Monday, May 31, 2010

GoG 149: The Country Line Dancing

Yesterday was Sunday .... so a good day for several reasons. :) But one fun thing - I got to do a little country line dancing! Sooo fun! .... We're doing a cowboy-ish kind of theme for Vacation Bible School this year. VBS starts in a week. So we had a lady from our church teach us some line dancing. It was a blast! I can't wait for Sunday night .... we'll be line dancing it up! :D

I love to dance! Nearly any kind of dancing! So I was gitty with excitement .... the others were laughing at me ... imagine that! ;) And that gittiness is God's grace at work, wouldn't ya say? I sure would! .... Go dancin' sometime! It is sooo fun! :D

GoG 148: The Drive Home from Nashville

On my way home from Nashville on Saturday, I rolled down my windows and cranked up the Southern Gospel .... I did tell y'all I'm passionate about this kind of music, didn't I?? Ha ha! Yep! I am nearly obsessed! ;) It's such good stuff! I just had a really good time. .... I've really grown to enjoy doing things by myself these days ... and I enjoy driving ... and I got to drive through Kentucky, which has some cool landscapes. And the weather was great! So it was a fun drive home.

GoG 147: The Trip to Nashville

Friday I went to Nashville to see Emily!!!! That is grace in and off itself!

~ I got a hug from her when I go there :)
~ We sat on her couch and chatted for a while
~ We watched an episode of the TV show Bones together
~ We went to Ci Ci's pizza for dinner
~ We got "checked out" by an entire restaurant full of men .... we were actually a bit creeped out ... but after the creepiness wore off, we felt cute. Haha! Grace, indeed. ;)
~ We watched a movie together

It was really good to see her!

GoG 146: The Southern Gospel Marathon

Thursday was the last day of the Mackinaw trip. Hannah and I didn't doddle getting home that day. I needed to get back by 6pm for worship team practice, so we headed straight down through Michigan, into Indiana, and home. And my glimpse of grace for Thursday was listening to Southern Gospel with Hannah. Mmm ... it was good. :) I was excited because Hannah likes harmonies too. So I was able to share my joy, my passion for Southern Gospel music with her a good chunk of the ride home. I guess I know several people who really enjoy Southern Gospel, but I know far more who don't. So I always get excited when I can share my love of male 4-part (or more) harmony with people.

Yay! :)

GoG 145: The Bike Ride Along the Lake

Wednesday of the Mackinaw trip was kind of a "veg" day for us by the lake. Hannah and I kind of went our own separate ways for part of the day - she took a book to a "plagueless" area of the lakeside while I rode my bike around the city.

Let me clarify "plagueless" as a side note:
So ... there were some kind of creepy-looking flies down by the beach ... and throughout the area ... all week. Oh my gosh! They were insane. When we tried to walk along the beach, we were attacked! Thankfully, they weren't stinging bugs, but wow, they were crazy! There were probably millions of them just flyin' around ruining people's vacation! Ha ha! They buzzed around us, landed on us ... attacked us, really! ... no matter how much bug spray we used!! So we ended up calling them "The Plague."

Back to the grace ... 'cause oh my word, what's the grace in "The Plague"??? Ha ha! ...... The grace I DID find in the day was just soaking up the lake ... not literally ... the water was still pretty cold, and neither one of us brought our swimsuits ... but just looking at the lake. I stopped a few times along my bike ride near the lake to jump off my bike and just take it all in. .... Lake Michigan is one of my favorite places in the world. Oh ... and it wasn't Lake Michigan ... it was Lake Huron ... ha! So please disregard "Lake Michigan" in my last few posts - it was Lake Huron. ... Anyways ... the lake was gorgeous! I love lakes! So it was my grace from God for the day .... just to sit and look ... just to ride my bike around and look at the lake.

GoG 144: The Adorable Jamaican Guy :)

Tuesday was the second day of our Mackinaw trip. We went to Mackinac Island for the day ... and it was a ton of fun! I could talk about several glimpses of grace for the day ... looking like an idiot while trying to ride a bike after probably 8 or more years of NOT riding a bike (it was hilarious!), the sites as we rode our bikes around the 8-mile trail around the island, the ferry ride (gorgeous ... and such a blast!), walking through the fun little shops, getting an ice cream cone, on and on ... but ... the glimpse of grace I will tell you about involves an adorable Jamaican guy giving me his phone number! :D Ha ha ha!

At the end of the day on Tuesday, we were headed to the dock to catch the ferry back to Mackinaw City. At the dock, we ran into a group of guys working there. One of them asked us how we were doing, and I perked up, as I often do, and smiled and said, "Good, How are you?" He kept walking, didn't look at me - so he either didn't expect an answer and kept walking or he didn't hear me - either way ... the other guy, the cute Jamaican guy, looked up from putting our bikes away, gave me the warmest, friendliest smile ever, and said, "Good!"

So Hannah and I went to the bathroom, and I asked her ... "Did you see the way that guy looked at me?" She didn't notice. So we headed back to the dock a few minutes later. And the guy gave me the same look. As we walked to sit down, Hannah said, "I saw it that time!" So we sat down ... just waiting for the ferry. We were pretty early, so we sat for quite a long time. Well, eventually, this guy came down to our end of the dock to talk to one of the other guys ... and then, after a little while, made his way over to us. He struck up conversation with us for awhile ... all the while smiling hugely at me. Adorable. He was so friendly, and he smiled the whole time. He laughed at me when I finally saw his name tag and said, "Well, half the questions I've asked you are answered on your name tag." On his name tag, it read "Shepler's," "Damian," and "Jamaica." Where he works, his name, and where he's from. Ha! We had a good time. He laughed at my quirkiness, and he was really fun.

