tonight in bible study we looked at exodus 4.
things that really stood out to me-
moses was reluctant.
he didn't believe God had picked the right guy.
he didn't believe God could provide for what he had asked him to do.
he was scared.
God didn't give up on him.
God didn't just give him what he needed to do what he had asked moses to do. he gave him more than he needed-signs, wonders, miracles, even his brother to speak for him.
what an encouragement it was to read this story tonight.
to know that God doesn't give up on me.
to know that i'm not the only one doubting that God could provide for what he is asking of me.
to know that God has amazing and wonderful plans for me.
to know that when i seek him, he will be found.
"for i know the plans I have for you," declares the LORD, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. then you will call upon me and come and pray to me, and i will listen to you. you will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart." -jeremiah 29:11-13
Thursday, January 31, 2008
tonight in bible study we looked at exodus 4.
Posted by alicat at 1/31/2008
Tuesday, January 29, 2008
"blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted." -matthew 5:4
the last few days have been heavy. yesterday i sat through a two-hour class about violence and abuse. listening to the stories and hearing the hurt, pain and despair in the lives of these people broke my heart a little.
today was similar. although it wasn't quite as intense as the class period the day before, i felt deep sorrow for several of my patients today. knowing their stories stirs my heart to compassion.
i read an article today which talked about the importance of mourning. our hearts are supposed to break for the things that break God's heart. it was also a good reminder of what loving my neighbor means.
listening with genuine concern for others
helping to meet their needs when i am able
being flexible in order to show kindness
i may feel like i can't make much a difference some days, but all he asks is that i obey moment by moment.
keep my heart tender, lord.
Posted by alicat at 1/29/2008
Sunday, January 27, 2008
today i was thinking about the blessing of technology.
years ago, when you lived hundreds of miles away from people, you had to rely on communication through written letters. news could take weeks to reach the other person, and there was only the imagining of the sound of their voice.
even though i'm separated by many miles from people i love in all different directions, i have the gift of hearing their voice and talking to them.
dear ones who i talked to this weekend-
while it doesn't compare with the tight squeeze of their hugs, i am thankful to enjoy the benefits of some of our modern technology.
Posted by alicat at 1/27/2008
Saturday, January 26, 2008
on wednesday, i was tired after two days of clinicals in a row. i asked God to give me the energy to stay awake for staff meeting, especially since i was hosting. =) but he gave me more than just the energy to stay awake. he gave me hugs and laughter and stories and smiles.
Posted by alicat at 1/26/2008
Wednesday, January 23, 2008
yesterday i had a conversation with a dear friend and staffie...
she was talking about how we shouldn't feel like we need to apologize for the things God is leading us through. it may be different from what others are doing. it may feel strange. it may be the complete opposite of what is natural or comfortable to us. but if we are obeying God, we shouldn't have to apologize for what God has called us into.
here are the three things that God is leading me through right now. as hard as they can each be at times, i am also able to see the blessing and reward of my obedience and trust (or at least attempts at!) in these areas-
1) nursing school
2) res. life
praise God for his strong hand around my trembling one. praise God for his reassurance. praise God for his marvelous and astounding plans for my life. and praise God for growing me and stretching me in spite of my complaints and lack of trust.
Posted by alicat at 1/23/2008
Tuesday, January 22, 2008
the nurses on the unit of our mental health rotation seem to take great pleasure in watching over us...and calling us 'nurselets.' i think they mean it endearingly. =)
things i learned today-according some of the patients of the day...
nursing is a great profession. you are almost guaranteed that you won't have to worry about being shot every day you got to work-well, most of the time anyway.
nurses know everything.
nurses know nothing.
there will be a civil war within our country in the next five years. and the feds will win, of course.
germs only exist in the afternoon, which is why it is necessary to wear gloves then.
all jean jackets are exactly the same. (despite the fact that mine had no pockets and was a different color than erica's)
when you hear voices, you should just think of them as advisors.
what a day. =) i felt much more at peace today than last week. as i write down some of these crazy things, i can only laugh at the many more that i could put.
"i dearly love to laugh."
i'm sure there will be plenty of laughter (suppressed and actual) tomorrow!
Posted by alicat at 1/22/2008
yesterday cherie and i went for a walk in the sunshine-which was lovely, except that the shadowy parts of our path were quite cold. and by the end of it, our faces and hands were figuratively frozen.
today was quite similar. in the limited time i spent outside, i was impressed by the bitter cold.
when i look outside from my cozy apartment, the sun invites me to play in its rays.
but i am not deceived.
it may look like spring, but it is most assuredly january.
