Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Christmas Letter~

Hello Friends,
Some of you received my fellows Christmas letter. I wanted to post it on my blog for those of you who did not receive one. I literally ran out of stamps. Well... Here it is!

Dear Friends and Family,

We are in the season of Thanksgiving and Christmas once again! I hope you all enjoyed your Thanksgiving holiday with those closest to you. I was fortunate to head home for a fun and relaxing Thanksgiving with my family and friends. I have been thoroughly enjoying the fellows program, but there is nothing like being with the people you love for the holidays.

The past three months have been beautiful chaos! Between running around like crazy with the middle schoolers of the Falls Church and building strong relationships with the fellows, I have learned so much about my faith and my character. I am meeting spectacular individuals everywhere I go; people who are willing to encourage me, share with me their lives and how God plays a major role. I am so blessed to be coming in contact with so many inspiring people who love the Lord and want to see me grow.

Before Thanksgiving, the youth staff invited me to join them at the National Youth Workers Convention in Nashville, Tennessee. The experience was amazing on so many levels because not only did I have the opportunity to meet other youth workers, but also, I attended several workshop seminars with famous published youth ministry experts like Chap Clark, Kara Powell, and Heather Flies. The five-day trip created a bonding experience for the staff because we had the opportunity to learn and worship together in a fun environment. I am so blessed to have a job that I love: a job where I can feel challenged and also succeed, have fun and learn, and best of all, serve amazing young people.

The fellows are wonderful, too! In addition to our busy schedules, we are trying hard to build an intentional community. We see each other at least 3-4 days out of the week for class, Bible study, seminar, round-table discussion, youth group and if we have time, we try to squeeze in a few social activities. As we grow in relationship together, we are recognizing our unique personalities that God has so strategically created and brought together to build this special group. I am excited to see how this year ends and how the new begins with the fellows and all that God has planned for us. Please help me to pray for them as we move into the next year: pray for our internships, the many dimensions of our fellows program, and our friendships. Pray for God’s plan: that they may be ready and willing to go wherever God leads them! Their names are Rebecca, Tim, Ryan, Kristin, Griffin, Katherine, Greg, Ryan W., Lauren, Ben and Chris.

Thank you so much for your continuous prayers and support this fall season. You have been such a blessing in my life and I just wanted to let you know that I am so thankful for you all. I pray that we can stay in touch via email or if you’re in town, come visit us at the Falls Church sometime.

Blessings to you and your families this Christmas,


Fellows Christmas Photo

Sibling Photo! New as of Winter 2010 (Matthew 6 and Lucas 9!)

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Neti Pot.

Dear Friends,

I cannot remember the last time I was this sick. Sick as a dog. Actually, I do. I remember the time when I was so sick last fall that I had no idea what to do with myself - I WAS MISERABLE.

Today, I am experiencing it all over again. Perhaps I have a special strand of swine-flu... I am not sure what I have to be honest. But the symptoms include headache, body ache, chapped nostrils, sore throat, major post-nasal drip, and drowsiness. I feel like I just ran a marathon, gone through a cycle in the washing machine, fallen out of a tree, and smacked my head against a door far too many times. Sounds appealing, no? What is possibly holding me together?

This here, my friends, is a neti pot. Now I am sure that I do not look any more graceful than this lady does... but it works WONDERS. I was introduced to Neti, here, by a friend of mine. During my sickness last year, she brought it to me at school (James Madison University) and we decided to whip that puppy out in the public bathroom by the nearby dining hall. A bathroom we thought was private and pretty quite. Little did we know...

At this point in time, I didn't know how to work a neti pot. My dear friend helped me to create the saline mixture; she showed me how to exactly tilt my head and pour in the solution into my sore nostril. Next thing I know... I am screaming my head off an extremely unexpected snotty substance pours out of my nose. You would scream too if you felt solution going through your nasal cavity and sometimes through YOUR BRAIN if you happened to tilt incorrectly. About 5 minutes into the agonizing and surprising creaming, a lady from the nearby dining hall came into the bathroom. "Is everything okay in here!? I could hear you from outside." We just stood there: neti pot in a dry nostril. Not a very appealing or satisfying response...

All in all -> Neti Pot = Miracle. My congestion broke down and I was neti-ing like it was 1999.

Thank you, Mr. Neti, wherever you are. If I could, I would shake your hand. This little neti pot is saving me today... and Nyquil. I have slept near 15 hours today.

Neti On,