Monday, December 12, 2011

In Summary... first semester of college was fantastic and I have incredibly mixed feelings about going home. You know how when you over-mix two colors of paint, you almost always get a grayish-brown sort of color? Yay for memories of childhood fingerpainting disasters. Anyway, I have no idea where that analogy was going. Moving on.
Basically, I can sum up these past four months in two words: crisis averted. That was sort of my catchphrase. So many things could have gone wrong but didn't, or did go wrong but had little to no negative impact on anything. God is gracious.
I've struggled, I've stayed up too late, I've procrastinated, I've made mistakes. I've made friends, I've gone on crazy, memorable adventures, I've laughed till I cried, I've learned about reconciliation. I've grown and changed and learned a number of new, useful things - like how to splint my broken drying rack and make cookie dough without leaving my room. I've learned to go without a lot of the things that were commonplace at home and I've embraced countless opportunities that I never had in California. I've experienced fathomless joy and heartache, happiness and sorrow, gain and loss.
Through it all, I know that God has been at work in my life and in the lives of those I've grown close to. I prayed that He would teach me to rely on Him during this extended period of time away from home, and He has. He is the same God here as He is in California and He has never left me nor forsaken me, nor will He ever do so in the future.
I'll miss the woods and the ponds and the stars, because it's when I'm standing under the pitch-black night sky, staring at the diamond-bright reflection of the stars in the glass-smooth surface of Gull Pond, that I feel most reassured. When I'm there I cannot doubt that God exists and He has good plans for me that will bring glory to Him. There I know that He is in control, that He sees the bigger, perfect picture even though circumstances seem hopeless from my perspective. But those truths aren't contained to the Gordon woods, and it's this knowledge that I'll seek to carry with me on my trip home.
I'm so incredibly blessed, to be going to college in Massachusetts and to belong in two places now. I can't wait to see my family and friends and crazy monster puppy again. I'll be home for Christmas; you can count on me!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The Late-Night Musings of a Sleep-Deprived College Student

[first edition.]

"Mercy triumphs over judgment."

Four words with so much meaning. A lifetime of consideration and evaluation compressed into 8 syllables.
Those who judge will be judged; those who are merciful will be shown mercy. How often do I live in the light of this truth? I'd rather believe myself above condemnation, labeling others as I see fit and never stopping to think that in judging them, I am judging myself.
It's human nature to judge people at face value. It's kingdom nature to love and accept them without question. Jesus preached a radical message when He said "love your enemies" and He lived His everyday life according to this command - to such an extreme that He called sinners, the enemies of His perfect holiness, His friends! He knows the deepest, darkest sins and thoughts anyone has ever had. He is intimately acquainted with the depravity of humanity. He sees the depths of our hearts, and He not only loves us unconditionally, He gave Himself up to be crucified by the very people He came to save.
In order to forgive our debt, He had to pay it Himself. And He did, willingly, painfully. What kind of love is this? He didn't just show mercy to the most undeserving of criminals, He took the judgment we deserve on HIMSELF. He was punished, we go free.
Who am I, then, to judge anyone? I, who am equally guilty of death. A sinner in the company of sinners. How dare I think that I have the right to label, write off, or condemn anyone? How dare I think even for a second that I am more deserving of God's love and people's praise, that I got to where I am today by some greatness of my own?
I am nothing but for the grace of God. It is He who formed me, knew me before I was, saved me out of the darkness I didn't know I was in. He called me and worked in my heart so that I would be able to respond. I am here because He knows what is best for me far better than I do.
My pride must be crucified on His cross. He died so that I might be liberated from the burden of my sin; why do I insist on clinging to it so tightly? In Him there is grace and mercy and the fullness of life. In sin there is only misery, condemnation, estrangement from Him and those I love. I pray that I might live in a place where I understand my great and constant need for Him, for His mercy and forgiveness. I want to learn to extend that same grace and mercy to others, for I deserve it no more than they.
And may the good news of the gospel and the grace and freedom it brings be my only theme, all the days of my life.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

I am here.