I'll spare all the girly details 'cause I could probably go all day about my 45-minute crush on the guy. ;) But let me share just one more fun detail. Later that day, after we said goodbye to Damian, we road our bikes back to our hotel. On the way, Hannah crossed a street, and I saw a car coming from the corner of my eye ... so I stopped ... and as it turned, I saw it was him! Damian. Ha! He pulled over to the side of the rode, and I hopped off my bike and headed over to his window. I asked, "What are you doing here?" and laughed ... and he just gave me a big grin, handed me a piece of paper, and said, "Call me sometime!" Ha ha! It was hilarious! And what a good story, right?

.... And that's the story of the cute, Jamaican guy named Damian. :) It's grace for a guy to think you're cute, right? .... Well, of course it is! ;)

GoG 143: The Swing By The Lake

Monday. Good day. :) Hannah and I left for Mackinaw City, Michigan for four days next to Lake Michigan, traveling on the ferry to Mackinac Island, and just relaxing and enjoying our singleness together. .... We took the long way to Mackinaw ... driving up the west coast of Michigan. Hannah and her family used to travel to Bear Lake (on the west coast), and she wanted to check out that area again. And the drive was my glimpse of grace for that day for several reasons ....
~ Time with Hannah ... chatting and laughing and listening to music.
~ The sites ... Lake Michigan is gorgeous - and all the trees and hills and landscapes were beautiful!
~ I love to travel ... seeing the sites is great, but I also just like to drive. I guess I didn't drive - Hannah did - but still ... ;)
~ Ice cream! ... I think we had ice cream every day of the trip. And ice cream just makes life good!

~ The swing ... Now that I think about it, I remember the swing, and it was the most vivid glimpse of grace for the day. There was a swing set on the shore of Lake Michigan in a little town called Frankfort ... and right before we left, I jumped on that swing and started swinging. Swings are a ton of fun for some reason. You're just swinging back and forth, but it always makes me grin really big every time I swing - no matter where I am. I don't know if I just feel silly for swinging like a little kid or I'm feeling so sick that I can't help but laugh at myself for being so dumb for continuing to swing or the fact that it feels like a roller coaster or that it's just flat out fun. But I always grin really big and giggle like a school girl every time I swing. And I remember thinking .... "Ha! This is grace!" .... while I was swinging. :)

So yeah .... go traveling sometime. It is grace in action. :)

GoG 142: The Grace Afterall ... Again :)

Well, this is awful ... but I don't remember what my glimpse of grace was for last Sunday. Wow. That's what I get for not staying caught up with my GoGs. Sheesh maneesh. ;)

It was Sunday though. And Sunday's are always glimpses of God's grace 'cause they are always my favorite day of the week - without fail. I love Sundays. I love being with God's people. I love worshiping and listening to our God's-appointed shepherd with God's people. I love being with my kids. I love going out to lunch with friends from church. I love Sunday afternoon naps. I love spending extra time with Jesus. It's just a great day all the way around.

So ... even when I "forget" God's grace, it is still there. Praise God!

Sunday, May 30, 2010

GoG 141: The Grace Afterall

Well, I'm behind again ....

So last Saturday was the end of one of the busiest weeks I've had in a while. I had been meeting with friends, meeting with my SoZo kids, getting things ready for our SoZo mission trip ... just go, go, go all week. It was utter madness, really. Last Saturday, I had planned to go see a couple of my SoZo guys play soccer in the afternoon ... then I was headed to a friend's house for the evening - it was gonna be a long day. Well, I ended up running late, and since I wasn't going to make it to the first soccer game on time ... and I was so stressed and overwhelmed to the point of tears ... I decided not to go to the games at the last minute. I didn't want to go to my friend's house at the end of the day either - I was just so exhausted from a super long week! But grace came to me as it always does. :)

Rather than going to the games, I was able to rest. I plopped down on the couch and watched a movie. I made my "world-famous" rice crispy treats. I made the drive to Beech Grove to hang out with some friends. And it was a marvelous evening. Not only did I get to rest after a long and crazy week, I got to hang out with some pretty cool guys. We played games; we ate dinner; we laughed ... it was a pretty fun night. And oh what grace ... to rest, to laugh, to fellowship. Thank you, Lord!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

No more laxness

Golly! This morning was rough. I was in a terrible mood, and every little thing set me off. Have mornings like that from time to time? Sure ... we all have bad moments, bad mornings, bad days ... sometimes bad weeks, months, or years ... seasons in our lives. But hopefully, only from time to time!!! Today was one of those times. I woke up a bit grouchy. I stayed up too late last night (The Gaither Vocal Band is a GOOD reason to stay up late, but still ...). I was a little grouchy ... I don't like to get up early. But a couple of things happened (nothing big at all) ... that set me off in a state of bad attitudeness. Blah. And it was bad. I was super grouchy, and eventually, I started crying. Sheesh. I was being a baby, really ... upset ... stressed, really ... about a couple of silly things not worth getting upset over (like nearly everything I get "upset" over).

Sure, these "bad" things that popped up could have caused my bad attitude, but really, ultimately, it boiled down to a lack of God's Word in my heart and mind. Any time I get lax in my Bible reading, my attitude really, REALLY suffers. I've been reading a bit this week ... I've been memorizing Colossians 3:1-17 ... but I haven't been spending real, quality time with Jesus ... really taking the time to get into the Word. Hence, my bad attitude. Bluck. :(

I've been in and out of this laxness over the past year. Man. It's awful. So I'm gonna take the 21-day challenge given by one of my guys. Andy's been leading our SoZo Sr. High Bible Study for a few months now ... and he challenged us with the 21-day challenge a couple of weeks ago ... I did nothing. But I'm gonna try again! Read my Bible for 21 days ... and get BACK INTO the habit. Sad that I need to do that .... but sometimes we get our mind off of the things above and on the earthly things ... and we need our perspective changed.

