored

Feel this, Can you feel this
My heart beating
Out of my chest
Feel this, Can you feel this
Salvation under my breath

It's gotta be disguised
Soul and script
Caught in the mirror
What if I told you
That innocence is yours
And beauty you have now
Is brighter than before

Friday, August 29, 2008

Say what you're thinking right now

11.7% raised for Spain: 127 days until departure!

I live my life with an almost constant need for approval from others and a fear of rejection. No one ever believes that I am shy, but I am! I constantly worry about what other people think of me. I would rather remain quiet and not show people the real me, than open up and have them not like who I am. I am afraid though that I am going to miss out on some pretty awesome things and people because of this fear.  I feel like I have a lot of plans for my future with school and my eventual career, but my relationships suffer. I want to be brave enough to tell people how I feel. I want to have the courage to open up, I just don't want to be hurt again. 

On a completely unrelated note: I love these amazing storms that God is providing!  

Monday, August 25, 2008

You sang me Spanish lullabies

9.2% raised for Spain: 131 days til I leave!

Well. Today was the first day of school. Maybe the best first day I have ever had... mostly because all I had today was online classes (psych and music business). Post a discussion introducing yourself and read the syllabus. woo.

Tomorrow if my first day of Spanish classes and I am so excited. Not too thrilled about 7:30am start time, but I really love learning languages. I also start my new job tomorrow, working for a family friend. It will be cool to do something new and I love Gwen to pieces, so working for her will be awesome. Wednesday (in addition to being the best day of the whole year) is the start of JH small groups, with a new crop of 7th graders for Kristine and I. Already just trying to get a hold of them all has been.... an experience. Should be an interesting semester.

I have not been feeling like myself lately. I am happy and I think my life is going in a really good direction, but I just feel a little off. Hopefully I can shake it off soon.

Tuesday, August 19, 2008

As surely as the sun will rise, You'll come to us

6.7% raised for Spain!! (prayers are needed please!!)

Hosea 6:3- "Let us acknowledge the LORD; let us press on to acknowledge Him. As surely as the sun rises, He will appear; He will come to us like the winter rains, like the spring rains that water the earth"

I am starting to get a little bit nervous about Spain. There is a lot to do, and I really don't know where God is going to give me the time or the resources. Everything has to be done in a specific order... have to have the plane tickets and school acceptance before the student visa, have to apply for the Visa after Sept 4th, but before Nov 4th, need to figure out what classes I am taking there and what I need to do through MCC while I am gone. That is just the beginning of the list. If I think about it for too long, it makes me physically sick to my stomach.

I think this is God's way of reminding me that there is no way I could do this without Him. There is no way I could fundraise/save over $8000 without Him. At no other time in my life would I be ready to pick up and move to a foreign country for 6 months. In no other place would I be surrounded by such amazing, faithful people who are willing to pray for me and for a ministry half a world away, for people they will never meet. His timing and plans for me are perfectly laid out. He knows where my story is going and how I am going to get there. I just need to remember to allow Him the control, and to willingly go where He shows me. In ways that I am sure will shock and amaze me, He will bring solutions and answers.

One of my favorite songs right now is Hillsong United's"You'll Come" (from the I Heart Revolution CD). The lyrics just give me reassurance that God will show up when we need Him, as surely as the sun comes up everyday.

I have decided, I have resolved
To wait upon you Lord
My rock and redeemer shall not be moved
I'll wait upon you Lord

As surely as the sun will rise, You'll come to us
As certain as the dawn appears

You'll come let your glory fall, As you respond to us
Spirit reign, flood into our thirsty hearts again

We are not shaken we are not moved
We wait upon you Lord
Our Mighty deliverer, my triumph and truth
I'll wait upon you Lord

Chains be broken, Lives be healed
Eyes be opened, Christ is revealed

Thursday, August 7, 2008

but still my hope is found in You.

6% for Spain!

So I made a decision over the last few weeks to change my major... again. This now makes the 5th time (?). Even I have lost count. I have decided on Music Education. I really feel like this is the place I will be happiest. I have been really praying and soul searching about it. I feel like music is so important to have in children's lives and it promotes creativity and growth. Making this decision has finally put me at peace with my educational choices. This is the first time since I graduated in 2003 that I feel like I know where I want to go. The only problem now is that I am WAY behind on my courses for this. Looks like I will be in for another year of school. Graduate in 2010? 2011? who knows.

Monday, August 4, 2008

no one can find the rewind button

6% raised for Spain!

I think it is amazing how I have let busyness take over my life. I had my wisdom teeth out last Tuesday (which meant for a few days of couch sitting) and yesterday I became angry and frustrated because I didn't get more done. I was punishing myself for not being productive last week. Truthfully, I did get a few things done, but not nearly as much as I "should" have. It is sad how much our culture has pushed us into this belief that every moment should be put to use. Is it really that wrong to have 2 days of just enjoying rest?

