Saturday, July 22, 2017

We are MOVIN'!

Hello Friends!

Thank you for your support over the years, I'm happy to announce that I have a new space and would be grateful if you joined me! There is a place at the bottom of my new blog to subscribe as well. May the next season by God's grace be just as fruitful!

Click here to go to my new blog!



Thursday, November 17, 2016

Here's my hands, here's my heart

Hello! Today I am sharing with you a beautiful song by Seeker & Servant

I think they have a very special sound. Very organic despite all of the electronics, they are great live too. Have a great day! Continue to worship! Free

Thursday, November 10, 2016

In the Silence You Speak

Good Morning! If you're not able to see the video below, please click on the web browser version so you are able to hear the music! I believe those subscribers may not be able to see the video from their email. Here is a song You Speak that I've had on replay since last week. It really encourages me to (have the courage to) sit still. Sitting still is difficult for people for so many different reasons. But it is so much harder when I'm hoping God to speak into my life while I'm running around "doing my own thing". Every time that I have finally sat still and let my heart be silent, He speaks. I can only encourage you to do the same! 
Here are the lyrics:
You Speak - Audrey Assad
You liberate me from my own noise and my own chaosFrom the chains of a lesser law You set me freeYou liberate me from my own noise and my own chaosFrom the chains of a lesser law You set me free
In the silence of the heart You speakIn the silence of the heart You speakAnd it is there that I will know YouAnd You will know meIn the silence of the heartYou speak, You speak.
You satisfy me till I am quiet and confidentIn the work of the Spirit I cannot see,You satisfy me till I am quiet and confidentIn the work of the Spirit I cannot see.
In the silence of the heart You speak.

Thank you for the comments last week!

Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Home Sweet Home

The experience of being in Germany gave me a lot to think about and a lot of time to think. I’d say the beginning of my time in Germany could be categorized as the time where I was thinking about the concept of home. What is a home? Is it a group of people? Is it a geographical place? Is it a group of memories from my past? Is home a feeling I have with a certain person? I grappled with these questions and came to a conclusion, (which turned out to be only half of a conclusion because my return to “home” uprooted the pat answer I had). 

As the time in Germany was coming to an end I then began to think about reunions and relationships. I learned relationships can be maintained over a distance, sometimes. Physical presence in a certain season of a relationship is not always necessary, in other stages of relationships it is. The distance and time acted as a sifter, which in the long run was something for which I could be grateful. I was excited to see my family (real family, not a concept here J though I thought about this too), friends and my dog. In my mind I imagined some exuberant reunion where I would feel completely reconnected to my loved ones, where I’d be on the same page with them, like I was before I left. That’s where I began sensing the disillusionment around my idea of reunion, because I didn’t immediately connect with my mother, father or sister (I think my dog and I are still on the same page).

Time had passed, the people, my family, I was looking at were different and I was different too. Our reunion was that not of the same people, celebrating “starting where we left off”, it was a meeting of new people.

This was somehow the second half of my conclusion about “home”. If home is a person or a group of persons, is it still home if the person has changed? Are you further from home if the person is not in character even recognizable?

For this reason the “reconnecting” didn’t happen as fast as I had hoped, if at all. It felt like there was an ocean between us, and, for many months there was. My conclusion (for now) on “reconnecting” is this, it does not happen in a moment but it is reestablished through the beauty of the mundane together. I realized this with my dog, I could only assure him that I wouldn’t leave (without him) again by being there for him day after day. Giving him his food, taking him for his walk, little by little I hope he doesn’t expect me to be gone for so long (we are still researching time perception in animals). The same goes for my close loved ones, our “reconnecting” is a whole new connection; they are not the same, I am not the same. Only as we spend time together, little by little do I discover what they’ve become and can reveal who I’ve turned into (for now).

Through it all I found my answer about “home” in a song the Lord had given me actually right before I left,
“I gave you plans and you broke them in two, and gave me back something more pleasing to you – a heart that could trust through all toils and snares, a heart whose only home could be found home in you.”
From the beginning I had the answer but I was veiled from it’s meaning until I had toiled and came to an untrue conclusion. My heart, my eternal home is in God. If my home was in my family, they would pass away. If my home was a geographical place, it would pass away. But my home is neither of those things, I get to continually make God’s presence my home as I go through my life with Him there, my best friend.

I think today is a great day to stop and make some time to evaluate where you are rooted and where your home is.

Sunday, November 6, 2016

Henceforth We Are Friends!