Come with me! Have you been struggling to make Jesus your all? Take the 21-day challenge with me! It'll change us ... for life! :)

GoG 140: The GVB Concert ... INCREDIBLE!!!

*Big Sigh*

Man ... I got back from the greatest concert of my life last night! The Gaither Homecoming at Conseco ... last night! Gosh, it was so good! I won't say too much about it here 'cause I'm gonna expand on it on my new blog (www.micalsbucketlist.blogspot.com) .... 'cause going to a GVB concert is on my bucket list. So read there, if you wanna here some little stories about the evening. :)

My glimpse of grace for yesterday was male 4-part/5-part harmony. *Another big sigh* Oh my goodness! I am in love! Some of you know that David Phelps is my all-time favorite singer! Amazing voice!!!! Well, last night .... oh, man .... last night, I heard another guy - Wes Hampton - who was just as incredible!!! Wow! These brilliant talents were my glimpse of grace yesterday. I nearly cried half a dozen times! The harmonies are so gorgeous! And GOD gave them their talent for me to enjoy. Man, oh man ... I N C R E D I B L E ! ! ! You MUST youtube David Phelps ... and then Wes Hampton! Do it! I'm serious! You'll NEVER hear a sweeter sound!!!!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

GoG 139: The Lord Most High

Oh my word! Could it be true??? Mical Masterson is finally caught up with her blog project??? Wow!!!!!! Now, that's a glimpse of grace right there!!!!!! Hahaha!

Ha! I guess I'll go with my other glimpse of grace for the day anyway. :) ..... Again, like I've said a couple different times on my blog, I am singing on the worship team this month. Tonight, we were practicing for Sunday morning ... and one of the songs were are singing is called "Lord Most High" ... or "Be Magnified." Really great song. We don't sing it often, so I wanted to make sure we sang it this month! The chorus goes like this ... "Throughout the endless ages, You will be crowned with praises, Lord Most High. Exalted in every nation. Author of all creation, Lord Most High. Be magnified." .... Oh! It is so good! You gotta hear it with the music to get the full affect ... but man, oh man! I could get pentecostal with that song!!! :D

Worship is so cool .... and so full of grace :)

GoG 138: The Rather New Friend :)

There is a really gorgeous girl with the most beautiful eyes I've ever seen. She's a rather new friend of mine. Her name is Hannah Kay. She is marrying the marvelous James Nilsen. I haven't gotten to know her well over the past several months since I met her .... but she recently told me that we should be friends - to which I said "yes, indeed" and was thrilled. :) That is grace by itself ... new friends - especially cute, fun, kind friends like Hannah. But the grace for Wednesday was that she invited me to help out with wedding plans. So not only does she want us to be friends but she wants me to help her with her most important day of her life?? Wow! Is it weird that I was so flattered? ... I guess there's a back story that some of you don't know ... nor will you know ... but still, I was flattered. I was thankful. I was excited to help. So I went. And I helped address envelopes. And it was good. :)

GoG 137: The Ice Cream, Popcorn, Elizabeth, and Sherlock Holmes Date

Tuesday I hung out with Elizabeth - she's one of my many kids. :) I picked her up, and we grabbed some ice cream and some popcorn and headed back to my place to watch Sherlock Holmes. Great movie, by the way! .... It was great to laugh with her and see how excited she got during SH (she owns the movie - she's seen it a million times - but she loves it every time!). It was a great afternoon just hangin' out with one of my girls. I have girls! Now, isn't that grace? Yes, indeed!

GoG 136: The Wind-Down Day

Monday was a wind-down day from the spaghetti dinner chaos. It was such a good day ... but oh, the work! So I took Monday to just chill .... so yes ... I had another rest day ... I write about those every now and again under my GoGs. Like I said during the last "Rest GoG," rest from time to time is always good .... always needed .... and always a glimpse of grace. :)

GoG 135: The (AMAZING) Spaghetti Dinner and a Show!!!

Oh my goodness! I have the most amazing kids in the world!!!!!

Sunday night, we put on a spaghetti dinner and a show for one of our many fundraisers this year. We've never done a dinner like it before .... and a lot of planning went in to it ... so I was a bit nervous. But it was absolutely amazing!!!! A lot of hard work for the kitchen people ... but man, oh man! Amazingness, indeed. You must go on the SoZo facebook page and check out the pictures!

The kids dedicated nearly their entire day to the event .... practicing skits, setting up tables, tearing down the sanctuary, cooking food .... wow! No one complained. No one ditched. Everyone was so patient and kind and enthusiastic! We had tons of people from church show up plus family members of people from church .... and we made $700 from the event!!!! It was awesome!!!! A wonderful day! My kids were so great! I couldn't be more proud!!!! And they even surprised me with flowers afterward! Ahh! Amazing day!!!! And such grace! Such grace!!!

GoG 134: The Rent-A-Youth Girlies

Last Saturday, I had 5 of the girls from my youth group over to my house to do some work for my dad. We're doing something called rent-a-youth as a fundraiser for our SoZo mission trip this summer ... and a few families from the church have been renting out the youth to do jobs for them. The girls did all kinds of jobs for my dad, and they did such a good job! They piled broken wood and branches and weed whacked and swept off our basketball court ... all kinds of good work ... and all without a complaint. It was actually a lot of fun! It was great to spend some time with my girls ... and get some hard work done too!

GoG 133: The Indiana Beauty

When you travel around the U.S., which states are your favorite? Which sites do you get the most excited about? I love Michigan and Tennessee! I love the lake and the mountains! .... Do you ever say "Oh, I pick Indiana! Man, what a cool state! Can't wait to go back there!" ??? Ha! Yeah ... didn't think so.

