Make a difference with your gifts this holiday season.
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
Thursday, November 6, 2008
my mind has been slightly overwhelmed with thoughts in the last few weeks but there's this thing we refer to as school that just keeps distracting me from them.
God has been teaching me so much lately regardless of the fact that I honestly haven't been seeking out much to be taught. He has been continually speaking to my heart about just how powerful he really is. He has the power to take care of my country more than any one man could or ever will, he has the power to restore and free my heart from mistakes of my past and he has the power to change and entire world and how I could very well have the privilege of helping if I so desire.
History was made the other day and regardless of your political beliefs or whoever you voted for it's reassuring to know that God is bigger than my government. I had never given him that much credit before honestly but that's something he has been reassuring me a lot of in the last year. All I can do is serve my God and he'll take care of me. The man in the White House won't change that. (But I am still so excited that I got to be part of this! I voted. It was fun getting involved and learning about my government. I can't wait to continue.)
"No matter where you are in your life today, be encouraged; God is in the restoration business. He is already at work redeeming your yesterdays and building your tomorrow." -Christopher Surber-
"He restores my soul." -Psalm 23:3-
Not to bore you with the many thoughts I've had on this for the past weeks but I find so much hope in this. Mistakes I have made in the past do not have to hold any power over me. My heart belongs to God and does not have to be trapped by the sins of my past. God restores my soul! The definition of restore: to bring back to an original condition. That in itself encourages me so much.
"I run in the paths of your commands for you have set my heart FREE." -Psalm 119:32
"I eagerly expect and hope that I will in no way be ashamed, but will have sufficient courage so that now as always Christ will be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death." -Philippians 1:20
I'm going to Africa. I have to. There is so much need. But first, I'm going to start making a difference right here. There's need in my own backyard and until I'm on that plane to Africa I'm gonna make a difference right here.
Posted by Randi at 7:37 AM
Saturday, September 27, 2008
Just to continue with my thankful theme I gave my testimony at CRU on Thursday along with 2 others. Throughout the week I had been writing it out and just thinking about the past (which I suppose you have to do if you're going to be talking about it)and then practicing just before CRU with the other 2 I couldn't help but be overwhelmed with gratitude.
I have a story.
One that has a great ending and isn't even close to being over. I have a God who loves me enough that no matter how I mess up he continues to work in my life anyway. And that's the best part: this story isn't even mine. Shoot, if I was given control of writing this thing my happy ending wouldn't come for a while. I'd still be living a life of heartbreak and rebellion but God showed up, gave me a choice and made my story his. He took everything that was gross and disgusting in my life and turned it into something beautiful.
It just amazes me that he does this for us, and that I'm not the only one with a story...with his story.
and I can't wait to see what this chapter holds...
The worst consequence of losing our imagination, our wonder, is that we no longer see the Christward life as an adventure.
Posted by Randi at 5:50 AM
Thursday, September 25, 2008
There are about 75.3 things I learned this summer at/from camp and probably 85.7 more things since the semester has begun but if there is one thing that I learned at camp it was this: There is always something to be grateful for. During training my wonderful and beautiful program director gave me a little journal telling me that I need to write 3 things everyday that I am grateful for cause even when the days get long and you feel like you failed and you just want to sleep there is always something to be grateful for. Frequently she would ask me what my 3 things were for that day. I was grateful for that and remembering that today I thought I would share my 3 with the world.
1. It rained making it possible to wear my brand new rain boots.
2. It rained. :)
3. While I love tennis I had much work today so it got canceled giving me ample time to get everything done.
and just for fun: 4. I'm about to share my testimony at CRU. Just kinda grateful I have a story that ends in Jesus. How can I not be grateful?
thanks bree. <3
Posted by Randi at 3:11 PM
Tuesday, August 19, 2008
I just had the best summer of my life. (I say this as I type from my balcony on Maui.) It's hard for me to look back and put into any kind of words what this summer has meant to me, but I am so thankful for it.
