A Story About Some (Or Two) of God’s Kids

I am a child of the King.  He adopted me, and his only birth Son is the perfect Knight in Shining Armor, although he didn’t look it on the outside when he was here on earth.  He most certainly does now.  Anyway, that makes me a princess.  (For sake of this post, I’m calling God’s children “royal,” smiley face.)  The unique thing about these “royals” is that they get to battle and fight, too.  So there are a ton of sir knights and ladies; AKA, princes and princesses.

Anyway, society has drawn out these perfect stories, and all these princesses are waiting for knights like Jesus, AKA, the only perfect knight in shining armor.  I find a problem with that.  Then there are a ton of awesome knights who come back from battle not as perfect nor as shining as we princesses dreamed of as children.

So, in 2011, I went on Summer Project with a bunch of other ladies and knights.  Actually, the ladies highly outnumbered the knights.  But that’s okay.  We got to learn about the Perfect Knight and grow in him and even advance the kingdom some from where we were at in Milwaukee, WI.  Anyway, I like snail mail letters.  So I wrote to all my fellow warriors I had grown close to that summer.  And then some ended up staying in closer contact.  And this one knight and I began writing letters to each other.  In our letters, we spoke of God’s word and his work in our lives.  We shared what was happening in our lives and prayer requests.

Fast forward to the summer of 2013.  Yep, that’s when Sir Wile E. Coyote of Wisconsin and me started dating.  We’ve seen each other twice in person since then, have Skyped, emailed, texted, talked on the phone, whatevs.  And during the week, we mostly rely on email because we’re both real busy.  But after all those letters over the previous two years?  We kind of developed a “form” to the letters: Scripture, talk about pointed out scripture, talk about life/ask about life, share prayer requests/ask questions.  I pretty much use this form for any letters I write now.  Hurriedly written emails don’t really have a form.  But that’s okay.  I write how I talk whenever I write.  Sir Coyote’s emails are formal, and I like them.  He’s also written me poetry.  I’m a sucker for poetry.  But he knew that.  Anyhoo, our emails are like continued conversation.  Our conversations still contain what our letters did: we talk about Scripture: what we’ve read in the Word lately or what God’s been showing us through other things in life.  We even read the Word together over Skype or when we do get to see each other in person.  We talk about life: we’ve been getting to know each other better, even though we can’t physically be with each other, it’s been helping our communication, probably.  And prayer: We share prayer requests all the time, and whenever we talk with each other, we pray together.

This was that one post I was talking about yesterday that talked more on the subject, I think.  I started praying in 2012, probably, that when I got into a relationship, it would be a light Christ would shine through.  Christ is all around both of us all the time.  When we’re by ourselves and when we’re together, Christ is there, in, and around us both.  I think it was each other’s faith that made our heads turn in the first place, smiley face.  But how can our relationship be a light if we keep it to ourselves?  Also, I’m too much of a chatterbox to keep it to myself.  (I’m an introverted chatterbox.  Bet you didn’t know they existed.)

Anyway, I’ll end this totally sappy post by saying that the battered knight this homely princess is dating rocks my socks off.  (Which is probably why I’m currently barefoot.)



A Radical Vision

And then the images flashed before me:

Jesus, the Son of God, holding out his arms, waiting for me with a hug full of love.

God the Father, the Creator of the universe, holding me, his precious child, and gazing into my eyes, telling me so.

The Holy Spirit, who is in us all, surrounding me and filling me with peace.

Then I saw myself holding onto a rope above a vast of water.  There stood Jesus, holding the rope above me.  I grew tired.  Finally, I scurried up the rope and embraced my Savior.  “You don’t need to strive anymore,” he told me.  “What will you give me instead?”  I asked.  “Do you even have to ask?  You are here, in my arms.”  And he smiled at me.

I saw my fear, especially that of the future and of what MS could do to me.  I nailed it on the cross, with Jesus, the sacrifice and advocate of all.  I asked him what he would give me to hold onto instead.  And he gave me hope.

I saw my grandpa, crying on his knees because he lost his love, his wife of so many years.  “Be patient,” I heard.  “Wait for this.”  And the Lord promised to help me with patience.