I think Indiana gets a bad wrap sometimes. I've heard people say "There's nothing to do in Indiana. There's nothing to see in Indiana. Indiana is boring." Have you heard that? I sometimes agree with them. But in the back of my mind, I always feel a little bummed. I think, "Hey, Indiana is cool too. I love Indiana. Hey, that's my home you're talking about!" Indiana may not have gorgeous mountains or a cool lake or "memorable" sites to see ... but it is still cool in its own way.

I say all of that to say ... I found my glimpse of grace in the "sites" of Indiana one day last week ... right in Danville actually. I was on my way somewhere, drivin' toward town, and I looked out my window at the fields .... the fields of Danville, Indiana. I saw the wide-open space ... I saw the trees against a blue sky ... I saw the green of the trees and the blue of the sky and the white of the clouds .... it was really pretty. And I got to thinking about how God really does know what He's doing. He made all of that. He made the trees and the fields and the sky and the clouds. He put those things together ... He put those colors together. He made Indiana. And it's all beautiful!!!!

So ... what did you say your favorite state was again? Indiana is pretty cool. Don't dis it! ;)

GoG 132: The After School Buddy

Last week was the last week of after school on the Eastside for the school year. I went the very last two days - Wednesday and Thursday. And for some reason, the kids were extra affectionate ... and several of them asked me to help them with their homework and help with during reading time - on both days. It was so fun to be "popular" as I kept telling the other leaders ... and yes, I WAS bragging a bit. ;)

But what I loved more than being popular was that Mathanael was my #1 guy! He had been my buddy most of the semester. I helped him with his homework and reading more than any other leader this past semester, and he really wanted me to be his buddy last week too. :) And he was so sad when I had to leave on Thursday afternoon. "Are you coming to the summer stuff, Miss Mical?" "Why do you have to leave early, Miss Mical?" "Can't you play just one more game of jacks with me, Miss Mical?" Oh, it was priceless! And such grace too. I touched this little guy's heart. And he touched mine.

GoG 131: The Little Phrase of Grace

My friend, Ben, and I got together for one of our monthly friend dates last week, and he and I were talking about a situation in my life that really hurt me. It took me a long time to get over this something ... and in a way, I will carry with me for the rest of my life. And I found grace in one little phrase that he said to me ...

"Mical, you got a raw deal."

Basically, Ben was legitimizing my pain. He wasn't annoyed that I still hurt over the "something" even months and months later. He didn't say "just suck it up." He simply let me know that I wasn't crazy for being hurt. And that little phrase really touched me. It really helped me see a glimpse of God's grace.

GoG 130: The Monthly Collaboration

Once a month, I meet with several youth pastors from all around Hendricks County. We all meet up once a month to chat about various topics in youth ministry, pray with one another, and offer support. It is an incredible blessing! Collaboration is such a great thing, ya know? And really, collaboration is grace from God. He gives us people to talk with, brainstorm with, pour our hearts out to. We don't have to go it alone ... we don't have to go anything alone ... not even youth ministry!

GoG 129: The Chat with Uncle Mikey :)

A couple of weeks ago, I was really struggling with some very girl-ish kinds of thoughts .... and really, they were probably ONLY Mical-ish kinds of thoughts. I don't think many people (many girls) think as much about what they want in a husband as I do. I overthink about it all the time. Probably to the point of it being unhealthy. I'll probably be single my entire life 'cause my standards are too high. ;) So that's why I say I was struggling with very Mical-ish kinds of thoughts.

I got to talking about them with my Uncle Mikey from church. He gave me lots of good advice ... just about not worrying so much ... just going with the flow ... not getting so caught up in thinking and overthinking and expectations that I miss out on what God really has for me. You'd have to be there to get the good stuff ... but it was just really encouraging ... but it also helped me realize that I haven't let go of some things (at least not entirely) that I thought I'd let go of months ago! So it was also eye-opening ... or heart-opening, I should say. Never easy. But always good for me. So having my heart opened a bit was a glimpse of grace ... but also, just getting to chat with Uncle Mike was grace. What a gift. :)

I even got a "I love you, kido" at the end of the night! :)

GoG 128: The Blessing and Conviction

Okay! I'm determined to get these done tonight! I'm determined to catch up with my GoGs!!!! :)

GoG 128: The Blessing And Conviction

Earlier this month for worship, Jon, Uncle Mike, and I sang several songs that we all just love - some of my favorite worship songs ever! :) One of them is called "His Delight." The chorus goes like this: "His delight is hearing praises from His own. So day and night, I will lift them to His throne. And I who was nothing now have mercy in His sight. Through His Son, I've become His delight." I was blessed by this chorus that Sunday morning because I was reminded that God takes delight in me. No matter what I've done or how I've denied His lordship in my life, He ALWAYS loves me. He ALWAYS delights in me. Well ... He doesn't like the sin I commit ... but He forever delights in calling me His daughter. See? Isn't that good? :)

Also, during worship, we sang other songs like "I See the Lord" and "'Tis So Sweet to Trust in Jesus." I was convicted by these songs because I hadn't been trusting Jesus with my life - I'd been worrying about the silliest and littlest of things ... and I hadn't had Jesus "seated on the throne of my life." I'd been distracted by too many other things. .... It wasn't an easy worship service 'cause conviction is never easy .... but just as my pastor has been sharing the past couple of Sundays ... we should count it a gift when we can FEEL God's conviction ... but the hearts of many are growing cold, and one day, many people will never feel or hear God's conviction.

