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Academics - 2/7 - MNU Blogs

Katie Linsey

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December 16, 2015

My Favorite Memories From This Semester

December 16, 2015 | By | No Comments

As the semester comes to a close, I’ve been reflecting on my favorite memories of sophomore year so far.

The first thing that comes to mind is the trip I took to Colorado over fall break. I went with my friend Christen and we stayed with an amazing family while we were there. Christen and I explored Colorado Springs, hung out with horses, watched some Royals baseball, and went to New Life Church.

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Speaking of Royals baseball, another one of my favorite memories is when the Royal’s won the World Series… and every game leading up to that. My friends and I changed the building “Metz” to “Royalz” during the postseason, which was a fun prank that even landed me some extra credit in a class. ūüėČ

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Photo courtesy of Haley Adams

Another memory that I definitely won’t forget is the semester long project I had to do in Promotion Management. I was paired with Britney, Brandon, and Kacie. We had to create an Integrated Marketing Communications plan for the MNU Admissions Department. Specifically, we re-designed SCOUT. After that project, I was offered an internship with the Admissions Department to help launch the new SCOUT idea and also help plan other events.

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This semester, I joined the newspaper editorial staff as Video Editor. I will always remember my time with the people who have become some of my closest friends this semester: Morgan, Sydney, Wyatt, Josh, and Robbie. I will also remember when I showed up to the first meeting, not knowing anyone, and the first thing the editor-in-chief said to me was, “You post too many selfies on your Facebook with Sonic cups.” I’m gonna miss ya, dad.

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Photo courtesy of Joshua Brisco

Relating to newspaper, I enjoyed Josh Meme Thursdays, because that meant I had an excuse to find a strange picture of Josh and post it on his timeline.

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The sweetest memories I’ll have from this semester are the ones that I shared with my suite mates in Spindle 306. We did a lot of weird things this semester… like buy a Ken doll and name him Chad. And buy a furreal friend cat since we can’t have a real one (his name is Murray… yes, after Chad Michael Murray). We also drink sparkling grape juice out of wine glasses while watching One Tree Hill. And¬†ride Razor scooters around the parking lot at midnight. We love big blankets, Chick-fil-a, HGTV, and each other.

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So, that’s my semester in a nutshell. I’ve been blessed with incredible co-workers, professors, roommates, and friends. I’m so thankful for all of the opportunities that MNU has provided me.

Here’s to hoping next semester is even better. :)

-KT

 

Isaac Walker

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December 11, 2015

It’s OK To Feel Down Sometimes

December 11, 2015 | By | No Comments

Hey friends!

So I wanted to talk about this during mental health awareness week but I obviously missed that chance, but I think that I can tie the subject in pretty well to this upcoming week.

“But Isaac! ¬†What are you even talking about?!”

I’m glad you asked! ¬†I am talking about depression.

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“But Isaac! ¬†How does this subject tie into this upcoming week?!”

Ok, calm down I’ll tell you.

Finals week is stressful.  For some people, probably more than you think, it is a make it or break it time.  For some people, these tests are a matter of pass or fail.  This can put a ton of pressure on one person.  This school is a pricey place and failing a class means you have to take it again, and that means paying again.

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This kind of pressure can mess with a person’s emotions for the worse. ¬†Especially someone who is more prone and susceptible to depressive tendencies. ¬†There are lots of things that can cause or poke at someones depression.

There can be biological or genetic things.  It can run in the family or someone can be on a certain medication that can worsen things.  There can be psychological factors or even environmental things.  And that is how this ties in.  The things I mentioned above are definitely environmental factors.

Something else that can be an external trigger is the work load that tends to pile up on students. I am sure you all know that things can pile up fast.  Especially if you are  a procrastinator like me!  For someone with depression or depressive tendencies, this can cause them to shut down.

Depression is the most common mental disorder in the United States.  Females are more likely to suffer from depression than males are.  As of now, the average age of diagnosis is about thirty two years old, but youth are definitely known to suffer from it.  And I think that as mental health is becoming something more and more people talk about, more people are going to be diagnosed and helped at a sooner age now.