And here is a very good place to be. It is a place of wonder, awe, and new experiences. Here is where adventures happen and learning takes place. Here is so vastly different from everything I've known before that sometimes I have to remind myself that this is real, this is now, this is happening.
Here is a contradiction of a place. While there is great joy, there is pain here too. Here is the reality that wherever I am, from this point on, here will never contain all the people I love, all the places I want to be in. Here is lonely sometimes, but I know I am never alone.
Here can be stressful, but here is rewarding. There are new friendships and new interests to be pursued here. Here is often sleep-deprived, because there is often too much excitement taking place to miss out on. Here is full of inspiration and overthinking and time spent running in the woods or praying by the pond.
Lately, here is cold. Right now it's raining; later tonight it will probably snow. Today here entailed sleeping in, watching a soccer game, scorekeeping for a volleyball game, seeing a play with a friend. Here is busy, here is full of life. Here is participating and planning and remembering. Here is wistful and wanting, yet satisfied and full to bursting.
Here is not the easiest place to be, but I love it all the time. Here is blessed and here is good. Here is not perfect, but here is love and peace and, maybe most importantly, hope. Because here isn't always where I want to be, but it's exactly where I'm supposed to be.

Sunday, August 28, 2011


I know. The title of this post lacks any and all kinds of cleverness. But it does very effectively state the topic and what's been on my mind for the past week - seeing as I moved in, participated in a ridiculous number of orientation programs, and started classes in the past eight days. It also may serve as a subtle warning that this is yet another post about what's going on in my life presently (cue the groaning and eye-rolling). And if it didn't...well...hopefully the last sentence did a better job.
I love it here. By the grace of God the transition was as smooth as a cross-country move could be. I think I was just so excited to have a bed in a definite location again after LaVida (one of the most amazing experiences of my life; possible post on that later) that it was easy to settle in. However it happened, it's been a season of new experiences and new faces and a LOT of forgetting that I need more time to walk places than I think I do.
My world has expanded, and I like it. I have a pond in my backyard; it's the greatest thing ever. I also live in a house full of teenagers and somehow it's still peaceful enough to sleep at night. Not that I've been sleeping much.
God is so good. He brought me here safely in so many ways and He's here with me now, holding my hand through the learning process. I was terrified of leaving when I was still at home; here I'm content. And constantly amazed at the reality that I see before me every day. I live in this beautiful place, with people who have already accepted me for who I am and with whom I have begun to build friendships. The Christian community is alive and well and thriving in the richest sense of the word here - in fact I am off to a nighttime worship service in about thirty seconds. I can't wait.
In terms of small blessings, my favorite things so far have been having unlimited internet, even though I shouldn't be up late enough for that to matter, and eating cookie dough with a spoon and not feeling guilty about it, and having my own milk and bananas. Walking everywhere is great too - it gives me more time to think.
So this is where I am - physically, about 40 minutes outside of Boston, and mentally/spiritually, amazed. God is good, whether I'm walking to class in the sunshine or doing homework in my dorm while a hurricane rages outside (the hurricane was seriously disappointing, by the way. At least in this area). I pray that this will be my theme throughout college, no matter what challenges I may face.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

And The Results Are In...

So here's what my week of (slightly unconventional) thankfulness looked like. It was harder than I expected - not because I couldn't find things to be thankful for (quite the contrary) but because I wanted to write down the same things (namely friends and photographs) over and over again.

But I tried to be well as genuine. You can be the judge of how that went. I don't know if it helped in terms of slowing down time, but as I'm sitting here surrounded by suitcases and more stuff than I knew I owned, I'm fairly awestruck by how blessed I've been. I have more possessions than I could ever need and I have a family that just might miss me and friends that accept me unconditionally for who I am. I've already been on some incredible adventures and now, standing on the cusp of the biggest adventure yet, I know that I'm ready for this. And I'm so grateful for everything that's led to this moment - all the good times and the laughter and the encouragement, but also the hard times and the tears and the struggles.