And these were my glimpses of grace for the day :)

GoG 127: The Jon Hugs :)

Saturday, May 8th - My friends, Jason and Melissa, got married!!!!! So exciting! Such a good day! I got to help clean up, talk to some pretty great people, give Jason and Melissa a hug ... it was a fun day. But the best part of the day was hugs from Jon. (For those who read my blog consistently, you may notice that I blog about this guy a lot ... you might think I'm in love with him or something ... probably 'cause I AM! ... Ha! Anyways ....) Jon is just a cherished friend of mine. I have a very few friends who hold a super dear place in my heart - and Jon Adamson is one of them. He's one of those life-giving friends ... ya know, the kind that every single time you're around 'em, you feel better about life! :) ... Well, I don't get many hugs from this guy. I love hugs from him! But I don't get many. And that Saturday, I got not one but two! Two hugs from my buddy, Jon! And it simply made my day! Hugs are pretty great when they are from dear friends ... they are so great that they are glimpses of God's grace. :)

GoG 126: The Witch and the Dolls

One of my kidos - Kaycee Marshall - loves to act. She's really good too! Hilarious. Sweet. Fun. She's got a super great acting personality! ...... She was in a play the first weekend of the month: "I Hate Shakespeare!" It was pretty hilarious - would've been even more funny if I knew more of Shakespeare's work ... Richard III? Henry the something or another? I don't know. Give me Hamlet or A Midsummer Night's Dream ... maybe even The Taming of the Shrew. Ha! Anyways ... Kaycee played a cheerleader and a witch. Her witch character was hilarious. She had a cauldron, green skin, long black hair, and a couple of dolls who played as her "fellow witches." It was great to see her act and just simply go and support her.

It's such a gift of God's grace to have my kidos .... and to travel to their events - whether they be plays, karate performances, basketball, softball, whatever! They are MY kids - and they are so talented!

GoG 125: The Jon Voice!!!

Well, every Thursday this month may have the same GoG - I get to sing with Jon Adamson!!!!! :D

He's my second favorite singer IN THE WORLD (right after David Phelps, of course!)!!! Soooo good! You must hear him!!!! And I get to sing with him every Thursday and Sunday this month for worship at Calvary. It's grace because God creates such sweet sounds such as the singing voice of Jonathan Duane Adamson. :)

Muy bueno!!!! Mmm ... I love Jon's voice!

GoG 124: The Rest ... yet again

GoG 124: The Rest ... yet again

The Wednesday oh, so long ago (124th day of 2010) was a relaxation day ... movies, probably sweet tea (how can I remember when it was so long ago!) ... just some chill time.

Rests in the midst of busy lives are such grace ... I don't deserve 'em 'cause I get myself into my overcommitted lifestyle - but God gives 'em to me anyway! Yay!

GoG 123: The God Who Speaks to My Heart :)

Well, I'm gonna take GoG 123 to tell y'all a little about what God's been doing in my life. It'll be my glimpse of grace for Tuesday, May 4th. Wow ... I really am behind, huh? ;)

I'm in a crazy stage of life. An "in-between" stage. I'm a college grad ... single ... wanting to work with kids and youth. I've had a few big disappointments in the past 3 years ... been developing lots of insecurities ... and my calling has been changing a bit. Whew! It's still overwhelming when I really sit down and think deeply about it. .... So ... I'm in a "self-discovery/setting the stage for the rest of my life" kind of season in my life. Tough to articulate specifics ... but to put it simply ... ever since I started leading the youth ministry at Calvary, I've had doubts - "I'm a woman." "I have no training." "I wanted to be a public school teacher, Lord." "I'm TOO sanguine!" "I'm so inadequate." On and on. But lately, God's been confirming in my heart that I'm EXACTLY where He wants me right now. Through words of encouragement from friends, His Word, through other things I've read, and by simply speaking to my heart. It's been amazing!

I'm still kind of "feeling out" my calling. Even though I'm where God wants me NOW ... I feel like He may lead me somewhere else (either physically, emotionally, spiritually) soon. So I'm testing out different places in ministry, seeking His face for direction and specifics, and serving where I'm at ... all while trying to figure out my temperament, my strengths, my weaknesses, my dreams and aspirations, etc. But through it all, it's amazing to know that God SPEAKS to my heart - CONFIRMS in my heart what He wants for me ... and at just the right time too. Wow! His grace is amazing!!!!

GoG 122: The Clouds a Rollin' in

I really like to walk ... I don't do it as much as I would like to ... but I really like to walk. I often walk in the Danville Park or the Avon Town Hall Park ... sometimes at Hummel, etc. I was walking through the park ... ha! Again - oh, so long ago now - and I saw the clouds rollin' in for a storm was about to hit.

I really like clouds ... they are really cool. And I really like storms. So it was really cool to see the clouds roll in during my walk. And really, that's all I've got to say. Clouds are a glimpse of God's grace 'cause they're just so cool! :)

GoG 121: The Skit Prep

Back to the GoG'in .... still sooooo behind! ;)

GoG 121: The Skit Prep

This past Sunday night, the SoZo youth and myself ... along with some cool parents ... put on a spaghetti dinner and a show as a fundraiser for our mission trip this summer. Well ... oh, so long ago ... back on day 121 of this 365-day year ... we had our first skit practice. I'm on the worship team this month, so I can't be back in Sunday School until 9:30am instead of 9am. Before worship, I set the youth to work on the skits. It was our very first practice, and there was no adult in the room ... so I was a little worried they wouldn't get much done. But I walked back there after worship, and they had the entire first skit done, practiced, and nearly ready to go! I was so proud! And it was my glimpse of grace for the day because my kids are amazing! And I was reminded of that! :)

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

GoG 120: The Man from 1 By Youth

Wow! Like I said in my previous post ... 1 By Youth was amazing!!!!!! I did all kinds of jobs that day: I helped youth pastors check in their youth groups; I painted ceiling tiles; I swept sidewalks; I mulched a bit; I organized lunches; I pulled weeds ... lots of good work was done that day. That should be enough grace for the day, right? The ability and passion and exciteableness in serving?? Oh, it was! But one small ... very small part of the day ... was my glimpse of grace for that specific day at 1 By Youth.

