"The World is a book, and those who do not travel read only a page." -- St. Augustine

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Roomies = Laughter, Love, Friendship

As I reflect on these past two weeks, I am SO BLESSED. I have three of the most amazing roommates a girl could ask for. ONE... we all go to sleep at around the same time. If one is still studying, she's respectful of the rest falling asleep. This is a good thing. I DO NOT function well on little sleep so it's a blessing not having a roommate who is incredibly loud walking in at 3 AM. TWO... my roommates and I have the funniest conversations at the most random times. We got into a theological discussion the other night about the Old Testament at like 11:30. It was so funny. We all ended up in fits of laughter. Tonight, Christina and I were talking about our love for Jane Austen and how much we love her books, the movies, and of course who could forget James McAvoy in Becoming Jane. :) And then we started getting goofy.... strange things come out of my mouth when I'm tired and with good friends.

Tomorrow morning I have a doctor appointment for my ankle. Jess, my trainer, isn't happy with how it hasn't been getting better. So hopefully we'll get this figured out and I can play ASAP. I miss playing. I haven't played soccer in over a week so I'm ready to start again. All in all, I love Crown College. I love everything about this school. I love the people. I love the profs. I love my friends. :) God has truly blessed me not only with my roommates but also with my team.

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

The College Experience.... Begins

Well, hello all from Crown College in the itty bitty town of St. Bonifacius, MN. It's 10:43 at night as I begin typing this. Two of my roommates are in the room but soon to be leaving to finish a movie. My third roommate is off celebrating a four month anniversary with her boyfriend.... so I probably won't see her til tomorrow morning. These past few weeks have FLOWN by. It seems like ages ago that I was in Wyoming with Jake and Sydney. It seems like forever ago that I got to spend a night in Minneapolis with my girls, learning a little more swing. It seems like a while ago that soccer training camp started. It seems like just yesterday that classes started. I'm already a week into my classes. I'm loving the challenge of college - Critical Thinking is by far the greatest and most stressful challenge. Dr. Ratledge (my prof for Critical Thinking... an honors class) is a brilliant man... almost to the level of Doc from Summit.... buuuuttt not quite.

I must say.... it was amazing getting to campus and seeing a few familiar faces and by the time training camp was over having a few amazing friends already! By the time all the freshmen came, my roommate Jenna (who was also in pre-season sports training) and I felt like pros. Neither of us got to do welcome weekend stuff but frankly I'm kinda glad. We really felt like it wasn't for us. We had been there almost a week alredy and had learned the ropes.... by ourselves. It was kind of amusing watching some of the freshmen wander around like lost puppies with very dazed and confused looks on their faces. I am proud to admit I have NOT taken the wrong staircase up to the freshman guys wing in Main yet which is VERY easy to do if you aren't paying attention.

I am currently taking the following classes:

Consumer Math on Mondays..... 8 AM
- This class is death by math every Monday morning ridiculously early. Too early to be doing math in my opinion.
Mission in Perspective on Monday, Wednesday and Fridays.... 1 PM
- This is my personal favorite. I LOVE this class. It makes me excited for what God has in store for me!! I love my prof as well.
Critical Thinking on Tuesday and Thursday.... 8 AM
- Yet another class which is death by brain overuse far too early in the morning. If you walk by E113 during this class period, there probably is smoke coming out from under the door from all the brain activity within the room.
Psychology on Tuesday and Thursday.... 10:50 AM
- My prof for this class is CRRRRRAAAAAZZZYYY. But really.. crazy cool. She's amazing. Retired missionary who turned prof. Fabulous insights. Easy to remember and fun to learn with.
New Testament History on Tuesday and Thursday.... 1 PM
- Pretty fun class actually. An easy 'A' but still fun.

Soccer has been challenging. VERY challenging. I had monster punishment for not making the times for the fitness testing which was slightly frustrating as I busted my butt all summer prepping for these tests. BUT I made it through training camp week which was full of two physical practices a day and one class time at night. It was WET and humid but thankfully not too hot. Near the tail end of the week, my ankle started to bother me. Kind of a dull ache. Nothing I was too concerned about - I figured I had just twisted it wrong or something. WRONG. What I thought was nothing has now turned into something painful and annoying. Something that has not allowed me to play in one single game yet. A tendon in my foot I didn't even know existed has flared up.... very painful and sore. I can't run on it. I ice it every night. It still isn't getting better. I know I need to be patient but it's so hard. Be praying for me.

Well.... it's after 11 and I've been doing well on getting to bed at a decent time every night. My roommates are all back so I'm thinking it's time for me to hit the sack as well. G'night all from Minnesota.

