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Passion - MNU Blogs

Mario Flores

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March 29, 2014

Motivated and Rejuvenated to Finish the Final 4 Weeks

March 29, 2014 | By | No Comments

Spring Break Work & Witness Mission Trip to the Dominican Republic.

Arrival at the DR.

Arrival at the DR.

The man directly to my left was Danny or Danny Rebar. He has one of the MANLIEST laughs I have ever heard. He is one of the most intimidating men I've ever seen, but kindest and light-hearted that I know.

The man directly to my left was Danny or Danny Rebar. He has one of the MANLIEST laughs I have ever heard. He is one of the most intimidating men I’ve ever seen, but kindest and light-hearted that I know.

We got to start off the week by playing some softball against the Church and some friends from the local community!! We only lost by 3!!:D:D:D

We got to start off the week by playing some softball against the Church and some friends from the local community!! We only lost by 3!!:D:D:D

I got to help two of the three days at the Medical Clinic. We had two Nurses one of which is an MNU grad and then a local doctor came. All of this was able to be done for free because of the donations and generous hearts from Brothers and Sisters in Christ and other great people.

I got to help two of the three days at the Medical Clinic. We had two certified Nurses both of which were MNU grads, an experienced RNA who’s in this pic-Jeni also an MNU Grad and played volleyball & softball for us a few years ago. Also a local doctor came and gave his time and talents to serve at the clinic. All of this was able to be done for free because of the donations and generous hearts from Brothers and Sisters in Christ and other great people.

Music with some of these friends

Music with some of these friends

Here were some of the men that came to help with the Children's Basketball clinic.

Here were some of the men that came to help with the Children’s Basketball clinic.

Teaching proper Setting techniques-at least I was trying, Jeni was succeeding.

Teaching proper Setting techniques-at least I was trying, Jeni was succeeding.

Pato Pato Ganzo aka Duck Duck Goose with kids from the area around the still-being-built community center.

Pato Pato Ganzo aka Duck Duck Goose with kids from the area around the still-being-built community center.

Getting to make balloon figures with my new friends in the DR during the Medical Clinic. And by balloon figures, I mean a hat or a sword.

Getting to make balloon figures with my new friends in the DR during the Medical Clinic. And by balloon figures, I mean a hat or a sword.

 

A Work and Witness Mission Trip is a no brainer great way to spend time, money, and resources. No regrets have I heard any person say they have after going and serving on one. MNU offers several every single year. And if you don’t think you’d like to do one of those, you can go with churches all around this area, Living Hope Church of the Nazarene in particular is going back to the DR next June!!

 

And Now,
School life, assignments, pages to be read, and papers to write renews.
But that’s okay. It serves a purpose. I know because I served in the DR with MNU grads who were able to use their skills from their jobs that came from their MNU degrees!

If that isn’t a positive endorsement of MNU, I don’t know what is.
Till next time friends,

Peace.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Joey Alligier

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March 27, 2014

“..Let’s Pack Up and Move to California..”

March 27, 2014 | By | No Comments

Life is full of decisions to be made. 


As you sit at the mind numbing computer screen you may be facing the dilemma of finishing your homework…or possibly finishing that episode of Prison Break. More seriously you may be deciding between colleges, jobs, living situations, etc.

How do we often find the answers to these pivotal points? Perhaps a pro/con list, ask friends, of course pray, overall we assess the situation and weigh the options. Which one is more beneficial to me?

While of course weighing options and evaluating consequences is necessary, sometimes you just need to do something. I tend to think we sit on the sidelines for so long awaiting our names to be called so we can rip off those sweet, throwback, button-up pants. Yet, some go their whole lives waiting for confirmation on a decision; in that time opportunity is being missed out on. Life is being missed out on.

During Spring Break last week I got to hang out with this friend. Now this friend has been through quite a bit; things of his own decision and others not so much. However, through these trials and valleys he is staring into the eyes of God. As he is staring he is impacting so many people with his passion and perseverance. He knows God will provide for him. He isn’t a Biblical Scholar, he hasn’t been to school for this at all, he is hardly around people who challenge him with this.

When I saw change in his life, I sought him out. So, over some FroYo he told me a story I yearn to somewhat duplicate and/or never forget. Like Hawk Nelson, he packed up and moved  to California… yet, he had no friends out there. He had no idea. This was a leap of faith.

