If you could do anything (career-wise), with your life with money not factoring in at all, what would you be?
as hokey as this sounds, the *same* exact thing I’m going to school for in the fall: Music Education with Choral Emphasis. I really want to be a choral conductor and professor eventually…my dream would be to work at the collegiate level. But who’s to say that’s not possible, even with my financial limitations? ;)
…But if money were not an issue, I might just find a million and one excuses to travel the world with it. Hehe.
The thing is, there are a lot of 'interpretations' of 'Gods word' that can get people in trouble. If one is an intellectual person, I would think that many would take 'Gods word' very seriously, because we are living in this magnificent world.
I agree completely, which is why it takes serious and committed study in the history, grammar, culture, and context of the scripture to derive a meaning. And even then, much of the Bible will remain a mystery - would it be the living document of God’s Word if it wasn’t that multifaceted? ;)
I don’t claim to be a Bible scholar or anywhere near it, but0 merely a student and follower of Christ, striving to deepen the breadth and depth of my knowledge and understanding day by day. No theological viewpoint that I hold is without its reason (and if I do not yet have conclusive evidence for a stance, I usually do not hold an opinion)
Well, I never said church isn't a wonderful thing. It's definatly an important part of a christians life. Thats what the verse said, and thats what, the article said. But, Never, did it say necessity. A relationship with Jesus is not dependent on church.
And this is where I disagree with you. The church is described as the body of Christ. The bride.
Salvation is not dependent on a church (however, I wonder how many people would be in a position to accept Christ if it were not for churches and the members of those churches - when and how did you accept Christ?) but a healthy relationship with Jesus Christ can only be maintained within his body.
Tell me what part of the New Testament after the Gospel (the story of Jesus) was written to any one other than the church? (and the little books with names attached to it were still sent to people who were apart of a church.)
How do you function apart from a body? Again, we’re not talking of salvation, we’re talking about the result and *function* of salvation once you *are* saved. Where in the Bible are believers functioning apart from the church?
Nowhere in the Bible does it command us to live out our Christianity alone - we do it in the context of others. Anyone can exist apart from a family…but is that really living?
necessity? Come on mare. Did you have to use that word?
You know I did, Matt :)
Hebrews 10:24-25 says “Let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”
I would post a link to an article that I found really straight-to-the-point and clear about the whole issue of the church thing, but I’m not sure you’d read it…hehe ;) So I’ll just copy and paste the main part:
“The church is Jesus’ idea. He invented it. In Matthew 16:18, he says, ‘I will build my church.’ There are over 125 references to “church” in the New Testament. This concept is something that Jesus created, not just as a suggestion, but an expected thing.
The purpose of the church is to provide believers a place to belong, to offer encouragement and support as people of like mind come together for worship and growth. It is a place where local Christians can team up to shine as a lighthouse to the surrounding community. It is a place to be served, and it is also a place to reach out and serve others—within the church, in the community, and around the world.
Finding a good church is not always easy. Churches believe differently, and these differences can become a matter of contention. Sometimes the doctrine is good but the “spirit” is not. It may be a dictatorial, legalistic church with more concern for controlling than loving.
Find a church that uses the Bible as it’s final authority, and that takes a firm stand on the fundamentals of the faith—salvation by grace through faith in Jesus Christ alone, the inerrancy and reliability as the Bible as the only rule for faith and practice, a sense of responsibility in carrying out the Great Commission (Matthew 28:19-20), the divinity and humanity of Jesus Christ, etc. Find one in which you feel comfortable. But find one and commit to becoming involved.
No church is perfect, because people are not perfect. Accept this, and don’t let this stand in the way of being where God wants you to be. And remember, being part of a church is not only about you and what you can get out of it. It’s also about others, and what you can do for them as you serve others in and through the church.”
You know how much I love discussing these kinds of things with you, Matt - let the discussion begin! :P
can you tell me a little about your church and what's different about it? i'm so discouraged by how superficial too many churches are now and how careless...
I’m so sorry you’ve had a bad church experience. I believe with my heart of hearts in the beauty, strenght, and *necessity* of the church as a vital part of a Christian’s life and walk with God, and I don’t know what I would do without the love and community I have with my own.
