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Phillip Prado

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February 8, 2013

Vices in the Life of an MNU Pioneer

February 8, 2013 | By | No Comments

1 Assignment! 2 Assignment! 3 Assignment! 4! 5 Assignment! 6 Assignment! 7 Assignment! MORE!

Then there’s a speech.

And an essay too!

I’m so overwhelmed!

My world is consumed!

I need to focus!

To get my work done!

Even if it’s boring!

And it’s really no fun!

I hope you enjoyed that poem right there!  I worked really hard on it. A whole three minutes maybe! But it is very fitting, don’t you think?  Homework is SOOOO consuming sometimes.  Yet we still need to focus and get it done.  I personally need to focus on my studies even more than I do now.  Procrastination is a weakness of mine, a vice!  If I think about it, there are a lot of “vices” that I have: my longboard, my bike, my lack of motivation to do homework, friends, the internet, and an unending list of other things that hold me back from reaching my full studious potential.  There really are a million things I can think of that I would rather do than my homework. No matter how much time I set aside to do my homework I still have to make it a point to get it done.

Don’t get me wrong, I don’t HATE homework.  Honestly, it’s not that bad.  I just have a lot of other things I would rather do.  So here is a little incite to the college life: the hardest part about homework in college isn’t that it is difficult, but that there is a lot more fun, cool, exciting things to do than to do work and be bored.  Just keep that in mind as you are going into college for your first time.  Try building the habit of doing homework and eliminate the vices that hold you back.

P.S. – So this week is SCOUT week, by the way! SO HELLO to all you SCOUTers that came out here to MNU to “check out university turf!”  We are all glad you guys could make it and we hope you see something special in MNU like the rest of us here already do!  Thank you guys for coming out and we hope you enjoyed your time here.

Phillip Prado

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January 31, 2013

Be Mindful — Have No Fear

January 31, 2013 | By | No Comments

hotcold

Is it just me, or has this week been pretty bipolar???  I feel like I just fell straight out of a Katy Perry Song! Just a few days ago it was so hot I was dying of heat in my dorm.  Now its so cold I can’t feel my face! (Did ya catch the Hot ‘N Cold reference?? hehe) But for real, this Kansas weather is so dangerously close to the Nebraskan weather I am oh so use to: unexpected rise and falls in temperature.  This whole week has just been up and down!  First with the weather, then with homework, and even with things to do outside of school!  One day I’m packed with homework  and that’s the time everyone wants to do something! Then the next day I have no homework and there is NOTHING to do :\.

I just can’t wait for things to get into a steady groove!!  These first two weeks are super shaky and I am just waiting for all of the dust to settle; for all of the schedules to become routine; for the days to just fall into place.  Then the other day, when I was thinking about this need for routine, something odd kind of struck me.  Now before I explain what crossed my mind I would like to elaborate upon a little fact about myself: I over think EVERYTHING!  I find the deepest meaning in every little detail of life, from a feeling about school routine to a dirty shoe on the side of the road.  Everything means something to me.  So take what I’m about to say however you want.  ANYWAY!  SO I was thinking the other day about the whole routine spiel I was just talking about, and it hit me!  That’s kind of how we, as Americans, generally prefer life: on a schedule; according to plan; on the right track.  Why is that?  Why are we so content with life being “ordinary”?

I once heard a quote from one of the best actor’s of all time, the late Heath Ledger.  In playing the character The Joker in the second Batman movie, Batman: The Dark Night, The Joker is talking to Harvey Dent in a hospital bed and he says this: “Nobody panics when things go according to plan, even if the plans are horrifying.”  This is sooo true!  If it’s expected people don’t usually have a problem with it.  It’s only in the times where something out of the ordinary happens that people lose their senses and panic.  When in actuality the only things that are extraordinary are the things that are out of the ordinary!  When we, as American citizens, as followers of Christ, settle for the ordinary then that’s what our lives will be like: ordinary; bland; plain.  So why do we settle?  Why do I want life to become simple?  That’s boring :\.

