Saturday, December 26, 2009


i saw invictus today and it was really good! i was missing africa, especially the kids, within the first five minutes of the movie. my sister, who's been to south africa, said it's fairly accurate to the attitudes of the countrymen, but still unrealistic in many ways.

but i was paying a lot of attention to matt damon's role. at first, all i cared about was how good he looked in a rugby uniform, because, please believe, he looks real good in a rugby uniform. but my mind kept going back and forth between my experiences in rwanda and matt damon's character. see, he plays the team captain that, of course, plays a crucial part in uniting the team and helping them see what a big role they will play in uniting the country. his teammates called him "capi," (get it? short for captain?). he had this important intermediary role of mediating between team and coach, springbok organization and president mandela.


it all made sense! so often i had had the picture in my head that i should be the tendon while being a student leader of an isp team, connecting two separate entities, muscle and bone. but this never made sense to me practically. the idea of a team captain, though-oh my-what sense that makes! i look forward to this new phase of research as i dive into what a team captain's role is and how to practically carry that out, how to mediate between coach and team, but still be play on the team.

i'm excited because i'm on a high from a movie. i'm nervous because i've always sucked at sports-why should this be any different?

a quick update

i'm not sure who really reads this, but i thought i better make a quick update.

i went up to visit family this past week, specifically the aunt who lost her husband just over a week ago. she is doing well and so is the family. one of my uncles, who is not a follower or a believer, said we must all be doing so well with it "because of our religion." interesting. welp, he gets it-at least kinda.

it kinda sucks being at home. the lack of personal space and independence is starting to grind on me and that, in turn, grinds on the fam.

well, off to see invictus with the seester and cousin!

Friday, December 18, 2009


i left my computer in IT over break in hopes that they could fix the wireless, which probably won't happen. so i'm using my sister's computer over break.

i was trying to find a potential family photo to use for a christmas card, (that's right folks, we STILL haven't done one yet), and i happened upon some amazing pics. here are a few of my favs:

my seester and i drinkin date shakes, something we did as kids

my roommate from last year and probably the best ra ever

my cousin and one of my aunts in redding

my gammy and i at my "uncle's" memorial

my seester and i at joshua tree

ok, the best are yet to come....

my seester and dad choppin down the tree last year

me and the momma at the tree farm last year (she cracks me up!)

my uncle "jack" as he likes to me known as (as in jack ass)

and truly the best photo EVER!

my dad. i literally laughed out loud.

anyway, these are the narrowed down bunch. i hope the brighten your day!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

(insert title here)

my dad called about two hours ago and told me my uncle died.

two uncles in one year. awesome.

i haven't cried yet. this time it was more expected. he has been sick for a long time. but dude, i still can't believe it.

i rejoice greatly that when i think about this man, i think of matthew 5:5 when Jesus says, "Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth." or even romans 12:16 and 18, "Live in harmony..." and "live peaceably with all."

i rejoice that he loves Jesus and acknowledges Him not only as Savior, but as Lord!

i rejoice that God took a hold of his life for a purpose.

however, my heart aches for my aunt and my family who seem so far away right now. i don't want to finish finals, but i want to race to redding to see them and pray with them and simple be. no, we weren't super close. i'm sure my sister and mom are tore up, but it doesn't make the pain any less. i must find strength and peace that God will comfort them in ways that i never can.

there. i cried.

blessed are

i love reading through books of the Bible at different times of my life. no matter how many times i read philippians, i get something new from it. the Word truly is, living and active!

i'm headed to south asia and to prepare to not only share the gospel in a dark place, but to help lead a team, i wanted to have "stories" and ways about Jesus fresh in my mind. i didn't know what gospel to start in, so my friend suggested matthew and we're reading it together. (ps-she recently posted a blog in regards to matthew as well and it's WAY more articulate! check it out!)


it's not like i haven't read matthew before. at fbc we spent how many years studying it together? how many times have i heard the event of john the baptist blasting the pharisies? how many times have i read and heard about Jesus being tempted in the wilderness? (ps-have you read this lately? another AMAZING section of scripture that is totally overlooked and underplayed!) the themes are already so beautiful and i'm only on chapter five!

i keep getting caught up in the "blessed" passages, more commonly known as "the beatitudes" (whatever the heck that means).

in church on sunday, sean talked about verse nine:

"Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God."

i am not a peacemaker. i do not intentionally go out of my way to create peace in my life. but i should.

but i read this section again and was utterly moved by verse eight:

"Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God."

in the summer, i went to a conference about killing sin and pursuing holiness. a few months ago i went to a retreat and we talked a little bit about holiness. pursuing holiness. the pure in heart. dude, i'm no scholar, but this seem connected to me. i suck at so much! i praise God that He continues to teach me about it and that He hasn't left me in my sin, but i want to be so stripped of impurities, no matter how small!!! i know it isn't possible now, but i hate sin. i hate that i think it's good at times.

my new prayer:

"Lord, i want to see you; make me pure of heart."

