Friday, November 2, 2012

Maybe One Day...

Maybe one day I will learn how to sew on a sewing machine.  I've sewn a few projects by hand, including some rather special bunnies, and the lining for a hat that I knit.  I'm not a big project person, but I think every once in a while I might like to whip out a cute, hand-made oven mitt or a personalized apron for a gift.  And those would be a lot easier with a machine rather than by hand.

Maybe one day I will teach kids in my neighborhood a few basic drawing techniques.  I have always really enjoyed doodling and often think back to my middle and high school art classes.  When I doodle, I realize that I have relied mainly on the techniques of shading, perspective, and human portraiture that I learned in those years.

Maybe one day I'll buy and eat lots of vegetables - maybe even local ones - and really enjoy it!  (Well... ya never know!)

Maybe one day I'll play soccer again.

Maybe one day isn't too far away...?

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Stream of Consciousness

Sometimes a friend of mine who also keeps a blog (much more regularly than I do!) will write in a stream of consciousness.  I thought I'd try it out.

I love sitting by a big window with a great view and lots of sunshine coming in.  Even with the chill outside, the sun makes everything warmer and brighter.  It definitely is a mood-booster!

This afternoon I sat down determined to accomplish three things:  finish editing my brochure, determine the current list of people I need to contact and make sure I have all of their contact information, and fill out a short term mission application.

How often do temporal things take my mind off the eternal?  I get so distracted by this life.  I want Jesus to come back.

I've been stubborn lately.  Prideful.  Self-centered.  But God lifts my eyes back to the cross.  Back to the One who died for my stubborness and pride and self-centeredness.  It's not about me.  It's about what He's done for me.  Thank you, Jesus.  Precious Jesus.

I don't understand you.  I can't comprehend you.  Often you seem disappointed in me.  I feel like I'm letting you down.  When do I go out of my comfort zone for you?  Why am I so fearful?

But you are well please in me.  Because of what you have done for me.  I am your child.  I can add nothing to my own righteousness or improve how you see me.  You see everything.  Jesus plus nothing.  The gospel plus nothing.  It is finished.

You make beautiful things.  You make beautiful things out of dust.  You make beautiful things out of us.  You make beauty out of ashes.  And you're making me new.  Every day.

Lord, help me to do what I need to do today.  I can't do it on my own. 

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Making the Transition from Intern to Full-time Staff

My second intern year with Cru is wrapping up.  I loved my time with the Campus Ministry in Madison for my first intern year and I have loved my time with Here's Life Inner City in Milwaukee... that is why I am staying longer term and joining staff!  The differences between interning and joining full time staff are subtle, but the biggest differences are that as an intern, I committed to one year with a ministry of Cru and had a variety of responsibilities and experiences.  As full-time staff, I am committed to at least three to five years and will be focusing in on specific areas of ministry that will be my full responsibility.

The next step is attending the first part of New Staff Training at the Cru headquarters in Orlando.  After that, I will be headed to Madison for the fall, with other visits planned to Minnesota and Missouri, to reconnect with current supporters and develop new ministry partners.  I am looking forward to growing in my relationship with the Lord during this time and making connections with the faithful people who have partnered with me in advancing the gospel in Milwaukee.

Milwaukee has become my home, but I am excited to spend the fall in Madison.  I love the farmer's market, Badger game days, visiting friends, and consuming great amounts of coffee.  I got a small taste of all this over Labor Day weekend.  Here's a picture with my friend Emily who invited me to the Badger game:

Photo: Opening day for Badger football! Biggest crowd I've seen at Camp Randle. #onwisconsin

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Scenes of Summer

I love summer project!  Sure, there are times when I'm so exhausted I just want to cry, but there are also really sweet times when I get to see the Lord bring people into relationship with Him and lives are changed.  Here are a few scenes from this summer:

Ethiopian staff, Bety, and I went sharing together out on the shores of Lake Michigan.  We shared the gospel with a couple from Pakistan and a Hmong couple.  So fun to see the gospel going to the nations right in Milwaukee!
For a social, all of the staff dressed up in disguises and tried to blend in on a popular shopping street while students were given the task of being on the lookout for us.  My friend Kara is on the left as a teenage boy, and I went as a runner.

Our students partner with several of our partner ministries to empower their efforts in reaching children and adults with the gospel.  Above, student Trish demonstrates what it's like to try to hide things from God - it's impossible because He can see deep into our hearts.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Glory Never Fading!

I love Easter week!  When I was growing up, my family would usually attend a Good Friday service in which a message was given, songs were sung...the usual.  Except, we all walked out silently - silent as the grave, which was the point.  My heart ached for the sorrow that came with Jesus' death.  But I knew - Sunday had to come.  And to quote one of my dad's favorite hymns, "Up from the grave he arose!  With a mighty triumph o'er his foes!  He arose the victor from the dark domain and he'll live forever with his saints to reign!  He arose!"  Man - it just made me want to burst with joy!

Easter Sunday became even more special to me a few years ago.  After my first summer in Milwaukee, I had grown in my understanding of the Spirit-filled life - a life directed and empowered by Jesus.  My life was not my own - He had died and rose again and had taken up residence in my heart.  That next Easter, I could not raise my arms high enough or my voice loud enough to proclaim my gratitude.  I realized how very much I deserved to be in the grave, but how great his love for me had been.

And this week, I'm realizing how shallow my view of what he has done for me really is... my thoughts usually dwell on myself and my needs or wants.  Perhaps once in a while I will think of others.  But Jesus is the ultimate example of selflessness.  I do not understand a love that deep, but I'm praying God would deepen my knowledge.

Tonight, I was reading Romans 8 and came across verse 18: "For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed in us."  I am thankful for my resurrected Savior because my hope in him can never fail and his glory will never fade.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Chardinay's Story

My friend Kara has been mentoring two sisters, Alexius and Chardinay, now 11 and 13.  Watch the video to hear what God has done in Chardinay's life.

As Chardinay is now entering her teen years, there is a lot of pressure from her peers and lot of changes that she is experiencing - please pray that she would turn to Jesus to be a light to her peers instead of being negatively influenced by them!

Sunday, February 19, 2012

A few Silly Poems About Life

On Valentine's Day, tried that I might,
the donuts I made did not turn out right.
Crispy on the outside, doughy in the middle-
Frying them right, to me, was a riddle!

Pasta "Party"?
Pasta prepared and house cleaned up nice
Just waiting on people to come add the spice.
Tummy is grumbling, house feeling lonely-
Come quick, so it's not me and the duck only!

Statue (Shout out to Auntie Mouse - I've been playing this recently :)
Running and giggling, I struck a still pose
When my nose was pushed, my body arose
I came alive in a dance from my statuesque role
Will the "buyer" choose me to put on his knoll?