So that’s my challenge to all of you, and to myself:  accept the changes as opportunities to make something extraordinary.  Because if we settle for less then we will never grow, we will never thrive, we will never truly live.  Don’t be afraid to live!  Don’t be afraid to embrace something you are afraid of.  Don’t be afraid to take a leap of faith or to go on an adventure.  Life is full of things to be afraid of, and if you let them scare you, then don’t expect to live out loud.  So stop settling, stop blending in, start growing, and start speaking out; Be Mindful — Have no Fear…

 

Phillip Prado

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January 21, 2013

SECOND SEMESTER OF FRESHMAN YEAR!!

January 21, 2013 | By | No Comments

HEY GUYS!!  So yesterday I shared my feelings about the break, and, as promised, here is today’s blog on how I feel about the rest of the semester!!

So it’s been occurring to me lately that college is really stressful.  Getting finalized, paying bills, it’s all kind of overwhelming.  And that’s ok because I know it is all worth it.  But why is it worth it?  Is it worth it to, one day, be able to support your family and not have to struggle to pay the bills?  Is it worth it to one day have a career that SHOULD make you happy?  Or is it something else?  I personally think that these are good reasons but there is more to it than this.  There’s more to the stress and more the back breaking, time crunching, hair pulling, effort that goes into every little detail of our college kids’ lives.  Yeah learning to grow up and living life is a part of this but is that what is most important?  It’s not the money you make or the title you have.  And the college experience or the fact that you are “getting away” shouldn’t be valid reasons to take your life and throw it in an emotional blender know as college preparation.  Because this, honestly, sucks.  Preparing for college and getting everything organized can be a huge pain in the butt.  But the path you chose makes it worth it.  Not the destination but the journey.  Not the atmosphere but what you do with it.  Everyday God gives us opportunities to change the life of people in many ways we never even think of.  We just over look it all.  And those opportunities, those solitary moments in time that fall upon us and appear as riddles, drama, problems are actually blessings from God.  Beautiful things happen everyday out of the saddest, most hurtful things you could imagine.  And God asks us to join Him in his walk in making those beautiful things happen.

SO this semester I will try to look at everything as an opportunity to make something beautiful: homework, friends, fights, relationships, anything I can think of.  Things all the way from ordering your food at McDonald’s, to meeting a deadline (which I have been pretty bad at myself lately), and on down the list are all opportunities given to us to show how beautiful life can be.  And to me, college is a way to make those opportunities happen now, and in the future.

I am really looking forward to this semester.  I know I will not always succeed in all i set out to do but failing is a part of making life happen.  So as long as I keep my chin high and my hopes higher I know everything will be ok.  It’s time for me to stop focusing on what’s wrong, and  to focus on what’s beautiful.  Because in the end what’s wrong doesn’t really matter, and what’s beautiful will be what makes your life worth living.

Happy spring semester to all you Pioneers!!! :)

Phillip Prado

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January 20, 2013

BREAK!!

January 20, 2013 | By | No Comments

HEY GUYS!!!  So, first off, this break has been crazy! And since my computer has been incapacitated for some time now I have not been able to keep anyone updated.  But now that this week everything was fixed and I am finally within the range of a successful Wi-Fi connection I can recap my break!  So here goes!!!!

Let’s start with a list of the things I did this break:

1. Work

2. Work

3. Work more

4. Work even more

K done!

Just Kidding! BUT it sure felt like that was the case!  Working 9 or 10 hour days at a daycare everyday takes its toll on a guy.  This was not a break for me!  I was more tired over break than I was ever during school.  That made me miss MNU even more.  This place is my home now, and going back to live with my family was weird.  I mean readjusting is kinda hard.  I missed the fellowship, the campus, the food, the professors, and even the homework!  Call me crazy but everything about MNU feels like home now.

I mean I had fun over break, don’t get me wrong.  It was good to see my family and the friends back home, going on endless coffee shop adventures and out eating out.  I enjoyed the holiday season and the snow in Nebraska was fun while it lasted, but it’s not the same as it use to be.  It was good to have a change of scenery coming to MNU the first time and I’m still not even close to being sick of it, but I have had enough of my hometown.  MNU is the next step in my life and I am more than ready to keep on with this step and to stop looking back.  I came and visited friends in Olathe over break! I couldn’t wait all 5 or 6 weeks, or however long it was (all I know is that it felt too long).

