Sunday, November 22, 2009

Thankful, in every situation, even singleness....

It is funny to me how many people feel the need to feel sorry for me. How uncomfortable people are with the fact that I am, shall I dare say the dreaded word? Single. OH DEAR HEAVENS! Say it ain't so!!!!!!

I actually had someone say to me:
"My family and I were talking about you the other day Merea, and how we all feel really sorry for you."
I said, "Really? Why is that?"
They said "Well, you know, how you are single and not dating anyone and your sisters all are and they are getting married before you and everything."
YES folks. That actually happened to me. I can only laugh at that. I get comments like that often. Actually, many people feel the need to "fix" my terrible condition. Tell me all the ways I can remedy this catastrophic situation in my life. "Are you putting yourself out there?" "Do you have any guy friends?" "You know if you finally realize that you would be okay single and content, God will bring someone along." At my sister's wedding: "well Merea, we thought you would be first, we need to get you married, etc."

I just wanted to tell everyone to stop. I'm okay. Are you going to be? Stop feeling sorry for me, I do that enough on my own for Pete's sake, as we all do. lol.
Now, I must admit, I want to get married with all of my heart and soul. I want to find a Godly man, commit my life to him, and have a family. I am ready for that and have been for a very long time. BUT GOD doesn't have that for me right now. There are so many people who tell me, without even knowing my heart, that if I am content being single that God will finally bring the right man along. What if God wants me to be content IN singleness? What if God is constantly teaching me about reliance on Him as I walk this path that I would not have chosen on my own? What if He has a different plan for my life? Would that be okay?

Let me tell you about my life right now. Maybe you won't feel sorry for me anymore. I am young, 28 and beautiful, if I might say that. =) I have a job that allows me to minister to 18 and 19 year old women. I get to laugh with them, teach them, pray for them, tell them about Christ, and see them grow. I have a wonderful variety of friends, and yes, alot of good guy friends, who encourage me often. I have a beautiful apartment where I host parties and make dinner for those girls and friends all the time. God has given me the ability to sing, and I get more and more opportunity to use that everyday. I have had the opportunity to travel to nine different countries, I have seen New York at Christmas time, and am headed to Seattle for a spring break service trip. I got to be in two musical productions last year. I have a wonderful family, who have blessed me everyday in more ways than I can count. A Godly father who preaches the Word, a Mom who cares about even the details of my heart, 3 sisters who are and forever will be my best friends, and a brother who makes me cry because I am so proud of who He is becoming for Christ.
I have health and shelter.

But most of all....
I have a God, who sent His Son to die for my sins, who gave me abundant and eternal life, who adopted me into His family, made me an heir, and counted me righteous.

What more could I have?

I would challenge everyone, no matter what walk of life you are at, to encourage those single adults you know, not feel sorry for them. Invite them to your home, because they are friends, not out of pity. and introduce them to your other single friends. ha ha ha ha ha ha.

Happy Thanksgiving, from one thankful single woman, who needs to write this post more than others need to read it. Good reminder to myself.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Love Stinks


Everything you say to me is disappointing. I wait in expectation for your declaration of love to me and my heart breaks over and over again! You lead me on and toy with my emotions in ways I cannot express. How can you live with yourself?

You know how much I love sweaters. You know how my heart leaps for joy when I can see my breath in the air. You know how beautiful I think the color of changing leaves and the smell of fireplaces burning is. Why? WHY?? WWWHHHYYYYY????

You know how much cuter I am in scarves, hats and warm sweatshirts. Why must you torture me over and over again with summer clothing.

I get sick, literally sick, because I go from Air conditioning to gusts of HOT air and my emotions are overwhelmed!

Hot coffee is better than iced coffee.

Please! Some good news would be welcome. Tell me how much you love me, whisper sweet nothings into my ear, embrace me, kiss me with kindness.

Always anticipating your love, tell me what I want to hear Baby,

Merea =)

Friday, August 14, 2009

CHANGE: Friend and Foe


A word that has come upon me so swiftly in the last 4 days, I can hardly breathe.