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


december marks the remembrance of many important dates. below are a few. for more, go here.

12/1-world AIDs day
12/7-Pearl Harbor Remembrance day
12/21-winter solstace
12/25-celebration of the birth of the Christ
12/31-new years eve

most importantly is of course the commemoration of the birth of Christ. without this birth, there would be no reconciliation, no grace, no forgiveness. truly, this is a miracle of monstrous proportions.

because of this amazing, unmatchable gift, i have the privelege of going overseas this summer with isp. i'll be headed to south asia with an amazing team! oh Lord, how you continue to bless me despite my doubts and fears! i cannot fathom your greatness!!!

i cannot believe that this time has come again. i am excited and scared to be leading this team of amazing people in even a small way.

i'm sure so many more blogs about this experience will come.

Friday, December 4, 2009

may 2010

this may, i'll be going out of the country again. God is allowing me to go somewhere i have never been before and i'm super excited! it just hit me how intense this experience be. and i'm so excited!!! i've loved my past experiences overseas. my teams have challenged me, the cultures have rocked me, and the Lord has broken me.

this year, i will be physically challenged like never before. i will have to face some things i haven't wanted to face in a group of people, basically ever. i'm student leading and feel so honored to be doing so. i want to pee my pants, though. i'm going to have to set aside my ideals of a high power distance and discuss things with my faculty co-leaders. ahh!! i will have to set aside my pride like never before and serve with humility and selflessness in a new way.

i don't know what's in store for me or my team this semester, but i'm so looking forward to God moving mighily through us! i can't wait to kick some hiking butt!!!

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

the cross

the title is way more epic than this blog will be.

i'm in the library trying to pump out the last page of a paper about american indians and their health, but i made an almost tragic mistake that lead me to blog. i started listening to shane and shane to block out the chatty cathies next to me.

the song that that led to my "downfall:" it is well with my soul. live from the passion conference.

the one line that struck me like never before: "it is nailed to the cross and i bear it no more"

so why do i live as if i do? why do i convince myself that sin is easier?

oh no, it is dead. it crucified with Christ. may i learn to let it be dead. may i learn to live in the absolute wonder of the living Christ!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

psalm 143

i've spent most of the school year in the latter 100s of the psalms. in part, because i'm a slacker and, in part, because they grip me.

Hear my prayer, O LORD;
give ear to my pleas for mercy!
In your faithfulness answer me, in your righteousness!
Enter not into judgment with your servant,
for no one living is righteous before you.

For the enemy has pursued my soul;
he has crushed my life to the ground;
he has made me sit in darkness like those long dead.
Therefore my spirit faints within me;
my heart within me is appalled.

I remember the days of old;
I meditate on all that you have done;
I ponder the work of your hands.
I stretch out my hands to you;
my soul thirsts for you like a parched land.

Answer me quickly, O LORD!
My spirit fails!
Hide not your face from me,
lest I be like those who go down to the pit.
Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love,
for in you I trust.
Make me know the way I should go,
for to you I lift up my soul.

Deliver me from my enemies, O LORD!
I have fled to you for refuge!
Teach me to do your will,
for you are my God!
Let your good Spirit lead me
on level ground!

For your name’s sake, O LORD, preserve my life!
In your righteousness bring my soul out of trouble!
And in your steadfast love you will cut off my enemies,
and you will destroy all the adversaries of my soul,
for I am your servant.

it has been a hard semester, mostly because i feel so far away from stuff going on that seems more important than where i currently am. but truly, God is preparing me. at least, right now, it seems this is so. as i was driving home this weekend, i had this utter shock that one day, one glorious day when i'm oversease, i won't just be able to drive home. my "family" won't be just down the streeet or up the five, but they will be around the world. i'm scared to leave them. not because God will stop using either of us, but because i won't get to experience life with them. that's what i'm missing so badly right now. but there are people dying without knowing the wonderful news about Jesus. that i cannot stand for. so my new prayer for my "family" is not for restoration or for strength in this time, but for a passion and conviction about the nations. selfishly in a sense, yes. i would love and be honored to serve long-term with however many of them on the field, but moreover, i just want one more thing to be like minded about them with. but God is supreme; His desire will reign! He knows what He wants from our group. (i know some of you are reading this. i'm just being honest and i'm not saying you don't have a heart for the nations, maybe i'm just saying i'd loved to see us moved to action in a different way)

so there's my heart. i don't really know the capacity that it fits in with psalm 143, but it's there anyway.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

this might be long

i haven't really taken time to process as of late. well, really this entire semester. maybe just one weekend and i didn't even get to really process all that i learned then.

