Tuesday, July 31, 2012


(Hosea 11:10)
They will follow the Lord; he will roar like a lion. When he roars, his children will come trembling from the west. 

Even when we turn from the Lord, He is still always pursuing us and will not stop until He gets our attention. What does He seriously have to do to get your attention? God is jealous for YOU! He is not willing to share His children with anyone or anything.

I think too many times we have reduced God down to being just our friend, or almost like a genie that we pull out whenever we need something. We've forgotten that Christ is the Lord of the universe! He is the Almighty God and supreme over all things! We will never add to His glory, but yet He still wants to use ordinary people like you and me to do amazing things for Him. If we take God out of the picture, we are nothing. Without God our lives are a waste.

I've been thinking a lot lately about Heaven, and eternity, and how I want to spend my life on this earth. Truly, only what is done for Christ will last. Nothing else matters.

You see, being a "normal" Christian is just not enough. What Jesus did on the cross for us was not normal. There is a battle between REAL forces of good and evil going on here, and I want to do whatever it takes to point people to Jesus, who is the Savior of the world! He is my hope and redeemer, the only one worth living for.

The Love Of Christ,

Sunday, July 29, 2012

New Mexico Mission Trip!

Last week our church went to do some work at Aspendale, a Christian camp in the mountains of Cloudcroft, NM. It's beautiful there, and I had so much fun! I don't usually like being outdoors, but it was really good to just get away for a week and serve God with my family. 

(Me and my sister at the front sign. I'm in the black jacket.)

During our trip we also got the chance to go to White Sands, a desert and National Park that is only thirty minutes away from Cloudcroft. It was pretty cool sliding down the sand dunes! I have to admit that at first I didn't want to go to White Sands because I thought it would be really hot and boring, but that wasn't the case! The weather was actually nice and I enjoyed it.

(My family and I with some friends of ours.)

On our last night at Aspendale we had a bonfire, which was a great way to end the week. We had a good time talking and roasting marshmallows. James and Jacob, two of the staff workers that I've been helping almost everyday, showed us the new swords that they just bought. And yes, they are actual swords. I've got no idea what they'll do with them...
(This is James. He's always talking in an accent or singing a song or trying to make you laugh. So yeah, he's kinda crazy. :) 
And so is Jacob...)

(Me, holding a sword.)

(Finally, this is most of our church group before we left the camp. I'm in the pink shirt on the right.)

I'm so thankful that God allowed my family and I to go on this trip. All the work we did at Aspendale is for Him, and I pray that it would somehow further His Kingdom. Hopefully we'll go again next year!

The Love Of Christ,

Saturday, July 21, 2012


Hey everyone! I would have posted about Super Summer earlier, but this week I was at a choir camp and next week my family will be in New Mexico for a short mission trip.

Anyway, Super Summer was great! I think I just came to understand the greatness of God even more, and how I need to give Him glory in ALL that I do. The worship service was the best part, especially when the band led everyone in singing. It is the most beautiful thing to see hundreds of other teens raising their hands and praising the Lord with all their might. It's a time when people will break down crying, and it's a time when God's Holy Spirit really moves. You can truly sense His presence.

This year I fell in love with two of the songs the band played, With Everything and You're Beautiful by Phil Wickham. (You can listen to You're Beautiful in the youtube video above.) I am filled with awe of how BEAUTIFUl Jesus is!

Please pray for me right now, as I've been feeling since the beginning of summer that God is calling me to be more involved in missions. I don't know exactly what that looks like, but I am considering an international mission trip in the near future. Please pray that the Lord would make His will known to me and show me how I can best serve Him.

The Love Of Christ,

" Missionaries and ministers of mercy don't come from nowhere. They come from people like you, stunned by the glory of God and stopped in your tracks."
- John Piper

"People often ask if I think my life is dangerous, if I am afraid. I am much more afraid of remaining comfortable."
- Katie Davis

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Prayer Request and a Song Of Hope

Many of you know that in 2010 I spent three months in the hospital due to eating issues. Most of the time I was there, I stayed at an eating disorder unit and had the chance to meet so many amazing girls. The sad thing was they didn't know just how beautiful they were!

Today I'm asking for your prayers for one of my good friends who is also experiencing an eating disorder. Please pray that God would  give her and her whole family strength and comfort. Pray that she would have a breakthrough and that her eyes would be opened to just how much God loves her and how He wants to use her life for His glory. I believe that the Lord does have the power to heal her, and that there is hope.