Change has never come easy for me. Sometimes it excites me, sometimes it scares me terribly. This time it is both.

There are so many ways that my life is changing drastically this week and I am a bit overwhelmed, emotional, excited, sad, stressed, scared, confident, lost and nostalgic. Just to name a few of my feelings. and yes, I feel each of those so true through my mind and heart this week.

This week on Monday, I interviewed with the President of California Baptist University for a job that I have been interested in for awhile. The Director of the Women's Dorm. I was hired on Tuesday morning, and asked to start on Wednesday. Tuesday I went into tell Arrowhead Christian Academy, a place so near and dear to me, that I was leaving for sure. I showed up Wednesday at 8 am and have been in meetings or packing ever since. I move into a new apartment this weekend and change my life drastically.

I was given 3 hours on Thursday morning to clean out my classroom that I have been teaching in for the last 5 years. I didn't realize the toll it would take on me. As I opened each desk drawer and cleaned out each cabinet I saw the many student projects, personal thank you letters and pictures that I have kept for encouragment. See, I had fallen deeply in love with each of them, in the most sincere way I can explain. Each day I had them smiling at me, learning from me, listening, and watching them grow. I had a staff and faculty around me that committed to the cause of Christ so passionately and encouraged me to do the same. I am having a hard time leaving so quickly. I knew there would come a time, but I didn't think I wouldn't have the time to say thank you and tell them I will miss them and take time in my room closing the door to that chapter.

But I want to say that. To the students, fellow faculty, and staff of ACA: It has been an amazing 5 years, I have lived and learned along side of you, seen you grow, prayed for your hurts and you have prayed for mine, and seen Our Savior in you. Thank you and Goodbye. I will miss all of you, and I hope to see you soon. Go Eagles!

Change also came in my family: our dog, Sadie, a beautiful golden retriever, who was in our family since I was in elementary school, died on Wednesday. Everytime I came home to our house in Beaumont for the last 15 or so years, she was there to greet me. When we were growing up and one of us wasn't home, she would wait at the door for us sleeping and then when we came home she would return to her regular bed. She was a part of our family. I know that might sound odd to some, but she was. We even had a stocking for her at Christmas time. I miss her. She had a rapidly growing tumor and was in pain and my Dad decided to put her down on Wednesday. Which was day one of my new job. Change wasn't good then. Bye Sadie. Thanks for being such a cute puppy, fun companion to take walks with, and always happy to see me.

Along with all the other things I will be leaving my two wonderful roomies, Colleen and Sarah, to live alone in the top floor of a girl's freshman dorm. There is an apartment there, of good size, but it is not the same. I know that the ministry that will take place as a result of living there will far outweigh the hardships, it is just another one of the many drastic changes that I am facing with excitement and timidity. To Colleen and Sarah: Thank you for showing me unconditional love, being my sounding boards, counseling me through hard times, and having lots of fun. I will miss getting to see you everyday. You both mean so much to me. I love you both. There are not enough words.....

So yes, CHANGE. Something that has slapped me in the face and delighted my soul all at the same time.

I will be glad on that day, when seasons stop changing, we say no more goodbyes, we are not scared, stressed or tired. But our faith will be made sight, hope will be realized, and prayer will turn into praise. Praise, to the unCHANGEing God, the beginning and the End, our Life. Him. who changed us.

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Joy to find in every station....something still to do or bear...

This hymn has rocked me to the core this summer. Read the words slowly, it is so rich with truth. Hard truth. May I will be able to sing these words and mean them with all my heart.

Jesus, I my cross have taken,
All to leave and follow Thee
Destitute, despised, forsaken,
Thou from hence my all shall be.
Perish every fond ambition,
All I’ve sought or hoped or known.
Yet how rich is my condition!
God and heaven are still my own

Man may trouble and distress me,
’Twill but drive me to Thy breast.
Life with trials hard may press me;
Heaven will bring me sweeter rest.
Oh, ’tis not in grief to harm me
While Thy love is left to me;
Oh, ’twere not in joy to charm me,
Were that joy unmixed with Thee.

