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Mariah McCommon


February 15, 2015

“Honoring the Past, Shaping the Future”

February 15, 2015 | By | No Comments

I mentioned in my blog last week about this cool conference called M15 that I had the privilege to attend. This conference takes place every four years in different places. The fact that it was in Kansas City this year and I was able to go as a freshman was an incredible blessing!

My friend Jaque and I left Monday afternoon and headed to downtown Kansas City. MNU took care of most of the costs: hotel, the conference, and lunch on Tuesday. We stayed at the Crowne Plaza hotel. There’s 28 floors to that thing and we were on the 17th. I despise elevators to no end because I made the mistake of watching Devil on Halloween one year, but there was no way I was climbing 17 flights of stairs. It was a sacrifice I was willing to make. BI love any form of adventure I can get, and being from the country, tall buildings and busy traffic is something to get used to. I’m still not used to Olathe traffic so I hardly ever go anywhere that I have to drive to.

The conference started off with a service Monday evening after dinner and registration. There were five services total with six workshop sessions available. I went to 4 workshops and by the time I left, my brain hurt from all the information. The first one was “Capturing the Hispanic Heart.” Since I plan to be a missionary in a Hispanic country, the workshop touched on how to interact with Hispanics and fully accept their culture.

The next session was called “Hospitable Church.” Shawna, pastor and leader of the session, talked about why the younger generation is falling away from the church. I’ve been wondering about this topic for awhile now and the reasons vary, but the “Y” generation feels relationally detached from the church once they graduate high school. The funny thing is, I am writing a paper for Comp II about this very topic. The information I obtained I am definitely using in my paper. I’m excited about that.

Each service, a different speaker spoke. My favorite was Cheryl Sanders. She was hilarious and you could tell she was on fire for God. She also spoke on the subject of younger generations, but that was pretty much the theme for the conference, hence the motto “Honoring the Past, Shaping the Future.”

The last workshop I went to had to do with a controversial topic in today’s society: “What to do when a congregant member says, “I’m Gay!” I’ve been curious myself as to how to handle these situations throughout my everyday life. Without getting too much into what was said, it was a great discussion. The panel of people was helpful in the way that different viewpoints were shared.


Panel of pastors from different churches

I am immensely grateful for the opportunity I had to go to this conference. As much fun as it is to be at MNU, being able to skip a couple days of class, not wearing shower shoes, eating at Chipotle and going to Starbucks was definitely a great time. Surprisingly, I ended up getting to bed earlier too. Each night I try to reflect back on my day and figure out what I can do differently the next day. Monday night, there was this beautiful sunset. It was one of those sunsets that was so beautiful that a phone can’t quite capture all of its beauty. I see God in every sunset and I knew when I saw that one that He was ever so present throughout the conference. He hasn’t left me yet either. I hope to attend many more of these conferences in the future. If you would like to know more about the M15 conference:


I hope you guys have a fantastic week. Thanks for reading!! :)

Aaron Merrell


February 15, 2015

Sock Hop

February 15, 2015 | By | No Comments

Hey everyone! I hope you’ve all had a great week!

I’m gonna show you of an example of a part of my MNU experience that is relatively new, but for which I’m really excited.

Social Life director Presley Wilson and I.

Social Life director Presley Wilson and I.

So, last semester, I was a member of the Social Life committee for ASG, and this semester I’m doing that and I’m the Social Life representative for the sophomore class council. So, part of my duties for that have been to help out with ASG Social Life events!  This week, we had a brand new event planned by Presley Wilson, our student director of Social Life.  It was called Sock Hop, and it was basically a ’50s-themed party.  From set-up to teardown and a late night dinner afterward, we had a lot of fun.  Here’s what an MNU student could expect when they came to the party:


Sharon Jackson, Whitney Peck and myself at Steak-n-Shake!


The first thing was dancing to hits from the ’50s and today.  This set the mood for the rest of the night as the students filled Land Gym.  The next item was a show by MNU’s Improv SERVEteam, Action Pact.  The students did a great job and we all had a great time listening to them perform.  After this was more dancing and karaoke to finish off the night.  During the whole event there was a Fry Bar with fresh french fries, tater tots and onion rings.  After tear-down, the party moved to Steak-n-Shake.  If a student dressed up in ’50s attire, their name was entered into a drawing, and the first 20 people drawn got a free meal!  We had tons of fun the whole night and the whole thing went off as a great success.


Dean of Student Life, Ron Jackson filling water for us.

I have so much fun working with ASG, and I hope this was a good insight into what some events can entail here at MNU!

  Have a great week!


Katie Linsey


February 13, 2015

Balancing an Unbalanced Life

February 13, 2015 | By | 2 Comments

What does a balanced life look like?

I honestly couldn’t tell you, because I don’t have one.

