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)
The craziness of the semester has come to a hilt for me. This week has been the very essence of scrambling around trying to get everything done, turned in, and checked off my list. However, despite the stress, God has been making his blessings yet again evident to me and is continuing to give me his peace. So thankful for what he allowed me to experience and be a part of this week.
This last weekend there was a Nazarene youth conference called Breakaway here on campus. Nazarene youth groups from the Kansas City area joined together in College Church for a night of worship, speaking, and fellowship, as well as activities that lasted on throughout the night. My roommate Kai was a part of a MNU worship band a couple years ago called Sounds and Silences. Kai, her twin Marshall, and five other MNU students traveled to different Nazarene camps throughout the summer leading worship and participating as camp counselors and also lead worship for our chapels every week throughout the school year. Sounds and Silences was reunited to lead worship for Breakaway and asked me to join and sing with them. It was so refreshing getting to make music with these amazing people. Needless to say, we had a blast and this night was such an encouragement.
Don’t know if you’ve heard the buzz about this wonderful lady, but Miss Kylee Pearson is the newest addition to the Residential Life family, being the new Residential Educator in Spindle as of this semester. It has been so very good getting to know her heart because this gal is absolutely amazing. She brings a good conversation with her wherever she goes and always has a bright smile on her face, possessing the vibrant personality that makes every interaction with her most definitely worth-while. I have loved her genuineness and transparency, which is so refreshing, and her eagerness to hear others’ stories. What a blessing this woman has been and will continue to be to this community.
Yet another encouragement that God provided this week was getting to skype with a dear dear friend who lives in New York City. It was so crazy hearing about the chaos and havoc that has been so present in the city since Hurricane Sandy and all the damage that was caused. Yet, even though she has been immersed in parts of the city that have been completely devastated, helping clean out houses that are no more, she told me of the immense trust that she has in her Father. She explained that she has been experiencing such peace in him and is so rooted in the fact that he is in control. How intriguing and peace-giving it was for me to hear her heart and her deep trust in what God was doing in response to what was going on around her.
This all brings to mind a quote by C.S. Lewis that I’ll close out with.
“God cannot give us happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.”
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!
A loss of confidence or enthusiasm; despiritedness
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.
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.
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.
Homecoming week is one of those weeks that is filled to the brim with all kinds of events. Two of my wonderful roomies are on ASG this year and worked their buns off trying to make homecoming week enjoyable for everyone. Every day was themed something different, including blast from the past day, reppin’ yo team day, and country swag day which lead up to our annual carbash and hoedown. Land gym soon became a sweat fest mixed with hay, cowboy boots, donuts, and cider. Everyone line danced until we were all completely drenched. The following evening was the homecoming banquet which was located downtown at the Uptown Theatre. Us ladies got all dolled up and primped ourselves until we could primp no more and met up with our men to take off. The venue was so fun and my dearest Lauren did such an amazing job getting all the details together so that we could enjoy the beautiful night. There was dancing this time around (pretty bawler for a Nazarene school) and we had a great time making fools of ourselves and looking absolutely ridiculous. The following night, after our pioneers crushed the yellow jackets (woot woot!), everyone went to Emerald City Gym which is basically a huge play place for the big kids. This place is filled with trampolines, rock-climbing walls, gymnastic equipment, ropes, and has a huge foam pit. It was basically a night where we revisited the good ol’ childhood days, which was just perfect. All in all, this past weekend was a riot. Thanks to all who made it possible!