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Joey Alligier

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January 30, 2013

Tis the Seasons

January 30, 2013 | By | No Comments

They say a lot can change in a short amount of time when it comes to Kansas weather. Having lived here for all 19.2 years of my life I can attest to this being the truth. However, the past 3 days have BLOWN MY MIND. 2 days ago the weather was around 66, beautifully sunny, and all around glorious! I wore shorts to class, ran back from the gym, and didn’t wear a jacket to work. Yesterday started out nice, I mean, I LOVE the rain! Then it started to get REAL cold while still raining, NO THANKS. Then I woke up this morning and it literally shocked me when I looked outside. The ground was covered and it was still coming down. The wind is piercing and the snow keeps getting in my shoes. So, here at MNU we have experienced about all the seasons in the past 3 days.

In my devotion this morning I stumbled upon the verse Deuteronomy 32:2. It says, “Let my teaching fall on you like rain; let my speech settle like dew. Let my words fall like rain on tender grass, like gentle showers on young plants.”

It’s as if God has been showing me something (as if He really ever stops). As I am going through something it’s perfect that some days can be so amazing, shorts worthy, seemingly perfect. But when we open ourselves up to God and the help He offers it may not look as pretty as our humanistic imagination presents perfection, but what comes from the renewal of rain and the flooding of the Holy Spirit taking over our lives is unmatched by anything in this life. Then when God tries to use dew or a thunderstorm with no avail at obtaining our attention, he sorts to something more extreme like snow. I guess this may be my mind just being my mind and thinking kind of peculiar, but I believe the Lord does speak through nature and he is always calling us to learn more and disruptive our lives to experience him more. Let His cleansing, loving, powerful “rain” empower you.

Keep on and keep God,
Joey Alligier

Person-Rain1

Joey Alligier

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January 19, 2013

BUH-RAY-KEH

January 19, 2013 | By | No Comments

I have had quite the 5 weeks! Ups, downs, and lots of God! He is amazing no matter what!

Check out what my break looked like here!
What is this Break you Speak of?

I am excited for what God is doing. Excited and hopefully ready!

Keep on and keep God!
Joey

Joey Alligier

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January 18, 2013

The Journey that is Paving the Rest

January 18, 2013 | By | No Comments

It’s hard to believe that barely over a month ago God opened the door of possibility for myself to join 9 amazing people on a journey to change the lives of many Haitian people in Cascade Pichon. Little did I know, none of us would come back the same.

Here is the video that started it all!
Faith that Moves Mountains

The response to this video was out of this world and exceeded EVERY expectation. The power of God was proven without a doubt. His glory shone through the people He has placed around me. You could tell that they truly desired God’s will! I received donations from friends and people that I didn’t really know too well. This all helped me pay for shots and actually support others on the trip! The craziest God moment was when my church congregation back home donated $1,300 and the church itself allocated a $700 missions fund, just to me. Once again I say, the response exceeded every preconception and expectation in giving support, monetarily, and spiritually. I had 14 days to raise the money and it happened in 5.  Our God is GOOD; beyond belief!

So the journey takes another step and starts to get real. Words really cannot describe what happened there and how it affected me and what I desire now. I witnessed many different types of people and situations encompassed within this one country. I met amazing people and amazing goals were set, all while inside the hand of God!

Here’s a brief review of the journey that left an impact.
Lives Changed from Changing Lives

What’s the next step?  How do we continue the reach to the broken? Cascade Pichon is in need of a school. So, what do 9 spirit led, passionate young adults do? We decide to take on a $100,000 project; God willing. The details are currently fuzzy, but we are all pretty dead set on making this happen! Feel free to ask questions revolving the topic! There will definitely be more news, events to come about events and other opportunities!

The journey that was had in Haiti has left 10 Americans and numerous Haitian lives impacted forever. The opportunity presented, the passion revealed, and the path appearing. The 9 days residing in this poor, struggling, broken country has set the standard. It truly is the journey that is paving the rest of this year, the visits to Haiti, and even futures.

Degaje
(Do the best you can with what you have)

Keep on and keep God,
Joey

 

Joey Alligier

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November 30, 2012

That’s Why We’re Friends!