It's hard to believe that I almost didn't go back to Camp Sonshine this summer. Thank God his plans are better than mine. I went back wanting it to be different than last year, knowing it had to be if I was gonna let God do what he wanted. Last summer the one huge regret I had was that that day that I left those kids, I wasn't ready. I wanted just a few more days. I still had so much left to give and I didn't want to take it with me. I refused to have that feeling this year. If I was gonna do it I was gonna give it everything I had. Then I got this "job" as HC and I realized that I just needed to dive into camp. Not worry so much about making sure I still get all my free time with my friends or other homey things but just put my undivided self into camp. I did. God put amazing people into my life who I know I will be friends with forever. My "boss" was an amazing woman of God who challenged me everyday in a new way. She wasn't going to let me walk away from the summer not being a changed person and I am so thankful. Not to mention some of the amazing other staff I got to work with. My counselors were beyond amazing and so many of the other staff just brightened up my everydays.
The best part of my summer...by far...was seeing those kids that were mine last year. It's amazing how they grow up so fast in nine months. Namely one little girl, Lacey. This girl is amazing and it will be so hard for me not to go back and not get to see her. This little girl is just so full of joy and life and just hilarious. I am so beyond thankful that I was able to spend another summer with her.
It was so hard to leave this year. I took that as a sign...something went right and it was nothing but God. There's no way anything that happened this summer was my doing cause if I had enough time to go through the last 3 months with you it would be proof that I am not equipped enough to do what I just did without Him. It's obvious. Praise the Lord.
For the Love of Christ puts us into action... -2 Corinthians 5:14
Posted by Randi at 6:12 PM
Saturday, July 19, 2008
I never spent so much of a day dripping wet. The water was coming out of my shoes.
After an exhausting but THRILLING day at camp in the code red heat me and my counselors went for my second greatest adventure of the summer. We all headed out to Cheeburger Cheeburger where we ate til we could no more, Stacie wowed us with her math skills and after a "standing OOOOOOvation" we proved to the restaurant we work at camp.
After stuffing ourselves til we could eat no more we decided the night was not yet over. Stacie had us all follow her downs backroads followed by dirt roads to a lake that seemed to appear out of no where. I literally had no idea where we were.
I had no idea where the night would go from here. I thought maybe we would sit and talk but when we arrived and found 2 boats full of fisherman who asked us to hold the rope for them and let us pose with their fish I knew it would be a night of laughter.
Long story short, 5 of us wound up jumping in the lake and we all proved we deserve our job once again by entertaining 4 year old "Spiderman" for a good 30 minutes while his dad hooked up the boat to his truck. It not only made our night but I'm pretty sure it made his too. All in all it was by far one of the greatest nights of my summer/life. Certainly a "memory that will last a lifetime". I am so thankful for this summer and these girls have SO much to do with that.
Posted by Randi at 8:38 AM
Saturday, July 12, 2008
In as few words as possible camp has consumed my life and I am completely OK with it. I have made great friends with some amazing people and not to mention being reunited from the children who stole my heart last year and meeting some new children who have quickly taken their own pieces of my heart.
Yesterday we said goodbye to many children. It was the end of the session and many were not coming back. It always hurts to see them leave and take my heart with them. This last session has been amazing. Not gonna lie but last year I had 3 favorites from the summer. One came back the very first day and will be here til the very last, another has not shown her face yet and I'm praying I will see her soon and the last showed up this last session. I have never been so happy as the day I saw him. I hear a scream of "RANDI!!" come from across the room and when I look up I see him smiling this huge smile staring at me and we both just ran to each other. I got the greatest hug EVER and I'll admit I may have shed a tear. This kid was probably my most difficult last year but we became such great friends through it all. I can't help but love him and all I want is to make sure that he and all these kids know how important to me they are but more importantly God. Some of these kids have such horrible lives and many do not receive love from anywhere else. What an AMAZING opportunity to be like Jesus to these children. They are so precious to him some of them have no idea.
Basically the sum of this post is once again the power of love, a love driven by nothing I have but all God. Seeing my kids from last year and hearing from them how much I and camp has meant to them and how much all the cards and things that we are forced to do for them mean to them (yes, they told me these things which I think is pretty awesome!) has just shown me how much love can change a life. There's is nothing I want more for these kids than to know they are loved more than they can know. They have stolen my heart and I am totally OK with it. :)
and from maybe the greatest adventure ever:
Posted by Randi at 8:20 AM
Sunday, June 29, 2008
Posted by Randi at 6:44 PM
Saturday, June 21, 2008
So at Camp Sonshine all HC's and full-time staff carry around the most obnoxious walkies so that we can report lost children, inform others of our every move and so that we can be contacted when we're on one side of camp to hike to the other side to pick up that piece of paper that one kid has and bring it back to the other side again. Because of this I have decided that walkies are better than any workout I could ever come up with on my own, but that is beside the point. This was my walkie, his name was Ken.
