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Mariah McCommon

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February 1, 2015

Judah Smith

February 1, 2015 | By | No Comments

Hi y’all. I hope everyone has had a great week so far. To be completely honest, this week hasn’t been the best week for me. Especially the last couple of days. I think some of it has to do with this insanely cold weather. It must be getting me down more than it should. Anywho, I’d like to share with you my one of my favorite pastors of all time. His name is Judah Smith. I was introduced to him last year at the Passion 2015 conference down in Houston, Texas. I’m pretty sure they just had another conference there to which I didn’t attend.

Judah is an author and wrote the famous book, “Jesus Is.” I haven’t had the chance to read it yet, but I plan to when I have the time. Though I haven’t in awhile, I listen to his sermons quite a bit. Sometimes I play them while I sleep. Yes, that sounds weird, but it puts positive thoughts into my mind while I sleep and I even wake up happier. Listening to anything positive while sleeping can affect a morning mood. It really works, I promise.

My all-time favorite sermon of Judah’s is the one I have listed below. I’m not going to say much about it, but it’s worth every second. If you need some motivation to watch it, he’s talking on the subject of love and he’s hilarious. When I have bad days, like I’ve been having lately, I watch these and read out of my Bible for comfort. I can’t even count how many times I have watched this video and it seems God has something new to say to me each time. Now that I think about it, I’m going to go watch it again.

He preaches on the same topic in a second video as well.

I’m almost jealous of the way that God speaks through Judah. He’s incredibly blessed. I really hope you’ll take some time to watch these and take from them. If you end up loving his sermons like I do, he has a bagillion on YouTube. Go check them out.

God bless you throughout this upcoming week and stay warm!

 

Aaron Merrell

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February 1, 2015

Identity Crisis

February 1, 2015 | By | No Comments

Hey everyone!

This week, I’m going to talk about identity.

My personal statement/motto for 2015 is Galatians 1:10:

“Am I now trying to get people to think well of me? Or do I want God to think well of me? Am I trying to please people? If I were, I would not be serving Christ.”

I have had to learn not to spend time worrying about what others think of me. It’s important to listen to others’ advice, especially close family and friends, but ultimately I live for the Savior, and I’m looking for His approval only.

It’s important to remember in who our identity is found in; in Christ alone.

So, if someone puts you down, talks behind your back, or makes you feel generally crappy, instead of wasting energy and breath on ignorant people, focus that energy on celebrating your identity as a child of God.

That’s it, y’all.

-Aaron

Katie Linsey

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January 29, 2015

#StopAshton2k15

January 29, 2015 | By | One Comment

The past few days, my friend Ashton has had bronchitis, so she’s been taking lots of Nyquil. In case you were wondering, Nyquil doesn’t set well with Ashton. Although it makes her feel better, she often says strange things and doesn’t remember what happened the next morning. Here’s a few tweets and text messages to illustrate the craziness that has been happening on the first floor of Stockton Courtside since this sickness invaded.

AshtonFunny

AshtonFunny1

AshtonFunny2

AshtonFunny4

So, as you can see, it’s been a fun and interesting few days with Ashton in a permanent Nyquil-induced mood. But, in all seriousness, Ashton is an amazing friend that I know will be around forever. Here’s some proof that she’s a supportive, encouraging friend beyond compare.

AshtonSerious

AshtonSerious1

AshtonSerious2

You all should get to know her if you already don’t.

The friends I’ve met at college have blessed me in SO MANY WAYS. Wow. God is good.

Have a beautiful weekend, lovely people!

-KT

Luther Okeyo

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January 29, 2015

My Typical Weekday Now…

January 29, 2015 | By | No Comments

Well now that I live off campus, I had to adjust to a new schedule. Only have like 3 classes now so I basically have 1 class a day except for Monday. (Still have a night class on Monday, but NO CLASS ON FRIDAY!!!!) Well now on my typical weekday, I get to sleep in (usually waking around 10 or 11 everyday), I go to school around 12 and go to class. But after that is when the real tough part (well not really tough as much as it is frustrating, and awesome) of my day starts. I go home and take care of my baby cousins.

The little lady in middle is Lauren aka "Lo Lo", the little guy sitting on the couch is Jordan aka "Jo Jo" and the guy on the top right is Ryan aka "Ba Ba".

The little lady in middle is Lauren aka “Lo Lo”, the little guy sitting on the couch is Jordan aka “Jo Jo” and the guy on the top right is Ryan aka “Ba Ba”.

