Thursday, February 25, 2016

Please, Please, Let Me Love You

We, Americans, live in a culture where people are always rising to defend others. They want society to know that it's okay if you love cats, and it's okay if you love dogs. It's okay if you like to bike, or snowboard, or skateboard. It's okay if you like black, but if you like yellow, that's alright too. Introvert, or extrovert? Both are good. Do you like to stay inside and read, are you a geek, or a nerd? It's all good. Some of us are vegetarians, and some of us like steak. Don't worry, both of you are accepted. Do you like the cold, or thrive in the sun? Whichever you choose is excellent. Coffee is good, but tea is good too. Muslim, hindu, atheist, agnostic, buddhist, you're all okay.

I am a christian. 

That's not okay.

I get it, I really do. I've been hurt by people who have claimed that title as well. I've seen their hypocritical ways. I've watched them tear people down. I've heard them lie through their teeth. I know. 

Please, please, let me tell you. They are not christians. The meaning of christian is "to be Christ-like," and even if you don't believe the Bible was truly inspired by God, you at least know that Jesus Christ was known as a good man. A kind man. A loving man. A man who cared for others more than he cared for himself. Here's the thing, and please stay with me, I could spend all day telling you I'm a fish, but when you look at me you don't see scales. You don't see gills. You don't see fins. No matter how much I tell you I'm a fish, you won't believe me, even if I'm convinced of it myself; that's not what you see. Don't you think there are people who can knock on your door and say the word christian, and be wrong?

We're a culture of not setting stereotypes, and yet for years I have feared stepping forward and saying the words "I am a christian." I was afraid, because I knew I would be put into a category I didn't want to be a part of. I didn't want to be seen as the one who brings the Bible to you and proceeds to force it down your throat. I didn't want you to see me as the one who would turn away from you because you did something the Bible teaches against. I didn't want to be seen as someone of judgement, instead of someone with love. 

Here I am, begging you, do not put me in that box with the other "christians" who have hurt you. Let me love you. Let me walk beside you and show you what the word Christian really means. When I fall, recognize that it's not because I have a Bible, but because I forgot to open it. When you ask me for advice, or my opinion, expect real and honest answers, but know that even if it's not the answer you wanted, I still love you. I am still here for you. I still care about you, even if I don't agree with you. If you want to know why, I will gladly tell you, but be prepared to hear the answer.

I love you, because Christ loves me. 

With Love,

Saturday, February 20, 2016

Journal Entry; 2-19-2016

What if you suddenly changed?
     What if all at once your world turned upside down, and what if it wasn't in the bad way, but the way that made you want to run around and tell everyone? To the point that they thought you were completely crazy, but that's okay because you already know you're acting like someone who has gone completely insane.
     Like you're drunk on something wonderful; because you've been drunk on hard liquor before and it's never been beautiful.
     You're running around like a lunatic, but it's okay because you know you've found your home. Not home like, where mama cooks supper on Sunday nights, no, this is a comfort so deep it was born into you. Like cherokee blood, or your daddy's small ears.
     It's always been apart of you, but you had no idea till someone told you.
     You are home; and as you fall into the warm embrace of overwhelming love, it's as if a switch has been flipped. The light has come on and you now realize you've been here all along. Here, in the arms of your Father.

With Love,

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Life Update

This is going to be a quick update on my life thus far at Bethany Global University. Quick because I have several homework assignments I need to be working on; but while homework is important, so my dear readers, are you. I may get busy, but I do want to keep you all in the loop, so here we go.

Today we did not have class. It was Day Set Apart. This is a day that we have once a semester. The campus puts everything on hold, and pauses to praise and worship God. We spent a lot of time in prayer, lifting our school and all the mission outreaches we are partnering with, in prayer. It was peaceful for me. To be able to take the time they gave us today, and simply praise my Heavenly Father.

Call Center Team
On the normal days, you can find me either in the classroom, chugging tea and frantically scribbling notes; or in the call center. Every student is given a practical training assignment when they start at BGU. That's pretty much just an on campus job, it has several purposes, but the main ones are as follows...

  1. They don't have to hire and pay people to do the things students can do. They take our pay out of our tuition. This is one of the reasons why BGU is able to be a tuition-paid school. 
  2. You are able to start learning how to serve, right here on campus. Sometimes you're assigned a PT assignment that you really didn't want, but guess what, sometimes you have to do things you don't want to do. 
My practical training assignment is to be an admissions counselor in the call center. (Yep, I'm that one random person you don't know who just keeps calling) When I got here, it was the one place I knew I would be the most uncomfortable in and of course, this is where I was assigned. Funny part, I never told anyone that being a caller is what would grow me the most. God just knows these things.

Minnehaha Falls
God knew I would grow, but He also knew I would be blessed. The people I work with in that office are some of the most amazing women I've ever met. They're brave. They're funny. They're passionate. They're tenacious. They're the kind of people I want to do life with.

Also, special shout out to Silvia. My amazing boss and friend back home. Her training in sales and business gave me an amazing base to launch off of in the call center. Thanks for teaching me those life skills lady!

Otherwise, I've been plugging away at homework, co-teaching a bible class to a bunch of kids every Wednesday night, and going on random adventures. Sometimes that include scrambling down frozen staircases to crawl into the jaws of a frozen waterfall (yay, Minnesota), or visiting coffee shops that have pictures of goats on the wall.

I would make this a little longer and give you all more details, but I've put off my worldview's papers long enough. I'm writing one on Moralistic Therapeutic Deism, and the other on Phoebe Buffay who is lovable and adorable, but also overwhelmingly New Age. Should be fun.

Love and miss everyone back home.  I miss Smith Rock and its beautiful red face. I miss my coffee shops, and being a nanny. I miss the girls I used to work with at Gymboree, and I miss the Old Mill. I miss my Costco people, and I miss going out with friends to talk about life. I miss so much, but I'm happy.

With Love,