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That leads me on to my next point.

“But Isaac! ¬†How do I know if someone I am close to is suffering from this?!”

Good question.  There are signs you can be aware of.

A lot of the information I am presenting can be found in the website for the Nation Institute of Mental Health.

So back to the signs.  It can be a little tricky because there really are not universal signs.  It affects everyone differently.  But there are some common signs/symptoms.  They include:

  • Feelings of anxiety, sadness, or a hollow feeling that won’t leave.
  • Eating a ton, or losing your appetite.
  • Sleeping a ton, or not being able to sleep.

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  • Having a bad memory, and not being able to concentrate.
  • Losing interest in the things you once enjoyed.

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You can view the full list on their website.  But as you can see there, there is a wide range of signs.  Some that are even the opposite of each other.

Well friends!  I am glad I could share this with you.  This is something, for whatever reason, I have been wanting to talk about for a while.

Until next time friends!

Katie Linsey

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December 11, 2015

Creating an Integrated Marketing Communications Plan

December 11, 2015 | By | No Comments

For the past few months, I’ve been working on a semester long project for my Promotion Management class with a few teammates.

The assignment consisted of creating an Integrated Marketing Plan for the MNU Admissions Department. Specifically, we were supposed to create a plan to market the current SCOUT events that MNU holds.

It was crazy. We had to conduct our own research and think of every possible way to market high school students for SCOUT.

I say that it was crazy, and it definitely was, but it was also super fun and interesting. That was my first time doing a Marketing Plan, and the fact that it was going to be presented to an actual client made it even more real. Doing this project gave me affirmation that marketing is something that I’m passionate about. I could totally see myself in a marketing career someday, thanks to this project.

There were 7 teams that were “competing” to be chosen by the client as the plan that is actually used for SCOUT in the future. While I say we were “competing,” it didn’t really feel like that, because every team brought great ideas to the table. In that sense, everyone was a winner. :)

My team was chosen to present to the client, along with another team, which was so nerve-wracking but also exciting. After both teams presented great research and recommendations, the client chose my team as the one that they implement starting next semester.

Next semester, I’ll be working as an intern in the MNU Admissions Department to help plan the changes happening with SCOUT, and also do some general event planning.

I’ve loved the “real world” experience that MNU offers in the classroom. I’ve learned so many practical things, and also built up my resume pretty well with all these projects I’ve had to do. ūüėČ

The countless hours I spent with my teammates, Brandon Gaines and Britney Lewis, were not wasted. I believe that project helped me understand what marketing is all about. There’s so much that goes into it, and now whenever I see an advertisement, I can’t help but analyze it. ūüėČ

If you’re considering majoring or minoring in any part of business, I totally recommend it. Especially at MNU, the professors are incredible and know what they’re talking about. They do a fantastic job of being relevant and preparing you for the “real world.”

-KT

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My teammates and I after we found out we won.

Mackenzie Theiler

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December 5, 2015

Fall Semester Is Almost Over ūüďö

December 5, 2015 | By | No Comments

There are only two weeks left of our fall semester. We call this period of the semester “crunch time.” This is where a lot of students are trying to do anything and everything to get their letter grade from a B to an A; or for those students struggling to pass that tough class, with a C or better. This is when, students start asking their professors for extra credit, or if there is anything else they can do to get their grade up.

A biology professor of mine, ounce said . . .

“Why would I trust and spend my hard earned money on someone who ‘half-worked’ their way through class and cheated on exams, just to get by? This student who, half-work’s their way through their degree only, ‘half-knows’ their field of study. Would you have faith in that person to be able to preform at the highest level of their job?”

An example this professor used, was a doctor . . .

“Lets say, you need surgery or medical attention of some kind, and the doctor YOU receive, ‘half-worked’ his way through school. As he examines you, he has to google, what it is that could possibly be wrong with you; or he has to look up, what and how much medication, he should give you. This doctor probably did not try very hard in his undergraduate and/or graduate classes. Two, he probably only majored in this field of study for the good pay.”

