Archive for May, 2010

May 29, 2010

Amistad

“I decided, very early on, just to accept life unconditionally; I never expected it to do anything special for me, yet I seemed to accomplish far more than I had ever hoped. Most of the time it just happened to me without my ever seeking it.” – Audrey Hepburn

I never planned on beginning or ending the friendships that I had or have. But all of them have shaped the person that I am today, they have expanded the vision of my dreams and hold pieces of my heart that will never be returned.

If I date this back to when I was in Elementary School, I remember 3 friends in specific. Ariel, Kelsey and Courtney. These three were my absolute best – they were there for me when my parents got a divorce and I felt so misunderstood, they were there for me when we all had little boy crushes and would pass around a notebook and write notes to each other. I remember visiting Ariel’s home, she lived in a wooden house on Ft Myers Beach and that haven was absolute bliss in my eyes. The floors would creak early in the morning when the sun would wake you up through the pure white linen curtains. We were all so different. Ariel was tall and blonde, all the boys liked her and she had a charming personality. Kelsey was short and perky, her smile was infectious and she was always in a good mood. Courtney was tiny, so tiny that I remember just how small her hands were. I cherished those three most in my childhood, and I can remember and feel their hugs now. They have all grown up to be such different women – yet all so powerful in their personalities and full of live and laughter. I’d give all that I could to see these three and all be in the same room together to see where life has led us all.

As years went on, I could write about every single friend that I had. I remember them all so vividly. Pamela Jane Rawson is my longest and most consistent friend. I have stayed close to her even now, and we could never grow tired of each other. She has the most loving soul that anyone could have. She weeps at beautiful life moments, she laughs hysterically at things that others would just chuckle at. Pamela is a faithful friend, she’d climb a mountain for you and she’d sacrifice for you to give you what you need in order to be close to her. I never want to lose her as a friend, I only want my friendship with her to grow deeper. I want my children to call her Auntie Pamela, and cry if I tell them they can’t go visit her one summer. I want them to be attached to her and beg me to have her and her children come visit us.

I’m writing all of my introspective thoughts on my relationships with all of my best friends, past and present because each and every one of them have given me deeper insight to who I am today. They have helped form me into who I live to be in present time, unknowingly showing me God in all of their actions and affectionate words.

My perfect world would be for everyone to live in the same town, be together all of the time and continue creating memories together. But if that were the case, then life wouldn’t be fun. I would be stealing everything that life is to be. We were meant to travel, take different paths, meet new people and experience life in all of it’s forms. I thank Our Creator for birthing the desires and dreams that all of these women have. I pray that He would use them all, to reach the deepest darkest places that are flooded with hopeless and broken people and that they would be restored – and be able to see how amazing their lives can be, because they made a connection with these beautiful souls that so deeply touched mine.

I love you all, and miss you terribly.

May 19, 2010

Concord

As many of you may or may not know, I am in Concord, North Carolina for the entire summer. I am an intern at Concord First Assembly under the Youth Pastor, Jon Hernandez. So far, so good.

I will be blogging about my experiences as an intern to keep you all informed and to document what I’ve been through.

Day 1 was normal – the general breakdown of what was to come this summer. Pastor Jon wants me to be involved in a research project he is doing, which is focusing on satellite campuses and how we can bring 3sixty5 (the youth program) to these sights. I will also be learning administrative tasks with his assistant Terri, whom I have come to enjoy very much. I will also have the opportunity to sit in several staff meetings, creative meetings and one-on-one meeting with Jon to learn the in’s and out’s of being in full-time ministry.

The host family I am staying with is absolutely incredible. They have welcomed me into their home, making my stay there very comfortable. They are Christine, Ray and Eric, who is their 11 year old son who has a fixation with silly bands. They also have a puppy named Doc, who is so fun and calms the part of me that wants a dog so badly. Nonetheless, they are loving people that I am happy to get to stay with. They have accommodated me with the very best and I couldn’t have asked for more.

Day 2 was good but honestly, I found myself wrestling with emotional stress. I’m in a different place. A place where I have never been before with so many people I don’t know very well at all. I can’t further explain all that I was feeling but I had a conversation with Will about it all and I felt better afterwards.

Day 3 has been better than them all. Tonight will be my first time at 3sixty5 and I am so pumped about it. Things are working out great here, I’d only change the look of my cubicle but that will come in time. I’ll have to go buy a vase and put fresh flowers in here often and put up pictures of my family and friends who I miss daily.

Sorry this was so short and it’s purpose was only to quickly inform you all of what I’ve been up to recently since I got here. I’ll post more, I’m getting a hang of everything right now.

I love you all, and would ask that you just keep me in your prayers 🙂

May 5, 2010

Beautiful chaos

(I have had the most views today than I have ever had on this blog, so I figured I’d give you all something new to read since you’re already here anyway …)

I’m engaged. Wait…what? This is insane. My head is spinning right now because of all that I have to do. Will left yesterday back to Charlotte and I’m left in Lakeland with all the hype of what is going on. Honestly, all I want to do right now is be able to see Will, be done with my finals and focus on this wedding. But right now, I can’t. I have to focus on my final that I have in 2 hours, I have to focus on packing my entire room up for home and I have just one more final left on friday. This brings me to a place where I find myself thinking “I want to be done. Forget it all, I’ve checked out weeks ago.” I’m a little anxious, and even a little worried.

In the beautiful chaos that is going on around me I am still finding time to spend with my Creator. With the first Love of my life, with the One who is making all of this happen. It would be so easy for me to focus in on myself, Will and our future together. But I cannot allow for that to be the center of my life…ever. The center of my life is Jesus Christ, and all that he is. Fortunately enough that includes Will, and I will never have to live without him. We will be doing this entire thing together, our lives will become one and it cannot come soon enough.

We are mesmerized by the effortless, it’s easier to play on our iphone’s for a half hour than it is to sit in a silent room and pray. But I promise that the more time you spend in prayer, disciplining yourself, it becomes very natural. You will gravitate towards spending time alone, than filling your space with noise. And not only that, but you gain more confidence that God is with you in every situation. He knew I would be engaged on May 3rd of 2010. He also knew that I would want to focus on solely that right away but he also knew that that wouldn’t be possible. So I feel a grace as I sit here and type this out to you. I am reminded of all those around us who are so willing to help us in whatever way they can, to make this easier for us and we didn’t even ask them. Every possible detail we could have missed hasn’t been because of the positive concern that others have for us.

I say all this to encourage you that while your life may be going 1,000 miles an hour, God doesn’t leave your side. He is still right by you, pushing through everything along the way. The God that we serve is more amazing than we could ever truly fathom. Entrusting everything into his hands is the sure way of getting through life happy. It’s the only way to get through happy, and you just aren’t happy but you have a deep rooted joy. A joy that you are never alone, a joy that makes this life worth living.

And for that I am thankful, thankful that He has given me my wildest dreams and will continue to do so throughout the rest of life. The joy instilled in me is overwhelming at times and it is like nothing else in this world. I love Him, and this love I have grows daily. Through experiences like the one I am going through, I love him all the more because He is taking care of so much.

“Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.” John 14:27