Friday, April 29, 2011

God's Provision

I think if I was a member of a nation in the bible, I'd be an Israelite. Every two seconds they see God do something miraculous and then turn around and panic, afraid He's not going to come through for them. Yet He never once fails to provide for them. This happens so often in my life! I watched God raise $2000 in one week in order for me to go serve Him in Costa Rica on Summer Project. But then I'm afraid I won't have enough money for books, toothpaste, and shampoo. I watched him miraculously provide enough for my fiancé to buy that beautiful sparkly thing on my finger so that we could get engaged (read more about that here). Then I worry that we won't have a place to live after we say "I do" because we can't afford to put a down payment on an apartment.

For like the THOUSANDTH TIME, enter God's amazing provision.

We got into Graduate and Family Housing, which is great because: 1. It's practically on campus. 2. It's reasonably priced. 3. We get to live around other married students. 4. We have to put $0 down before we actually start living there. Praise God!

Awesome fiancé--check! Awesome apartment--check! Furniture? As my mom said, you can live on love but it's hard to sleep on it or eat dinner off of it. Well after I saw God provide a place to live, of course I didn't worry one teeny bit about something silly like not having a couch, right? I wish I could say that. Unfortunately, I told Philip if we didn't get any furniture, and we probably wouldn't, we weren't ever having friends over. Ever. Oh boy.

Here's the sequence of events that followed. My mom calls me to tell me we have a bed--for free! My aunt bought a really nice expensive one three years ago and no longer wants it because it's too soft for their preference. Philip's dad has a nice kitchen table for us. My mom has six lightly used kitchen chairs for us. A guy Philip works with offers us a love seat and a couch! Boomshakalaka! Our apartment is pretty much fully furnished with the essentials at no cost to us.

Are you a worrywart like me? Struggle to trust God? Where do you turn to for peace and provision?

Saturday, April 23, 2011

The Essentials Load

Photo by Grace Cisek using the app. Hipstimatic

Confession time. I am HORRIBLE at laundry. First of all, since I live in the dorms (click here to check out why), laundry consists of hauling my weighs-as-much-as-me laundry bag down to the ground floor, praying that there will be an open washer (There are 5 for 100s of people to share), and then checking on my laundry about 6 times to see if it's done because it the amount of time the washer's going to take is unpredictable and if you don't snatch it up right after it is done someone will kindly throw it out for you. I don't mind people who gently place it on top of the washer, or who put it in the dryer for me. However, I once had someone put all my laundry in the garbage can! Also, be sure not to leave any laundry soap or laundry hampers in that laundry room or you WILL NEVER SEE IT AGAIN! Sorry to shout, but I once hid laundry soap and it still got stolen.

So sometimes, when I don't have time to wash it all I do an essentials load. Usually this is nuzzled between writing pages and pages of papers, and an important event. This weekend, it is an overnight with the college ministry group I'm involved with: Campus Crusade for Christ. I throw enough socks, underwear, and jeans (I have an excessive amount of tops) into my laundry basket. And I wash coloreds, lights, darks, you-name-its all together in one load. That way, I have just enough to get by until I have time to do laundry for real. Usually, this buys me about a week.

Am I the only one who does this? Is it just because I'm a college student? Any other household chore horror stories?

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Is He Not Almighty? Or Does He Just Not Care?

When tragedy happens, it's difficult to understand why. I recently watched a video in which a Christian was asked by a reporter, in light of what's going on in Japan, does God A. Not have the power to stop it? or B. Not care? If you're like me and believe that there is a God who is both sovereign and cares, you might wrestle with this. I guarantee you will be asked a similar question at some point: How can a loving God allow pain and suffering? Or suppose you're not sure you believe in God, and are kind of with the questioning reporter.

I am BY NO MEANS an expert theologian. I don't necessarily think that's a requirement for God revealing things to you. At any rate, these are my jumbled thoughts on this.

First of all, I need to understand that Jesus weeps with us. Take a look at this passage from the B-I-B-L-E.

When Jesus saw her weeping, and the Jews who had come along with her also weeping, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. “Where have you laid him?” he asked.
“Come and see, Lord,” they replied.
Jesus wept.
(John 11)

Jesus sees this woman, who he loves, and her friends weeping over her dead brother and his response is to weep as well. I want to look at my life and everything in it through this scope. If my pain causes God pain, that changes everything. If He feels my pain, He must choose very carefully what He allows to come into my life. He understands. Human suffering deeply moves and troubles Him.