Posted by alicat at 1/22/2008
Monday, January 21, 2008
“sunshine is delicious, rain is refreshing, wind braces us up, snow is exhilarating; there is really no such thing as bad weather, only different kinds of good weather.” -john ruskin
on saturday, i believe i experienced every kind of good weather as my room-mates and i took a trip to the snow for a bit of tubing fun.
it was magical.
trees covered in snow may be one of my favorite sights.
i loved flying through the air
falling over into the snow
building our snowman
catching snowflakes on my tongue
Posted by alicat at 1/21/2008
Friday, January 18, 2008
one of the questions i had to answer on the application was what i thought one of the most challenging parts of res. life was. i think part of the difficulty is found in the unseen. my plans do not have the desired result. few or none make an appearance at an event. yet, there are the unexpected things which are seen. and those help me to press on when the results are unseen.
yesterday i made plans to visit taylor, only to learn that she was absent from school for the day.
during the day, jodi and i planned for how the bible study would look for this new semester, only to have none show up.
i must confess i was a little disappointed.
and just as i was beginning to feel sorry for myself today for my "lack of impact" as i saw it, Jesus brought to my mind this verse to offer me some encouragement. he also reminded me of the opportunities he had given to me.
he had given me the chance to laugh over silliness with my dear room-mates.
he had given me doors to unlock. a highly improbable number of people were locked out yesterday. while i sometimes felt this was an interruption, he showed me that these were opportunities to show his grace.
he had given me the chance to encourage. i was able to talk with aunt judy today, with plans to call again soon.
he had given me a couch to share. this afternoon, kaitlin and i snuggled while watching miss potter. when she was prepared to leave in order to nap at home, i invited her to stay and nap. after pillow talk, we both slept. i hope her body and spirit felt as refreshed as mine.
although it is well and good to see the results of one's efforts, i suppose the most important thing is one's willing heart. lord, help me to be content to rest in you when i can not see my impact. keep my heart willing to do whatever it is you ask of me, whether things go the way i may anticipate or not.
Posted by alicat at 1/18/2008
Wednesday, January 16, 2008
two thoughts before my long day comes to an end-
1) going to australia will be amazing.
2) i love my staff.
no matter how hard the past few days have been
no matter how tired my body is
the knowing that i am loved and
that i have adventures before me is quite nice.
Posted by alicat at 1/16/2008
as i worked with addicts today, i felt a great deal of sadness.
lives put on hold.
jobs given up.
yet at the same time, there was hope.
although there were some who didn't seem to want to change, there were many who wanted help-who wanted to be well. and that's why they were there.
“when Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, ‘do you want to get well?’ john 5:6
Posted by alicat at 1/16/2008
Tuesday, January 15, 2008
"i have a theory about this place. no matter who you are when you enter the doors, nurse or patient, i'm pretty sure we all leave crazy." -one of my patients of the day
today was my first actual day at my mental health clinical site. i wasn't too nervous until i actually got on the floor.
apparently because of a miscommunication, we weren't allowed to be in
a group of 5, so i was separated from jodi, and placed in a group with two other classmates, which ended up working out well. the second floor i was placed on seemed to be more structured, but i think that was because of the types of people on the
floor (more volatile). today was quite interesting. i never knew
murderers and sexual predators could be so nice. =) seriously
though-after hearing about all the crimes that had been committed by
the patients i saw today, it was hard to match the crimes with the
people that were right in front of me. i don't think i've ever
experienced anything quite like it. it may sound scary but i feel like i know how to establish my boundaries well and i'm never alone with any patients. i always have a nurse or classmate
i think what feels the most weird is not to have an agenda or checklist of things to
accomplish. time on the med-surg floor goes at a much faster pace. when i look back at my day, besides meeting the staff, all i really did was talk to people and play the game sorry today.
i also got a good look at my own assumptions and ideas, even though i felt as though i came today free of them. some of my patients were merely in the wrong place at the wrong time. something as simple as a car accident, a head injury, not having the mental capacity to have the judgment to pick good friends-these truly gave me compassion for these people. even the ones who have done horrible crimes often seem to have been abused themselves. abuse shouldn't be an excuse to abuse others, but as the staff said, these people are truly sick. their bodies may appear fine, but their minds are ill.
flat pieces of paper are easier to fear or even hate than real people. when talking with patients i knew that i could be talking to a murderer, but at the same time, i was talking to a person-an unwell person.
it feels like a strange gift-one that i don't think i would have ever asked for or even wanted. but here it is...