I used to think that my life had to be balanced. That I had to have a set schedule. That I had to have everything together.

Being in college has forced me to realize that I don’t have to have a balanced life, and certainly that it’s nearly impossible to have one.

If I told you my priorities, showed you my calendar, and then you saw how my days actually played out, you would be very confused. But that’s okay, because it used to confuse me too.

I used to think because I couldn’t “get my life together” that I was a failure. I thought I was doing everything wrong and I didn’t know how to suddenly start doing everything right.

My top priorities in life include spending quality time with Jesus, doing my schoolwork, and living a healthy lifestyle. However, those priorities don’t always make it into every day of my life. It stinks to say that, but it’s true.

There are days when I don’t open my Bible. There are days when I don’t open my backpack. There are days when I don’t workout.

…and I think that’s okay.

Life isn’t about checking things off of a to-do list or having enough time to do everything or beating yourself up when your day didn’t go as planned.

Life is about recognizing what’s important to you and finding purpose in everything you do.

Life is about waking up every morning and handing your day to God.

Here’s the prayer I pray every morning before I even get out of bed or check my phone:


I give my day to You… do whatever You want with it.

Give me opportunities to glorify You. Create divine appointments.

Give me strength and energy to get through this day.

I can’t do this alone.”

I’m not saying it’s bad to make plans and have to-do lists. I have both of those, and they help me immensely. I’m simply saying that when we hand our days over to God and live to glorify Him, we don’t need to worry about having a “balanced” life. God works through the chaos, stress, anxiety, and fear. He’s glorified in all of it when we let Him take the wheel.

God’s plan for your day may not be the same as your plan for your day.

We gotta listen to God and be intentional.

Through that, we’ll make memories.

… and REALLY live.


Luther Okeyo


February 12, 2015

A Job Opportunity

February 12, 2015 | By | 2 Comments

So just to let you guys know, I have been looking for a job for a while now and I finally go a got found a job that was interested in me enough to have me come in for an interview. The place I’m interviewing at is Heritage Christian Academy, it’s on 159th and Black Bob. I know this is going to sound kinda bad but it’s like MNU, if MNU was high school or middle school.


This is me walking into Heritage Christian… I can’t describe to you how nervous I was, but I made sure that at least I wasn’t going to look bad for this interview and you already know my flat top game was on point.


Heritage Christian was looking for an assistant track coach and I saw the job posting on the job board on the MNU portal.

You guys should really use this thing. If you need a job just go to your portal and its under the undergraduate tab.

You guys should really use this thing. If you need a job just go to your portal and its under the undergraduate tab. There are plenty of jobs on their but you gotta be quick and call before the job are filled. They have everything from babysitting to being a receptionist.

I met with the Athletic Director, Tammi Wolt. She actually has 3 kids who also go to Heritage Christian. Two of them actually run track. I ran track in high school. I ran the 400 and the 800, most of the time I ran both events in the same track meet. I also long jumped, ran 4×1 relay, and 4×4 relay.

This is me running the 4x4 as you can see I'm moving at a near light speed pace, thats why the camera is having a tough time taking a good picture.

This is me running the 4×4 as you can see I’m moving at a near light speed pace, thats why the camera is having a tough time taking a good picture.

I loved running track in high school it’s too bad that MNU didn’t have a program when I came in. I sometimes wonder how good I could have been if I pursued a collegiate track career but that is another dream for another lifetime.

I can remember all the meets, the hard work and the painful breaths after victories. As you can see I have some top flight emotional support helping me out here.

I can remember all the meets, the hard work and the painful breaths after victories. As you can see I have some top flight emotional support helping me out here.

Anyway I thought my interview with Tammi went well and she is a big supporter of MNU, I think that really helped me out (BONUS POINTS!!!) Heritage Christian looks like a great place for me to lay down roots as I start to venture into the world. The kids at the school are nice, and you can see really feel that spirit of God flows through that place. It would be a wonder to work there, to help the kids get better on track and for kids and Heritage Christian help me get better on spiritual walk with Christ.

So I got the job and it's time to celebrate, looks like I'll be starting Monday. I'm so excited for this new opportunity.

So I got the job and it’s time to celebrate, looks like I’ll be starting Monday. I’m so excited for this new opportunity.

SO I GOT THE JOB!!!! I’M TOO PUMPED RIGHT NOW!!! CAN’T WAIT TO GET TO WORK!!! I’m excited if I can’t tell. They didn’t even let me leave the building, I met the Dean of student life we talked for a little bit and now I can’t wait to meet the head coach and get right down to business. I’m so excited, I just can’t hide it.  I don’t know the rest of the song goes but you get the idea. WOOOOOOOO!!!!!