Everyday this guys take over more and more of my world. I love them to death, but man these kids will be the death of me. I don’t even know where they get all their energy from, ESPECIALLY  after school. I don’t know about you guys but when I was their age (oh man I’m starting to sound like a certain guy I know), when I got back home from school I was exhausted, I at least needed a nap or something first… These guys from them minute they get off the school bus, it’s like they hit their second wind, and then they run me ragged for the next 2 or 3 hours till their moms come home from work. I mean don’t get me wrong, I love every moment of it but come on… Can I just got a break at least once..

20150129_161122

I know it doesn’t look it but Ryan (yellow shirt) is about to start dancing to this song that I playing on TV from the show on Cartoon Network “The Amazing World of Gumball.” While Jordan and I were waiting in baited breath to see what was about to happen.  

I’ll tell you this though my favorite part of the day is when we all watch Cartoon Network. The one time during they time they’re with me that they al calm down and we all just sit there and watch cartoons for about an hour.

This is Ryan's favorite show, and it's also quickly becoming my favorite. I'm going to try and explain and just find it on Netflix or something.

This is Ryan’s favorite show, and it’s also quickly becoming my favorite. I’m going to try and explain and just find it on Netflix or something.

This is Jordan's favorite show. This show is crazy and I don't understand what's going on but I know one thing nobody on the show is cooler than Pizza Steve.

This is Jordan’s favorite show. This show is crazy and I don’t understand what’s going on but I know one thing nobody on the show is cooler than Pizza Steve.

This is Lauren's favorite show and the show I know the best since I used to watch the old version of the show when I was a kid before the show was cancelled. This is hilarious and you gotta watch it.

This is Lauren’s favorite show and the show I know the best since I used to watch the old version of the show when I was a kid before the show was cancelled. This is hilarious and you gotta watch it.

It’s kinda cool how Cartoon Network does it, during the time we watch tv, all of these shows come in in the order I’ve shown you. So everybody wins! After we watch TV everybody kinda calms down a bit and they start getting tuckered out and then I put them too sleep, well basically Ryan and Jordan.

Look at these two guys, you would never imagine that these two guys were running me ragged all day, but I love them both to death.

Look at these two guys, you would never imagine that these two guys were running me ragged all day, but I love them both to death.

I wanna give a shout out to Lauren, I wouldn’t be able to survive without her. She keeps the peace, when I can’t. She always knows just what to say, and just what to do. She is my rock and a fun fact for you guys, she is a beast on the volleyball court.

Here is Lauren in all her glory and you already know she tears it up in that thing.

Here is Lauren in all her glory and you already know she tears it up in that thing.

Finally their on of their mom comes home and takes them off my hands but today it our aunt that came and took them to go hangout with my other cousins. Yea I have a huge family… but that is basically it. My regular weekday in a nutshell and I wouldn’t trade them for anything in the world no matter what happens.

Samantha Moore

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January 27, 2015

Being the Best Version of Me

January 27, 2015 | By | One Comment

The video pretty much sums everything up, but I wanted to post some fun pictures of my trip I recently took last week to California! I learned that people from California do not like it when people call it Cali and that is how they know if you are from there or not. I still like calling it Cali though, sounds more cool. Anyways, here is some pictures of my trip to San Diego.

Who runs the world.. female Student Body Presidents!cali girlss

cali beach

Some people question if there is a God… if there is not a God, I am not entirely sure how this view was possible!

cali etanSunset with the Student Body President from Mount Vernon Nazarene Ethan!

Cali surfTrevecca Nazarene’s Student Body President Megan and I with our surf boards, no I am not good!

 

cali acaiAcai bowls are the most delicious things ever!

 

 

Haley Raydo

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January 26, 2015

Ten Valuable Things You Learn in College

January 26, 2015 | By | 2 Comments

Hello friends

The semester is in officially in full swing– I have four tests next week (gross). But writing is one thing I always look forward to.  I love to write about what is on my heart, what is going on in my life, and what I am learning. So I am writing because I am escaping from my stack of books I have yet to pick up. And today that writing will be about all valuable lessons I have learned in college (yay)!

So here it is 10 Valuable Things You Learn in College

1.  There are three valuable things: Academics (grades), Social life, Sleep.  You get to choose two.

college-life chart

2. No matter how hard you try, no one is immune to a Netflix addiction.

3. You can only do the best you can.

4. You have to learn to say no.  If you don’t, you’ll soon be involved in everything and you will get burned out (see #1 for chart).

5. You can’t focus too much on the past or future.  Learn to live in the present (I wrote a previous blog “Just Stop and Learn to Be on the Beach”). Right now you may be living in the memories of the past, or thinking about all that may happen in your future, but one day you’ll wake up and you’ll miss being in college (also see previous blog “Diary of a College Student”).

