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Phillip Prado

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March 28, 2013

Hiking? In Tennessee? I think so :)

March 28, 2013 | By | No Comments

YES! It happened! Through Kairos, our wednesday night chapel service, we went hiking at Savage Gulch in Tennessee over spring break! It was a week of amazingness, let me tell you! I don’t even know where to start. There was hiking (obviously :P), beautiful scenery, amazing fellowship, and plus Savage Gulch is only 2 hours north of Nashville! So not only did we see some of America’s most amazing landscapes, but we also got the chance to see one of America’s best cities.  But before I get a head of myself, how about I start from the beginning?

So 7 am, Monday morning, we loaded up the vans to embark on a 9 hour drive to the city of Nashville, Tennessee where the beginning of our trip took place.  After a few restroom pit stops and a lunch break, we arrived in Nashville at around 3 or 4 in the afternoon.  After a little sight seeing, we stopped at a Nazarene Church where we would stay the first night before we began our hiking endeavors that Tuesday morning.  Later that night, we were taken deeper into Nashville to try out some of the cuisine they had to offer.  A few of us went to this chicken finger restaurant that had been made out of an old house, which was so fun to just be at because it was such a creative place, called “McDougal’s.”  I, honestly, do not think I have had better chicken fingers in my life. So if you are ever in Nashville, you HAVE to try this place! THEN, after we ate, we had the chance to go to this coffee shop called “Fido’s.” Now, there are two reasons I fell in love with this place: one I LOVE coffee (you could say coffee is some what of a passion of mine) and man did they have amazing coffee, and another thing I loved was that we were told that “Fido’s” was one of Taylor Swift’s favorite coffee shops in Nashville.  Now I don’t know about you, but I LOVE Taylor Swift.  Anyone of my close friends will tell you that.  I don’t know why or where it came from, but I do. So that was a really cool experience for me.

So the next night, after sleeping on a hard floor in the middle of a sunday school room, we woke up bright and early, separated into smaller groups, and headed out to Savage Gulch to begin out adventure.  Now I could talk your ear off about the next few days that we had experienced.  It felt SO incredibly good to get out of the classroom, and to experience something fun and new.  That’s one thing I love about MNU.  There are so many opportunities for us to get out in the world and to experience life.  This week was definitely a week I had the chance to experience life. I didn’t want to leave :\.

Now not all of this trip was “fun.”  There were some parts that were pretty…blahhh: sleeping in a tent with below freezing whether (it actually started snowing!), not being able to shower or change, eating dehydrated food, having to trek through ice cold water, carrying a 50+ pound back pack, etc.  It was pretty hard work at times, but overall, despite the little difficulties, I had one of the most fun times of my life.  I got to see intense valleys, some beautiful forests, I got to stand on the edge of some bluffs that were over a 100 ft in the air, and I got to witness several waterfalls, including one of the tallest waterfalls on the eastern half of the US: Fall Creek Falls, measuring in at 256 ft high. It was absolutely breathtaking seeing some of these things.  No picture that could ever be taken by anyone would do any of this landscape justice. In order to really understand you have to get out there and see it for yourself, not just  search on google, or see it in National Geographic, or read it on some college student’s blog, but go there, and be there, and stand in awe at how amazing it is. I couldn’t have had a better spring break!

If you want to learn more about these kind of events here don’t be afraid to ask! There are an infinite amount of students and staff here that are more than willing to keep you up to date, and let you in on some of our events and trips!

MNU is so awesome for letting their students get involved in things like this by teaming up with Kairos and College Church of the Nazarene (which is just across the parking lot where Kairos takes place).  I am so grateful that I am a part of a school that allows it’s students to go out and actually see what God has created.  I made such a great choice coming here, and I know any of you up-in-coming freshman will see you are making the right choice too.  And if you have not made your choice yet, stop looking! I guarantee you will love it here.  It may be a small campus, but it’s a big world, and MNU let’s it’s students be a part of it all.