Now these aren't just any walkies but they are actually pretty amazing and therefore ridiculously expensive. If something were to happen to it the money to replace it comes out of your own paycheck and considering we don't make that much, that is a large chunk of your summer wages. Of course, a week after I receive "Ken" I learn that when I speak, no one can hear or understand me (not a great quality). Since this obviously was not my fault I got someone else to talk to the man in charge (cause when it comes to walkies I refuse to ever be the one to tell him something is wrong) and he got me a new one. This one worked great and life was swell...til the other day. I was standing in the bus lot trying to get a hold of someone and wondering why they were not answering and why I couldn't hear myself speaking when I walked by someone else with a walkie. After some investigation I found that my once functioning walkie was no longer. It was not functioning in the slightest, wouldn't turn on, couldn't hear or speak. My boss convinced me to just grab one that was not assigned to someone else but when I found one that battery died so Australian Clay traded walkies with me for the day (I am now on walkie #3 for the day). Dan who is the assistant to the walkie boss man decided he would try to fix my walkie before anyone found out but could not so tried to replace it also to no avail. So all day I'm freaking out cause i realize I am about to shell out $500 to play for this walkie that I can only assume I broke. But eventually boss man found out and laughed at me and said he understood and he knew that I did not break it so he gave me another. (#4 for the day and #5 for the summer) and I'm deciding not to tell him that this one doesn't always work either. :)
To sum up my story, while everyone else has had the same walkie for the last 3 weeks and will pry continue to for the summer I am on walkie #5 and hope to stay that way.
Posted by Randi at 9:25 AM
Sunday, June 15, 2008
A while ago I got to go and see Derek Webb and Sara Groves in concert. I've been trying to see D Webb in concert for a long while now and Sara Groves has become a favorite of mine over the last few months. Both have such honesty in their lyrics and you can just feel their hearts when listening to them so I was pumped to see them in concert and it was just as wonderful as I had imagined it would be.
But even better the whole concert was to benefit blood:water baltimore which is linked with blood:water mission, an organization that has stolen my heart in the last year. They are an organiztation dedicated to "tangibly reducing the impact of the HIV/AIDS pandemic while addressing the underlying issues of poverty, injustice and oppression." They build wells and medical facilities so that people with already weakened immune systems due to AIDS no longer have to drink water infested with bacteria. 311 million Africans lack access to clean drinking water and some must travel 6 miles a day just to get any kind of water. Blood:water has been doing something about it and while it seems like a problem too big to handle they've been doing it one step at a time. Amazing.
"We recognize that numbers and statistics are hard to grasp, and that sometimes a step back is necessary to conceptualize the enormity of the HIV/AIDS crisis. Yet we also know that simply standing from a distance with arms thrown in the air is not a solution. We believe in pressing inward, in building relationships and bridges with communities in Africa. We believe in hearing personal stories and walking alongside brothers and sisters who have demonstrated strength and faith in the midst of desperate and tragic situations."
It's hard for me to not want to get behind that. That is what I think Jesus looks like. I could go on for hours but long story short this is my dream "job". I want to work for these people whether it be in Africa or here in the states doing whatever is needed. For now all I can give is my money but I'm excited for the future. I want to make a difference.
Posted by Randi at 3:48 PM
Wednesday, June 11, 2008
Last night I was a few feet away from getting struck by lightning. Granted I was in my car which is supposedly the safest place in a lightning storm but it sure does not feel that when when the lightning cracks in front of you.
...then it started to hail.
it was a fun ride home :)
::this post brought to you by the fact that I should be sleeping but am just not that tired...your welcome::
Posted by Randi at 8:22 PM
Sunday, June 1, 2008
As of yesterday I am officially CPR/First Aid certified. If you are having a medical emergency or are unconscious call me so I can point at someone else and tell them to call 911 and then sit there and look like I'm doing something helpful. Just kidding. I really did learn much just hope to never use it.