November 30, 2012 | By | No Comments

This, ladies and gentlemen, is the first installment of a revolutionary idea called “That’s Why We’re Friends.” This will be an inside look of, what I feel, defines MNU: Community.

I am a Freshman in Lanpher. Without going into too much graphic detail, let’s just say it can get CRAZY! I mean come on, we’re dudes from all over the place, living under one roof, what’d you expect?

The picture above is my room which I share with my DAWG Josh Woodward. Josh looks like the complete opposite of me, but only until you put us in the same room and especially compare our senses of humor.

Today we’re going to take a deeper look into what makes a hall, a hall. It’s kind of like the church in how it it less dependent on the structure, even though it is very nice mind you, and focuses more on who resides there.  There are around 25 guys on each hall. This gives way for growth, discussions and lots of diversity.

The diversity lies in where we come from, the personalities we have all developed and are now clashing. Some transitions go smoothly and others are like using your car key to open your garage or maybe a safe. But when it’s good, it’s awesome. You find people who, like Josh and I, who starting bonding on day one. We went to Se7en E11even bought some Hot Pockets, bananas, and milk to make cookie milk shakes with some meal-shake-yummy-formula I brought from home. Needless to say, that’s a bond never to be broken!

The discussions are a very special thing! They can be had between people whose faith is sound and thus creates growth or with people who are hurting, lost, and confused. I almost prefer the latter; it creates bonds that I believe God set forth to happen. Take for example a sonic trip. I took a guy on the hall who was relatively opposed to Campus Center and didn’t have a car. My view on this young man was once somewhat negative, ticked me off a bit, and hurt my heart to see him make the choices he was. He then blew all of that away. With a tiny piece of his past, his choices, his struggle. I obtained a view on a once God filled-fearing-and-praising young man whose priorities got mixed up. This made my heart smile because I began to see a need in him and a God who fit perfectly.

The growth is the best part. From the butting heads to the deep theological discussion it is produced. Accountability is established, encouragement is given, and love is displayed. For all this to happen a helpful verse is Proverbs 28:1, “The wicked flee though no one pursues, but the righteous are as BOLD as a lion.” I believe to make community work you have to be bold. That’s where growth begins. This is my hall. Not the white cement walls, but the people that reside within them and the talks that bring those same people together.

From the sitting and planning out starting a revolutionary idea to having conversations about some weird, but bonding topics, I would not trade the community I have. It is molding me into someone who realizes more than he did before. It’s all a part of God’s plan. I pray that you would seek community around you, because community is the backbone of any meant-to-be-broken-yet-redeemed individual.

Keep on and keep God,
Joey

Joey Alligier

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November 13, 2012

Breathe….

November 13, 2012 | By | No Comments

I know life is crazy for me! Ups, downs, and every other possible direction! Sometimes, you just have to sit back and take in what God has to offer. When life gets busy and school gets psychotic, and everything becomes a blur, just remember to BREATHE. I mean look at the top picture, how does that not create awe? Everything is perfectly designed by God, in this picture and within us. Make time for Him and find Him in every facet of life! You just have to empty your hands so He can fill them. Even when you do this, Satan tries to make you worry and forget why you’ve trusted God for so long. When that happens just be like

After all, the dude has to FLEE at the sound of His GREAT name :) Don’t forget how you go this far!

Keep on and keep God my friends,
Joey

Joey Alligier

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November 5, 2012

What’s Your Puzzle Piece?

November 5, 2012 | By | No Comments

Connecting with God. How do you define it? Some say quiet time, talking with others, finding Him in the word. These are ALL useful and creative puzzle pieces of discerning God’s voice, but some are more effective than others for different people. If you are more extroverted then quite time, though still necessary, is a  more evasive device and talking with others is more preferred. This would be likely reversed for introverts. However you spin it, these are all, I would say necessary, forms of worshiping God.

