Monday, February 20, 2012

*ecclesiastes 4:9-10*

Friday and Saturday of this past week were A+ days!  Friday, I had the unique opportunity to visit a public middle school in our area and share with over 100 students about my job as a missionary, and how they too can use the talents God has given them and be a missionary too.  That's the short version - but no exaggeration -  I would put that on the top 5 list of best things I've ever done.  :)  

Saturday started out early but with great reason.  I joined a group of about 12 to 15 other women to start a short four week study on Naomi in the book of Ruth.  So much lately I've really been craving to be taught and fed from the Word, especially by older, wiser believers, and God has totally been providing that.  It was such a cool time being lead through just the first chapter of the book along with all the history that goes with it.  I love knowing the context and background that goes along with what I'm reading in the Word, but I'm not always great at pulling that out.  So thankful for those God has put in my life to help grow me and push me forward!  And, not only did my day begin by digging in to the Bible, it also ended that same way with the beautiful group of godly women pictured above!  I'd say its hard to beat a Saturday where I start and end seeking what Jesus wants to teach me with a handful of other women desiring to run towards Christ as well.  

Monday, February 13, 2012


I love Valentine's Day!  I honestly get giddy and excited when, after Christmas, I walk into the stores and they're full of red chocolate hearts and pink balloons and all things lovey-dovey.  Weird, I know - maybe I'm broken - but there is not much about Valentine's Day that doesn't bring a smile to my face! :)  So in honor of cheesy, mushy-gushy things, my middle school persona looked up some of my fav things from the past and posted the links below... Enjoy! 

*Magic 8 Ball*
<3 Love Calculator <3
<3 Paper Fortune Teller <3

This weekend, we got to spend some time with my Aunt Rachel and Aunt Shirley, two of my grandma's seven sisters.  Ali and I grew up going to their house.  In fact, when we were born, Ali had to stay in the hospital a few days longer than I did, so I spent my first few days at their house while my mom stayed with Ali.  When we were little, we would have sleepovers, make caramel popcorn and watch movies together.  Or we would take trips to the mountains and the beach, some before we were even old enough to remember.  They are even responsible for one of only two truly successful April Fool's pranks I've ever been a part of  in life! :P These two never married and have lived together for as long as I can remember.  And while to some, even me at certain times, it seems like that could've been such a sad life of singleness, theirs has honestly been anything but.  First, and foremost, both of them love and serve Jesus with their lives and know that  He alone is all that will ever really satisfy.  But, in addition to that, it seems they have truly embraced the gift of singleness and have lived their lives to the fullest, in spite of their single state.  And because of that, their lives have been so full of adventure, friends, family, love and an obvious joy that could only come from truly walking with Jesus.  I hope that I can follow along in their example of seeking Jesus first and then choosing to enjoy whatever stage of life He has me in and all that it has to offer!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

*i want more*

"the heavens proclaim the glory of God, the skies display his craftmanship...they speak without a sound or word...yet their message has gone throughout the earth and their words to all the world....the instructions of the Lord are perfect, reviving the soul.  the decrees of the Lord are trustworthy, making wise the simple.  the commandments of the Lord are right, bringing joy to the heart.  the commands of the Lord are clear, giving insight for living"
-psalm 19: 1-4; 7-8 

I know I'm a month behind but it is still the beginning of a new year and what better time is there than a new year to make some resolutions right?  So, here goes:

1) To blog more.  Maybe even once a week.  Plenty of my blogs are worthless mumbling, but some are also serious and heartfelt.  And I think sometimes they just really help me process things I'm learning or thinking.  I figure that's as good a motivator as any to keep it up.
2) Take more pictures.  I used to take soooo many pictures and now I feel like I never do.  Not sure what happened, but I want to make more of an effort.  Starting with maybe a picture per week, with my blog.  (I'm thinking optimistically here, people!)
3) Read more.  Last year I had a resolution to read a book a month and I almost made it.  This year, I want to read AT LEAST a book a month.  And, the picture above is not only my first weekly picture, but also the start of my reading list.  Most of these books were recommended and I'm pretty excited to dig in!
4) Volunteer more.  I want to get out of my comfort zone and serve others more.  I don't think this one needs more explanation.
5) Be more unplugged.  I want to spend less time attached to my phone, my email, or social networking and more time actually face to face with people.
6) Get back up more.  I'm a sinner and I mess up daily.  And I wish that wasn't the case but it is.  But I don't want to let those things keep me down.  The funny thing about new years resolutions is its like an excuse when you fail to wait until this "reset" point to start over.  But I don't want to do that - I want to get back up and try again each time.
"If you have made mistakes, even serious mistakes, there is always another chance for you.  And supposing you have tried and failed again and again, you may have a fresh start any moment you choose, for this thing we call 'failure' is not the falling down, but the staying down."