The next thing to look at is my shallow view of good. What things do we ask God for? Blessings, prosperity, comfort, healing. All outright good things. But what if sometimes good things actually come through seemingly bad circumstances--even painful ones? I have personally experienced this. When my parents got a divorce, I began to feel worthless. So many of my tears have been dedicated to this singular event. Yet this is the very thing that drew me to God. When it felt like no one saw me as worthy, I turned to prayer, to music about Jesus, to the bible. I began to see myself as infinitely worthy through His eyes. This changed my life! And what about the hard things that turn out to be some of the best things? Like marriage, raising kids, going on mission trips. Now I'm not saying you should go out and pray for tragedy to happen. Dear Lord, please bring as much pain as possible into my life. No! I am simply suggesting that our view of good might be too small.

*Disclaimer* Yes this song is a little cheesy-sounding. No, it cannot compete with Mumford and Sons. Please give it a chance despite these things. The words just might resonate with you like they struck a chord in my heart.

How do you deal with suffering?  And what do you think about it spiritually, philosophically?

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Meet My New Friends

I am participating in Blog Club through Blog Guide Book. Which is kind of like Breakfast Club, or Fight Club--except cooler, and less bloody. I'd like to take a moment to introduce you to some new friends of mine. We have all been grouped together to provide some healthy blog support. I am a little intimidated because most of these gals have WAY more followers than me, and much more life experience under their belts than I do. I know they will be gracious with my humble blog and can't wait to get to know these people, who I probably would've never met otherwise. Isn't the blogging world fun? Hop on over and check out:

Susan at  This Day!

Brandy at  Just Our Style

TIffani at  Thoughts from Tiffani

Mindy at  Best Energies Best Affections

Joyce Taber at  The Cotton Thistle and
 Cottage Attic Crafts

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Something New

Do you notice anything different? Men, that could be a dangerous question if asked by your lady friend. Rule of thumb, check hair, makeup, and clothes. But take a look around my blog. Look very carefully. Look DOWN. WAY DOWN. At the bottom. That is my new wedding countdown from Daisy Path. Check them out for all your down-counting needs.  Today it says 2 months, 3 weeks, and 5 days. Which translates to: 87 more days. It's a little misleading at times, because I'm tempted to just look at the months and think I'm getting married in 2 months, but really it's closer to 3. Anywho, that means 87 days in which to do far more than 87 days worth of work preparing for the wedding/marriage, and 87 more days until I get to wear a beautiful dress, have a party with my best friends, and become Mrs. Chelsea Renee Arnold.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

My Sister is Snoopy...

...And I'm so proud! My sister steals the show (am I biased?) in the play "You're a Good Man Charlie Brown." The thing about this play is: it has no plot. It's basically some of Charlie Brown's classic comic strips brought to life. Add in a few musical numbers and some cute high school kids to play the parts and voile! You've got a great show. The play was good for a lot of laughs and for displaying young talent.  Snoopy Jord sang beautifully! I think they cast her in the perfect role. Snoopy was honest, dramatic, expressive, funny, and wanted to bite people every once in awhile--which fits my sister. She was on stage the whole time, for the majority of it laying on her red dog house, then sitting up to describe some silly Snoopy ponderings. Jordan also had sang belted two solo musical numbers in Snoopy mode.

Some of my favorite Snoop Dawg lines:

"My teeth are tingling!"

"What's wrong with making meal times a joyous occasion?"

"Curse you Red Baron!"

"I will pounce...I just realized how far it was [from on her dog house] from the ground up here."

"Today I am a dog. Yesterday I was a dog. Tomorrow, I'll probably still be a dog. There's just so little hope for advancement!"

"I hate to disillusion her, but I don't even know what a rabbit smells like."

P.S. look at the FRONT ROW seats she reserved for the fiance and I. What a gem.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Best of: Four Years with Phil

This is probably the last dating anniversary I'll ever celebrate. Bittersweet. As of today, Philip David Arnold has been in a relationship with Chelsea Renee Dinsmoor for the past 4 years. Highlights from our time together:

Going to 4 Proms together.

Getting to know each other over shooting hoops, walking his dogs, watching Happy Feet, and going to church and youth group.

Him calling me the day after our first date.

Wishing for him at 11:11 every night.

Philip's note that said, "Roses are red violets are blue, will you go out with me cuz I really like you."

Saying yes a full day later.

