Friday, February 27, 2009

My week.

This week has been an interesting one. It's been the laziest, most productive week. Spiritually dead and spiritually alive. Moving no where, going backward, dancing forward. Freezing cold and quite warm. Doubts and assurances. A defining moment was when I woke up Wednesday and said to myself "It's already Wednesday." When the previous night I had gone to bed and thought to myself, "It's only Tuesday." Definitely a week of oxymoron's.

It was beautiful, painful, insightful. A growing week. I've been learning I'm not so independent. Not so certain about where I'm going. Not so certain about God's calling on my life. Not so certain about how horrible things are. Not so certain about how wonderful things are.

Life is meant to be reflected upon, if we rush through it we'll miss the mystery and majesty of God's creation.

I practice Lent every year (well for the past three years and this one) and this year I decided to do Ash Wednesday the way Catholics do it. I fasted that day and went to Catholic Mass. It was absolutely beautiful. I know that it can be tough for some to understand the rituals, even I had a bad preconceived notion about what I was getting myself into. I'm so glad I went, I truly enjoyed it and walked away knowing that God's presence had been there.

The Catholic church is rich with history. It was the church for 100s of years. I know that this doesn't mean it hasn't had its share of scandals, hurts, theological mishaps, etc. but what church doesn't have these problems? For me, to be sitting, standing, and kneeling at the right time, to be saying the words at the right time, to be bowing and praying at the right time, it was peaceful. It was a joy to think of the millions of others who had/were/will partake in a mass similar to the one I was enjoying. It was a privilege to be part of a service filled with so much history, tradition, and love. I can't put to words the beauty of that service. I felt whole and one with God.

And so I received the ashes upon my head and let the words flow around me, "Remember o woman, you are but dust, and to dust you shall return." I was reminded how very small I am in this expansive universe, and I was so very thankful for my life and for my Savior. God did not have to create me, but He did. My Father did not need me, but He breathed life into me anyway. He does not need my presence in Heaven, but He sent His Son to die for me. This is solemnly exciting. And as I continue these next forty days of Lent I look forward to learning more about the Creator, and the love that sent a Son... a beautiful, perfect, whole Son, down to this earth to die for me, you, and billions of others.

Truly, whether Catholic, Protestant, Lutheran, Baptist, Non-Denominational, I think we can all agree this Lent season is about Jesus, and that's something we can cherish.

Much more happened this week, but I think the power of Wednesday was the highlight, so I'll leave you with that little morsel of a bigger meal :)

Blessings and Love,

Friday, February 20, 2009

Friday Fun

I got this from Jessica at Literary Pursuits :)

Here is what you do...Erase my answers and put yours in. Use the first letter of your name to answer ALL of the following questions. If the person before you has the same 1st letter pick a new one. You CAN NOT use anything twice, and you CAN NOT use your own name for the boy/girl question. After you are done, tag 5 people.......

1. What is your name: Samantha

2. A four letter word: star

3. A boy's name: Sage

4. A girl's name: Sarah

5. An occupation: Shoemaker

6. A color: Umm... sand :D

7. Something you wear: Sandals!

8. A food: Sandwiches

9. Something found in the bathroom: soap

10. A place: Seattle :)

11. A reason for being late: Slept-in

12. Something you shout: you know it makes you wanna... SHOUT! throw your hands up and SHOUT! (Cheating perhaps?)

13. A movie title: Sandlot

14. Something you drink: Sweet tea

15. An animal: Seal

16. A song title: "She Walked Away" Barlow Girl

17. A verb: Sing! :D

And, I'll also tag anyone who wants to do this! :)

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


I'm taking a Spiritual Disciplines class at the Biblical Studies Center. I've been looking forward to this class since I first heard my campus minister was going to teach it way back in November. Thus far, the class has not failed to meet my expectations and exceed them.

This week's readings have been centered around Silence and Solitude. Two things lately that I've been trying to avoid. I often associate solitude with being lonely, and quite frankly my generation does not do silence. Period. Always we have music, tv, friends, something going on in the background. Being lonely lately has been an unbearable feeling for me, so I try to avoid it. So, I've not been practicing silence or solitude.

I used to think of myself as a pretty silent person. And I usally always enjoy my alone time. But as I've been reading chapters from The Sacred Way and Celebration of Discipline I've realized that my alone time has always been mine. The difference concerning solitude, is that solitude is focused on God. It's being silent in His presence. It's being "alone" in His presence. I think I wouldn't need so much "alone time" if I simply spent more focused time in solitude with my Lord and Savior. And I wouldn't fear my "alone time" if I choose to realize I am not alone.

