Saturday, August 20, 2011

The Big, Yellow Schoolbus

I guess it is inevitable school begins once more on Monday. I will be starting my 2nd year as a graduate student at Oklahoma State. I kind of feel like this in my senior year all over again. At this point 2 years ago, I definitely thought this was the end of my formal education. Little did I know God had plans for me to stay for another two years. However, this is it for me.

Since both of my parents were in education, I grew up in the school. When I was younger my favorite part of the year was when school supplies came in, and we got to distribute the materials to the teachers. No lie. There was a couple of us who had parents who were teachers and so we would spend the whole day playing and doing whatever the teachers needed. Man, those were the days.

Although both of my brothers played sports all their lives, it wasn't until about my 5th grade year that I started to attend regular high school baseball and basketball games. Since Oilton was a small school, we had fall baseball, basketball, and then spring baseball. In the summer, sometimes my older brother played summer leagues too. Needless to say, I watched a lot of sports in my days-we always went to the games, which is something I am very proud and honored that my parents chose to support us in everything we did. When I got in high school, I was a cheerleader and so once again, we traveled to all of the basketball games. I made as many baseball games as I could amongst anything else I was doing, but my brother had already graduated.

During college, I still made an effort to attend all my little brothers activities as well, but it got a little harder. And then came my junior year in college when Tim transferred to Cushing, but dad still traveled to baseball and basketball games with Oilton since he was the Principal/Athletic Director. I will forever savor those moments we traveled to games together. We have been to a lot of places. This may seem nerdy, but I love to see school buses on the road. I love to see where they are from and what direction they are headed. It literally brings a smile to my face every time. It reminds me of those times traveling to baseball, basketball, and football games (when Tim transferred schools).
Last year, I wasn't able to go to as many high school games. My dad is no longer at Oilton and so he doesn't have those responsibilities, but we still like to get back to Oilton and watch as much as possible.

With this being my last year around this area, that I know, I am going to try and get to as many football, baseball, basketball games as much as I can. I don't like high school sports because it reminds me of the "Glory Days." I like high school sports because of the memories with my family, especially my dad.

Support local sports this upcoming year. Get involved, cheer loud, and make memories.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011


"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; the old has gone,
the new has come! 2 Corinthians 5:17

Throughout my life, the 9 o'clock hour has made a significant impact on me and I'm sure others. In 2001, terrorists attacked American soil between ~8:45 a.m.-10 a.m. with different attacks. Several years later my older brother joined the U.S. Army as an Army Reserve. Little did I know that in 2009, he would serve a tour in Iraq. That year, I feel like I was more aware of the clock than ever before. I distinctly remember every time looking at the clock and seeing, "9:11," whether it was in the morning or evening. Obviously, I'm sure I looked at the clock other times, but I did see "9:11" many times. I truly believe this was a way God used to remind me to pray for him and the rest of the men and women serving.

Another significant time happened when I was in the 1st grade. I can not believe this much time has passed since 1995, but Oklahomans will never forget April 19, 1995. Timothy McVeigh bombed the Murrah Federal Building at 9:02 a.m., and by 9:03 a.m., 168 lives were taken from Earth and others faced emotional and physical pain. I know I was young and lived about an hour away, but I remember that day very clear, and I remember hearing the bomb.

BUT, this past summer, campers attending Falls Creek were able to establish a new norm for the 9 o'clock hour-freedom! Every morning, at 9:03, they would ring the bell for every person who accepted Christ as their Savior the night before. I can not put into words what this time meant to me. 1) I was so excited to have new brothers and sisters in Christ! 2) Although the things of the past did happen in the 9 o'clock hour, I was able to claim something other than hurt for that time. It was a time of celebration! 3) For many people these tragedies have ended in death, but to these people who accepted Christ - they now have life!

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Give it up

"Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest."
Matthew 11:28

Throughout the past church year, I have had the opportunity to work in the nursery. When I started last September, we had two babies. We have grown! We now have a steady five who come pretty much every week, and then every so often have another one as a visitor. It has been a blessing to be able to watch these kids grow up right before our eyes and see how this group has grown so much because of new babies being born or by families that have started attending our church.

Since we had two for a long period of time, the other lady and I was kind of "in charge" of one each. We didn't mean for it to be that way, but that is the way it worked out. The one I mainly had, was well, not always happy when he came into the nursery. He just didn't want to be away from his mom. But, after awhile he started to play and is now even walking!

Recently, this little boy has started fussing toward the end of Sunday School time again. Since I've been around him quite a bit, I kind of know what to do, but he likes to watch me for the longest time before finally just falling asleep. The other Sunday as I was rocking him to sleep, it made me think of myself (ourselves) and our relationship with Christ at times. Sometimes we go through struggles or dark times and don't really know where to turn, or sometimes we do turn to God, but don't necessarily let Him have the reins in the situation. He is always there, and just like He says in the verse, "Come to me...and I will give you rest." As I held this sweet little boy in my arms, I remember saying, "Give it up, you're OK, I have you."

In some situations of my life I have felt God's arms just wrapped around me for protection and to show me that He was there. Other times I have wanted to be like this boy and not want to close my eyes. Maybe it is out of fear because I like to be in control, and when you truly let God lead your life, it is pretty incredible and not necessarily comfortable. But, we serve a God who loves us so much that He wants to provide rest and comfort and peace to us. He wants to be our Father. It is such a comfort knowing that when we are completely at the end of our rope, God wraps us in His arms and tell us to "Give it up, you're OK, I have you."