10. 21. 12. 04:30 am ♥ 6

Healing

It’s crazy how deeply someone can get hurt. It’s kind of amazing how it can get so deep that it becomes forgotten and unnoticeable. It’s like a splinter that gets half-stuck under your skin. You pull out the half that’s sticking out, but the rest of the splinter snapped and remains under your skin. It’s still there, but it’s unnoticed. It still bugs you and causes you irritation, but you don’t think you need to do anything about it. And after a certain amount of time, you think that it’s just gone away. But the reality is that maybe it’s still there. Maybe it’s still causing you pain, but you don’t even realize it.

I think this is something that I’ve realized this past week and a half or so. In the past, I was hurt deeply. So deeply that I didn’t even realize that a part of it was still lurking in the deepest depths in my heart. I’ve been able to get over so many layers of those hurts and pains over the years, and it’s become something that I’m always willing to share with others in the hopes that it would encourage them. It’s become something that strengthens my own faith in the Lord. But I hadn’t realized until this past week that the root of the thorn was still nestled deep within the crevices of my soul. I hadn’t realized that a little shard from a previously shattered heart still remained out of place. 

But praise God that He is a God of power. Praise God that He is an almighty God who leaves nothing to chance. Praise God that He could still use hurts from years ago to teach me something new about Him today. Praise God that He can meet someone so sweetly in a single day and bring so much healing to something so deeply rooted. Praise God that His love truly truly never fails. Praise God that He always walks with me through all things. Praise God that He was walking with me through something that I hadn’t even realized I was walking through. 

All consuming fire,

You’re our hearts desire.

Living flame of live,

Come baptize us.

Let us fall more in love with you.

09. 11. 12. 01:41 am ♥ 4
At the all-important pivot of human history, the worst sin ever committed served to show the greatest glory of Christ and obtain the sin-conquering gift of God’s grace. God did not just overcome evil at the cross. He made evil serve the overcoming of evil. He made evil commit suicide in doing its worst evil.
John Piper, Spectacular Sins
08. 29. 12. 12:49 am ♥ 9

This is It

Feeling some pre-school year jitters for some reason. This hasn’t happened since I was in elementary school…way back when the first day of school was so important. Back in the day when my mom helped me to lay out my clothes all nicely the night before and I would wear that entirely new outfit with my backpack over one shoulder because that was cool back then.

Now looking forward to tomorrow, it’s a different kind of jitters. Everything’s really just starting to hit me. This is it. This is the last year that I’ll get to spend with a lot of the people around me. This is it. It’s time that a lot of big future decisions need to at least be thought about. This is it. Leading a small group for the second year in a row. I hope I know what I’m doing this time. This is it. I feel like I’ve only barely scratched the surface of following Christ and now it’s time to set aside my own desires and my own wants. It’s time to set my gaze entirely on His Kingdom. Man, this is it. I don’t know if I’m ready. Just praying that I’ll be able to run and not lose heart. Thank the Lord that He runs with me.

08. 23. 12. 02:16 am

With one word my soul is relieved
With one word the devil will flee
With one word my hurricane winds will cease
Through one word the world came to be
Through one word the world is redeemed
Through one word: the name of Jesus


With every word in this song my heart rejoices…great is our God!

(Source: Spotify)

08. 07. 12. 03:53 pm ♥ 3

Lunch

Had a “thank-you” lunch with the office today at Rio’s Brazilian Cafe since it’s my last week here this week. During it, I sincerely just wished I hadn’t had to take classes this summer and could have worked different hours, because I would have absolutely loved having lunch with my co-workers and mentors on a regular basis. We sat down today and ordered. Orders were taking a long time, but the company and conversation was great. A lot of it actually centered around what we all wanted to do in the future. I was a little surprised because I figured most of them would just be working at LIVESTRONG for at least the forseeable future. As it was, it turned out to be a good thing because one of my mentors remembered me mentioning to her about my desire to do missions in the future. So I brought up the few plans that I have right now and mentioned Urbana. I was surprised because multiple people had actually heard of it and they were excited to hear about it again. Then I just started sharing some of my doubts and my uncertainty about everything and everyone just started sharing about their own experiences. It was crazy!

It’s always kind of confusing because I can never tell who’s a Christian and who isn’t at my workplace because everybody has a passion for trying to do something with a purpose and making a difference. Many of the people there started talking about their own volunteer and missions experiences. Collectively as a group, they’ve been to so many different places: Mexico, Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Argentina, Italy, places in Africa, etc. One of them was actually telling me all about how she got connected with a missions agency and committed a year to serving with them and the ways that it changed her life.

