We live in a world of sin and imperfection. I am a child of God striving each day to live out my calling. Welcome to my blog where you get the inside scoop of this Youth Pastor's world!
"Don't let anyone look down on you because you are young, but set an example for the believers in speech, in life, in love, in faith, and in purity." - 1 Timothy 4:12

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Why Are You a Christian?

Our sermon series for the Lenten season is all about who Jesus is. Today we talked a lot about the scripture where Jesus asks His disciples who they say He is. Most of the time something during sermons gets me writing and today I decided I might as well share it on my blog. Pastor G was talking about creating personal faith statements, something that you can use to answer that question that often gets asked, Why are you a Christian? She said that in seminary one of her professors encouraged them to rewrite this faith statement every couple years, because as we grow, study, experience life, and learn our faith statements change. I have written theologies of ministry but I'm not sure I have ever sat down and written out my own faith statement or creed, so today in the middle of the sermon I did.

These are my raw thoughts, I haven't edited it much, I'm sure I will over time:

Why are you a Christian?

I believe in love, a deeper kind of love than romance.
Love that is everlasting, unconditional, and limitless.
This love is found on the cross.
Agape love comes from the Father of the Universe, the creator of everything.
Agape love comes from the Son of the Father, the living word, 
the promised one, who died for the sin of the world,
He rose again filling the gap between humanity and divinity.
Agape comes today through the Holy Spirit that guides and directs our lives.
Agape comes now flowing from the Father to the Son through the Spirit into this broken world.
I believe in Agape Love, therefore, I am a Christian.


Well there it is, for now!

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Youth Group Lock In & Middle School Fun Day

Last weekend with my best friend I hosted a High School Lock In over Friday and Saturday and a 7th-8th grade fun day on Monday. It was a lot of fun.

High School Lock In:
 We got to together and ate, there was pizza and a lot of food. The kids wanted to play hide and seek as they normally do, they played three or four different versions throughout the night. There was a dance off with one of the kid's Xbox (I'm wishing now that I had gotten some pictures of their hilarious dancing). We played some games, there were different competitions throughout the night. There were fun Minute to Win Its and this fun game. We also did a painting craft, it was a rendition of this. We also watched Forrest Gump.

7th & 8th Grade Fun Day:
 I suppose I could just say it was an 8th grade fun day. I didn't have any 7th graders there. We started with breakfast and then they wanted to play hide and seek as well. For some reason teenagers really like playing hide and seek in the dark. I really dislike the game, lol. We played the Oreo minute to win it game as well. We played Scattergories and then we had lunch. After lunch we went to a hotel here in town and went swimming. When we came back we cleaned up and watched She's the Man.

Over all it was a fun weekend with some of my kids and they were able to have just a fun filled time when they were out of school.

Here is a video that I made after!

video

Friday, February 22, 2013

Still Alice

Buy the book here at Amazon!

My second book for 2013 was Still Alice by Lisa Genova. This was yet again a book I probably wouldn't have picked up but turned out to be very good. I read the entire book on my phone, it was a different way to read but I really enjoyed having my book with me at all times and not having to carry anything extra with me. 

This book is about a Harvard Psychology Professor who specializes in Linguistic studies that finds out she has Early Onset Alzheimer's. The rest of the book is very detailed in Alice's struggles with learning how to live as he mind slowly, not all that slowly, stops working. It starts when she forgets words in lectures that she has given multiple times and then she goes for a run and gets lost in Harvard Square. It progresses from there and she struggles trying to keep her coveted position at Harvard and figuring out who she is when she is no longer an author and professor. The title comes from her learning that no matter what she is Still Alice.

Alzheimers is something that everyone knows about but unless you have lived with someone who has it then it is a disease that is hard to understand. I highly recommend reading this book, it gives a whole new light to to what these people have to deal with along with what their families have to deal with. 

Saturday, February 2, 2013

A Smack in the Face Kind of Day: Time to Count My Blessings

So today was one of those days where I wished that I had a boyfriend, friends that live in Newton, or still lived close to my family. All of the fun-ness started yesterday.

