Thursday, November 19, 2009

You Are Everything

This song is amazing.... So needed. Mm.. God needs to not only be something in my life, but He needs to be EVERYTHING.

You Are Everything
By: Phil Wickham

Jesus, You're my everything
And my heart beats for you
Filled with power and mystery
Lord, I thirst for you
You are everything
You are everything

Lord, You are beautiful
Awesome and wonderful
I give You all of my life
Lord, You're the song I sing
Perfect in everything
I give You all of my life
For You are everything

You're the stone I rest upon
I find peace in You
I love You, Lord with all my heart
I place my hope in You
For You are everything
You are everything

Lord, You are beautiful
Awesome and wonderful
I give You all of my life
Lord, You're the song I sing
Perfect in everything
I give You all of my life
For You are everything

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

We Are No Better.

Just a little while ago I started my personal study on the book of Romans, but while in the middle of chapter one, I had to stop. I was overwhelmed and filled with emotion because of my encounter with God. I was reading through Romans 1:18-32 when this emotion rose up within me, which some may deem as strange given that this passage just talks about God's wrath against the ungodliness of men. But before you continue reading on, read that passage, and maybe you'll see what I'm talking about.

Yes, God gives ungodly men up to their sinful desires and lusts if they decide to reject Him. I know someone who believes that God cannot feel hurt or pain, but that He simply does what He needs to do so that He can get the glory. I REFUSE to believe that. I refuse to believe that God is cold and unfeeling. While He knows that not all men will be saved, 2 Peter 3:9 says, "The Lord is not slow to fulfill His promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance." God WANTS the people of this world to come to Himself. He does NOT want people to suffer eternal punishment, but He knows that it is necessary in order for Him to be God. Not only is He a loving God, but He is a just God. There comes a point where God has to allow people to reject Him.

But I cannot imagine that this is easy for Him. At all. Think about it: God is the Father over all creation, and He loves the entire world. While we don't deserve His love, He loves us. He loves even those that choose to reject Him. So just as a Father feels pain over a child that has chosen to stray from the family and live a life of debauchery, so God feels pain over a person who sees God, spits in His face, and decides that they will live life on their own terms. What astounds me is that God KNOWS that this will happen. He KNOWS that people will reject Him. Yet He still feels pain over it, because He is an absolutely loving God.

This passage is so convicting in so many ways. God feels pain over those who reject Him, so why is it so often that I just blow people off? I hear about people getting so drunk that they can't remember what they did and end up sick the next day and just scoff at them and believe that they get what they deserve. I see girls being incredibly promiscuous and call them sluts. Oh, what a shameful Christian I am. I should not think of myself as better than them, but I should be hurting that they would choose a life like that over a relationship with Jesus Christ!

Never have I felt so convicted than in this moment that I should be praying for those who have turned away from God and have chosen to live a life of sin. One of the people I care about most lives so far away from God that few would think that he has any hope of being in a right relationship with God. I again refuse to believe that. While God does give people up to live their lives of sin, it is our job to intercede on their behalf and to ask God not to pour out His wrath on them, but to save them. I think our willingness to pray for those who are lost shows how much we really care about these people and their eternal destination. Am I too focused on myself and my "spiritual superiority" (ha.) to see that these people are no worse than I am, and that I need a Savior JUST as much as they do? I am no better, yet God chose to save me. Therefore I must pray that God will choose to save others.

If anyone is confused about whether or not those who continually choose to live against God's plan for them are worse than us "holy Christians," then let verses 29-32 be evidence that we are all on the same level.

They were filled with all manner of unrighteousness, evil, covetousness, malice. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit, maliciousness. They are gossips, slanderers, haters of God, insolent, haughty, boastful, inventors of evil, disobedient to parents, foolish, faithless, heartless, ruthless. Though they know God's decree that those who practice such things deserve to die, they not only do them but give approval to those who practice them.

There is not one person that can honestly say that they have never done any of the things on this list. We all have done at least one thing, but most often it's that we've done several of these. We as Christians are no better than anyone else, so there is no reason why we should not pray for those in our lives that we know are lost.