I asked God for the healing of my body, and he has already shown me truth to beset the lies I was believing.  I remember an earlier image, one of Jesus and I fighting side by side against the enemy who so diligently tried to take control over my body’s health.  “I will never leave you,” my Jesus said to me.  And so I will keep fighting.  I will keep praying.  And I will keep in the sweet fellowship of the Spirit forever.

I’m like, “Procrastinating?”

Once upon a time, I was like, “Dude, I should write a relevant blog post.”  (Hint: that was when I decided to write this.)  But then I’m like, “Say, Buddy, I don’t know what to write!”  And then I’m like, “Hey, Pal, just write what’s on your mind!”  But then I’m like, “Comrade, you’ve been looking up synonyms for ‘dude’ for five minutes now and probably could have spent better use of that time looking up something interesting to write about.”  After but a moment of pause, I’m like (in a British accent), “Chum.  What is up.”  (Switch to inner-city, black populations accent.)  “Yo, Sista!  Where you be kickin’ it after class?”  (Switch to pirate talk) “Aye, I be headin’ down to get me some coffee and be with me Jesus!”  (Switch to Anna’s accent, if you think I have one) “Now, I’m just confused.”  (Mom tone) “What is going on here?”  (Anna’s shrinking back tone) “Um, nothing?”

This is what happens when I want to write something but don’t know what.  You get a plethora of creative accents and me talking to myself in my dorm room as I type and laugh to myself.  Oh, boy.  I would like to give a shoutout to my accomplice.  My aid.  My sidekick.  Thesorus.com.

On a more update-like note, I am still pretty excited about life in general except for the book currently sitting in front of my desk, telling me, “Anna, you have a Lit Circle tomorrow and 30 pages left.  What are you DOING?”  And I’m like, “Well, I’m having conversations in my head that stem from more, human like characters instead of YOU.”  And it’s like, “Well, there are characters in HERE that are actual people.”  And I’m like, “Well, I’M a real person.  And I KNOW me.  I don’t know these people.”  And it’s like (in a warning/taunting/teasing tone), “Anna!  You git your homework done NOW!”  And I’m like, “Fine.  But let me post this first, okay?”  And then it’s like, “You have until the count of three to open the book and start reading.”  But since I am giving the book its words, it won’t get to three until I post this.  Mwahaha.

Smiling mischievously, Anna =)^2

The Story (A Christmas Blog)

This is a video that helped me chill during finals week (and yes, I did watch this movie a few nights later):

“It is finished.”  Yep, I’m DONE WITH FINALS!  That’s the first thing that popped into my head the other day.  I was like, “When I’m done, it’ll be finished.  Like when Jesus was dying on the cross and we didn’t have to worry about our sins anymore, but more like when I’m done with the semester and I’ve done all I can so therefore I’m just waiting for my grades back.  But wait.  It’s not quite the same.”  So, thinking about Christmas and everything…

Yeah, it’s TIME to be thinking about Christmas.  The Christmas STORY, not the Americanized fairytale, good moral be-nice-to-everyone type of fictional story.  The STORY that can’t be told better by anyone else!  (I know people have interpreted the story and retold it, but it happened once and won’t again.)  The reason Jesus came was so he COULD utter the words, “It is finished.”  DO YOU REALIZE WHAT THAT MEANS!?  It is finished, done, paid for.  When the judge holds up a list of all the sins you have ever committed (for they’re all the same in his book, and there are more than you could imagine—no amount of good deeds cancel them out), your verdict is hell.  Departure from God forever.  But THEN, Jesus comes in the room.  He’s like, “Judge, look at my list.  What is my verdict?”  And the judge is like “Well, it’s perfect.  There ARE no sins here.  Therefore, your verdict is eternity in paradise with me.”  And Jesus turns to you and is like, “Wanna trade?”  WHOA BESSY!  That’s what happens next chapter of the story.  We always celebrate OUR birthdays; they are a day honoring us for us.  Christmas isn’t just a DAY.  Yes, it is a federal holiday we set aside, special for remembering great events.  But don’t you want to live everyday honoring Jesus?  I know I do, real bad.

Okay, so this has turned into a little tangent.  But what blogs of mine don’t in some way?  So, I’m at home now (HOME!), so I wish you all a merry Christmas!