IMG_20130322_134454Fall Creek Falls

IMG_20130322_134220Waiting To Begin our Hike

IMG_20130322_133852Pantheon Replica in Nashville

IMG_20130322_134914Part of the hiking path leading up to a waterfall

 

Cherith Campbell

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March 13, 2013

The one where MNU loves YOU!

March 13, 2013 | By | No Comments

I know that most of my posts have lots of humor and are light-hearted but this one is gonna take on a more serious feel about myself and the presence/impact of MNU in my life.

A week ago my great-granny died and there were a lot of emotions. Even though her dying was very sad, it was a celebration because we all know that she is in Heaven. When tragedy strikes it is always great to have people who care about you to help and comfort you. Being here on campus gave me such a great support system around me. My roommate and other friends on my hall all comforted me when we found out that she had passed and it felt so good to have them with me.

MNU is such a great place of community. There are so many people on campus that truly care about each of the students that go here. I continually was checked up on by multiple professors about how I was doing since the funeral. Going to any other school would provide professors that either had too many students to even know me personally or just don’t care in general. But here at MidAmerica the professors and staff and students all have such a sense of community and love for one another. MNU is such an amazing place to be.

Learn something new today:  The word koala is aboriginal for “no drink.” Koala get the water they need from their food.

* I love Koalas!

Phillip Prado

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March 1, 2013

Just Another Coffee Engulfed, Library Stationed, Book Digging Session

March 1, 2013 | By | No Comments

IMG_20130228_215145

It was a nice break while it lasted, but our snow days are officially over!  Now it’s back to the dreaded homework we have been putting off and the horrid tests coming up we neglected to study for.  The bustle of school is back and it is time to get into the common groove once again.  So it’s time to load up on coffee, hit the library, and dig our Pioneer noses in the books.

Now, during one of my coffee engulfed, library stationed, nose digging sessions….wait, I probably shouldn’t say nose digging should I? It doesn’t quite sound like what I am trying to say if you know what i mean. :\  What about nose booking??  Hmmm…nah.  What about book nosing???  Hmmm…nope.  How about dig booking???? Ugh that doesn’t work either!!  WAIT! Book digging?!  Well, that sucks too, but I guess that will have to work now won’t it?  So let’s start over, shall we?

During one of my coffee engulfed, library stationed, book digging sessions, I had another moment.  It’s one of those moments that hit me oh so often and I am struck by an idea or I become inspired.  I have blogged about a few in the past and I’m sorry if you don’t like them but I enjoy sharing what it is I am thinking so here it goes!

Lately I have been spending some of my time with someone in particular who I believe really needs a friend now.  He’s going through some things and I feel a calling to be there for him when he needs someone most.  Now, I’m not gonna say who this person is, or what’s going on in their lives but I will share my thoughts behind the situation.  I feel like God has asked me to reach out to this person in any way possible whether it’s staying up late and hanging out, inviting him to events and things around the school, or just being there when he needs to talk.  I have been doing my best to show him that not only I love him and care for him, but God loves and cares for him WAY more than I could ever dream!

So here I am, studying, when this person crosses my mind.  I start wondering how he’s doing and if he is alright.  And that’s when I begin to notice that not only have I been doing what I can to help him, but he is also helping me just as much.  He is showing me a way of caring for someone in which I really haven’t put into perspective before.  He is teaching me what it’s like to love and be loved simply for being a child of God.  This is even more true because we both have almost nothing in common.  I don’t hang out with him to gain anything or to profit in any way, and he doesn’t accept me because we have the same interests or share the same hobbies.  We merely grow together for one devouring, overpowering, and deep truth:  God created us both and the love he has for us is perfect.

Because of this person, I am looking at the world through new eyes.  I am beginning to see my professors, friends, co-workers, strangers and every one else in between the way I believe God sees us.  Since I work at a daycare, this is how I have looked at the children I work with already, but thanks to this person that I now call a dear friend I am beginning to bridge the way I see those kids to the way I see the rest of God’s creations.  This is huge to  me.  It is a point in life I think every disciple of Christ needs to come to in order to further their spiritual life. Christ is amazing and I have known that for some time now, but if it wasn’t for this school, and the people I have met here, I might not have begun to realize how infinite his perfection really is.