This past weekend I was able to do pretty much nothing. Something that I have not done since being back in Boise. I had a couple of baby-sitting jobs, church ministry, and I was house-sitting, but most of my time was spent relaxing. I'm so thankful that the family I was house and pet sitting for left town. :) I watched movies, hung out with my friend Rachelle, watched old TV shows, read, journaled, ate, slept, it was glorious.

Yet, even after this restful weekend I felt unsettled. As I returned to my dorm late last night and carried on a conversation with my friend Casey May and caught her up on some things in my life that have been making me anxious I realized something... I have not been still in front of God. We are commanded to be still and know that He is God. Why do I not do this? Why do I not follow a COMMAND from the Lord of all Creation? It seems pretty silly to me. And it proves to me that we need to do this. Despite my weekend of doing nothing, I was still anxious at the end of it. I firmly believe if I had spent much of my weekend before the Lord in silence, I would not have been anxious.

This morning has been an awakening in my soul. I feel that even though it's been snowing outside, spring is frolicking in my heart. I'm feeling still in my heart, which brings much peace. Today, my goal is to listen for my Lord. I'm going to stop talking and be silent. I'm going to practice what I've been learning, and what I've been commanded to do.

Last night, on my facebook status I wrote that "I will no longer be living passively (at least for this week...) " So, I'm not. I'm not just going to read about the Disciplines and think to myself how nice they sound, I'm going to practice them. I'm not just going to complain that my small group isn't meeting, I'm going to take charge and set a day and time for us to meet. I'm not just going to worry about the homework that I have to do... I'm going to actually do it.

And even though practicing silence and solitude may seem like a passive activity, I know it will require much on my part to actually do this. I pray that you will get to be still in front of the Lord of all creation this week my dear friends. Rest in His arms. The arms that created you are also big enough to hold you.

Love and Blessings,
Samantha Marie

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

To you and yours I hope you have a wonderful holiday. Remember Who is your True Significant Other today, remember whose Bride you are. Spend some time with Jesus, bask in the perfect love of the Lord.


And then take major delight in the people He has placed around you. Not all Valentines have to be "romantic" love interests. ;)

Enjoy this day all you beautiful people!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Can you say 100?!?!

Wow. I've made it to 100 posts. Which actually doesn't seem like a lot when you consider that I've been on blogger for almost a whole year now. Oh well, it is still quite a milestone and it excites me none-the-less.

I wasn't exactly sure what this post would be comprised of. There is obviously many different subjects I could talk about. But mostly, I just want to dedicate this posting time to my blogging buddies, old and new, those that have been there from the start and those that have just started reading. You have no idea how much you bless me in your comments, posts, and prayers. It's been such a wonderful thing getting to know different young ladies and amazing mature women of faith. Your stories, entirely different from one another each inspire and encourage me in different ways. So thank you for your friendship, technology is amazing fun :)

May God bless you today and always, and no matter what form those blessings make take, recognize that we serve a sovereign Lord and He can make good come from anything, He loves us dearly and always and perfectly, and Jesus died and resurrected for all. Remember to accept those gifts of love and redemption into your life daily dear sisters.

I'm excited to continue our journey of life, very much apart, but yet unified in our words that we type and of course the amazing God we serve.


Thursday, February 5, 2009

Post 99

I did this for facebook, and thought I would share it here too :)

25 Random Things About Me!

Rules: Once you've been tagged, you are supposed to write a note with 25 random things, facts, habits, or goals about you. At the end, choose 25 people to be tagged. You have to tag the person who tagged you. If I tagged you, it's because I want to know more about you.