Until later, Anna =)^2 (Smiling Lots)

Unboring, Action-Packed Blog, Take Two

So.  I wrote this story near the time I wrote “take one” of my unboring action-packed blogs.  I laughed when I re-read it, so I figured I’d put it on here to see what you guys think?  I write for entertainment sometimes, like this time, and it has no connection to reality [disclaimer].  I really don’t know sometimes, but here you go.


Once upon a time, a prince was trapped in a tower.  Though he was really hot and had a six-pack that would make any common man cry, he was forbidden to leave his tower for an unknown reason.  The myth of his existence was altered by the Brothers Grimm and Disney into a girl, ‘cuz people liked to write about girls in distress.  Too bad a girl who isn’t in distress is writing this tale.  So, an awesome prince is trapped in a tower.

Meanwhile, two young ladies are flying kites and one gets away.  Both run and try to see if they have any hope of catching the kite.  They’re in the middle of the prairie, per say, so the tallest thing anywhere is a grove.  So, they hopped on a couple of 4-wheelers to see if the kite would land or if it was gone forever.  They finally found the kite caught in the tree on the outside of a grove.  It was weird—they didn’t know the person who lived there.  They knew all of their other neighbors.  But the resident of this farm was quiet.

“Yeah, but how are we supposed to get TO the tree?” one of the girls asked.

“Let’s see if the guy who lives here has a ladder or something,” said the other girl.

“Okay.”  So they moved beyond the grove and found…THE TOWER (duh, duh, DUH!).  It looked empty.  It was totally freaky, too.

“Who builds a stone tower in the middle of the Midwest?” asked the first girl.

“Good question,” said the other.  “Let’s explore!”

“Are you sure that’s a good idea?” asked the first girl.  But the other was already on her way.

[messing around scene]

–      Conclusion: they find a hidden door.

“Let’s go in!” said the second girl who has been talking second so far until now when she talked first.

“But it’s dark and freaky,” said the other.

“Chicken,” said the second girl, who is now the first as she entered the dark tower.  “There’s a staircase!”

“I’m staying here,” said the first girl who is now the second.

“Suit yourself,” called the FIRST girl as she started to climb.

MEANWHILE, in the tower, the extremely attractive, trapped young man had been hearing things.  Just then, there was a knock at his door.  Could this indeed be his rescuer?  Indeed, it was.  When he opened the door with his killer-, super-hot-smile, the one that showed his incredibly white and perfect teeth, girl number one’s scream was stopped as she fainted.

And they lived happily ever after in the stone tower in the middle of the Midwest.

Manny the Monkey: A Sentance-at-a-Time Story

Once there was a monkey.  He was 12 years old, yet still relatively agile, regardless of his elevated number of years. One day he decided that he wanted to go on adventure. So he go.  He venture far and wide in search of world-renown large banana.  He found that it was located deep in the jungle of the Congo.  “Me find now!” he said gruffly.  Girding his loins and selecting his sharpest mini-machete, Manny the Monkey dove into the chlorophyll abyse.  As he go deeper into jungle he run into the giant anacondas of legend.  “Bring it,” the enemy hissed and Manny prepared for a battle scene (cue).  – – Editor’s Note – – This story has been altered to make it acceptable for G-rated audiences, and therefore the following battle scene has been adjusted to decrease the overall violence rating.  Ha just kidding who cares about ratings!  The monkeys gathered a huge army and charged the anacondas with spears.  Sum up: the anacondas were pulverized, diced up, and guts were everywhere.  The monkeys took hostages, sold them through the Black Market to snake charmers around the world, and returned to the Congo to continue their hunt a little—I mean much—richer.  When they found the giant banana trees they found that a battalion of gorillas was there ready to defend them (battle was imminent).  So basically…the gorillas were all like, “Son!  I’m so glad you returned!  You were lost and now you are found!  You died and are alive again!”  And Manny’s like “W-T-” and then everyone cheered so you couldn’t hear the rest.  The gorillas served their “family” a giant feast, yet Manny remained on the defensive, not trusting the gorillas hospitality…his guardedness was wise, because during the second course, the gorillas jumped on the monkeys, forcing their little faces into the soup and drowning them in the pre-entrée dish.  Little did the gorillas know that the monkeys were really faking it and drew their swords to slit the throats of the gorillas behind them. Blood oozed out as their jujubes continued pumping blood, and their throats gasped for breath.  The monkeys grabbed some of the bloody large bananas from the trees, and, though tired, started eating (finally).

