Monday, April 27, 2009

Jesus Is.

“Then beginning with Moses and with all the prophets, He explained to them the things concerning Himself in all the Scriptures.” (Luke 24:27)

  • Jesus is the true and better Adam who passed the test in the garden and whose obedience is imputed to us (1 Corinthians 15).
  • Jesus is the true and better Abel who, though innocently slain, has blood now that cries out for our acquittal, not our condemnation (Hebrews 12:24).
  • Jesus is the true and better Abraham who answered the call of God to leave all the comfortable and familiar and go out into the void “not knowing wither he went!” to create a new people of God.
  • Jesus is the true and better Isaac who was not just offered up by his father on the mount but was truly sacrificed for us. While God said to Abraham, “Now I know you love me because you did not withhold your son, your only son whom you love, from me,” now we can say to God, “Now we know that you love me, because you did not withhold your son, your only son, whom you love, from me.”
  • Jesus is the true and better Jacob who wrestled and took the blow of justice we deserved, so we, like Jacob, only receive the wounds of grace to wake us up and discipline us.
  • Jesus is the true and better Joseph who, at the right hand of the king, forgives those who betrayed and sold him and uses his new power to save them.
  • Jesus is the true and better Moses who stands in the gap between the people and the Lord and who mediates a new covenant (Hebrews 3).
  • Jesus is the true and better Rock of Moses who, struck with the rod of God’s justice, now gives us water in the desert.
  • Jesus is the true and better Job, the truly innocent sufferer, who then intercedes for and saves his stupid friends (Job 42).
  • Jesus is the true and better David, whose victory becomes his people’s victory, though they never lifted a stone to accomplish it themselves.
  • Jesus is the true and better Esther who didn’t just risk losing an earthly palace but lost the ultimate and heavenly one, who didn’t just risk his life, but gave his life to save his people.
  • Jesus is the true and better Jonah who was cast out into the storm so that we could be brought in.

Jesus is the real Rock of Moses, the real Passover Lamb - innocent, perfect, helpless, slain so the angel of death will pass over us. He is the true temple, the true prophet, the true priest, the true king, the true sacrifice, the Lamb, the Light, the Bread.

The Bible is not about you — it is about him.

Written by Tim Keller

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Dinner with Emily

So, I don't have much time to write but I want to let you know that last night Emily and I had dinner together. I wasn't exactly excited about picking her up because I wasn't having a great day. However, here are a few things that helped me remember the joy I can choose to have each and every minute of the day.

We have solved the "car ate my cd" dilemma. Emily said she put a cd in and it wasn't playing. I looked down and fortunately Emily's hand was still in the location she put the cd. She had put the cd in just a crack in my console. It was just a space but she thought it was the cd player. Long story short, I was able to recover the cd with a few scratches on my arm. We didn't find the other one yet, but I guarantee that's where it went.

During dinner, Emily opened up about how concerned she was with her sister leaving next year to go to graduate school in S.C. I was able to share with her about what I'm learning and dealing with when people leave. I reminded her that sometimes, the "catch up" conversation or seeing someone for the first time in a while is almost better than seeing them everyday. It was sweet to hear her precious heart for her family.

Driving her home last night, I randomly (I can sometime be quite random) asked her what she thought when I said the word, "light." She replied exactly what I expected, "sun." Then I asked her what she thought when I said the word "blue." Blue brought the sky to her mind but brought the ocean to mine. We continued this "game" until I was running out of words. I looked up and the traffic light lead me to say, "circle." To my greatest surprise, Emily responded, "uhh, the circle of life." I thought she was talking about the Lion King but she also told me why she delivered such an answer. "You know, like you have God and then the Son and then the Holy Spirit," she explained. I asked her if she meant the Trinity. She looked at me surprised I knew what that word meant so we continued in our conversation about God. She told me she had been to a couple of churches but none of them she really liked. I reminded her that the same God is in all churches. I was humbled when she responded, "Duh, God is everywhere." There- That was the answer. We were able to go back to the conversation about her sister leaving to conclude that even when her sister is gone, God is still here. He is there to be with, to speak with, to play with, to dance with, to sing with... etc. I am unsure how much this comforted her, but it was a neat time and she is still amazing me with how much joy she brings to my day.