       -Mary Pickford
7) Love Jesus more.   Obviously this one is the most important.  I want to spend more time seeking to know Him, not just what I can gain from a relationship with Him.  And as He changes me from the inside out, I want it to be obvious to all who is first in my life.
"And let us say when we're finished that we thought we loved you when we came"
-Beth Moore

This past week I came across Psalm 19 in my reading time and was really challenged by the verses above.  Most specifically verses 1-4.  The heavens and the skies, sun and stars and moon are all part of God's creation.  And how cool is it to think that they don't have the option for actually using words to speak of who God is, yet these verses pretty much say they are screaming out his glory?  I was convicted thinking about how I, too, am one of God's creations, and how much more my life should be pointing others to Him, whether it's with words or not.  Even if I'm silent, the rocks will cry out.  But I want to join in with them and all creation, and I want my life, in word and actions, to scream out to all those around me about how great my God is.

Random: How fitting that my first post in the new year is also my 100th post? :)

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

because it's my birthday.... :)

28 totally useless, random facts about me...

*i  hate running*
*if you leave me a voicemail the likelihood of me checking it is slim to none*
*i need my very own petting zoo*
*i avoid trips to the bank until i absolutely can't wait any longer to go*
*in 5th grade i had a crush on a left-handed boy who made check marks backwards.  ever since i've made check marks backwards*
*if something has a hood and i can wear it up, then i will*
*i say "sorry". a lot.*
*i've never seen anyone look cool wearing a bluetooth earpiece*
*i like fruit and i like dessert, but i'm not usually a fan of fruit desserts*
*i use an electric toothbrush*
*i love to be called "ash" but i'm funny about who can do it*
*i subscribe to disney channel on demand*
*ive eaten bologna and butter sandwiches ever since i was little*
*quilts are my favorite type of blanket*
*i easily hit snooze at least 4 or 5 times every morning before i actually get up*
*my favorite muscle is vastus medialis*
*i love to read the news online*
*i do not like lettuce*
*my favorite color is green*
*if i have a journal or a notepad, i want it to be unlined paper*
*i never make my bed. ever*
*if you want to see the sin in my life just catch me in traffic*
*i'm a napkin crumbler.  i've tried to be a folder, but i just cant do it*
*i love grapes but hate just about everything that is artificial grape flavored*
*golden girls or everybody loves raymond are a must-watch right before bed*
*if i could get by with wearing only gym shorts and tshirts for the rest of my life i'd be happy*
*i love to sit on the floor*
*"God didn't make me smart, He made me a people person" is a phrase i use to describe myself to others a lot*

Monday, October 24, 2011

told you i would :)

a quick highlight recap from april 'til now, (mostly all good) GO:
april - injured my knee
may - TOO MANY chiro and pt appointments
june - started full-time at camp
july - moldova trip
august - new discipleship class at church
september - lots and lots of weekend travel

anddd a little expansion on the updates of life over the past 6 months

1) working at camp, is in short - totally a God thing, from the timing of it, to the way He changed and prepared my heart for being here.  so cool that this place i've been a part of for the majority of my life is now also where i work.
2) this is easily the most happy and content i've ever been in raleigh, nc.  LOVE it here and i know that too could only be a God thing.
3) 1 week from tomorrow is mine and ali's bday!! we're planning to celebrate with a trip to nyc and the taylor swift concert!  it's def fun having a twin to celebrate with every year! :)
4) only 2 trips to the state fair this year...a little disappointing but life is just so busy!

