Thursday, March 31


I was planning on posting something that I'd seen on another blog. It was a survey of sorts, all about music. As a music fanatic, I couldn't pass that up. Then interestingly enough, Pastor Steven's blog the other day was about music. I thought it was an interesting little way God used to point something out to me. Pastor Steven said it so well that I'm going to quote a little bit...

"One area where you refuse to listen to God can lead to a time when you can’t hear Him in any.

One bad note can ruin the whole chord.

What’s your bad note?
Get it in tune now before the masterpiece God has composed for your life is drowned out in a cacophony of contradicting notes."

I thought that last line was BEAUTIFUL. It was also a message that I needed to hear in an analogy that I could definitely relate to and remember. LOVE it when God does that. Check out the rest of that blog and the tons of other encouraging material Pastor Steven posts at I HIGHLY recommend it. I check it out every day =)

Now, on to my songs...

01: YOUR FAVORITE SONG: SHOCKINGLY, not a Beatles song. My all time favorite song is 'Breakin' Me' by Jonny Lang (Who I get to see in concert next week!! YAY). I LOVE the song because the lyrics (included below) are beautiful and you can hear the emotion in his voice. Give it a listen here:

Every day I see your face I wish I'd stayed
Don't even know what made me run away
It's just the way I play the game

Emotional is not a word I'd use to explain myself
But now I'm down upon my knees
Baby please take me back

I don't want to be in love but you're makin' me
Let me up I've had enough. Girl you're breakin' me

Here I am just half a man standing alone
Feeling like I lost my only chance
At happiness when I let you go

I don't want to be alone thinkin' bout you girl
I got nothin' left to hold in this lonely world

The first time my heart was ever touched
Was the day I lost your love
I can feel it in my flesh and blood
My soul can only take it so much

So there it is. Why can't you give us one more try
You and I could find a way to live
If you let me in one more time

I know you lost your faith in me but I still believe
Can I make you understand, can I make you see
That I'm desperate for your love and it's breakin' me

02: YOUR LEAST FAVOURITE SONG: Leann Womack's 'I Hope You Dance' Long story as to why, but I HATE that song.

03: A SONG THAT MAKES YOU HAPPY: The Beatles "Good Day Sunshine'. These lyrics ALWAYS make me smile "I need to laugh, and when the sun is out/ I've got something I can laugh about/ I feel good, in a special way/ I'm in love and it's a sunny day"

04: A SONG THAT MAKES YOU SAD: 'Lucky' by Jason Mraz. Reminds me of a lost love... It used to make me cry, but thank goodness its not that bad anymore.

05: A SONG THAT REMINDS YOU OF SOMEONE: '45' by Shinedown (and about a million other songs) will ALWAYS remind me of Mr. Michael Miller.

06: A SONG THAT REMINDS OF YOU OF SOMEWHERE: Panic! at the Disco's "Nine in the Afternoon" reminds me of NGU.

07: A SONG THAT REMINDS YOU OF A CERTAIN EVENT: P!nk's "So What" reminds me of an amazing beach trip with my best girlfriends!

08: A SONG THAT YOU KNOW ALL THE WORDS TO: Vanilla Ice's "Ice Ice Baby". Sang it to my kids at work and they thought it was hilarious that I knew all the words!

09: A SONG THAT YOU CAN DANCE TO: I don't really dance, but in college we used to LOVE dancing to Usher's "Yeah" and Lil Jon's "Get Low" hahahhahaha

10: A SONG THAT MAKES YOU FALL ASLEEP I almost always listen to Will Hoge's "Baby Girl" before bed. I know not many people know him, but they should so listen to it here (and I was at this performance of Baby Girl on TRB. SO FUN!):

11: A SONG FROM YOUR FAVOURITE BAND: ummm any song by the Beatles. duh. (My favorite happens to be Something.)

12: A SONG FROM A BAND YOU HATE: anything and everything by Nickelback!

13: A SONG THAT IS A GUILTY PLEASURE: The biggest one EVER is Ricky Martin & Christian Aguilera "Nobody Wants to be Lonely." I LOVE that song for some reason, but I keep that info to myself normally.

14: A SONG THAT NO ONE WOULD EXPECT YOU TO LOVE: Breaking Benjamin "I Will Not Bow". LOVE that song. LOVE.

15: A SONG THAT DESCRIBES YOU: NeedToBreathe's "something Beautiful." The lyrics that follow are EXACTLY how I feel SO often! I absolutely LOVE these lyrics. They describe me and particularly my faith SO adequately!

Hey now, this is my desire
Consume me like a fire, 'cause I just want something beautiful
To touch me, I know that I'm in reach
'Cause I am down on my knees.
I'm waiting for something beautiful
Oh, something beautiful

And the water is rising quick
And for years I was scared of it
We can't be sure when it will subside
So I won't leave your side, no I can't leave your side.

16: A SONG THAT YOU USED TO LOVE BUT NOW HATE: Cee Lo 'Forget You' SOOO sick of that song!


18: A SONG THAT YOU WISH YOU HEARD ON THE RADIO: Anything by Marc Broussard. He's AMAZING. See below for proof!

19: A SONG FROM YOUR FAVORITE ALBUM: "Blackbird" from The Beatles' white album

20: A SONG THAT YOU LISTEN TO WHEN YOU’RE ANGRY: any hard rock... Shinedown, Rise Against, Avenged Sevenfold

21: A SONG THAT YOU LISTEN TO WHEN YOU’RE HAPPY: Boybands.... Nsync, BSB, Hanson, LFO. They all work!