This school has allowed me to grow in so many ways it’s not even funny.  From the good times, to the bad times, MNU is playing a huge role in shaping who I am going to be for the rest of my life.  Whether it’s from the people, the classes, or even my personal relationship with God, I am learning what it means to be a true disciple of Christ here, and I am so thankful for that.  And anyone else coming to this school better hang on because MNU will take you on one heck of a ride!  But hey, don’t worry, no matter how bumpy the ride is I can guarantee you will be happy with how it ends up.

 

Allegra Vieux

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February 14, 2013

Webshow: Valentine’s edition

February 14, 2013 | By | No Comments

Happy Valentine’s day friends and followers!

My feelings are bittersweet as I upload this edition of my show.

Watch and you will find out why.

Andy Blum interview (kind of)

Happy Valentine’s day!

Over and out!

Cherith Campbell

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February 13, 2013

The one where the Kingdom came!

February 13, 2013 | By | No Comments

Hey everyone!

I hope your week is going well. Here at MNU it’s spiritual deepening week! Yesterday morning at chapel we had Dr. Green from Trevecca speak and he was very excited and enthusiastic about sharing with us how our faith should maybe be ‘childlike.’

Last night was KINGDOM COME! Kingdom Come is a monthly worship service and it is amazing. Students gather at Bell and just worship the Lord and partake in the Lord’s supper. This is probably my favorite event that we have on campus because God truly moves in every service and I enjoy every second of being there. There have been many times where the band has just kept singing and then many of us students stay to worship! Kingdom Come is such a great time to praise and pray and reflect alongside fellow believers and classmates.

This week is also VALENTINE’S DAY! Whether you have a special someone or not Valentine’s can be fun. My friend Hannah and I went around the ales of Walmart making fun of all of the cheesy Valentine’s gifts and it was a blast! But then the next day we went shopping on the Plaza for our Valentine’s date outfits. We have had such a fun week both making fun of the day of love and preparing for/looking forward to it. Yeah love is complicated and weird like that.

Well I hope you guys have a wonderful rest of the week. Have fun tomorrow–on a date or kickin it solo!

 

Learn some new things about Valentine’s Day today:  

– 15% of U.S. women send themselves flowers on Valentine’s Day.

– 189 million stems of roses are sold in the U.S. on Valentine’s Day.

– “I love you” in German is “Ich liebe dich.” (I learned this while living in Europe!)

– Men spend almost twice as much on Valentine’s Day as women do. This year, the average man will spend $156, while the average woman will only spend $85. :)

– More than one-third of men would prefer not receiving a gift.

 

Phillip Prado

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December 13, 2012

People

December 13, 2012 | By | No Comments

 

HEY GUYS!!! So this is the last MNU Blog I will post before the end of the semester :(.  But hey, its ok!! I’m not quite done yet AND we will all post a few times over break!  But as of now I have four finals down and only ONE more to go.  Finally I’m almost done!  This week has been something else, let me tell you.  So first of all, I have had five finals to get through and that has been CRAZY!  Studying was definitely NOT my focal point this week and I’m a little more unprepared than I would have liked to be.  So in this lesson of mixed priorities, there is a word of advice I have learned that I would like to give to any upcoming freshman: Make the best of your study time, no matter how easy the class is.  Trust me!  

This next semester is gonna be something else though.  I mean I know this will sound weird but I am really beginning to enjoy doing homework! What is wrong with me!?!  I have no idea!  I guess just the idea that I am preparing for the rest of my life has been enough motivation for me.  This isn’t high school anymore, this isn’t just something you have to try to get through, this is what we are doing to train us for the rest of our lives.  And this training is brutal!  SOOO many distractions and things are always there. This is the time of our lives we are taking to find ourselves and to really see who you are going to be for the rest of your life and that is really important to me.  I really do want to be prepared for my future: for my career, my family, and just for anything the world throws my way.  I really need to buckle down and focus in if I want to get this done right.

