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Thursday, March 28, 2013

Days 27-40: Finals, Spring Break, and A New Quarter.

Spring Break: The light at the end of the tunnel.

My finals happened to go extremely well, I would say I A-ed most of them, and that proves to by true when I received almost all A's except for an obnoxious B+. After spending a week on my finals, chewing all of my nails off, and diligently cleaning my dorm room; I headed to Oregon to see my Uncle and Cousin.
Overall I have a pretty amazing family, and when I realized flying to Bend was going to cost way too much my Uncle Leonard opened his house to me (he begged me to hang out),and thus I spend 10 glorious days in Dayton, Oregon. Dayton officially has a population of two and is next to a couple of towns with populations varying from 5-30 people (I might be a drama queen). It as nice to have time to do nothing, watch  the TV I never get the chance to watch, and read books that I actually care about. The bonus of the time spend in that awful town is the fact that my cousin was on leave from the Army, fresh from Afghanistan. My family has a strong military presence and I am exceedingly proud of each and every one of them, notably of my uncle who recently retired from 26 years in the service, concluding his service as a Senior Drill Sargent, or as my uncle likes to say,  the man who knows everything. My cousin, Jake, is really funny, smart, and just a fun person to spend time with; therefore it was fun to banter, fight, and chat with him. (I secretly admire him) During this time with my family I spotted the difference between some of my family members that I connect the most with and admire, and my other family members that I love dearly; generosity. 
It doesn't matter if your Christian or Hindi; black or white; rich or poor; a generous heart pumps blood into a very different type of person, than an ungenerous heart. Generosity is not only determined by the monetary or tangible gifts, but also by the love and service you give. I have family members who come from a diverse economic backgrounds and a lot of the time I'm not drawn into someone who throws just money at me, but someone who shares something far more valuable; an investment of wisdom. Wisdom is not something you can pay for, its something that you have to take the time to listen, learn, and use in your pursuit of your own goals. I have been blessed far beyond what I deserve from my family, the stories, the love, and time that has been invested my heart is the most beautiful gift that could have ever been given to me, and I only hope invest all of this wisdom and my own into another promising soul. 
Spring break was only 10 days but I must say that it has really revamped me giving me the kick to take on this last quarter before summer break. 

Devotionals 
 "Receptivity is opening up your innermost being to be filled with my abundant riches. attentiveness is diverting your gaze to me: searching for me in all your moments. it is possible to stay your mind on me, as the prophet Isaiah wrote. through such attentiveness you receive a glorious gift: my perfect peace." -Jesus Calling March 28th

"Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. then you will be able to test and approve what Gods will is -his pleasing and perfect will." Romans 12:2

"People were bringing little children to Jesus for him to place his hands on them, but the disciples rebuked them. When Jesus saw this, he was indignant. He said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.” And he took the children in his arms, placed his hands on them and blessed them." Mark 10:13-16

"We have a strong city;God makes salvation its walls and ramparts.
Open the gates that the righteous nation may enter,the nation that keeps faith.
You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you." Isaiah 26:1-3

Thenceforth...

Be generous in more than tangible assets, be generous with love, wisdom, and laughter. 

<3 Alicia

Monday, March 11, 2013

Days 17-26: Dead Week


That one week before finals...

Oh my word! This last week had just been agonizing with all of the papers, presentations, and last minute curriculum! I am so exciting to take my finals this week and just be done with this quarter. It has been the worse quarter ever! I am very excited! I've also had an excellent devotional week and things are getting on track for break! I’m going to be hanging out in the exciting town of Dayton, okay it’s actually the opposite of exciting. But I spend some time with my favorite uncle and see my family for a party before I head back to school! It is going to be awesome! I also only have two more weeks before I have Dessert, get back on Facebook and wear some make-up! Although my face has cleared up so much since I remembered this week to just relax and find peace in God and it has made this whole time a lot more bearable. The best part of my whole week was this morning when I gave a roast toast! Oh man you guys I felt so funny!

A Million Devotionals

"Awareness of my presence fills your mind with light and peace, leaving to room for fear." -Jesus Calling March 4.

"Can worries ass a single moment to your life? And if worry can’t accomplish a little thing like that, what’s the use of worrying over big things?" -Luke 12:25-26

"Always be joyful; never stop praying be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus" -1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Worry is such a natural occurrence in our lives; but that doesn't make it the right way to go about our daily lives. The only way to ease worry is to trust Jesus and give him your worry. Pray as life happens, not once and week but continuously. As life happens be Jesus-minded. Thank God always even in the toughest ties, thank God that you are becoming stronger. 