I am learning so much in this experience and I am super glad I have stuck with it even when it gets tough. So there you have it- See if Emily's knowledge can challenge you today as well. God is everywhere. Seek Him in ALL things. Seek Him in the sky, the light, the people you come in contact with, the circumstances you are confronted with, the day to day routine- See Him. Don't Miss Him. He is your joy. Choose Him, Choose Joy.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Girls Bible Study

So, I am going to attempt to write about our last bible study tonight. Katie Bartlett, Mary Reading Overstreet, and Hannah Frost have been leading a community of about 10 girls in Romans since January. Tonight was the grand finale. Katie and Mary will be serving with Grace Campus Ministry in Hong Kong next fall. In just typing that out, tears are flooding my eyes for the hundred time. These women have been so amazing in mentoring and pushing me toward the Kingdom of God and teaching me the importance of who I am in Christ and what that means in my life. Selfishly, I want these two to stay in Auburn for the duration of my college years. However, when I think about the wisdom and love that they have poured into me since I stepped foot on the plains, I can only smile to think that more college students across the world will also experience this. The Lord has blessed them with gifts that are so prominent that you have to see the face of Christ in their every move. When college students in HK see this first hand, I am confident that the Lord will lead them to Himself. 

Here's the deal with this bible study commonly known as GBS. We have studied Romans in this semester. When looking over it all tonight, this is what was shared by the girls:
-Sanctification- embracing what the Spirit is doing in and thru us and the Lord's presence in our lives; walking by faith only in Him.
-Surrender- Striving after HIS plan for our lives and our future, living as sacrifices for Him and His glory as we align our lives with Him which then lines our desires and passions with His heart, because our life with Him is a result to His kindness to us, leading us to repentance. 
-Identity- Each of us are Christ's bride, His beloved as we receive His unfailing love and undeserved mercy. He breaks us so He can mend us in His love as He pulls us closer to Him to a place we could never get to without His mending. He meets us where we are. We belong to Him (He bought us with a price on that cross), We are children of God, Daughters of the King, Innocent covered in His blood, FREE to live a life full of peace, joy and hope. 
-Freedom- As he is refining us through our afflictions, taking capture our past, as we are Dead to sin and self and ALive to Jesus and His Spirit alone. The desire for others to seek Him and His life is a result. (Gal. 2:20) the stripping away process as we are objects of mercy being formed and broken to mirror Him and His image. We are slaves to righteousness. God brings ALL Things to completion-fully wholly and completely! (Psalm 23)
The reason He died to make us whole was because we can only get to God when we are whole. 
-Obedience of Faith- faith (active), our response of His love, Him being ENOUGH, He has built monuments of his faith so we surrender to His love. Forward Movement:
I will FREELY love because I am FULLY loved. 
-Community- unification- Body building, being one in His Kingdom to edify one another in love as we press onward to achieve the same passion and goal to make Him known. Encourage- to give courage to each other in our visions, plans, by being a community that uplifts all people to glorify HIM. 