Anyway. Enough soliloquizing. Without further slightly eclectic, occasionally odd, and surprisingly personal list of things that, by God's grace, I recognized as undeserved gifts this past week.

1. Lazy mornings. I woke up feeling a little bit under the weather, so I stayed in bed until I felt better in the early afternoon. It was glorious. Rest is a more important blessing than I realize most of the time.
2. The sunlight patterns on the floor. I really can't explain this one...I just really like the way the sun comes in through my blinds, in tiny patches of light.
3. Cheesecake. It's proof that God really does love mankind, I think. So delicious.
4. Smiles - and photographs to preserve them. Seeing happy people makes me happy.
5. Laughter - and video cameras to capture whole moments forever. There aren't words for the joy I feel when I'm laughing so hard that my eyes tear up with the people I love most in the whole world.
6. Thoughtful notes. I've saved most of my birthday cards over the years, because my friends always write such nice things in them.
7. The feeling of appreciation. Hence the saving of birthday cards. It's nice to be able to go back and remember that I am loved.

1. A good night's sleep. Life is so much easier when I'm well-rested.
2. The smell of scones baking. It's such a morning kind of smell that makes me excited to get up.
3. Telling stories around the breakfast table. Good food + good friends + good conversation = the best way to start a birthday.
4. Piles of blankets and pillows. Another one of those things I can't explain. The aftermath of sleepovers is my favorite kind of mess.
5. Head-clearing drives. No music, no phone calls, just uninterrupted time to think and pray and perceive more clearly.
6. Aimless wanderings. I don't like doing nothing, but I like having nothing to do. Especially with a best friend. In Barnes and Noble.
7. Companionable silence. Sometimes silence speaks more than words ever could, and those moments are some of the most beautiful experiences I've ever had.

1. Rain. There isn't anything I don't like about rain - it's cool and refreshing and it makes colors more visible. The ground smells good after rain, and the air feels cleaner. It's such a blessing - and I'm just thankful for it for superficial reasons.
2. Those moments when I come up over a hill and have a clear view of the sky. The clouds were amazing after the rain, and I was amazed by God's handiwork when I got to see them.
3. Sitting and listening to people talking, laughing, and enjoying life during the "shortest party of the week."
4. Powerful songs that speak to me right where I'm at.
5. Peaceful moments of observation and reflection. Especially when I happen to have my camera on hand.
6. Finally getting to sit down and breathe a sigh of relief after a stressful experience.
7. The simplicity of a child's reasoning.

1. Checkmarks that indicate completion. I appreciate them on humorous birthday cards too.
2. Quick reconciliation. Staying mad at someone is just not worth it.
3. Reassurance. It comes in many forms, but it's always a blessing - whether I realize it or not.
4. Flavor, and food that's full of it.
5. Movies that are so funny, it feels like an obligation to quote them repeatedly.
6. Spending time with people who quote said movies repeatedly.
7. Making faces at stoplights with said people.
8. Joy so overwhelming that there's no room for sadness.

1. sweat that means I accomplished something before noon
2. childhood memories, shared and relived
3. baking - the way individual ingredients combine to make a finished product that is more than the sum of its parts
4. family dinner, and time spent together in the kitchen
5. unexpected compliments
6. sudden inspirations
7. caminando con mi papi y hablando en espanol
8. team efforts - better together than alone
9. train whistles at night

1. Undeniable evidences of blessing
2. Dreams that make me think
3. My car engine starting, which is something I should be much more thankful for than I am
4. Having enough gas in my car to take the long way home
5. Promises of return - not goodbyes, just see you laters
6. Text messages that make me smile
7. Contented fullness after a delicious meal

And finally, for the last day I spent in California...
1. memories
2. amazing friends who have always been there for me
3. providence
4. grace
5. love
6. family
7. hope
8. and most of all, life.

(I posted this from the Logan Airport in Boston, by the way.)