Rise up, fellow believers, and see what God sees in humankind. Do not allow Satan to have any victories over anyone, but take hold of the victory that we have already claimed in Christ Jesus, and show Satan that he has NO power in this world. In the end, it is God, and God alone, who will overcome.


Heal my heart and make it clean
Open up my eyes to the things unseen
Show me how to love like You have loved me

Break my heart for what breaks Yours
Everything I am for Your Kingdom's cause
As I walk from earth into eternity

Monday, November 16, 2009

Changing it Up.

Well, I think for my blog today I'm going to try and change it up. Instead of talking about issues and certain things that I've been thinking about lately, I think I'm just going to give an update on my life to this point.

So, first semester is almost over, and it seems absolutely insane to me that I only have one more semester to go before I'm a senior. A SENIOR. That scares me just to think about that, because I know what it means to be a senior. Good gracious, I'm not old enough. Anyway, this year I switched dorms that I lived in, and it has been absolutely wonderful. I'm not the type of person who can live in Houghton. I'm more independent and while I value community, I want to be able to have my time alone, too. Smith Hall definitely does that for me. I'm on the fifth floor, and while I'm disappointed that I don't know everyone on my floor, the women I do know are absolutely wonderful.

First off, there's my roommate, Michelle. I didn't know her coming into this year, but I'm so glad that we're roommates. She's another transfer from Spokane, but she came this year instead of last year with a different group. While we've had a couple of rough moments, I think our roommate relationship is great, and I've really enjoyed getting to know her and being her roommate. I'm excited to see what God has in store for our friendship in the next semester.

There are definitely other girls on the floor that I have absolutely loved getting to know. Andrea, Annie, Allie, Kelsi, Lauren, Rachel, Kara, Renee, Julie, Lisa.... and those are just a few. They have all been so great. Yesterday Andrea and I went to Berry Chill on a whim, and that was SO much fun. I think that she and I are giggle buddies. We've had some really good times which have included "Team Awesome", bananas, and John Jensen. :D

Mentioning John makes me think of my brother floor, and those guys are definitely awesome. Last year my brother floor was great, but this year is even better because I feel like we've actually connected as a bro/sis instead of it just being a few people who are friends. I've had so much fun with Jeff, David, Steven, Jeremy, Darryl, Matt, Jake, Joel, and others. Darryl now knows that he can't bet against me, otherwise he'll have to do push-ups. :D They're all really good guys, and I'm privileged to be able to get to know them.
The inauguration of our new president was this semester as well, and I am so thrilled that I got to be here to see that. Dr. Nyquist is going to be a great president, and I am so excited to see how God decides to use him.

While it's been a fun semester, it also has been the most difficult semester of my life. My break-up this summer definitely took more of a toll on me than I ever realized that it would, and I've just recently gotten to the point where I can completely move on from it. I am definitely thankful to God that I can move on, but it took A LOT to actually get to that point. I spent nights just crying in my bed after my roommate went to sleep because I was so focused on all the bad things going on and the aftermath of my relationship. God has granted me the ability to completely move on and see a different aspect of life though, and I thank him SO much for that.

I also changed my major somewhat this semester. I'm still women's ministry, but I'm now an interdisciplinary with biblical languages. Basically that means I'm going to die in my last 2 semesters. :) Especially 1st semester next year because I'll be taking Greek Exegesis and Hebrew Grammar I at the same time. But I think it's totally worth it, so I'll kill myself trying. :D I'm definitely so grateful for the opportunity to learn the original languages that the Bible was written in, because I think it will be very helpful in my future ministry.

God is good, and has blessed me with so many things. While it is difficult to see that sometimes, I know that He is there and He is looking out for my best interest, and for His glory at the same time. I have grown SO much this semester, and I'm excited to see how He decides to grow me in the near future.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

This and That.

I've been thinking a lot lately about my blog, and about the types of things I talk about and have talked about. What I'm realizing is that there have been many times where I have revealed more than I should on here. Now I'm not saying that all of my posts or even a lot of them have done this, but I know that at least a couple have been over the line. Not that they're not good topics, but there are some things that are better being unsaid.

Mostly I'm referring to my blog titled, "No-no." I'm still okay with the fact that I have that blog, but I do realize that I overstepped some boundaries with that, and I should not have posted ALL of it. I'll know better for the future.