When I look back for myself, I cannot put to words what the Lord has done in my life since this January. From identity to love, community and passion, I have grown so much. I want to take a minute to at least emphasize on the importance of community. I feel this is one area where the present day church has lost true meaning. Paul speaks of community in Romans 12-15 and in 1 Corinthians 12-13. Many people have looked in on this group and seen the unreal, uncommon, but true community we share. It is completely indescribable. Here's what I know to try to explain- We are a group of college students (boys and girls) under amazing leadership who share one passion: To make Jesus Christ known on our campus, in our lives, and in our friendships. We love each other, encourage one another, and edify one another in the name and glory of Jesus. We recognize that all we have is from Him and our sole purpose is to bring Him glory forever. I can tell you that the Lord has an extreme plan for this group of people. The way this body is so prominent in living for Him proves to all those around that He is living and breathing in us as we serve each other and the community around us. Because of this, we are all confident in the relationships that will be changing in the Fall. Most of our leaders will be moving to Hong Kong to disciple and minister to the Chinese people. Even though this is hard, challenging, and a leap of faith, I am convinced that these friendships will continue in His sovereignty. Even as people move, I know He will continue to bless our relationships as He sends us out. I feel that this community is special because of the call to minister the gospel that is lead on each heart. As He sends us all out to wherever, I know that we will continue to love and encourage each other because we are all after the same goal- making Jesus Christ and the hope of life known in all places and all nations. So, with all that said, I just want to ask you to pray for us. Pray for those of us staying in Auburn to take captive the call to this city and our leadership as we fill the roles He has given us here. Pray for our friends moving to Hong Kong. Pray for the hearts of the Chinese people to be open, ready, and hungry to taste the real bread of life. Pray for those of us who don't know what to do in the Fall. Pray for vision, passion, and hope to stir up in our generation as we join each other to glorify the King. Pray for how the Lord would use you in this passionate movement. Pray to see where He could plug you into community. Pray about supporting our leaders of Grace Campus Ministry as they raise support to move to HK. ( Pray to see His name known in your town, city, state, country, and around the globe. I am passionate about seeing others know this Jesus I have come to know and grow madly in love with. I honestly believe there is no way to live without Him who is the life. 

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Easter with Emily

Even though Easter was on April 12, 2009, my buddy and I decided to celebrate on the 15th. I have been so so excited about spending time hanging out with Emily so I really prepared to make this time special. I picked Emily up around 3 from her house and drove to Town Creek Park in Auburn. There, Emily and I met up with many of my friends who had been invited to attend this party. The party was an Easter celebration for Emily. My friends and I set up decorations, cookies, drinks, games, eggs, and all sorts of fun. We dyed Easter Eggs, played with a kite, made candy necklaces, played Simon Says, played Pin the Egg on the Bunny, hunted for Easter Eggs, laughed, loved, and enjoyed one another. The day was so so fun! Emily had a great time! My friends love Emily and she loves them too. Around 5:30, Emily and I spend dinner together at McAlisters before I dropped her off at gym at 6. The day was so so great! Every effort I put into this party was extremely rewarded. I am so thankful for all my friends and their help. Here are the pics and Emily's commentary too! :) 

best buddys‏
Sent:Thu 4/16/09 7:08 PM
Attachments: 5 attachments
Emily pla...JPG (64.0 KB), Emily and...JPG (56.1 KB), Emily diy...JPG (45.8 KB), 2009 east...JPG (37.5 KB),2009 east...JPG (30.3 KB)
Hi Brandy
I had a wonderful time with you yeasterday. hear are my pichers from the easter party .
Im sory if i got thim to you late . I have had a bisy day with track . i got first in walking and 2nd in runing long jump. i did better from last year!
hear are my bunnys you gave me i will enjoy playing with thim i have them siting still anoph to take the picher for thay love moveing around like me.
you wont to know what i thought of the party ? i was grate i realy injoyed it all that its hard to pick  my faveret part. I enjoyed being with your friends .
 my sister got me a colage year book im shere it has some of your friends in it . if you would like to get to gether next wen. it would have to be after 12. but  if your to bisy with school thats ok i will eather call or text you and tell you how i did with Gymnastice.
hear from you soon!
your friend Emily

Emily B.

