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Katie Linsey

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April 23, 2015

MNU to Drexel, Missouri

April 23, 2015 | By | No Comments

This week, I had the privilege of making a video for the Nazarene district highlighting MNU’s time at a church in Drexel, Missouri. Watch this video to find out how MNU became involved, what it has meant for students, and how it’s impacted the community in the church.


-KT

Luther Okeyo

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April 1, 2015

The Track Season is Underway!!!

April 1, 2015 | By | No Comments

Well the track season is here and the HCA (Heritage Christian Academy, in case you didn’t know) Track & Field Team has been working hard getting ready for the upcoming season. We have about 40 kids running track this year and in the few weeks I have been able to work with them, I’ve seen amazing growth and last Thursday we had our first meet… The Sherwood Invitational which was in Creighton, Missouri and there were 6 other schools competing with us as well.

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The Varsity Squad (high school) did great. You could tell that we still had some work to do, but overall Coach and I saw some great potential and you already know that I’ll get them ready for the next meet.

You know what… I just realized that I haven’t even  told you guys anything about these guys. I will but first… I gotta be honest,coaching these has been such a blessing. It is awesome that I am able to pass on the little that I know about track to these kids. They are everything a coach would want in athletes. they work hard, they listen (well most of the time), they want to get better and are always willing to learn. Despite all these positives, there is one big negative, (well it wouldn’t be as fun if it was good all the time) they do whine a lot but what do you expect from and I’m willing to put up with whining like it but  if they are going to give me their all when it comes time to compete.

Ladies and gentlemen, meet the head honcho, the boss lady, the lady with the master the master plan, Heritage Christian Head Track Coach Christen Moore.  I wish you could just sit and talk to her, she is a kind and gentle soul ( I know the picture doesn't look

Ladies and gentlemen, meet the head honcho, the boss lady, the lady with the master the master plan, the Heritage Christian Head Track & Field Coach, Christen Moore. I wish you could just sit and talk to her, she is a kind and gentle soul (I know the picture doesn’t show it but she really one of the kindest people I have ever met.) She has two kids who also run track for Heritage Christian and they are studs by the way, but they are in middle school and their first meet isn’t for another week. She is a nurse and and she teaches a class for other upcoming prospective nurses how to pass their nursing exams. Oh yea she also runs MARATHONS! Yea… I’m not kidding… marathons and she is going to be running at the Boston Marathon this year!

We were missing a couple people from our varsity squad due to other commitments and I’ll introduce you to them later but here are the members of the Heritage Christian Varsity Squad:

First of all we have our arguably two best athletes. They are actually playing two sports right now, they both also play soccer. Allan on the left and CJ on the right. Allan ran track last year and he primarily runs the short distance track events. He ran the 100, 200, and was apart of our 4x100 relay team. CJ has never ran track before but boy it sure didn't look like it. He balled out and Coach Moore and I are so excited to see him develop as we keep going through the season. Both of these guys did great and they made a lot of noise at the track meet so now we can't hid them from anybody anymore. Well so much for strategy

First of all we have our arguably two best athletes. They are actually playing two sports right now, they both also play soccer.

Allan on the left and CJ on the right. Allan ran track last year and he primarily runs the short distance track events. He ran the 100, 200, and was apart of our 4×100 relay team. CJ has never ran track before but boy it sure didn’t look like it. He balled out and Coach Moore and I are so excited to see him develop as we keep going through the season. Both of these guys did great and they made a lot of noise at the track meet so now we can’t hid them from anybody anymore. Well so much for strategy.

Here we have Ross and Mathew. They are our distance runners. They are a couple of quiet guys who just take their lunch pail to work everyday and get the job done, in a manner of speaking.

Here we have Ross and Mathew. They are our distance runners. They are a couple of quiet guys who just take their lunch pail to work everyday and get the job done, in a manner of speaking.

Ross on the left and Mathew on the right, both of these guys run track last year for HCA as well. Ross is a guy with a lot of potential, during the meet coach and I figured out that his best race is the 800 (2 laps around the track as fast as you can… yea I know it sounds terrible.) But he also ran the 400, was apart of the 4×100 relay team, and he threw discuss. This guy is just a jack of all trades. Mathew reminds me a lot of myself, he runs basically the same events that I did and he has the same body type as me. (Unfortunately he isn’t as funny as I am, but I’m nowhere near a survivalist like he is. I’m pretty sure if there was a zombie apocalypse or something this guy would know what to do.) Mathew came in second in high jump, but he also ran the 1600, 800 (he actually beat Ross… I smell a rivalry brewing!), and was apart of the 4×100 relay.

