Sunday, December 27, 2009

2009 in Review

2009 had its ups and downs. God’s blessings and provisions were amazing, but life, as always, was not without its share of difficulty.

In January I started a new job working with a mentally impaired Deaf woman. This was such a blessing! It pays more than minimum wage, is close to home, and utilizes my sign language skills. This job was totally a God thing and I actually really love it (most days). There have been some ups and downs, but this job has been a major blessing. In addition, this past fall I was allowed to use it as my Field Experience for school which was really great since I wasn’t sure how I was going to fit in one more activity in my schedule!

During the winter semester I was working three jobs (Hallmark, Writing Center Tutor, and the new job) and taking 15 credit hours at school (including almost all of my interpreting classes). It was an insane schedule, but God saw me through it. Normally I get sick about once a semester, but not once did I get sick during that semester! God is so good! I was also involved in a Kairos group again with an amazing group of girls. The book that we read was awesome (Chasing Daylight by Erwin McManus) and I really grew close to the group of girls I was with.

In May I watched a couple of friends graduate (and a couple move away). That was really bittersweet. I was really excited for them but I knew I would miss them in the fall when school started back up again. Also in May, I quit my job at Hallmark. My schedule was just getting too hectic and something needed to go. Hallmark paid the least and had the worst schedule, so it went. I still go back and visit every once in while and I still shop there when I need something. The month of May must have been really busy, because during that month I also got my first taste of KidBUILDERS. KidBUILDERS (KB) is part of a ministry down in Detroit called LifeBUILDERS. Its focus is ministering to the local kids and bringing them into a closer relationship with Jesus. I absolutely loved it from the first moment I walked in. I went the whole month of May and then managed to arrange my school schedule for the fall to allow me to go down every Tuesday night. I fell in love with these kids and as much as they can drive me crazy some nights, I wouldn’t stop going for the world. They have blessed me beyond belief and I’m sure they don’t even realize it.

The summer was pretty crazy. It was the first summer that I didn’t have any classes to take, but it still was really busy. In June, we did our VBS (Vacation Bible School) down at KB. I had such an amazing time. I mean, normally VBS is my favorite time of the year (think a little kid and Christmas), but I had a blast with these kids. The crew I had was of all little boys. I have never seen so much energy in one place, but I loved every minute of the craziness! I know God is going to use the energy for his glory!! Though at times, I’ll admit, I was wishing I had some of their energy!

July brought our VBS at Heritage and the carnival. Both were just amazing. There were so many people and kids there. It is still hard to believe! I was really excited for VBS this year because I knew I had two of them to do! In addition, July also brought the start of the Watershed Girls Bible study. That was amazing and I had such a great time fellowshipping with a bunch of girls and doing Beth Moore’s Bible study on Esther. I learned so much and God used that to totally work in my life.

August was pretty busy because my cousin was getting married and I was in the wedding. It was a beautiful wedding that took place on August 15th. Right after the wedding Jess moved back to Pennsylvania where she and her new husband, Peter, live. We miss her, but she comes up to visit every once in awhile.

September came and with it the start of my senior year of college. Time sure has flown. I took 13 credit hours and pulled a 4.0 this semester. I also survived a 21 page final that covered my four years in the Sign Language Studies Department. The semester was a bit stressful, but it went well. I was also involved in another Kairos group. These girls totally rock my socks off! I love them to death and we just click so well. I know God placed me in that group at just the right time, when he knew I would need it. We also read an amazing, life-changing, heart-wrecking book (The Prodigal God by Timothy Keller) which brought me to my knees more than once all out searching and seeking God’s face. It still amazes me how much God can use books and conversation to slap me upside the head when he’s trying to teach me something. And teach me something he did. God used that book in powerful ways.

At the end of the semester, I found out a new friend was moving back home (to a different state). As sad I was to see him go, I’m really excited to see what God has planned for him in this new step. I also watched more friends close to me graduate and leave me for one more semester until I can join them! It’s been hard to see all these friends move on, but I’m really excited for them and for what’s next in their lives!

Other random things that happened in 2009:

  • I celebrated my 21st birthday in November by going out to breakfast with my grandma, getting a manicure and pedicure, and going out to dinner with my family. On a side note, for the first time ever I was able to wear flip flops on my birthday! It was 60 degrees!!
  • I still hate driving, but between work and school I can drive between 400 and 500 miles a week. I spend an enormous amount of time in my car.
  • I had my first two paid interpreting jobs this year (don’t wearing interpreting people, both were perfectly legal!)
  • My parents celebrated their 25th anniversary and my “little” sister turned 16!
  • Uncle Dave Kuhnle has been declared cancer free!
  • God has been faithful to my family even during unemployment, cancer, and surgeries.
  • I had my first crown… I am an official princess now …. Still waiting for my prince though…
  • I have one semester left of school, one tuition payment left, and I’m still debt free!
  • This year I have seen heart change, life change, answered prayer, and people pursuing God sized passions and dreams, and it has thrilled my heart beyond belief to watch this.

2009 may be almost over. This year God has proven himself faithful over and over again. In 2010, I hope to see more heart change, life change, answered prayer, and people pursuing God sized passions and dreams. Yet, more than anything else, I hope—and pray—for the biggest heart change and life change to be my own, for prayers to be answered in ways that can only be explained by “It was totally God”, and for my passions and dreams to be God sized. 2009 was great, but I can’t wait to see what God will do in 2010.

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