But on that note there’s another piece of advice that I myself am trying to filter through too:  Live a little.  This doesn’t mean party and go out and get crazy!  Just don’t be afraid to make relationships, ya know?  When you hear people talking about college what do they say?  They don’t talk about how great finals were, or how important the class work was to them.  I mean YEAH that’s important but people talk about the fun times the had, the love they shared, the friends they made, and the people that made a difference in their lives.  There was a reason that in the beginning God said “It is not good for man to be alone.”  We are built to be together, to be in fellowship, and just to love one another.  So no matter how important school is, no matter what you’re going though, just don’t forget to love people.  Because in the end, the people you shared your life with are going to be the most important things to you.  So whether you’re in high school, college, or working full time, don’t hold yourself back from the thing we were designed to surround ourselves with: people.  You can’t look back on a life full of love, happiness, and joy and feel regret.  God made us to be together.  So GO and BE TOGETHER!  We need to stop taking each other for granted and cherish our time with one another.  That time spent with people really is what makes everything worth it.  So study, laugh, have fun, just please don’t forget the one thing that is most important to every human being whether they want to admit it or not: To Love People.

Phillip Prado

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November 23, 2012

There’s Got To Be More To It.

November 23, 2012 | By | No Comments

There’s christmas lights up, the air is cold, the stores are beginning to supply their holiday sales; the Christmas season is almost here.  Now that Thanksgiving is officially over the winter spirit is beginning to kick in, don’t you think? There’s talk of presents and family gatherings; there’s Christmas music filling all of the department stores and mall outlets; you can almost feel the excitement.  What is it that makes Christmas stand out so much in the hearts of humans around America?  Is it Saint Nicholas and his little elves?  Is it the decorated pine trees or the vibrant wreaths?  Or is there something more to this time of the year?

As you know, it is called CHRISTmas for a reason.  This is the time of the year that we celebrate the birth of Christ the messiah, our savior, our father, our friend: Jesus.   But yet those of us who do not accept Him into their lives still feel the joy of this time of the year.  Why is that?  Why is it that almost nobody can escape feeling of the holiday spirit whether they like it or not?  The answer is simple:  there is no one on this earth that can escape the love of other people when it is as strong as it is this time of the year.  The love humans share for one another is inescapable, and all things good and loving can be traced back to God.  Everything good comes from the father.  So thinking in that sense it is safe to say that that’s why Christmas is so special to people:  it’s the one time of the year when we can all feel Christ’s love through one another.  But why can’t we, as Christians, do this all year ‘round?  How come we can’t share this spirit every day?

That’s our job:  to show the love of Christ inside and outside of CHRISTmas.  This is the time of year when we get a glimpse of real happiness and real love.  So I urge you to make that happiness about something other than just getting, and even giving, material things.  Don’t focus on this that will fade in time, but store your treasure in heaven, as stated in Matthew 6.  Jesus is your best friend, and He loves you so much that he died for you.  Yeah, yeah, I know hearing that Jesus died for you can be cliche at times, but it never loses its truth no matter how much it loses its sting.  No matter how many times we hear it, we need to resist hardening our hearts to it. This is the time of year we live, laugh, and love.  But what will you live for, laugh at, and what will you love?  I pray for everyone reading this to just keep Christ the focus of their lives, to live for Him, laugh with Him, and just simply love Him.  And if He isn’t the focus yet that He would become the absolute center of your lives. Just remember these few things:  There are many people in this world that love you;  God loves you, your friends and family love you, and even I love you. :)  It’s so easily to lose site of the most important things in a time of consumerism like Christmas.  So go and live like you are loved, because that my friends is the most important thing in the world.  Not getting presents

 

You are loved….

 

 

Phillip Prado

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November 16, 2012

God Loves Us All: Even The Children

November 16, 2012 | By | No Comments

Have you ever worked with children?  Do you have little brothers or sisters, have you babysat, or are you employed where you work with children?  If any of those are true than you know how rough kids can be.  All three of those are true for me.  I have three little sisters, I’ve babysat many times before, and I have worked at a daycare/preschool for almost two years now.  After working with children so much, I’ve gained a few life lessons that will probably stick with me forever.