Friday, April 17, 2009


"The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelivers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For we do not preach ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus' sake. For God, who said, "Let light shine out of darkness," made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ."
2 Cor. 4:4-6
So live and so study and so serve and so preach and so write that Jesus Christ, the crucified and rised God, be the only boast of this generation: to live and speak in such a way that the worth of "Christ crucified" is seen and savored by more and more people.
"Therefore, I urge you, brothers, in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God-this is your spiritual act of worship. Do not conform any longer 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 God's will is-his good, pleasing, and perfect will."
Romans 12:1-2
"This is a trustworty saying that deserves full acceptance (and for this we labor and strive), that we have put our hope in the living God, who is the savior of all men, and especially of those who believe."
1 Tim. 4:9-10
Therefore, every breath we take, every time our heart beats, every day that the sun rises, every moment we see with our eyes or hear with our ears or speak with our mouths or walk with our legs is, for now, a free and undeserved gift to sinners who deserve only judgment.
But for those who see the merciful hand of God in every breath they take and give credit where it is due, Jesus Christ will be seen and savored as the great Purchaser of every undeserved breath. Every heartbeat will be received as a gift from His hand.
Everything-Tim Hughes
God in my living
There in my breathing
God in my waking
God in my sleeping
God in my resting
There in my working
God in my thinking
God in my speaking
Be my everything
Be my everything
Be my everything
Be my everything
God in my hoping
There in my dreaming
God in my watching
God in my waiting
God in my laughing
There in my weeping
God in my hurting
God in my healing
Be my everything
Be my everything
Be my everything
Be my everything
Christ in me
Christ in me
Christ in me
The Hope of Glory
Christ in me
Christ in me
Christ in me
The Hope of Glory
God in my hoping
There in my dreaming
God in my watching
God in my waiting
God in my laughing
There in the weeping
God in my hurting
God in my healing

Monday, April 13, 2009

In Christ

Christ is where I find...
My Worth-not in dollar or cent sings, not in value of amount
My Comfort-not in Hallmark cards, not in other's arms
My Love-not in romantic films or romantic men
My Courage-not in a cheer squad, not in people's words
My Acceptance-not in cliques or groups, not in universities 
My Energy-not in caffeine or adderall
My Peace-not in a massage or sleep machines
My Friend-not in individuals in auburn or montgomery
My Identity-not in clothes, jewelry, or fashion
My Provider-not in WalMart, not in internet
My Wisdom-not in subjects or majors
My Future-not in my plans or in my expectations
My Present-not in situations or in conversations
My Foundation-not in teachings or theologies
My Truth- not changing and not ending
My Security-not in myself not in others

Saturday, April 11, 2009

Isaiah 53

 1 Who has believed our message 

       and to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?

 2 He grew up before him like a tender shoot, 
       and like a root out of dry ground. 
       He had no beauty or majesty to attract us to him, 
       nothing in his appearance that we should desire him.

 3 He was despised and rejected by men, 
       a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. 
       Like one from whom men hide their faces 
       he was despised, and we esteemed him not.

 4 Surely he took up our infirmities 
       and carried our sorrows, 
       yet we considered him stricken by God, 
       smitten by him, and afflicted.

 5 But he was pierced for our transgressions, 
       he was crushed for our iniquities; 
       the punishment that brought us peace was upon him, 
       and by his wounds we are healed.

 6 We all, like sheep, have gone astray, 
       each of us has turned to his own way; 
       and the LORD has laid on him 
       the iniquity of us all.

 7 He was oppressed and afflicted, 
       yet he did not open his mouth; 
       he was led like a lamb to the slaughter, 
       and as a sheep before her shearers is silent, 
       so he did not open his mouth.

 8 By oppression and judgment he was taken away. 
       And who can speak of his descendants? 
       For he was cut off from the land of the living; 
       for the transgression of my people he was stricken.

 9 He was assigned a grave with the wicked, 
       and with the rich in his death, 
       though he had done no violence, 
       nor was any deceit in his mouth.

 10 Yet it was the LORD's will to crush him and cause him to suffer, 
       and though the LORD makes his life a guilt offering, 
       he will see his offspring and prolong his days, 
       and the will of the LORD will prosper in his hand.

 11 After the suffering of his soul, 
       he will see the light of life and be satisfied; 
       by his knowledge my righteous servant will justify many, 
       and he will bear their iniquities.