BTW..... www.crown.edu

Sunday, August 9, 2009


As I sat tonight flipping through my best friend's photos from her recent mission trip to Ukraine, I suddenly realized how much I truly missed Russia. How much I missed culture. How much I missed outreach. How much I missed the life God has called me to. I honestly started to cry as I was simply reflecting and wishing I could have been over there with her.... ministering, loving on, and interacting with the Europeans yet again. In a conversation I had tonight with a friend, I said simply that Europe has always had a special place in my heart. When talking about missions and where to go, people often mention China or the Middle East... because they assume since Christianity began on European soil that Europe is completely Christian. This presupposition is incredibly false... while yes, Christianity did begin in Europe..... Europe today is VERY post-modern and VERY post-Christian. Agnosticism and Atheism rates are incredibly high as people search out for the truth or simply live with the truth there is no God. This thought breaks my heart.

In 2007, I went to Russia with a broken heart and as my youth pastor told me, "If you go somewhere with a broken heart, more likely than not you'll come back with no heart at all." He was completely true. I gave away every piece of my heart to the young girls that stole it from day one there. Missions is my call and I am excited to pursue it full-time.

Thank you Liz.... for bringing back memories. And thank you to those of you who encourage me to continue to chase after my dreams. I am forever indebted to you.

Monday, July 27, 2009

Passion and Purity - A Reflection

Passion and Purity. A simple statement that says so much. A simple phrase which shows what many of our relationships lack. Recently in history, our relationships with guys and girls have been lackluster at best. Sure, they've supposedly been passion-filled but not purity-filled. Purity. What an ancient term as some would say. An archaic word at best. Heaven forbid someone walk through high school and college without spending the night with a boyfriend or girlfriend. Purity - be it emotional, physical, or mental - has gone by the wayside. It is no wonder our high school hallways are filled with expectant teen mothers and fathers who could care less.

Both guys and girls could share the blame. I find it difficult at best looking at society today. Girls dress seductively.... practically begging to be taken home. To the guys who read this, I apologize. Sadly, many Christian women do not see what the big deal is showing a little skin here and there. Guys prowl the halls... hoping for the chance to conquer yet another girl. Girls with little or no relationship history are the big pulls.... however, many remain unmoved while some do succumb. Perhaps it's because these girls have been holding out for a hero. A knight in shining armor. A superhero coming in to rescue them. Often, high school girls (and guys) find themselves wondering if they are worth anything outside of a dating relationship.

I found myself in a little bit of both categories. I tried holding out for my hero... but I gave my heart away to way to four too many boys. While I never physically succumb, my heart was ripped to shreds by my senior year. As I sat at work today, I started reading a book a friend had given me after a very difficult few weeks. "Passion and Purity" by Elisabeth Elliot. This book challenged and stretched me as I sat and read it. It challenged me to think about who I was holding out for. God has the most incredible guy on the face of the earth planned for ME.... a broken mess. I find it so hard to believe at times that He chooses to call me His daughter because I fall time and time again. Each time, He picks me up, dusts the dirt off, and helps me carry on. I challenge the girls and guys who may stumble upon this blog and read it, to find "Passion and Purity" on a local bookshelf and read it for yourself. It's definitely worth it.

Monday, July 6, 2009


You know... it's funny. Sometimes things happen and you feel as if you are on the top of the world and within a few hours, something else happens and you are crushed. Completely destroyed. That high you had a few hours ago is totally gone. You sit.... wallowing in the pain and frustration. You wish it would all go away. You feel broken, cracked, bruised, and shattered. Every moment of excitement is now tarnished with an ugly crack that threatens to allow everything inside to spill out. Tears threaten to fall. Anger seethes underneath a composure that's barely held.

And all at once..... you feel broken. Completely destroyed. Every emotion is now in a mangled heap. But somewhere from the distance comes a voice...... that calls you. That comforts. That heals. A man comes and lifts you out of the pit. That lifts you out of the pain you wallow in. But he asks before he pulls you out. You must be willing and wanting him to pull you out. He is a healer.... and he takes you in his arms and carries you to where he can look at your wounds and bandage them. They burn as he cleans them. The malice, frustration, and anger burn as he gently rubs them away. For a while, you resist, wanting nothing but to let the pain fester. However, it hurts less after you finally let him repair the damage done. And after all is said and done, he asks that you cling to him as he carries you home. He asks you not look for someone else to carry you but that you allow him to carry you home. His eyes of love see your brokenness and he promises to not let you stumble again.

"Broken" - Lifehouse
"The broken clock is a comfort.
It helps me sleep tonight
Maybe it can stop tomorrow
From stealing all my time.
I am here still waiting
Though I still have my doubts.
I am damaged at best
Like you've already figured out.

I'm falling apart
I'm barely breathing
With a broken heart
That's still beating.
In the pain
There is healing.
In your name
I find meaning.
So I'm holding on. I'm holding on. I'm holding on.
Barely holding on to You."

