Monday, September 19, 2011

The Prodigal Daughter

One of my favorite parables in the Bible comes from Luke and is titled The Prodigal Son. To summarize, it's a story about a son who runs away from his home simply because he wants to. The father's heart breaks and yearns for his son, but he knows that someday his son will return. One day, the father knows that the day has come--his son is coming home to him. He runs out to the field and meets his son, who is now poor and dirty, with open arms. The father orders a feast to be made for the return of his son who chose to leave his home. The son doesn't understand why his dad is so forgiving...but he just IS. If you didn't catch it, the father in this story is God and we are the son. I have been feeling like this prodigal son for a while now. I have felt space between myself and God, knowing it was me and not Him. Knowing that my God is jealous for me and wants an intimate relationship with me. I continued to be distracted by pointless and earthly things, letting the days pass by without even a glance towards my Bible. Not even a thought to where the day came from! For who blessed the day! This is not me or who God created me to be! I am here for a purpose, and that purpose is to worship my God, my KING! He deserves all of the praise and honor, not a mere thought when I "have the time".

During chapel this morning, the speaker said something that really got me teary-eyed: Like a child and a father, God waits for us to curl up into His arms. We might say, "I've missed You Father", and in response He would say, "But I've been here all along." No matter what you do or don't do, God is ALWAYS there, just like the father in the story of the Prodigal Son. He is waiting for you to turn back to Him and for you to make Him the center of your life, and not just another thing to check off your to-do list. After spending two hours in the prayer chapel tonight, I'm feeling so much closer already. I curled up into my Father's arms tonight and did something I haven't done in a while--I gave Him ALL of my time and attention for however long necessary. God is the groom, and we are the bride. We are supposed to have an intimate relationship with Him. I know I'll have many more times where I'll forget this and go astray, but at the end of the day, I know He'll be waiting with arms wide open, ready to embrace me and tell me He's been there all along waiting for me to come home.

Thank you Father for your UNCONDITIONAL love! There is no love like Your love! Nothing on Earth even comes close! Help me to yearn for You like You yearn for me! Set a thirst in my soul that only you can quench Lord! I long to know You and give You all of the praise You are worthy of! Thank You for being jealous for me and pursuing me even when I don't pursue You. I love You soooo much!

With Love,

Thursday, September 15, 2011

So I'm A Sophomore...

It's true, my second year of college is in action at the end of my second week of being back in school. I forgot how wonderful campus was filled with happy faces and hugs :) I love being at a school where I randomly run into my sister or friends daily. APU is small enough where I feel important, but big enough so I can keep meeting new people. I love my semester already! My favorite class is definitely Intro to Teaching! It is making me so excited to get to my career in just a few short years! I am reminded quite often of how blessed I am to be here--here in this beautiful, God-centered, amazing place! It's all thanks to God! Today, I was reminded in the form of asking my teacher a question about a homework assignment I did and him interrupting me saying, "Ya know, you are a very nice person. I like you." Excuse me, my teacher notices me and values me? Yep! In my English class, we do a five minute devotional every day and reflect on a Bible verse given to us...and it's part of my grade?! Yep! APU is the best thing that's ever happened to me! I know when I graduate, it will be a culture shock in a sense because I will no longer constantly be surrounded by Christians just waiting to lift me up in prayer and thoughts, but this "in-between" period has already been so amazing and I'm SO happy to have another two years here after this one. I have never had so many friends or teachers that genuinely care about me. It makes me emotional just thinking about it! God is SO good to me and I see His blessings in so many ways here!

In other news, I am so excited for YoungLife to start at the new group we have at Sierra High School! A year ago I didn't even know what YoungLife was! Now this will have been my third school that I've done YoungLife at! How crazy is that?! God definitely challenged me this past year in various way, but I know it was so necessary for me to grow! I'm crossing my fingers on the Senior Leader thing but either way, I'm soooo happy to be leading with Jamie and Harrison! I love them both so much and never laugh harder than when I'm with them! I just know God is going to work in these kids' hearts and it's going to be beautiful :) Difficult, but SO worth it!

Also, the studying abroad thing. I'm trying to finish up and get an application in before October 1st to a program I found in London! It's through a Christian organization, which I really wanted! I need to be praying about it because it's definitely something that I go back and forth with in my head! I feel like God keeps bringing it back though for a reason haha! I don't know...we shall see what happens with that!

Anyways, time to go to job #2 of the day!

Thank you Lord for Your provision and love and alllll of Your blessings!