One Thirst and Hunger

Growing up I would attend church every now and then, but it was definitely never a regular thing. For that communion was never something that I never really understood, I would take part in it because I thought it was something I thought I had to do, but all in all I didn’t understand it. When I began to really go to church when I was 15 I still didn’t see the true significance in it. So I would go up and take communion just because, but still no real significance was there. So I went on for a 4 years doing that, this was until I began attending the church that I go to in Radford.

Valley Bible Church is truly a church that was made for me. The preaching is always amazing, and the elders themselves are just amazing. Since joining this amazing family I have felt completely loved, and cared for. This family has welcomed me in with open arms, and I couldn’t be more thankful for them. In this church we do communion every Sunday, getting into that was weird at first because I had only ever done it once a month for my time in a church. So adjusting to that wasn’t necessarily difficult but instead it was just a little weird. I also felt this weirdness because of the fact that I still didn’t understand the sacredness in communion. This was until I went on summer project. (If that is shocking to you, you obviously don’t read my blog enough. I learned everything at Ocean City!)

So on project I did not just learn about my self and faith but I also learned the intimacy in a relationship with God. I learned that prayer, worship, communion, and everything of the sort are all very intimate pieces of life. In prayer you are directly communicating with God, and talking things out, and things of the sort. So when I would pray for others and have them be there with me was a very intimate thing because it showed the true love that I had for the other person. Especially when others pray for me, it’s seriously the best way for someone to show me that they love me. When it comes to worship I feel it is especially intimate for me. I love singing and worshiping God through music so anytime I ever do that with someone else it’s always a moment when I see how much they truly love God, and love what He is doing in the others life. It in my opinion is one of the most beautiful things one can see. I went on a conference with CRU in March called Big Break, and the speaker said, “If you want to know that God is real, watch college students worship.” That stuck with me, and thinking about hearing him saying it still gives me chills.

However for me communion is one of the most intimate parts of it all. I say this because as a body of believers you often do communion together as a symbol of unity, and showing the sacrifice of Christ. I learned this predominately on project because of a special thing that occurred while we were at Assateauge Island. It was our last community event so we just decided to spend the day together somewhere outside of Ocean City, and just relax while prepping to leave, and move back into “normal life”. While we were there we all gathered together and took communion together. It was such a beautiful moment, and I can’t help but remember that day, and how beautiful it was to be with everyone, and join together in that way.

Luckily enough for my life group it was not our last time taking communion for the summer. The very first week that we went to Atlantic United Methodist Church it was communion Sunday, and it was the same for our last Sunday of being there. Getting to be together with those 8 other people was one of the most beautiful moments for me. I had just shared my testimony with the entire church, and then we all took communion together. it was simply amazing. But it was there in that city that I saw the true beauty in communion. The fact that I saw that this was a very sacred moment for a believer to be doing what the 12 disciples did in their last meal with Jesus is so beautiful.

Upon returning to school I saw the true awesomeness in all the traditions of the church, and I was able to see right where the true heart of it came from. I never see communion the same now, I see the beauty in it, and I love it. I love going to church on Sunday and spending that time alone with God, and then going up front and taking communion together as a family. it is such a beautiful thing to get to share that with so many amazing believers, whom I love, and admire greatly.

I no longer see communion as something that I have to do, but instead something that I want to do as a believer, and daughter of a king. I see it as a true blessing to take part in that with so many amazing people. I now understand while couples take communion at their weddings, and why people do it at funerals and everything. I see why it is a gathering of one thirst and hunger, and why it is so important, and beautiful.

 

Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight, and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God.

-Hebrews 12:1-2

Advertisements

Meet My Big!

So in Cru we have these precious little things for us awesome kids called discipleship. I can honestly say that this has been one of the greatest parts of my time since entering college. A discipler is someone who is specifically given to help someone advance in ways of leadership, and in their faith. You typically meet at least once a week, and talk, and do little workshops, or test to check on things in your life and just to see where you are with things. Well my discipler is stinking amazing to say the least. From day one that I met her I knew that we had a special bond, and I knew that God was bringing her to me so that I would have someone to truly love me, and change my life in amazing ways! Welp without further delay meet my beautiful biggie, Becca!

becca5

Yes this is her, isn’t she gorgeous! But really she is, and she’s super sassy, and spunky which is totally what I need in a leader! Becca has helped me to see the beauty, and worth in myself that only God can give. She and I have really interesting discipleship times. When it comes to this past semester specifically pretty much every time we’ve ended it at least one of us, if not both, are in tears. You see this upcoming semester will be my last semester with my Becca. She will be leaving Radford to go to an internship, and then after that she’ll be graduating from Grad School. It’s a really sad time, but I know that this will not be the end of Brooke and Becca, and that is what I have hope in.

becca2

One thing that I really love about Becca is her openness and brokenness with me. She is always willing to be open and loving towards me, and share with me what has happened in her life so that I can see where God could be leading me. Another this is that as Becca puts it, she and I are kindred spirits. Though we are four years apart in age we have lead somewhat similar lives. We have had some of the same struggles going back as far as toddler ages. It makes me smile every time we talk about things, and they line up in the other’s life. It just goes to show you that God totally had me in mind when He created Becca!