This weekend I had the opportunity to travel with my fellow improvisational teammates  to a Wichita area Nazarene lock – in. Side note, You all should hire Action Pact to perform at church, school, and whatever other events you want some energy, comedy, and interaction.

               https://www.mnu.edu/serve-teams/action-pact.html

Back on track, the lock-in was awesome! Improv, speakers, gym time, ice skating, and staying up until 6 in the morning made it epic! The best part was the focus that was exhibited at the beginning, before most the chaos began. My favorite type of worshiping God took place. Music! We sang amazing songs; fast, slow, energy-filled, and spirit-consumed. My reaction got me thinking and I realized that was as impactful that music had been to me in awhile. I, and most of the 500 other people, was/were jumping, shouting, clapping, and encountering God.

I believe worship, in whatever facet, can help you encounter the Lord. Whether it is shouting praise and worship or instrumental music that you use to pray to God, the possibilities are almost endless! I believe that the music gives your heart the words to say as your mind is at a loss. I see this in what came after the worship. A speaker who talked to vulnerable hearts and prepared the road for an altar call. Sitting on the front row and seeing all these young people pour their hearts out through tears and postures taken. The best part was the comfort that followed; the loving hand of a youth worker or friend was beautiful!

Some people encounter God more in writing, drawing, alone time, or day to day life and that’s beautiful! For me, music is my favorite avenue. Being on this campus makes it SO easy! So many talented musicians and opportunities to excel in that area! I am blessed to be surrounded like this.

I encourage you all to find whatever way you feel God talk to your life the most! If you already know, never let go of it and even try to grow in other ways! After all, our God is always talking we just have to learn to listen. Sometimes it won’t make sense, but just keep turning the puzzle piece until God reveals the bigger picture!

Keep on and keep God my friends,
Joey

Joey Alligier

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October 31, 2012

What if I can’t see?

October 31, 2012 | By | One Comment

Imagine you are driving. It’s been quite a drive and you’re a little antsy to get where you’re going. The conditions aren’t the best. Sorta foggy, it’s beginning to drizzle. It’s near nightfall and you think you’re getting lost. O and you’re blindfolded. There are so many options on which way to go, what road to venture down. What do you choose?

This is life. Whatever “car” we’ve been given or decided to try and use to get going. Some of us have a Lexus or a 2012 Ford Fusion. While others may drive something along the lines of an 88 Ford Crown Victoria. The car we take may decide the level of difficulty at times, but our life situations do not decide our outcome.

We come to a point in life where there are decisions to be made. Whether it be concerning relationships, schools, and other possible paths of life. It is never an easy decision, but what worth effort comes cheap? Our salvation came at a high cost, school often comes at a very high price, success in which ever facet you want it in comes with work. What we often neglect is that we don’t have to fight alone. School has teachers/tutors and success is often accompanied by people who care. The same is applicable in our drives as Christians. We can get people to be our back seat navigators or when life gets that hard and it’s necessary, be our tow truck.

Don’t forget that failure is okay. It only reveals correction and answers for next time. As Paul sort of asks, “Does that mean we should continue to fail?” Of course not! A set back is a set up for a comeback! Throughout the Bible we see failure, but reasoning, guidance, and purpose behind it! Does this mean getting back up after you’ve fallen the 18th time is gonna be cake? NOPE. BUT, as the movie Soul Surfer cares to share, “I don’t need easy, just possible.”

 

So, back to our car ride. The road is life. It’s long and dreary sometimes. We are all wanting to get somewhere we are not. The conditions are the failures we get to face, the ones we can choose to address and adjust our skills to or let them throw us off. It’s foggy because we don’t know what’s next. A hill, mountain, sharp turn, or curve may be lurking beyond our 5 foot eye-sight range. The rain that starts is often when it gets the hardest. We begin to lose sight and try all that we can to get it off ASAP. Life is getting dark, due to all that’s already come at you, you lose hope and don’t know where to turn. You may wonder how you are driving successfully at all with a blindfold on, right? Well, that’s because you have made the decision to put it on! Follow me here :) You do have friends that can be in the backseat, but only One can have control of the wheel, if you let Him. Jesus is your guide, He knows the twists and turns coming. So, you gave Him the wheel and trusted Him by putting on the blindfold. So does it really matter if you can’t see? After all, faith is hope in the unseen.

