Thursday, January 20, 2005

Potentially changing plans

The night that I was able to call my girlfriend we talked for quite a while, and we came up with an alternative plan to my going to Mexico after I graduate, because of the finances issue. Even though the other is still a possibility, a more likely plan is that she will come here to the States to be with me, and I will work here, where I won't have to worry so much about being able to make payments. We are praying about the ultimate decision, which is in the Lord's hands, but the latter seems like a better idea at this point.

Thoughts on God

Here is a slightly modified excerpt of a recent email to a close friend of mine, but it applies to everyone:

It is vitally important to have God as the center of your life and also your relationship. When that is right, the other things may not be perfect, but they tend to be better and you can handle them better (because you have the right attitude about them and have your priorities straight). Remember, Christ would have come to earth and died on the cross even if you were the only one who would be saved by that action. Your true value has no relation to your abilities or deficiencies, your victories or failures, others' opinions of you, not even your opinion of yourself. You are a valuable person because God says so. What He says goes because not only did He create you, but He wrote His love and value for you in His own blood on the cross. He died to save you, and all you can do to thank Him is to constantly seek to be closer to Him and more like Him, which is something that He wants anyway! :D Isn't God amazing? He has already take the first step, and even several more steps, on His way toward us. He has done everything that could be done for us without removing our personal freedom. And he is EAGERLY waiting for us to make the slightest move His direction so He can save us. Just as the Holy Spirit takes our small prayers and transforms them into something more before the throne, so God is waiting for us to do anything that He can transform and take as an excuse to save us. I don't even think that He is patient about it! I think God is waiting *impatiently*! That is not to say that he is angry or upset about the wait, but simply that he can't WAIT for us to come to Him. We don't even need to reach out to grasp His hand. He will seize on the very IMPULSE to call on Him. And the more we open ourselves to His influence, the more we remember that this world is not our home and focus on the heavenly things rather than the earthly, the more we turn our eyes upon Jesus and the things of this world grow strangely dim, the more time we spend in the Word; the stronger His presence will be felt in our lives, the more amazingly He can use us, and the clearer His will for us will be.

Friday, January 14, 2005


So many things have happened since my last blog, but most of them in the last couple of weeks. This semester I have taken another on-campus job: ESL tutoring. Because after I graduate I plan to work in Mexico teaching English for 1-3 years, it seemed particularly appropriate that I get some extra experience doing that before I go. I'll be working in that job about 16 hours/week, in my regular English tutorial about 4 hours/week, fitting in as many appointments as I can in my independent tutoring, and also doing freelance work online, mostly proofreading.

The main reason I am doing all this work is because I am going to work in Mexico, and I want as few loans as possible, since I probably will not be making very much money down there and will have a hard time making payments as it is. If I can pay off my bank loan before I go, that will leave only my two Stafford loans, which I've only been getting this year.

I'm finally registered. I was a bit stressed when I came to finances and realized that I would need $2300 I didn't have just to register. But I talked to my brother and a good friend, got a few private loans, and I've been able to cover that, plus I will not have to pay back those loans until I can, with no interest, of course. So I did register late, but still early enough for it not to matter. Plus all my classes are 400-level, so I was sure I wouldn't have to worry about them being too full.

Speaking of classes, I have fewer hours this semester than usual (about 14), but it is going to be a hard semester academically. I have three upper-division English classes (essays galore), one upper-division religion class (which I need my Greek for, and for which I must write 8 sermons), and I have to write my Honors thesis and present it. Lots of reading, and lots of writing. Add to that my work schedule, and you can see that it is going to be a hard semester. Pray for me.

There are a couple of things I am excited about, though. I will once again be in the play this year. I am not the hero this time, but I am still a major character. I am Leonato from Shakespeare's Much Ado About Nothing. I am very excited about that. But the best thing that will happen this semester (possibly excepting graduation) will be during Spring Break, when I go on the mission trip to Mexico that I went on last year. We are going to a different city this time, but we will again be building a church, holding evangelistic meetings, inviting people in the streets, and having VBS. I'm guessing that once again I will be the unofficial song leader at our worships as a group. That was so much fun. The main difference for me this time will be the fact that my girlfriend will be coming up from Southern Mexico to see me! I'm so excited about that. I can't wait to see her. I haven't seen her since last summer, which was before we started dating. I miss her so much.

I was very excited when I received my Christmas present from her, but she didn't let me see all of it. I had to get out certain things without seeing the rest until she tells me I can. But one of the things I got out had $25 in it so that I could buy a phone card to call her! Isn't she awesome? And I'm going to call her tonight. :D

I hope you have as great an evening as I'm going to have.