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Seven Days of Thankfulness

Or, "an exercise in recognizing the often passed-over blessings in the mundane moments and occasionally unpleasant details of everyday life."

How's that for a blog post title?

My mom's reading this book called One Thousand Gifts, and I'm hoping she finishes it soon because I really want to read it before I leave. It's about learning gratitude right where you are in life, regardless of exactly where that is.

The author, Ann Voskamp, literally wrote a list of 1000 things she was thankful for. I'm hoping to do that someday too. But for now I thought I'd start with listing 5-10 things (experiences, moments, occurrences, people, objects, etc.) that I'm thankful for every day for the next week as both a way to say farewell to all the amazing evidences of grace that I'm leaving here in California, and a way to transition into my first year of college with my eyes wide open, learning to appreciate the beauty that's found in the little things.

Also, the author says that experiencing joy in individual moments slows down time, so I'm kind of hoping that doing this will help draw out my final days a little longer, so that I can have more memories to savor when I look back on this week of parting.

I can't become a significantly more thankful person in a day, so if I list things that I ordinarily would complain about, it's because God is enabling me to see that the things I consider to be challenges, burdens, or afflictions could really be blessings in disguise - either leading to a good thing or showing me that I should be thankful when I do not have to deal with those kinds of things.

That said, the first thing I'm thankful for today is:

1. the cold I'm currently battling. It's SO ANNOYING. But even in that statement, there's evidence of a blessing - it's annoying because I'm not accustomed to living with illness. In fact, I am a fairly healthy person. And I have God to thank for that. Sadly, I don't stop to do that often - I just complain when I'm sick. By His grace, however, it's different this time - and I know it must be His grace, because who usually thanks God for colds? Not me. I am today though: I am thankful for this cold because it reminds me to be thankful for all the days that I have been able to enjoy life illness-free.

2. Next, I'm thankful for the moments of peace in our household, when my brothers not only tolerate but maybe even enjoy each other's company. I like home so much better when it isn't full of anger.

3. I'm thankful for my sense of taste. I made two cheesecakes and a batch of cupcakes today for my birthday party tomorrow (and I promise I did not sneeze in the batter. Honest.) and, of course, taste-tested everything. That's pretty much the reason I bake - so that I get first dibs on everything I make, haha. But what fun would that be if it all tasted the same? Or didn't taste at all? It was so kind of God to not only give us the ability to taste, but to create an endless variety of flavors and textures for us to enjoy. Because of our tastebuds, eating isn't just essential to staying alive - it's an agreeable experience.

4. He is unbelievable incorrigible sometimes, but I still thank God for our dog, Blackjack. Today he came upstairs and found me in my room, which is something he's not supposed to do (usually he's confined to the kitchen). But I couldn't be mad at him when his tail started wagging the second he saw me and he ran over to say hello.

5. I'm so glad that God gave someone the idea to invent books. Books are my favorite. They let me go anywhere in the world - back or forward in time, even - and explore places that I will never see with my own eyes. They educate me and inspire me and instill in me a love for creation by showing me how very little I know about it. Today I'm especially thankful for this book I'm reading that I don't like at all, because instead of being aimless like the main character in this pointless story, I'm reminded that I have so much to live for and a reason - the best Reason - to be alive.

6. This one is unusual too, but it's true: I'm thankful that our dishwasher doesn't work anymore. Very few things force you to stop and think and absorb and appreciate like hand-washing a whole pile of dishes does. In fact, it was while I was doing dishes that I decided to embark on this endeavor in an effort to more fully appreciate my last week in California until I come home for Christmas in December.

