living and working in a new city for a portion of this summer sure has its perks: i park my car each day beside my favorite college football stadium; aspen coffee co. has three convenient locations in town for me to get my frozen hot chocolate fix; and i have become an honorary bennett girl with a few lovely ladies, some that i grew up with and some that i’ve gotten to know just recently. one such chick happens not only to be one of my closest friends, but also my co-worker and a superb photographer. after confirming my assignment in quebec this summer, i approached jessica about snapping some photos of me for a personalized prayer card to distribute to friends and family. from the beginning of my committment to ministry through missions, jessica has pledged to support me (and other missionaries she knows) prayerfully, and one day financially when she is equipped to do so. one way she is presently carrying out this ministry with me is by capturing these moments on film, helping me design a cute card, and contributing cheerfully with me to covering their printing costs! i love how her vision for supporting and encouraging those in missions is so much broader than most others’. she’s using her talents and passions, not just her checkbook. good stuff, y’all!
we ventured downtown yesterday to shoot some samples, and even tried out some areas of our backyard. she delivered, y’all! here are just a few:
we selected three shots to use in a template from tiny prints, and voila! here’s what my prayer cards will look like:
what do y’all think? a shipment of cards should be in by the first weekend of june, and i can’t wait to get them sent out. interested in having one for your fridge, bulletin board, dart board, or shooting target? shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org with your address, and i’ll make sure one lands your way. :) i leave in 30 days!
my dear friend lindsey is back from her mission trip to india! a little jet-lagged and joyful, lindz shared with me some of her experiences last night over the phone. two weeks of service has melted her heart. she walked through the taj mahal, prayed with people in slums, held babies painted to look like hindu gods, and did any task asked of her to aid the missionaries already there. one of the things she said that has stuck by me most since our conversation was, “i love oklahoma. before, i never thought i could live anywhere else. now, i know i can. God’s all i need.” how’s that for authentic faith?
and anyone who has given up houses or brothers or sisters or father or mother or children or property, for my sake, will receive a hundred times as much in return… // matthew 19:29
one of my most precious friends from back home will be spending two weeks in india next month, may 2nd through the 17th. few words could explain how proud of and thrilled for lindsey i am! i beg you to join me in prayer for the hearts of lindsey, the rest of her team, and the sweet faces of india to be prepared for how He will move among them. pray for divine opportunities to make themselves starkly known, for focus and safety, for flexibility and a cohesive team, and for the love of Christ to be made beautifully clear.
i am so excited. =)
my dear friend sebastien has finally provided a voice of reason amidst the hot debate on modesty at obu. below you will find a tongue-in-cheek editorial from a man’s outlook – something long awaited and vitally needed in the often catty, female-dominated dispute over what is and isn’t modest. i hope you too can get a little giggle and some perspective on the responsibilities both genders have in keeping our thoughts in check.
musings on the “modest” girls of OBU:
baptist girls are an odd lot. okay, maybe not all of them, but there are enough here at OBU to at least merit a mention. i’ve heard numerous girls talk about and read a few blogs about girls causing their “brothers” to “stumble.” for those of you who don’t know what i’m talking about, let me fill you in. these girls feel as if wearing clothing that isn’t completely covering all of their body below their neck and above the elbows and knees is causing troublesome distractions to guys. tt makes them fall by the wayside. it leads them away from their journey with God. they talk about guys as if they’re these poor creatures who can’t handle seeing a collarbone or who will fall away from God if they catch a glimpse of cleavage. some even go as far as to proclaim that guys have it far worse than girls, saying that they can’t do much in their manner of dress to make a girl stumble.
i have female friends “stumbling” all over the place thanks to guys.
apparently guys are akin to some poor child who just can’t help himself, as if he may go hire a prostitute or get a girl pregnant after seeing a female student wearing heels or a skirt that’s above the knees. the guys just see that and lose their minds, i suppose.
others make promises to never intentionally make a “brother” “stumble”. i promise you that guys can handle your clothing. none of the girls here at OBU wear anything that scandalous. i also promise you that if a girl wears clothing that is flattering to her body, that can present just as much of a danger, whether she is showing cleavage or not. a girl who dresses for her body is going to get noticed, skin or not.
what i find worse is that some of these girls then target other girls in the school who, painful as it may sound, dress better than them – girls who take care of themselves and take pride in how they look. these “modest” girls write hateful things that are very clearly intended for specific people, thinking that they’re doing it for a greater good. they make snide comments to the faces of girls who wouldn’t dress scandalous if their lives depended on it, because they think their top is too low or showing too much skin. they make themselves feel like they’re the better person because they chose not to put forth any thought into what would look good.they quote scripture, using verses like 1 timothy 2:9-10, saying not to “braid your hair or wear gold or pearls,” and 1 thessalonians 4:7, saying that “God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. ” i don’t know if that’s an attempt to equate dressing nice with being impure , but i know you’d be hard pressed to find a female anywhere that hasn’t worn gold or pearls. not all Bible verses are still relevant to our times.