Comedy is something that I love. In all honesty if I had to choose I would rather laugh, and smile than do anything, and that is something that Becca allows me to do all the time! Seriously she’s one of the funniest people I’ve ever met! I constantly find my self laughing, giggling, and smiling when I’m with her. There is never a dull moment when I have her with me. She makes these insane voices that are ridiculously funny, and she’s super sarcastic, and quick witted which is something I appreciate. It’s always something I enjoy so she’s really awesome for that.

becca1

One memory with Becca that I will never forget is the time we watcher “My Girl”. I was having a really awful day, and I needed a little bit of a pick me up, so I went and hung out with Becca. It of course started with talking, and hanging out, then I saw that she had the movie and I had never seen it before so I begged her to watch it with me. She was super hesitant at first, and I of course was just all for it! So we started watching the movie, and there were some really funny parts, then the end happened. I look over and Becca is in tears, and I’m giggling because it was hilarious seeing her laughing one minute, and then sobbing the next. Such a psycho. Then I started laughing really loud, and she looked at me with this sassy puppy dog face and was just like, “Look what you did you jerk.” From there I just laughed even harder, and apologized. It was such a funny moment that I’ll never forget because Becca is so ridiculous, but I love her so much more for it!

becca3

As you can see Becca is amazing, and I’m tremendously sad to be losing her in just a few months but like I said, I know it’s not the end for the two of us. She is such an amazing person and God has blessed me immensely with her. She is so kind, funny, smart, and inventive! She is really one of the most amazing people I’ve ever met, and I can’t help but love her! She’ so amazing, and I’m blessed beyond words to call her my discipler, friend, biggie, and sister! I love you Becca!

 

 

becca4

She’s gonna hate me for this, but I really think this captures just a little bit of her personality! Love you Becca! 🙂

Therefore encourage one another, and build each other up, just as you are doing.

1 Thessalonians 5:11

 

Where You Go I’ll Go, Where You Stay I Stay

The initial point of starting this blog was to raise awareness and support for my summer project with CRU to Ocean City, Maryland. That trip changed my life in ways that I never thought possible, and now I am embarking on another summer project. The initial trip was to Los Angeles to do Inner City work, however I have recently received so saddening news that, that project has been closed down due to various circumstances. This pretty much rocks my world in many ways. I really believed that I had my heart set on LA and then this happens and I wonder if this was just my heart wanting to go on another summer project, and not necessarily listening to God.

From the moment I got involved in missions work I became so hungry for it. I’ve always loved helping others, and serving others. I did  three missions before I was even a believer. It’s always been something that I loved, and to think that God doesn’t want me to go on an organized one this summer is horrifying. It shouldn’t be, but it really is. I have this fear that if God calls me to stay that I will grow angry and bitter towards his ways. I have wrestled with this for some time now, and I have finally come to see that this place that I used to call home, and that I used to feel is where I’d go back to after college is no longer anything to me. I love it for what it gave me in my life, but it is not somewhere that I want to grow my family, and be in any longer. The place that I’m from is filled with fakes, and  lies that I don’t want to be apart of my life anymore. It took me leaving and seeing this beautiful and wondrous land that I now call home to see that the place I’m from is anything but “home”.

To think that God is calling me to stay is very scary, but I know that there must be a reason for His choosing in this. It makes me sad, and it even makes me a little angry, however if it’s where he’s calling me than I will adjust, and I will do as he says, cause we all know what happens when I choose to go against God. If you don’t I’ll spare you the details and just let you know that it sucks. So in this timeI just pray that I will know and understand that God is good and He knows, and wants what is best for me. Whether that means going on a summer project, or some other type of missions trip, or even staying in a place where I don’t at all feel welcomed anymore. I know that His ways are true, and His ways are good and for that I will rest in knowing that God has my life, and my heart in His hands, and he will send me where I need to be to enhance his kingdom.