I could go on and on about why I think churches are so important etc, etc…but if you’re asking this question, I’m sure that somehow you already know all of that, and you’re looking for one that you can go to.
No church is perfect by any means, because a church isn’t an institution or a building, but a group of people. And what group of people, or what *person* do you know that’s without flaws? It’s really easy to blame the imperfections and mistakes of a few individual people on the entire idea of a church and shun “organized religion” altogether. I guess what I’m trying to say is that I understand your disappointment, but please don’t let it be a permanent characterization of churches altogether. Whether or not my church is the one for you (and if you live nearby I’d more than love to have you visit it), there’s one out there that I’m sure you can really love and get involved with, it just takes some time and some visiting different places…every church is so different from each other.
As for my church, there are several things about it that I really think make it different:
1) The size. We run between 120-near 200 on a normal Sunday and its just really great. We’re at a size where it doesn’t feel awkwardly small, but the sense of community is really strong and people know enough about your life that they *really* care about what you’re going through. However, we’re large enough and have such great members that there really are a lot of different ministries and things going on and so many leaders with such *great* hearts for God. This is the kind of community that I really feel transcend the size of a church whether it be small or big, but where we are right now, it just really clicks. *Really* well
2) Worship - I’m on the team so I suppose I’m a little biased…hehe…but I love the music we do and I love the openness of the congregation. It’s not pressured, but *genuine*, where people worship as freely or conservatively as they see fit. And that’s ok.
3) The delicious and free breakfast bar/cafe courtesy of the women’s ministry
4) Various ministry/service opportunities
5) Practical, applicable, down-to-earth but still intellectually stimulating preaching
6) The *most* different thing I would have to say is the lack of generational barriers. There are so many different age groups at our church and I feel just as close to the 60+ demographic as I do to the people my own age. Everyone is just so open and supportive of the things that you do and who you are and where you’re going…again, perhaps this is because of the size, but I’d venture to say more than that, that it’s about people’s love for Christ and love for each other.
I wouldn’t even say that these are what make my church *different*, because I know a lot of churches about there that have the same aforementioned qualities. But for *me*, the community, accountability, and love is what makes my church the place where I can go worship God and fellowship with other believers better than I *ever* could alone.
What happened to your long amazingly thought out answers?
To be perfectly honest, I started to get a little insecure about them for several reasons:
1) Frequent complaints made me believe most people found it obnoxious and narcissistic *blushes*. Regardless of whether or not that’s who I am (and I sure hope its not), I never want to be perceived as such and its really quite embarrassing to be accused of anything remarkably close to those two accusations.
2. My in-depth and and “thought-out” answers were really quite transparent of me once I went back and read them, and I’m still not quite sure how I feel about sharing that much on a public forum. Whether its the core of what God is teaching me in my life at a particular moment or the deeply personal reasons for why I love the colors green and blue, why would someone be motivated to get to know me if they already *do* just by reading my formspring? It doesn’t leave me at all to be a very interesting person and doesn’t exactly leave any room for small talk ;)
I think I was starting to strip myself of having any sort of mystique or aloofness to who I am, which I believe is important as a girl. I mean, I’ve always valued myself as a genuine and straightforward person…but I’m also straightforward enough to admit to myself that I can tend to take that to unhealthy extremes.
I’m just too trusting, I suppose, and - like I mentioned - I’m still not sure how I feel about that.
I do miss really replying with “all of me” and on some questons I’m still not really going to be able to *help it* at all, but I’m doing my best to answer honestly and still modestly if that makes sense.
A last reason is that sometimes there are some questions that just don’t call for a long answer! haha!
Haha, how can I not be biased! I’ve only been to the East Coast once in my life, but when I did I missed:
The snow capped mountains and sense of knowing exactly where you were in the context of the world, and knowing where North South East and West were merely by the formation of the visible mountain ranges
The clear, dry California air and multicolored sunsets
The constant blue skies and swaying palm trees
The *lack* of humidity
The proximity to the ocean, mountains, desert, and city within 1 hour any direction
The lack of extremities with weather
The free pastures hills and wildflowers
The hikes and waterfalls
and, most of all, just knowing I was *home*.