right now, i feel like crap. things are going just fine: i did well on my midterm, passing my classes, riding my bike places, still lovin my car, and the sermon at church was super. i just feel like i am in a rut and can't get out. i want to be utterly consumed with God!!! i want the Holy Spirit to consume me, to constrain me!!! i want my desires to be His desires!!!

but i'm not living in that reality. i keep sinning. i keep finding myself consumed with this world, tasks, and myself. i love it, but i absolutely HATE it!

i feel like paul in romans 7 "For I have the desire to do what is good, but I cannot carry it out...Now if I do what I do not want to do, it is no longer I who do it, but it is sin living in me that does it" truly, what a wretched man i am!!

today, the sermon was about the need to die to sin, to self. how? is it mere discipline? do i simply rely on the Holy Spirit to refine and go about on my marry way? golly, i just don't know.

this morning before church i listened to a bunch of paul washer "shorts" and needed to respond with some music unto the Lord. the first song that came up was desert song by hillsong. completely broke me.

This is my prayer in the desert
And all that's within me feels dry
This is my prayer in the hunger in me
My God is a God who provides

And this is my prayer in the fire
In weakness or trial or pain
There is a faith proved
Of more worth than gold
So refine me Lord through the flames

And I will bring praise
I will bring praise
No weapon forged against me shall remain

I will rejoice
I will declare
God is my victory and He is here

And this is my prayer in the battle
And triumph is still on it's way
I am a conqueror and co-heir with Christ
So firm on His promise I'll stand

All of my life
In every season
You are still God
I have a reason to sing
I have a reason to worship

This is my prayer in the harvest
When favor and providence flow
I know I'm filled to be empited again
The seed I've recieved I will

i have to/get to speak tomorrow for this thing and i don't even know where to begin. how do i communicate the amazingness of the Lord when i haven't spent much time with Him the past couple of weeks? how do i see anything clearly, including myself, without being able to see God?

don't get all emo on me. this might change tomorrow. i doubt it, but God is bigger than my understanding.

Monday, October 26, 2009

why i go.

i have so much to blog about, but sincerely, i don't have time to write that long of a blog right now.

john piper posted this on his facebook. look at, cry, see the lostness.

i'm not taking a stance for or against the war, but i am taking a stance on the nations, the ethnos. people in those pictures are lost. they have no hope. they have no true King to worship and submit to. that is why i cry. this is why i go.

i'm not trying to play on your emotions, but i want you to see what i see. i want to beg for God to be merciful to them, not by stopping the bombing, but by sending workers to the ripe, rotting harvest. i want you to examine your heart earnestly and be able to tell me that "God really has you here."

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

dear Jesus

Dear Jesus,

First of all, I'm sorry I've been such a pood as of late. My attitude needs to change and I know it. I'm really failing at trying to fix it myself; could you please lend an incredibly strong hand? I'm also incredibly sorry for not staying focused on You, but letting the things of this world consume me, things like school, frustrating situations, lack of human interaction, and concerns for the future. Jesus, thank You for reminding me today that You are SO present. You are too good. Thank You for being faithful despite my infidelity.

Jesus, thank You for these hard times. Thank You that you love me enough to try me, to teach me, to rebuke me. Earnestly I ask that You continue, that we continue along this path. Jesus, never let me forget the cross and the debt that so many might be made holy. Never let me forget such priceless grace.

Thank You, again, dearest Lord and Savior!

Saved by Your Blood Alone,

Friday, October 16, 2009

i just can't wait

i know i've been blogging like crazy the past few days, but it seems to be a good way to express what i'm feeling.

over the past few days, my love and longing for india have been renewed. i want to go back so badly, i truly cannot contain this desire as of late. so, God allowed the psycho reiki lady came to our class and reminded me about the seriousness of the spiritual warfare that is going on in india. the next day, i got some gnarly diarrhea that was quite reminiscent of dehli belly. today, a friend sent me a video reminding me, in the way a defibrillator reminds the heart to beat properly, the persecution that runs rampant in my dear india.

i love interacting with people in india. i love eating the tikka masala and biriani. i even love bartering-to an extent. i love talking about spiritual things and Jesus in every day conversation. i love storying. but God is good. He doesn't want me falling in love with a culture or living in a fairy-tale understanding of this place that has captured my heart, even if it was because of its lostness. how marvelous He is to remind me of the sucky parts.

but i love my desire to go only increases. praise God that He is strong in my weakness!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

from pure hatred to intuition consultation

this has been a really hard week. my nursing friends and i were discussing how we feel like we don't have restorative sleep, feel as if we want to sleep all day, and are in a constant state of alert. this is never good. never. we have two clinicals a week and the clinical group i found myself in seems to get screwed all the time, particularly this semester. from multiple clinical instructors, to no home visits and no guidelines and hard grading, to saying we don't critically think, it seems as if anger has been my primary response.

and i hate it.