Saturday morning, a couple of weeks ago, I went to a meeting for this business that I'm a part of.  The services are great, something I have for myself and believe in, but something I rarely tell others about.  This was the first meeting of this kind I have been to and the purpose of the meeting seemed to be a reminder of how great these services are and a motivator to get you to share, share, share what you have with others.  There were testimonies of success story after success story about how these services had worked for others, and statistics from individuals polled about how if they only knew such a service existed that they would immediately want in.  All of these things are so true and I was definitely inspired and excited again thinking about what I have that I could be sharing with others, but most of the time I'm not - out of fear.  But even more than being excited about this business, I was wholeheartedly, completely convicted about the lack of passion I have for sharing my faith with others around me - mostly, out of fear.

Near the end of the meeting, one of the speakers pointed out what a "unique" opportunity we have with this service, and if that is not also a great word to describe the gift of salvation then I don't know what is!  Fully God and fully human, perfect Jesus took my place on the cross so that someday I could spend eternity in heaven with Him.  Someone loved me enough to die for sinful, selfish me and wants a relationship with me.  Isn't that what most of us are seeking in this life anyhow - something or someone to fill that hole or void we feel?  That place we fit, that person to complete us and make us feel totally satisfied?          

I've been reading in Mark lately and there are a number of stories where God touches someone and heals them.  And each time He does this, that person wastes no time running back to their friends and family to share the good news of what God has done.  Maybe God isn't casting out demons in my life or healing my blind eyes, but there are certainly so many "success stories" of the ways God has been totally faithful and worked modern-day miracles in my life.   And there are so many lost hurting people around me who have never heard or seen that this relationship is for real; that God is real.  I want to continuously be seeking Jesus and being reminded of who He is and what He has done in my life that  I can't help but to minister out of overflow.   

*The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has anointed me to proclaim good news to the poor.  He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives....I delight greatly in the Lord; my soul rejoices in my God.  For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of his righteousness....For as the soil makes the sprout come up and a garden causes seeds to  grow, so the Sovereign Lord will make righteousness and praise spring up before all nations*
-Isaiah 61:1, 10-11

I'm praying that God will keep changing my heart and molding me so He can use me...and that I won't let my pride or fears get in the way of sharing this amazing, undeserved gift that I've been given with all those around me.  I don't want to just go through the motions or look back at my life and see nothing but wasted opportunities...

Friday, October 21, 2011

i have every intention of starting to blog again soon.  promise. :) 

Friday, August 19, 2011

i always think i've got it figured out....only to realize i dont.  at all.

i'm just not there yet. sorry

Thursday, May 19, 2011

proverbs 16:9

"the heart of man plans his way, but the Lord establishes his steps"

overwhelmed at where things in my life seemed to be heading right now.  it's all good, don't get me wrong - i'm excited!  just so surprised that this is where i am.  not a place i probably would've have imagined a year ago, but honestly i feel like all of it is a product of me taking small steps of faith and in obedience to things i felt God leading me to do.  i just had no idea where He was taking me.  and He has continued to confirm in one way or another each step.

i'm humbled and amazed.  a little nervous to let go of a few things, but excited about what comes next. 

i'll keep you posted :)

Monday, May 16, 2011


moldova:  turns out God answered prayers so much quicker than my little faith expected and as of friday, i have raised $2030 for my trip, with a verbal promises of $150 more!

my sister and brother-in-law are renewing their vows with a small wedding ceremony this year, and i get my chance as maid-of-honor. :)
i finished book #5 for the year and am already started on #6.  if that makes me a dork - i'm okay with it.  
tangled -

Thursday, May 5, 2011

summer, summer, summerrrrrr :)

in  case you haven't already heard, this summer i am going to Moldova on a mission trip.  why Moldova, you may ask?  i say - why not Moldova ? there's a saying i've heard a number of different times that goes something like "you either give or you go" and God has definitely given me a big desire to GO!  so when the opportunity was presented to me, in short, i thought - what reason do i have to not go?  Jesus has commanded us to go and make disciples and i'm excited to be a part of the Great Commission.  as a bonus, turns out Shelley is also going!  she said yes to the trip the same day i did, and neither of us knew it.  i'm thinking that is totally a God thing.  

for more info about the trip you can click the picture below to see my support letter.  i've also put a picture of my fundraising thermometer so i can keep everyone updated on my progress.  

please be praying for myself, as well as the rest of the team,  as we prepare for this trip.  and, if you would like to be involved in this trip through financially giving - just get in touch with me! :)