1 Peter 2:9 says: "But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light."

Once you have been saved, you truly are a princess made righteous through the blood of Christ. Satan has no power over you. You are royalty and belong to the Almighty God! Remember that and strive to live that out. God's got a plan for your life, so surrender everything to Him. He will give you the strength.

- Michal

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Twilight: The Hidden Messages

Alright, this is something I've been wanting to talk about for a long time. I've always been against Twilight, but at one point I was really tempted to try watching it.... that is, until I did a little research of my own. (Most of the information I found came from this source.)

I believe that Twilight is a whole lot darker than it is cracked out to be. What is it about this franchise that is drawing in so many young girls? And if it's only a book, what's the harm in reading it? To answer that question, we have to start from the beginning.

The idea for Twilight came to Stephenie Meyer in the form of a dream. On her website, she says," I woke up (on that June 2nd) from a very vivid dream. In my dream, two people were having an intense conversation in a meadow in the woods. One of these people was just your average girl. The other person was fantastically beautiful, sparkly, and a vampire. They were discussing the difficulties inherent to the facts that (A) they were falling in love with each other while (B) the vampire was particularly attracted to the scent of her blood, and was having a difficult time restraining to himself to killing her immediately."

When Stephanie Meyer awoke, she quickly began to write down everything she had seen in the dream. She described Bella and Edward as "quite literally, voices in my head. They simply wouldn't shut up." Now, here's where it gets strange: Shortly after the writing of Twilight was finished, Meyer had another dream, where Edward appeared to her saying that she had gotten it all wrong and that he DID drink human blood. (In the books, Edward and his family are "vegetarians.")

I don't know about you, but something about those two dreams sound a little strange to me. Did they really just come from her mind? They didn't come from God. 

Another thing I found interesting was that on Breaking Dawn's screen writer's facebook, she writes that she would "ensure plenty of blood and sex in both films." Do you honestly want to be filling your mind with that junk? Philippians 4:8 says: "Finally, my brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything if excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things." Is Twilight really any of those things? Ask yourself that.

There is also the issue of Edward and his family being "good" vampires. Have you considered what vampires actually are? Either something is pleasing to God or it is not. There's no compromising.  (See Isaiah 5:20.)

The last thing I'd like to point out is the cover of Twilight and what is stands for. As you've probably noticed, on the front of the book is a picture of two hands holding out an apple. Inside the book, you've probably also noticed the Bible verse at the beginning, Genesis 2:17: "But you must not eat from the tree of knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat of it you will surely die." Edward represents the forbidden fruit. How? Well, there's one point in the series when Edward leaves Bella for a time, because obviously, he's a vampire and she is a mortal. It's dangerous for them to be together. During that period Bella is completely depressed. She eventually tells Edward that she doesn't care about her soul and just wants to be with him. Later on in the books Bella does end up marrying Edward and transforms into a vampire, which results in her human soul "dying."

That right there is a very harmful message to be sending to readers. We should absolutely care about our soul! Not only that, but we should also care about focusing on God a whole lot more than focusing on boys! Throughout Twilight, Bella is pretty much obsessed with Edward. Girls today need to know that you do NOT need a guy to make you happy! If God wants you to marry, then He will send you the right guy at the right time.

I know I've come on pretty strong in this post, but I felt like it's something that had to be done. Please know that I have nothing against any of you ladies who do choose to read/watch Twilight, as that decision is between you and the Lord. However, the bottom line is this: It's not about what you do or don't do; it's about your relationship with Christ. If you are faced with a decision that makes you question whether this is right or wrong, ask yourself this: Is it holy? Am I being entertained by the things that put my precious Jesus on the cross? If God were right here beside me (which He is), what would He do? I think you'll have your answer

The Love Of Christ,

P.S. I will not be posting next week because I'm off to youth camp... so excited!! God will do great things!

Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Answer Is Jesus

This has got to be one of the most inspirational videos I've ever seen! Everyday we hear so many corrupt lies that our culture tries to feed us. They have come close to convincing us that God is not enough, and that instead we must chase after things like beauty, boys, sex, drugs, or maybe even the latest new Apple product. America has come to the point where we worship all those things. We are completely obsessed with materialism. Our generation is screaming for an answer, for something worth living for. And the answer is JESUS! Christians today our failing to proclaim the gospel. We are in a desperate need of revival!

God has called ALL of us to be missionaries, to take his name to the nations, whether that is here in the U.S. or maybe even some other country. Hudson Taylor once said, "The Great Commission is not an option to be considered; it is a command to be obeyed."
The Lord COMMANDS us to share the gospel, but we've got to be 100% sold out to Him. Once you've surrendered your life to God, living an ordinary life isn't an option. Get out of your comfort zone! What are you truly willing to sacrifice to further the Kingdom Of God?