It makes me wish I had the opportunity to work different hours this summer because if I had a choice, I would have pounced on the chance to be at the office for lunch and eat regularly with the people here. Everyone has such awesome stories of how they got here and the things that they care about. Even just today was so encouraging for me to hear about how everyone at this office seems to strive for more purpose than just a salary in their work. Right now, I think the one thing that I’m most frightened of is forgetting the call that I have heard. I don’t ever want to forget or stray from the path that God has set before me, and it’s at times like that when I realize how truly narrow the way to life really is. And again, in the midst of my doubts, and in the middle of a big mouthful of food, one of my mentors said to another one, “Yeah, missions! Can’t you just see him doing that? It just fits perfectly!”

Thanks, God, for giving me even that small bit of affirmation in a random comment. It’s still my last week, but I’m already starting to miss the people here. Funny what some lunch plans can do!

09. 26. 12. 12:32 am ♥ 3

Providence

When you think about it, it’s so funny how friendships start. To be quite honest, I can’t remember how I met most of my closest friends. It always starts as something that seems so insignificant, something so random and accidental, but now would be treasured as something to be framed forever and carefully locked away.

I think it’s like this in everyone’s stories about their walks of faith too. There’s always that one person that they met. “I was struggling, doing this or that…and then I met this person.” Maybe it was that classmate, or maybe it was that friend through a friend. Maybe it was a stranger you literally bumped into, or maybe it was the neighbor you had never known. But whoever it was, it starts as some random, forgotten interaction, but that relationship grows into something that we become convinced of as God’s providence. I definitely have one of those in my story of how I came to Christ. For me, it was a friend through a friend. He became my closest friend at home, and even though distance has caused us to grow apart a little bit, he’s for sure one of my groomsmen at my wedding. I truly believe that was God’s providence in my own life.

There have been plenty of others, too. The only real friend that I have left from my middle school days, the one I met in college that’s now graduated, the drop-out, and so many more. When I think about it, I know that this was God’s providence because of the things that I have heard from God through them as well as the light of God that I have seen within them. These were the things that made my own faith bigger and stirred my own heart for knowing God so much more intimately.

I wonder how I would feel if I were able to go back in time to the actual moments of when I met these amazing individuals that have helped to shape who I am now. Most definitely, I would try to capture that moment forever in my heart. Even if it were a bad first impression or some kind of awkward moment, I would treasure it forever. I would probably even be super excited and try to tell myself in the past about the awesome friend that I was about to make. But I guess that would also take away from the journey. Either way, I thank God for the people He’s placed in my life because I definitely would not be anywhere near who I am today without their influence and their impact. Isn’t it so true that when we see God’s faithfulness in someone else’s life, it becomes so much easier to relax and trust Him with our own? God is good.

09. 03. 12. 01:46 am ♥ 4

After my father passed away in 2006, we went through his things. He was always so full of life and his belongings spoke of his adventures…In my dad’s things, I came upon mysteries that made me smile…Then, buried in the stack, we found a citation issued in 1945, when my father was in the army. The citation for “heroic achievement” came from the commanding general of the 75th Infantry Division.

On April 11, 1945, my father’s infantry company was attacked by German forces, and in the early stages of battle, heavy artillery fire led to eight casualties. According to the citation: “With complete disregard for his own safety, Private Pausch leaped from a covered position and commenced treating the wounded men while shells continued to fall in the immediate vicinity. So successfully did this soldier administer medical attention that all the wounded were evacuated successfully.”

In recognition of this, my dad, then twenty-two years old, was issued the Bronze Star for valor.
In the fifty years my parents were married, in the thousands of conversations my dad had with me, it had just never come up. And so there I was, weeks after his death, getting another lesson from him about the meaning of sacrifice - and about the power of humility.

Randy Pausch, The Last Lecture
08. 24. 12. 08:00 pm ♥ 14

About That Time

Don’t really know why I’m posting about something like this, but hopefully it won’t be too awkward. Okay, it’s already awkward. Whatever. Back in the day, my parents were sticklers about dating.

"Roy, do you have a girlfriend?"

"No."

"Good, you’re still in high school. You don’t need to be dating now, just focus on your school and you’ll find someone nice later."

"But Mooom, there’s actually this really pretty girl…" (Just kidding. I would never say it like that.)

"No! Trust me, when you’re my age, you’ll understand that I’m right."