Wednesday, July 1, 2009

Heat and Humidity

Well, as usual, the SD summers bring lots of heat and lots of humidity. I shouldn't complain I suppose. It hasn't been over 100 a day yet this summer and we are now onto July. Which brings me to something else, Crown Soccer starts in less than a two months. I've been training like crazy, following the running program from my coach. As a freshman who hasn't played in a year, I'm a little scared to death. Yesterday, I started sprint work. BAH. Not my idea of a good time. This running program is another reason why I shouldn't complain about the hot days. Last time I did a training program, I baked in the sweltering heat.

This weekend is going to be busy. With a concert in town that I have to help out with, I'm going to definitely be busy. I'm pretty excited for this weekend. Lots to do. =) I'm trying to save up some money for college this fall. Because of some incredible scholarships as I stated before, I have my entire first year paid for! So the money is mostly going toward paying for books and other assorted fees that come with being a college student. I suddenly realized I will be moving away for an entire year. No basketball games watching the boys I grew up with. No study halls goofing off with my best friends. No cheering on my younger brothers playing soccer. It's going to be so different. But I'm ready. I've been ready for a while.

Well, I probably should go take a run. I'm training and I need to stick with it.

Until later.....

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

True Love Waits... A Letter From God

My Child,
This ring you wear--I hope it's not just a symbol but a commitment to purity for me. And for your husband or wife. I want you to look at your ring... don't look at the color or the size but look at it. Many of them say "True Love Waits" but do you really know what that means? I want you to look at each word, break it down, and think about the meaning.

True. I am the definition of truth. I am the way, the TRUTH, and the life. True is derived from truth. Thus, I want you to know that the man or woman I have planned for you falls in my truth. He or she will be very real and it will be true. Your relationship may have started many years ago or just recently. But it is a true and very real relationship. One built on friendship, trust, and most importantly ME.

Love. This world has so many wrong definitions of love. Many think it's based of what you do or what you say or the things you get and give. I wish you would understand that the definition of love is ME. I sacrificed My only Son to die for you. That is what true love is. You will never understand love until you know me intimately. Until then, love is just another word that we throw around as if it was nothing. Love is sacrifice. Love cannot be bought, sold or paid for. I am love.

Waits. In this day and age, people believe in instant gratification. It's written on advertisements and sold in stores. Wait. Stop. Take a breath. I have a special person planned just for you. You may have several people come into your life and they will come and GO. But you must wait on Me. I have a specific plan for your life. I love you so much. I want you to WAIT on My timing. Don't rush it. Do not awaken love before it's time. I want you to wait on Me. I am preparing you both and will bring you together when the time comes.

True Love Waits. Such a simple phrase with a deep meaning. I want you to think of this when you look at your ring. Even if your ring doesn't say "True Love Waits," you wearing it automatically means that you have promised and committed yourself to that idea. Wait for Me, My child. Rush nothing. I love you.

Your Heavenly Father,

The Dreamer

As a little girl, she dreamed of the day she would meet him
A tall, dark and handsome boy appeared in her head
And other days, a knight in shining armor would appear.
As she grew, the vision changed and morphed into something dim
The boys she knew harassed her and she wondered if she would ever wed
If the boys were all like that, unfeeling, uncaring, insincere.

One summer afternoon, she met him by chance
His smile caught her eye and she found herself dreaming once again.
Thoughts flooded her mind, but the tears and fears lurked close behind.
They became friends quickly and in the moonlight, the two would dance.
And they would watch the stars until her curfew at a quarter past ten.
As the two grew, the dreams in her head, she no longer could bind.

Several years later, the two sat on the same porch staring at the same stars
His love had captured her, and as the years faded, so did her hearts fears and scars.

About the Title

It is the end of June. Wow. This summer has flown by so far. I can't believe the journey I've taken in the past few weeks and months. Six months ago I had no idea where I was going to school.... I was stuck at a deadlock between CCU and Crown. Three months ago I had no idea how I was going to pay for school.... $26,000 a year is a lot of money. A month ago, I just graduated. WOW. I can't believe it has only been a month since I walked through the doors of MCS as a senior for the last time and walking out as an alumni. Through all the ups and downs of these past few weeks though, the Lord has been faithful. SO faithful.

The reason for the title of this blog "The Ultimate Faith Journey" is because life simply is the ultimate faith journey. We can say we have faith but to live it out is a whole different ballgame. When our mind screams one thing, but inside, God whispers ever so quietly something else. It's a humbling experience. In the next few weeks I hope to blog about my adventures here at home as well as at Crown. I know the Lord is going to be opening some doors and providing opportunities for growth and change.

As I look to the future, my favorite quote strikes an even beat in my head and in my heart:

"Be the change you wish to see in the world." - Ghandi