That's it for now - even though there are a million other things I could add to this fairly short list, I will save them for another time. More tomorrow. :)

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Stupid Mistakes, and Greater Grace

I did something stupid yesterday.
Something so stupid that I would very much like to pretend it didn't happen at all. Something so stupid that I wish I could go back and fix that moment so that it didn't happen at all.
But no amount of wishing changes the truth. The truth is, a) it happened, and b) I have a lot to be thankful for.
Since the instant after I realized what I did, I've been saying to myself, "I can't believe I did that." It was difficult to register what happened, because I completely did not expect it, but it's not my confusion talking - it's my pride. I'm really saying, "I shouldn't be stupid enough to do that. I'm better than that. I should be perfect. Always."
But that is NOT true. Unfortunately I am a slow learner in this regard and it's going to take a LOT more mistakes, accidents, and failures to drive the point home for me. I am not perfect - only God is. I am not independent - I depend on the One who gave me life. I am not competent - it's only through Him that I can do anything good at all.
So I have an opportunity here. I can learn from my mistake and grow in my ability to accept my shortcomings and rely more fully on the eternally-sufficient grace of God, or I can keep beating myself up for something I cannot change.
While in my sinfulness I'm prone to choose the latter option, I can see God's grace at work in me through this occurrence already. In years past, I have reacted far more extremely to much less serious mistakes. I thank God for teaching me that it isn't the end of the world when I mess up, and overreacting doesn't help anyone in any way ever.
I also see His grace in that one of the first things to come to mind after the incident was a concept from the John Piper message used in last night's Speechless presentation: God is enough.
I don't give glory to God in every aspect of my life if He's only enough for me when life is good! In order to truly make much of Christ in my life, He has to be sufficient for me during the hard times, when accidents happen and I make terrible mistakes.
And He is enough - He is bigger than my stupidity, hallelujah! And even in the midst of regret, I found joy. My car was fine. The other car was fine. No one was hurt. No one was even mad at me except myself! No one (as far as I know) lost faith in me as a (mostly) capable driver. And that one moment did not negate the amazing time I got to spend with three of my favorite people (and one hilarious little brother, haha).
The truth is, it could have been SO MUCH WORSE. But it wasn't, and instead of dwelling on my mistake, I'm learning (too slowly, it seems at times) to be thankful for the blessings I receive even in the midst of trials. It amazes me that God has done so much work on me already, and I hope and pray that it continues to completion.
But while I remain a frail, fallible, accident-prone human, I hold on to this promise:
But he said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness." Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. (2 Corinthians 12:9 ESV)
God is enough.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011


I've decided that I like being candid when I post. I don't have much to hide anyway, but I guess blogging feels more worthwhile when it's open and honest.
That said, the following post is a slightly modified journal entry from last week's First Friday Fast. It was the first time I seriously committed to fasting on the first Friday and it's definitely something I will do again, by God's grace.

I wish my reluctance to admit it made it less true, but when I'm being honest I know that I don't strive to become more dependent on God.
I'm a perfectionist. I like being responsible, capable. Skilled in a wide variety of areas. I like independence and accomplishment. My worst fear is incompetence. I want to do everything right, my way, the first time. I want to rule my life like my own personal kingdom and keep everything in order according to my preferences and specifications.
Sometimes, I feel like I'm doing okay - I feel good, I'm doing well. And then my neat little facade comes crumbling down the minute I get angry, or I say something nasty, or I'm insulted, or something unexpected and inconvenient happens.
It's in those moments that I reach for grace, because I am confronted with my need in a way that makes it impossible to deny.
But the Gospel, and the grace that has been lavished on me so that I might not only accept it, but live it, is not only true in my moments of failure! It is not only relevant when I admit my incapability. It is not only powerful when I recognize my need for it.
The truth is, my need for grace is just as great in the moments when I'm standing as it is when I've fallen flat on my face. It's only by His grace that I can stand at all, but in my pride I like to think it's my strength.
I'm fasting today. There's been a dull ache in my stomach for most of the day, reminding me of my need for food.
I'm experiencing physical pain because I'm denying myself physical sustenance. For less than a day.
Do I experience spiritual pain when I'm deprived of my spiritual sustenance? Does my soul cry out in agony, like my stomach is, when its need for the Living Water goes unfulfilled for a day?
I might feel guilty, but I don't usually feel hungry. I say that He is my everything, but that claim is not always reflected in my lifestyle.
Even now, when my physical hunger is supposed to drive me to my knees as I see my need for God through my need for food, I'm just counting down the minutes to dinner, marking time until I can eat again.
Already I feel proud of myself for making it this long without consuming a single calorie. I'm tempted to commend myself when I start my day with Bible reading and prayer, and I like to think I did something right when my day goes well.
I'm terrified of college because everything familiar will be taken away from me and the only thing that will remain the same is God. But I think that might be exactly what I need - a wake-up call so eye-opening that it's shocking. I need to see how much I need God, how little I truly am capable of (it's summed up in four words: sin leading to death), how much He's given me.
I want to live in a place of humble awe and worship of who He is and what He's done in my life. May I live in wonder of the mystery of election and adoption, of the love and mercy He has inexplicably poured out on me. May I say with Charles Spurgeon, "He must have elected me for reasons unknown to me, for I could never find any reason in myself why He should have looked upon me with special love."
When I find myself in that place, may I not be tempted to congratulate myself for reaching it - because it will be all His doing with none of my help.
My prayer is that He would teach me to hunger for Him, to crave time with Him like I'm craving food right now. I want to learn to rely on Him, the true Bread of Life and the Living Water that satisfies.
Me - Jesus = nothing.
Jesus + nothing = everything.