I think that's something that anyone who is going to be involved in ministry has to learn, is that we're not going to get it right every single time, or even most of the time. We're going to mess up. We're going to look like fools, and we're going to say things that are going to shock some people because we've overstepped our boundaries. After we've learned what we've done wrong though, we need to know how to apologize.

I have a "friend" (and I may have talked about this before) who doesn't care at ALL about what anyone thinks about him, and isn't willing to change for anyone. Now, this can be a good thing and a bad thing at the same time. Yes, it's great that he does not want to give in to what other people may think that he should do, but there is also wisdom in learning from other people and truly listening to what they may have to say. If we only listen to ourselves and do not listen to others around us, I think we are in great danger of making some huge mistakes.

God has placed other people in our lives for a reason, and while we do not need to take heed to EVERYTHING that they say, we need to at least chew on it and see what we think about their advice. It could turn out to be wrong advice or with bad intentions, but we need to meditate on what people have to say to us in case God may be speaking to us through them.

So to those who have been offended by my posts in the past and I just haven't wanted to listen, I apologize. I realize now that it is important to listen to others and not to dispel all of my "dirty" laundry for everyone to see. To reveal it to some is fine, but it is not okay to reveal it to all.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Learning to Breathe Again.

Life is going to get good again. I can feel it, and I'm so excited. To be completely honest, life has sucked up to this point in the semester. It has been the most stressful and difficult semester I've ever had, and I'm ready for it to be over. It actually hasn't been very stressful academically, but it has been so hard in the areas of my emotions and my spirituality.

It was twenty times more difficult to get over my ex than I thought it would be, but I completely cut off communication with him and I feel so completely free now. I had never realized just how much he had manipulated and used me throughout our relationship and our friendship. I know that I am a strong woman, and I deserve better than that, that's for sure. I won't stand for being treated less than I should be. Right now my ex and I are taking a month apart, but I have a feeling at the end of the month I won't care if I ever talk to him again.

In regards to my most previous post on the topic of prayer, God has revealed Himself even more to me throughout this whole situation. It is more than okay for me to pray for the things that I want and I long for, but if I also pray that God will do His will in the situation, then He will eventually change my desires to look more like His, and will help the pain to dissipate.


I have a friend who, for our women's ministry mini-retreat read to us from Phil Vischer's book, "Sid and Norman: a Tale of Two Pigs." It sounds like a silly children's book, but when she read it to us I almost cried, and I also checked it out of the library a few days ago in order to read it again. The premise of this book is that there are two pigs who live next door to each other, but are complete opposites. The first one is Norman, who is an upstanding pig that always has his tie completely straight and tends to look down on others, and then there's Sidney who wishes he could be like him, but always seems to get everything messed up. His house is always a mess, his tie is never straight, he always gets in trouble, is always late for things, and can never be organized.

Both of the pigs get invited to talk to God one day, and while Norman is excited, Sidney is completely dreading and terrifed of the entire situation. Norman is sure that God is going to give him an award for being such a good pig, but this is not what happens. He walks in and God simply tells him that He loves him, but it's not because of his goodness that He loves him. He then tells Norman to stop looking down on other people and to realize that He loves them just as much as him.

Then comes in Sidney. Sidney is just sure that God is going to chastise him for not being good enough and for always messes up, but God again just simply tells him, "I love you." And then he said, "Secondly, I love you. I love you, I love you, I love you." God did not want to tell Sidney everything that he was doing wrong. He simply wanted to tell him that He loved him just the way he was.


I would highly recommend reading this book (Yes, it's a kids' book!) because of how encouraging and moving it is. I find that I identify myself with Sidney SO much. I feel as though I am always so disorganized and I can never get anything right, but the only ipmortant thing is how much God loves me. He doesn't love me because of anything I do or don't do, but simply because He can. This is huge, and makes me realize how awesome and wonderful He really is.

God's goodness is beyond comprehension and beyond anything that we could ever imagine. Just when I think that I understand and that He can't possibly be good to me because of how I've messed up, He continues to surprise me.

Praise God, from Whom all blessings flow;
Praise Him, all creatures here below;
Praise Him above, ye heavenly host;
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.