There are some extreme beauties and wonders to the other parts of the United States, but if I could live anywhere else in the US I would probably choose the MidWest for its thunderstorms and fireflies and just small town friendliness and slow pace life, but I’m not sure how I feel about the East Coast. I guess I haven’t experienced enough of it, but I hope some day I will :)
However, when it all comes down to it, from the Golden Gate to the beaches of the OC, I’m a California girl through and through and nothing will beat the comforts and loveliness of home :) <3
I refer not to because frankly its just not worth the inevitable pain involved (especially to things like school dances…WHO on earth had the brilliant idea of trying to walk in *heels*!?), but in a desperate situation if I needed to slip on 4 in stilettos I’d manage just fine. Here’s how:
1. Heel down first then toe, but as soon as toe is down, shift the weight forward as if you’re walking on your tip-toes. (This is the big thing. trying to keep your weight on your heel will make you fall and looks ridiculous)
2. Don’t bend your knees any more than you normally would
3. Keep good posture - don’t lean forward
4. Walk toe to heel and accept the fact that the higher the heel, the smaller your strides will be.
5. Keep your legs close together
6. When you’re standing or stopping, keep feet close together (one slightly more forward the other and almost touching) and switch the weight from foot to foot so you don’t get too tired
7. When walking, keep toes pointed forward as much as possible.
Don’t ask me how I know this. I’m youngest in a family of four girls, so some things just come to you :P
Hi! I'm glad you are following me :) I really like the content you post.
You'll never know who I am. Does that scare you? haha (It would scare me a little.)
Actually, I’d venture to say I could take a *really* good jab at who you are :) If I’m correct, I’m glad you’re following me too and I love your content as well! I think you’re incredibly interesting and multi-faceted, which really intrigues me :) Too bad you’re so far away…
I love your long answers. Which year of your high school career was your favorite and which one was your least favorite? & why?
This is a *really* impossible question to answer for the following reasons….
Freshman Year Low: I was super immature, didn’t like the change, most of my best friends had moved away, hated how many people there were, wasn’t involved in a whole lot, the campus stunk!
Freshman Year High: I discovered my love for choral music, basically lived my *life* just to go to Freshman Choir 6th period. Was in West Side Story at the High school.
Sophomore Year Low: Let the procrastination begin. Grades suffered from over-packed schedule, massive heartbreak that I won’t burden you with, family problems, bouts of depression, intimidation as a sophomore in Madrigals, bullying, etc…
Sophomore Year High: visited CHINA! Loved singing even more, loved choir despite some setbacks
Junior Year Low: can be summed up in on word: PRESSURE. Editor in Chief of the magazine, President of choir as a junior, crazy workload, hard to keep grades up, frustration in Madrigals, pressure/discordance at home
Junior Year High: SANG IN CARNEGIE HALL.! Grew really close to my Madrigals family. Loved the seniors so much, had a blast in New York, fun year all around with Staci and the gang, made regional and all state Honor Choir which was completely life changing
Senior Year Low: Pulver left, budget cuts continue to encroach upon the level of education offered at YHS, have to take Chemistry, stress of college and money, keeping grades up
Senior Year High: BEING A SENIOR! Regional Honor Choir amazingness, leaving for San Jose for all-state honor choir on Wednesday, being in Student Council and not having that many classes, random fun senior festivities, being 18 and having *way* more freedom than I even thought I’d be able to have, band and choir uniting!, meeting some great new people I never thought I’d actually become friends with, being invovled, Prom and Grad night coming up, BEING DONE WITH HIGH SCHOOL!!
That about sums it up, so…it’s almost impossible to answer as you can see. Immediately I thought I had a good answer for this and then reviewing the years, there’s at least *one* major event both positive and negative in both (and for some a conglomeration of events) that defines the “good” and “bad”.
Who am I to say which year was the best? They all brought me to where I am, which is a senior in High School hoping to go to Cal State Fullerton as a Music Education major, loving God, loving life, and loving where I’m at :)
(and I’m glad you enjoy my long responses - I’ve been trying to cut back but allowed myself to enjoy the length of this one just for you ;) )
It seems fitting that I would study election last of all—the most significant, if not the most controversial point in Calvinistic doctrine. I find it interesting that Calvinism is divided up into five points when the doctrines are quite easily separated into two: the doctrine of the total…
How do you have such a broad and intellectual vocabulary and how can I get one? :D Lol.