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

A Story Never Written

All right, so the title isn't particularly accurate. Clearly I did write the following, otherwise I wouldn't be able to post it. A better title would be "a story never posted," but I'm posting it now so that isn't true either.
Anyway. I wrote this with the intention of posting it in pieces on Facebook, but for some reason I don't think I ever finished. I found it on my iPod today and thought it was worth posting - partially because I found it convicting, even though I wrote it, and mostly because I have nothing else to post at present. But don't despair! That will change shortly!
In the meantime, without further ado...

We are the privileged.
But we don't understand it.
We compare ourselves to the wrong people.
We look at what we don't have rather than what we do have.
Maybe we don't have the new iPad, but we have clean water constantly, readily available.
Maybe we don't have the latest and greatest smart phone, but we have shoes. More than one pair, in fact.
Maybe we don't have the nicest car, or the most expensive clothes, or the fanciest computers, but we have roofs over our heads and food on our tables, three times a day.
We have everything we need and a good deal of what we want.
And still we don't understand.
There are children dying of malnourishment, disease, and neglect (among various other reasons) in dozens if not hundreds of countries around the world and we think life isn't fair because we can't get exactly what we want when we want it.
We live in an age where we can reach thousands of people with the touch of a button.
We speak the language of technology in its various dialects - phones, computers, video game systems, mp3 players, stereos, etc. - but so few of us fail to take advantage of what we have been given.
Not only do we not understand gratitude, we don't understand the impact we could have on the world and the change we could bring about. We have an opportunity staring us in the face and we are blind to it.
If we could join our voices together and fight for a common cause, we would create a roar so loud that it would resonate in every corner of the globe.
A common cause, a single goal. No matter what it is, we could accomplish it with very little effort, if only we would wake up and understand.
But we don't, because we don't understand who we are. We are the privileged, and we prefer to live our comfortable lives in oblivion.

Sunday, June 5, 2011


(*that really shouldn't be plural, because at present I only have one, but "Confession" just doesn't have the same ring to it)

There should probably be another disclaimer here about how this is another more personal, less thought-out post about what's happening currently in the oh-so-riveting life of one Emily Macadam. I would write one, but I figure that sentence does the trick equally well.

Here goes...

I don't want to graduate.

There, I said it. Oddly enough, I don't feel any release or relief or urge to jump off a building shouting, "I can fly!"

Sure, I'm excited about college. I'm thrilled with the way God orchestrated the events that were necessary to allow me to attend Gordon. I can't wait to meet new people, make new friends, experience new things, explore new places...