There was a man at the event named Eli. He helped us run the computers for check-in. It was a pretty hectic morning. Several youth groups came to the event, so there were several youth pastors coming in to turn in paperwork and sign in their kids. I was the "cash line." I really don't like handling money. I shouldn't have volunteered for the job, but no one else was ... so ... there ya go - I volunteered. I was really overwhelmed all morning. At one point, the computer wasn't working. At another point, I didn't save a document right. At yet another point, I didn't give some guy his receipt, so I had to run all over the building to track him down. And on and on. .... Do you know me? I start freaking out the minute things go just a little wrong. So I was completely overwhelmed ... frantic at moments. Toward the end of the morning, right before the youth groups were sent out to their job sites, I told Eli that I was "so sorry" ... that I was "more trouble than I was worth." And you know what? He looked at me and said, "Don't you think we have a better self-perspective than that?" I was totally blown away! He didn't look at me and say ... "yeah! Wish we hadn't asked you to volunteer!" He didn't say, "You're right ... get out of here, you crazy woman!" I must've thought that was exactly what he was gonna say 'cause I was totally taken aback to here him speak truth ... to see his right perspective in the situation.

Later, he said something even more grace-full. I was telling him that I often get overwhelmed over such little things ... that I'm a spaz ... etc. And he looked at me again and asked, "You do know that God made you that way, right?" And again .... total God moment. Total grace goin' on here! Eli was telling me to EMBRACE who I am. He didn't agree that I was a spaz. He didn't tell me I was a lunatic and walk away. He didn't get annoyed at me. He simply said, "God made you the way you are." What a gift! It truly was!!!!

I've been thinking a lot about who I am lately. I've been reading about the temperaments ... and seeking God for His calling for my life ... and trying to embrace who I am. Eli's words that day were an important catalyst that helped me start down a journey of sorts in embracing who I am in Christ. And like I've said in at least one other post - I am a Sanguine ... at least mostly. And I need to role with it! Thank you, Eli, for that reminder! It was such a glimpse of God's grace.

GoG 119: The Prep for 1 By Youth

GoG 119: The Prep for 1 By Youth

April 30th was the night before the big service project in Indy. 1 By Youth is a nation-wide service project going on until 1 million youth step out and serve their communities. It began April 24th in Mannasah, Virginia. May 1st was the project in Indianapolis ... on the Eastside based out of Brookside Park to more specific. It's an amazing idea that is not only being thought about but being put into action! And I had the amazing opportunity to be apart of that day!

The grace in that is that I got to serve.
And the grace in that is that I was excited to serve!

GoG 118: The Sing

Wow .... how on earth did I think I could blog every SINGLE day of 2010??? What a lofty goal! ... Oh well. It has been a great project. It's really helped me see God in a new way. And that was the ultimate goal, right? Right. So all is well.

Well, on to some more blogging. I'm weeks behind ...... and I won't get caught up tonight ... or this morning, rather ... it's 1:25am ... but I'm gonna blog a bit before bed.

GoG 118: The Sing

All this month I've been leading worship at Calvary with my buddy, Jon. Oh my, it's been great! Those who know me well, know that I love to sing! It's one of my all-time favorite things to do! And singing with Jon is my favorite singing that I do! Jon and I love the same kind of music. We both love to sing. We're both pretty good. He's far better than I am ... but we can both do more than simply carry a tune, so that makes singing together more fun!

That first worship team practice was great 'cause it set the tone for the whole month. Jon and I met earlier than the rest of the team to pick out songs. I got there early, eating my dinner while looking through the song list. He strolled in a little late (as he often does) ;) ... with a big grin on his face ... and that loveable, care-free attitude that he often exudes. :) It made my night to simply sit with him and pick out music, chat with him, laugh with him .... and then sing the night away with him.

God's grace in this night was having a friend in Jon Adamson.
God's grace in this night was laughing with and at a dear friend.
But ultimately, God's grace in this night was having a night to sing with one of my favorite guys in the whole world. :)

Friday, May 14, 2010

GoG 117: The Little Red-Headed Baby

I think I've shared this before ... but babies have scared me for quite some time. They are tiny and fragile ... and I never know how to hold 'em. ... Well, babies have been popping up everywhere lately! So I'm trying to get some good practice in ... just in case I ever have kids someday. :) I babysat the McRoberts kids for the second time recently (well, the second time since Sam's been born) ... and Sam fell asleep on me again. I may have had a GoG talking about Sam falling asleep on me. But this time was even better. He fell asleep, and instead of putting him to bed, I let him lay on me.

There's just something about a little red-headed boy putting his little red-headed head down on my chest, breathing deeply, and falling asleep. Totally precious. And like I said in a previous post (I think), it makes me think of my own kids someday. How much more precious they will be to me when their little red-headed heads lay on my chest as they fall asleep. (And yes! I WILL have red-headed children! ... Well, strawberry blonde ... how 'bout that?) :D

GoG 116: The Walk Through Hummel Park

I've been taking lots of walks lately. I love to walk. I'd love to say that it's a great time of prayer and contemplation, but really ... it's not. I find it extra difficult to concentrate when I'm walking. My thoughts are everywhere! It's like my mind speeds up ... the thoughts are bouncing around a million miles a minute! I'm not sure why. It's odd to me. So ... the only time it's great for prayer or contemplation is when I talk/pray out loud ... which can get a little creepy for fellow walkers/joggers/bikers. He he he. So ... I try to only talk to myself when no one is around. But! It's always funny when someone comes around the bend when you don't expect it ... or a quiet runner "sneaks" up behind you ... or you just keep looking over your shoulder to make sure no one is coming. It's just hilarious, really. :)