(Philippians 3:7-8)
But whatever was to my profit, I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss compared to the surpassing greatness of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them rubbish, that I may gain Christ.

- Michal

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

From My Heart

Did you know that...
Each year, 14,505,000 children grow up as orphans and age out of the system by age sixteen?

Did you know that...
25,000 children under age five die of preventable deaths every day?

Did you know that...
HIV/AIDS has killed more than 8 million African farmworkers, increasing the risk of famine and leaving 4.2. million children orphaned?

All over the world, people are hurting. But they are not just statistics.... they are God's precious children whom He loved enough to die for. I want to also do whatever it takes to love them.

Over the past month, I've really come to realize just how much need there is all around us. Why aren't Christians doing anything about it? What am I doing about it? Why do I have so much? Just like the Lord commands us to carry out the Great Commission, He also commands to care for the hurting. It is not an option. It's a requirement. If Christians are not involved in at least some type of form of ministry, how are we really making a difference for the Lord? How are we supposed to share the gospel?

While I agree that everyone could always be doing more, does God really only want us to be doing "enough?" I am determined that I do not do enough. I am determined to go anywhere, at anytime, at any cost, to do anything to testify to the gospel of God's grace. (Acts 20:24.)  That is the only reason why I'm alive.

I am not saying that we should spend so much time on loving others that we don't even have time for our own family. But just start somewhere, even if it's doing something small. Don't wait until you are older to live a legacy; start now. God can use you to do great things for Him right where you are. Take time to pray about it and ask what He wants you to do.

God did not put us here to change the whole world. HE will do that; we are merely a small part of His plan. If you were to think about just how many bad things happen everyday, it will literally overwhelm you, but our job is not to fix all those things. Our job is to trust that Jesus has a plan. Our job is to listen for Him, to be obedient to Him, to say yes when He tells us to do something. Our job is to point as many people to Him, so that when the day comes that we stand before the Lord, He will say, "Well done good and faithful servant."

We Are Never Alone,

Friday, June 29, 2012

My Life Since Last Summer..

I cannot believe it's been this long since I posted on here! I've been trying to take a break from the internet, just because it's so addicting. I'm sure many of you can relate. ;)

Anyway, let me just say that it's been a great year. It was my first time back in public school since 4th grade, and it went really well. One of the best parts was getting to help lead a See You At The Pole!! We had around 167 students show up, and it was just a great time of prayer. God had it all worked out. I'll be a high school freshman this school year, but I'd love to be a part of leading another SYATP.

Another thing that I loved about 8th grade was choir. It was so much fun, and I made many new friends. I loved being able to grow musically, and I finally got up the courage to sing in front of people! A few months ago I wouldn't have dreamed of doing that! :D

I have many good memories from this year, but there were some struggles. It was harder than I thought to stay focused on God, and towards the end of the February, I'll admit that I didn't do a good job doing that. I started thinking more about guys and other things. As a result, I slowly stopped having reading my Bible as much as I had been before. When it came to witnessing, I wasn't that inspired. I still wanted to do it, but I guess I just became discouraged. 

The week after school ended, and our church held a D-Now. The speaker was talking about how we need to be completely sold out to God, and how we need to identify stuff in our life that sometimes hold us back from Him. I came up withe a bunch of things: Technology, guys, arguing with siblings, excuses, laziness, and complaining. These have all not been helping me to bring God glory. Once I pinpointed those things, it became a little easier to slowly get rid of them, or to stop thinking about them all the time. 

That brings me to mention something else: Once you start saying no to some things, you have to start saying yes to other things. Christians should be known for what they do, not what they don't do. We need to be 100% sold out to God! You are either hot or cold, but don't be lukewarm. The Lord COMMANDS us to live a holy life, and he commands us to share the gospel. I started to think about this question: What am I doing to glorify God? What am I really doing to glorify God? See, once you start saying yes to God, He will use as his instrument. But one thing to remember is to stay alert! Always be focused on God, and don't let Satan distract you. 