He is simply stating that the field of study you are majoring in, you should known like the back of your hand, without having to look it up. It should be second nature to you. Find something that is exciting to you, that you can wake up every morning 9 times out of 10, and be excited about what you are studying/majoring in, and one day do for work. If you are majoring in something that doesn’t excite you, then, maybe you should find something that does. At the end of the day, your grades really do matter.

Most internships look at your grades, to see what kind of student you are. They want to know how serious you are about your field and if you truly want to preform well in this field. Your grades reflect that. I understand not everyone is perfect, but if it looks like you are giving it your all, it will show.

After you receive your degree and have worked internships, you are now ready, to be hired by the company or facility you want to work for. They look more at your internships, rather than your grades, because they want to see if you have work experience, in that field or in fields related to that. Most students do not realize, and I believe this is the point, my professor was trying to make, if you have good grades, you have a good work ethic, if you have good work ethic, then the your employer can count on you to get things done. If you have okay, but not good grades, you may have a good work ethic, but just not try as hard; so, you may do well but it is harder for you to get things done.

With all this being said, YOUR GRADES are important. The amount of effort and care you put into them reflect, your determination and dedication to your major and field of study. Find something exciting and interesting to learn, that you can be proud about!


 

Facebook: /kenzie.theiler
Twitter: @kenzietheiler
Instagram: @kenzie_theiler

Renee DeVault

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November 23, 2015

Success Mushroom

November 23, 2015 | By | No Comments

I can’t sing. I am not a musical person. My friends are musical people but I was not given that gift.

I can art…sometimes. People tell me I can art but I won’t attempt to draw something that I’ve never drawn before because people might look at it and realize I’m not very good at arting after all.

I am as good of a Christian as I am ever going to be. I have a certain ability to understand and experience God and I should be content with where I am.

These were statements that I believed about myself about a week ago which I am currently being forced to question due to Dr. Hayse’s annoying habit of actually making his students think.

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In Honors Seminar we are reading Mindset by Dr. Carol Dweck in which she asserts that qualities such as intelligence, artistic ability, athletic ability, leadership, and relational ability are not fixed, something one has a certain amount of or none of, but are rather able to grow and develop in a person.

She calls this the Growth Mindset.

Basically if I believe that I am fixed with a certain amount of smart then I will back away from anything that would be challenging because failure would mean a forced identity redefinition. However, in my growth mindset, I see my intelligence as something I can grow by challenging myself, seeking to collaborate with others, and working my butt off.

The book helped me to realize that in the area of intelligence, I was following right along with the growth mindset. If I had read only the first three chapters I would have been totally fine.

But Dr. Hayse made us read the whole book.

The rest of it went on to say that the idea of seeking new challenges, collaborating, and having a good work ethic could be applied to sports, art, music, management, parenting, and teaching.

I was caught in my “I’m not good at music” mindset and despite having a beautiful guitar and a love of music, have stopped trying because I believed the amount of musical talent I had was all I will ever have. If I believe I can grow this ability by challenging myself, asking my musical friends for help, and working at it, perhaps I can enjoy playing again.

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Probably the most fascinating aspect was her thoughts on relationships. I’ll use Quinn (Quinndonesia, Quinnifer Aniston, Bi-Quinning, Quinntervention, To inQuinnity and beyond, the Quinncredible Hulk) as my example.

If I believe that relationships are either good or bad then the moment Quinn and I have a fight I would think that our relationship was inherently bad and thus would avoid any and every possible disagreement for fear of proving our relationship wasn’t as “good” as I had thought.

She called out fairy tales for making “good” relationships look like if they weren’t “meant to be” then they were bad. While I believe that it is true that God has people planned for us to marry, I don’t want to get trapped into thinking that¬†the relationship with my God ordained man will be perfect.

With a growth mindset for relationships, disagreements and fights are seen as opportunities for improvement.

