Ok ok so I have been getting a lot of flack (rightly so) for not updating...I SWEAR to you all I will not neglect the blog any longer! ha Truth is I was surprised how many people actually do READ blogs...So here I go
Matt and I are doing great! I feel as if we have taken a breath of fresh air. Not sure what attributed to that feeling, maybe a New Year turning...but I love it! I feel very optimistic, and like God has given me a vision for our future. A new season and a new time! I can't wait!
PLEASE be praying! We are hoping to move in March (would love a cute duplex)...I can't tell you how much I want this to happen! All of our stuff is in storage...and I am finally starting to realize, oh yeah I have a whole kitchen packed away somewhere, and photos, and cute candles, and a bunch of meaningless stuff that feels like home! While we have lived without it for a year now, I can't wait to make a place our own again! We have been blessed where we are, and I can't say thank you enough for such gracious hearts...but it's time for a change!
Also add to the Matt and Ashley prayer list (because I'm sure you have one racked up by now): Matt has applied for a promotion at work...his District Manager told his Store Manager (don't you feel back in middle school now) that she loved his personality and that she was looking forward to getting to know him better...that is REALLY good news and we will know by February if he has been accepted into the store manager training program!
School starts next week (Blah...) I definitely have senioritis...ALMOST DONE! I am taking a full load (won't tell you exactly how full). My classes are really good ones this semester...I no longer have to take random electives (like jewelry making or calculus). All classes from here on out are specifically for my major which I love. I am also going to be taking classes through the Wesleyan Church to become a licensed minister! Got my little packet and recommendation letters on the to do list!
Leading the college group is UH-MAZ-ING! We had group last night and the room was overflowing! I am going to have risers built to put along the back wall to accommodate more people! AH! I have been seeking God asking Him what he wants ROOTS Young Adult Ministries to DO! What is our purpose? How can we support our church in this growing time? What do you want to challenge us with? Well, He answered! The other week or so I was cleaning out one of our rooms in the church...(Side note: I moved a HUGE book shelf all by myself from one room to the other!...just wanted to brag!)...anyway I was sorting through a trillion different books and a few random items in the room. I came across this banner from like 40 years ago that said "Playground donated in honor of Irene Peace's mother." Irene Peace is one of the matriarch's of our church...you know the dedicated sold out people that support the church no matter what...no matter what style of music or leadership comes in...She just recently had a stroke, but is doing very well now with speech therapy...and she COMES TO CHURCH every Sunday...people like this are my inspiration! To say all that, my heart broke a little when I read that banner...I looked out the window at our playground...with it's broken swing and rusted equipment...no children ever play on it (mostly because it is unsafe) and it sits at the front of our church for all the world to see...Over the next few days the playground was really on my heart...just the sadness of the whole thing...what it symbolized...a church that has been through hell and back...a battered, tired, worn down place. Since we have been there in June, there is a new spirit there! There is a spirit of adventure, of life, of love, of community that has never been there before! It is a miracle! The playground does not fit into that...God told me he wants our college group to fund raise and donate a new playground. I cried thinking of the incredible symbolism that it held...so much more than a playground...but something to show the LIFE that is infused into our bones at Crossroads! To draw families and children (which we have none of yet...just college age and over 45 for the most part) SO I announced all that nervously last night and when I finished I heard a hearty AMEN from a girl in the corner! Everyone was super excited! We are going to have a planning meeting soon, so please pray if you think of it! I can't wait to see how God uses us to bring about His plan! I can't believe this is my life! I am so blessed and honored...I am constantly reminded that God uses the weak to lead the strong...humbling to be a leader of incredible people...it is for sure that it is ALL God and no me...just a willingness to be used...that's all.
There is so much more to say which I will save for my next blog...or six blogs! But I just wanted to end on a funny holiday memory! My sisters came to town for Christmas, and my dad and I went to the airport to pick them up...you will not believe your eyes when you see the videos below! Let's just say, I hope I am still as much a child as my father is at 45!