6. If your roommate get’s sick ALWAYS disinfect.

7. Staying up late with your pals is (most of the time) worth it.

8. And getting up early occasionally is not the end of the world.

9. Surround yourself with people who only make you and encourage you to be better.

10. Really be dedicated to learn something.  Get really informed about one specific thing.  For me, I love to read about interesting new studies in the psychology field.  So when someone is talking to me and it relates to an article I just read- lets just say I sound smarter than I probably actually am.

And that’s about all I have.  Do you have any valuable lessons learned in college?

Thanks for stopping by

Haley

(Pictures found at http://kickofjoy.com/college-life-best-days/

Mariah McCommon

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January 25, 2015

Love Your Enemies

January 25, 2015 | By | No Comments

This past week has been quite the eye-opening week for me. My semester has started off great so far but has had a few bumps. I’ve been struggling with some personal things and it hasn’t been easy. For the past 18 years of my life, there’s been some crazy drama. College was a fresh start for me. News flash: there’s still drama in college.

Not going into any details, but the main theme throughout this week has been forgiveness and Luke 6:27-36. Being the person I am, I strongly desire for everyone to get along and be jolly. Unfortunately, that’s not reality. Not everyone is going to like you, and you may not like everyone either. We are human in that way I guess. Just because we aren’t necessarily going to be best friends with everyone, doesn’t mean we should treat them as if we hate them or even dislike them. That just makes the situation worse. That has been my greatest struggle.

Jesus didn’t die on the cross for us to despise each other. He died because He forgives us of all our sins so that we may forgive others. I’m pretty sure that’s found in Colossians somewhere. Forgiving people who have wronged you is incredibly difficult sometimes, depending on what they have done to you. When you think about it, how many times do we sin against God in one single day and yet He loves us enough to forgive us? Goodness, now that’s love. I hear so many different times about petty he-said she-said stuff all over and to be honest, it’s plain stupid.

Throughout what I have been experiencing lately, the passage in Luke has seriously been thrown into my face many times. I’m close to having it memorized because I’ve heard it and read it so much. I heard it when I spoke to a friend, when I was sitting in New Testament class, in my daily devotion the other day, and in church this morning. Now, if you don’t know what that passage of scripture says…

27 “But I say to you who hear, love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, 28 bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you. 29 Whoever hits you on the cheek, offer him the other also; and whoever takes away your coat, do not withhold your shirt from him either. 30 Give to everyone who asks of you, and whoever takes away what is yours, do not demand it back. 31Treat others the same way you want them to treat you. 32 If you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. 33 If you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. 34 If you lend to those from whom you expect to receive, what credit is that to you? Even sinners lend to sinners in order to receive back the same amount. 35 But love your enemies, and do good, and lend, expecting nothing in return; and your reward will be great, and you will be sons of the Most High; for He Himself is kind to ungrateful and evil men. 36 Be merciful, just as your Father is merciful (NASB).”

This is a great benediction to live by if you ask me. Showing love is the best way to handle any situation no matter how hard it may be. It’s my goal to fall asleep each night knowing I did at least one act of love to someone I may not know or particularly get along with. I hope some of you reading can make it that your goal as well. The temptation will always be there to judge quickly and harshly when things don’t go your way. Before you act upon any temptation to retaliate, ask yourself, “What Would Jesus Do?” I have super glued that into my mind and it helps me out tremendously through my day. I have mended the friendships and relationships that were broken and I’m truly thankful those wounds are healed.

Thanks for reading, have a blessed week and show love to someone you normally wouldn’t. The results may surprise you in the end!

(Feature Image: http://harvardhumanist.org/2012/01/16/love-your-enemies-on-mlk-jr-humanism-and-pluralism/)

Katie Linsey

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January 22, 2015

Community

January 22, 2015 | By | One Comment

Last summer, I was on summer staff at Youthfront Camp West, which is a camp in Edgerton for elementary and middle school aged students. Being on summer staff means being part of a community made up of the other summer staffers, but also the full time staff and weekly volunteers. Being a part of that community and also the community at MNU has taught me a lot. Specifically, it’s taught me the value of community and how to live life more intentionally and fully. There are many important things that I learned about community last semester that has helped me be a more contributing member of the community at MNU.

Community is caring.

A community laughs together, cries together, and cares about each other. I don’t personally know every student at MNU, but I care about everyone as if I did. I can honestly say I feel comfortable striking up a conversation with every person that I pass on campus or sit by in class… and that doesn’t happen everywhere. I even care about all of my professors and the faculty at MNU. Living in a community with a body of believers has given me a glimpse of what Heaven will be like. It’s really beautiful.