Let the world despise and leave me,
They have left my Savior, too.
Human hearts and looks deceive me;
Thou art not, like them, untrue.
O while Thou dost smile upon me,
God of wisdom, love, and might,
Foes may hate and friends disown me,
Show Thy face and all is bright.

Go, then, earthly fame and treasure,
Come disaster, scorn and pain
In Thy service, pain is pleasure,
With Thy favor, loss is gain
I have called Thee Abba Father,
I have stayed my heart on Thee
Storms may howl, and clouds may gather;
All must work for good to me.

Soul, then know thy full salvation
Rise o’er sin and fear and care
Joy to find in every station,
Something still to do or bear.
Think what Spirit dwells within thee,
Think what Father’s smiles are thine,
Think that Jesus died to win thee,
Child of heaven, canst thou repine? (repine: to be fretfully discontented; complain)

Haste thee on from grace to glory,
Armed by faith, and winged by prayer.
Heaven’s eternal days before thee,
God’s own hand shall guide us there.
Soon shall close thy earthly mission,
Soon shall pass thy pilgrim days,
Hope shall change to glad fruition,
Faith to sight, and prayer to prais

Thursday, July 02, 2009

From Garbage to Growth for Good...

This summer I prayed about what passage to study, and all I heard in my mind was Galations. It was obvious that I needed it. The Lord has taught me so much in the last 2 months of my life.
I was recently sitting with my family on my parent's back porch. My Dad was commenting on a tree in our backyard that would not grow, no matter what he did! He trimmed it and watered it. Nothing. He said that a few years ago, he just had had enough and hacked it all the way to the ground! Then he looked at me and said, "and look at it now, its grown into a beautiful tree." He would not know how much that describes my life in the last year. God has pruned me, hacked me down and stripped me. All to begin sin awareness and ultimately new growth. Galations talks of living dead to your old ways and walking in the spirit. Also, Romans 8. God will take us through whatever it takes to conform us to the image of His Son. He calls that our good. May we see His discipline as a friend, our good.

Read Galations and Romans 8 this summer if you are looking for a place to start.

This is quite personal, but I thought that it might encourage some.
My summer prayer:

Dear Father,
Praise to You who know so well what to do with me.
I praise You for Your sovereign plan to do GOOD
and by that you mean conformity to Your precious Son, our treasure, Jesus Christ.

Help me to accept Your good intention for You've promised good to me.
Satisfy me in Your lovingkindness, that I may be glad all of my days.

Forgive me for sinning against You in lust, bitterness, jealousy and selfishness.
Help me to live in freedom, not in bondage, for I am set free of sin!
Adopted into Your inheritance, Your child, redeemed for Your pleasure.

Take my singleness and use it for Your glory.
May I accept what You have for me in this time
whether it be dessert or mountain top.
May I prove, over and over, Your goodness to me.

Help me fulfill Your law by loving others as I love myself.
Grant me the ability to think of others instead of wallow in self-pity.
Forgive me for that.

Turn these wasted years into restored goodness.
Strengthen me in Your Word. For Your Word is good.

Help me to die daily, recognizing what it means to be crucified with Christ,
putting off the flesh and living by faith in the Son of God
who loved me and delivered Himself up for me.

Thank You for grace.

Summer 2009.
My beginning journey out of the pit.

Sunday, June 14, 2009


Photo taken in 1918 at Camp Dodge. 18,000 men training in an army camp. How cool is that?

Wednesday, June 10, 2009


Right now I am really thankful for my roommates. This year they have become my family. I come home everyday and we laugh and have a blast. Most of all, they love me despite my weakness and I am blessed to have found people like them in this stage of my life.

Sarah Day- thanks for always listening to me and always wanting to hang out. I have so much fun with you. You mean the world!

Colleen Langley- thanks for laughing at me and making me laugh every night, thanks for encouraging in the Lord and praying!

I love you both!

Monday, May 04, 2009

I had the best weekend.

I am loving my new book club. Even though we only met once.

I am being broken and humbled more than ever before.

I miss my friends.