having said all of that, here is my proposal for you girls. wear a potato sack. wear big sweatshirts and oversize jeans. give up makeup and don’t even think of shaping your eyebrows. stop getting haircuts to accent your features. buy all of your clothing 3 sizes larger than normal. don’t wear anything that clings to your body or curves in any way, please, for we may stumble. and to those of you promising to never make us stumble: fear not, you probably never have.
it’s true. as of yesterday, i am no longer a teen. :-D and i owe an extravagant and joyous birthday weekend to my dear friends here at obu – and my sweet mama who sent me a gorgeous bouquet of flowers. i cannot wait to snap a photo of it once all of the buds bloom!
well, in case you ever wanted to know what goes on during one’s birthday in our circle of friends, here is the inside look.
a lively bunch at abuelita rosa’s serenaded me friday evening. i could not contain me glee!
kelly and addison are perhaps two of the most precious people i know. after pigging out with jake and some new guy on the baseball team, we retired to watch an andy warhol bio that left us puzzled.
even the colonel decided to get in on the fun.
last night capped off the elaborate weekend, as we cheered on our obu bison at the basketball game, then took over the local chili’s with kelly, addi, moi, sebastien, anastasia, curtis, kyle, katie, and taylor d. [yes, i am aware you know none of these individuals, but listing them like that makes it look like i have an entourage.]
i am so blessed.
this past year brought me new responsibilities that i never expected to come my way so soon. one of these is a position as the what’s next coordinator for switch at the edmond campus of lifechurch.tv, where i have the opportunity to disciple new believers and follow up with them on their spiritual journey. discipleship is something i am deeply passionate about, especially when it comes to the youth i work with. it is so amazing to be a tiny part in raising up a biblically literate and spiritually mature group of kids! in the last two months at switch, He has allowed me to become close with a group of several high school girls who are all close friends themselves. they approached me together one week after switch to talk about recommitting their lives to following Christ, and He has opened up a great line of communication between us since. each girl has been faithfully attending church on the weekends and wednesday evenings, and their excitement at discovering new verses that are relevant to whatever they’re experiencing at a given time is so delightful to witness! last night at switch, one of the girls expressed an interest in getting more involved at the church and finding a place to serve there. i was able to get her into contact with coordinators from lifekids, and i’m excited to see where this leads her! to me, this is such a demonstration of her growth in the last several months. one of the biggest fruits of faith is service to others in His name, and i cannot tell you how warm and fuzzy it makes me to get to see that emerge from behind the scenes. =)
okay addison, i’m copying some of your creativity today! slipping into another january is always an exciting, unknown moment. and, being my retrospective self, i’d like to pass along a few things that made this year what it was. i have a whole new appreciation for the past twelve months after looking back at this list. =)
- began my second semester of college with a break-up i thought would surely kill me
- took my first class in the honors program at obu
- maintained a 4.0
- initiated my last year as an official teen in february
- experienced further heartbreak from my first love
- attended the memorial service of his precious little cousin on my birthday
- realized i had the most loving and supportive friends and family [once again] as a result of my darkest hour
- spent priceless weekends with family who had been on the west coast for far too long :]
- had a good ole red dirt night at a randy rogers band concert with my best hometown friends
- initiated into the phi eta sigma national honor society
- continued serving with switch at lifechurch.tv and discovered amazing ministry opportunities
- went on a mission trip to eureka springs with my switch kids
- helped construct a kickin’ gravel driveway on said mission trip =)
- drove to phoenix with my sister, niece, and mom, and watched my sweet cousin marry his soulmate under palm trees
- got published in the bison
- played on a few slot machines with my mom and her best friend from college, hehehe
- experienced a medical scare that tested me financially and spiritually
- watched my brother successfully run his second full marathon – complete with hand-painted signs and loud cheers at almost every mile marker =)
- received scholarships that were blissfully unexpected
- watched a dear friend from back home graduate and accomplish great things
- craved an apology which i was sure would fix everything
- served as a team leader for the first time at super summer
- received the apology i had been craving, and remained unsatisfied
- lived in edmond for a summer
- became a member of the lifechurch.tv prayer team
- saw another close friend marry the sweetest girl in all of texas
- worked at a new place may through august and met splendid new people
- began doing on-stage activities at switch
- witnessed the greatest fireworks show of my life on independence day
- served as a sponsor for the first time at falls creek
- went to the mountain view-gotebo free fair and saw many old friends
- started serving at fuse
- began my third semester of college
- caught the domestic bug
- started teaching conversation classes with the international students at obu
- became the switch what’s next coordinator
- began a new job at the wellness center
- went on a retreat with sweet friends and opened up my heart
- participated in my first race for the cure with my family
- spent fall break with my mom on a girls’ trip to branson
- published in the bison again
- voted in my first presidential election
- learned how to play texas-hold-’em
- learned my sister is pregnant again!
- survived my first semester of western civ with an a
- realized i won’t find happiness if i won’t let go
- rekindled an old, dear friendship
- wrote a blues song =)
- learned a few french phrases
- maintained a 4.0 again
- discovered a love for the food network
- played the heck out of hungry hungry hippos with my precious nieces
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