Friday, May 30, 2008

We're Back!

Now that were settled back into normal life, I thought I would share about our trip to Washington. It was awesome!! Washington is so beautiful and green, which I guess is why they call it the evergreen state(well, it just says that on the license plate). It makes me wonder why I live in Texas. FAMILY (and friends)- that is the only reason I am staying here people. But anyways, we had so much fun exploring the state and getting to see the fun city and beautiful nature! We feel so thankful that we had the chance to take a vacation since we might not be able to do that later once I start school and the finances will be a bit tight. Here are some of the things we did on our trip: hiked(we saw a river otter!), took a lot of pictures, ate a lot, lounged, people watched, watched tv, walked in seattle A LOT, went to a folk festival, visited with friends (Angie and Jordan) and rode the city bus! It was a good balance of being active and relaxing, which I enjoyed. I know Jason said he wanted to post about it so, so I'll leave it up to him to explain more details if he wants...
Here are some pictures from our adventure!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Glory Bound

Thats right...Jas and I are glory bound. We are headed to the beautiful Northwest on Wednesday morn at the butt crack of dawn. Jas and I have been planning our trip to Seattle since February or so. We wanted to go somewhere we have never been before and Seattle has the best of both worlds...beautiful mountains and nature and also a fun urban city to explore. Jason is in charge of our time in Olympic National Park and I am in charge of our time in the city. I am pumped! I am sure we will post lots of pictures from the trip when we get back, so be on the look out.

This trip is perfectly timed because this month has officially been the busiest ever at work. I don't know what it is, but its been stressful and so I am definitely ready for a vacation....even though it makes it a bit harder to leave when your leaving beahind a whole bunch of work. But I know that work probably won't slow down so there won't really be a prime time to stop and take a vacation. So off we will go!

Also, in other news...I never posted on this, but I officially got accepted in the UTA master's program to get my master's in social work. I am exicted big time. It's weird thinking I'll be going back to school now that I've finally adjusted to the full time work schedule, but none the less I am excited.

Alright... now I have to go de-identify a 500-ish page case file.! Gotta love paperwork.

Monday, May 12, 2008

Entitlement= Enslavement

I wanted to share a bit about what God has been teaching me as of late. It's not something that I have mastered (if I can even use that word) and will never fully master/understand until God's work is complete in me when He returns. A few weeks ago at church Matt (our pastor) spoke on one of our core values at church: footwashing (aka- service, servanthood, humility, etc). That sermon really hit home to me and I felt so stirred and challenged by God.

I feel like God is showing me how much life really isn't about me. I know, I know, you hear that all the time if you go to a Christian church, but it truly is hard to understand that this life that we are living on earth isn't about us, when everything that surrounds us tells us it is. The truth is we were created to glorify God and to live a life that reflects Christ- service, humility, joy, otherness... The scripture below really sums up this truth I am trying to convey.

"He is the image of the invisble God, the first born of all creation. For by him all things were created, in heaven and in earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authrorities--all things were created through him and for him. And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together. And he is the head of the body, the church. He is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in everything he might be preeminent. For in him all the fullness of God was pleased to dwell, and through him to reconcile to himself all things whether on earth or in heaven, making peace by the blood of his cross." Colossians 1: 13-20

Our purpose as God's creation is to glorify and to elevate God's name. It's not about me, what I want, my schedule, my time, my money and so on. Everything I own is His...including my life, which is not my own.

At one point during this sermon, Matt said, "The more you say mine, the more you are a slave" and I was like, "Ouch.." This statement to me is so true...which is why I chose the title for this post. I have to understand that everything that I believe to be "mine" is a gift from God. When I begin to claim these gifts as my own...and when I begin to believe that I am entitled to them I am believing lies. Not only that, but when life doesn't go my way and when the things that I believe are my own are taken am I going to respond? That is the real test...
I just feel so convicted of claiming things to be my own. It gets tiring. Does that even make sense? It's so liberating to just realize that everything this is His. oooooooo weeeee.

God is calling me to live a life with open hands, not tight fists that only desire to do things for myself. I need grace and strength, but I know God desires for me to be this way and if I ask him for the ability to live life as a gift and with open hands to serve, then he will give this to me (1 John 5: 14-15). That's good thing because you know I am selfish and just want to do what I want.

If you have made it this far...thanks for reading! I just wanted to share a bit of what's going on with me, but I'm kind of all over the place with my thoughts. No, it's time for a bit of chicken spaghetti if you know what I'm saying. Bye!

Monday, May 5, 2008

Feliz Cinco de Mayo!

In order to celeberate Cinco de Mayo, I thought I would post some photos to give you a little glimpse into me and Jason's life newly married life here in the big D. We have been married for nine months (it will be nine months on the 18th to be exact)! yea...if your looking for someone to provide some pre-marital counseling, go ahead and give us a call.

Alright...on with the pics.

Honeymoon in Cabo!

Don't be fooled by Blake's #1 he is holding up...I was the actual winner of the annual Sudan cookie decorating contest!

Our first Christmas...we decorated our tree with popcorn strings we made since we lacked ornaments!

Lazy sunday...

Hutch and Pirtle's wedding!

And there you you are up to date on the last 9 months of our life. Not really though. Thanks for reading!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Letter of Gold

Apparently, if you have the last name of Sudan listed on facebook, other facebook members will befriend you and send you messages similar to the one below. Since I have changed my last name on facebook, many African people (from the Sudan mainly) have sent me messages. When I respond I have to inform them that I am not from the Sudan, but that it is my last name. This message below is by far the best of all of the messages I have received. It turns out that I could be his golden baby. Lucky me! I had to give him the news that I am currently married, so there is no way I could be his golden baby...and then I kindly asked him not to message me again.

Please enjoy this "letter of gold"...

"Dear sister,

I am very happy to write u this sort information concerning me, My name is Mohammed, I am 25 years old Gambian by nationality. I have three brothers with one sister. I am presently in Sudan where by I am doing my university level. I have seen your profile with great since of humor which make me feel happy and joy, I really found that the golden baby whom I have been searching for her could be you, and therefore I took this great opportunity to write this latter of gold to you which came from a deep heart. Your friendship is highly appreciated. I am looking forward to hearing from you as soon as possible.

Yours ever Mohammed"