If I have a fixed mindset I may think that some annoying habit Quinn has is unfixable and thus a deal breaker while a growth mindset would refuse to define Quinn by this hypothetical habit and be willing to communicate my feelings about it.

I can’t¬†cognitively imagine having a relationship with anybody without this mindset yet I’ve fallen into the trap of it several times. Luckily by the grace of God and Quinn a fixed mindset has not prevailed.

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The book did not address spirituality but I feel as though I must because it is the area in which it hit me the hardest. I was raised in a Christian house, went to every Sunday school, every VBS, interned at my church three times, and now am a Theology major. Despite all of this I catch myself feeling so depressed about my spiritual life sometimes.

After reading this book, I began to wonder if I think of my Christianity as something fixed. “I can only experience God so much” or¬†“I can only understand so much of the Bible”. If I start letting myself think “I’m about as good as I can get” then I stop trying to get better, stop digging, stop looking for challenging material and stop asking God to come into my life.

I don’t want to get stuck in that mindset.

I want to want to grow. I want to seek new ideas and a deeper experience. I¬†don’t want to be¬†afraid to dive into difficult ideas in the Old Testament or spend hours of my day in prayer.

I don’t want to view others as judging if I am a good Christian or not. I want to view people as allies, fellow travelers in mutually helpful relationships.

I think that is the point of me being in the Honors Program: to grow an intellectual passion for learning, not only in academics but in all areas of life.

To relate it to video games: you have to actively seek the growth mindset mushroom in order to grow to your full potential, and even when you fail and feel small again, be willing to keep seeking again.

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What I’m praying for this week:

That a growth mindset will be fostered in both my own life and in the lives of others in regards to passionate intentionality in walking with Christ. We can decide to give all we can to growth in Christ with the knowledge that where we are not isn’t where we are condemned to always be.

 

Hailey Kendrick

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November 20, 2015

Terms You Learn in College

November 20, 2015 | By | No Comments

Last week it dawned on me that my vocabulary has recently expanded. Upon coming to college, there are several new terms that I’ve had to learn and use in my every day vocabulary. I wanted to share those with you all in hopes that you don’t have to stare blankly back at those would use them on you in your years to come.

Love Language: This is the verbal and nonverbal communication between you and your significant other in which you express how you feel.¬†I’d never heard anyone say this until this year…and now everyone does.¬†The hard part is everyone has a different way of expressing that they love you. For some it’s time, others it’s gifts…so on and so forth.

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Final Exam Schedule:¬†You actually have a set schedule for when you take each final AND this is decided by the university AND it’s probably not the normal class time.¬†This is new to highschoolers. When finals come, there will be a totally different schedule for when you’re allowed to take them.

 

 

Chapel Points: Spiritual formation credits that you have to complete. You must have 40 points each semester. Period.

Mark Hamilton is my academic advisor.

Mark Hamilton is my academic advisor.

Academic Advisor: This is basically your new best friend. Get to know them so they can best help you in your academic needs. This is the person in charge of your major and you will meet with each other to help plan your schedule.

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Kingdom Come:¬†Once a month, on a Tuesday, there is another chapel opportunity. It’s a late night chapel service that serves as a communion service for anyone and everyone. It can be more hype than regular chapel and is a blast to attend.

 

No, but really?

No, but really?

 

 

Twirp:¬†Whaaaaaat? This is the girls-ask-the-guys out dance. That’s right ladies, go get your men!

 

 

 

 

legendsLegends Village West:¬†If you’re from the area, then you know. If you’re not from here, you might be confused. Legends is the outdoor mall in Kansas City. I worked there for 3-4 years…so don’t expect parking on weekends. It’s fun and has lots of things to do!

Registrar: These are the college officials that are responsible for your schedule. Their office is located in Lunn (then take a right).

CLEP Tests: It’s this magical thing where if you’re smart, have an extra $100, you can pay to take a test. If you obtain a certain grade, then BANG, you get the credit for that course and DO NOT need to actually take the course. Magic.