But anyways ... walks are wonderful. Even though I don't usually get much prayer/deep thinking done ... it's peaceful ... and it really helps me clear my mind. I try to walk for at least an hour when I go for walks ... so by the time I'm done, I feel like all the millions of thoughts bouncin' around a million miles a minute are gone ... tired ... leaked out ... and I feel more relaxed and focused than when I started. :)

I often walk at the park nearest to my house ... but the Avon Town Hall Park is really pretty too. But for GoG 116, I went for a walk at the Plainfield Park (Hummel). And I found some trails and a side of the park I have never seen before. Awesome! It's my new favorite park to walk in. It was great to walk on the path under trees, near lakes, around bends ... did you know that there is beautiful lake behind Hummel Park? What? We have a lake in Hendricks County??? I was stoked!!!! And those simple joys in a walk through the park were my glimpse of grace that day.

GoG 115: The Habakkuk 2:3

Ha! These posts are never as short as I say they will be, huh? Oh well. I am long-winded by nature, and it will never end!!!!! :D

GoG 115: The Habakkuk 2:3

Habakkuk 2:3 says ....
"For the vision is yet for the appointed time;
It hastens toward the goal and it will not fail.
Though it tarries, wait for it;
For it will certainly come, it will not delay."

GoG 114: The Night of Grace

About three weeks ago, I was really struggling with my calling to SoZo. I was just feeling burned out and ineffective and full of doubts. Ugh. It was AWFUL! Thankfully, I decided to abound ahead of time, so no manner of doubt or worry or burn out I feel will keep me from getting back to my calling. :) Praise God for that! That's a glimpse of grace in and of itself, huh???!!! :)

GoG 114 came in two ways on the night of our last Common Ground of the school year. .... I was really bummin' out that Sunday .... whew. It was bad! And I got to Common Ground (which always boosts my spirits, by the way), and the entire night was a blessing. We had it at Pittsboro United Methodist Church ... the Pittsboro folks lead worship ... and oh my gosh ... it was one of the best worship services I've been to in months and months! God pulled me out of my pity party, my bummin' out, my focus on self ... and brought me directly into His presence. I was liftin' my hands and even hollerin' a bit (it was part of the worship ... "everyone" ... or at least the folks who didn't have an ego to stroke ;) .... were hollerin' a bit - it was a part of the worship)!!! It was great! I was so blessed! .... The second great glimpse of grace that night was a word of encouragement from my friend, Nathanael. Nathanael is the youth pastor at Hendricks Community Bible Church. And his encouragement couldn't have been more timely. We talked for several minutes, but the bottom line of our conversation was "Mical, you are gifted and capable of doing this" (the "this" being working with youth .... and more specifically, teaching/loving on the kids at Calvary). It was incredible! God really used him to touch my heart. I was entirely awed by God's grace that night ... He was just showering it on!!!!

GoG 113: The Emily Visit

I've never been more behind with my GoGs!!!! My project may be "ruined" ... but I'm gonna keep goin' even when I get super behind ... 'cause I'm still being blessed ... ha! Even though I had to either think super, super hard back to ... oh my word ... almost THREE weeks ago ... OR make up a glimpse of grace. Wow. Well, the next several posts will be brief ... but still grace. :)

GoG 113: The Emily Visit

The title says it all. Man. It's crazy. This GoG was way back around the time of Melissa's bridal shower ... the end of April. Whew!

My GoG was that Emily came to town for the weekend ... we hung out ... and even though we hadn't seen each other for a few weeks (when we're used to seeing each other 2-3 times a week!), it was like nothing had changed. And that's the mark of a truly intimate friendship - you can go away from each other for any amount of time, and nothing changes.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

50% Sanguine, 30% Choleric, 15% Melancholic, and 5% Phlegmatic

Well, it's official ... ha, it was probably official a long time ago ... I will NEVER be consistent with my blog posts!!!! I am, yet again, over a week behind with my GoGs. It is tough getting one in every single day! .... So ... to give y'all (and myself) a little break from the same kind of post ... I'm gonna finish a post I started a while ago ... here goes.

Quite a while ago, Judy Nilsen posted on her blog about the 4 Temperaments ... so you may already know about these ... but I'd like to take a look into them as well. Initially, I was just gonna take a look at the Sanguine ... 'cause I thought I was strictly that spunky little guy .... but after beginning to read another book about the temperaments, I think I've come to the conclusion that I am (roundabout) 50% Sanguine, 30% Choleric, 15% Melancholic, and 5% Phlegmatic. In case you don't know or remember what each of the temperaments are, read below .....

Phlegmatics are natural peacemakers. They are the quiet observers in the group, content to sit back and take one day at a time without getting their feathers ruffled. Phlegmatics get along with practically everybody. They need a sense of respect, feeling of worth, and emotional support. They do not lack for friends because they enjoy people and have a natural dry sense of humor. Being easygoing and content are great qualities, but when taken to the extreme, the phlegmatic can be seen as indecisive, lazy, and unmotivated. And under all that reserve, there is a hidden stubbornness.

Melancholics are thinkers. Many artists, poets, and musicians are melancholics. Their analytical minds also make them great in mathematic and engineering fields. Much more reserved than extroverts, melancholics prefer a quiet atmosphere and choose friends cautiously. They often exhibit a servant's heart from which other temperaments can learn. They have a need for a sense of stability, space, silence, and support. They usually find their greatest meaning in life through personal sacrifice. They seem to have a desire to make themselves suffer and will often choose a difficult life vocation involving great personal sacrifice. Once chosen, they are prone to be very thorough and persistent in their pursuit of it and are more than likely to accomplish great good. On the downside, melancholics can become moody and easily depressed. Perfectionist attitudes can also give way to criticism of self and others.