I’ve learned that children, sometimes, just need to be alone.  I’ve seen countless times when a child has gotten into trouble and all they needed to do was just go and be by themselves but a teacher would try to continually confront the child about the situation.  All they need sometime is just to be by themselves.  I feel like that is the same for us.  We have all of these problems in our lives and we can’t just let go.  We have to confront it and make sure its all better but we sometimes we need to step back, relax, and let things go.  Or sometimes we are in a situation we can’t really handle and we need to just go be alone ourselves.  We need that alone time to let things go, relax, and just ask God to help us out.

Another thing I’ve learned is that working at a preschool is tiring.  Kids don’t listen 99.9% of the time, they always want to do there own thing, they think they know whats best for themselves, and they constantly hurt one another in striving to get what they want for themselves.  Now what if I took the word “kids” out of the beginning of that last sentence and replaced it with “people”?  It makes just as much sense half of the time doesn’t it?  There is not a huge difference between adults and children.  We think we can do everything ourselves, that we know whats best, but then God looks at us and tells us otherwise and we still don’t listen.  How can we possibly know whats best for us?  A lot of Christians know that we don’t know what’s best for us, yet we continually to neglect living like that.  We need to learn to let go and trust in God.

The most important thing I would say that I learned after working with kids is that sometimes, it can feel hard to love them.  I KNOW that sounds terrible but sometimes children can be really mean, they don’t listen, and they don’t want a thing to do with you.  I do love every one of the children I work with, don’t get me wrong, but sometimes the just get into so much trouble it’s crazy!  Then we have to discipline them, and then we have to tell their parents, and then we have to keep them from doing it again and it’s a never ending cycle of endless effort. This is the SAME thing we do with God.  We are childish sometimes.  We continually turn away from God and continually fall short.  Do you think God thinks that’s very fun?  Do you think He has fun constantly calling out to us and constantly seeing us get hurt or hurting one another?  It’s not, and yet He loves us with all of His heart.  There is no end to God’s love.  Working as a teacher has really opened my eyes to that.  God really does love us ALL!!  And that’s really been on my heart lately.

Working with children has definitely pulled me closer to God.  I can now see a SLIGHT glimpse of how God sees us sometimes (but of course I still can’t comprehend His thoughts or His love).  Even though I go home exhausted most every day, in the end it is worth it.  I get to see innocence at it’s finest, and it get to love that and allow it to be a part of my own life.

 

(sorry there’s no pictures, it’s illegal for me to have pictures of children from any public daycare/preschool service for anything outside of the daycare/preschool)

Joey Alligier

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October 8, 2012

“Hey, that was a great service at Building today!”

October 8, 2012 | By | 3 Comments

The congregating of Christ followers most likely started directly after the spread of Christianity in the first century. Over MANY years we have what we call church today. The beautiful buildings, sometimes testy air conditioning, hopefully comfy pews, potluck dinners, and outlandish youth group games are how the typical description of the church is perceived in typical minds and conversation. But, is that all we are? Are we defined by what we have and the look we give off? Have we become that superficial as a society? Now, don’t get me wrong, nice churches are most definitely a blessing from God. But if you dig deeper what really defines the church.

The church is the people, not the building. Now, there are some questions that arise with this statement. For me, thinking about this brought up the fact that in the Old Testament the church WAS the building and not so much the people. But why? In the Old Testament the church/ tabernacle had a Holy of Holies that was not for the common man to enter. This where God was; this is where the church was.

When Christ died, so did that. The Advocate ( Or in Greek, Paraclete <— I learned that in New Testament class) or the Holy Spirit changed the way things work. God is found in us. We have the opportunity to experience the power of Christ in our lives more than before. Now, this does not discredit church. We are still called to come together in Christ’s name! Plus, I mean who doesn’t love the wacky youth group games! Am I right or am I right?