Isaac Walker

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November 6, 2015

Stress Is Stressful

November 6, 2015 | By | 2 Comments

Hey friends! ¬†So school is stressful…That is just a part of being a student! ¬†Deadlines, group projects, sports, work, and trying to maintain a social life can be next to impossible to balance. ¬†All of those things are very important in the life of a student and at times, one has the highest priority. ¬†When they start to conflict, that is when life gets stressful. ¬†Remember though! ¬†Everything will be alright! ¬†I have some tips to ease your stress when things get hectic.

Go on a walk

Walk in the fall

The weather is starting to get very beautiful.  It is not too hot outside or too cold.  The temperature is perfect and relaxing.  Go out side and walk around for 10-20 minutes.  There are some nice walking paths around campus.  There is even a nature, prayer walk here on campus.  Even go out and do your homework outside!

 

Read a book

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Reading can be a great escape.  It momentarily takes you to another place in your mind.  The book I am reading currently is authored by my favorite YouTuber at the moment.  It is a compilation of hilarious stories from her life.  This definitely works for me.

 

Listen to music

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My favorite music to listen to when I am stressed out and am looking to relax is instrumental music.  Bethel music has two instrumental albums out that are amazing.  I also like to listen to movie soundtracks.  It Follows and Her have very good instrumental soundtracks.  Spotify also has some great playlists for instrumental songs.

 

There are also a few things you can do that can lessen the amount of stress that builds up.

Stay on top of your tasks

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Use a daily planner. ¬†They can be very useful. ¬†They help you remember what your assignment is and also when it is due. ¬†But if you are anything like me, you use your planner like a boss at the beginning of the semester and by the end of the semester, you forget you even have a planner! ¬†Don’t do that! ¬†Learn form my mistakes.

 

Prioritize your tasks.

Priorite

Along with using a planner, prioritizing what you have and want to do is very helpful.  What is due sooner obviously has top priority, but be sure to make time for friends, family, and fun things!  You are only in college for so long.  These are the best years of our lives!

 

I guess what I am trying to say is that you are going to be alright and everything is going to work out just fine! ¬†I gave you some tips on how to destress yourself and how to lessen the amount of stress that builds up. ¬†People are there for you if needed! ¬†Come find me too if you need someone to talk to! ¬†College is a great time! ¬†Enjoy it while it lasts! ¬†Don’t let stress ruin it for you.

Until next time friends!

Hailey Kendrick

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November 3, 2015

What’s a day in college look like?

November 3, 2015 | By | No Comments

college life

It’s November? It’s November!

Time to schedule classes for next semester… already! Upon planning my new schedule, I realized a typical college daily routine will change semester to semester. So I wanted to illustrate to you all what your schedule MIGHT consist of going day to day. (Now let’s remember that I’m taking 16 credit hours and working full time. This might not be what YOU end up doing.)

Morning Routine:

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I wake up around 7:30am, as a commuter I leave at 8:20am for my 9am class. Depending on the day, I might eat breakfast, spend a solid amount of time looking through news articles on my phone, and maybe print out a last minute assignment before driving to good Ole Olathe; all the while singing in my car.

Classes:

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On Monday, Wednesday, and Friday I have public speaking at 9am, followed by freshman seminar at 10am (which is now over), then old testament at 11am, followed by my lunch break. Most of the time I will go buy an over priced salad from Dewey’s Cafe (inside the library) and eat while I study. Finally, I arrive to composition 1 in a food coma at 1pm. Tuesday and Thursday I have introduction to human communications at 12:15pm and digital media following that. BUT! We can’t forget chapel on those mornings as well. This semester I had 16 credit hours (which is how many you really need to take to graduate in four years, most of the time.)

Afternoons: 99.8% of the time, I have work at 2:30pm. This means I leave comp 1, head straight to my car, and go to work until close. I’ll study during my lunch break¬†typically; and if I don’t have work, I’ll go home and write/edit this vlogs/blogs for you all.

Evenings: During the eventful weeks of the Trailblazer, I’ll spend my evenings in Dobson’s computer lab working on the layout. The evening is the typically study time for me and when I prepare my work for the next days classes.