Keep on and keep God my friends,

Joey

Joey Alligier

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October 23, 2012

Chosen

October 23, 2012 | By | 4 Comments

On October 23rd in Community Chapel at College Church there was a group from Africa that belted it out, broke it down with some sweet moves, and definitely praised the Lord. They were called Chosen, and for good reason! They were “chosen” by God to excel at what I am incapable of, to do what I plan to do in that of bringing Christ to those EVERYWHERE, and also remind me of what I forget sometimes.

There are two separate things I’d like to focus on in this piece. First, what those amazing kids reminded me of. In one of the songs one of the young girls said something along the lines of, “No matter the struggle, the fight, the mountain to climb, God is there and will help.” Given that today wasn’t the most joyous of days to begin with, I felt like poop inside and out and nothing was really going right, this is what I needed to hear! Often times God uses the simplest things to prove Himself the strongest. Like the faith, and in this case-talent, of a child. This leads us to the next, more applicable section!

In the first section I mentioned two talents or actions. The fact that these children could break it down and I can’t and the ultimate goal of what they do and how I can connect. As atypical as these statements seem, they make perfect sense when we see them in a larger light. We are all distinctly designed instruments in God’s tool box. As 1 Corinthians 12 puts it, we are all different, yet integral, parts of the body of Christ. Some of us can dance and some of us can speak, some will lead congregations of people in a church, and some will start them. This topic doesn’t even include the people whose ministry is through their occupation, not strictly “ministry”. What all these ministerial positions or abilities have in common is the second part within my first statement. The talent is different but the goal and the anticipated outcome is the same; revealing the power of God.

We are all chosen for God’s ministry, even if we aren’t in “ministry”. This is apparent by the next thing that happened in chapel. MNU women’s basketball coach Aubrey Clair stood up and gave her testimony. She was actually semi-tricked into the whole situation. She wasn’t comfortable up there like the dancing/singing group was, but the impact had the same basis. God will guide, lead, and help us when it’s the most dim.

The avenues that God presented Himself were SO different, as there are in every day and everyone’s life. BUT our God is what remains, always. Through decisions to be made, issues to be faced, and trials to be won, He is there. There is never any reason to fear. So always remember, whether you are a singin/dancin fool or someone who was kinda baited into giving your testimony, you are here for God’s purpose, no matter the avenue. With Aubrey and Chosen it was the SAME stage, SAME God, DIFFERENT purpose, BOTH CHOSEN!

Keep on and keep God my friends.

Joey Alligier

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October 15, 2012

Passion, Purpose, Pumpkin

October 15, 2012 | By | No Comments

On October 13, 2012 at 8am, in the cool, about to rain, Kansas weather a race was run. I was about to embark on a journey with one of my best friends and encouragements Mike Reynolds. Music prevalent was over the surrounding chattering crowd. Numerous shouts of encouragement being thrown out and an all around joyous time being had. All this somehow associated with one of the most massive sorrowful events that any family could experience. It was in honor of an amazing family, and I have never met them. The story, the fight, the loss, but the purpose triumphs. A record 3550 people attend an event to run, walk, jog, and maybe even briskly stroll. Plus the numerous people who didn’t run, but assisted in making the 14th Annual Jared Coones Memorial Pumpkin 5K Run/Walk a memorable one.

What was the first guy to discover milk doing to that poor cow? What was Captain Hook’s name before he became an amputee? Why do bad things always happen to good people? (I believe it’s because they can handle it and turn it into a positive, but that’s just me).There are some things in life we don’t understand. More specifically, why would a loving God take the life of a young boy with his whole life ahead of him and then leave the father as a widower due to the same infectious, disgusting disease. That’s the million dollar question that can only be speculated upon. In Romans 5:3-5 it states, “Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope. And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured out into our hearts through the Holy Spirit, who has been given to us.” I believe we experience hardships in life, not because doesn’t care, but because there is positive, there is hope that we can choose to seek and embrace or ignorantly turn away from and harden our hearts from a God that wants to be our Comforter.