Anyways, I could keep going on with what that fairly typical conversation used to be like, but it was basically just my parents telling me that I shouldn’t be dating. It even got to the point where my mom tried to say it to me sternly in English for dramatic effect. Except that when it came out, she ended up saying, “No dating until you’re married!” Haha, what does that even mean??

I guess it’s about that time that different conversations start happening though. When I went home last winter break and this summer break, my parents started out the conversations the same way, but they took a completely different turn.

"Roy, do you have a girlfriend?"

"No."

"You know it’s okay for you to get one now, right? We won’t be mad."

And having that conversation just makes me sigh. For one, because it tells me that I’ve started to reach the point where my parents (and apparently all my extended family) will start worrying about me. But for another more important reason, it makes me sigh because of what God’s done in me. You see, I’m definitely an approval junkie. Thinking about relationships don’t really help with that. But God’s been real good about convicting me and reminding me over and over that it’s about Him and not anyone else. He’s been real good about showing me personally that He’s the only one who can really bring me complete joy. That my heart just naturally keeps getting distracted and longs for a wife tells me that maybe I haven’t been ready for something like that anyways. But…you know…who can be completely ready for a relationship anyways? I shouldn’t have to worry about that! Yeah!

Nah, I could tell myself that, but there’s also the other thing that God’s been real good of convicting me about, which is my future calling. God’s brought me to a place where I feel like I know what He’s calling me to, and that I’m just anticipating finding out how or where or when. But the fact of the matter is, I’ve heard that call. And with it being about time for me to move on past college to the next step of what God brings, it forces me to admit that there can’t really be anything that happens. It just wouldn’t be smart. 

In the end though, I realize that the most important reason why I sigh is because of my own character. Most guys I know talk of being able to find that godly woman to run with them towards Christ and to serve together and build one another up and all that awesome stuff. And it’s not that there aren’t any women like that out there, props to the ladies, but it’s that I don’t deserve someone like that. I am a sinful person. A prideful person. A hot-tempered person. A lazy person. And much else haha. But the point is that with all that I am, and all that I am lacking, there’s no way I could win over on my own such a godly woman as the rest of us guys dream about. That’s why it just has to be about that time that God’s set aside. It can only be with His permission that I could find something like that. After all, He’s the one who has brought such immense changes in my life since He’s revealed Himself to me. By His grace alone, I’ve become a completely different person from just 4 years ago when I accepted Christ. And I trust that He is still continuously changing me and molding me, bringing me to that point of completion. And it has to be this way, because I am weak and helpless without Him. That’s why it’ll have to be about His time, and not my own. Although, it would be nice if His time could be just a little bit more like my time.

08. 17. 12. 12:34 am ♥ 6

Always a First

I had dinner tonight with my aunt and uncle. We’ve eaten together plenty of times, but tonight was the first time that my parents weren’t there with us. My parents were both busy so it was just me, my sister, my aunt, uncle, and cousin. It was actually a little awkward at first because usually my parents are able to carry the conversation with my aunt and uncle better. But then the conversation took a turn for the better.

My aunt, uncle, and cousin are the only other Christians in our family. I don’t know why I didn’t realize it before dinner, but tonight was also the first time that all the Christians in our family were gathered together in one place where we could freely talk about our faith. To be honest, even talking about faith with them was kind of awkward too. It was the first time that I’ve ever really had a deep talk with them about anything at all too.

But through dinner tonight, it was really cool to be able to talk to family members about our beliefs. To even have the same beliefs was already incredible for me. A lot of nights I wonder in my last moments before falling asleep what it would be like to have a family with the same faith as me and my sister. I wonder what it would be like to be able to pray with them and talk to them more knowingly about what I do in my fellowship at school. I wonder what it would be like to be able to ask them questions that I have and tell them about my doubts and concerns for what my future is in accordance with God’s call. I wonder what it would be like to talk to them about everything spiritual, and to have support from them. To have prayer from them. I guess tonight was a little sneak peek of what that could look like.

Even though tonight’s dinner was a little weird and a little awkward, it was also a little awesome. It gave me a lot of hope for my family. I felt reinvigorated coming out of it and I can only pray again and again that I wouldn’t lose sight of how and why God has placed me in this exact position with my family. Like they say, there’s always a first for everything, and I pray that there will one day be a first conversation with my family like I always hope for before slipping away into sleep.

08. 06. 12. 08:05 pm ♥ 4225
nbaoffseason:

wheeeeeee…whee, whee, wheeeeee

nbaoffseason:

wheeeeeee…whee, whee, wheeeeee

(Source: theagonyofdefeat)

via nbaoffseason