22: A SONG THAT YOU LISTEN TO WHEN YOU’RE SAD: lately, this song by Hot Chelle Rae called "Bleed"... if you only watch one of these videos make it this one. I LOVE this song!

23: A SONG THAT YOU WANT TO PLAY AT YOUR WEDDING: The Beatles 'In My Life' and Hanson's 'I Will Come to You'... yes I did say Hanson. Show up to my wedding one day and you'll see that I'm totally not joking.


DAY 25: A SONG THAT MAKES YOU LAUGH: Bruno Mars' "Lazy Song" is SOOO funny!


DAY 27: A SONG THAT YOU WISH YOU COULD PLAY: anything would be nice.. but mostly a Beatles song!

DAY 28: A SONG THAT MAKES YOU FEEL GUILTY: I don't really have one.

29: A SONG FROM YOUR CHILDHOOD: New Kids on the Block "Hangin' Tough' is the first song I ever remember listening to

DAY 30: YOUR FAVORITE SONG AT THIS TIME LAST YEAR: I'm pretty sure I was diggin' Taio Cruz's "Dynamite" around this time last year.

Tuesday, March 29

Second Chances.

I'm sitting in my room. Just thinking. I'd REALLY appreciate some words of wisdom here.

What do you do when someone who hurts you wants a second chance?

Some people in my life are quick to say NO. Run the other way. Don't even think about it. Break all contact. I appreciate those people more than they know. Why? Because I know that they are saying those words out of genuine love and worry for me. I know that they worry for my emotional well being. I know they want the absolute best for me. I know they are trying to help me avoid getting hurt any further. I thank God for people in my life who love me so unconditionally. Such a blessing.

But... then I think about my relationship with God.

Matthew 6:14
"For if you forgive men when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you."

He's forgiven me every single time I've ever asked. He didn't have to think about it. He didn't consider. He didn't hesitate. He opened his arms and welcomed me back into his embrace. He didn't just forget about what I'd done, he restored my relationship with Him to what it was before I ruined things. And all of this in spite of the fact that I don't deserve it. Every wrong in our relationship was MY FAULT. Yet he chooses to forgive. He loves me with a limitless love. He also loves the people who wrong me with a limitless love.

All this just makes me think... who am I to refuse to extend that same forgiveness to others. I know that it might put me in a position to be hurt again. However, I also know that if I do hurt I have a God who is the ultimate comforter. I also know that I don't want to miss out on God's blessings because I was afraid of being hurt. Even so, I see my concerned friends point of view.

So, what do you think?

Sunday, March 27


This weekend at Elevation, Pastor Steven started a sermon series on the book of Ephesians. His first sermon was from the first chapter of Ephesians, and focused on the power of God working in our lives. I've also been reading Ephesians on my own, and recently focused some reading/study time on the same passage. Anyway, it was so good that I HAD to share a little of it with my wonderful, be it small, blog audience.

Pastor Steven pointed out something (as he regularly does) that I know, but I've never really devoted significant thought to. We already have all of the power of God in us. As verses 7-10 in the first chapter of Ephesians say: (and I'm quoting from The Message... a modern language translation of the Bible that I like to use in my personal reading time.)

"Because of the sacrifice of the Messiah, his blood poured out on the altar of the Cross, we're a free people—free of penalties and punishments chalked up by all our misdeeds. And not just barely free, either. Abundantly free! He thought of everything, provided for EVERYTHING WE COULD POSSIBLY NEED, letting us in on the plans he took such delight in making. He set it all out before us in Christ, a long-range plan in which everything would be brought together and summed up in him, everything in deepest heaven, everything on planet earth." (emphasis there was my own.)

God provided us with all the power that we need... the same power that raised Jesus from the DEAD for crying out loud (see verse 20) but we choose to live in weakness. And yes, I say WE because I fall into this category PLENTY of times. Pastor Steven likened this to potential and kinetic energy. I googled to get a little refreshed on that as physics wasn't my best subject in high school. The fact of the matter though, is that all that power, the power that raised Jesus from the dead and sat him at the right hand of God, is just potential in our lives until we make it WORK in our lives through trust, faith, ACTION. We got all the power we'll ever need the moment we became a Christian, but we waste it and forfeit God's blessing when we choose not to act.

Here's the part of this that really gets me... Paul points it out in verse 19. I worry SO much about my strength, what I'm capable of. But it has NOTHING to do with my ability. NOTHING. It all hinges on God's authority... which we know very well never changes, dwindles, struggles. NEVER. But somehow I still worry that I can't do it. Its my perception of power and strength thats the issue. His power never changes... my confidence in his power to be exerted though me... THATS what varies, and that's what causes me to miss out on things that He has for me.

I had a professor in college who used to tell us that "God doesn't call the equipped, He equips the called." Its sometimes hard for me to think this way, but when I refuse to, I'm underestimating God's power. If God can raise people from the dead, part seas, make the sun stand still in the sky, why in the world am I so arrogant to think that my issues are outside his realm of expertise? As I write that sentence, doubting sounds utterly ridiculous, and yet I find myself behaving that way more often than I care to admit. To express it a different way, as Pastor put it (after making a GREAT analogy about Apple products... which made this Mac lover smile) we use the equipment God gave us FAR beneath its potential.

After hearing about the sermon series coming up at Elevation I decided to devote my own Bible reading time to Ephesians for the next couple of weeks. Rarely do I spend so much time in one place in the Bible, so I thought it would be a nice change of pace. The thing that stood out to me initially... and then REALLY hit home after hearing Pastor's thoughts is the following...