Overall it was a good break!  I loved it even though I was busy working all the time!  But it is good to be back at MNU.  This is now my home and I love every part of it!

So HELLO to all of you Pioneers! I have missed you all!

And to all of you upcoming freshman next year: I hope you love this place as much as I do!  You won’t want to leave once you call this place your home.

That’s a small recap of my break and tomorrow I will update on what I am looking forward to for the rest of the year so stay tuned!!

Life At The Daycare!

 

Out to eat with my friend Ty Hall

 

One of my many coffee shop endeavors to Scooters

 

Snow Storm in Nebraska

 

Phillip Prado

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December 13, 2012

People

December 13, 2012 | By | No Comments

 

HEY GUYS!!! So this is the last MNU Blog I will post before the end of the semester :(.  But hey, its ok!! I’m not quite done yet AND we will all post a few times over break!  But as of now I have four finals down and only ONE more to go.  Finally I’m almost done!  This week has been something else, let me tell you.  So first of all, I have had five finals to get through and that has been CRAZY!  Studying was definitely NOT my focal point this week and I’m a little more unprepared than I would have liked to be.  So in this lesson of mixed priorities, there is a word of advice I have learned that I would like to give to any upcoming freshman: Make the best of your study time, no matter how easy the class is.  Trust me!  

This next semester is gonna be something else though.  I mean I know this will sound weird but I am really beginning to enjoy doing homework! What is wrong with me!?!  I have no idea!  I guess just the idea that I am preparing for the rest of my life has been enough motivation for me.  This isn’t high school anymore, this isn’t just something you have to try to get through, this is what we are doing to train us for the rest of our lives.  And this training is brutal!  SOOO many distractions and things are always there. This is the time of our lives we are taking to find ourselves and to really see who you are going to be for the rest of your life and that is really important to me.  I really do want to be prepared for my future: for my career, my family, and just for anything the world throws my way.  I really need to buckle down and focus in if I want to get this done right.

But on that note there’s another piece of advice that I myself am trying to filter through too:  Live a little.  This doesn’t mean party and go out and get crazy!  Just don’t be afraid to make relationships, ya know?  When you hear people talking about college what do they say?  They don’t talk about how great finals were, or how important the class work was to them.  I mean YEAH that’s important but people talk about the fun times the had, the love they shared, the friends they made, and the people that made a difference in their lives.  There was a reason that in the beginning God said “It is not good for man to be alone.”  We are built to be together, to be in fellowship, and just to love one another.  So no matter how important school is, no matter what you’re going though, just don’t forget to love people.  Because in the end, the people you shared your life with are going to be the most important things to you.  So whether you’re in high school, college, or working full time, don’t hold yourself back from the thing we were designed to surround ourselves with: people.  You can’t look back on a life full of love, happiness, and joy and feel regret.  God made us to be together.  So GO and BE TOGETHER!  We need to stop taking each other for granted and cherish our time with one another.  That time spent with people really is what makes everything worth it.  So study, laugh, have fun, just please don’t forget the one thing that is most important to every human being whether they want to admit it or not: To Love People.

Phillip Prado

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November 29, 2012

THE SICKNESS!!

November 29, 2012 | By | No Comments

It’s that time of year isn’t it?  The moment the weather begins to get colder, the coughing and stuffy noses begin to increase rapidly.  Thats right, the sickness is coming back and the cold season is here, as expected.  Many of us here at MNU have fallen victim to this evil health factor. I being one of them.