Hello! A lot happened this week (says everyone), but the thing worth most sharing is the reoccurring theme that kept appearing at unexpected times. I was running late for one of my classes (also a theme I am noticing) and in my rush I forgot my calculator. This would have been devastating on any given day, for you engineering majors you know your calculator is an extension of our right hand, but this day it was especially horrible because I had a statics exam. I dug around in my backpack a little more (now officially late for Spanish) and couldn’t find it, I could only conclude that my backpack was like a magician’s hat, I had practically everything inside there except my calculator and a white bunny. Now the reality of my missing calculator was really setting in and I only had a couple of options, buy a new one (not really an option because they cost more than a whole Benjamin Franklin), text a friend who is hopefully around and could give me theirs (also not likely because all my engineering friends are scattered across campus in brightly lit labs doing the homework with their calculator).  There was no way I could do this exam without one, I could of course show all of the work on how to do the problem, but if I didn’t give a numeric answer then my only hope was mercy and partial credit. The last thought my already-overwhelmed brain thought was, Lord, Help me! Of course at this moment my good engineering friend walked by and I knew she would have her trusty calculator she would hopefully lend me. This encounter was amazing for two reasons, one, I met this friend our freshman year. Since then I have never met her while walking around campus, this was the second time in three years. Secondly, I was amazed that as soon as I thought for help, the Lord provided, instantaneously.  My mind went to the Psalm 18:6, In my distress I called upon the LORD, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears.

The second instance (I’ll make this narrative shorter) was two days after, I had just finished my time in the fluorescent, all-but-silent-except-for-furious-typing lab and was walking towards my car. When I parked there that morning I knew the lot was far away and secluded but I hadn’t anticipated coming back in the evening. Yet I found myself walking up the stairs, about to take the turn onto the unlit path leading to the parking lot, yikes. Part of me said, “aw, come on! Think of all the places you’ve been abroad and nothing happened” the other part thought, “but still! There is no way I’m walking down that creepy dark road, but I have to get my car”. At that moment, (am I getting predictable now?) a different friend from my math class came down the road in her car and with an excited “Is that Genevieve? Get in, where are you going?” I was delivered right to my car. The theme should be obvious by now, it definitely is to me and I will never forget it. Psalm 18:6 isn’t just a verse that I read about someone else’s life, but it was now a part of my story and my truth about how God hears me, delivers me and cares for me. Whenever I had read Psalm 18:6 before I thought “distress” meant, you know, being hotly pursued by angry men on horses with spears and your death-wish. From David’s story we know this was true, but I believe David knew God showed his love and care even when David didn’t need to be rescued. If God was only the one who answered us when we were in trouble, He would only be our savior but Jesus made it clear, that henceforth we are his friends.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Good to Me!

Happy Thursday! Well I couldn't help myself.
There is a gorgeous white powdery snow starting to fall here in CT which is most definitely the highlight of my rough week. Something I've been thinking about this entire week is how my peace shouldn't be impacted by everything changing around me. My peace shouldn't be there only if I'm having a good day. Faith, peace and love should be totally independent from fluctuating feelings.
It can seem at times that many things are against us such as current situations or trials. But I've learned as I work through them, to walk by faith that it will be okay. That the trial is there to develop something in me! If you ever feel the same way, remember Romans 8:28, " And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose."
In my walk with God so far He has never sat down and gave me the whole picture. He gives me pieces. He tells me one step then the next then the next. If he gave me the whole picture, I wouldn't need faith, right? But faith in God is what He loves, it's exactly what He is hoping to find when He returns! (Luke 18:8)
Here is a song from Audrey Assad, Good to Me. I hope as you reconsider the situations that are giving you a difficult time in your life, that God is good, all of his ways are mercy and truth! (Pslam 25:10)
Feel free to leave  a comment about your experience, too!
Good to Me - Audrey Assad
I put all my hope in the truth of Your promise
And I steady my heart on the ground of Your goodness
When I'm bowed down with sorrow I will lift up Your name
And the foxes in the vineyard will not steal my joy

Because You are good to me, good to me

I lift up my eyes to the hills where my help is found
Your voice fills the night - raise my head up to hear the sound
Though fires burn all around me I will praise You, my God
And the foxes in the vineyard will not steal my joy

Because You are good to me, good to me

Your goodness and mercy shall follow me
All my life
I will trust in Your promise

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

Tuesday Melody

Good Morning! 

As you know sporadically I will share a song with you that has come and spoke into my life. I'm going to start doing this on a regular basis. Every Tuesday I'm going to link a youtube video of a song. I haven't come up with a catchy name for it yet, next week I will have something! Without hesitation, here is Secret Place by Phil Wickham featuring Madison Cunningham. I think their duet is so beautiful and the song captures how God is our refuge when everything is changing. He's not the last thing we run to once we've tried everything else, He is the first thing we run to!

"Speaking to yourselves in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord;" (Ephesians 5:19)

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Get Up!

It was raining and I was late, which normally had nothing to do with each other, except I was in Germany on my bike rushing towards an exam. The rain had made the cobblestone slick as ice. I took the curve too fast and my wheel wedged into the track of the streetcar and I was flung over the front handlebars of the bike

Obviously, it all happened in slow-motion so I had a lot of time to think about my life in the 0.004 seconds I was in the air.  I knew as soon as I hit the ground that I would get back up again, I would have to, right? People don’t fall on the ground and never get up their whole life. I couldn’t stay on the slick cobblestone forever. The moment I stopped sliding I pressed into my palms to stand back up and in that moment the Lord spoke to me. Encouragingly, he said “Yes! Get back up!”

