This used to be my playground…

Day one in Ninevah…errr, I mean Cedarville.

I want to express my deepest thanks for ALL of the prayers/texts/calls/etc.  This transition is going to be one of a lot of emotions and heart change on my part, all of which I’m begging God for, and I’m so thankful you’re begging with me.

I got a message from one of my best friends Zach today who thought that starting a blog might be a good way to track with me in this new chapter.  I agree.  Bob always says “journaling is good for the soul”… So let’s give it a shot, eh?

The Lord has definitely answered prayer…Rachel found my roomates and house randomly online on one of her lunch breaks, and it all worked out.  I am typing this from the couch of our lovely little 4 bedroom house in the ghetto of Xenia.  My roomates are just as random as the way we found them, and I’m sure just as God-ordained.  Lauren & Maddie I have deemed “The Giggle Twins” and Janie is as new to the house as I am.  These three girls are as passionate about their Jesus and their church- Ahop (A House of Prayer) as I’ve seen in a long while.  Maddie has lost her voice (but not her giggle) due to the fact that she and her friends from church drove all the way to DC for one day for a prayer conference, and she sounds all squeaky now because she spent 12 hours crying out to our Lord.  These girls might be 19, 21 and 22…but I think I’m going to be learning quite a bit.  Lauren is an admitted ex-alcoholic who’s life echoes a drastic change from dark to light, and Janie hasn’t been around much, but I do know she has 8 brothers and sisters, so I am BOUND to learn something from her also.  My room is all set and perfect (thanks to my awesome mom and brothers and my bffffff Andrea who chose to help me last week despite my many ugly tantrums.)  I feel very at peace about living here.  Thanks God.

School is weird.

God was so good to me today, I was so afraid of sitting alone in my first chapel, and whaddya know…my dear friend Ryan, whom I haven’t seen in over a year, was here in the Ville and let me know he wanted to hang out…I picked him up before 10 and we made it just in time for me to scan my card along with the throngs of kids, ummm…I mean “fellow students.”

As we sat upstairs in the balcony, I was overWHELMINGLY annoyed with the chit-chat and audible conversations swirling around me from a group of obnoxious kids.  I have so quickly forgotten that a couple years ago, those whispering dervishes with the attention span of a gnat was, wellllllll….ME!

After 45 minutes and my blood sufficiently boiling, I jerked my head around and said firmly “Girls. Please.”  They instantly grew silent.  After chapel, one of the girls caught my attention and simply said “I wanted to apologize, we were very distracting and we shouldn’t have been talking. I’m sorry.”

Now, I don’t know if this girl apologized because I am old enough to be a faculty member or if it is because that sweet little peach just had a heart of gold, but either way- my slice of humble pie was choking me bite by bite.

I keep assuming that I am here to change others and that God is going to change me.  But maybe I am just going to be changed.  Period.

Later this evening, as I walked from the student center to the DMC, it hit me.

This isn’t “my” school anymore.  Sure, I’m enrolled, I’ll be taking pop quizzes soon enough and my parents are spending a pretty penny to give me this opportunity, but it isn’t the same.  The usual flutter and fluster of a dozen or so “Hi’s and How-Are-Ya’s” just walking from one building to another are now replaced with value-questioning silence.  There are no high-fives or flashing a wink to my crush of the week across the parking lot.

I’m not here because of friends or relationships or popularity or involvement…I’m here to close a chapter of my life and breathe a sigh of relief.

I’m here because they wouldn’t accept my boarding pass to Tarshish. 
(aka Chicago)

I’m here because my beloveds prayed until my heart turned and have continued to pray.

I’m here to love Him in a way I haven’t before…through obedience.

Tonight Dr. Brown ended his message on Nehemiah with this quote “Almost every significant thing that has happened in my life was when I was somewhere I didn’t want to be.”

I hope so.

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3 Responses

  1. i miss you. if i have any photo shoots there, can i come visit? i want to meet your roommates! i promise not to curse 😉

  2. Ninevah and Jonah were BOTH changed and both were grateful for it.

    You’re special, Jonah, and I love you. I’ll come see you soon.

  3. Don’t be like Jonah. Jonah ultimately failed. Be like the Ninevites – God’s redemption is the point.

    I need to chill out about biblical accuracy, but then again, I can’t.

    Thanks for the blog!

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