1.) I'm really bad at describing myself. I like to think it's because I'm mysterious and hard-to-know. I also like to think it's because I have so much to discover about myself. Really, I think I just don't know how to describe myself because I'm afraid to take a look at myself.
2.) I recently realized that I have a passion for teenagers and youth in general. I really hope to start helping with a youth group somewhere and am eagerly awaiting to see if I get to work at a summer camp, part of the time I would be counseling youth.
3.) I don't like music as much as most people. A lot of people can't function without it... I can. I appreciate the beauty of lyrics, but I'd rather just read the lyrics than listen to someone sing them, I'm definitely more of a reader than an auditory person.
4.) I want to try out for American Idol. And I think April, Rachelle, Kate(?!), and I are going to do it. For fun. Although April could totally make it (: We are potentially going to dress insane or act really weird so we can get through to meet the Randy, Simon, Paula, Cara quartet :D
5.) I love email. I love letters. I love texting. I love any written form of communication. Probably far more than if I'm expected to talk. I respond better if I'm writing and have time to form a response. Talking is good, but writing I love. :)
6.) Learning is a favorite of mine. College has been amazing, so much of my learning is self-paced. I really get out what I put into it. Plus I just love the image of sipping some kind of fancy coffee with a textbook plopped open on my lap while I eagerly respond and take notes on my laptop. It makes me feel so... "mature." (:
7.) I always want to be young at heart. I love children and I am so thankful that I baby-sit for a job. Children have an insane amount of energy, and while they may wear me out I really appreciate the fact that they make me realize so much of what I worry about is inconsequential. Who needs to worry about the future when right now, you can pretend you are a chipmunk?
8.) I'm reallllly bad at calling people back and answering the phone. I don't know why. Probably because I'm a better communicator in person. Or in writing. But there are other times when I LOVE phone conversations and will talk for hours on the phone. Depends on my mood.
9.) Some of my favorite memories involve driving around with different people. Just driving. Listening to music and breathing. No words necessary. That shows some serious comfortableness.
10.) I really don't think some people understand my passion for Jesus. God is truly the only thing that matters to me in this world, and from my love from Him I love and have relationships with other people, but aside from Him I'm nothing and my relationships seem meaningless. I can come on strong as the goody-goody Christian girl, and that's okay with me. If people can see my love and passion for Jesus then that means for the most part I'm living in a right relationship with the Lord.
11.) I'm a major procrastinator, but not as bad this semester as I have been. :) I think it's mostly because I would rather hang out with people and develop relationships instead of write a five to six page paper, but all things are important in their own way.
12.) I love to run, perhaps you are laughing to yourself since I am on the bigger side. But seriously, running and me, we are buds. I love losing myself in the pounding of my feet against the pavement or the treadmill. I love especially running outside. During those moments I feel so connected with God and His creation. It's beautiful outside.
13.) I went rafting for the first time back in September. It was one of the best moments of my life. I had the best time, and I went with an amazing group of people, whom I miss dearly for the fellowship and friendship.
14.) I'm deeply relational and it hurts me when people don't pursue me. The worst thing is for me to feel like an outsider and to feel alone. Which is how I've been feeling lately. I'm not saying this in an "oh pity me" way. I think I'm experiencing these feelings of loneliness and separation for a God reason so I'm okay with it. I just hope eventually this changes. But for the moment I'm going to pursue my relationship with God.
15.) I've had a divine appointment before. It was... amazing. God does lead you where He needs you to be at the right time. If you choose to listen to His voice you will be rewarded, and His seeds will be planted.
16.) I love Christian music of any genre. I don't really like mainstream music anymore. The lyrics make me really uncomfortable, and the not so naughty songs always talk about love. Considering I don't have a boyfriend and am not really interested in love in that way those songs just seem silly to me for the moment.
17.) I recently started watching Heroes. I really like the show. It talks about God and science in the same sentence and I appreciate that. Plus there is little to no nudity, few curse words, it's action-packed, crazy, funny, and dramatic. My kind of show :)
18.) Fruit is one of God's most flavorful creations. I really appreciate fruit, it's probably my favorite food group. I'd rather eat cantaloupe or bananas or kiwis or honeydew over cookies, cake, or chocolate. Seriously.
19.) I enjoy writing.
20.) I have a couple of amazing mentors in Boise. One I meet with weekly and one I talk to whenever we both have a chance. They are amazing women of God and I so appreciate their inward and outward beauty, wisdom, love for the Lord and those around them, and honesty.
21.) Laughing, hugging, screaming, and dancing are some of the best endorphins ever.
22.) 21 is my favorite number.
23.) I love talking about God, Jesus, the Holy Spirit, the Bible, theology, the world, sin, redemption, love in Christ, what God is doing in people's lives, etc. It's amazing. I have yet to be bored with these conversations. I hope to talk about God everyday of my life.
24.) I'm currently writing an essay on the Sixties. It's interesting. Well, at least I hope it is.
25.) It took me quite awhile to get to 25, but now that I'm here I can think of so many more things that I'd love to tell you. About how I went to Europe, I broke my arm three times, I love my parents more now than ever before. About how Impact with Synergy is one of the best things that could have happened to me while in Boise. About the amazing people I've been honored to meet and know throughout my life. About how so many of my best friends live in completely different states now. I have a story and I love it (: thanks for letting me share a bit of it with you.

I tag anyone who wants to do this!! (:

Happy February

It is indeed February. And I am indeed tired of this cold winter weather. Although, I will grudgingly admit that it has been warmer the past week or so (30s/40s) and the sun has mostly been shining, so I really shouldn't complain.

Life has been busy, as you can probably tell from my lack of posting. But also, the internet has not been working in my dorm room, so the only time I was able to get on was if I went to the library or the Biblical Studies Center, and let's just admit that little jaunt is not always worth the cold that I could catch from being outside ;)

Anywho, today I was able to slow down, and my internet is once again working, double yay! I'm quite exhausted and have much homework and studying to do though.

I have stuff to say, but my brain is too tired at the moment, so perhaps a more witty and thought-provoking post will come soon. But for now, I'm alive and I've commented on many blogs and that's what matters :D

Much love,