truly loathe it. God has called us to rejoice in suffering and to praise His name through circumstances through trusting and relying on Him. i'm not doing that. i'm trying to do things in my strength and i am failing miserably. i'm teaching children's church on sunday and this just happens to be the topic. ironic or God ordained? hmmm.

today, i found out one of my professors has cancer. suck. for the last two weeks in class, we've been learning about alternative therapies, and the last two weeks we've had a "reiki" person/master/crap-artist teaching us about energy. basically, it's hinduism with Jesus thrown in. i don't care if she has believes in some energy crap, (well, i do, but that's another blog), but honestly, why must Jesus be distorted through this belief? why must Jesus' name, again, be defamed!?

these are my stressors. i want them gone. i the peace of Christ that passes all understanding to once again overtake all that i am so as to reflect Christ! i want to love even when it is the hardest thing to do! and i want to see Jesus exalted through this craziness called nursing school!

Monday, October 12, 2009


i thought i hadn't blogged in oh so long. truly, it had only been about nine days. oh well. here's what's up:

-still no bike, but hopefully so soon.
-almost caught up on three seasons of 30 Rock. thanks courtney for the revelation and kenneth for setting an example for us all.
-tendinitis is worse. suck.
-i still love ice cream.
-i have struggled with whether or not to go to east asia for christmas. i'm not going. wait, i'm going. nope, not going.
-i think i need a haircut.
-i had my first day in icu-at last-and it was strangely enjoyable. strange.
-i feel disconnected from God too often. i love when sean (senior pastor) prayed that we would have our minds unclouded so that we could see God better. ugh-amazing.
-learned about this weird thing called reiki in one of my class. its so wrong, especially when Jesus is tagged onto it.
-i'm passing my classes with about half of 1/5 of total assignments turned in. this is a marathon, not a sprint...
-can't wait to be home in just over a month to spend time with rg.
-i started looking for jobs already. it's a disease.
-yesterday, i got to hang out with some of the besties and eat pumpkin bar/cake things and listen to theology was all about legalism. talk about good times.
-i wish i could fit into my black capris.
-i'm so glad it's actually fall-ish here so i don't have to wear my capris.

that's about it. lots of work and such ahead. can't wait to come home and fellowship and feel like this part of my life (ie school) is over. i love learning and i am so grateful for having the ability to learn, but dude, i feel stunted in this place-and that sucks major.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

love hate relationships

i'm currently in four:

India: this one is well known. i blog about it often. i LOVE the people, the food, the ever-changing smells consumed while on an auto. i HATE the treatment of people, the starvation, the smell of feces and utter lostness.

Verizon: silly, but here we go. i LOVE that i can make a call pretty much anywhere. i HATE that i feel like i get ripped off every time i go into the store because my objective for going in was not really met.

Nursing School:
while i may not have blogged about this relationship, it is ever present in my life. i LOVE learning, my profs, and meeting and working with people who need healing and restoration in many aspects of life. i HATE the consuming homework, the know-it-all profs, and the ridiculous whining that seems to consume us all when faced with bad answers from a test. dumb.

oh yes, target. this is the newest of my love-hate relationships. i LOVE target because it has my shampoo at a fair cost, there are often great movie deals, and clearance items cannot be beat. i HATE target because they train their employees to know just enough to get by, but not to have any kind of expertise; they sell specialty products, but don't know how to fix them; and when you return something, (no matter the dollar amount), they give it back to you via gift card. uber dumb.

i know there are worse things in the world than target, but i wish companies would just have some integrity and help proceed to actual meet the customers' needs. any business minded people in the house? take note, people HATE being ripped off or feeling wronged. try to at least be personable with them. this all stemmed from my bike fiasco. so now i am without, which is good and bad. would love assistance in the bike realm if at all possible. thanks. um, have a great day.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


my friend posted this on her fb. i had seen it before and i'm sure you have too, but today i literally got sick while watching it.

no, Jesus is not proclaimed, but stuff that He taught is. and not just the orphan and the widow line.

i pray that i would be moved to change. i pray that God would compel me to stop loving this world, to forsake it, and to follow Him with my WHOLE heart!!!!

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

new site

no, not me. some of you may have read on that the gospel coalition has a new website. dude, it rocks. you MUST check it out! sermons, books, videos, articles-it's like christmas for the Christ-centered! wait,

Saturday, September 12, 2009


in a class last semester, we were taught the importance of language in understanding cultural norms, behaviors, and, well, the culture period. in a class this semester, i will again, be studying culture, but in the context of nursing/healthcare. since language has yet to be introduced as a major and key importance in understanding another culture, (ok, we've only had one class), i've started to reflect on language. other circumstances in life also make me begin to wonder how vital language is.

welp. instead of conquoring the guitar as my next project, i will be trying to refresh on languages never truly mastered. spanish and asl will be my tasks. this semester, a friend has graciosuly offered to give me informal asl lessons. next semester, i will either take a class (gulp) or simply review with a roomie a language not listend to seriously for almost eight years (double gulp).

i was talking with a prof about going overseas yesterday and challenged both myself and her with the words "for the sake of the cross." i didn't really understnad these words when i got back from india, but now, more and more by the grace of God, these words make more sense. to communicate the Truth with people, i can't be lazy. so, for the sake of the cross, for the namesake and glory of my Lord, this new task i undertake. oh Lord, grant me grace!