Night Routine:

 

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Photo credits to Buzzfeed.

If I closed at work, I’ll get home around 9:30pm. I will probably eat, shower, and simply watch Netflix. Not much homework gets done on the evenings that I close…I’ll be honest.

Semesters to come…I’m the Full Time Assistant at work now! That’s right guys, I officially got promoted yesterday. I tried to make my schedule more accommodating for that. MWF I’ll only have one class and they’re at 6pm. Tues-Thurs, I’ll go to class (and chapel) from 8-1 and then I’m home free! I’ll take 1 online class, but still maintain my 16 credit hours.

Being a smaller university it is important to note that we only have X-amount of opportunities to take each class. It’s typically only going to be offered a few times; especially when you get into the upper level classes of your major. For me, this means taking summer classes, and working split shifts at my job, and working hours in a sorta-kinda flexible schedule with it all together. It is totally possible to get in the classes you need, but you need to be determined.

On a side note, this past weekend the ROYALS became WORLD CHAMPS, it was HALLOWEEN, and I had the weekend OFF! So I combined a series of Snapchat stories to give the opportunity of showing the best 10 second moments throughout the weekend…and I’ll post it later tonight!

and with that, I will see you tonight.

Isaac Walker

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October 30, 2015

What Is The Point Of A Dry Campus?

October 30, 2015 | By | No Comments

Hey friends!  This weekend is Halloween for those of you who do not know.  I am not really sure how you possibly could not know that.  But as long as I can remember, Halloween has not been on a weekend for a long time.  So I am sure there are going to be some crazy college Halloween parties.  Parties full of people dressed up in insane costumes pretending to be someone or something else just for the night.   And you know what college parties means.  Alcohol.

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Now, MNU is a dry campus.  It is against the rules to have alcohol on campus and to even go out and consume alcohol.  The opinions on this are very mixed.  Here I will be discussing the subject.  I will give the opinions of others (who will remain anonymous) and then my own opinion.

MNU obviously holds the same stance on alcohol that the Nazarene church holds.  The Nazarene church does not see alcohol as a bad thing but we should still be abstinent from it because we do not want to cause our brothers and sisters to stumble and fall.  We want to avoid tempting others who may struggle with addiction.  If I were to drink in a public setting and someone with an alcohol problem saw me then decided to drink, would I be responsible for what they do after that point?  The Nazarene church believes that I would.

I totally understand what they are saying too. ¬†We need to be there and take care of others who are struggling with any type of issue. ¬†And even though that is what our school thinks, I have talked with a few other students who don’t necessarily agree with that view on alcohol. ¬†I have heard of people who have gotten caught with alcohol on campus. ¬†They also were the legal age to drink. ¬†The consequences in my opinion outweigh the benefits of drinking here on campus. ¬†You can get a pretty steep fine and even sent to AA in some cases.

But maybe living on a dry campus is not that bad of a thing after all.  When alcohol is stripped from a campus, it is a whole lot easier to keep it looking nice.  There will not be any raging parties that happen on campus.  That in turn keeps that dorms from getting destroyed from them.  There will not be any trash, like beer cans, scattered across the lawns of campus.

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Students also have a better chance of doing well in their classes.  Without alcohol, there are less opportunities for them to be hungover the next day during their classes.  And it takes away one more distraction when homework needs to be done.  I know I do not need anything else to distract me from doing my work!

Being on a dry campus also gives students better opportunities to be more involved with campus life.  Heavy drinking, which is done a lot on wet campuses, really is not the most healthy thing for your body.  It can actually be pretty detrimental to your health.  That makes it a little difficult to participate in sports.

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And now I know that I am making alcohol seem like a terrible thing.  Everyone has their own opinions on it and everyone has experienced it differently, whether it was negatively or in a positive way.  But as long I am on campus, I am going to follow the rules regarding alcohol and I encourage everyone to do the same!  Because, no harm can come from not drinking alcohol.

Until next time friends!