 12 Therefore I will give him a portion among the great,
       and he will divide the spoils with the strong,
       because he poured out his life unto death, 
       and was numbered with the transgressors. 
       For he bore the sin of many, 
       and made intercession for the transgressors.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Real Judge of Greeksing

I thought you may enjoy emily's take on GreekSing as well:

Hi Brandy
thank you for coming and saporting me at greek sing i had fun im looking into doing more next year !
you were asking me about my opinon in greek sing this year?
I wont you to tell Chatly that i sow her sarotys dance and the first to ceach  my aticion in being good! im not saying that becose of her eather. one more thing you ask about me seeing AOII  ? i didn't get to see thim i was on the elaveter . there are a few i seam to miss and that was one of thim. only sow a little of AOII  and sow 14 saroritys . I haven't desided yet how gets 1st 2net and 3erd yet . but i have narowed it doun to 5 winers .
 Chi Omega , kappa kappa Gamma , Kappa Dalta ,Delta Gamma , and Zeta Tau Alpha . do you have any friends in these goups ? if so i may have something for thim.
you allso sead Best buddies beat all of the sarortys for frist place  . i  agree with all the aplse we were geting.
i picked thes as jugeing i know the rouls for judeing and what thay look for !
Hear from you soon !
your friend Emily

Emily B.

Greek Sing

Last night was my first experience of Greek Sing at Auburn. For those who are not familiar with this term, Greek Sing is like a talent show for all the sororities. Each group goes up there and does a dance/performance to music focused on their chosen theme. I enjoyed some, hated most, and laughed at them all. However, I caught myself nodding to the beat and singing songs which kept me overall entertained. The main reason I went to it was for the Best Buddies show at the end as if they are a sorority. Even though I didn't get to dance with my buddy like everyone else (Emily told me that I signed up too late and there's no way I could learn the difficult routine in a month :) haha), I was going to sit through this 3 hour show (6:30Pm-9:30 Pm) to watch them anyways. So, when it was time for my buddy to go on stage, I ran down and to the center to grab a chair. In the most typical soccer mom way possible, I sat their nervous, excited, and humored as I cheered and had my camera ready. The announcer introduced them by saying, "The Best Buddies dance was choreographed by a buddy herself, Emily Belk." Ohh I was so proud! As this group of about 5 college students and their buddies danced to "Summer Time" from High School Musical, the crowd responded with excitement, humility, and encouragement. It's really neat to see hundreds of my friends, classmates, and teachers support and be enlightened on the organization I spend much of my time in. Most of my friends know Emily by now anyways, so it was fun for them to see her finally perform as well. This experience taught me so much by seeing the way others can show their hearts when a group that is more challenged takes the initiative to fit in by coming and doing exactly what everyone else was doing. I ended my night by realizing the judges were totally unfair. Best Buddies should have been first place for sure!! Even though they weren't on paper, I'm sure they captured first place in many people's hearts last night.

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Best Buddies Scavenger Hunt

This weekend has completely worn me out. The thought of Monday coming tomorrow makes my brain hurt. I will post later on the events of the weekend, but I first have to update you on my Best Buddy, Emily. March has been tough for our gatherings. She has been extra busy wrapping up the Winter events of gym, cheer, and bowling. This girl really stays so so busy. With Midterms and Spring Break also being in March, it put a bit of a damper on mine and Emily's times together. This week we had planned to see each other twice. We had a scheduled Easter Party on Thursday but it was cancelled due to the weather. On Saturday, the nation wide organization of Best Buddies had an even called Midnight Madness. You can see more info about that online. It's an all day scavenger hunt with the Buddies. It started at like 11 AM. I had already signed up for another service project on Saturday before I knew of this. I spent the day doing service work in the community through a church supported event called My Jerusalem. My team and I went to a town called Salem where the tornado messed up pretty bad to do some work at a church with damage. After I was finished at my work site (8:00AM-1:PM), I went to meet up with Emily. When I met up with Emily around 1:30, she was finishing up the Scavenger Hunt. So me and another girl who did My Jerusalem and her buddy all decided to just spend the rest of the day together doing the scavenger hunt on our own. 

