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love the day.

October 27, 2010

I love the change in seasons, fall is my favorite.  But then come spring, I may say spring is my favorite.  God’s design for change of seasons is so intricate and I see it as Him being gracious in allowing us to be refreshed, not only in the physical change of seasons but then in seasons of life.

It’s comforting to know we are being changed from one degree of glory to the next, and the Lord may change our circumstances to move us to that next degree of glory, even if we may have to go through suffering of some sort.  Ultimately we will be conformed completely to the image of Christ once we are in glory.  God promises that His children are in that process.

I love my job and the students I get to work with daily and know confidently the Lord has me here at State for His glory, I’m starting to feel some confusion for the future..

But all this to say, I’m thankful to be in this season of my life, even though there may be desires I have but ultimately God knows my heart and is conforming me to Christ in this season right now, regardless of my selfish desires.  God knows us best so therefore He knows ultimately what is the best for us.. He works all things together for our good.  I’m continuing to rest in His sovereign plan for my life, whatever next year or 5 years or week may bring.

“In the chaos, in confusion
I know You’re Sovereign still
In the moment of my weakness
You give me grace to do Your will”

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my story..

September 29, 2010

I’ve been recently reflecting on my past and what the Lord has redeemed me from and I wanted to write it out as I continue to reflect and also share about my life and how I’ve struggled with this issue of searching for satisfaction in many worldly things.  Back in high school I began to search for things that could bring fulfillment.  I would go to parties at first because my friends would go, then I started to find temporary satisfaction in through drinking because I saw that it would cover up my insecurities.  It enabled me to be more outgoing, or so I thought.  I also was pleasing my friends by doing things that I wouldn’t have normally done.  I was always trying to please someone and receive approval from others which is what I found the more I got into the party scene.  This led to promiscuity with boys, going beyond boundaries with them, looking for their approval of me through what I did with them.  This lasted all of my junior and senior year of high school.  I began to forget who I was because I was always thinking of what other people would think.

I came to State my freshman year and the first couple of weeks I continued this lifestyle.  I tried the “college party scene” and this is when I realized how unfulfilling it was.  I would go to parties and meet people and would not remember their names, they wouldn’t remember mine and I remember thinking to myself that these are not genuine relationships which is what I really need right now.  About the second weekend of school, it was a Saturday night, I was sitting in my dorm room trying to decide if I should go to this party or not.  I was waiting for my friends to call.  While I was waiting, I saw my Bible sitting on my desk which I never really picked up to just read, I would read it in Sunday school or church occasionally.  And I know now that at that point, God was beginning to work in my heart.  I opened up and the first verse I read was Romans 13:12-14.  “The night is nearly over, the day is almost here.  So let us put aside the deeds of darkness put on the armor of light.  Let us behave decently, as in the daytime, not in orgies and drunkenness, not in sexually immorality and debauchery, not in dissension and jealousy.  Rather clothe yourselves with the Lord Jesus Christ, and do not think about how to gratify the desires of the sinful nature.”  Once I read this, tears started streaming down my face.  This was so direct to exactly what was going on in my thoughts that going to the party would have been gratifying the desires of my sinful nature.  I knew at that moment that God was speaking directly to me through His Word.  It was as if I could hear Him say, “Paige, I have a greater purpose for you than the life you’re living, I have given you value, come and I will give you rest.”  This was the most amazing truth I had ever heard in my life and that night is the best night I have ever experienced.  It was such a freeing moment and I felt complete because I finally understood that the only satisfaction is found in Christ.  I had searched for so many things for satisfaction and felt so empty.  God has granted us eternal life through Christ’s sacrifice for our sins.  Understanding His deep and unconditional love has satisfied and continues to satisfy the depths of my heart.

here we go..

August 30, 2010

Tomorrow is the first official day I get to start working on campus.  It has been so humbling to see the Lord provide.  He remains faithful.

My prayer is to be a clean vessel for His glory.  I’ve been reflecting on this verse from 2 Timothy,

“20In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for noble purposes and some for ignoble. 21If a man cleanses himself from the latter, he will be an instrument for noble purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work.”

We cannot be useful or prepared to do good works if we are not cleansed.  Being clean, I think can mean not being focused on ourselves.  I cannot do things on my own or say the right words but what I can do is rely completely on the Lord allowing the Spirit to flow right through me.  He is the One who intercedes and brings glory to Himself.

I am inadequate on my own, I cannot change people’s hearts but what I can do is speak and live the Gospel, the beautiful display of sacrificial Love, what all of our hearts long for.  This is my prayer, obedience to live out the gospel.. to You be the glory.

“consume me like a fire..”

August 15, 2010

i came home for the weekend and i’m thinking i’m going to stay for a few more days.. to try and get support finished up, praying hard for that.  moved back to raleigh and it’s quite nice to be back, i must say.. i had missed it, mostly the people there.  it was kind of strange being in raleigh but not for school.  i’m liking the change but at the same time, it’s going to take some time to adjust.

i think once i start working on campus with students, i will see the purpose the Lord has provided me to be in raleigh for the next year, at least.  right now, i’ve moved and still not 100% with support so i feel slightly out of place not being able to do stuff with crusade yet.  but i know once school kicks in, things are going to be at full speed.

it has been encouraging seeing some of the upperclassmen so pumped to meet the freshmen and take the opportunities to pour into them.. i’m looking forward to this year and seeing God’s heart for the students in raleigh.

