Thursday, June 27, 2013

Color Vibe

 Hellooooooooooo friends!!

  This last weekend I got to do something I've always been wanting to a 5K!! I'm working on this Dream Book that has a list and pictures of all of the things I want to do, the places I want to go (there is A LOT!!), and the things I want to accomplish so that I live my life to the fullest, not wasting a moment.

   Running a 5K is one of my beginning goals. I started running a few years ago but I never actually got around to doing this. Now I can honestly say I have, and I want to do another! This one was fun because every mile there were people standing at a checkpoint to throw color (cornstarch with color in it) on you. Everyone was given a packet of color before the race started & we were supposed to throw it all over the crowd of people. Unfortunately my color didn't stick as much as I wanted it to, but it was still a fun experience!!

 Here are a few pictures. :)

My running partner, mi hermano. :)

Ariel joined in at the end. I found more color to apply to myself. ;)

They had a color party after, full of dancing and throwing color.

Friday, June 21, 2013

Climbing out of the Valley ;)

 Valley - a low point or interval in any process, representation, or situation (according to

  When you come down off of the mountain top it is easy to get stuck in the valley. The year I spent in Colorado was a mountain top experience for me, literally and figuratively. ;) I experienced sooo much growth. Coming home I knew what I was supposed to do. I did it. I stayed on top on the mountain for a while. Even in Kansas. But then something happened. I started slipping down off of the mountain. Little by little at first. A little less time with Jesus each day. A little less time praying for those in need of it. Then I
started feeling sorry for myself again. Missing my friends. My old community. The road God asked me to travel brought me to a few speed bumps. Difficulties. Hurts. Old wounds opened up. Things I wasn't prepared to handle. On my own. Yet on my own did I try to handle them. The end result? I slid a little further down the mountain. Then one day I looked around and realized I was at the bottom of the mountain. I was in the valley. Laying flat down on my face. It hurt. A lot. Yet I wanted to sit down and mope. Nurse my wounds and once again argue with God as to why I was way down here, in the valley. And so down in the bottom of the valley I sat. For a few long painful months. Several times I tried to get up, but I didn't have the strength to stand up all the way, so I just sat back down again and gave up.
   The one day something changed. I woke up and realized that it wasn't fun anymore sitting down at the bottom of the mountain. It was suffocating. I wanted out. I came across this article by Dr. Charles Stanley called "The Valley Experiences in our Life." So exactly what I needed to hear. I'm about to share with you a few of the things that impacted me the most. Maybe you feel like you are in your own valley right now and you want out. There is hope!

  All of us go through valley experiences in life. 
      Adversity is an inevitable part of life. When difficulties come, we tend to wonder why God has allowed us to suffer.  We may even feel abandoned by Him. But Scripture tells us otherwise. Psalm 23 describes the Lord caring for us as tenderly and faithfully as a shepherd cares for His flock. This beloved passage of God's Word is a reminder that He is always present - loving, protecting, and guiding us. He has a purpose for every adversity He allows. The biblical principle is We learn more in our valley experiences than on our mountain tops.

  Every valley is a passageway rather than a destination.
      Eventually, the difficulty will pass. David wrote, "I walk through the valley." (Psalm 23:4)
   God controls the depth and length of a valley experience.
       The deeper the valley, the greater the work God will be able to do through it.
       The valley experience might be shorter and less painful IF it takes only a little suffering to bring about deeper surrender to God in your life. Resisting Him will typically lengthen a period of suffering.

   We learn more in a valley experience than we do on the mountain top.
         In hard times, we are far more likely to discover how to rely on God than when things are going well.
         In the valley, we learn more about the nature of God: His presence in our pain, His love in our loss, and His patience despite our complaints. Through hardship, He may strip us of pride, renew our passion for Him, refine our character, and/or purify our motives.

    Conclusion: No one can completely escape all suffering in life. But as believers, we can face difficulties with confidence.
         If you are willing to walk with Him through the valley, you will experience God’s highest blessing on the next mountaintop.

How I climb out of the valley....
   What really struck me the most is this: The valley experience might be shorter and less painful IF it takes only a little suffering to bring about deeper surrender to God in your life. Resisting Him will typically lengthen a period of suffering.  
  Why am I continually fighting Him? He only wants to help me. Yet I sit here and feel like He is out to get me when I go through times of suffering. Not true. He wants to bring me closer to Him. He wants me to learn who my true strength is and rely on Him instead. He really does have the best in store for me. Sometimes it just involves a long and difficult journey to get there. I'll appreciate it more once I have made it through!
   Are you struggling right now? Do you feel like God has abandoned you? I promise you the answer is NOT SO. He is bringing you through. If you let Him. Let Him lead you through the valley. Don't lay down and give up. Starting climbing out. Sometimes you'll fall and sometimes you'll slide back down. But keep climbing. You will make it!! Maybe I'll see you somewhere along the climb!? :)

Here's a song that came along at the right time. May it encourage you as much as it did me.