In verses 15-19 Paul says (again quoting from The Message)
"That's why, when I heard of the solid trust you have in the Master Jesus and your outpouring of love to all the followers of Jesus, I couldn't stop thanking God for you—every time I prayed, I'd think of you and give thanks. But I do more than thank. I ask—ask the God of our Master, Jesus Christ, the God of glory—to make you intelligent and discerning in knowing him personally, your eyes focused and clear, so that you can see exactly what it is he is calling you to do, grasp the immensity of this glorious way of life he has for his followers, oh, the utter extravagance of his work in us who trust him—endless energy, boundless strength!"

Paul prayed for the believers that he cared for in such a beautiful way. When I read "intelligent and discerning in knowing him personally" I thought WOW, that, more than anything I could say, sums up EXACTLY what I'm looking for in my relationship with Christ. Thats just what I want. I can't think of anything better than gaining intimacy with the Father and gaining intelligence and discernment that will allow me to better love and serve those around me.

This week I'm working on tapping into God's power through my prayer, faithfulness, action. I'm praying Paul's prayer for myself... and I'm praying it for you too. I'm asking God "to make you intelligent and discerning in knowing him personally, your eyes focused and clear, so that you can see exactly what it is he is calling you to do..."

Saturday, March 26


I read a lot. I really like to read Christian nonfiction. One book that I go back to again and again is "My Utmost for His Highest" by Oswald Chambers. It is a years worth of devotionals that was published in the USA in 1935. I've read all of the entries multiple times. I pull it out when I need a little word from God, a little inspiration, a little encouragement. Anyway, today I flipped to one that I really like, and I wanted to share it... everything after are Chambers' words.

"Do not quench the Spirit —1 Thessalonians 5:19

The voice of the Spirit of God is as gentle as a summer breeze— so gentle that unless you are living in complete fellowship and oneness with God, you will never hear it. The sense of warning and restraint that the Spirit gives comes to us in the most amazingly gentle ways. And if you are not sensitive enough to detect His voice, you will quench it, and your spiritual life will be impaired. This sense of restraint will always come as a “still small voice” (1 Kings 19:12), so faint that no one except a saint of God will notice it.

Beware if in sharing your personal testimony you continually have to look back, saying, “Once, a number of years ago, I was saved.” If you have put your “hand to the plow” and are walking in the light, there is no “looking back”— the past is instilled into the present wonder of fellowship and oneness with God (Luke 9:62 ; also see 1 John 1:6-7). If you get out of the light, you become a sentimental Christian, and live only on your memories, and your testimony will have a hard metallic ring to it. Beware of trying to cover up your present refusal to “walk in the light” by recalling your past experiences when you did “walk in the light” (1 John 1:7). When-ever the Spirit gives you that sense of restraint, call a halt and make things right, or else you will go on quenching and grieving Him without even knowing it.

Suppose God brings you to a crisis and you almost endure it, but not completely. He will engineer the crisis again, but this time some of the intensity will be lost. You will have less discernment and more humiliation at having disobeyed. If you continue to grieve His Spirit, there will come a time when that crisis cannot be repeated, because you have totally quenched Him. But if you will go on through the crisis, your life will become a hymn of praise to God. Never become attached to anything that continues to hurt God. For you to be free of it, God must be allowed to hurt whatever it may be."

If you want to read more of these timeless, inspirational words, check out
Thanks for reading. xoxo

Friday, March 25

Fun Friday #3!

Ok, here's my fun post. Thanks to my roomie/BFF April for the little survey. Steal it, answer the questions, and comment here so I can go read yours! =)


A. Age: 25
B. Bed size: KING
C. Chore you dislike: CLEANING THE BATHTUB. GROSS.
E. Essential start to your day: COFFEE COFFEE COFFEEEEEE!
F. Favorite color: YELLOW
H. Height: 5'5'' ISH
I. Instruments you play(ed): I TOOK PIANO AS A KID
M. Mom’s name: VICKY
O. Overnight hospital stays: NOPE. (KNOCK ON WOOD)
R. Righty or lefty: LEFTY
T. Time you wake up: AROUND 6 USUALLY
V. Vegetables you don’t like: PEAS AND LIMA BEANS
X. X-rays you’ve had: HMM. I'VE HAD A CAT SCAN BUT THATS ALL.
Y. Yummy food you make: ANY BREAKFAST FOOD.
Z. Zoo animal favorites: POLAR BEARS AND ELEPHANTS!

Prayer and trust.

Its friday, which means I would normally be making a fun post. I think I'll get around to that in a few minutes, but first I just wanted to post something that I read the other day and have been thinking about since.

“One evening I left my office in New York, with a bitterly cold wind in my face. I had with me, (as I thought) my thick, warm muffler, but when I proceeded to button-up against the storm, I found that it was gone.

I turned back, looked along the streets, searched my office, but in vain. I realized, then, that I must have dropped it, and prayed God that I might find it; for such was the state of the weather, that it would be running a great risk to proceed without it. I looked, again, up and down the surrounding streets, but without success.

Suddenly, I saw a man on the opposite side of the road holding out something in his hand. I crossed over and asked him if that was my muffler? He handed it to me saying, ‘It was blown to me by the wind.’ He who rides upon the storm, had used the wind as a means of answering prayer.” — William Horst

I've been thinking over this a LOT. I've been praying over things a lot. A lot of my prayers have been answered. But with each answer comes something else to ask for. I got into grad school. Now time to pray about paying for it. School's payed for. Now time to pray about time for studying, passing tests, etc.