Wow! aha, I’ve definitely never considered myself having a “broad and intellectual” vocabulary. But thank you!
I do love words, and when I hear one that I like a make a point to jot it down somewhere. When I know there’s a certain adjective I use often (“huge” for example) I got to a thesaurus and try and learn some fun alternatives and use them (ex: gargantuan, elephantine, prodigious, etc…), and most of the time they stick.
I read a lot of books and make a point of trying to read a book that will challenge my focus and intellect, and I reference a dictionary often.
But still I have moments when there’s something I want to express and I simply do *not* have the words. And other moments when I *do* have the words and noone knows what the heck I’m talking about. haha!
Does your whole family try to become online celebrities?
My female intuition is telling me this is W*****. I really have no good explanation other than that for assuming so and if its not, I apologize.
This is a very interesting assertion. I can’t think of why one would think so considering….
1. My mom hardly knows how to double click
2. My dad is a pastor who is indeed tech-savy but in no way interested in viral popularity
3. My brother is a cinematographer who uses his website to promote his Wedding business but it basically stops there
4. I’m just your average teenage girl who likes social networking
5. Joy promotes her photography via internet (what artist doesn’t these days?)
6. and the only one *close* to constituting as “trying to become an online celebrity” is Promise who loves fashion and blogging…but that’s because she loves it.
So I would venture to say that the biting edge to this question that I’m detecting was a tad unnecessary. I’m not getting defensive or upset, just making a mild observation.
We’re just a regular family that likes regular things, and I’d venture to say that the number one priority of my family members is simply to love people and reach out to them doing what they do best (no matter what medium they do it through).
But fame is definitely not on the top of the list :P
(I’m sorry, I just had to take advantage of the lack of “I”)
Please don’t take offense to anything I’m about to say, for I do take this as the highest compliment, thank you very much.
I find something extremely ironic and humorous about this situation. Let me explain:
I’m dealing with a lot of personal things right now, trying to make myself a better person, etc etc…(you can reference my last answered question for more detail).
Basically, I’ve established mainly to myself (and a few other people) that I’m in no position to date anyone right now, primarily because, for me, dating someone right now would be *completely* about how it would make *me* feel and what *I’d* get out of it and not at *all* about growing closer to God with another person.
I would never want to subject that on someone.
So basically I’m not looking for a relationship right now, at all. I need to focus on where I’m at and where I’m going what who God is molding me to be. In cliche terms, how am I supposed to be looking for “Mr. Right” when I’m nowhere near being “Ms. Right”?
The irony of this situation is that I’ve had to turn down more guys in the past 7 days than I have in the past 2 years (when I *was* looking to date). *sigh* Guess that’s life :P
But, I *am* always looking for friendship :] Doing fun things with friends is more than fine by me. ;)
Hi, beautiful. :) What is something(s) you have recently learned from God?
First off, thank you thank you :)
Secondly, oh boy. This is a novel waiting to happen. How to sort my thoughts, how to sort my thoughts…
I apologize in advance for the inevitable length of this reply, and do know that I am going to sincerely try to be as concise as possible.
In the past…let’s say…*month* of my life I’ve come to more spiritual epiphanies (and catharses) than I’ve had in the past 2 years of my life. I’ve been awakened to this whole new way of living and I really don’t even know where to start describing what God has taught me through it all.
Ok. I’ve thought about it. I can sum it up in one word: motives.
For so much of my life up until this point I’ve understood the Bible and God and I’ve even had a relationship with him to an extent and I made good decisions (for the most part), loved people, did the right things, etc, etc…but there was one thing missing:
Which leads me to another conclusion (which I’ve already admitted to a few close friends): I’m an incredibly selfish and insecure person, so naturally my motives tend to be me-oriented and with the goal of taking the “edge” (so to speak) of my self image issues.