We started at the library on campus and Emily and Cheryl (my friend, Sallie's special buddy)) took a photo acting like they were asleep on the steps to complete the item on the list that said to take a picture sleeping in a strange place. 
Then the four of us walked through Samford lawn all the way down Magnolia. The next picture was of one of Cheryl and Emily crossing the street. Then we stopped at a church to take a picture at a church. As we were discussing our plans to complete the tasks of taking pictures with firemen at the fire dept. and a police at the police station, a police car started heading our way. We flagged him down and he pulled over into the bank parking lot. There, he allowed us to take pictures with him and his police car. The girls were thrilled. It was so great how he handled the situation and was extremely kind to them. 
We walked down to the fire station where Emily and Cheryl took pictures with the VERY attractive firemen. The guys allowed them to put on their jackets and hats so the photos were quite amusing. The firemen treated the girls like celebrities. It was such a fun time to hang out with them and see the way they truly care about the citizens of Auburn, especially those with needs. From there, we drove the girls to snow biz to complete the last item on the list for the day. Take a picture with your buddy and a snow biz. Of course, Emily and I had to discuss that it's okay to spill and make a mess when you eat snow biz.
 She cracks me up when she works herself up over the simple things. I appreciate how she desires to do things right. For example, she got upset because she couldn't figure out how to eat a snow biz without getting it all over the place. I convinced her that this is a time when you can make the biggest mess you would like. Some of my friends met us at the place so it was fun to all hang out and continue spending time together. We stayed at Snow Biz just hanging out for like an hour. Emily is really doing well around my friends and they all love her. She has the biggest heart and challenges all of us to stay focused on the important things in life like caring about one another, spending time together, and helping each other at all times. The day had been long, so around 4:15, Emily and I headed to her house. On our way home, Emily and I had a great one on one conversation where she asked me if it was okay that she talked behind someone else's back. I got to help her out and share with her the way I go about this problem so it was great to feel like I was actually benefitting Emily and the way she lives and relates to her friends.  

The rest of the blog, I am importing her email about the day so you can get to know the precious heart and soul of Emily Belk:

Hi Brandy
hear are the pichers of us . my favrit is the one with the flowers it reminds me of the fun time together and what joy you can have with a lot of buddys.
we feed gold fish , preposed to a stragher . got to the aubrun book store take pichers with auburn books, boys puting macup on .
1.we feed gold fish ,
2. preposed to a stragher .
3. got to the aubrun book store take pichers with auburn books,
4.boys puting macup on
5. find the aubrun sine and take a picher in front of  it
6.pretend to play instrmints in front of  the Haley center
7. make a permid in front of  the egale
8. in Auburn book store find some auburn hats to try on
9.vist the rado stasion
10. picher with the polese
11. vist the fier stachon.
i will give you more later but i know we all need to rest !
see you tue. I hope you injoy are greek sing show.
your friend Emily

Emily B

Friday, April 3, 2009


These are some lyrics from the song "Times" by Tenth Avenue North. 

I hear You say,
"My love is over. It's underneath.
It's inside. It's in between.
The times you doubt Me, when you can't feel.
The times that you question, 'Is this for real? '
The times you're broken.
The times that you mend.
The times that you hate Me, and the times that you bend.
Well, My love is over, it's underneath.
It's inside, it's in between.
These times you're healing, and when your heart breaks.
The times that you 
feel like you're falling from grace.
The times you're hurting.
The times that you heal.
The times you go hungry, and are tempted to steal.
The times of confusion, in chaos and pain.
I'm there in your sorrow, under the weight of your shame.
I'm there through your heartache.
I'm there in the storm.
My love I will keep you, by My pow'r alone.
I don't care where you fall, where you have been.
I'll never forsake you, My love never ends.
It never ends."

Thursday, April 2, 2009


This past week has been so interesting. Here's the highlights.
Monday- normal day I suppose. We had an awesome night at Bible Study. (GBS) We are studying Romans and it is literally life-changing. The way the Holy Spirit has lead, taught, and shared through each girl in the group is mind boggling. From learning identity in Christ to trying to grasp the sovereignty and love of Him has been quite the journey. After Bible Study, Katie B and I got to spend some much overdue time together. I am so thankful for the way she has mentored and encouraged me; The way she has literally been at my side during this whole season of life has just really showed me what friendship and the body of Christ is all about. Then, I drove home to Wetumpka and got to sleep with my best friend, pooh-bear. 