The last week has been head counselor training for camp which means early mornings and feeling like bed at about 9. However, this week has been amazing. It's just a few of us and the full time staff and it's actually been really fun. Who knew learning about conflict, risk management and emergency drills could be so entertaining?...at times. We have one more week to go of training then the staff (including tresa and moss) show up and after a week of training for them campers arrive! I've gotta say I'm really excited. God has really shown me this week why he wants me back here. After last summer I wasn't that impressed. I wanted to go to RVR where there seemed to be passion behind what they preached. Without a long long story this week has changed all this. The program I was in last year is gonna change a lot this year and God has made it clear why he wanted me here, in a leadership position and what he wants from it. I'm so exited for this summer and yet completely terrified. It's gonna be a challenge but those usually wind up being the most exciting of experiences. This summer I'm giving it nothing I have and everything God has. I'm pumped.
Posted by Randi at 1:48 PM
Friday, May 23, 2008
below is the video that got me through exams. I just can't help but smile when I watch it (and I watch it frequently). They should really play it on TV more often. Anyway, I showed it to some friends last night and decided it was time to share it with the world (or at least the 3 people who read this) so that they may smile too.
Edit: BUT I cannot get the video up here without it destroying my entire page so you will have to be satisfied with the link. I apologize.
Posted by Randi at 9:03 AM
Wednesday, May 7, 2008
I can't believe it's almost over! My junior year of college is rapidly coming to end. It really doesn't feel like it should be ending just yet. I don't feel like we've been here all that long, but exams are next week and I'm sure not complaining about summertime being right around the corner. This year ending also means that I will soon be embarking on my senior year. I feel like college just started yesterday but in a year it will be over. Ridiculous! Freshmen year really wasn't that long ago, I swear. I must have blinked at some point and missed it.
The strangest thing about this year ending is the people leaving with it. This year's senior class is some of my greatest friends. It's not like I will never see them again , in fact I'm pretty sure I'll still see most of them pretty frequently, but they won't be here. I've never known SU without them. I can't even imagine what my apartment will be like next year or what's it's going to be like not to have the people that I turn to for advice and laughter only a few feet away. What will I do without Sheena's pretty face, people mistaking me for Jess, Matt banging on the door and bringing ridiculousness with him or Katie hitting on me. Granted, I'm excited for next year. I'm sure it will be FULL of laughs, goodtimes, and good friends; new experiences are always exciting. But these people have become my family. It won't be the same without them.
Posted by Randi at 7:47 AM
Monday, April 21, 2008
The Feast of Unleavened Bread has begun! woo-hoo?
Background story: All week I had been looking forward to the Bagel Bakery, silly I know, but I was really craving it and I figured it would be a fun thing to go to church and then get a delicious crab dip bagel for lunch.
Sunday began this "feast" (I've always thought it strange that it's called that. I mean, I understand but I always seem to eat less rather than more since apparently everything is made with some sort of leavening). So I woke up Sunday morning and legitimately screamed "crap" when I realized I had wouldn't be getting my bagel...or any bagel that day or any day in the near future. I mentioned this dilemma to my roommate who said "OOO! Bagel Bakery sounds great!" and I began to think maybe I will go. I don't have to celebrate this year. Then I got to thinking...
Leavening represents sin, that's what the whole feast is about. You rid yourself of all the leavening in your house. Like you are supposed to get rid of all food with it and sweep and vacuum all crumbs... There should be no hint of leaven in the house. You're ridding yourself of sin. Getting it out of your life...COMPLETELY. Now living in an apartment with 7 girls who don't celebrate this makes it a little hard to get rid of all it (although I'm sure no one would mind if i throughly swept) but the concept still remains. I began to notice how easily I was ready to just give up and give in...after only a few hours and how that applies to my life and my sin. Sin is EVERYWHERE. It's all over the place tempting you at every turn. I don't have to give in but I so often do. The reason leavening represents sin is because if even a little bit of it gets into a batch of dough it spreads throughout the whole thing. And I see that in my life with sin so often. Giving into the "littlest" of things can cause such a change in my life and I notice it.
Long thought process short (and yes, I had a long thought process about bread) I make it through 8 days without bread when at the beginning it always seems a little impossible when you look at those ingredients labels so why not make it through life without those sins that I keep stumbling on?
So here's to Matzah! :D
Posted by Randi at 12:39 PM
Wednesday, February 6, 2008
I'm going to Africa.
(Not like tomorrow or even soon. I don't know when. But I'm going!)
Posted by Randi at 9:56 AM