This has been enough of a stressful week already, and now this!?  The aches and the pains, the sneezing and the sniffling, the coughing and the hacking, it’s all part of the endless circle of reasons we continually have to struggle to just get by.  With finals just around the corner, and winter break immediately after that (WOO), our health is the last thing we need to be worrying about right now.  We should be studying, doing homework, and psyching ourselves up for this big tests.  HA who am I kidding?  We would be procrastinating, hanging out with friends, and just simply being college students.  Most of us can’t even focus on anything but winter break!  But NOO! No we are stuck in bed, too achey to do anything, too sick to be around people for an extended period of time.  These are the times when you say to yourself life sucks sometimes

But amidst all of the illness and all of the sorrow there is hope!  There is a light that shines in this tunnel of sore throats and swollen sinus cavities!  There is good in every negative and the good is plain to see once you look.  Before we were all sick zombies we lived life as aimless procrastinators: Kings and Queens of wasting time and goofing off!  We were lazy without cause, did stupid things for no reason, and there was simply no excuse.  So remember you’re not alone friends! I am with you, and many others like myself.  Just keep your heads up and look at the bright side:  at least now you have a legitimate reason not to do your homework! ;)

 

 

 

And this is one of my favorite poems by Shel Silverstein that I added just for fun:

Phillip Prado

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November 23, 2012

There’s Got To Be More To It.

November 23, 2012 | By | No Comments

There’s christmas lights up, the air is cold, the stores are beginning to supply their holiday sales; the Christmas season is almost here.  Now that Thanksgiving is officially over the winter spirit is beginning to kick in, don’t you think? There’s talk of presents and family gatherings; there’s Christmas music filling all of the department stores and mall outlets; you can almost feel the excitement.  What is it that makes Christmas stand out so much in the hearts of humans around America?  Is it Saint Nicholas and his little elves?  Is it the decorated pine trees or the vibrant wreaths?  Or is there something more to this time of the year?

As you know, it is called CHRISTmas for a reason.  This is the time of the year that we celebrate the birth of Christ the messiah, our savior, our father, our friend: Jesus.   But yet those of us who do not accept Him into their lives still feel the joy of this time of the year.  Why is that?  Why is it that almost nobody can escape feeling of the holiday spirit whether they like it or not?  The answer is simple:  there is no one on this earth that can escape the love of other people when it is as strong as it is this time of the year.  The love humans share for one another is inescapable, and all things good and loving can be traced back to God.  Everything good comes from the father.  So thinking in that sense it is safe to say that that’s why Christmas is so special to people:  it’s the one time of the year when we can all feel Christ’s love through one another.  But why can’t we, as Christians, do this all year ‘round?  How come we can’t share this spirit every day?

That’s our job:  to show the love of Christ inside and outside of CHRISTmas.  This is the time of year when we get a glimpse of real happiness and real love.  So I urge you to make that happiness about something other than just getting, and even giving, material things.  Don’t focus on this that will fade in time, but store your treasure in heaven, as stated in Matthew 6.  Jesus is your best friend, and He loves you so much that he died for you.  Yeah, yeah, I know hearing that Jesus died for you can be cliche at times, but it never loses its truth no matter how much it loses its sting.  No matter how many times we hear it, we need to resist hardening our hearts to it. This is the time of year we live, laugh, and love.  But what will you live for, laugh at, and what will you love?  I pray for everyone reading this to just keep Christ the focus of their lives, to live for Him, laugh with Him, and just simply love Him.  And if He isn’t the focus yet that He would become the absolute center of your lives. Just remember these few things:  There are many people in this world that love you;  God loves you, your friends and family love you, and even I love you. :)  It’s so easily to lose site of the most important things in a time of consumerism like Christmas.  So go and live like you are loved, because that my friends is the most important thing in the world.  Not getting presents

 

You are loved….

 

 

Phillip Prado

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November 16, 2012

God Loves Us All: Even The Children

November 16, 2012 | By | No Comments

Have you ever worked with children?  Do you have little brothers or sisters, have you babysat, or are you employed where you work with children?  If any of those are true than you know how rough kids can be.  All three of those are true for me.  I have three little sisters, I’ve babysat many times before, and I have worked at a daycare/preschool for almost two years now.  After working with children so much, I’ve gained a few life lessons that will probably stick with me forever.

