November 29, 2008

Here are a couple of thankgivings, joys, celebrations and updates: 

  • itunes: was able to find some old school songs I grew up in the faith with: Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir, CLC Youth Choir, Bee Gees, Chicago, Boys II Men, a few Samoan classics, a few movie soundtracks etc. 
  • 50th Anniversary for my home church
  • Disneyland with Pete, Phil, Thomas, Zamroz, Stacy, Tommy and a few others
  • Stacy & Ryan’s (Zamroz) engagement…and going with him to get the ring – that was an honor (thanks man)!
  • dinner with Holly
  • keeping in touch with Durso
  • talk with Dr. Street
  • talk with Dr. Behle
  • call from Scott Vinson
  • lunch with Joe
  • lunch with Brent Eldridge (and his message in chapel)
  • seeing and catching up with Matt Berry
  • Bible Study
  • talk with Summer
  • one-on-one with Caleb and his sister Jillian for his birthday
  • Dave Hulet confronting me
  • hearing of Brad’s recovery and return to the WT! 
  • Dorm staff
  • Halloween haunted house with Thomas, Caleb, Phil and Jennene hosting us
  • catching up with Zane
  • the ability to walk, breathe, sleep, run, eat, sing, play an instrument, listen, read, talk etc. 
  • seeing and talking with Kyle & Kath
  • spending time with Seth Cotter and chatting with him more
  • the journal of biblical counseling articles
  • President-elect Obama
  • my iphone (I love this little gadget!!!)
  • Hymn writers
  • recording with Chapel Band in January
  • the gospel in song; music
  • thanksgiving with my family
  • being the RD of Hotchkiss
  • hip-hop/R&B music – you either hate or you love it…i love it!
  • my glasses
  • Chuncky Strawberry w/extra granola @ Jamba Juice (so good)
  • rest and quiet
  • meeting David Talcot (Dan & Katie’s son)
  • meeting Jane Flower (Tyler & Steph’s daughter)

K, that’s it for now…love you bye!



November 27, 2008

The dorm is practically empty, again.  It seems colder because of that, and while the rain has been a nice addition to these California deserts, I still would prefer the heat.  For now, its fine. 

Someone asked the other night if I could tell when my heart is growing calloused.  Then I replied with a rather quick, “Yeah.”  Then I thought about how calloused I actually am and what I’m calloused about.  A lot of it is due to overlooking the damage that my heart experiences when I don’t water it with the Word.  I realized then, that my efforts run off of habit and familiarity, namely routine.  That freaked me out.  My next tendency was to try and figure out a way to “fix” the problem.  This was all happening in the midst of hanging out with a group of people. 

Later on we prayed together, not as a result of this (we had already planned to pray together).  But we prayed together.  Before we did that we went around and talked about what we wanted prayer for.  This is when it started to pour (literally outside, and spiritually inside). 

Every prayer request was about how they each wanted to grow; in endurance, in discipline, in compassion, in humility, in purity, in relationships etc.  The list went on.  It was beautiful, convicting and some of it was aggrovating my spirit (in a good way).  The washing of my callouseness began with such evidenced surrender.  Now, I know I’ve mentioned this serveral times before, but honestly it was a little annoying this time around.   I think it was because these are things that I am constantly failing at.  Then we prayed.  We prayed God’s character, God’s promises and hoped for and asked for change. 

Someone gave this analogy to me tonight when talking about his own desire to change.  He said, “Ona, when someone or something crashes with a semi at 80mph, something different happens.  Its inevitable, not just probable.  That’s not happening with me.  At least I don’t always feel it or see it.”  As elementary as that was, it was very powerful for me. 

Some times change is in an instant, like the semi encounter.  I want that.  Not all the time but I at least would like to think I welcome that (hopefully at anytime).  Other times, changes happen as a result of rain – sometimes refreshingly savoring and sometimes with rapid damage.  I hope to welcome that at any time as well, with thanksgiving.   

Here’s what I do know, yet often forget: 

“The law of the LORD is perfect, restoring the soul;
         The testimony of the LORD is sure, making wise the simple. 
    The precepts of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart;
         The commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes. 
    The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever;
         The judgments of the LORD are true; they are righteous altogether. 
    They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold;
         Sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb. 
    Moreover, by them Your servant is warned;
         In keeping them there is great reward.” -Psalm 19:7-11 

I had forgotten how long its been since we’ve had rain (ok, so since before a few weeks ago).  I hear its suppose to rain again tomorrow.  Sometimes I also forget about how long its been since I read the Word and have been refreshed by it. 