Friday, August 1, 2008

I hear you in my dream

4% raised for Spain!

I love going back and listening to past messages from church when I am at home by myself. Right now I am in the middle of the Questions series from a few months back. I never heard 2 of those messages in the first place because we were in Spain, and so I was pretty excited about it. I was shocked and somewhat upset to discover today that my podcast was missing the message from 3F from March 30th (the last message in the series). So I had to go hunt down the Cal version from the website... just as good. Just to jog the memory of those who were there- that is the weekend that Jeremy (or in this case... Cal) read cards that had questions for God on them. Well what was already an emotional week became even more so when my card was read. Now I know there is no way that the Jernigan men could know that was my card, but that night I felt like Jeremy looked right at me when he read it. Like it he knew somehow.

"God why do all of my relationships fail? Even when I feel like they are from you, they never work. Would you really give me a desire to be married and never fulfill it?"

Now- that night hearing the pain and longing that came from my own heart was unbearable. But hearing it again 4 months later, the feeling is different. I still have the same question and I still feel the same, but it is different somehow. I think now I have more faith that God is going to take care of my relationships. I am more content now with the place that He has me. There is a reason I needed to be alone and someday someone is going to love me with everything He wants for me.

It is strange and amazing how much He has changed my heart in such a short period of time. My future is more uncertain than ever, but I feel more confident that it will be taken care of. I feel like I am able to dream again.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

After all, you're my wonderwall

Still holding strong at 3% of my money for Spain (but the letters are out now!)

I love stupid countdown shows on VH1. I am currently watching 100 greatest songs of the 90's and it is making me feel really nostalgic. I could seriously watch these all day and be so happy. I will, however, be very upset if the #1 song is Baby one more time. I'm only at number 50, so I will just have to wait and see.

So far, I am really loving having just one job. Waking up AFTER the sun comes up is pretty awesome. I miss my regular customers and my fun co-workers and I am having a hard time breaking myself of drinking SO much coffee!

I am soo excited to take guitar and piano. I hope that this will really help my music writing and hopefully I will actually be able to read music soon. Yes its true. I can't read music. I can fake it pretty well, but I learn everything by ear at the moment. I don't think I can teach music someday unless I know how to read music. I'm pretty sure that is frowned upon.

**Edit- In case anyone else cared, the #1 song was Nirvana "Smells like Teen Spirit"**

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Take time to realize I'm on your side

Still at 3% of my budget for Spain! (maybe I should get those letters out...)

My poor little laptop had a run in involving a cat and the floor. There is no way to be sure which cat it was, or that cat would be dead now. My dad has officially declared that it is beyond saving. So I am now in the market for a new one... I am thinking of getting a Mac this time around. Anyone have any opinions?

I am ready for school to start. This semester is going to be busy, but awesome. I am starting amazing cousin music time with Dani very soon (voice for her, piano for me). I will also be taking voice and guitar lessons in addition to my regular classes. My classes this semester should be interesting enough that I won't want to give up after the first month. I have a problem with actually wanting to take my Gen Ed classes. Blah on math and english. Its not that I'm not smart enough to do them, I just have no motivation at all because I can't see the point.

One week to John Mayer/Colbie Caillat!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

I need to catch my breath

I have 3% of my money raised for Spain!

What an amazing week this has been. Jesse and Sophie were here visiting for the weekend and seeing them only made me more excited for Spain. I think of everyone there all of the time and I am so ready to leave now! Talking to them also helped to calm my nerves about a few things and I feel more ready to take on all of my preparations. Its going to be a busy few months, but it will all be worth it when I get back to Salamanca.

I will also be starting a new chapter in my life very soon. On Friday I put in my notice at Starbucks. I have worked there for almost 3 years now, but I feel like my injury was a sign that I needed to leave. I will greatly miss seeing my coworkers and favorite customers every day, but I need to do what will be best for me in the long run. Starbucks has been an amazing part of my life these last few years and I have appreciated all of the experiences there.

I feel like something big is about to happen. I can't explain it and I can't wait to see what it is.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Love Enough

I have 3% of my money raised for Spain!

Sometimes I worry that God has given me too fragile of a spirit. I love too often and trust too easily, don't ever give up on "lost causes", have my heart broken and bruised by other people (who often promise that they will not be the same as the one before...). I often forget to take time for myself, because I am too busy with everyone else.