"Every problem can teach you something, transforming you little by little into the masterpiece I created you to be." -Jesus Calling March 5

"And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them." -Romans 8:28

The first line in the March 5th devotion is "Make friends with the problems in your life." It is hard to think of adversity like that because we tend to feel like we are going so much right and bad stuff is happening 'to us'. We need to look at these problems like God does, an opportunity for growth. The devotion words it like this: "transforming you little by little into the masterpiece". AMAZING! If we look at our problems as opportunity we will then change and even greater amount.

"The world is a needy place; do not go these for sustenance. Instead, come to me learn to depend on me alone, and your weakness will become saturated with my power. When you find your completeness in me, you can help other people without using them to me your own needs" -Jesus Calling March 9

"You, my brothers and sisters, were called to be free, but to no use your freedom to indulge in the flesh rather, serve one another humbly in love. For the entire law is fulfilled in keeping this one command: "love your neighbor as yourself"" -Galatians 5:13-14

"No one has ever seen God, but if we love one another, God lives in us and his love is make complete in us." -1 John 4:12

We can get so much rest in god if we try and let ourselves rest in knowing God loves us. A when we got about our lives full of peace and rest we are able to help God help people so easily. We can even enjoy helping people knowing that we sent need to go about our relationships wondering what our friends can do for us we are commanded to love our neighbor boy like we love ourselves.

The clincher
So I guess the moral of all of the devotions and blurb at the beginning is to remember that if you so choose you can find a lot of peace in God, I feel like that has really been demonstrated in my life in the last week. So remember to take a deep breath, look for opportunity to better yourself, and remember to laugh!



<3 Alicia

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Days 12-16: A Busy Week.

The Attitude of Gratitude

This week has forced most of us to think of the upcoming academic year, who will we live with; where will we live; will be study near or far; is this private school worth it? Monday I attended a SPU School of Business and Economics Dessert; it was nice and it really reminded me why I was in college, that is to get a degree and hopefully better the world in some way. I love business and what it can do for people, I strive to be a business person that benefits the community in which I do business in. I'm an Economics major, I'm the business person that can see alternatives, problem solve, and see the big picture. I feel so blessed to be here.  The next day I started work at the SPU Advancement call center, even though I'm technically a telemarketer,  I anticipate this being one of my favorite jobs. The community and love love that fills that place is incredible I cannot wait until I work regularly next quarter. I also 'Ombre-d' my hair this week and it took a couple of tries to get it just right; I love it! Its been a really good week and I'm so thankful that I have all of these blessings in my life. 

On a side note this not wearing make-up thing has really been clearing my skin up and I feel so much better about myself these days. I feel like I have come a was since two weeks ago. Finding stuff to like about yourself in your natural element is probably one of the best ways to enhance your self esteem. Its funny that I would claim this after spending a week perfecting my ombre hair. The thing is I feel like just because you do need to learn to love yourself in your natural most form, you should also do what you want. I almost didn't do my hair ombre because I feared I was 'too late' to the ombre trend; honestly why the hell should that matter to me? If I want to do something I have to freedom to do it; so I did. I didn't do my hair a certain way because I believed people would like my better this way, I did it for me. After all is said and done why are you doing and wearing what you are? Is it because you WANT to do it? Doing your make-up, keeping-up your hair, or getting dressed should never feel like a burden, it should be something you do that you have fun with; if your not having fun, then STOP. 

A prayer for you

Lord, 
I pray for the women in my life. I pray that you show them their inner and outer beauty. I pray you show them purpose, peace, and protection. Lord I thank you for all of my blessings and I pray that you make others aware of all the blessings in their lives. Lord fill our lives with love and grace. 
AMEN

Furthermore

Please remember that we make the choice everyday to let the pressure of society push us in to an awful and rigorous beauty routine, or to free our selves from that pressure and do what we want to do. Always ALWAYS remember to laugh...


<3 Alicia

Monday, February 25, 2013

Days 8, 9,10 and 11


Disappointment. 

This morning I found out that I will not be continuing on as a potential PA for next school year. I was really quite upset about it, but  have some amazing friends and an amazing God that gives me much comfort at times like this. It was an interesting thing finding out that I didn't move on; I went to class to find out that one of my friends was giving an inspirational speech on this very topic, right after that I read my Jesus Calling devotion to find out that it was on the very same topic, and then I listened to Pandora to find that most of the music that was played was again on the very same topic. I know for a fact that something better is going to be right around the corner for me. 

Devotional

"Your neediness, properly handles is a line to my presence. However, there are pitfalls that you must be on guard against, self-pity, self-preoccupation, giving up. Your inadequacy presents you with a continual choice --deep dependence on me, or despair."