Cholerics are considered natural-born leaders. They are the ones who get things done - their way. Cholerics believe they are always right and know exactly the way something should be handled. They are great in an emergency because they make quick, correct judgments, but they can sometimes blow the wind out of an unsuspecting sanguine who is not as organized or as driven. From others, cholerics need to feel a sense of obedience, appreciation for accomplishments, and credit for a job well done. They thrive on activity; in fact, to him, "life is an activity." They do not need to be stimulated by their environment, but rather stimulate their environment with their endless ideas, plans, and ambitions. In the negative, cholerics are often considered too bossy, insensitive, or impatient.

Sanguines love to have fun. Put them in a room with people, and they have a great time. They are easy to get along with; people generally like them. Sanguines are very expressive, enthusiastic, and emotional; and they have a great sense of humor, are creative, and enjoy people. They need attention, affection, approval, and acceptance. They never lack for friends. Their naive, spontaneous, genial nature opens doors and hearts to them. They can genuinely feel the joys and sorrows of the person they meet and have the capacity to make him feel important, as though he were a very special friend. They enjoy people, do not like solitude, but are at their best surrounded by friends where they are the life of the party. Their noisy, blustering, friendly ways make them appear more confident than they really are, but their energy and lovable disposition get them by the rough spots of life. On the downside, they are usually considered scatterbrained or disorganized, not detail oriented, often gullible or naive, and seldom serious minded.

(Descriptions of each temperament taken from Focus on the Family's Women of Worth women's series of significance and Tim LaHaye's Spirit-Controlled Temperament)

Now ... I say50% Sanguine, 30% Choleric, 15% Melancholic, and 5% Phlegmatic because .....

~ Well ... just one conversation with me, and you can tell I'm mostly Sanguine! - Very spazzy, upbeat, and restless. ----- I love people; I love to have fun; I'm very expressive (another word for spazzy, in my book!), enthusiastic (passionate!), and emotional; I am compassionate (really take on and sympathize with the emotions of other people, especially, those I care about most; I'm pretty noisy and friendly and love to be the center of attention; I need approval ... I can't let go if someone doesn't like me or decides not to be my friend anymore; I'm gullible, creative in my own way, have a pretty goofy sense of humor, and people generally like me. :)

~ I didn't start thinking of myself as a choleric person until I talked to my mom and dad about my temperament recently. I've been pretty discouraged about my "spaztivity" ... and yes, I made of a new word. :) ...... I am fairly out there .... not toooo weird, I don't think ... ha! ;) ... But I am definitely my own person. I love what my dad said on Sunday night .... "Mical, you are your own person. There is not anyone even near to who you are ... and I mean that in the best way." Ha! It made me laugh pretty hard. But it's true. Sure, we're all different .... but Mical Masterson is just a super unique kind of person .... she thinks about things completely differently than just about everyone else on the planet! But back to choleric ... where did all of that come from? ... you might ask. I've been discouraged about my Sanguineness .... about who I am ... thinking that I'm "ruining" God's plans by being "this way." ..... But God has been confirming in my heart through various people (a complete stranger, even! You'll hear about him in one of my upcoming GoGs), books, and through His still, small voice .... that He CREATED ME "THIS WAY!!!!" He made me 50% Sanguine, 30% Choleric, 15% Melancholic, and 5% Phlegmatic (or whatever I truly am - I'm just taking a stab at this percentage thing)!!! He WANTS me "this way!!!!!" And He has a PURPOSE for me being "this way!!!!!!!" Isn't that amazing!!!!!!???

Ha! None of that really goes with Choleric, does it? I thought I was gonna bring it back, but I didn't. It was a valuable tangent though ... like all of my tangents are .... rriiigggghhtt .... hahaha! Okay ... well, I've got quite a bit of Choleric in me because ... I'm driven and opinionated and fairly independent. I am very passionate, and when I get an idea or a calling, I run with it - and run hard after it! I'm "always right" ... or so I think ... I have lots of soapboxes (so I'm opinionated) ... I've always been a leader, not likely to follow a crowd. I'm organized and have lots of ideas ... and I thrive on keeping busy - life is always more productive and more enjoyable and has more purpose when I'm busy doing something .... at times, it's just "busy work," but I think a lot of the time, I'm busy serving or being productive - overall, at least. :)

~ Melancholic - I'm a bit of an "artist" - music, creativity, and the like - at least. :) I strive to have a servant's heart ... I've been told I have one. I like to and often ponder on the deep issues of life and of my faith in Jesus. I also need my space at times. I LOVE people! I wouldn't be able to live without them .... and, almost always, I am more energized by being with people than by being alone. But from time to time, I need to get away and be by myself. I've gone on a 3-day camping trip to Turkey Run or taken a one-day mini-road trip to the Indiana Dunes or a hiking trip at a state park by myself to get away for some deep thinking and rejuvenation - away from the hustle-bustle of life and chaos and hard work of relationships. I've also chosen to work in youth ministry - which is a "career" deeply rooted in self-sacrifice .... and I pursue it consistently, with all I am. I also have perfectionist tendencies that make me criticize myself ... and even others sometimes ... but mostly myself.

~ And lastly, the phlegmatic personality .... my dad is very much this temperament ... but not me! Ha! It's the easy-going temperament. People with this personality don't worry about the little things ... they don't even worry about the big things. Whew! I WISH this was me! .... I am a natural peace-maker, and I don't lack for friends .... but other than that, I am far from "not getting ruffled."

It's been great looking into these temperaments on a deeper level. It's really helping me see myself in a new light .... helping me see that GOD, the Creator and Sustainer of the Universe, made me in a specific way, for a specific purpose, and He not only created me THIS specific way, but He WANTS me this specific way!!!! Amazingness!