Perhaps I’m being a little hard on myself, because its not like God hasn’t played a central part in my life up until last month – there was just one big piece that’s been missing, and its been this whole “digging deeper” into who I truly am. And who *am* I, if I’m not my motives? The works that I do are pointless if I’m not doing them for the right reasons.
One of my favorite Bible verses is Lamentations 3:23 which simply states: “God’s mercies are new every morning.” It still bewilders me that the God of Creation gives me a fresh start every day of my life – and that he *loves* to do it.
So, I’m really working toward molding my image to the image of Christ one day at a time. I’m working on getting healthy in every aspect of my life: spiritually, emotionally, mentally, relationally, *physically*…the whole shebang.
It’s as if I’ve woken up from this drunken stupor and only now can I see clearly. I’m trying to consume my mind with things that are only of God by spending time in his Word and in meditation and prayer, as well as censoring the media and other things that subliminally lead to the selfish life I was so used to living. I want to be sensitive again, I want to be raw. And slowly I can feel God molding my heart and soul.
Just like Jeremiah 18 says, He is the potter and I am the clay.
I just want you to know that you are the kind of person who can hold people accountable. I appreciate your bold statements and loving attitude toward me over the years. God used you in my life, in big ways.
I hope I know who this is. I love you :) I miss you. And thank you so much. If it is who I think, you know you’ve done the same for me. I don’t think anything more needs to be said. <3
Besides time, which I believe to be everybody’s “#1” no matter how they want to describe it, I would definitely put “words of affirmation” right under it. I’m a very expressive person and I take great joy in telling people how I feel about them and verbalizing how they’ve impacted my life and *why* they’re important to me. Writing letters and notes is one of my favorite things to do for people on their special days (birthdays, graduation, etc…).
I can’t give to much of an explanation for why that is the way that I am, but I can rationalize it:
You never know when it’s your last chance to tell someone how you feel. Carpe Diem! Seize the day! I like to be honest with people because too many people frankly just *don’t* know how much they’re loved and there are so many people in my life that I cherish beyond belief.
So it makes sense that since that’s the way that I *show* love, it’s the main way that I receive it. Some of the kind things that people have said to me on formspring have had more of an impact on me than even *I* thought something like that would. Even if people don’t feel they can say it to me not-anonymously, they’re still saying it, which means they want me to know that someone somewhere out there thinks those things about me.
How do you know when to trust your heart vs. making decisions with your mind?
I’ve successfully put off this question for more than 2 weeks now because I really wanted to put some thought into how I *make* decisions vs how I *should* make decisions. I don’t necessarily abide by everything that I’m about to say.
A simple answer would be to say that one should always trust their mind. Jeremiah 17:9 warns us that “the heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?” I certainly can’t understand my *own* whims and fancies: they change on a daily basis! What a scary life I would lead if I made decisions purely based on how I felt(trust me…I’ve tried. It’s frightening.)
But at the same time, it’s not merely my “logic” that I believe I should base my decisions on 100% of the time, but rather the Word of God. Not that my logic in any way conflicts with the wisdom in the Bible, but society has made so many once black-and-white areas this horrible mushy color of gray.
Pslam 119:105 says “your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.” Everything that I do, every decision that I make goes back to living a life that glorifies God. *That’s* the source that I trust because God is the one entity in life that is the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow (as opposed to my emotions which change about every 15.4 seconds.).
I would like to end it there, but there’s one more thing I really want to make clear, and that is that God made us as emotional beings for a reason. The passion, whether it be love or anger or indignation, is all a reflection of He that we were made “in the image” of: God himself. Psalm 37:4 says “delight yourself in the LORD and he will give you the desires of your heart.” This doesn’t mean that God is some genie in a bottle - quite the opposite! What its getting at here is that if we *delight* ourselves in the Lord (consume our thoughts and hearts and soul and mind with his goodness and nature and Truth), he will give us the desires of our hearts (our longings, our hopes, our dreams) because guess what? They’ll be perfectly in line with Him. I think that notion is incandescently brilliant.
I guess what I’m trying to say with all of this is that I hope to reach a point in my life and spirituality where my heart, soul, and mind are so delicately interconnected that none of them conflict and all point towards the purpose that God has for my life in bringing glory to His name.