The picture above was my church youth group on Sunday morning. I put it because my topic is church and what defines it, but mainly because it looks so sweet! We met in a building, but to me, many of those people I could experience the power of church outside that cramped room! I see God in those people more and more each day. That’s what it’s like here at MNU. Church could be the picture at the top or the one at the bottom; in a square with a fountain in the middle of downtown Wichita’s party scene blaring Jesus music, playing frisbee, talking to strangers, discussing life, and reading scripture. I could also experience church outside on the grass late at night or on my RA’s couch. To me, it’s beautiful that this whole campus is like a church. After all God shows up in more than a stained glass building! Matthew 18:20 says, “For where two or three come together in my name, there am I with them.” Now don’t get me wrong I believe God absolutely sees a congregation gathering to bring honor to His name on any given day! But as my pastor back home once eloquently stated, ” Sure you could go to church without members, you’d just end up saying ” Yeah, I went to building this morning.”.

In conclusion, I hope that this either opened your eyes to where or through who you could experience God. Never forget the way the church is talked about; the bride of Christ. And plus, why would Paul write letters to churches if they didn’t make a difference in life? As you go on with your busy day, take time to thank God for the gift of freedom, fellowship, and unfailing love he presents to us.

Keep on and keep God my friends,

Joey Alligier

Joey Alligier

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October 2, 2012

When You Got that Sista’ from Anotha’ Mista or that Brotha’ from Anotha’ Motha’……

October 2, 2012 | By | 4 Comments

What is family?

 

Classically, it is considered to be based of off lineage, blood, crazy Uncle Bert!

For me, family is something different. I am adopted by my Great Aunt, so while that is still blood and I do get a few of my quirks from her, it’s just always been different! And not a bad different whatsoever. I admire and love my mom more than anyone in this world. (I’m not just saying that because she’ll read this lol)

Growing up, my mom and sister were the biggest components of my life! Within our family, we were our own family. That’s where I found my worth the most, learned from mistakes, and found out who I was. I can still remember the Saturday mornings, the family vacations, and the random “Hookie Fridays” that would end the week off right!

Now, for some, family isn’t as pleasant. Does that mean they have no family? NO. In the past few years while I was “too cool” for family I found that family is found less in blood and more in sweat and tears. Family is when you are willing to put everything into a relationship with another human being. It’s about the fights, the great nights, the “We need to talk” talks, the accountability, the good and bad that molds who you become.

The main person I can think of while I am writing this is my youth pastor! To preface the impact this man had I my life, I feel compelled to share that I have never had a father figure. After a youth camp before my junior year of high school, Jim became my best friend. From here I began to show him every aspect of my life. The good, the bad, the issues, the fight. That’s when the relationship began to grow excessively. Long story short, this 28 year old man and his family have become just that to me; family. We have inside jokes, trust, mowing Saturdays, and a constant competition of getting each other things with no acceptance of anything in return.

While that is my main example, this past year has given NUMEROUS people who I would NOT be ashamed to be tied to. They have seen my ups, downs, faithful, and struggling times.

In the pictures above you’ll see two little kids that have my heart. Kambri (Jim’s daughter/ my sister) and Austin (My nephew). I don’t love these kids because they are the most well-behaved, but because they love me with a love I don’t always understand. I don’t always get to see them, yet they treat me the same and usually with even more love.

Here at MNU this is what you find. Community with people who will become like family. They live next door, across campus, and even off MNU property. I know I would pick no other place to find people who want the best for me and my relationship with God. Whether it may be sharing my life with a new friend after chapel or growing closer to my RA, I know that I can call these people family. It’s found on the halls, in the classroom, even on the random benches around the beautiful campus.

In conclusion, don’t let family be tied to a last name or your cray cray Uncle Bert’s kids. Instead, find people who will fight for you even when you seem to be losing control. This is found in school, church, family, random friends that you meet in coffee shops (true story, I’ve experienced it). I do however know that my most beneficial relationships are based around Jesus Christ. Never be afraid to reveal who you are to someone who loves you enough to walk alongside you.

Keep on and keep God my friends