Here we have two members of the squad (#squadgoals, sorry I promised them I would put it in the blog) Katie aka "elbows" and Bonnie aka "cheeks". Unfortunately the other two members of the squad Annie and Abby (who are twins by the way) were on vacation in Florida at the time and couldn't be apart of the meet.

Here we have two members of the squad (#squadgoals, sorry I promised them I would put it in the blog) Katie aka “elbows” and Bonnie aka “cheeks”. Unfortunately the other two members of the squad Annie and Abby (who are twins by the way) were on vacation in Florida at the time and couldn’t be apart of the meet. All 4 members of the squad are all cheerleaders for HCA.

The squad is inseparable. You should’ve seen them when they all got together on Friday after the meet. It was ridiculous it was the twins were gone for like a month or something but they were really only gone like 5 days. I guess now I know the meaning of true friendship. They do everything together at practice and I mean EVERYTHING! They warm up together, run together, they all talk at the same time and can still carry a conversation, they even laugh at the same things, I’m always amazed at how in synch they all are. Anyway, Katie ran the 100, 200, 400, and threw the shot put. I call her elbows because when she ran she never moved them, to be honest it was really weird. In practice I kept screaming elbows at her so she would move her elbows and pretty soon the name just stuck as her nickname. If you’ve been paying attention you probably already guessed that Bonnie ran the EXACT same races that elbows did. I call her cheeks because she reminds of Alexis Pacheco who plays softball for MNU, who I sometimes baby cheeks, because her brother Kyle who used to attend MNU and I played football with… his nickname was cheeks. So now the nickname is going around.

Last but not least is Kelly aka Machine Gun Key (yea like that one guy). Kelly is stud and she has never ran track before this year. She plays basketball for HCA. I posed with her because she didn't anybody to pose for a picture with her eveyrbody was already taken but you know I got a fresh cut for the meet tho!

Last but not least is Kelly aka Machine Gun Key (yea like that one guy). Kelly is stud and she has never ran track before this year. She plays basketball for HCA. I posed with her because she didn’t anybody to pose for a picture with her everybody was already taken but you know I got a fresh cut for the meet tho!

Kelly is everything in a track runner I wish I was in high school. She is a leader, she always wants to learn more, she is constantly asking questions in order to get better. All while publicly stating that she HATES track, as matter of fact she DESPISES it. It’s amazing that she never ran track before. She won her heat in the 100 (and it wasn’t even close). She ran the 100, 200, she long jumped, and threw shot put. I called her Machine Guy Kelly cause she is rapid fire in everything she does. I’m so excited to watch her run this season.

Our next meet is actually tomorrow (aka Thursday, April 2) in Ottawa, Kansas for the Ottawa Invitational. I am not going to that meet, I’m staying behind to train the middle school kids. I’m bummed I can’t go but I get to run practice my way this time and I can’t wait to run these kids into the ground… Hahaha just kidding… or am I?

Oh yea… Happy April Fools Day.

Luther Okeyo

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March 25, 2015

Spring Break 2015!

March 25, 2015 | By | No Comments

So uh…. I’m not going to lie. I HAD AN AWESOME SPRING BREAK!!!! I mean sure I really didn’t go anywhere special or don’t anything really amazing. To be honest with you it was really just boring by spring break standards, but I can say for sure that I rediscovered my youth.

So what if I do have that aweseom spring break that most college students had. Hey I didn't spend too much money, do anything stupid and I still had a great spring break.

So what if I do have that awesome spring break that most college students had or even wish for. Hey I look at the positives, I didn’t spend too much money, I didn’t anything stupid and I still had a great spring break.

As you can tell from the big picture above the blog, I got really close to my inner child this past week. While actually doing a homework assignment for a class, I went into a crazy Hey Arnold binge and it was glorious. It should be expected and I’m not hiding it, my favorite is Gerald. Arnold’s best friend and all around baler extraordinaire . He’s bring the cool factor to Hey Arnold.

I mean look at him, he's a stud. That hair too... I mean there are no words to describe that hair.

I mean look at him, he’s a stud. That hair too… I mean there are no words to describe that hair.

Also, I rediscovered my love for one of the greatest shows of all time…

If you have not seen an episode of that 70s show... shame on you on. Thanks to ABC Family and Netflix, I fell in love with this show. It had everything the awesome catchy catchphrases, the basement meetings (you gotta watch the show to understand this one), the awesome  awkward romances. This show was amazing.

If you have not seen an episode of that 70s show… shame on you on. Thanks to ABC Family and Netflix, I fell in love with this show. It had everything the awesome catchy catchphrases, the basement meetings (you gotta watch the show to understand this one), the awesome awkward romances. This show was amazing. The show takes place in Point Place, Wisconsin, so you know they have to really think outside the box to make a boring place like Wisconsin fun. (Sorry to anybody reading this from Wisconsin.)