I’ve learned that children, sometimes, just need to be alone.  I’ve seen countless times when a child has gotten into trouble and all they needed to do was just go and be by themselves but a teacher would try to continually confront the child about the situation.  All they need sometime is just to be by themselves.  I feel like that is the same for us.  We have all of these problems in our lives and we can’t just let go.  We have to confront it and make sure its all better but we sometimes we need to step back, relax, and let things go.  Or sometimes we are in a situation we can’t really handle and we need to just go be alone ourselves.  We need that alone time to let things go, relax, and just ask God to help us out.

Another thing I’ve learned is that working at a preschool is tiring.  Kids don’t listen 99.9% of the time, they always want to do there own thing, they think they know whats best for themselves, and they constantly hurt one another in striving to get what they want for themselves.  Now what if I took the word “kids” out of the beginning of that last sentence and replaced it with “people”?  It makes just as much sense half of the time doesn’t it?  There is not a huge difference between adults and children.  We think we can do everything ourselves, that we know whats best, but then God looks at us and tells us otherwise and we still don’t listen.  How can we possibly know whats best for us?  A lot of Christians know that we don’t know what’s best for us, yet we continually to neglect living like that.  We need to learn to let go and trust in God.

The most important thing I would say that I learned after working with kids is that sometimes, it can feel hard to love them.  I KNOW that sounds terrible but sometimes children can be really mean, they don’t listen, and they don’t want a thing to do with you.  I do love every one of the children I work with, don’t get me wrong, but sometimes the just get into so much trouble it’s crazy!  Then we have to discipline them, and then we have to tell their parents, and then we have to keep them from doing it again and it’s a never ending cycle of endless effort. This is the SAME thing we do with God.  We are childish sometimes.  We continually turn away from God and continually fall short.  Do you think God thinks that’s very fun?  Do you think He has fun constantly calling out to us and constantly seeing us get hurt or hurting one another?  It’s not, and yet He loves us with all of His heart.  There is no end to God’s love.  Working as a teacher has really opened my eyes to that.  God really does love us ALL!!  And that’s really been on my heart lately.

Working with children has definitely pulled me closer to God.  I can now see a SLIGHT glimpse of how God sees us sometimes (but of course I still can’t comprehend His thoughts or His love).  Even though I go home exhausted most every day, in the end it is worth it.  I get to see innocence at it’s finest, and it get to love that and allow it to be a part of my own life.

 

(sorry there’s no pictures, it’s illegal for me to have pictures of children from any public daycare/preschool service for anything outside of the daycare/preschool)

Phillip Prado

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November 9, 2012

God Loves Us All: Even the Discouraged

November 9, 2012 | By | No Comments

Discouragement:

  1. A loss of confidence or enthusiasm; despiritedness
  2. An attempt to prevent something by showing disapproval or creating difficulties; deterrent

 

Why do we deal with discouragement so much?  Why does there always have to be something in the way?  Why does life have to be so hard?  These are questions I hear people ask every day.  There’s so many things in life that discourage us, as humans, that we can’t seem to avoid: death, failure, loss of friends, an abrupt change in plans.  Why does it seem that after we just get out of a bad time, and we finally experience peace, something has to throw us out of our happiness and into another trial?

I have noticed that in college, every day has a new trial.  Whether a paper is do, or you have a million things that need to get done, or you have to meet with your advisor, or work, or all of the above and a million more things.  My point is that there are a million things in this world that constantly bring us down.  Yet we still have to have faith as Christians that we can get through this.

In my Old Testament class we are going over the book of Job.  If anyone in history had an excuse to be discouraged it was Job.  In just the first few chapters of the book, Job loses everything: his family, his possessions, his health, he even loses his sense of connection with God.  Yet no matter what happened, he NEVER once curses God.  Even after his wife tries convincing him to curse God Job resists.  In chapter 2 verse 10 Job says “shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?”  Job is accepting God, no matter what happens.  That’s so amazing to thing that even through his darkest times, Job was in love with the one and only God of the universe.  And in the New Testament, James says to “consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance” (James 1:2-3).  Not only are we to loved God in trials and discouragement, but we are to be joyful in them.  Why?  Because that is when we show God we love Him the most!