When it rained today I thought about how green it can get here (well, at least more green than it is now) and then I realized how brown and dry it was/is now. 

Rain is here and so, I’ll enjoy it as a refreshing reminder.


November 25, 2008

This last weekend was my home church’s 50th anniversary celebration!  There was a lot of dancing, singing, eating and celebrating.  It was good to be there.  I saw people from back in the day and I was so filled with joy to see them and to catch up with some of them.  It made me miss them, my family, my church and the Samoan people, culture etc. 

Both Saturday and Sunday were good days to be back there celebrating 50 years of family life.  I was thankful to all the families that had endured throug those times.  It was good to remember the roots of my faith and my heritage. 

Anyway, I’m thankful for being where I was raised and who the Lord surrounded me with.  It was great to look back and respond with such thankfulness and celebration with so many generations; hopefully and prayerfully into the gnerations to come! 

“Great is the LORD, and highly to be praised,
         And His greatness is unsearchable. 
    One generation shall praise Your works to another,
         And shall declare Your mighty acts.” -Psalm 145:3-4


November 5, 2008

We would worry a whole lot less of what people are thinking about us when we realize how little they actually do. 


November 1, 2008

Tonight Pete Bargas, Andrew Callaway and I hung out.  We grabbed some dinner at Wolf Creek (I highly recommend it), grabbed some Starbucks then hung out at Pete’s for a moment.  It was so refreshing.  These guys are so fun to be with and I can’t tell you how blessed I was/am to have been a part of their lives.  Andrew and I see each other about once a year, even though we live just down the street from each other.  That’s okay.  He was my ARA when I was an RA and we kept in touch through out the years, especially when he moved back to Long Beach and I was back in Carson.  Drew’s one of those that I can not hang out with for a very long time and we can just jump back into things.  Pete see each other 5 days a week.  And I still don’t get tired of him.  It was definitely a duo blessing to talk through life and learn from them, from those moments.  They’re cool!

Then I walked into Hotchkiss lounge about 10:30pm and Ryan Zamroz was on lounge duty.  Ryan’s a star basketball player as well as the captain of the basketball team here at Master’s.  He’s also an ARA on one of the wings here in Hotchkiss.  Ryan is definitely an encouragment and a young man who’s meekness is a clear representation of Christ.  He’s cool, not because he’s a star athlete or because he’s GQ, but because he’s teachable and does well with so much of what he’s been given.   Ryan’s cool!

Wednesday Seth Cotter visited me for the evening and we spent the next morning catching up and just talking, and talking and talking.  It was refreshing to see him and be with him.  i’ve missed my friend Seth.  Seth is a former RA of mine and now a good friend.  Its nice to keep in touch and meet up and be able to reunite.  This got me excited about heaven.  That’s really cool!

Earlier today, I took my half day and drove up the 126 to where it kind of drops into the 101.  Parked in a parking lot, got out and started to walk towards the shore.  I walked along the shore for about and hour and then walked back another hour.  I read Psalm 96, 51 and Colossians 3.  Prayed a lot of thanksgivings to the Lord – there were so many things, people and situations (both good and bad) that I have to be thankful for.  I don’t remember when I stopped because there was so much.  The sky was drenched with textures of clouds.  The sun was glissening on the water.  There were seaguls (I think that’s what they were) that dove into the water, I think to get food – I was struck that God was provided even for the birds of the air, right before my very eyes.  I was happy to see that.  I heard the water crashing on to the shore.  I saw a lot of sand and lots of rock but more sand than rock.  The beach and God’s Word is a cool combo!

Sometime this afternoon, probably around 1:30pm, I talked with Mom for a little bit.  She had 3 missed calls on her cell phone from me, so she called twicee earlier in the day.  But those missed calls from me were from last week =).  She’s so adorable!  I love my mom!!!  She sounded happy…and she was at work.  My mom is so cool!   

This morning Chapel Band lead worship for Grace Brethren High School.  High schooler’s think they’re cool =)  some of them are, I was 🙂

It’s 2:30am and now I’m listening to Phil Wickham.  I kinda just wanna wait all night for the Lord or stay up with Him.  Either reason is keeping me up.  And for the few moments mentioned, I know God will have some sort of those cool moments waiting for me.  That would be cool!