 

But Ruth said, “Do not urge me to leave you or to return from following you. For where you go I will go, and where you stay I will stay.Your people shall be my people, and your God my God.”- Ruth 1:16

Dreams do Come True

In my life I have had two specific women come into my life and really lead me, and help me to grow and mature with God! Erin is one of those women. I met Erin when I was 15 in Kentucky while on a Mission’s trip. I can’t explain what it is about her, but she has truly changed my life for the greatest ways. Since knowing Erin we have been through extreme trials in our lives. This includes everything from death to divorce, but never did we lose sight of God and His plan for us and our lives! I can’t tell anyone how much I truly love this woman and how thankful I am that God put her into my life.

IMG_5222

Now in the last year and a half Erin met an amazing Man, and his name is Clint. Erin and Clint were so fun together, and for the first time in a long time I saw Erin happy and in a relationship that God had truly blessed. It was truly a beautiful thing for me to get to see. Now in getting Clint to come into her life also came five, yes I said five beautiful daughters! These girls are seriously amazing. Their names are Victoria, Hannah, Abigail, Carolina, and Laura Joy. They are some of the funnest, and exciting little girls that I’ve ever met! Did I mention that they’re all so beautiful, I mean seriously no group of siblings should ever be this adorable!

Now along with all of their beauty, I also got to take part in this family by hanging out with them, and making a lasting relationship. I’ve always been Erin’s “adopted daughter” so to see these five girls come in at first it definitely wasn’t easy but I knew it was exactly what God wanted for this amazing woman. So through all of that and a few other mishaps within about 10 months Erin and Clint were ENGAGED!! I was appointed as the honorary Maid of Honor, and got to be there for every aspect of Erin’s amazing day. I also got to strut my stuff with photography and help take photos for her wedding. I can’t say that I’ve ever felt more blessed. It was such a beautiful day, and I pray that Erin and Clint never forget the roads they had to walk to be together. Here’s a few of the photos from that amazing day!

Erin && Clint
10/25/12

IMG_7138
Erin and Clint’s programs were so amazing. They were unlike anyone I had ever seen before. They included the order of events of course, but they also included Erin and Clint’s testimonies! Like seriously what better to put in there then the story of God’s redemption on both of their lives, what could be better than that. They also included a few ministries that the two of them support, and how you can support those ministries as well. it was so beautiful and I just really loved them.

IMG_7107

One thing I’ve always loved about Erin is her classic beauty, and ability to shine in any room she walks into! She’s just gorgeous!

IMG_7086

Like I said I have some beautiful new sassy sisters!

IMG_7125

IMG_7149

I love the two photos above! They’re just really awesome to me. I love the way the sun is reflecting, and just awesome everything is with them. Erin also had a really awesome dress that was totally her, and the second I saw it I knew it was gonna look amazing on her! They’re both amazing people and the Son is totally shinning in this picture!

IMG_7156

One thing that Erin and Clint did during their wedding was a mini worship service. After Erin got down the aisle the band continued to play some of Erin and Clint’s favorite worship songs. It was so beautiful because Erin is such an expressive worshiper and to see her praising God for getting her down that aisle is just amazing. I really love her if you didn’t know!

IMG_7183 IMG_7211

IMG_7239

A common wedding ceremony that is trending right now is the sand pouring ceremony. It is seen commonly in blended families and to see all seven of these amazing people come together and blend this moment together was just amazing! It brought me to tears and to see Erin so happy knowing that she was welcomed into this family was so beautiful.

IMG_7252 IMG_7272

I pray for this couple often! And I know that with every inch of their being they are honoring the Lord in their ways. Erin and Clint you have a beautiful family and I couldn’t be more thankful for you and how you have welcomed me into your family. I love y’all so much and I cannot wait to see where life takes y’all and how amazing it will be. Always love God more than you could ever love each other, and never forget that love is the answer. It’s because of Love that you’re here today, and it’s because of Love why you found one another! I love you both so much and I know that with God as your goal you will never fail!

IMG_1902

Had to insert this lovely backside photo of me and my Mom E! Photo cred: Megan(Erin’s Sister)

Meet Maddie <3

Hello beautiful people I would like to meet a very amazing woman in my life! She has really helped me to develop and flourish as an RA and a growing and developing woman in the world. This is my beautiful coworker Maddie! I met Maddie for the first time in April when we all first got together as a staff, and met. I just remember thinking that she was an extremely reserved person, and that she would be fun, but nothing too crazy. Boy was I wrong! Maddie is easily one of the strongest, brightest, and fun people I’ve ever met in my life. She has an incredible story that I love hearing about more and more everyday. She i truly awesome, and she’s super photogenic, so she lets me express myself by taking pictures of her across our beautiful campus. This happens quite sporadically, and is never planned so yah never know what’s gonna happen! In short she’s just freaking amazing! So I hope you enjoy!

