Friday July 15, 2005

For the past few days I didn’t really think much had happened, in fact I began to wonder if I had done much all summer. Tonight let me know that not all was lost – in fact, much was gained. A few nights ago Michael called me to let me know he really wanted to talk to me so I invited him to our Mexican feast. He planned on arriving 4 hour early, but he took the wrong bus. So, we small talked for a while, and then the party started. After adventuring over to the queso and tacos, we kept small talking. I had prayed with convection the past two days that he would come to the Lord. So all the small talk only confused me. Michael said he needed to go, but he wanted something to remember me by, namely my Bible. I was hesitant to to let him own my Bible, especially because he did not seem interested, but it is tough to refuse an offer like that. After I wrote our name in the Bible, he told me that he really thinks he will believe in God, it will only take a matter of time. How anxious I am to continue e-mailing and praying for Michael and Paul both.

Once Michael left the party, I didn’t feel up to ‘cuttin’ a groove’. I played ping pong with Kelly’s three girls. Vanessa reminds me so much of Beth Valentine, especially the way she plays table tennis. She has a hidden power slam that you would never expect. Along the same lines, James Fitzwater would probably fall in love with an Asian woman, Judy could be irresistible to his eyes. All in all it was a great party, and a great way to close out our time here on campus. I know we still have almost a week left, but many students are leaving tomorrow and Sunday.

Now, I want to pause and share how God might be answering my prayers. For many months I have been asking for chastening and correction from the Lord; for Him to to violently crush my pride, yet He is not responding. Instead, He may be telling me to be obedient with what has been given to me. Simple enough except it is so frustrating to wait on the rebuke and discipline I know I need. I know I need it – my heart is so cruel and mean-spirited. It has been particularly bad here. It reminds me of high school and how I felt around ‘the group’, ‘the twelve’. I honestly don’t have a clue where this thorn originates because I loved everyone in the beginning, but something changed. Anyway, this wasn’t the point. I really do love everyone on our team. The point is that I need correction and I wonder why God allows me to go so long without crashing my world. May I choose cheerful obedience, may God grant me the strength to persevere through the tough times, time easy times, and all times.

On a completely different note, I must make a comment about marriage and money. If I ever have a wife, I hop ewe can come together to pray over a budget. I’m afraid I might be too much of a penny pincher and my constant complaints about money would be very aggravating. So first, we need to take into account tithing and savings – 10% each. Then we should list the reoccurring payments – utilities, house, car, insurance, etc. With the remaining, we allot to food, clothing, gifts, emergency, maintenance, and include a small cushion in case something goes wrong. I know it sounds anal, but it seems wise to me. One og the greatest things my provided for me is to leave college debt free. What a blessing! I want to allow my children the same opportunity. I have let too many parenting thoughts slip my mind over all these years, but I know Stacie has a journal full of ideas. She is such an encouragement and testimony that God changes lives and will not let go of His own. FYI: All the knowledge in the world is useless without obedience.