Monday, September 7, 2009

looking back

as i reflect back on the past few months, maybe year, i remember questioning grace and asking in earnest to understand what grace means. i told my friend that i "had a hard time with grace" i.e. felt like i had to do stuff to earn favor with God. she challenged me with simple words.

"cindy, you can't do anything to make God love you more or less."

i didn't understand the how these words would resonant with me until now, until a summer filled with teachings about grace and Jesus Christ, until the Holy Spirit moved in my heart and mind. i don't fully understand grace. i don't get how the Creator of all things, including me, could send His Son to die a painful death, a Son who went willingly and bore the wrath of this God and my shame and sin, and then rose again in order to glorify Himself and to restore mankind, including sinful, awful me, to Himself. it makes no sense because i know myself.

however, it makes beautiful sense because God's ways are different than mine and this way resonants in my soul like nothing ever has. glorifying God and enjoying Him forever makes so much sense!

i've been so worried about this year for so many silly reasons, mostly due to the lack of close friends who share such convictions. however, God is abounding is grace and love, for i discovered that a dear friend in my nursing class is also reformed! ok, i know it's just a title, but truly, we hold to some very similar convictions and i feel overwhelmed with God's goodness!!!!

it seems like there's more to write; i'm sure there is. however, i have no words.

Friday, September 4, 2009

the first of many similar blogs

actually, it's not the first. i've blogged a lot about this summer because it has truly been filled with laughter, amazing fellowship, wonderful discussions about an infinitely indescribable God, and grace. i can't get over or communicate how i felt this summer or what i have learn, but since packing is finished and i have said most of my fairwells, all i want to do is cry.

my heart aches to have mid-june and early august back again! i wish i had savoured the moments with such precious friends in such glorious times of prayer and discussion. what i wouldn't give to go back to those "lazy" afternoons in the house talking about the overly-abounding grace of our God, the perfect work and display of Christ, and how badly the giants lost the night before.

i think i can say this with absolute certainty that this has been the best summer of my life. the grace and glory of God has never been more clearly displayed then in these few months and for that i will always be grateful to the Lord. i am excited for my friends as the grow together in grace in the coming months, but i am so sad, (and jealous, i'll admit), to not be a part of it. sure, i have amazing friends at school and they will challenge me and point me to the Lord, but i cherish my friends in a different way because we have grown up together, we have struggled together, we have celebrated together.
God is to be praised for His goodness! i am SO undeserving of such a life, of such friends-nay, family.

ok, enough for now. you will have to read something like this again once culture shock sets in back in riverside. october 16th, COME SOON!

Saturday, August 29, 2009


Ramadan started a week ago. although this post is belated in informing about the commencement of the event, maybe you already knew and this is simply a reminder.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

two weeks

i have about two weeks until i migrate south for the last time, God willing. again, i leave the comfort of family, life-long friends, and seventy-degree weather for the world of academia and dry heat without air conditioning. my feelings are more mixed this year than every before, even though i have done this four times previously.

this summer has been incredible! i went to rwanda, africa to kick it off. i learned tons about what grace doesn't look like and what it means to serve God in rough times and areas. then, i went to palm springs for resolved, heard john piper preach and the Holy Spirit speak volumes into my life. next came alaska and washington on a cruise. lesson learned here was that i get sicker than i ever thought on boats, with no regard to size. then came a job working with an elderly jewish woman. i've learned about grace through this position and i hope i am, at long last, no longer afraid to give a bed bath. a trip up to the deteriorating grandma's, my first best-friend's wedding and off campus came next. the ideas of grace and a well-lived life for the cross were emphasized like never before. oregon came last in terms of adventure.

grace, grace, grace

what a theme of a summer! through leaking cars, plane and car rides, carpel tunnel/tendinitis, four states, dad troubles, a broken computer, and just plain ole' days, grace triumphed all. i'm almost scared to leave this fellowship because i don't want the centrality of Christ and the grace found only through Him to leave the for-front of my mind.

at school, i will hopefully, enter my last year (PTL!!). even getting to this point is a grace of God, but with the hardest year yet to complete, some strange and painful ailment, and a good chunk of my friends graduated and moved on, what does this year hold? what beginnings and endings does the Lord have in store? what trials will i endure for His namesake? what blessings will i have the privilege of having so that i may glorify Him? shoot, i have no clue!!! but with some anxoiusness, i'll admit, i pray and pack, remembering and praising God for this summer and longing to do so in the future!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

hitting parked cars

maybe i have eye trouble or maybe i just gravitate towards stationary objects; whatever the case may be, i seem to have a made a habit of hitting parked cars.