So what have I been learning lately? Prayer doesn't stand alone. Like in the little story above... God uses natural circumstances to supernaturally answer prayer. Prayer isn't an isolated duty or independent principle. It lives in association with other Christian duties, is wedded to other principles, is a partner with other graces. But to faith, prayer is indissolubly joined... to steal a line from Mr. Frank Sinatra, "They go together like a horse and carriage... can't have one without the other." Faith gives it color and tone, shapes its character, and secures its results.

So, my prayers don't seem to have the substance they normally do at times. The problem, I've come to realize... faith. Sometimes my faith feels flat, like its just not working... the problem there I'm beginning to see... prayer. For one to work, the other needs to be working too. This seems to be the biggest struggle in my walk with Christ at the moment.

Trust. It is faith become absolute, ratified, complete. There is, when all is said and done, a sort of risk in faith and its exercise. But trust is firm belief, its faith in full flower. And, to be honest, I (and I'm sure plenty of other believers) often times pray without really having that trust. Trust is a conscious act, a fact of which we are aware. It is a feeling of the soul that has to do with trust. How luminous, how distinct, how conscious, how powerful, and more than all, how Scriptural is such a trust!?! I'm beginning to think of this trust as an act of obedience to God. It really seems to be a way to worship him. Its one of the ways of worship that I struggle with most, but still... worship.

How different is this from many forms of modern belief that are so feeble, dry, and cold. So many beliefs bring no consciousness of their presence, no “Joy unspeakable and full of glory” results from their exercise. They are, for the most part, rules and regulations. There is no safe, sure trust in anything. The whole transaction takes place in the realm of maybe and perhaps and possibly. As Christians though, we don't HAVE to deal with that. And yet, sometimes we choose to anyway. So senseless.

Trust sees God doing things here and now. It rises to a lofty eminence, and looking into the invisible and the eternal, realizes that God has done things, and regards them as being already done... it recognizes that the battle has already been won. IT doesn't worry over things that God has already conquered. Trust brings eternity into the annals and happenings of time, changes the substance of hope into the reality of fruition, and changes promise into present possession. We know when we trust just as we know when we see, just as we are conscious of our sense of touch. Trust sees, receives, holds. Trust is its own witness.

Yet, quite often, our faith is too weak to obtain God’s greatest good, immediately; so it has to wait in loving, strong, prayerful, pressing obedience, until it grows in strength, and is able to bring down the eternal, into the realms of experience and time.

To this point, trust masses all its forces. Here it holds. And in the struggle, trust’s grasp becomes mightier, and grasps, for itself, all that God has done for it in His eternal wisdom and plenitude of grace.

In the matter of waiting in prayer, mightiest prayer, faith rises to its highest plane and becomes indeed the gift of God. It becomes the blessed disposition and expression of the soul which is secured by a constant intercourse with, and unwearied application to God. Jesus Christ clearly taught that faith was the condition on which prayer was answered. If I don't trust, then my prayer isn't going to be answered. When God had cursed the fig-tree, the disciples were much surprised that its withering had actually taken place. It was then that Jesus said to them, “Have faith in God.”

“For verily I say unto you, That whosoever shall say unto this mountain, Be thou removed and be thou cast into the sea, and shall not doubt in his heart, but shall believe that those things which he saith shall come to pass, he shall have whatsoever he saith. Therefore, I say unto you, What things soever ye desire, when ye pray, believe that ye receive them, and ye shall have them.”

Trust grows nowhere so readily and richly as in the presence of prayer. Its development is rapid and when a prayer life is well kept. When these engagements with God through prayer are hearty and full and free, trust flourishes exceedingly. The presence of God gives vigorous life to trust, just like presence of the sun make fruit and flower to grow... a cheesy, but nonetheless, true metaphor.

Ideas like “Have faith in God,” and “Trust in the Lord” form the keynote and foundation of prayer. Primarily, it is not trust in the Word of God, but trust in the Person of God. Trust in the Person of God, I've found, must precede trust in the Word of God. The trust which God points to as a condition of effective prayer, is not of the head but of the heart. It is trust which “doubteth not in his heart.” Such trust has the assurance that it shall be honored with large and satisfying answers. The strong promise of our Lord brings faith down to the present, and counts on a present answer.

Honestly, I'm still struggling to put all this into practice. I'm praying. I'm trusting. I'm exercising faith. I read a quote recently that I think is a great closing thought...

"When our wagon gets stuck in the mud,
God is much more likely to assist the man who gets out to push
than the man who merely raises his voice in prayer
—no matter how eloquent the oration."

I don't recall who said that... but In "Sun Stand Still" Pastor Steven shared the same sentiment, saying that we should push while we pray. Or, As one of my favorite authors Hunter S Thompson said... "Call on God, but row away from the rocks..." In addition to all that other stuff, we've got to act. (I discussed this in a previous post called Help... look back a few posts for that one.) And I'm finding that the acting... the stepping out in faith is what reinforces the trust. When I step out and push while I pray, God moves. Then I trust him a little more. Its an amazing (yet at times, terrifying) process.

Monday, March 21

Fun Friday #2!

Yes, I realize that its Monday.I intended to make a fun post on Friday, but we had friends in from out of town and LOTS of stuff going on. As such, I'm just now getting around to my 'fun' post. Anyway, what I really enjoy is when my readers steal my question or topic and answer them on their own blogs.... so copy, paste, and tell me whats going on in your world. You'll be hearing more from me about life this week (whenever I get over this bout of cold), but for now on to fun Friday... I mean Monday. =)

My fun about me post this week was inspired by my wonderful older sister Robin. Upon hearing that I was sickly, she encouraged me to feel better, noting that I couldn't possibly feel too bad when the love of my life, Mr. Justin Timberlake, was newly single. As such, I decided to devote my fun post to filling you in on my life long obsession...

