Friday, June 10, 2011

Growing...



I haven't blogged in a while, but I have a very special thing on my heart that some of you may enjoy reading:

About 8 months ago, I felt lead to become an EBA Summer Missionary. I had heard about it through many people, and I thought that it would be a very productive way to spend my summer. God continued to tug on my heart for the next few months about it, and I finally decided that I would give it a try. I applied, interviewed, and was accepted as a Summer Missionary in April. I was excited but also nervous about what was ahead. I knew little about the program, really. I wasn't quite sure what I was getting myself into.

Orientation started one weekend in May. I was so nervous. When I walked in that room with all the other Summer Missionaries, I didn't really know anyone. Little did I know that 21 hours of orientation that weekend would give me about 15 of the closet friends I think I will ever have.

At the beginning of orientation, I'm pretty sure I was definitely one of the more quiet ones. I never really have much to say, so most of the time I just keep my mouth shut. That changed.

On the first day, we received these huge binders with our name, the VBS logo, and some other stuff on it. I felt official. When I opened that binder up, I was all smiles until I saw the schedule. Everyone had to share their testimony. I was even more nervous now. If you know me well, you probably know that I don't really enjoy speaking in front of a group of people, but as the week went on, I was getting a little excited about sharing my testimony with my team. It didn't mean that I wasn't still nervous, but at least I had a little time to think about what I was going to say.

That Wednesday night, I shared my testimony. I probably talked for 15 minutes, but it seemed like an hour. I was nervous but also excited that I was getting to share my story. Somewhere along the line, the schedule got mixed up, and we had skipped a couple of people sharing their testimony. I believe that this happened for a reason. After sharing my testimony, Sarah LeCroy, who was supposed to go the night before, shared hers. It was crazy to see some of the similarities between the two, and I may not have noticed it as much if she would've gone when she was scheduled. I couldn't help but to feel this special bond with her. This is when I knew that being a Summer Missionary was what I was supposed to be doing.

After orientation was over, and I was almost completely comfortable with my team, we started the hard work. Multiple trips to the Mission Center and to various community centers suddenly developed me into a different person. I now truly have a heart for missions. If you asked me a month ago how I felt about missions, the answer would be nowhere near what it is now. I know God has great plans for me to serve in the future.

Now, after working two Bible schools this week and having fun with my team, I have seen so much change in my heart. If you asked me to sing or dance in front of anyone a month ago, I would've never done it. Now getting up on stage at VBS to sing and dance is my favorite part of each day. If you asked me to speak in front of a group a month ago, I would've chickened out. Now I'm confident that God speaks through me when I have to speak to a whole church group about our program, and I don't have to worry.

Next week is a big one. I'll be leading youth at a church I've never been to. I'm nervous, but I'm also confident that God will pull me through after seeing what He has done in my life in the past few weeks.

It really is a good feeling to feel like you're growing so much and to see God in it all. I know that I will be a completely different person by the time this is all over with. I thank God for the awesome opportunity I have been given. I wouldn't trade it for anything.

Please pray for our team and for the people we're going to be reaching this summer!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Updated Facts About Me

I've changed a lot since July of last year, so I thought I would update this:

1. I've been in college for almost two semesters, and I still don't understand why everyone loves it so much.

2. Even though 2010 involved a lot of spiritual growth for me, I think that I have grown even more in 2011.

3. I have officially been a member of White Springs Baptist Church for a year. I really don't know what I would do without my church. God has opened so many doors through the people I've met there, and I'm so thankful He placed me there when He did.

4. I was 17 the last time I posted on my blog. I'll be 19 pretty soon, but I still feel like a little kid sometimes.

5. I'm still a complete perfectionist when it comes to spelling and grammar. It still hurts me to see a misspelled word. That fact will never change.

6. I know now that the way I think is DEFINITELY way different than any other person my age...or anyone at all.

7. I still love John Mayer. That fact is just a given. Since my last post, I have seen him in concert again...and I will see him again next time he's on tour.

8. I'm still an impatient driver. I'm working on it. Some would laugh, but putting a Jesus fish on my car was a huge step for me. I'm not the nicest person on the road sometimes...

9. I still burn up the roads. My car hit 97,000 miles on my way home tonight. My dad isn't very happy with me right now.

10. I'm at JSU now, and my major is still Elementary Ed. I have no clue what I want to do...

11. I still miss high school more than anything. I would do it all over again.

12. I've gotten to play two concerts this season with the EYO. I miss it so much, but I'm still around sometimes.

13. I still take a ton of pictures. Actually, I take more now. I recently got a Nikon D3100 DSLR camera, and I LOVE it.

14. I still get on Facebook, but not quite as much. I don't find it very interesting anymore.

15. I still have a hard time coming up with things to write about. It's going to kill me when I have to write a research paper this week.

16. I have at least 5 posts that aren't "posted" on my blog. Most of them are all on the same subject. They were all written last summer, mostly as a way to gather my thoughts. It's crazy to read them now because of the things God has allowed to happen in my life in the past few months. I may post them one day.

17. I've learned over the past year that there is no such thing as coincidence. I've seen God in so many things lately. It's gotten to the point where I'll pick out every little detail and say, "If that wouldn't have happened, this couldn't have happened," and stuff like that. I can't even explain it. Ask me about it sometime.

18. God has this one certain way of getting my attention. It's the weirdest thing ever, but only He could figure out that this would catch my attention. He decides to make it happen quite often.

19. I've really been reminded lately that God has placed many wonderful people in my life.

20. I really think that I'm weird. I guess I shouldn't wonder so much about what other people think, but that's just how I am.