two little crazies who I plan to see this weekend.
Following God's lead across countries and across the street
30 Aug 2011 4 Comments
two little crazies who I plan to see this weekend.
29 Aug 2011 3 Comments
I love living here. Here in the city, yes, but also here in my room. Here on this floor. Here in the room that I share with my roommate; my little bed and her tall bed on opposite sides of the room, blue bedspeads tucked neatly over our college-issued mattresses.
Here where one thin wall on each side separates us from friends. Here when we prop our door open almost all the time, opening the world of the hallway to the world of our room. Here where we go next door to ask a question and end up staying for an hour and a half, lounging on beds and couches and talking and laughing about almost anything. Here where the scent of brownies cooking in the floor’s kitchen floats down the hallway, and the walls in the hall are covered with verses, post-it note messages from one girl to another, and pictures of the girls living here.
Here where help with homework is only as far as the end of the hall, where I sit on the floor and listen to girls discuss music theory as I do my math problems. Because I didn’t need help as much as I just wanted to sit with people. Here where I say, thanks for the help, and she grins and says, good night honey.
Here where we live together and learn together and learn to grow together.
28 Aug 2011 3 Comments
This morning, for the first time in almost six months, I attended a Spanish-speaking church. I went with a group of Spanish-speakers from Moody, and I had a wonderful time getting to know my fellow students more, as well as being immersed in Mexican culture again.
27 Aug 2011 Leave a Comment
Aaron Shust played here at Moody last night; a wonderful, late-night service that included praise and worship, prayer in small groups, and a brief talk.
At one point during the concert, as multi-colored lights glowed softly in the background, the main speaker bowed his head and thanked God for how extroverted He is. Sitting in the audience with my chin resting on my pulled-up knees, the speakers’ words caught my attention.
We throw around terms like, “introverted” and “extroverted” all the time, sometimes without even knowing what they mean. Never before had I heard God described as an extrovert, but as the speaker continued, I began to realize that not only is God an extrovert; He’s the best extrovert.
He always pursues people, relentlessly showing us His love and mercy. He does not need to “take a break” from other people, or slip a nap in between outside activities. He never tires of loving us, listening to us, or supporting us. He will never let us down, or ask for a rain check because He’s just too wiped out from everything He’s got going on. God is better than us at listening, better than us at loving, better than us at being a friend, and better than us at forgiving. In fact, He’s so much better than us that we cannot even comprehend how wonderful He really is.
And yet, even with all this wonderful, unimaginable majesty, we can still have a personal, one-on-one relationship with Him.
25 Aug 2011 Leave a Comment
Yes, as a couple of you guessed, the location of this Say Where is Teotihuacan, Mexico!
This puts the scores at:
Auntie Sarah: 11
Great work, everyone!
24 Aug 2011 3 Comments
• It will be sad when your family leaves. Regardless of how close they live, or how many times you will rope them into bringing you random necessities that you left at home.
• On the first day of orientation, everyone is just getting to know everyone. This puts every single new student on an equal playing field, resulting in scads of fresh, young people who are eager to learn your name, where you’re from, and your major. Smile, answer their questions, and try your best to remember their name for the next time they accost you in the elevator.
• Regardless of how many options there are in the dining hall, there will soon come a meal where you don’t want any of it. Eat something anyway. Even if it’s an exact replica of the sandwich you had for lunch six hours before.
• After you have gotten your food, subtley glance around the dining room and surmise the scene while you fill your water cup. Don’t subtley glance for too long, or your water will overflow and the gentleman from dishcrew who happens to be stacking clean cups next to you will look at you in a rather concerned manner.
• Upperclassmen who make a point of hanging out with new students are a gift from God Himself. They tend to be kind, helpful, able to answer silly questions with obvious answers that you should have figured out yourself, and will most likely quickly become your friends. Don’t take them for granted.
• Ultimate frisbee at the beach with your brother floor is a great experience. Some guys and more…athletic than others, and they always welcome any sisters who want to join the game. However, when diving onto the sand to catch a goal, be aware of any nearby players who might accidentally crush your pinky toe with their knee.
• The second shower from the left sometimes sprays really, really hot water while you are soaping up. So does the shower on the far right. Try not to scald yourself or any parts of your body that happen to be under the shower spray.
• Going to Target is always a good thing. Amen.
• If your RA’s door is open, you may go in and sit on her couch and discuss whatever you desire to speak about. She might even give you a peanut butter granola bar. The whole experience will be very enjoyable.
• Sitting in the lounge on your floor is always an entertaining experience. At 12:15am it will be entertaining because you are laying on the couch and listening to your thoughts. At 8pm it will be entertaining because there are twelve ladies sitting gathered on the couches, and odds are in your favor that at least one of them has something witty or thought-provoking to say at any given point.
• The student book sale is a cross between an outdoor market and a moshpit. The entire experience of hunting down, finding, and haggling for your books is very satisfying, especially if you already have your books and you are actually on the hunt for someone else’s books.
• All of the stories, legends, and cliches that you have heard about your school are probably true.
• Starting at a low point when your loved ones drive off into the horizon, your time at school will become better and better with every passing day. This will last at least one week, and possibly longer. Stay tuned for more details as to when the experience plateaus.