They say that when you eat the blood of your own kind, you never go back…this is, of course, because the bacteria A.auregeaes begins to thrive in your mouth because of the blood ingestion, causing a systemic infection that goes straight to the brain and rapidly takes over the Central Nervous System.  So in layman terms the bacteria turned the monkeys into ravenous blood-thirsty zombies.  After finishing the rest of the gorilla blood (yes, licking every leaf and blade of grass), they went on the hunt for more.  Manny, knowing that they would soon turn on themselves, called Miss Pepper Potts, his right-hand-gal, to come and pick him up by helicopter so that he could return home with the Large Banana seeds and plant his own banana garden.  In a very anticlimactic turn of events Miss Pepper Potts was able to get all the monkeys back safely with the bananas and gave them zombie medication.  And as Christ raised us all from the dead, Miss Pepper Potts delivered the grace needed to save these monkeys who had died to the world.  They were treated with a cephalosporin derivative and returned to their homeland safe and sound…yet miles away, Manny sat on his crazily tech-enhanced basement, speculating where his next adventure would take him. 

By: Anna, Jill, and Bryan

-written in the car on the way to Kalahari, the end-of-project retreat-

The Summer: A Glance Back

So tonight, during my date night with Jesus, I went back and skimmed through my journal and tried to accumulate all that I’ve learned this summer into smaller forms.  I took notes, but this pretty much just led to more conversation.  So God’s like, “Hey, Anna, remember all that I’ve taught you this summer?  All I’ve shown you?  I would think you would have stopped worrying about this-and-that so much.  But I’m still here, for when you’re ready to talk about it again.”  Looking back in my journal I see how God has answered prayers and how he’s showed me the same things, in different forms, just to get his point across.  Just to make sure I’m gonna see this neon sign he’s put in front of my face.  ‘Cuz I don’t, always.  I see themes: he has taught me about relationships.  He has recalled me to what has affected me in the past, some of why I act the way I do, and he has brought my attention to what I am doing NOW.  Conflict?  I usually avoid it.  But that’s not healthy for a relationship of any kind.  So I’ve been working a lot on that.  And also, being a girl, I handed God over the word “boyfriend,” letting him take care of who and when.  I don’t need to worry about that or be distracted from my relationship with the Lord!  And our relationship has grown, as well.  “Jesus, I love that I have this relationship with you, and that you love it, too!  I keep finding out and learning more about you, AND I keep finding things brought to my attention that I need to surrender to you” (7-13).  So, I’ve given him the reigns of all my relationships.  And I keep giving them back, ‘cuz I keep taking them on accident.  I don’t need anything else in the way of my relationship with Christ, the most important relationship EVER!

And I think that the other major theme is somewhat obvious.  Control.  Ugh, I hate it.  But I have recognized it as an iceberg that manifests itself however it wants to.  I just still really hate it.  But, I’ve been releasing that one, as well—S-L-O-W-L-Y.  That one is a little bit easier to snatch up the reigns, and I have to be aware and keep giving them back, many times throughout the day.  “I WILL surrender, dang it” (6-22)!  Many times.  I don’t always catch it, either.  Which isn’t good.  But I have officially trusted God with everything—MS, being the biggie there; the FUTURE (which is hard for me, but I’m learning), and…I think that encompasses all of it, really.  The future is one that covers a lot of territory, unfortunately.  But God, I TRUST YOU.  (He’s reading this, too.)

Oh, and this is a subcategory, but I was really excited when I read this in my journal, ‘cuz it, like, helped my feel better about the future thing.  “I feel like I’m being called to be involved in the life of a struggling family, a struggling man or woman.  To listen, to have a relationship with” (6-13)!  And guess what?  God suggested to me, like, a week or two ago, that I could reach out to the parents of kids that I do music therapy with!  I have no idea what that will look like, but I was super excited when that thought entered my head.  ‘Cuz how awesome would that be!?