Tuesday- I was not looking forward to this day whatsoever. I had to go to the doctor in Montgomery to get some tests run and blood taken. I also had to go to the hospital to get a barium test done for my throat. This morning was so uncomfortable, embarrassing, and just blah. The stuff I had to drink was like taking a shot of alkacelser and then two dixie cups full of a cloudy, chalky- weird substance. It was just plain miserable. However, my savior promises good to every situation. My good was the lunch I got to have with my mother at Jim-N-Nicks. It was so great to just hang out and talk about life with my mom. I would do that test over if that meant getting to have the time with my mom again. Tuesday night was quite an experience. I took my friend that I met on the trip to Chicago, Han (international student from South Korea.. so Asian!), to a dinner that some of my friends have every Tuesday night. The dinner consists of a bunch of my friends and then a bunch of international students. It's just a dinner they started with a few friends and it has grown into a weekly dinner and hang out time for people of all races to be together. Han had an awesome time. He was quite the hit of the party. I enjoyed getting to know new faces from China and reuniting with some friends from Turkey. I really love people from other countries. I am not sure what it is about them, but they just melt my heart and make me want to stay in conversation as long as I can. LOVE THEM. 

Wednesday- The normal day of class lead into a brilliant evening of Jesus. Some friends of mine and I drove to Wetumpka around 4 PM to help out at a youth group service at Moulder United Methodist Church. The church is where Rebecca and Trip Healey are youth ministers. Trip asked me to come and bring a few friends to be a panel for the youth to ask questions about dating/relationships/ and guy/girl issues. Since I was bringing two amazing musicians along, he also asked us to lead worship. So, after some practice, me and two guys led worship for the youth. Brennan and I played guitars and sang while Chandler blew me away on the keyboard and sang as well. We sang four amazing songs and it went really well. I was a bit nervous because I have never really done that kind of thing before. Most people came up to me and said.. "I didn't know you sang and played guitar!" My response was a silly, "Yea, I picked it up yesterday." It is something I have just done on my own and spare time but I really enjoy it. Some things I learned being on stage was this. It is very difficult for people to know all the words of each song, play each chord of each song, and keep Jesus the center of their mind simultaneously. I prayed and really tried to worship- a vertical experience with just my Savior and I. I think it went well and I really had a great time. The panel was really funny. Their questions were the normal student things:
- Why are boys so perverted around girls?
-Why do girls never date the "good guys?"
-Why do girls have so much drama?
-Why do girls wear tight clothes and then get mad when guys stare?
-What kind of guy are you attracted to?
-Why is sex wrong when you are in love?
-What is one piece of advice for a guy or a girl in junior high/ high school on relationships?
A group of four girls answered the boys questions and a group of guys answered the questions from the girls. Humorous, enlightening, and encouraging are words I would use to wrap it up. 

Here's one thing the Lord taught me:
Everything they were asking and everything I was hearing from Him was all centered around Identity. I know I have been harping on this for a while now, but the importance of knowing who you are continues to blow my socks off. Life would be so much easier and less controversial for me if I would have just pursued that answer sooner. I was so obsessed with friends, sports, and academics in high school that I allowed those things to identify who I was. Sure, I was still confident at who I was but I wasn't who God wanted me to be. I was who this friend or this coach or this situation wanted me to be at the time being. When you start to develop the understanding that you are a child of the Lord most high, you gain worth, love, acceptance, confidence, hope, purpose, meaning, beauty, and AH so much. The Lord has entrusted so much to His children so undeservingly. When I am confident in who I am in Christ, every thing else falls into place. I promise you that. When I loose sight of the cross ( I do this daily), I start to conform to other people or my thoughts and then I am left miserable, empty and lost. He is continuing to show me my need for a Savior, my need for a Friend, my need for a Provider, my need for a Lover, my need for a Father, my need for Life, my need for HIM. My last advice to those kids was this: Know that what you do today will honestly affect your future and find your Identity IN CHRIST ALONE.