IMG_7450

Isn’t she so stinking cute! One thing that I really love about Maddie is the fact that I can just walk up to her and say, “Hey I wanna take some pictures, get dressed.” And without hesitation she does it! It’s so great!

IMG_7445

So this picture below is quite possibly my favorite ever! One thing that I love doing with photography is blurring, and in/out focus items. It’s probably one of the most beautiful parts of photography for me. People like to make fun of me for it, because I always do it with leaves, but hey I live in Virginia! Leaves are everywhere and they’re the easiest to do it with. So what does Maddie do being the greatest Model ever!! She picks up and does as I say, haha! Love her

IMG_7464

Another thing that is super awesome about My Maddiekins is her amazingly simple beauty! I mean she’s just beautiful period! Her eyes are just incredible, and it’s almost like they hold a story that is so amazing that someone can’t even think of the words on how to tell it yet. Like seriously blue eyes are always amazing but with Maddie there’s something different, and I love different! hehe!

IMG_7472

IMG_7485

Well this is Maddie, this totally isn’t all there is to her, because I could never capture that in a blog post, so you should just get to know her yourself!

I love you you Maddiekins, and I can’t wait for many more incredible adventures with you! You’re so stinking amazing, and seriously I’m so blessed to have you in my life that I can’t even get over it. You’re amazing, so stay that way, and know that I live you forever and for always!

I’ve been made FREE

So first of all I’m so sorry for keeping my wonderful followers waiting for over a month. The last month of my life has been hell to say the least. It’s pretty ridiculous how much has happened, but hey, I’m still living and breathing, and I’m just ready to get this semester over with.

Well since my last post I started a fast that has now carried into my everyday life and I’m really loving it! No makeup November really changed my life. It’s s crazy to think that taking a little thing out my life like makeup would make such a difference like it did. I am now able to just be me, and not cover up the natural beauty that I have. I am so thankful to finally have this security in myself that I can walk around and not cake makeup on so that others will accept me. But I’ve finally seen that I don’t need to do that, and for that I am truly thankful.

Now when it comes to my job as an RA the last month has really pushed me over the edge. Basically I had to do somethings that I wish I didn’t have to, and it ended in me losing a friend, and growing in ways that I never thought I would. I can’t say I didn’t think about leaving the res life world completely, but I really do have 4 amazing people on my staff and an an even more incredible boss that stood up for me, and showed me that I am very well equipped for what I do. They showed me that I can do this, and that though people will try and tear me down, they can only successfully do so if I allow them to. And to put it amazingly, my grandma didn’t raise no punk. I know how to stand up, and fend for myself, and in all honesty I have grown more in my first semester as being an RA then I ever thought I would.

On to another topic, because so much is seriously going on in my life right now that it’s insane. But my no dating fast is in full swing and I can’t lie I’ve been slacking. I have kind of pushed it to the backseat and not even acknowledged it unless my singleness is brought up. I have completely slacked off when it has come to my intentionality in all of it, and let’s be serious that needs to stop. I am hoping, and praying that as I go back home that I can find time to sit down, and really look at my life, and see the beauty in it, and appreciate it all. I can get things back together, and fully pursue this awesome plan that God has for me. So please hold me accountable, and up right!

Now as I originally started this blog was to tell you about the incredible summer project that I went on with CRU and I am so happy to say that I recently applied for the Los Angeles Summer in the City Summer Project. It took a great deal for me to decide to apply within the states. I say that because while I was in Ocean City I really felt God’s calling to go to Kazakhstan. I met so many students from that area this summer, and I can honestly say they changed my life, and gave me a great heart for that nation. I do pray that one day I get to go there, but I know that as of right now this is not the time. So I prayed for some time, and made some extreme pros and cons list for each project that I was considering, and I even went as far to email one of the directors for one of the projects and ask questions. To say I’m crazy about this is an understatement. But in all honesty my life was so radically changed on summer project that I can imagine not going back. So for that I’m really excited about the possibility of going to Los Angeles! It’s a totally different world than what I’m used to and I know God will use me regardless of where I go.

So that is a very quick overview of my shambly life thus far, check back tomorrow night for an even longer new exciting blog about one of my beautiful co-workers, and an amazing conference that I’m going to, and maybe even a few of my residents! Get excited!