Posted by alicat at 1/15/2008
Sunday, January 13, 2008
things i love about today-
the sight of:
waking up to find an e-mail from my mommy in my inbox
my application COMPLETED!
new fish swimming in the tank (i've named them in my head (phinneas, demetrius and julia) so jodi better name them soon or i may not be able to call them anything else!)
the smell of:
gluten free cookies baking
my new cucumber & green tea shampoo
candy cane lane tea brewing
the sound of:
the enchanted soundtrack
my grandparents' voices, all the way from CA to OR
worship to our God
the taste of:
delicious citrus fruit
creamy rice pudding (made without eggs!)
the touch of:
my soft off-white sweater
my cozy covers
Posted by alicat at 1/13/2008
Friday, January 11, 2008
"aslan's instructions always work." -puddleglum, the silver chair
sometimes i wish that aslan's instructions always made sense
or always fit into my plans
or always had easy steps to follow
but aslan isn't a tame lion.
however, his instructions always work.
i'm filling out this form and i'm scared.
i don't know what is going to happen next.
i know i may even be giving up some dear things.
but i know that i am obeying aslan's instructions.
what happens next is up to him.
Posted by alicat at 1/11/2008
Wednesday, January 9, 2008
school has definitely started.
no gradual easing into the workload.
reading chapters and chapters.
staring at a computer screen.
who said you should be happy? do your work. -colette
not to say that the past few days haven't had plenty of blessings. they have...
but the work has begun.
Posted by alicat at 1/09/2008
Tuesday, January 8, 2008
Monday, January 7, 2008
while i wasn't thrilled about starting classes early this morning, i asked God to help me find things to rejoice in today.
and what a wonder-he did!
some of the blessings of today-
wearing my cute plaid jumper
ribbons in my hair
feeling excitement about the semester
banana nut muffins
reading a love story as part of my bible reading for the day
walking to class with jodi
smiles and hugs with nursing students after 3 weeks apart
taking my computer out of my sleeve
meeting sophomore nursing students
all my textbooks coming in the mail
seeing friends at the mailroom
a cozy nap under piles of blankets
reading and laughing over the first two chapters of the hobbit while i ate lunch
thinking about australia
martha on my couch
planning room-mate dinner
e-mails and facebook messages
listening to sara groves
key reports with kyle
bryan's good-bye party
sitting by rob during catch phrase
and preparing my first meal in my new crockpot:
yay for soup tomorrow!
Posted by alicat at 1/07/2008
Saturday, January 5, 2008
usually my excitement for getting back to school helps to counter any sadness that i might feel about leaving my family.
but not today.
the raindrops on the windshield seemed to match my tears.
maybe its the anticipation of another exceptionally challenging semester
maybe its my reluctance to be obedient to all that i know God is calling me to in the days ahead
or maybe its just that i love my family so much that my heart hurts when i have to drive away.
summer can't come soon enough.
but even as i feel reluctant for the start of this new semester, i feel some hope.
i may be reluctant, but i am confident as i close my eyes for just a second while i hold His hand tight.
Posted by alicat at 1/05/2008
Wednesday, January 2, 2008
one of the best parts of break was seeing lucy.
having my christmas present delivered to cheer me when i felt sick.
chili and cornbread.
snuggling and watching movies.
tea from a quart jar.
Posted by alicat at 1/02/2008
Tuesday, January 1, 2008
this past week i watched amazing grace for the first time. although i'd already known about william wilberforce (thanks to giving and listening to oral reports from 3rd to 8th grade) this movie made quite an impression on me. among other things, it reminded me of what i want to do with my life-
i want to do whatever God asks of me-
whether it makes sense or not
whether it takes all i have or not
whether it takes all of my life to do or only a short time
whether i see the results or only have to trust
i know this is much easier said than done.
i probably haven't even begun to imagine what God has in store for me.
but in the meantime, i'll commit this new year to him.
praise God for the examples of godly men and women who obeyed even in adversity.
quiet heroes in a loud tumultuous world.
as a new year begins, that it is what i want to strive toward.
being a quiet hero in whatever circumstances God leads me into.
Posted by alicat at 1/01/2008
a new year usually means there's at least some notion of resolutions-some kind of hope that this year will be different.
but along with these resolutions is the assumption that i am the one who is solely responsible for these changes. and if that isn't enough pressure, one little mess up or mistake and its all over! no hope of getting in shape if i miss a day exercising. a resolution seems to instantly be broken when i don't follow through. and when that happens, i may as well give up...right?
i find resolutions to be depressing. they act as though they will present hope, when really all they provide is disappointment.
which is precisely why i am refusing to make any resolutions this year-
instead i think a few goals are in order. while goals and resolutions may be interchangeable in some minds, i would beg to differ.
after having to create many short term and long term goals for patients this past semester, i would like to point out a few differences-
goals can include other people to provide accountability
goals can provide reasonable ways to achieve the desired result, even taking into account the individual's needs, strengths and weaknesses
goals can give hope when we mess up
that's why i'm refusing to make any resolutions this year, but happily setting several goals.
"i can do all things through christ who gives me strength."
Posted by alicat at 1/01/2008