Hawk Nelson

Throughout this story he exemplified what it meant to trust Jesus on a level more severe than the lackadaisical, hesitant, and questioning approach most American Christians take. Long story short; he left for change and then decided to return changed.

The moral of this story and what should be the moral of all of our stories is that we WILL NOT have it all figured out at any point. We will question, doubt, and think “What if…” Yet, somehow that is where life produces the most beautiful pictures. That can be seen in a sunset  on your way through Arizona when God’s face isn’t any clearer or it can be revealed in the loving acts of a stranger you felt somewhat “pulled towards.” Just take the trip, just ask her out, just ask that person for help.

Limit your pride, expose your vulnerability. 

I leave you with this.

It’s okay to play, pro/con, and think about things.
It’s not okay to worry, overanalyze, and miss out on this big world.
Take a risk.
Challenge yourself.
Jump.

Take the Leap

Keep on and keep God,
Joey

 

 

Mario Flores

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February 28, 2014

2 Things: Pleasure and Play. Both are from the Lord.

February 28, 2014 | By | No Comments

Whether it would be watching TV, playing a sport, drawing (for me its more like doodling), getting on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest (I don’t do Pinterest, but I know peeps that do…. dancing, working-out, playing video games-LITERALLY WHATEVER “floats your boat”, there is a time and a place where Pleasure and Play is necessary.

Yes I said necessary.

God did create the Sabbath as a time of rest. That’s back in Genesis 2:2-3. Jesus Christ even said that the Sabbath was made for man (Mark 2:27). Observing and resting on the Sabbath (originally our Saturday) was done in order that human beings would keep their sanity and not succumb to becoming workaholics.

“Every good and perfect gift is from above…” -James 1:17. Paraphrasing words from C.S. Lewis:
The Lord is disappointed with our desires. Disappointed because our desires are too weak. Every pleasure and good thing has been created by God. Sure Satan can twist good things and pervert them, to where they become unhealthy.
But Truly, Every single good thing is from God and He does like for us to play, rest, and take pleasure in good fun things!!

Working, studying, paying bills, budgeting, are great things. But I will argue that part of being responsible is living a full life.
A full life must be a balanced life. Following Christ includes knowing JOY :D. It’s one of the results or “fruits” from the Holy Spirit (2nd on the list right after Love and before Peace and Patience Galatians 5:22-23).

So, please be aware that a full life means having fun and enjoying time to relax, rest, recharge, and LIVE.

Joey Alligier

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January 16, 2014

Grounded

January 16, 2014 | By | 5 Comments

This break was full of adventures!

Texas, a pretty girl, and an intense Jesus filled retreat; just to name the highlights.
One of the most consistent adventures I embarked on was to a local coffee shop that warms my soul.
Mead’s Corner.
Meads_Front_Door-250x250Click on this ^^^^
This place is the epitome of serenity.
It offers a peace that just has the Holy Spirit as the composition of the atmosphere.
Alongside the fair trade coffee they have gelato, beautiful art/photography, an amazing staged area used for artists, and a quality view into the city.This place is my inspiration, my hangout, and *spoiler, my number one date spot.
To me, it’s more than a place with fulfilling aromas, it’s passion.
I want to open a coffee shop.
It will be called Grounded: It’s more than just beans
coffee

It’s a place to feel grounded when the world feels like it keeps knocking you down.
It’s a place where your faith can be explored no matter the record you hold.
It’s a place where the heart is addressed by the compassion it is built on.
It’s a place we all need at times.

dogood

I have had this idea for about two years.
In high school I actually developed a detailed, preliminary plan that would kick start the process.
Other facets that have been added are a meeting space for businesses, a restaurant portion, and a fair trade, human trafficking, addressing shop.

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I want this.
Not for me, for others, for opportunity.
Dreams come and dreams can go. Or they can give you purpose and passion
I take this time to say, don’t give up on your dreams or aspirations.
Don’t give up.
If it’s to come to MidAmerica, make it happen
If it’s to walk on the moon, take the leaps necessary
If it’s to open a coffee shop, call me

tomsbetterbreathtaking

Keep on and keep God,
Joey

Joey Alligier

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October 30, 2013

Passion in Pictures

October 30, 2013 | By | No Comments

Pictures capture a moment in time. A spot in history that can never be truly replicated. Snapping the obnoxious laughter from a more-corny-than-actually-humorous joke or catching the relief of a runner crossing the finish line is a fulfilling feeling. But it’s not fulfilling simply because the picture isn’t blurry. It’s fulfilling because there’s a story behind the picture. This story can impact the way you live because it molds the way you view life, people, and individual moments. Maybe it’s obvious and maybe it’s up to interpretation. For example, the corny joke is from a blooming friendship that is an answered prayer and the relieved runner has been training for months after forgetting what running meant.