Hours of talking on the phone.

Mall trips with Korey Johnson.

Saying, "I love you."

First kiss in the dairy queen parking lot (after I had pushed Philip's face into his ice cream).

Philip's gift of a promise ring.

Philip supporting me at wrestling matches. Greeting him with sweaty victory hugs.

Meeting each other's extended families at our graduation parties.

Working together on staff at Ross Point Camp.

Hearing God say He wanted us to be together forever, for the first time. As we held hands and prayed I said, "I think this is how God wants it. Us together with our eyes on Him."

Crying while he holds me.

Finding a love note and roses in my room (at camp).

Hanging out and laughing a lot with David Gardiner together--the love triangle.

Trips to Tekoa to be with Phil's dad.

Phil baking me cakes.

Living in Streit-Perham, just one floor apart.

Going to CRU and church together.

Exploring the Lewiston Scenic Overlook, and climbing to the Lewiston 'L' (Philip peed on it).

Feeling closer than ever before while I was in Costa Rica and he was in Ocean city even though there were more miles and less communication between us than there'd ever been.

Sitting in the grass listening to him talk about summer project.

Going on dates on the last day of each finals week.

Giving Philip back rubs.

Getting engaged!

Registering together at Bed Bath and Beyond.

Premarital counselling, and the deep convos it brings up.

Road trips to Spokane.

Sunday, April 10, 2011

Top Ten Better Ways to Spend $15,000,000

I recently found out that Washington State University spent 15 million dollars on...Adding new programs? Improving existing degrees? Ending world hunger?  WRONG. On changing their website. Former (the students page) myWSU has become zzusis. A format that, in my humble opinion, is not better. For me, it feels MORE confusing! At any rate it is not 15 million big ones better! So for today's top tens, we have Top Ten Better Ways to Spend $15,000,000:

1. Feed starving kids in Africa.

2. Feed starving kids in Detriot.

3. Buy 277,777 pairs of Toms shoes.

4. Bring the theater department back to Washington State University.

5. Pay for my wedding. (a little selfish? maybe. Better than Zzusis? I think so).

6. Give $1,000 scholarships to 15,000 WSU students.

7. Plant Gerber daisies all over campus.

8. Start a women's (okay, and men's) wrestling program at WSU.

9. Buy new showers for Streit-Perham.

10. Send Coug's on Summer Projects!

How would you spend $15,000,000? Washington State University, take notes.

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Puppy vs. Hubby

They got a puppy! I want one too!

From Adventures of the Newlyweds

Aaaaand here's the dilemma. Philip hates pets. I want to take every sick _________(insert any cute animal) home with me and nurse it back to health. We made a pact to not have any pets [who are too big to fit in a tank] for our first year of marriage. It's probably a good idea. We are learning a lot about compromise in premarital counseling. I know this verse is going to be applied to our marriage frequently:

Do nothing from selfishness or empty conceit, but with humility of mind regard one another as more important than yourselves; do not merely look out for your own personal interests, but also for the interests of others. --Philippians 2:3-4

*sigh* In the best interest of my hubby-to-be I will squelch my desire for a dog for now, and focus the affection I would give that little guy to Philip instead. Belly rubs, scratches behind the ears, playing fetch--okay, just kidding about that last one. If we ever do get a dog, we BOTH like the following breeds:

Sunday, April 3, 2011

So this is what it feels like to be a winner...

Original Photo

Have you ever entered a blog giveaway? (I’m thinking about hosting one soon). Well, I entered this one. The polls are in and…I won! Out of 125 entries I was randomly selected along with 25 of the blogosphere’s finest. These words won me a new CD:

1. Chelsea Dinsmoor

2. English Education

3. Washington State University

4. Getting engaged to my bf of 4 years over a scavenger hunt hosted by some of my best friends and then a celebratory dinner at the Melting Pot.

5. Better is One Day-- Kutless; but props to the Biebs.

. I am anxiously awaiting a CD of blogger Em’s top 20 favorite songs. From the looks of it, she’s way cooler than me musically. I need to expand my listening selection from Taylor Swift, Jesus music, more Taylor Swift and the occasional Katy Perry with a good dancing beat. Em enjoys smooth sounds like Mumford & Sons and The Civil Wars. My (rockstar) sister and (music major) roomie will be so proud!

Now, let’s play a little Jeopardy. Any idea what the questions that prompted those answers were? Bonus points if you make me laugh.
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