when i was about six or seven and learning how to ride a bike, i decided to take the dog for a walk AND ride my hot, pink bike with a cute basket and training wheels. well, when i was almost finished with the block, i lost control of the dog and the bike, and fell into a parked car, leaving quite a scratch. the people who owned this expensive-looking red sports car came out and preceded to tell this already petrified six or seven year old that the scratch looked pretty deep and that they'd need my phone number to talk to my parents about fixing their damaged vehicle. sobbing, i headed home and had never been on a bike since. (the people called a few days later to tell us that they bought some cheap over the counter stuff to take out the scratch. thanks for traumatizing a young girl, folks!)

let's fast-forward about ten years and put a new form of transportation in my hands-a car. as a matter of fact, a red car, but it was far from a sports car. one warm, sunny october day, this seventeen year old girl was driving home from school on a very familiar street. she felt something quite strange on her face, realized it was a bee, and got distracted by this bee. before she knew it, she had air bags in her face and her car horn was blaring. later, she found had she had hit four parked cars and flipped one in her red ford contour. that street is still no my favorite to drive on and i don't like to drive with the windows down around a lot of flowers.

moving on to present day. this girl decides it is about stinkin' time for her to overcome certain gross motor milestones of old and learn how to ride a stinkin' bike! so, on friday, she gets on a bike and starts to pedal. it's not too bad since it's been so long. but with the mantra in mind (speed+confidence=success) she finally rides for a few feet and around the traffic cirlce. sadly, this slight turn gets her off her grove and the terror of old comes back. a car is just to her right and panic sets in. before brakes can be applied, control is lost and she has fallen into the bronze mercedes. "$%#&*!" she screams (oh yes, swearing occured). who cared about the abrassions on her body, it was the potential car that was of prmary concern. her sister assured her that the rider's body had actually hit the car, not the bike, so unless there was a dent from impact, there should be nothing to worry about.

welp, now this girl (obviously me), is getting the hang of riding a bike. after a near fifteen year absense, it's good to be back ;). not to make this cheesy in anyway, but it is truly by the grace of God that i got on that bike again, or that no one was killed in the car accident, or that the scratch came out of the car fifteen years ago. may He be glorified through this milestone "accomplishment."

next goal: guitar.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

the book that never gets old (part II)

so i finally finished the book of acts this morning. it took me a while to get through it, but what a blessing the account of our God working through such men in this book was! i also had the privileged of reading the last few chapters in a new esv study Bible-a grace gift, as i would like to call it. some quick take-aways:

  • -the esv study Bible rocks! typically if i have a question about something in the text, i no longer have to think about getting my concordance and maybe or maybe not looking it up. it's in my Bible, (27:35). so basically, it's the lazy-christian's Bible ;).
  • -when the apostles talk about conversion, it's kinda how we are taught, (at least i hope this is the Biblical model under which our model is formed). the apostles saw who they once were (a hebrew of hebrews, etc), then they say how they met God, (i saw a vision of the Lord), then they proclaim Christ and Him crucified and risen again, and lastely, the need for all to repent and believe. (26:12-23). I do NOT mean to oversimplify or fomulize the beauty of "conversion," but i DO believe that it is simple and seemingly effective, (but that's probably just the Holy Spirit, right? ;) )
  • -courage and boldness are often prayed for. the disciples and apostles know what harsh circumstances lay before them, yet they acknowledge the Lord and pray to be bold and courageous for His namesake.
these are just a very few things to consider and most of them you probably already know. the main takeaway for me, though, was grace. for it was only through grace that the Holy Spirit worked in these men and women; only by grace that they were given courage to speak truth and die for Christ; only by grace that their eyes were opened to the truth; only by grace that God intervened and sent the God-Man.

***side note: God is so faithful! i have been struggling so much with what grace means and what it looks like and He has answered that abundantely for me this summer. i still have lots to learn, and i think i always will, but what a place to start!***

i'm praying a lot about what a church, a body of Christ, should like. acts is definitely a guide to that, but it is more than 2:42, (not just cause i heard a sermon on that last night). i think it is made of up people who live out 20:24, (also, not fully because i recently heard i sermon on this verse, but in some credit to dave johnson, but most credit to the Holy Spirit).

"But I do not account my life of any value nor as precious to myself, if only I may finish my course and the ministry that I received from the Lord Jesus, to testify to the gospel of the grace of God."

oh, that the body of Christ we be characterized by this attitude! when we, when i, can do this, then we can do 2:42. when our lives are nothing accept for Christ and being witnesses to His! words cannot describe the wonders that i envision! may we be transformed to be such people of humility and grace!