In case you didn't know (though I'm not sure how you might have missed it) I think JT is the PERFECT guy. haha. Laugh, but I'm serious. Here's why.

1. N'sync. I was a DIEHARD fan. Justin and I grew up together. =)
2.He cracks me up on SNL. The Target skits, Omletteville, The Barry Gibb Talk Show, and of course:

3. He was the first guy Ashton Kutcher punked. He got a little teary eyed and called his mom on TV... and yet he was still a good sport. Gotta love a guy who loves his momma and can take a joke.
4. 6 grammys, 2 emmys, and a in a movie that got an oscar nod. Now thats talent.
5. He dated Britney Sears... and I LOVE her.
6. He's freakin hot... come on you KNEW that one was coming!

Exibit A (I was hesitant to use this picture, but DANG):

Exhibit B: (The glasses KILL me. So adorable.)

7. Have you seen this guy dance?! HELLO!

8. He's a southern boy. Gotta love that.
9. He has a freakin clothing line!! What woman could resist that?!
10. and OF COURSE, saved the best for last... the voice! Just take a listen to this...

So, who is your celebrity crush? Everyone has one, and I think it says a lot about a person. So, leave a comment and tell me yours! =)

Saturday, March 19

happiness and hurt.

This post will be short. Sometimes a poignant thought can be stated very succinctly.

Lately, I've noticed that sometimes, something that is a blessing to one person can hurt someone else. What do I mean? Example: If God blesses you with a child, and your best friend tries but can't conceive... well I'm sure your blessing would cause your friend some pain. It would just hurt to watch. Its not necessarily your fault. Its just a bad situation.

I don't know what to say about this except that I think when God blesses us, we ought to take the utmost care with that blessing. I'm not saying that we shouldn't be happy about what God provides. What I am saying is that a GOOD friend is aware of those around them. A good friend knows when someone is hurting, and guards against further hurt if possible. Certainly, that isn't always possible. But a little intuition and some sensitivity can go a long way. (That aforementioned friend, for example, would probably have a rough time attending a baby shower.) Acknowledging the situation is a compassionate way would likely make things better. And point blank.... your (or my) happiness is not more important than their hurt. God cares just as much about how the person who is lacking feels as He does about you enjoying his provision.

I think that God calls us to be compassionate. So, maybe your friend does all she can to be happy for you. Maybe you wish she'd be there more. Sometimes you just have to look past what you want and understand when someone is doing all that they possibly can.

I think that sometimes blessings come with responsibilities.... just a thought.

Wednesday, March 16


So. Its official. I got the letter in the mail today.


I am SO excited that I can hardly stand it. Plenty of people kept telling me that I would get in, but I honestly didn't think that I would. All I can say is that I feel incredibly blessed. God is so good. He truly answered my prayer. I'm so grateful to all of you who were praying and thinking positive thoughts for me.

I can't wait to get to work!

Tuesday, March 15

In The Market.

Hello everyone. First, a brief update:

I hope everyone's week is off to a good start. I have a sinus infection, so mine is moving kind of slowly. I laid around most of the day today. Hopefully, that rest started me on the road to getting better. My day off did give me time to FINALLY make a custom layout for my blog. I've been using generic layouts from blogger until now. It took me a while to get the hang of the html stuff, but by the end of my project I got pretty good at it. So, if anyone wants their own blog header let me know. I'll make you one, or show you how to make your own!

I'm looking forward to the rest of the week. Hopefully, I'll be getting better. I should hear about grad school this week (keep praying!) and April's bachelorette party is Friday night... which means I get to see all my girls! I got an apartment which I'll be moving into when my lease with April is up, and Saturday my mom and I are going to get some fabric to start on curtains for my new place! All in all, an exciting few days are coming up. Plus, its supposed to be 80 degrees Saturday!

Anyway, I've been a little slack with my blog lately, but I've been wanting to share some of the things that I've been thinking about lately.

A few weeks back, Pastor Steven spoke on the topic of honor at Elevation. He laid out a very easy to understand, practical method for increasing the amount of honor that we show to other people. The part of the series that really spoke to me was about honor being a lifestyle. He spoke about leading a lifestyle that you always do more than you have to. In my head I've started referring to this as the "and then some" mentality. I'm going to do what someone needs me to do "and then some."

Often times, I don't take advantage of opportunities because I simply don't notice them. This is the case with honor and with plenty of other things. Pastor Steven pointed out that we should be "in the market" for opportunities. For example, when I bought a yellow car I started noticing other yellow cars a LOT more. So, now I'm actively working to see opportunities to do positive things! The more and more I live for Jesus, the more I realize that its the little things that matter SO much. One little negative behavior starts a landslide that can take someone right back into the depths of their sinful nature. But on the other hand, one little positive, encouraging, honoring action can give someone the strength they need to keep going.

Just something to think about. =)

Friday, March 11

Fun Friday #1!

Happy Friday everyone. Sorry I've been MIA this week. I've been feeling pretty under the weather all week. I'm fairly certain its all allergies, so hopefully things will be clearing up soon. Anyway, if you read my blog, you know how strongly I believe in prayer. I'm on the verge of several big things in life, and I'd GREATLY appreciate if you'd pray with me about whats going on. I am waiting to hear if I was accepted to grad school at Winthrop. I applied for a new apartment, and I'm waiting to hear about that. It would be my very first apartment all alone. I really feel like I'm growing up, and I couldn't be more excited!