But at the same time, I'm quite happy with my current friends. I'm content with the familiar things. There are plenty of places I haven't explored right here in Orange County. The problem is, whether I get on board or not, change is coming faster than a runaway freight train and no drastic measure I could take to slow it down would prove effective in the slightest.

I get kinda eloquent when I'm experiencing deep emotions; can you tell?

Yesterday I went to the first of several graduation parties that I will be attending in the coming weeks. It was a time of joy and celebration, but there was an almost palpable undercurrent of sadness. Graduation is a tremendous milestone: marking not only an achievement, but the end of a chapter. It means new decisions and directions, goodbyes and hellos.

I've learned, in the past year, how much I hate goodbyes. I'm eager for the next step, for continued growth in responsibility and maturity and wisdom. But taking that step means giving up so much - even if it's only temporary.

If I'm being honest, the prospect of leaving home terrifies me as much as excites me. I'm afraid of losing my friends, of leaving for so long that they have time to fill the hole my absence might create with new friends. I'm afraid of coming home and feeling completely out of place, out of touch, out of style. Being replaced.

But I can't stay, because everyone is moving on too. If I don't get on the train, I really will be left behind. I can't stop the clock or opt to live in the past. I can only move forward, or be lost in the stampede.

So many conflicting thoughts, emotions. But when all the confusion is stripped away, the bare-bones truth is this: I can't stay a child forever. Growing up is a fact of life and there is nothing I can do to prevent it. If I accept it for what it is, knowing that God will always provide for me and never leave me or forsake me, then I will find joy even in sorrow, and a new beginning at the bittersweet close of this chapter.

Getting older sucks, but God is still good.

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Days Go By...

I never intended this blog to be about my life, partly because it's not interesting enough to post about on the Internet (at least, aside from Facebook) and partly because that's what journals are for.
But after a crazy couple of months, I think it's worth posting here that the trips I have been on recently have impacted me in a number of ways and I am so grateful for the opportunities I was given to go back East to visit some colleges that I was considering, to fly to Colorado by myself to see CCU, and to travel to Macedonia with my good friend Alyssa.
Probably the biggest result of these trips is my college decision - I will be attending Gordon College in Massachusetts in the fall and I am so excited!! But I also learned, through a variety of experiences, the value of friendship, family, simplicity, solitude, silence, submission, and asking. After spending three weeks in Macedonia eating delicious food, I rediscovered my desire to exercise upon returning to the States as well.
That, in a nutshell, is where I'm at and where I've been. Next on the agenda is graduating...but I'm told finals have to happen before that particular event takes place, unfortunately.
There are some MK pictures on my Facebook profile, or you can check out just a few of my favorite snapshots here.

Monday, March 7, 2011


Well, it's a good thing my New Year's resolution didn't have to do with blogging more often, because I would have already failed miserably. Come to think of it, I don't think I had a New Year's resolution this year at all, actually.
Anyway. I've been reading this awesome book called Spiritual Disciplines for the Christian Life (thanks Ben :]). In chapter two there's this great quote from D.L. Moody. He states the following:
"A man can no more take in a supply of grace for the future than he can eat enough for the next six months, or take sufficient air into his lungs at one time to sustain life for a week. We must draw upon God's boundless store of grace from day to day as we need it."
Personally I find this statement quite convicting. It's not my habit to start each day by seeking grace, humbly admitting that I can't make it through on my own strength. Instead, I rely on my lacking abilities to get by, only stopping to ask for grace when I've failed - miserably - yet again.
I wonder what kind of difference it would make if I began to pray for the understanding that I have no power in and of myself to succeed in life, or even to make it through a single 24-hour period without sinning? What if I began to view grace not as something that I withdraw only when I have a debt to pay, but as something that is as readily available, but also as crucially essential to life, as air?
It's a little bit late for a New Year's resolution, but if we waited around for the new year to make changes in our lives all the time, we'd never get anything done. So this is my resolution, starting today, March 7: to begin each day with a petition for grace, understanding my need for it at all times, not just when I fail.