This last week, God has laid prayer on my heart.  And article I read said that prayer always preceded dramatic events, such as a revival.  So, I’ve been praying a lot over this last week, typically in list form in my journal.  One of my prayers is, indeed, for a revival.  That would be SWEEEEEET!  How awesome would it be if a city like Milwaukee, the most segregated city in the US, was suddenly one that REFLECTED CHRIST AND HIS LOVE!?  How awesome would it be if there was a revival at Augie, and all of the students were no longer “lukewarm Christians” if they were even that much, but ON FIRE FOR CHRIST!?  How awesome would it be if a stranger could walk through Cottonwood and think, “Wow, CHRIST IS PROMINENT in this place!?”  I ask that you all join me, as well.  And, if you have another place on your heart, let me know, and I’ll join you in praying for it!

God has changed me this summer, and I’m not even all the way done with it yet!  All I know is that I am SO EXCITED for Christ, and I want to praise him and glorify him with my very being!  All I want to do is to live for HIM!!!!!

SMILING so hard my cheeks are starting to hurt (in a good way), Anna =)^2

Week Three, Part Three (Friday)

FRIDAY!  So….again, a lot of things happened.  Worthy of a post, which I am growing  rather fond of doing.  PLUS, I took tons of pictures today so YOU’RE IN LUCK if you want to keep up on what I’m a-doin.

Today was our last day at L&T, and we had a CARWASH!  It was so much fun, and time just seemed to FLY by!  I had the hose, and would rinse the cars before and after their being washed by Jenny & Rachel.  Then, they were dried and we moved on to the next car waiting.  The estimate is that we washed about 8 or 9 cars from 10-noon.  Chelsea, Bryan, and Meg did a  couple of different things, helping to dry, holding the sign at the entrance of L&T’s parking lot, or just talking to the drivers as they waited for us to finish washing.

At 6 is when awesomeness began.  Dressed in our clashy and mis-matchy outfits, we went mini-golfing!  Cue pictures.

I am proud to say my score was a 57, even though it was the highest by 10.  David got 47, Jen got 46, and Erick got 42.  It was a fun day!

You can be praying for Liberty and Truth Ministries, as we depart from working with them after two weeks.  I learned so much from Pastor Seay, and I was so blessed to talk with Regina!  Next week, we will be at New Beginnings for 4 days.  You can be praying for that, as well!  This weekend we are planning a few different outreaches and another social, and I’m sure you’ll be hearing something about that in the near future.

Thank you ALL for your support and for taking time out to read about my adventures here during Summer in the City, Milwaukee Summer Project!  My heart goes out to all of you!

Smiling sparkily, Anna

Week Three, Part Two (Wednesday)

“I want to be with you, and you with me.”  This is what God told me last night.  And I DO just want to be with him!  I surrendered more of my crap, sins that were brought to my attention as I sat during circle at HOV.  And I wrote down Ephesians 1:3-14, verse by verse (‘cuz that is a LOT of info jam-packed into a little space.  I learned so much!  And I continue to learn!

So this morning, Noel and I left at 7 for my 8am appointment in Westbend.  We would have been fine on time, but as it turns out, BOTH of us are kinda bad at directions.  So, even though Dr. Geroulis had another appointment at 8:30, he saw me at 8:26 when I got to his office (after registration, which took awhile longer ‘cuz I was a new patient there).  He told me how to get to the Outpatient Infusion Center, which is in a different building.  “You can’t miss it,” he told me.  “Watch me,” I thought.  And yes, Noel and I couldn’t remember which direction we were told to turn, causing us to go in the opposite direction yet again.  However, we realized it  and turned around, not making me as late as I was for my previous appointment.  As it turned out, because I had talked to a number of nurses there, they had FOUGHT over who would give me my Tysabri infusion.  I met a total of three today.  Now THAT’S something to smile about!

This afternoon, Noel and I went sharing at the beach using Salarium—it was my first time trying out this type of reaching out to people.  And I pretty much love it.  Praise God, I would call it a success.  No, nobody prayed to receive Christ today, but I shared with SEVEN people today!  AND nobody said “no” to taking the picture survey!  I like it better ‘cuz I could be relational and find out more about the PERSON, sharing parts or allof the gospel where it was needed.  “Finding the cracks in people’s lives and filling it with the gospel,” Noel said, as it had been described to her.  God filled me up, and I actually ended up sharing my gospel bracelet with a woman who claimed she was an atheist.  There were four teenagers playing at the edge of the water, and Noel’s like, “Should I ask them to come over?” And I’m like, “Paul shared with groups of people,” so she went to get them.  As I think about it now, I could have shared the full gospel with them, as well.  I pray for them, though!  You can pray too!  Terrence, Huan, Joanne, and the group of high schoolers, Jacob, Caitlin, Ashley, and Nick.