If I’m like anybody on the show, I’m like Hyde, just less edgy. Hyde is the black apple of the group. Like Eric Forman (you gotta watch the show) said, “Hyde… you’re the reason you we do so many stupid and senseless things.”

This describes Hyde perfectly....

This describes Hyde perfectly…

Even though Hyde is person I would love to be from that show, my favorite character on the show is Fez aka Wilmer Valderama.

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Hahaha I’m cracking up just typing this thing. Fez is an exchange student, but you never find out what country he came from. You really watch the guy grow through the show from awkward high schooler to a… somewhat awkward adult. Still Fez is a man of many talents, he is bilingual, a very talented dancer, and he is also a ladies man (I mean he dated Lindsay Lohan, yea he really dated Linday Lohan on the show… well the character she playing but still come on!)

My favorite episode is actually from the first season…(I know I’m really geeking out here, but I LOVE THIS SHOW!) Season 1 Episode 7, “The Disco Episode” where the gang goes to a disco. This is when we all learn that Fez is an amazing dancer.

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Here is a picture from that episode. Here you see Fez and Jackie getting down. Fez basically woos Jackie in this episode but he couldn’t close the deal. From this episode on I knew that Jackie and Fez were destined to be together.

It just only took until the finale till they were finally an item. Like almost 8 seasons later it finally happened but it did happen so I was right in the end.

It just only took until the finale till they were finally an item. Like almost 8 seasons later it finally happened but it did happen so I was right in the end.

The show also had big names in it…

You have Ashton Kutcher (Kelso), Mila Kunis (Jackie),  Laura Prepon (Donna), Danny Masterson (Hyde), & Wilmer Valderama (Fez).

You have Ashton Kutcher (Kelso), Mila Kunis (Jackie), Laura Prepon (Donna), Danny Masterson (Hyde), & Wilmer Valderama (Fez).

Here is the link to the disco episode on Youtube. I dare to watch and not laugh. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uXIC9RxO6Fk

Well that was bascially what I did on my spring break, sure it wasn’t glamorous but it was still awesome.

 

 

 

Luther Okeyo

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March 13, 2015

Do you even lift bro?

March 13, 2015 | By | One Comment

You know one of the best things about MNU is meeting new people and hearing the stories that brought them to MNU & how MNU has changed them. Well this story is one of my favorites. Ladies and gentlemen meet Janelle Schafer. I call her Ms. J. Ms. J is from Centennial, Colorado. She is also one of the strongest people you will ever meet, both physically and mentally. It would just take too long to describe Ms. J to you and I do not wanna set the record for the longest MNU Blog ever.

This picture perfectly describe Ms. J. She is an inhuman bundle of energy who can always get you to smile no matter what. This display that you're seeing here is something I have only seen Jangle do. It's called Koalaing, I've never been Koalaed but It does look kinda cool.

This picture perfectly describe Ms. J. She is an inhuman bundle of energy who can always get you to smile no matter what. This display that you’re seeing here is something I have only seen Janelle do. It’s called Koalaing, I’ve never been Koalaed but It does look kinda cool.

The best things about Ms. J (well at least for me) are her amazing determination and her ability to make everyone around her feel better with her boundless amount of energy. I can never stay mad around Ms. J, she always just knows how to make me. (To be honest with you it’s kinda wierd how she always does that.)

Ms. J is a woman of many talents. Apart from being a MNU cheerleader, she is also lifts weight competitively. She is the strongest woman (like literally I’ve never even seen anyone who can even come close to her in the weight room.) In the weight room at MNU there is a handwritten note that says, “Somewhere there is a little Chinese girl warming up with your max.”

I still remember the first time I saw this picture. It's kinda funny but it's also true. We don't really have to look at the picture anymore to see "a Chinese girl who warms up with your max" all you have to do is walk into the wieght room everyday and see it happen in real life (although I don't know if Janelle is of Chinese dissent or not.)

I still remember the first time I saw this picture. It’s kinda funny but it’s also true. We don’t really have to look at the picture anymore to see “a Chinese girl who warms up with your max” all you have to do is walk into the weight room everyday and see it happen in real life (although I don’t know if Janelle is of Chinese dissent or not.)

Ms. J is also really into cross fit and you can tell it has done wonders for her. She has also surrounded herself with people who push her to reach her goals. She wants to compete in the big ESPN national tournament. When she is with her squad, you immediately can tell that they are a close knit family plus they all look like they all should be a cover a fitness magazine.