Renee DeVault

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October 26, 2015

Don’t Go as God for Halloween

October 26, 2015 | By | No Comments

Fall break was this week. I vowed to do two things

  1. To kickstart a revival of my bible reading habit
  2. To get all of my homework done so I could bask in a glorious no-homework, stress-free beginning of my week

Let’s just say God may be happier regarding my fall break reading habits than my professors. I didn’t get much homework done. I read my bible and hung out with my friends doing¬†caffeine induced non-study study parties, mall trips, movie nights,¬†and listening to music.

In communications studies there is a concept called “reframing” in which the words chosen to describe something effect how one perceives it or acts towards it. So instead of saying “I slacked off and hung out with friends and read my bible instead of my textbook”…I’ll say “I spent Fall Break forming meaningful relationships with both humans and the almighty” which causes me to think better of myself than I probably should :)

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I don’t know if you have ever had this happen to you, but sometimes when I read the Bible God smacks me in the face with something and no matter where I go it follows me. I believe God has to do this to me because I am stubborn and often refuse to listen to what I need to hear the most.

The phrase of the weekend for me seemed to be “the fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge.” This is the beginning of Proverbs 1:7 in the NIV. Other translations substitute knowledge for wisdom but something about the word knowledge stuck with me better. Being a college student I am pretty much a knowledge leech, just frantically soaking up anything I can get from my professors, friends, and random internet literature.

Later in Proverbs 2:1-5 Solomon writes that the fear of the Lord comes from¬†storing up¬†the commands of God in us, attempting to understand them, and earnestly seeking further understanding of them. I had never thought of “the fear of the Lord” that way. But, since I didn’t want to write a paper and I had a perfectly good cup of hot apple cider already made and sitting on my desk, I decided to try it.

In Pentateuch with Dr. Edlin we’re studying the Exodus. I began to think about Moses standing before the God who brought the horrifying¬†plagues on Egypt, who killed the first born of all of their households, who parted the red sea and killed the Egyptian army. I thought about when Moses first came before God and had to remove his shoes. I thought about how, later, the Israelites couldn’t go on the mountain of God because God’s presence would destroy them. And in light of the acts of a terrifying all powerful God, I thought about the commands God gave his people and how immediately God’s people broke those rules.

This led me to think about the law in general, the rules we follow as Christians and I began to realize something about myself. I’m not afraid to sin. I know that sounds odd, but in that moment I realized I’ve never really felt the wrath of God when I’ve sinned. The ground has never swallowed me up, I have never been struck by lightning, my water bottle has never suddenly turned to blood, and I may have been attacked by a frog once but I do not believe that was retribution from God.

The grace of God is incredible. He is the same God today as he was in the Old Testament. My physical, sinful self should not be able to physically exist in the presence of God and yet I know his presence is with me wherever I go.

I take for granted the fact that I can just pray to him. I don’t have to climb a mountain, and almost more importantly for me, I don’t have to be Moses. I don’t have to be born of a Levite or brutally murder petting zoo animals in order to talk to God.

Reading the Old Testament and Proverbs always makes me feel humbled. I am living in the Kingdom of God, a new era of personal relationship with the Father. That is a huge gift. I was very convicted as to the level of my own personal reverence of God. He put me in my place as a puny little human and praying from that perspective feels much more natural to me. I guess the fear of the Lord helped me gain some knowledge about my own shortcomings in that department.

To throw one back to Communications, I had to reframe my concept of myself from “obligated to pray¬†to God” to “somehow miraculously able to talk to God”. My reality didn’t change, but the way I perceived it did and that in turn has effected how I’ve been praying.

So I am most in fear and awe of God while entering this Halloween season. Ghosts and Vampires are not real, but an all powerful being who can destroy whole nations with the words of his mouth is real. I’m just glad in his grace he has let me be on his side.

Two things I’m praying for this week

  1. Appreciation and acknowledgement of the sheer might and power of the God I am attempting to serve
  2. A humble and thankful heart for God’s grace and acknowledgment of my wimpy human status