The last couple days I when I started my car it kind of made a er er sound as it started, but each time it started and ran just fine, but in the back of my head I was like that kind of sound like the battery. Yesterday, was Friday and I realized I was looking at my first free weekend to spend in the area with no real plans. I decided to go to Newton after work and find something to do with my Friday night. I decided to get my nails done, something I never do but sounded like fun. After I got my nails done I got into my car and it wouldn't start. It took three times before it started. I got it running and called my father. When something breaks or doesn't work on my car I always second guess myself and need to make sure I know what I'm talking about before I go somewhere and sound like an idiot. I told my dad what it was doing and he also said it sounded like the battery. I drove to AutoZone and went in to see if the guy that was working could test my battery. He cleaned off the corrosion on the battery terminals and tested my battery. It said that it was still a good battery and had 50% charge. He put the charger on it, and it started up just fine. So with his recommendation I decided to see if I really could get 3-6 more months out of the battery. After talking to my father again, I decided to drive back to Hesston and end my night out. Dad said that the drive home should finish charging the battery back up. We were hoping that the only problem was the corroded battery terminals.

I made it home safely and everything was fine. This morning when I got up and decided to head to Wichita to meet up with some friends. I went out and my car started just fine so I drove back to Newton to get gas at the Kwik Shop. I filled up my car and when I got back in it wouldn't start. I was praying it was like the night before and that it would start the next time. No such luck. So I called my dad again, because this is my go to reaction in times like these. I decided to ask someone at the gas station to help me jump my car, which by the way is something very humbling to have to do. Reminder here, I am 23 but I look like I am 16 and without meaning to easily play the dumb girl card when it comes to cars. I first asked the guy next to me if he would be willing to jump my car, he seemed safe, his wife was in the car. He said no, I didn't know people did that. I was thrown off and didn't know how to ask someone else, I was humiliated. I asked the guy behind him if he would be willing to jump my car, he asked if I had jumper cables and then said that he would as soon as he was done filling up his car. He pulled his truck up and attached the cables. There wasn't even an er er sound anymore, just that horrible click, that rings out DEAD! We tried a few times and nothing. So he said, "I'm a really nice guy, so I will drive you to AutoZone to get the new battery." I believed he was a nice guy but my mind started screaming at the same time, so I called my dad again, this time really trying not to freak out. while on the phone with my father I tried to get my car into neutral but was struggling, then it started. So the guy said he would follow me to AutoZone to make sure I didn't break down on the way there. The whole way there I stayed on the phone with my parents. My mind was very fragile at this point and I was doing all I could to not completely break down. I mean I had to act like an adult when I got to AutoZone I couldn't be my father's fragile little girl when I got there. I pulled into AutoZone and the guy pulled in behind me and said that he had said a prayer that a new battery would fix my car problems, and then my angel drove away and went back to whatever he had planned for his Saturday.

I went inside and bought a new battery, the nice guy in there took out my old battery, he made fun of the guy that was working last night and his cleaning ability on the battery terminals) he also made sure that my alternator was charging like it was supposed to and all checked out well. I got in my car and heard that beautiful sound of my car starting. I was able to go on to Wichita and enjoy my afternoon with my friends. Of course I cried the whole way there as everything sank in and just how blessed and thankful I am. I had fun with my friends but what I really wanted to do was drive back to that safety net that sometimes I miss so much and curl up in my parents arms.

It is odd how quickly that loneliness can sink in after feeling completely stranded and having to utilize what is available. I got home from Wichita and decided to enjoy what was left of the beautiful day with a walk/run around town, trying to get my body to relax and remember that I really am ok. I got home feeling a little better and all I could hear was my neighbors upstairs having dinner with their entire family. There was a lot of laughter and running around going on upstairs. I sat down and it started to sink in just how much I wanted to go home. This happens every now and then but usually I find something to do and those feelings go away. I got on my computer and saw all of the pictures of my young cousins that my parents babysat all week and that was not helping. About the time that I couldn't handle it anymore, I was ready to curl up in my bed and call my mommy for some support. There was a knock on my door. My neighbor from upstairs was at my door with a plate of food. They just wanted me to have some dinner. I said thank you and smiled and he went back to his family. I shut the door and lost it. How did they know how alone I felt in that very moment?

I spend so much time trying to be an adult and to get people to respect me as the 23 year old that I am and today I wanted nothing more to go home and be a kid and let my father fix all of my problems. It will never cease to amaze me how much we depend on our cars and how much our lives are thrown out of whack when they don't work correctly. Today was just a little reminder that we can't take our blessings in this life for granted, because they are not always going to be there. Lord, thank you for providing me with angels in my life that help me every day. Sometimes, they come in the form of random people at the gas station, neighbors, students, songs on the radio, and many more ways that I'm sure I don't even know. I'm sorry for all of the times I take these blessings for granted and for all of those times that I can't look up from my simple world and see all of those people that are in need. Please help me keep my eyes open for when someone is struggling like I was today. I want to be the good Samaritan not the man who tells that young girl no and drives away. Amen!