" Be cheerful no matter what; pray all the time, thank God no matter what happens. This is the way God wants you who belong to Christ Jesus to live" -1 Thessalonians 5:17

"This is what I want you to do: Ask the father for whatever is in keeping with the things I've revealed to you. Ask in my name, according to my will, and he will most certainly give it to you. Your joy will be a river overflowing its banks!" -John 16:24

I felt that this was so timely in my life. The reason that not being a PA is so upsetting is because PA's are given free room and board and I really could have used that. I will save a lot of money living in an apartment but it certainly is not free. I have to stop thinking about what I could have had and what I now can have now that I won't be tied up to a floor of responsibilities. You never know what's around the corner and as they say God never closes on door without opening another; and honestly I hope that's the truth. 

Thus, 

I hope that you would take the time to be aware of your self-pity, find your way out of that trap, and look ahead to what the possibilities are; if you work for it, you can have it all. Don't forget to laugh...


<3 Alicia

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Days 7 and 8

Friendship.

Friendship, or rather a lack of, has really been on my mind in the last two days. I am realizing that good friends are far and few between, to have them you have to learn to be intentional with your friendships, something I have always been pretty good at until this last quarter. I am seeing that I only have a few friends who are willing to be intentional towards me when I am lacking my usual intentionality (not a word). I have a lot of classes this quarter and a huge project that require a lot of time, I'm finding the closest friend I have at the moment is the one I can keep through my phone because my best friend is 4 hours away. I don't feel like I have very many friends right now, but I am so grateful they have been overly intentional towards me in this season of time. 
The most valuable of friends are those that you can laugh with for days, the ones you feel like you have known forever even when its only been a year or so, they are also the ones you can ask for more out of without much objection, iron sharpens iron. Sometimes we make mistakes and we let go of the most valuable of people, but the beauty of a good friendship is when they know in their hearts that they now have the opportunity to be the better friend in the situation. They figure out that you didn't loose connection to continue the way things are but to grow and change and be the wiser of two friends, even if only for a season. I'm not sure if this makes much sense, but if you have ever been in this situation you would understand. 

Have a laugh!
So I challenge some of you who are not normally the most intentional to be that person for a friend, even when your not used to it; If your getting tired of being the intentional 'one' remember that you can talk to you friends about what bothers you; also don't forget to laugh. :)


<3 Alicia

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Days 4, 5, and 6: Three Day Weekend

I had a pretty good weekend filled with homework, Dawson's Creek, Devotions, room rearranging,  and amateur film making.  Overall it was a great  weekend and there were no life long lessons to be mentioned. 


Devotional
All devotions are from  February 16, 17, and 18 in Jesus calling by Sarah Young.


"Do not spoil these quiet hours by wishing them away, waiting impatiently to be active again." 

"Be silent in the Lord's presence, all people everywhere, for he is being moved to action in his holy dwelling place." -Zechariah 2:13 

"Come to me with a thankful heart, so that you can enjoy My Presence. This is the day that I have made. I want you to rejoice today, refusing to worry about tomorrow"

"Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Jesus Christ." Philippians 4:6-7

"Learn to trust Me when things go 'wrong.' Disruptions to your routine highlight your dependence on Me. Trusting acceptance of trails brings blessings that far outweigh them all."

"For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal." -2 Corinthians 4:17-18
Cheerio! 

So this weekends devotions were mostly about being patience and keeping our minds on Jesus so we might know what is coming next. I would challenge you to relax and take advantage of the quiet hours of your life, because there will be a day when you wish you didn't have so much to deal with; you again long for quiet hours. Oh and of course don't forget to laugh...


<3 Alicia

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Day 3: The Interveiw

Peer Adviser

Yesterday I had my interview for peer adviser (PA). I again had a tough time knowing I wasn't going to be wearing make-up for this interview  What worries me the most this time is the fact that people may judge me when I am not wearing make up because the societal norm is to look 'put together' this includes at least a little bit of make-up. I was also more nervous for this interview than others because I really really want to be a PA! I just feel like I could do a great job. My interview actually went quite well and I am anxious to find out whether or not  I made it through the first cut, there are so many excellent applicants and by next Friday half of us will be cut. 
I'm starting to get used to this whole no make up thing. I'm actually starting to find things I like about not wearing make-up and I can see a different type of beauty in this natural look. I hope after this experience I can be content with or without make-up. 


Devotional

February 15  in Jesus Calling by Sarah Young and NET Bible context:

"When anxiety attempts to wedge its way into your thoughts, remind yourself that I am your shepherd."
"14 For this reason I kneel before the Father, 15 from whom every family[a] in heaven and on earth derives its name. 16 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.
20 Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen."- Ephesians #:14-21

"For nothing will be impossible with God" -Luke 1:37


To conclude... 

I believe it important for us to find something we love about our natural selves, relax in the peace of knowing that what is done is done, and remember to laugh...


Much Love, 
Alicia