Life is 10% what happens to you and 90% how you react. In my life I have been on both sides of the fight. Winning by finding God and running to the healer and the not so joyous side of letting what Satan presents consume me. I have reacted positively and negatively. But, through it all, I have ended up here. Still fighting and striving to cling to the hope that is offered in Romans and throughout the 66 page love letter we have. In the Coones family’s case, fighting to honor their son Jared and then imagine how desire to continue to fight could have stopped after Jayne (Jared’s mother) passed away. Devastation, for lack of a stronger word, comes to mind. But, instead, look where this memorial has reached and not even close to having peaked.

Before the race, I was asked why I was running. Well, to be frank (Don’t worry my name is still Joey), I like to challenge myself and that was my initial thought. Which led to more contemplation. Why do we run, walk, skip, in these races? It’s silly to think so many run so they can give up money and get a measly t-shirt . A minimal amount knew the people, most have never ventured a mile or two in their shoes, and we may not even be from the area affected. I then formulated the answer that I run not only to challenge myself, but to run for the ones who can’t. To take strides in a positive direction, to fight to the finish, to push ourselves in honor of people who fought and were beat. It gets hard, in life and in running (the pictures clearly prove). But with challenge comes growth, passion, and empathy. While the people are no longer here, their story, their fight, their purpose lives on in every safety pinned bib, every drop of sweat, and every stride taken.

Here’s to you Jared, Jayne, and the Coones family purpose. Thank you for the challenge, the example, the story that lives on

Keep on and keep God friends

 

P.S. If you didn’t see any issues with the image at the top of the blog ignore this. If you did, blame technology.

 

Joey Alligier

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October 8, 2012

“Hey, that was a great service at Building today!”

October 8, 2012 | By | 3 Comments

The congregating of Christ followers most likely started directly after the spread of Christianity in the first century. Over MANY years we have what we call church today. The beautiful buildings, sometimes testy air conditioning, hopefully comfy pews, potluck dinners, and outlandish youth group games are how the typical description of the church is perceived in typical minds and conversation. But, is that all we are? Are we defined by what we have and the look we give off? Have we become that superficial as a society? Now, don’t get me wrong, nice churches are most definitely a blessing from God. But if you dig deeper what really defines the church.

The church is the people, not the building. Now, there are some questions that arise with this statement. For me, thinking about this brought up the fact that in the Old Testament the church WAS the building and not so much the people. But why? In the Old Testament the church/ tabernacle had a Holy of Holies that was not for the common man to enter. This where God was; this is where the church was.

When Christ died, so did that. The Advocate ( Or in Greek, Paraclete <— I learned that in New Testament class) or the Holy Spirit changed the way things work. God is found in us. We have the opportunity to experience the power of Christ in our lives more than before. Now, this does not discredit church. We are still called to come together in Christ’s name! Plus, I mean who doesn’t love the wacky youth group games! Am I right or am I right?

The picture above was my church youth group on Sunday morning. I put it because my topic is church and what defines it, but mainly because it looks so sweet! We met in a building, but to me, many of those people I could experience the power of church outside that cramped room! I see God in those people more and more each day. That’s what it’s like here at MNU. Church could be the picture at the top or the one at the bottom; in a square with a fountain in the middle of downtown Wichita’s party scene blaring Jesus music, playing frisbee, talking to strangers, discussing life, and reading scripture. I could also experience church outside on the grass late at night or on my RA’s couch. To me, it’s beautiful that this whole campus is like a church. After all God shows up in more than a stained glass building! Matthew 18:20 says, “For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.” Now don’t get me wrong I believe God absolutely sees a congregation gathering to bring honor to His name on any given day! But as my pastor back home once eloquently stated, ” Sure you could go to church without members, you’d just end up saying ” Yeah, I went to building this morning.”.

In conclusion, I hope that this either opened your eyes to where or through who you could experience God. Never forget the way the church is talked about; the bride of Christ. And plus, why would Paul write letters to churches if they didn’t make a difference in life? As you go on with your busy day, take time to thank God for the gift of freedom, fellowship, and unfailing love he presents to us.

Keep on and keep God my friends,

Joey Alligier