Community is not easy.

Don’t get me wrong… community is fun and great, but it’s not always an easy thing to be a part of. Community reminds me of family. You don’t get to choose your family, much like you don’t get to choose everyone who is a part of the same community as you, but you learn to love them simply because you do life with them. There are times when I get annoyed or frustrated with people. There are certain people that I don’t imagine myself being best friends with (which I’ve realized is completely fine, because who could handle over a thousand best friends anyway?). Although there are times when it’s hard, it is always worth it. I sincerely love every single person in the MNU community and I would go to great lengths to help anyone in any way I can. That’s what family does for each other… and at the end of the day, all I can do is thank God for the community He’s led me to be a part of.

Community is an opportunity for growth.

I have grown so much this summer and this past semester because of the communities I’ve been a part of. These experiences have taught me how to love people more boldly and intentionally. One thing I love about MNU is that we are encouraged to live our lives to bring glory to God, worshipping Him at all times. Being surrounded by people who are yearning to know God on a deeper level daily is inspiring. I will never forget the moments of corporate worship at Kingdom Come and the fun events that ASG hosts. All of those things we do together as a community are opportunities for growth in many ways.

Community is essential.

I firmly believe that everyone should experience the power of community at some point in their lives, whether it’s with co-workers, classmates, or even a group of friends that does life together. It can teach us valuable things about loving people and open our eyes to how to do that genuinely and intentionally.

There is no other community I would rather be a part of than MNU. It’s been absolutely incredible and I can’t wait for the years to come. I truly love it so much!

-KT

Samantha Moore

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January 20, 2015

Last Semester Ever!

January 20, 2015 | By | One Comment

Guys, this is really my last semester ever..

Not sure if I should be happy or sad about this. I have to find a big girl job and can’t skip class anymore. On the plus side, I am going to California tomorrow to meet with all the Student Body Presidents from all the other Nazarene schools to discuss topics students face at each of our schools. I also get to go surfing, so that is a plus! I will be posting a lot of pictures on Instagram so make sure you follow us @mnublogs

We did a Welcome Back Week from Winter Break which consisted of: Tuesday was unlimited bowling, laser tagging and put put at Incredabowl, Wednesday was Late Night Breakfast with pancakes and tater tots and Thursday was Smoovie Night where we watched Mosters University in the Library and drank Smoothie King Smoothies. It was a blast!

meg smoothie king softball girls lauren and josh

Also, keep posted on my blog because another one of our bloggers Katie and I are going to do a blog or a vlog together very very soon!! You won’t want to miss it.

Haley Raydo

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January 20, 2015

Word of the Year 2015

January 20, 2015 | By | No Comments

Hello friends

This year is kicking into full swing already, classes at MNU are hitting the gas pedal hard.  I think that gets me easily distracted.  I focus all my attention on finishing this and studying for that– I sometimes  get so caught up and before I realize it it’s April and the end of a semester!  So I choose to be intentional at the beginning of the year.  Our church members (Cross Points Church) every January choose one word as a theme for his or her year.  After prayer and asking, the idea is that the Holy Spirit would lay an impression on a particular word.

It is pretty interesting to look back at the end of the year and see what the Lord did.  A couple of years ago mine was trust, and that year just happened to be a year full of the biggest changes!  I really did need to trust that year (as I do every year).

This year I found my word a little different.  I do these devotional plans and it seemed every day I had a verse with the word joy, or the idea of joy, located somewhere in my reading.  I didn’t even think about that being my word until I was driving one day and I recalled a verse I had read earlier that week, “In my presence there is joy.”  Psalm 16:11.  

So I chose the word joy.  I am not exactly sure what the Lord will do in my year, I don’t know how He will use joy in my life, but I know He will work if I take a step to be intentional.  So I’ve decided to focus on that verse and to be intentional about being in His presence.

Another verse I’ve been leaning on is “…but joy comes in the morning.” Psalm 30:5.  I also have chosen to be intentional about this verse- yes that means super early mornings once a week for me. I am not a morning person, but I believe as I sacrifice the Lord will move and meet me.  He promises joy, and I want that joy.

I say all this to challenge you.  Maybe you’re struggling with your relationship with Christ getting dull (I’ve been there too many times), maybe you’re looking for a new challenge, or maybe you would like to do something special this year, try it!  What is the worst that could happen?  For me, getting up super early one morning a week.  Trust me I will survive.  I challenge you to begin asking the Lord for a word and possibly a verse to accompany it!  Lets be intentional in 2015!

Thanks for stopping by!

Haley