Tonight, the guys made the girls supper.  They went ALL OUT.  It was so cute!  They had table cloths, place cards, and the table all set, as well as cards for each of us at our places.  The cards were full of personalized compliments that were SO SWEET!  Each girl was escorted to her place, and the guys were the servers for the eavening.  They told us to clap our hands twice if we needed anything, and it was quite amusing to see a table of guys perk up and look up to see who was clapping for something.  In the case, the place, the guy would come and ask sophistically what the girl needed.  It was a marvelous evening, full of chivalry and gentlemanly kindness.  So sweet!

Before this update gets too long, I’m gonna post.  Maybe many short updates are better than a long one?  You tell me!

Smiling a lot, Anna =)

Since My Last Update….

So, I’ve been kinda typing into a word document when I’ve had free time over the last couple of days.  I finished tonight after my date with the Lord, so that’s why that one happens to be in more detail than the others, I guess.  So I invite you to find out some of the general things I’ve been doing, and some of the depths of my heart conversations with the Lord.

Tuesday: Soul to Soul Night.

Our Action Group shared testimonies with each.  My action group consists of Meg, Ashley, Ariel, and me, as well as our leaders Noel and Courtney.  We went to Ian’s Pizza (which was awesome, cuz Ariel got us a free slice of pizza and they have awesome food in the first place) and then to Noel’s place to share our stories.  We were surprisingly the first group done.  Which meant we could hang out with each other and nobody else was even on the floor yet.  Which was fun, I guess.  And then another group came (my roommate’s group) and needed to finish up so they were in our room until 11-11:30.  Only two of us cried, and one teared up.  It was a good night, though.  We were real with each other right away, which has only strengthened our exponentially growing friendships.  I love hearing people’s stories, and my heart aches for those who don’t have a family of believers as I do.  I am so blessed!

Wednesday: Ministry Site Tour

Okay, so going around and seeing what all these places are already doing for the people in the city?  So encouraging!  And then we get to come in and assist and boost the confidence of these wonderful people!  I am so excited to see what God is gonna do!

Thursday: Break out into groups/Date Night with Jesus

Team One with Bryan, Chelsea, Meg, Jenny, Rachel, and me.  We will be going to four different churches/ministries to help out over the next seven weeks. Again, so excited to see what God is gonna do!

I call it “Date Night With Jesus” because it really is me and the Lord just getting to know each other.  Truer than in any other kind of relationship, Jesus likes to reveal more that I didn’t know about myself, and helps me grow.  He is awesome, and I am so glad that I have an intimate relationship with my Lord!  Earlier this week, I asked God to break my heart for the people of Milwaukee.  I guess I kind of had a tugging at my heart before, but tonight I realized I totally have a heart for nonbelievers everywhere, whether they are willing to admit it or not!  Ya’ll need Jesus.  Just sayin’ it.  My heart aches for those told of in Colossians 2:20, “If with Christ you died to the elemental spirits of the universe, why do you live as if you still belonged to the world?”  Which is everyone.  The world likes to encourage my struggles with worry and control, my mind not on things that are above, but are here on this earth.  How does that change?  Jesus.  I don’t know how to relate to everyone that giving everything up to God feels a whole lot freer than struggling and hanging on to your burdens.  I don’t know how to tell everyone I see that a relationship with Christ is the best thing in this universe and that ain’t no lie.  Without smothering them, of course.  That’s just not me.  So, I have given God all of me, and told him to use me where he needs me.  I am working on writing my testimony in such a way that it can be told to all people, whether they believe or not.  God gave me the testimony I have.  Everything I think, do, or say, I have decided to give it all to God’s glory.  That is what I am doing here.  That is what I am supposed to do.  That is why I am here.  For God’s glory!  So I give all praise to him!  Amen.

Until next time!  Smiling always, Anna