Luther Okeyo


February 10, 2015

The Willmer Family

February 10, 2015 | By | No Comments

Willmer Family @ Arrowhead

The Willmer family after our 21-17 thriller win over #2 Missouri Valley at the defeat all cancer game at Arrowhead Stadium.

The Willmers are a pretty cool family. You have Coach Willmer  and his wife Lindsay, Emma (12) who is on the left, Addie Joy (10) on the right, Titus (6) who is wearing the Rangers shirt, and the twins Gwenyth & Nehemiah (4). I can honestly say I have never met another family like them.

First of all you have the twins Gwenyth & Nehemiah. Gwenyth is a little fireball of energy and don’t worry you’ll see what I mean in the video. She wouldn’t have let me leave her house until I played hide and seek with her and she is pretty good so I was at a disadvantage from the start. She loves to say amen a lot and she is so adorable.I can’t forget her twin Nehemiah, this guy looks like a future pioneer in the making. He reminds me a lot of myself back in the day. Except he has way more energy than I ever did when I was his age. Where do they store this energy? He isn’t a shy kid and I dare to sit down and talk to him for a few minutes and not fall in love with him. He is just too cool.

Next, you have Titus. I can’t really figure him out. In the video I don’t think Titus said three words, but after I done shooting the video, boy did he have things to say. I played UNO with him, Coach Willmer, and Lindsay. He is NOT a nice UNO play. I can’t tell you how many times he hit me with a draw 4, or skipped my turn. Once Titus has you down in UNO, he will never let you back up. Titus along with his family love MNU and football, but you can tell he just loves them both a little more.


Here is Titus playing with my Wide Receiver coach Matt George after our win against Benedictine.

Finally you have the two older sisters of Emma, and Addie Joy. Emma is like a second mom, and she takes care of the younger kids like good older sister should. She loves to read and I could tell she is really into school. Also she loves that Kansas is lower-key than California. Addie Joy is also big into school. She is a very soft spoken, and person. Trust me I can attest to that, through the many hours I spent editing the video trying to get her voice to be louder. These girls were so nice and really went out of their way to make sure like I was apart of the family. They are great role models for their younger siblings as they all grow and mature together.

Emma and Addie Joy enjoying the game at Arrowhead.

Emma and Addie Joy enjoying the game at Arrowhead.

Last semester I had the opportunity to interview Coach Willmer and his family for the MNU newspaper… The Trailblazer. It was an amazing experience and I was able to see a side of coach that most people wouldn’t be able to see. For example: you never want to play UNO with Coach Willmer trust me you just don’t. Anyway before I even began the interview, coach stopped me and we proceeded to have dinner. After dinner I played hide and seek with his kids and UNO with whole family. It was an awesome time, I had so much fun that I almost forgot about the whole reason I went to go see coach and his family in the first place. I ended up making a video of the interview I had with Coach Willmer and his family. The video should be up by the end of the week, I’d love to just show the video but my hands are tied. Don’t worry though, I have some outtakes and things that didn’t make the final cut.

For example: like when Coach Willmer and his wife were almost on a pilot for an HGTV show.

Also I caught I little touching moment between a father and his son.

Finally, I had coach and his family talk about the difference between MNU and Azusa Pacific. Azusa was the school where he was previously coaching at. He was the defensive coordinator.

The Willmers are a pretty cool family. You have Coach Willmer  and his wife Lindsay, Emma (12) who is on the left, Addie Joy (10) on the right, Titus (6) who is wearing the Rangers shirt, and the twins Gwenyth & Nehemiah (4). I can honestly say I have never met another family like them.

First of all you have Gwenyth, she is a little fireball of energy and don’t worry you’ll see what I mean in the video. She wouldn’t have let me leave her house until I played hide and seek with her and she is pretty good so I was at a disadvantage from the start. She loves to say amen a lot and she is so adorable.

I can’t forget her twin Nehemiah, this guy looks like a future pioneer in the making. He reminds me a lot of myself back in the day.

Haley Raydo


February 9, 2015

Finding Joy in the Ordinary

February 9, 2015 | By | One Comment

Simple, yet so difficult.

Why does our generation struggle with this concept?

We get bored,

Desensitized to the beauty of creation

to the beauty of our loved ones

to the beauty of words and learning.

Instead our souls are allowed to be filled with junk.

We choose to believe what we hear,

to believe what we see,

to believe what we are told we need,

and in this, we forget the joy of discovery.

New places and new ideas,

or old places and old ideas.

We forget what life is about,

What joy is to be found.

We become satisfied with little,

But there is so much more!

Life is about the early mornings,

the relationships: built and restored,

the learning,

the compassion and humility,

the appreciation of beauty and of sacrifice.

You could live a whole lifetime,

seeking happiness and never finding it.

Because life isn’t about circumstances,

It’s about your mindset in the circumstances.