Anyway, I posted some random stuff about me a week or so ago, and it got a really good response. As, such, I decided that I'm going to post a "fun" post every Friday in addition to the more reflective, theological posts that I usually make during the week. I think it will be a great way to let readers into my life a little bit, and also to break up the important, but heavy topics I usually discuss. As usual, thoughts are always welcomed! =)

Today's fun post is a quiz. If you blog feel free to steal this so I can learn more about you!

1. When you looked at yourself in the mirror today, what was the first thing you thought? WOW. MY HAIR DOESN'T LOOK AS BAD AS I THOUGHT IT WOULD.

2. How much cash do you have in your wallet right now? A 20 AND A LOT OF PENNIES.

3. What’s a word that rhymes with DOOR? FLOOR.

4. Who is the 4th person on your missed call list on your cell phone? UNKNOWN NUMBER... HENCE ME NOT ANSWERING

5. What is your favorite ring tone on your phone? THE BEATLES, "HELP"



8. Name the brand of the shoes you’re currently wearing? NONE, BUT I WAS WEARING RAINBOWS EARLIER


10. What do you think about the person who took this survey before you? DONT KNOW HER.

11. What does your watch look like? DONT HAVE ONE. I JUST USE MY PHONE.

12. What were you doing at midnight last night? I WAS SLEEPING

13. What did your last text message you received on your cell say? LOVE YOU TOO!

14. What's a word that you say a lot? "I MEAN REALLY.." "CLEARLY.."

15. Who told you he/she loved you last? MY MOM =)

16. Last furry thing you touched? APRIL'S DOG.

17. Favourite age you have been so far? 25 IS PRETTY GOOD. LOOKS LIKE ITS GOING TO BE GETTING EVEN BETTER.

18. What was the last thing you said to someone? LOVE YOU!

19.The last song you listened to? THE BEATLES. "OB LA DI, OB LA DA"

20. Where did you live in 1987? WITH MY MOM AND DAD... I WAS 2.


22. Is anyone jealous of you? POSSIBLY.

23. Name three things that you have on you at all times? CHAPSTICK, IPOD, SUNGLASSES.

24. What’s your favourite town/city? I LOVE CHARLOTTE ACTUALLY. LOVE LIVING AROUND HERE.

25. When was the last time you wrote a letter to someone on paper and mailed it? ITS BEEN QUITE A WHILE.

26. Can you change the oil on a car? YEP. DRIVE IT RIGHT TO THE DEALERSHIP AND LET THEM HANDLE IT.

27. Your first love/big crush: what is the last thing you heard about him/her? WELL YESTERDAY I HEARD THAT JUSTIN TIMBERLAKE IS NOW SINGLE LOL

28. Does anything hurt on your body right now? HEADACHE. DANG ALLERGIES!

29.What is your current desktop picture? THE BEATLES.

30. Have you been burnt by love? OH YES.

Sunday, March 6


This is another one of those posts that spawned from something thats been floating around in my head. I won't go into the details of the situation, as the specifics are irrelevant to the idea that I'm thinking about.

Anyway, do you ever hear quotes, phrases, ideas about God that aren't from the Bible? I do from time to time, and I wonder how applicable they are. I certainly believe that new wisdom about God surfaces all the time. Truth can be found outside the Bible itself. At the same time, we have to be discerning about who and what we listen to.

Some examples I've had on my mind as of late:

"God helps those who help themselves." - Benjamin Franklin

"Call on God, but row away from the rocks." - Hunter S Thompson

In fact "God helps those who help themselves" is probably the most often quoted phrase that is not found in the Bible. This saying is usually attributed to Ben Franklin. Whatever the original source of this saying, the Bible teaches the opposite. God helps the helpless! Isaiah 25:4 says, "For You have been a defense for the helpless, a defense for the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shade from the heat..." Romans 5:6 tells us, "For while we were still helpless, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly."

In terms of salvation, we are all utterly helpless. We are all infected by sin (Romans 3:23), and condemned as a result of that sin (Romans 6:23). Nothing we can do on our own can remedy this situation (Isaiah 64:6). Thankfully, God is the helper of the helpless. While we were still sinners, Jesus died for us (Romans 5:8). Jesus paid the penalty that we were incapable of paying (2 Corinthians 5:21). God provided the "help" that we need because we could not help ourselves.

I know all of this, and I TOTALLY believe it to be true. HOWEVER...

Apart from salvation, I think there is a way that the concept "God helps those who help themselves" is correct. I'm pretty sure its a smart move to "call on God, but row away from the rocks." For example, if you were to ask me to help you make dinner and then sat and watched as I did all the work, then I'm not really HELPING you. I would be doing the work for you. To help implies two bodies working along side each other.

Many of us as Christians fall into the trap of inactivity. We ask God for help, but then expect God to do everything Himself. We excuse this by pointing to the fact that God will provide according to His will and in His timing. I DEFINITELY think that God provides in the manner that he sees fit. However, this is no reason for inactivity.

As a specific example, if you are in need of a job, ask the Lord to help you find a job - but then be active in actually looking for a job. While it is in His power to do so, it is highly unlikely that God will cause employers to come looking for you.