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i’ve started reading ezekial, been thinking about when the Lord called him and told him to go and proclaim the Lord’s words.  He warned ezekial that the people of Israel would have stubborn hearts and not understand or listen, but he must tell them anyway.

i feel like the Lord has been using this passage to not only prepare me for this next year but to strengthen my heart to proclaim the Lord’s words, not because i know someone may not listen or not understand, but that the Lord has called us to this. He has told us to make disciples of all nations, telling them of what the Lord has done in our lives and what He offers to all people, grace.

“Be not afraid of their words, nor be dismayed at their looks, for they are a rebellious house.  and you shall speak my words to them, whether they hear or refuse to hear.”-ezekial 2:6-7

and the page is about to turn…

August 3, 2010

moving to raleigh in 2 days.. it’s kind of crazy to think this summer is already over.  it’s been one roller coaster of a summer, mostly emotionally.  the next chapter of my life is about to begin, done with college.. now stepping out to the “real” world…

i’m really excited to see what God has in store this year.  He’s been teaching me a lot just in the past 24 hours.. mistakes i’ve made, friendships i’ve somehow allowed to slip through the cracks, but He has brought these friendships back together and realizing how much of an impact we can have on someone’s life and not even realize it.

i want to be intentional about pursuing friendships relentlessly like Christ pursues us.  it can be easy for me sometimes to focus so heavily on the people i see continually and lose touch with those i hardly see.  God’s timing in teaching me through my mistakes and Him giving me the desire to love people more, and focus on me less, is preparing me for this year.  I’m excited for what the Lord has called me to, to continue pursuing the relationships i have with people from the past, ones in the present, ones who i will meet in the future, and for my eyes to be opened to the ways He’s changing the hearts of students on campus..

The most important one [commandment] is this: “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. 31 The second is this: Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these”- Mark 12:29-30

take captive every thought

July 10, 2010

I’m not so great at keeping up with blogs.. this is the best I’ve done with one so far.  It’s kind of nice to get thoughts out, even if it’s just for me to put them into words whether anyone reads them or not.

I’ve been wrestling with the verse in 2 Corinthians 10:5 “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.”  Trying to understand which thoughts I have let ‘overtake’ me.. or control me.  It comes down to the question, is this thought competing with God’s glorious completion of His work?  Am I surrendering my thoughts to His will, or are my thoughts what I want for me?

Captivating thoughts are thoughts that control us, that we find ourselves meditating on too often.  I came to the conclusion this morning that I don’t think I can control my thoughts at all, it must be by the power of the Holy Spirit dwelling in me to control them, take them captive to the obedient to Christ.  In my flesh, my thoughts tend to thrive off instant gratification, certain thoughts or ideas of a circumstance may provoke my feelings in that moment towards happiness or comfort.

I’ll try to explain this.. if I try to stop thinking of something that may happen in the future (where I will be in a year, 5 years; job related, or marriage?), I for some reason think about it more.  In my own flesh, I am not able to stop having these captivating thoughts on my own, something of greater power apart from my flesh, the Holy Spirit, must take captive my thoughts and turn them into obedience to Him, His will.

I’ve been going through this 5 day study on this concept of having a steadfast mind (Isaiah26:3).  The first part of the study basically states that the first step to freedom from our captivating thoughts is we must agree with God and confess our ‘strongholds’ or ‘high places’ that we have created in our minds that have overtaken our thoughts more than God Himself.

quote from the study, “the enemy will capitalize on normal emotions of love or loss to swell them out of healthy proportion.  they can consume our very lives if we are not aware of his schemes.”

This all may seem vague or hard to understand and follow.. but this is what I have been trying to understand, and what God is teaching me right now.. more to come later..

fear to faith to courageous action

July 1, 2010

Went to Raleigh a couple days ago to greet the people coming back from East Asia and Argentina summer projects.  Also got to hang out with some friends and girls in my bible study.  It was so great to see everyone and gain motivation as well as focus as to why I’m actually raising support.  It has been easy to get lost the last few weeks in the grunt of support raising.  I found myself allowing satan to discourage me and take away joy.  I don’t consider myself a very emotional person but the last couple weeks have been very emotionally draining.

I have been praying for joy and peace in the midst of all of this and God is showing me to just seek Him.  That is all He wants from us, no matter our circumstances, seek Christ, with all our hearts, and there we will find Him.

Earlier today I heard someone talk about our significance.  It is not in the amount of support that comes in, it is not in pleasing people, it is in Christ alone.  Regardless of where this summer takes me, my name is written in heaven and that is exactly where my significance lies.

I’m feeling more encouraged, continuing to abide in Him, gaining faith through the Spirit.  What an amazingly difficult journey this has been.