Janelle and her squad. I mean look at them... you just see them on a magazine cover somewhere.

Janelle and her squad. I mean look at them… you just see them on a magazine cover somewhere.

You guys should see her in the weight room she is a monster, but she is always willing to help anyone who need it. I’ve asked plenty questions back when I was in there lifting with her about my form and technique. I can’t tell you how many times she has made the football team just stare in awe of her and the way she lifts. Even though they won’t say it, there are a lot of guys who wish they could be as strong her, I know I would love to be as strong as her.

Mrs. J and her lifting partner Garrick Sargento, they always lift together.  I don't think I've never not seen them lifting together. Garrick is her rock, her rival, and her best friend.

Mrs. J and her lifting partner Garrick Sargento, they always lift together. I don’t think I’ve never not seen them lifting together. Garrick is her rock, her rival, and her best friend. They are always pushing each other to reach new heights.

Last semester, Janelle represented the USA in Chang Mai, Thailand in the 4th annual World University Weightlifting Championship. Janelle and her team finished in 3rd place and got to explore Thailand a little bit.

Janelle Shafer in Thailand, represent the USA in olympic weightlifting. Her and her team got 3rd place.

Janelle Schafer in Thailand, representing the USA in Olympic weightlifting. She competed in

Here she is I guess trying to put a tiger... it's ok Ms. J I would be scared to pet the tiger too. First of all I wouldn't even be that close to thing, no matter how majestic it looks.

Here she is I guess trying to put a tiger… it’s Ok Ms. J I would be scared to pet the tiger too. First of all I wouldn’t even be that close to thing, no matter how majestic it looks.

If your reading this right now, I hope you guys get the opportunity to meet Janelle. There is no one else like her, she is a woman of many talents, and she burn with a passion that will take here to great places and help here accomplish amazing feats. I won’t surprised to see in ESPN one day doing something amazing and shocking the rest of the world, and I’ll just be sitting there like.. it’s about time that the world learned about Janelle and how amazing she is.

Luther Okeyo

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February 26, 2015

Livin’ that model Life… Well for about an hour…

February 26, 2015 | By | No Comments

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So uh… OK last week like the title says I was a model for about an hour. Well here is the story… My uncle is has a small photography business called MK Photography.

Here is my uncle Mike, his wife and my aunt Naomi and you guys have already met Lauren.

Here is my uncle Mike, his wife and my aunt Naomi and you guys have already met Lauren.

The coolest thing about my uncle, is that he is completely self taught. He taught himself how to use photoshop and things like that make his business. He does it all he take the pictures , he develops them, and if he could he would print the pictures. Now he is trying build his business from the ground up and it is amazing to see how high it grown. Now when he asked to be a “model” for his company of course I said yes. One, because I had never really done anything like this before, and two, I wanted to see how things would work out.

I'm not going to lie it was kinda weird taking pictures like that. Trying to look cool the whole time too, I mean it was definitely an experience to say the least.

I’m not going to lie it was kinda weird taking pictures like that. Trying to look cool the whole time too, I mean it was definitely an experience to say the least.

I still don’t know how I feel about this whole thing. You guys tell me.

You already know that I had to get the flat top going.

You already know that I had to get the flat top going.

Really need to hear some feedback… how do I look guy? Good. Terrible. Hilarious. You know what it doesn’t matter it’s growing on me.

Luther Okeyo

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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.

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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.

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..

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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.

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

Mariah McCommon

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January 6, 2015

January 5th, 2015

January 6, 2015 | By | No Comments

Hey guys. This post will be a very serious one and forgive me it’s long. As my fellow bloggers have posted already, the MNU community lost a beautiful young lady who was a bright star shining on our campus.

Personally, I didn’t know her but I have seen through her friends that she was an absolute joy to be around and from her pictures she was always smiling. Although I did not know her, I do know how this goes and my deepest empathies go out to the community.

Today is the day in which we are saying our “see you laters” to the beautiful Quincy and it also happens to be the day after a student from my high school was shot and killed by the passenger while driving his car. The suspect has not been found, but the intense search will not cease until he is found.

During my four years of high school, a total of six students died and since graduation, two more from the school. Freshman year, a girl on color guard and a spritely friend to many was killed in a car accident. Sophomore year, not long after her graduation, the Homecoming Queen, honor student, and Sunday School teacher was hit intentionally by a car and was raped during her final breaths. The summer before my junior year, a girl in my class thought to be at a dead end with her life and ended it. She was so sweet to me in a class we had together and she was much loved by her friends and family. My final year of high school was hoped to be the year without any tragedies… second semester, my best friend and I befriended a sophomore in our gym class. We all sat at lunch together and were always laughing. She was incredibly vibrant and her smile could light up any room she was in. That’s the way she lived; happy and care-free. She was unfortunately involved in a car accident and was instantly killed. Approaching the end of senior year, an intelligent senior was killed in yet another car accident along with her father as they were returning home from enrolling in college. On May 18th, 2014, another student felt like his life was over as well so he ended it. He had just graduated that morning along with the rest of us.