The key is joy, and joy doesn’t just bring life,

It brings resurrection life.

Mariah McCommon


February 8, 2015


February 8, 2015 | By | No Comments

It seems that every time I shuffle all 1,310 of my songs on my iPod, one particular songs makes it in the top twenty. The song, “Everything,” by Lifehouse is a long song but worth it. I don’t know if any of you already know the song or where it’s famous from, but it is played to a skit on YouTube. I’ve watched this video many times since I was introduced to it. I cry every single time. Lately, I’ve been feeling overwhelmed and down on myself as I mentioned last week. This week was much better thankfully. School is getting tougher, relationships are being challenged, and my stress level is out the wazoo. I’ve been in a few difficult situations that I’m not able to handle on my own. I immediately turn to God in prayer and ask for guidance and strength to help me through.

This video speaks truth to almost anyone who feels not good enough or like they’ve messed up too much in their life. I cry every time because it always relates to something I’m going through. I want the video speak for itself so do me a favor and watch it if you haven’t already. It’s life changing!

Tomorrow evening I’m leaving with a friend to attend a Ministry conference in Kansas City. I’m super duper excited and can’t wait to blog about it. Hopefully I’ll have some cool pictures to post too. I’m not exactly sure what I’m getting myself into by going, but I think I’m going for a reason!

Have a great week!

(Feature Image: me. with my phone. it’s beautiful)

Aaron Merrell


February 8, 2015

Busy Busy Busy

February 8, 2015 | By | No Comments

And so begins the busiest month of the semester:

In February, there’s a lot going on at MNU, so here’s what you can be excited for:
The RA Selection Process

Every spring, the interview process to select new RAs begins. Resident Assistants are the liaison between the Residential Life staff, and the residents of the on-campus dorms, so you can imagine a rigorous interview process. RAs are typically the go-to person for any issue with your room, any type of question, or, in some cases, for advice and guidance. These are the people you spend a lot of your time with, and are usually the smiling face welcoming you to your new home for a year.

ASG Exec Elections and Appointments

Associated Student Government begins the election process for the executive board in February as well. This results in a flurry of petitions going around campus, as well as campaign posters and new creative campaigning strategies each year. The members of the newly elected board will be the student-chosen group of people to lead events, activities, and support for all traditional undergraduate students of MNU. New incoming and returning students can look forward to a Welcome Week full of events to get the year kicked off in the fall.

MNU SERVEteams Audition and Interviews

Each summer, groups of students from MNU go out into the MNU Community/region to Nazarene district assemblies. They are not only a publicity tool for our university, but a way for the university to minister in places it normally wouldn’t be able to. Different teams include a sponsor team, a worship team and a vocal team.

Put all three of the above opportunities with tests ramping up, performances, class time, jobs, and sports, and you get a lot of very busy college students.

Busy doesn’t necessarily have to mean stressed, though, and the month is one of the funnest.

With so many things going on, and each of us committing time and energy to so much, I’d like to leave you all with a bible verse:

Colossians 3:17
And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

Thanks, and have a great week!


Samantha Moore


February 2, 2015

Weekend Update

February 2, 2015 | By | One Comment

KT and I whipped this video up this weekend! We were trying so hard not to laugh the whole time our faces look kinda scary during it but we had a blast making it! These are some things you need to know about MNU! Enjoy as much as we did!

~KT and Sam

Haley Raydo


February 2, 2015


February 2, 2015 | By | No Comments

Hello friends

Our two – (three?) week enjoyment of decent weather has come up to an abrupt, yet expected, end.  I rolled over this morning and looked at my weather app to find it was a whopping 4 degrees.  Incredible.  Everyone’s dream Monday morning.  To make it all more satisfying, today is Groundhog Day so the groundhog does it’s thing and has declared 6 more weeks of winter (yay).

Oh well.  That is what happens when you live in Kansas, you never really know what you’re going to get.  Exciting yet extremely annoying.  Although, let’s praise God because it has warmed up and this day is turning itself around.

Even amidst of my not-so-thrilled remarks toward the bitter cold, I am reminded of Christ’s beautiful creation.  This world is beautiful! I haven’t experienced enough of the world as I long to experience.  Even though, I am amazed at his masterpiece and workmanship.  There is beauty all around if you choose to see it.  You may not be on the beach, or live in the mountains, or roam the streets of Paris, but His creation is all around.  He could have made the earth however He wanted.  He cared enough to give us a beautiful temporary home. If I have that mindset, the cold and snow don’t seem too bad. Even on campus there is such beautiful trees and landscape! Find the beauty.

Today (even in the extreme cold) choose to see His beauty.

Thanks for stopping by



My trip to Peru (2013)


Beach in Texas (2014)

atlanta 2012

Somewhere in Georgia (2012)


(Featured image found at