No matter what you’re going through, no matter how much you lose your confidence or enthusiasm, God is definitely something to be enthusiastic about.  So whether you have a series assignment due, you have to organize an event, your job is keeping you on your toes and you just don’t have the time to relax, or you just have your own personal trials to face, just remember it will be ok! Jesus says that “..in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble.  But take heart!  For I have overcome this world!” (John 16:33).  Jesus is more than this world, and He loves you with all of His heart.  No it is up to you to trust Him, even when you find trusting Him to be the hardest thing to do.

Phillip Prado

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November 1, 2012

God Loves Us All: Even The Goofballs

November 1, 2012 | By | One Comment

HEY GUYS!!! This has been another week to remember for me.  Lets start off with Westboro Baptist Church.  I don’t know if you are familiar with them, and if you’re not then you should look them up, but I’m not a huge fan of their theology or their actions.  They picket a lot of different places for a lot of different reasons with some pretty hateful signs that I would rather not write and it just upsets me, you know?  So a couple of friends and I decided to go to where they were picketing, the Red Hot Chili Peppers concert at the Spring Center, and do a little picketing ourselves.  Now we didn’t picket WBC, or really picket at all.  We just made signs that said things like “God Loves You” and “There’s No Room for Hate in God’s Love,” went to where WBC was, and decided to tell people that God loves them.  I’m sure people are sick of being told they are hated for sinning.  No one can feel God’s love or is going to be reached if all they are being told is that He hates them.  We just wanted to tell them that He DOES love them!  God loves EVERY sinner and EVERY saint.  We just wanted to actually reach people and actually show them that God not only loves them, but he DIED for them.  We did not want to make WBC mad or to tell them they were wrong, just to get in the hate that was being spread and show love.

We are all just 18 years old or so and we were doing the best we could to show people God’s love.  Just cause we are teens and college students doesn’t mean we can’t make a difference.  This is just a small example of how we, as Christians, can really spread love through this world.  In Matthew 28:19-20 Jesus tells us to “go make disciples of all nations.”  And not only that but that He “[is] with [us] always, to the very end of the age.”  Now why would a God that hates us be with us to the end of the age?  He calls us to go make disciple but in that we have to follow the two greatest commandments stated in Matthew 22:37-40: To love God and to love others.  Thats what our goal in life should be: to love! This just really hit me this weak.  We are Christ’s disciples, and it is up to us to show the world His love.

And on a lighter matter, yesterday was Halloween!  I may not have dressed up but some people did.  Some people went ALL out here at MNU.  Two PERFECT examples are Nathan Traxler and Ethan Grimes, both of which are Sophomores (Ethan is on the left and Nathan is on the right in the pictures below).  Nathan set out to be an elderly woman and thats exactly what he did.  He dressed up and acted like an elderly woman: with the dress, and the hair, and all of the other elderly parts an old woman would have (if you know what I mean).  Now a few weeks ago, at the beginning of the year, during one of MNU’s famous events, Ethan managed to split his forehead open all the way to the skull on a HUGE water slide outside of the Lanbarger Dorms when another student accidentally kneed him in the face. Ethan used that to his advantage this year on Halloween and went as Harry Potter with the scar and all.  I laughed soooooo hard when I saw these two guys walking together in Campus Center.  This is definitely a solid image of what MNU students really stand for.  Ok maybe not EXACTLY but it does represent a good portion of us students. :P

So those are the main highlights of my week.  There’s so many other things going on here on Campus that make life really exciting here.  And I’ve also been hearing of a lot of things going on over there at MNU Europe that are super exciting (Check out Cherith’s blog page here on MNU Blogs to hear more about that).  It’s just weeks like this, even though I’m stressed and tired all the time because I have an insane amount of homework, that really make me proud to be a Pioneer.  This is a place to be serious for God and to go out and to spread His love, but it’s also a place to just have fun, be goofy, make friends, and fellowship together.  MNU in both America and in Europe are schools full of joy and love.  This isn’t something you see everyday and I know I’m not the only one who sees that.  This school is something to be proud of.