October 04, 2013

Full Circle

I am amazed that it has been 9 months since my last blog post! I'm not amazed because it's been that long, but because I thought it has been much longer than that! Either way, I'm still here and God continues to work in my life, even if it's in very mysterious and confusing ways. To be honest, I haven't read any of my recent posts (I don't like reading what I wrote, haha!), so I am not quite sure what I even updated. But anyway, here goes the recent stuff. Regarding school, I completed my Certificate in Biblical Studies at Trinity and transferred my credits over to Northwestern Theological Seminary, where I am now pursuing my Bachelor of Theology in Biblical Studies (an online, four-year degree in addition to my General Associates). I am not sure what I want to even do with the degree, but my main purpose is to have at least my Bachelor's degree (and why not have Biblical education in the process?). Regarding ministry, I have been praying to God about what He wants me to do and where He wants me to go. It's been tough since my life seems to have hit a standstill (part-time job, school, and church involvement) with little direction of where to go next. But amazingly, God has opened the door for me to lead and teach the youth group with a friend of mine, Erin, at my church on Wednesday nights! It's quite funny how God can bring certain things full circle after some number of years have passed. If you've read any of my previous posts, you would know that a few years back I wanted to go into full-time youth ministry, but then I backed out of my B.A. in Youth Ministry program because I felt it wasn't for me (looking back now, I see I had unrealistic expectations and was immature). Now, three years later, here I am teaching and connecting with youth on a weekly basis and it has been a wonderful blessing! Ministry hasn't been anything I thought it would be (again, unrealistic expectations), but it has so far been a great joy to me and I thank God that I get to be used my Him to bring His Word to youth! I still don't know what God is doing yet, but I do see things beginning to unfold, one by one, moment by moment. He is so good and faithful! :)

January 08, 2013

The Right Foundation

   A new year is here, ever too quickly if you ask me! It's great, though, to start off fresh again and see what God has in store! As always, God is continuing to work in my life and He humbles me by His greatness each day. I finished my certificate in Biblical Studies and I am now taking a minimum of one year off of school. During this time, I plan on just stepping back and growing in the Lord. I desire for my prayer life to expand, Bible-reading to get deeper, and meditation and memorization to get deeper. I want to have an eternal perspective every day and I want to rid myself of worldly entertainment, values, and thought processes. I'm making God the foundation in my life and then building on top of that.

   Also during this time, I want to pray to God for His guidance and leading as I follow Him in His plan for me. Regarding education and academics, I'm not certain where to go with that. I don't want to waste time, efforts, and money on school without a vision. I want to be in full-time ministry, I just don't know where. It's frustrating to know, but not know at the same time. Oswald Chambers talks about working for the Lord and what that should look like. He says it's not about working for God as it is being loyal to Him and allowing  Him to work through you. That perspective really opened my eyes about ministry. So right now, I'm not trying to find ways to work for Him, but instead growing in my walk with Him and letting Him work through me. Let me just say, He has opened opportunities to minister to people (saved and unsaved) because of this. It helps me to greatly rely on His strength and provision instead of my own.

   I get tired of wanting and desiring to be dedicated in my walk with the Lord without actually doing anything about it. I want my faith to really change my life and my actions. I and others have seen this happen recently, so I desire to pursue that and keep it up, still growing in and relying on the Lord Himself. The moment I take my walk into my own hands (power and strength) is to abandon my total dependence on God.

   Right now I'm memorizing Psalm 63:1-8. I'm memorizing and meditating on a verse a day and then putting them together as a whole. I'm making this passage my prayer and cry to God every morning. After all, He should and must be everything to believers! As for me, I'm making Him my everything!

"O God, You are my God; I shall seek You earnestly; my soul thirsts for You, my flesh yearns for You, in a dry and weary land where there is no water. Thus I have seen You in the sanctuary, to see Your power and Your glory. Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, my lips will praise You. So I will bless You as long as I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name. My soul is satisfied as with marrow and fatness, and my mouth offers praises with joyful lips. When I remember You on my bed, I meditate on You in the night watches, for You have been my help, and in the shadow of Your wings I sing for joy. My soul clings to You; Your right hand upholds me." Psalm 63:1-8