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

sugar in the raw

this is gonna be a long one. the last time i blogged i was complaining about all the crap that seemed to be building up. it's true, my dad is still lost, my car may break down at any moment, and there are still some issues in other areas of life, but the Lord has been so faithful to reveal His goodness to me over the past couple of weeks. so here are a few packets of fair trade sugar to sweeten those lemons:
  • -Psalm 103. i can't stop reading it or getting away from the truths of it. please read it and savor the richness of this text!

  • -Sermons. i knew that during sweet times in my life, i listened to great sermons. so, during walks, cleaning, or just soaking up the much needed sun, i've been listening to grandpa john (acts and romans 9) as well as some david platt. God has truly anointed these men to teach Biblical truths to so many-praise God!

  • -Celebration. My "oldest" friend got married a little over a week ago. how incredible it was to celebrate this union in a Christ-honoring fashion and with those who have been my family for so many years. praise God!

  • -Singing Songs. Christ-centered worship can be so lacking so often in churches, but this summer, it has been such an honor to sing Christ-exalting songs. examples: praise to Jesus Christ in heaven, Jesus paid it all, come ye sinners, and crown Him with many crowns. praise God that he excepts songs as a sweet sacrifice!

  • -Off Campus. we had a our junior high VBS and, while i wasn't there every day, i was challenged by our "theme": follow me-Jesus' command to the whole world (or something to that extent). i was challenged as i listened to speakers and had to teach from scripture myself about what it means to follow this Jesus.

  • -Community. what a healing thing and a blessing to be a part of a Christ-centered community! to pray with them, to cry with them, to dance, laugh, and celebrate with them. these few weeks have felt more like church than i have ever experienced in my life. as we have bore one another's burdens and shared in each other's triumphs, we have gloried and rejoiced humbly in the mighty name of Jesus Christ.
these are a few of the ways that the Lord has chosen to reveal Himself in sweet ways. PRAISE HIM!

Sunday, July 12, 2009

whole basket of lemons

i feel like that's what i've got right now-a whole lot o' lemons and life is tastin' fairly sour. some of my current lemons include a VERY leaky car and a dad that doesn't seem to understand how unsafe i feel driving it, fox-like church drama that makes me super frustrated, having an awkward work schedule and not being able to visit my friends or my grandmother who is really starting to age, and trying to understand and put into practice this balance between grace and living in obedience.

these are my lemons and, right now, i'd trade this basket to be back at cbu taking a stinkin hard critical care test. but i'm supposed to be here. while i hate it so often because my circumstances distract me for the wonders of God around me, He has me here-at least for now. so some classic sayings (as well as countless scriptures) will get me through this rather sour summer; "whatever doesn't kill you will make you stronger" and "when life throws you lemons, make lemonade."

i will hopefully be bringing you some lemonade soon; i'm still trying to find the sugar to make this amount of sour juice sweet enough. obviously, the grace of Jesus Christ shown on the cross should make my heart leap for joy, but like i said, i'm distracted by these circumstances. so, in words of the redeemed paul, "But he said to me, 'My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.' Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. For the sake of Christ, then, I am content with weaknesses, insults, hardships, persecutions, and calamities. For when I am weak, then I am strong."

Sunday, July 5, 2009

where the heck!?

i can't believe it's july already; where did june go!? i look back and realize that june was spent coping with reverse culture shock, grieving the closeness of some friends for the summer while celebrating and catching up with others, turning down one amazing job opportunity in return for another, going to a conference with great people and being challenged by them and by godly words on sin, seeing the beauty of God's creation like i have never seen before, and reading three harry potter books, finishing the saga.

while it was a diverse month, (especially when one begins to talk about john piper and harry potter in the same sentence), i learned much from all of the above. the current chatper in my life is the same as it seems to have been for some time: what does it mean to live confident in the grace of our Lord Jesus and the sufficiency of the cross, but be obedient without being legalistic, diminishing the work done on the cross? the pastor at church quoted something famous today and i think it makes sense-"love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your mind, and live like you want." at first glance it doesn't make sense and even contradicts romans 6, but i would say that as we grow in love and devotion to this incredible God, we can do nothing but worship and obey him. living "as i like," is actually living to bring glory to the Lord through obedience and joy. theoretically, it's easy. practically, it's dang hard! i pray that God would consume my life, so that i may love Him wholey and serve Him out of more than duty, but love.