After D-Now, I think I was re-inspired to get back into the Word and to work on whatever was hindering me from the Lord. My Mom also gave me a great book, I Would Die For You, about a 15-year old guy named BJ Higgins who was very involved in missions. He went on two very intense mission trips to Peru, and was always looking for every opportunity to share Christ with someone. Even back at home, BJ was on fire for God. He mentioned to a few people that he felt like God was calling him to be martyr. Unfortunately, in 2005 BJ caught a serious illness in Peru. He died shortly after, but his death has not been in vain! His story has inspired millions. MercyMe wrote a song in honor of him, which like the book, is also called I Would Die For You. If any of you are interested in reading the book, I highly recommend it! It will really challenge and encourage you! It was written by BJ's parents, Brent and Deanna Higgins. 

Well, I guess that's about all I've got to say. I'm going to Super Summer in less than two weeks, which is a really cool Christian camp. Please be in prayer for that. It is very intense, but last year I learned so much about God. The worship service is AMAZING. It's like you can sense God's presence. There are no words to describe it! Seriously, you all need to come to that camp next Summer!

I will be trying to post regularly again, so stay tuned. :)
- Michal

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Hunger Games Review From a Christian Perspective

I saw this movie last night after reading the books, and it was very good! Out of five stars I'd give it three and half for violence and sometimes language. It is rated PG-13, so talk to your parent before seeing it. All the actors did a great job, and the movie stuck with the books pretty well.

As for the plot summary, The Hunger Games is basically about a girl named Katniss Everdeen who lives in Panem, which is what used to be America but is now controlled by dictators. There are 12 districts, but years back they rebelled against The Capitol, known as "the dark days." As a form of punishment toward Panem, The Capitol forces one girl and one boy ages 12-18 ("tributes") from each district to compete in The Hunger Games, a competition for survival. The awful thing is that there's only one winner. Once the tributes have been selected, they are sent to The Capitol to train, which includes learning how to fight and use survival skills. They each have a training mentor and stylist who try to prepare them for impressing the officials and gaining sponsors.

Katniss is a teenage girl who is hardworking and tries to take care of her family. Her father died when she was young. She enjoys hunting in the woods with her lifelong friend, Gale. When her sister is chosen for The Hunger Games, Katniss volunteers as a tribute. It's then that she once again meets Peeta Mellark, the boy also chosen to compete from her district who helped her during a time when she had no food. That's where a little romance ties into the story. ;)

Jennifer Lawrence plays Katniss, Josh Hutcherson plays Peeta, and Liam Hensworth is Gale. I thought they all did a good job with the acting, including Rue and "The Careers." Jennifer nabbed her role perfectly, and Josh was really a great pick for Peeta.

There is some violence in this film. We see arrows pinned to kids, dead bodies lying on the ground, blood, and many wounds. The two most violent scenes include a girl getting stung by a swarm of venomous wasps (causing her whole body to swell up), and near the beginning when the the tributes are running toward the Cornucopia. The good thing is that the camera takes quick, almost blurry shots during some of these scenes.

I was able to get some positive elements out of The Hunger Games. Katniss and Peeta are bother very selfless and are willing to risk their lives for the ones they love. Katniss truly cares about her family, and we see this when she volunteers to take her sister's place at The Reaping. She is also determined not to let Rue or Peeta die. The same could be said about Peeta. When Katniss is taking care of his wound in the cave, he refuses to let her go to The Cornucopia to get the medicine for him. He is willing die for Katniss. Bravery, friendship, sacrifice, and loyalty are all things you will find in The Hunger Games.

I think watching this movie also showed me how blessed we are, and having the privilege live in a free country. If you think about it, it's the sad truth, but America is almost like The Capitol. Here we are with everything we could ever need, while children in some countries are struggling just to find food and make it through the day. We don't know how blessed we are! That's why we need to thank God and reach out to others who need help. Because what if we were one day to wake up, and our oh-so-beautiful life was gone? Jennifer Lawrence describes The Hunger Games as,"This is what our society could be like if we became desensitized to trauma and to each other's pain."

Overall, I thought the The Hunger Games was a good movie. I laughed, I cried, and I was rooting for Katniss to stay strong throughout the whole thing. They left out some parts from the book, but did a nice job sticking with most of it. I think at times it could have used some better background music though.

While some critics are claiming The Hunger Games to be the "next Twilight", I agree and disagree. I never cared for Twilight much because of how dark it is, but I agree that The Hunger Games could be the next big franchise.. and actually, I'm thankful for that because I'm sick of Twilight. I disagree with COMPARING The Hunger Games to Twilight. Twilight is very dark and has, well, no point. The Hunger Games is dealing with much more serious issues and even has some good messages in it.

What did ya'll think of The Hunger Games? Have you read the books? Which one do you think was better? For me surprisingly, I'm going to have to say the movie. Now I cannot wait for Catching Fire! :)

- Bookworm