• Study Hard. Make good choices. Have fun.
24 Aug 2011 1 Comment
What with me doing that thing wherein I go to college, Say Where has slipped below number five on my List Of Things To Do At Any Given Moment. Actually, it’s probably farther down than five…
Regardless, I have a given moment right now, and it is encumbent on me to tell you that the whereabouts of this picture:
will soon be revealed! Thus, if you have not already, I strongly advise you to guess now, before the location and all guesses are revealed!
Also: check back later for another famed Bullet Point Post!
22 Aug 2011 7 Comments
I was composing this post in my head, as I waited for WordPress to load, and instead of saying, “I went to Target”, in my head it came out “I visited the motherland”. The latter, of course, sounds unbelievably more interesting, with the added intrigue of implying that I am a product of Target.
However, as much as I might like to treat trips to Target as a trip to the place of my origins, I am no more a product of Target than I am a waffle.
All that to say, I went to Target. Today. After dinner. Since I broke my toe on Saturday, I have been lying low a bit, elevating the offending digit and restricting my hobbling to on-campus errands. But it’s Monday night, my first day of classes resulted in very light homework, and I was ready for an outing.
And so it was that I shuffled off campus, tagging along with my wonderful RA, on our way to Target, land of magical goodness.
The train was hot and stuffy, and Moody students meandered literally every aisle of the great store, but Target withstood the MBI bombardment with class and style, as it always does.
Suffering from an overdose of two-story fantastic, I had to pause and regain my balance in the pen and marker aisle, as I mulled over exactly which colored pens I needed. The markers were a no-brainer (CRAYOLA. Fine tip. 8-pack.) And Target was sold out of sticky tack, which did not come as a shock to me, since every single student at this school is using the blue putty to affix posters, photos, and small mammals to their wall.
Except not really small mammals, or mammals of any size, for that matter.
Our purchases complete, we made our way out of that great store and back into the underworld that is the Chicago subway. We laughed and talked and swung our red and white shopping bags happily in the receding light as we made our way back to campus.
Trip to the motherland or not, it was a lovely outing.
21 Aug 2011 1 Comment
Classes here at Moody Bible Institute start tomorrow, and the last of the returning students were trickling in until late this evening. The plaza, which comprises the central gathering point of the campus was buzzing this afternoon with students and faculty. Dinner was served buffet-style, and we ate sitting in little groups around the plaza. Yells of excitement and bursts of activity punctuated the happy buzz, as friends were reunited after a summer of separation.
After dinner had been cleaned up, the band situated at one end of the plaza picked up their instruments and the beginning strands of a popular praise song filled the area. The students scattered across the lawn began to move forward, pressing towards the stage until they made one large group of students, gathered together to worship the Lord.
Several passionate worship songs were sung, and then it was announced that we were about to do something Moody had never done before. The gathered hundreds of students were going to participate in a prayer walk around the perimeter of the campus. And the crowd moved. Students grouped together in twos and threes poured out of the plaza, one steady stream of young people striving to serve and glorify God.
Each group clutched a prayer sheet, detailing praises and thanksgivings, needs and supplications in various areas of the school. Praise God for donors. Praise God for the radio ministry. Ask God for wisdom for the staff and faculty. And God for strength for the students. Praise. Thank. Ask. Thank.
The groups plodded steadily around the school, one solid stream of praying people. Different voices rang out within each group as one student after another took a turn thanking God for what He had done, and asking Him in faith for what He will do.
The circuit complete, the students slowly returned to the plaza, where they once again praised God through song for who He is and what He has done. For how much He loves us and how much we need Him.
Classes start tomorrow, and this campus has been covered in prayer.
20 Aug 2011 4 Comments
Whether it started gradually, or all of a sudden, I don’t know, but I recently began noticing little things. Not just any little things, either; I notice those all the time, and so do you. No, these are beautiful little things. A facial expression slipped in between exclamations in a conversation that I’m a part of. A tiny detail in a room that I have been in countless times before, but somehow never noticed. Something so ordinary, and yet so striking that I can’t help but marvel at it.
Riding home from Michigan last week, my eyes slide unfocused over trees and pavement and passing cars and then more trees. And then suddenly, the trees drop away and are replaced by a clearing of green grass and, in the distance, endless fields of crops. Two white houses and a barn are propped neatly along one side of the clearing. A long, grassy-green yard stretches out from both houses. I see all this, and more, but it’s the slide that captures my attention.
It’s a children’s slide, taller than a small child and made of plastic. The slide is red and the ladder is blue, and in the seconds that pass before the slide and its yard and house are out of view, I am transfixed. The sun streams through the clouds overhead, and the slide sits small, bright, and resolute in the middle of the lush green yard. It wasn’t a fancy slide; it wasn’t even the first blue and red slide children’s slide I ever saw, but seeing it sitting so alone and remarkable in that rolling green yard caught me off guard with its accidental beauty.
I liked seeing that slide. I like remembering what the scene looked like, and I like painting the picture afresh, this time in words. I’m certain that there are more beautiful little things out there, and I’m positive that I miss them all the time. But I want to see them. I want my eyes to be open to seeing what is beautiful in what I do everyday, or what you see each evening, or what she says every morning.
I know beauty is there, and I want to see it.