A friend once told me not to try and catch the right fish, but to worry about becoming the right bait. God will help you, but you've got to put in work too. Similarly, a few weeks back Pastor Steven spoke of praying for rain in a drought from the following passage of Scripture:

And he said, “This is what the LORD says: Make this valley full of ditches. For this is what the LORD says: You will see neither wind nor rain, yet this valley will be filled with water, and you, your cattle and your other animals will drink. - 2 Kings 3:16-17

The armies of Judah and Israel were out in the middle of the desert with no water and they were getting scared. They were on their way to Moab but now they were concerned that they were not even going to make it to the battle. They talked to Elisha the prophet and this was the word passed to them from God through Elisha. Obediently, they dug the trenches and one morning they looked and saw water coming from Edom and filling up their trenches. They had plenty of water to drink. If you ask me, this speaks directly to the idea that Ben Franklin came up with... God helped the armies of Judah, but they helped themselves too... Here's how.

1.Go to God: Note what they did with their problem – they went down to a prophet of God, Elisha, to find out what God was going to do in this situation. I think that was definitely the correct decision. If you’re facing a giant of a problem, remember that God is the biggest giant of them all.

2. Prepare for the blessing: Now the prophet told them to do something strange; he told them to dig a bunch of ditches in the middle of the desert. This might seem like a pointless exercise to you and it might have seen pointless to them, too….but they did it. They were obedient to God and dug the ditches. They had to believe that God was going to give them the blessing and they had to put in some hard work to prepare for it.

Just something I've been thinking about... I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Thursday, March 3


I really like it when I get feedback on my blog. Two things that I hear a lot about my blog are as follows: One. I don't have enough pictures. Two. I don't really much about myself in my blog other than what I'm learning about Jesus at the moment. Well, there really isn't a reason for those things, other than the fact that its just not my style. I just write about whatever is going on in my head... and as you can see, I pretty much think along the same lines all the time. Anyway, to appease some curious readers, I came up with a list of a few interesting facts about me. These are some things that I think might provide some background and maybe make some of my blogs a little more understandable. I posted some of these on facebook a LONG way back, but they still apply. Oh, and as for the pictures... maybe I'll get around to that one day... but I doubt it.

1. I am absolutely obsessed with The Beatles. It's a lot worse than I let on, but I don't want people to make fun of me. I also LOVE Elvis Presley, Marilyn Monroe, James Dean, Audrey Hepburn, Clark Gable. Old hollywood makes me smile. I'm an old soul I suppose.

2. I consider myself a Christian, but sometimes I don't really know what that means. I KNOW that all the stuff I was taught in church as a kid isn't the right stuff. I know that God uses me, speaks to me, and relates to me completely different than he does anyone else. At any rate, I am really enjoying figuring it all out....especially at Elevation :)

3. I think about 3/4 of my daily calorie intake is from beverages. Nothing beats a great latte or a coke!

4. I'm going to write and publish a novel... seriously. Don't make fun or you won't get an autographed copy. Its going to be amazing!

5. I'd sit and listen to ANY thoughtful light rock boys (John Mayer, Jon Mclaughlin, Mat Wertz, Jack Johnson, Jason Mraz, Tyrone Wells... or throw it back to classics like Elton John, Rod Stewart, Hall & Oates etc) all day long if I could. Nothing makes me feel better than a great singer/songwriter. This seems to annoy some of my friends.

6. I used to make fun of April b/c she was OBSESSED with her Macbook. I got one. I no longer make fun. You can't understand unless you have one. It's like a way of life. I <3 my mac.

7. I walk around in public listening to my iPod. Its not because I'm antisocial... I just like having a soundtrack. I spend a lot of the morning at work thinking of what I want to listen to during my lunch break. A good playlist revitalizes me enough to make it through the afternoon.

8. If I could spend $1000 at Macy's or Barnes and Noble, I'd totally go with the books over the high heels. I totally don't care that that makes me a geek. Oh, and kindles are stupid if you ask me. I love the feel of the pages in my fingers.

9. Half the time I think I want to become a respected psychiatrist and make lots of important discoveries about mental health, and the other half I just want to get married and bake and clean house. I don't know which would make me happier.... Hopefully I'll end up doing a little of both.

10. I have the most comfortable bed in the whole world and I attribute it to my lack of motivation in the morning. Plus I LOATHE getting up early. After a year and a half on first shift I'm still not adjusted at all.

11. I'm a lefty, and I REALLY hope that my kids are too!

12. I seriously have the coolest siblings in the entire world. I wish I was half as good looking, funny, smart, charming, selfless, creative, motivated (and I can keep going) as any one of them.

13. I have a college degree. Before I got one I thought that it was the most important thing in the world, and definitely a key to happiness in later life. I'm glad I finished school, but I know I was wrong. The stuff that changed me in college wasn't the stuff from the classroom.

14. I have four girlfriends who I really think are my soulmates. I LOVE THEM.

15. I am friends with some of the greatest guys in the world. How all these boys ended up in Rock Hill and being friends is beyond me. I don't see them as much as I used to, but I still love the heck out them!

16. One day I am really self-conscious and the next day I am totally overconfident and I have NO IDEA why. Its weird. I can't decide if I am totally strange or really awesome.

17. I miss college more than I thought I would. Sometimes its the college lifestyle, but more often than not, its just the learning experience. It feels good to expand your brain. I can't wait for grad school.

18. I've not eaten meat for a long while now. I can't believe I'm actually doing the vegetarian thing. It was a goal of mine for a long time and I'm SO proud that I actually did it!

19. Its pretty dorky, but I write in a journal. ALL THE TIME. I don't think I'd be able to sleep at night if I didn't write my thoughts down regularly. I take notes during sermons, write down song lyrics and quotes I hear, write my thoughts all in the same book. Its actually really fun to look back and see where I've been.

20. I am terrible about getting addicted to TV shows. My latest? Paul McDonald from American Idol. I don't really like the show, but he is such a good singer that I HAVE to watch and cheer him on!