thanks for listening to the rambling once again.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009


i was just at the most seriously amazing weekend of my life thus far. part of this could have been hearing john piper IN PERSON and then meeting him, or maybe it was spending time listening and learning about sin, or maybe it was driving around socal with my norcal friends and making silly jokes. well, it was most definitely ALL OF THE ABOVE! some things i learned this weekend:
  • -john piper and jonanthan edwards are amazing. it rocks my world that God chooses to use people in such ways!
  • -my attitude sucks so often and thus reflects on my actions. i'm such a control freak and i want things to be how i envision them. NEWS FLASH: ain't happenin girlie.
  • -God can use and actual ordains sin for His glory. i don't think this means that He delights in it or that He causing it, but He must allow it happen because He is sovereign and satan is not.
  • -my friends are amazing. despite my moodiness, they put up with me and love me. thanks
  • -john macaurthur, to put it lightly, did not rock my socks. politics should not be preached from the pulpit. dude, johnny mac, i got it! kill the earth and the bible is not meant for nonchristians! any other points that are actually related to God that you'd like to teach?
  • -driving in cars with boys is not like the movie and is, in fact, often boring. at least you learn that the asymmetry or symmetry of oak trees is a mathematical masterpiece and a reflection of God's glory
  • -we shouldn't just learn cute little words from the bible, but sentences. here are a few: colossians 1:16, ephesians 1:4-6, psalm 42:5, 11. random though those verses may seem, they are glorious when when thinks/dwells on sin and then, moreover, on the glory of Christ!
  • -enfield rocks my world!
  • -i have a lot to learn about battling sin, but am confident that Christ is working in me to will and to act according to His good purpose and, ultimately, His glory according to His grace!
random thoughts put together, but again, it's hard to synthesize such a weekend. to download/listen to the sermons, go here.

oh yea, that's us with john piper. our shirts say "i'm down with grandpa john on the front" and the back says "God is most glorified in you when you are most satisfied in him in the midst of loss, not prosperity." expect to see that around school next year. ;)

Monday, June 8, 2009


welp, i said no to hume last night. my heart still breaks a bit for the missed opportunities that potentially laid ahead. however, i am so sick of missing out good friendships over the summer. i've missed at least six of my friends' weddings over the past four years because of being overseas, work, or school. i want to show my friends how much i value them, not just in word, but in action, no matter how many wedding gifts i have to buy or weddings i have to sit through, (wait, get to sit through?).

this decision has left me jobless once again. i'm headed to the pool today to beg to be put first on the sub's list if not put on the overall schedule. i'm trying to trust in Lord and trying to remind myself of how faithful He is. That doesn't mean i'll get a job, it just means that this time is mean to be spent without a job. i'm grateful in many ways because i've been able to hang out with friends and my blood pressure is low without the stress of a job. also, i'm half way through the fourth harry potter book and i get to spend time with my mom as she recovers.

in other news, ellen and i are fairly convinced that the jeovah's witnesses are targetting our dad; they've been to our house three times since i've been home. please pray that he will resist their words, but fall in love with the Lord Jesus. also, my dad has a good friend who is a Christ follower. Please pray that this man will speak VOLUMES into my dad's life and that my dad's ears would be open.

that's all. cbu friends-miss you and, again, if you're in the sf area, CALL ME!! friendship, after all, is the ship that never fails. ;)

Sunday, June 7, 2009

the book that never gets old

i've been reading the book of acts as of late and am completely blown away! i've read it before in different stages of my life, but i love that at each stage, as God continues to reveal Himself in news ways, in deeper ways, that this book is refreshed and carries deeper meaning. (i know, the entire Bible is like that, but i'm blown away by acts right now, k?)
some observations about acts now that i'm about half way through:
  • followers of Christ are called out, no fear of ridicule or rebuttal from "the other side." (acts 5:3-4)
  • the Holy Spirit worked in mighty wasy in spite of these people the Father had called unto Himself (acts.)
  • there were not only physical transformations (3:6-8), but there were cultural shifts that continue to astound me, (8:4-8, 10:44-48), as well as countless spiritual transformations (2:1-4, 9:1-31)
  • followers of Christ took time to be in awe of the workings of God (11:17-18)
  • do you remember phillip? i sure hadn't! he is my new hero, (not superhero, like Jesus ;)). i mean, when talking about a frontier missionary, one should really reference phillip-he started it all! (8:4-40)
  • it says that they taught about the Lord Jesus as they went places and people believed and were saved. (11:20-21) dude, what if that's all we taught in churches around the world-the LORD JESUS!? biblically, it seems as He alone has the power to save!
  • a friend told me to live in faith, not in fear. this is completely exemplified by the apostles and followers of Christ as they were obedient to the Holy Spirit, trusting in the faithful God (acts.)
these are just some petty thoughts. i know the "early church," as we have coined it, wasn't perfect by any means, but followers of Christ clung to the gospel, refusing to let anyone tamper with its value. i think that is the beauty of the "early church" that so many of us our attracted to. fromt his gospel centrality flows the :ability" to be obedient because Christ is all you have; the ability to live in faith and not fear because, again, Christ is of highest importance. i want to live in gospel centrality. i want to understand, even in the smallest bit, that the resurrected Christ is all that i have!