I don’t know about you, but I’ve had my share of situations that “knock me off my feet”. They may be losing friendships or family, doing poorly on an exam, being on the receiving end of a mean person and a mean comment, the list goes on. In situations like these, it’s not so obvious, as it is when we physically fall down, that we are injured. Many times life goes on, but we never have gotten up emotionally from being hurt by a certain person. That stunts our growth. That hurts us. That weighs on us.

For the longest time, while I took a math exam, I would heard certain people and their comments about how I should be better at math. Though I am not around these people anymore, their comments remain because I never got up emotionally.

Falling off my bike prompted me to think about areas of my life where I was stagnant, where I was still on the cobblestone. This revelation lead me to search my heart and see where I was hurting and to bring it before God. 

I believe God wants very much that we are whole in heart, meaning that we don’t let ourselves be defined by negative experiences, as it is so easy to do. For example, childhoods marred by bullying, instead of moments of discovery, friendships coming to an end instead of friendships being found, etc.  It’s a new way of thinking, but I believe that is exactly the point. We are not to conform to the world, but to be renewed, by the transforming of our minds (Romans 12:2).

God changed my perspective of falling off a bike being an embarrassing thing, to an encouraging moment that I will always get back up through His help. I have fallens o many times since then, but His encouragement has been my strength. How much more of my thinking is He waiting to transform, if only I were to bring it to him in prayer?

Thursday, May 12, 2016

Part I: Self-Discipline & My Story

     There’s something I’ve always admired about competitive athletes, professional instrumentalists and martial artists. I played an instrument for many years and know that the final concert is the fruition of dozens of hours in practice. The Olympic sprinters and gymnasts have the world’s attention for one or two minutes, but they practiced for years.
     When I was in high school I had a parent of a friend say, “those were my glory days” and I was a little bewildered because I was drowning in homework, sports schedules, music practice, church outings, group projects, in addition to trying to spend time with family and nurture friendships that I still have today. I thought, “What is this guy thinking? I don’t even have a minute to breath!”
      There were long papers due that required a lot of research, I had to memorize instrumental pieces, fix my collapsing clay pieces, go to several hour long sport practices, stay after with teachers to answer lingering questions, find my way around the college campus where I was taking classes my last two years of high school and like I said, still spend time with my family to get through all of the psychological, emotional changes that happen in the pressure cooker of high school.
    Flash forward several years and I’m in college.  Two things I noticed. The first thing I realized my freshmen year was, “Ah! The freedom!”. No weekly due dates, no practice, no accountability that I show up to class….no discipline. It always took me about a month into the semester to get a schedule going for myself. Even still I struggled to feel as productive as I was in high school.
       The second thing was that my spiritual life was slowly declining as the discipline in the other areas of my life dwindled. High school went something like this: Wake up, spend time in prayer and the Word, gym/run, breakfast, school 7:30-2:00, sports practice 2:15-5:15, dinner, walk, homework, read  & catch up with my parents. College went something like this: wake up, get coffee and try to read the Bible, get distracted mentally by everything I need to do that day, make food for the whole day on the road, go to class, get a coffee/space out and think of all the things I need to do, go to another class, eat dinner, try to study but was too tired so went home “to study” but end up socializing with my parents for “too long”.
      Not having a set schedule left me feeling like I should “always be doing something else”. When I was relaxing, I thought “I should really be studying” and when I was studying I was frustrated at myself for feeling like I dropped the ball.
      I just described to you my freshmen year of high school. The most difficult aspect of that year wasn’t the classes, the adjustment, the exams or my 20 hour work schedule at a cafĂ©, It was the lingering feeling that “I could have done better”. So that summer I made the noble decision to start training for a marathon. The first step was a half marathon.
      Come my sophomore year I had something in my schedule that couldn’t be moved, my training. Watch how it changed my routine: wake up, walk, pray, cook food, go to class, have lunch, go home and run, come back for class, dinner, study, come home walk the dog, eat dinner, socialize with my parents. About that same time my spiritual discipline started to flourish and a lot of my fears, worries and doubts that had accumulated in time faded into the distance (or I left them in the dust as I was running super fast J ).
      I’ve asked God to help me create a schedule and to show me how I should be spending  my time. So far I have noticed that I rest better, study more efficiently and have been more faithful to my prayer time with Him since I incorporated only one or two new small disciplines. In high school I was accountable to teachers and deadlines, but now I am accountable to myself and to the One granting me the 1,440 minutes every day.

Have you also at one point experienced the joy of being disciplined? Spiritually? Mentally? What are your thoughts about self-discipline being listed as the fruit of the Spirit? (Galatians 5:22) Leave your comments below J

We are MOVIN'!

Hello Friends! Thank you for your support over the years, I'm happy to announce that I have a new  space and would be grateful if you ...