On the other hand, I have come to realize that this trait I have always though of as a "fault" has made me a better Jr High leader and a better follower of Christ. I truly do believe that it takes a certain gentleness and vulnerability to be with jr highers (especially girls) and to have them genuinely respect and listen to you. I am afraid that too many people get into student ministry for the wrong reasons: because their kids are older and they need to keep an eye on them, because someone else pushed them into it, because they feel those kids need to be whipped into shape before they can be "real christians". I am not saying that these kids are perfect, or don't need any help learning to behave, but they need to be given a chance to learn. My girls have become some of my greatest teachers the last 2 years. They have taught me how to embrace my fragility and how to share it with others. These 13 year old girls have taught me more about faith than many sermons or books could. I didn't go into this ministry looking to be changed, in fact I wasn't even looking to be a part of it at all. But with God's amazing plan, I was thrown into it and these have been an amazing couple of years.

Jr High kids are just looking for people to love them and to listen to them. But it takes a special kind of person to see the thin line between guiding in faith and love and churning out a group of kids who know all the "right" answers, but feel nothing. I do not think that just anyone can spend a lot of time with those kids... you will never hear me say that just anyone can do that! I just thinkt hat more people need to realize that those kids are the future of the church and of our world. Those kids are the future adult leaders who will be helping to raise my kids.

I look forward to this next year and what craziness JH will surely bring.

"Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. I tell you the truth, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it" - Mark 10:14-15

Sunday, July 6, 2008

You've got me out here in the water so deep

I am constantly amazed by God's awesome plans for my life. The fact that the creator of the universe takes the time to care about little ol' me is just... crazy.

God's timing is just so insanely perfect that it makes me wonder how people can NOT believe in Him. I needed a new job for this fall (just until I leave for Spain) and He has provided the PERFECT place for me to be. And all I had to do was pray send an email to ask other people to pray. How easy is that? I know that it is not always that quickly answered, but this helps to restore my faith in other things that I am praying for.... I know that they will come in His time, not in mine.

Wow. I am still just knocked over by all of this. My life is just crazy working out right now. It almost makes me wonder what I am going to do to screw it up :)

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

por eso te amo

Yesterday I received my first pack of papers to fill out for Spain! This really ramped up my excitment, but also put in a bit of nervousness I did not have before. This is like serious now. I am going to be in a foreign country for 5 months. I have a LOT of work to do and not very much time. Currently sitting next to me is a paper scribbled full of "things to do". Something is added every few minutes. I am so very very excited. I cannot even put into words how thrilled I am.

In other exciting news - Guin and Mike picked a wedding day! I will be in georgia to see my beautiful penguin get married on Dec 4th, 2009 :) I am so excited for them both and I cannot wait to go see them.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

break my heart for what breaks yours

Its hard to know if following your heart is always the right thing. Our selfish, sinful hearts may often lead us in the wrong direction. Feelings and emotions can get in the way. I am constantly afraid of upsetting or disappointing others. How do I stop caring so much about what others think?

I realized that I am a hard person to get to know. I tend to shut down around new people or in strange situations. Maybe this has been the downfall of my relationships? I think this goes back to caring about what everyone else thinks. I fear being judged too quickly. I am comfortable with who I am, I know that God loves me, but I have a hard time accepting that other people can love me as I am. I am afraid of not being thin enough, beautiful enough, talented enough. I'm afraid that no one will be able to accept me, with all of my imperfections.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

so I ask myself, who do I want to be?

I realized today as I was preparing to write in my trusty livejournal... I started it 4 years ago. The name of my livejournal is Lontano dal cuoro which means far from the heart in Italian. 4 years ago I was an entirely different person than I am today. I was completely removed from my own feelings and from the people who truly cared about me because I was afraid of being hurt. So instead I was the one who did all of the hurting. Far from the heart indeed. I now am surrounded by amazing friends and people who inspire me to be the person that God is shaping me to be. I now actively search after God every day. I trust Him to get me where I need to be, even if I don't always understand the path it takes to get there.

So it is time for a fresh start, with a new name. With one song. I truly believe in the power of music to heal the soul and to be used for good in the world. Music can be used in every stage of life and for every emotion. Like a modern day David, my songs can be used to cry out to God in times of hurt and need, and also in moments of joy and adoration. When words fail, music lives on. I have really been loving being involved with the 3F worship and focusing on my own musical growth since coming home from Spain. Its like coming home after being somewhere really different- like you are back where you belong. I feel like I relate to musicians on an entirely different level. No words are even necessary. Last night at practice I sat through an entire song just to listen. I am just amazed by the talent and passion of all of those guys. I thank God for their willingness to share their gift. They have motivated me to actually pick up my sadly neglected guitar again and plow through the work of teaching myself to play. I have a million little phrases and melodies floating around my head and scribbled onto the back of receipts in my wallet or in the margin of a notebook. Maybe with enough inspiration I can actually get them all together into something.

Psalm 108:1 - My heart is steadfast , O God; I will sing and make music with all my soul.