There are numerous different things in life that can present opportunity for you to pour yourself into. For me, photography is one.

Here’s some of my “work”
(LOL, work? I was just being creepy, well like, kind of, never mind…)
Basketball

Such a Time Cam Mario Madsion Deal Kylee Dylan Dr. Spittal Pumpkin RunLook at life through a different pair of glasses; who knows, maybe it will be a perfect fit. Don’t be afraid to try new things. They can become the things that mean the most to you. It doesn’t matter how good you are at it! The passion is yours, do with it what you will and make it matter.

Keep on and keep God,
Joey

Joey Alligier

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September 26, 2013

Kickin’ it Old School

September 26, 2013 | By | No Comments

Well, in honor of Throwback Thursday, let’s take a trip down the memory lane of
Joseph Blake Alligier

IMG_1994IMG_1998

Starting off I was born premature at 27 weeks, addicted to illegal substances, and I also had a brain atrophy. In short I wasn’t supposed to live and when I did, I was not supposed to walk, talk, or really function in a sufficient manner. Little did the world know,
this is where my life would start.

*fun fact- my biological mother is 4ft 8in, Caucasian, has blonde hair, green eyes, and no recollection of who my father is. Just let that sink in and then take a gander at my features…

IMG_1995

Shortly after I was born I was adopted by my Great Aunt Karen, who from this point on would be; “Mom” and the best one I could ask for at that. Another twist in the plot is that my name changed. It went from being Izrael (Izzy) DeShawn to Joseph Blake (Joey was chosen based on the premise of a nurse’s comment and a babysitter’s dream) after official adoption. I like this change as well. About three years later we adopted my half sister Brieana (same biological mother, different dad). Yes, you got it, my Mom was brave enough to adopt two kids Oh, and did I mention she was 48 at this point and divorced with 2 other kids already basically raised.

Yes, yes, she is a superhero.
Mom by day and Mom by night.

As my life progressed I was extremely blessed. I was raised in the church, attended a private school for 6 years, and the Lord always provided. 


IMG_1992 IMG_0812

From the pictures above you can see I may have been a bit too blessed…..
Let’s just say my cup, or in this case plate, runneth over. From 2nd grade to about mid junior year of high school my weight fluctuated. Whether from delicious fast food brought in by the private school to having a “too-comfortable” attitude while having a girlfriend during my sophomore and junior year of high school. Below is the time span of all four years.

IMG_3712

Some parts of my story are definitely more serious than others, but they both serve a purpose. My life has been formed by my story and where I have “traveled” in my own little Haysville, Kansas world. Sports, extra-curriculars, clubs, organizations, friends, family, struggles all have played their part in who I am today. In the search to find out who I am, with mistakes and successes, I have learned to lean on the Lord and his promises; even when I wondered off the path of the Christian life and had NO idea what I was doing.

*this is all an overview and not necessarily the depths of my story,
FEEL FREE TO ASK QUESTIONS!

Needless to say, I am a changed man today. I owe all of it to the Lord’s choice of vessels in the foundations I obtained when I was younger and through the years and also to MidAmerica. I can truly say my time here has helped me to take a 180 degree turn in a lot of areas. This summer was ESPECIALLY a part of that. The best part is that I’m still growing with no plans of relenting. I’ll keep going where He leads me #fuhdayz 

IMG_1739In the midst of the #throwbackthursday you have seen the past of my life in multiple facets. I hope it gives you some sense of satisfaction; maybe the sick kind of seeing my fat pictures or the joyful kind of seeing my superhero of a mother.

Take a second this week to take a look into your own life and the people who share in the same community and “Kick it Old School” by reminiscing on your fat pictures or hopefully how God has transformed you.

Keep on and keep God,
Joey

*for more fat pictures and other information on my life check out my Instagram- @praya_warrior

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