21. I want to meet Justin Timberlake, but I know if I ever did I'd probably die. I've been in love with him since I was 14. Part of me seriously thinks that we'd hit it off and become real friends... although I really want to be his wife. If you know me, you know I'm TOALLY serious about that.

22. I have rarely buy new clothes. The main reason is that I get attached to old stuff and I don't want to wear something new. My favorite items? Super worn in 7 jeans. Ramones tshirt. pink converse. red hobo bag from the Gap. Plaid scarf. =)

23. I looooove living in the south and I know I could never make it up north. Cold weather is just NOT for me. I absolutely HATE it.

24. I'm really emotional. Stuff like Applebees commercials and episodes of Full House make me teary eyed. I have no clue why.

25. I want a tattoo soooooooo bad. Its drawn out and everything. I just need someone to go with me. I'm too chicken to do it alone!

Ok, now you know a little more about the girl behind all these posts. So, tell me something about YOU!

Wednesday, March 2


Fact: Life is hard.

So is math... well for me at least. English was always my strong point. Hence blogs and not algorithms.
Even so, I want to throw out a math analogy.

Life is difficult. Math is difficult (for me at least).
But both have answers.

When math got hard for me in school I got someone who was really good at it (most often my REALLY smart friend/math teacher Kelly) to help me. When life is hard, I try remember that the Creator of all life is always there to help figure out the answer.

Don't you sometimes say that life is tough? I know I do... ore often than I care to admit. Honestly though, its not really complaining, and its more than a phrase. It’s a truth. Life is hard... a LOT of the time. things don't go the way they are supposed to. Plans fail. Plans change. People let you down. You know it. I know it... and guess what? God knows it. He even TELLS us.

“I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.” - John 16:33

Well, if you're inquisitive, curious, or just downright nosey like me, that verse leads your mind straight to another question. WHY? Why is life so hard? (I know I ask this... and am asked this by my patients at work on a daily basis.) The answer? One word. SIN.

Life is only difficult because of sin. Don't believe that? Let's take a look back. Before sin, life was perfect. Seriously, it was. Go back and check out chapter 2 of Genesis. PERFECTION. Then, sin enters the world in chapter 3 of Genesis and literally all hell breaks loose.

Look at the first command from Jesus.
We are told to love God with all our heart, mind and soul.
In reality, that’s simple, it’s just not easy. (A distinction that we sometimes fail to see.)

Why is it so difficult? Well, it all comes down to one thing. SIN. Because of sin, we put ourselves before God. Because of sin, we love ourselves more than God. Because of the sin that we allow and even, at times, seek out in our lives... and because of sin in the lives of those around us.

But, let’s suppose for a moment that we actually did live out this commandment and that life was just this simple. Let’s assume that we did our best to love God first and foremost. THEN everything would be easy, right? Easy, no. Simple, yes.

What about that second commandment: loving our self and our neighbor?

This is really just a math equation. Basically, this commandment is 1 + 1 = 3

Three? Yep... three. (And no, this isn't my struggle with mathematics rearing its ugly head again.) Let me quote Jesus…”follow me”. I'm going somewhere with this. Promise.

You see, when Christ gives us that second command to love self and neighbor, He is assuming that you are already following that first command to love God first and totally. Because if you don’t love God first, than your love of self is selfish. If God is first, your love of self honors Him as His creation and those things you don’t “like” about yourself or are not proud of about yourself are put in proper perspective.

And, if you don’t love God first, than that whole “love your neighbor” thing won’t work either…without God you’ll only love those who love you, not those who it is difficult to love. (See my post called honor for some enlightening thoughts on loving the unlovable.) Anyway, if you only love when you receive love, you're giving a counterfeit love. Its not sincere. I mean if we need God to help us love Him and ourselves, OF COURSE we need him to help us love OTHER people.

No, if you (or I) want our love to be sincere, the answer is simple…it’s just not easy. Before you try to love yourself or others, you have to love God (and let Him love you back).

And that’s the beginning and end of our math lesson…1 + 1 = 3.
If you love God and have Him number “1” in your life, and then you join your love to His (another “1”) the effects of your love will spread to another person (#3).

Still can’t wrap your head around that math? That’s because love is a decision, but not only a movement of the head. Its a sacrificial reality of the heart. Don’t think about the equation; pray about it. The same goes for scripture. Don’t just read Scripture…pray it. Live it. There's a BIG difference there. Before you know it, 1 + 1 = 3 will make more sense to you than the worldly, logical notion of 1 + 1 =2.

My prayer, and one of my biggest desires for my life is that such finite love will die at some point. Only the infinite love of God is forever. Its so simple... but so far from easy. Even so, THATS what I'm really after.

Tuesday, March 1


I've posted this on facebook before, but I thought it warranted a second posting... Its just really thought provoking.

I am part of a lost generation
and I refuse to believe that
I can change the world
I realize this may be a shock but
“Happiness comes from Jesus.”
is a lie, and
“Money will make me happy.”
So in 30 years I will tell my children
they are not the most important thing in my life
My employer will know that
I have my priorities straight because
is more important than
I tell you this
Once upon a time
Families stayed together
but this will not be true in my era
This is a quick fix society
Experts tell me
30 years from now, I will be celebrating the 10th anniversary of my divorce
I do not concede that
I will live in a country of my own making
In the future
Environmental destruction will be the norm
No longer can it be said that
My peers and I care about this earth
It will be evident that
My generation is apathetic and lethargic
It is foolish to presume that
There is hope.

And all of this will come true unless we choose to reverse it .

Read the message, then read it again in reverse.

Which generation do you belong in?