The community is still experiencing these kind of tragedies. A young sophomore this school year lost her battle with cancer. And yesterday, someone I graduated with was shot. It has been difficult to wrap my head around all of this and there are truly no words or answers to express what has been going on. Although my words have been depressing so far, ultimately I want to provide hope to whoever may be reading this.

This life is temporary, I think we all know that. But the sting of pain still remains as we experience loss and various kinds of heartache. It’s alright to feel pain and feel sad, but it’s important to not allow it to consume you. After all, Jesus cried too (John 11:35). Quincy and these other students would want us to be happy. I’m sure of it. The lives they led and faith they portrayed is something we can all learn from and work towards. I believe seasonal depression is a thing and that is something I’m currently trying to overcome. It doesn’t help that everything seems to happen in the dead of winter. The tragedies we experience in life seem huge while it’s happening and maybe long after they happen, but the good news is that God is still and always will be bigger than the catastrophe. Peace rests in my mind knowing that they all are smiling down upon us at the right hand of God Himself. How cool is that? They are with Him right now and we’ll see them again. In all of eternity, we are just passing through this life and it will soon be a simple blink of an eye. God promises us through His word that those who love Him will receive everlasting, life. In Revelation chapter 21 God says,

“God’s dwelling place is now among the people,
and he will dwell with them.
They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God.
He will wipe every tear from their eyes.
There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain,
for the old order of things has passed away.” (NLT)

Later in Revelation, God provides us with an epilogue that states,

“Look, I am coming soon! My reward is with me,
and I will give to each person according to what they have done.
I am the Alpha and the Omega, the First and the Last,
the Beginning and the End.” (NLT)

I hope and pray that God comforts those who have been affected by these sudden misfortunes. He welcomes those who are weary and burdened. As for me, my strength comes from The Lord and will guide me through with the help of the two extremely strong communities that I’m so blessed to be a part of. Thank you for keeping us in your prayers and continue to express all the love you possibly can to the people around you.

Verse

Mariah McCommon

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January 1, 2015

Home Sweet Home

January 1, 2015 | By | No Comments

Hey readers! I hope you had a very merry Christmas and Happy New Year and if you didn’t eat lots of food, you didn’t do the holidays quite right but that’s okay.

Break has already been flying by! I love being home and it’s nice to have an entire month to relax and be with family. Leaving my MNU friends was pretty difficult, though. I will admit I cried just a little bit. Actually a lotta bit but let’s not tell anyone. Me and my homies ate at Chick-fil-a right before we all headed home as a last hoo-rah before break which was nice.

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We call ourselves ‘The Blonde Quad’

I can actually say I’ve been somewhat bored over break and I haven’t been able to say that for the last 5 months. It’s like I appreciate being bored more now, but I miss being busy all the time too. Not being around people 24/7 is weird! I miss my roomy and realizing that my friends are all over the United States right now is scary to think about so I try not to think about it. Thank The Lord for cellphones and technology!

I love being home and attacked by my dog, Thor and clawed by my cat, Bella. No really, I missed it. They are soooo cute. If you don’t believe me, here’s proof:

THor
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I love my animals to death and I don’t know what I’d do without them! This Christmas, my sister and I received a lot of Frozen things. I could write a list of how much, but it’d be a long list. We got matching shirts with Anna and Elsa on them. Now, that may sound strange, but believe it or not, my little sis is a redhead just like Anna! Frozen happens to be both of our favorite movies cause it’s only the best movie ever made. I’m a lot like Elsa, and she’s a lot like Anna so it works out perfectly and is probable why we’re so obsessed with it. Unfortunately, I don’t shoot ice from my hands, but wouldn’t that be AWESOME?! Sometimes I pretend I do.

Amanda

We totally could pull off Anna and Elsa

My sister has been given the opportunity to perform in the Alamo Bowl down in Texas. She’s in the band as school and it’s quite the honor to be chosen to perform in the bowl. She is having a blast and I’m so proud of her. She will be playing her French Horn at half time of the K-State/UCLA game tomorrow night so if you’re not doing anything, be sure to check that out!

To wrap up, I just want to say that I hope y’all had the best Christmas and New Year ever. Enjoy the rest of break! Thanks for reading! :)