I loved seeing Marcella, Alex and Andrew on Saturday.

I am way being in grading because I had too much fun this weekend.

My Dad and Mom just celebrated there 25th year at Fellowship in the Pass Church. It was amazing.

I love my life, may I always remember the blessings.

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The Students and I in Ukraine

Longing vs. Discontentment

I think, perhaps, these two things have such a fine line between them. and lately the difference between them in my life is unrecognizable.

How do you find the healthy balance of keeping your deepest longings and not becoming discontent with them? I don't know if I have met any woman who has been able to conquer this.

I think and wonder if the longings should not be there, but that can't be right, we have desires, God promises to meet them if we first delight ourselves in Him. BUT my longings turn into deep discontentment in .00001 seconds. It might even be quicker than that. So should they be there? I must admit that most of what I long for has not been met. That is hard.

Maybe my deepest longing needs to change?

Maybe my deepest longing should be Him. Him, Christ, my Savior, Redeemer, Counselor, friend..... Yes, thats it.

But how? its harder than it sounds. It shouldn't be hard at all. He is beautiful and wonderful.

I believe Lord, help my unbelief.....

Saturday, April 04, 2009

I'm in Ukraine.... Hi Koren.

We are here, it is going well. I am feeling better. We are planting trees today at the orphanage and the students are doing a great job with everything. Pray for us! Jenni, tell Bas, Jon and Rick that I hope the praise night goes well.

I miss everybody. Love everybody.

Curtis, just read your blog from Ukraine. Ho-made fries? ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.


Wednesday, March 04, 2009


If anyone reads my blog that seriously you would remember the challenges that I set for myself last summer. It was called "Do Hard Things." I expanded my list a bit on my own. I thought I would update you on how that is all going.

1. One of the things was to get knee surgery. arghh. Did it. Found out I have a disease. The tumors are back. Which makes running a 5k impossible for me at the time, which was the next thing on the list. Oh well. When life gives you lemons right?

2. One of the things I challenged myself to was to become a better musician. Well, God thought I was serious on that one. Since then, I auditioned and became a professional Dickens Christmas Caroler. Got paid to sing all weekend. BUT it was stinkin hard. I had to train my ear to hear an alto note and find an alto note when they played the soprano note on the pitch pipe. eeek. Did it. Sang for Carol Channing, she said we were wonderful. If you don't know who she is, she starred on Broadway as the original Hello Dolly and starred in the movie "Thoroughly Modern Millie."
AND I learned to play, very simply play, the accordian and trumpet. Working on learning the cello as well. I know 5 notes on the cello. I love learning instruments. Who knew? It is amazing what we can do if we challenge ourselves.

I had a conversation with a great new friend at church named Kat VanRhee. She and I were discussing that it is important to not remain comfortable. And we agreed that it is not only related to spiritual things, it is just good to challenge yourself in many areas. She ate sushi, I learned the trumpet. and yes, those are equally hard for Kat and I. =)

3. The next goal I had was to become a morning person. I am getting better and since then have enjoyed the occasional early morning. When I get up, I enjoy them. There is something special about morning air, the quiet of the streets, the sunlight, and just being up earlier. I think maybe we were designed to be up. Well, I need help on this one.

4. One of the goals was to become financially responsible and aware. I am currently enrolled in a class at my church called "Financial Peace University." Dave Ramsey rocks and I feel enlightened. Finally getting there. Plan to be close to done with my loan this year and live debt free. Woot woot. Working on it. Definately not there yet. BUT sure am learning. The detailed budget is the kicker, stick to it Merea, stick to it!!!!!! Us singles have a hard time with impulse purchases and the "we owe it to ourselves" lie. Here I go, hard things. man.

5. Keep in touch with friends better. that is my next one. Stephanie, what do you think? Have I done better at all? =) and Rachel Marshman, I have been meaning to call you chica!!!!!! I am working on it. ha ha ha.

6. Tap into my inner thespian. It has been peeping out more and more lately, well, it is full blown. I love performing in musicals. I have been in 2 this year. and realizing that I should have been doing this more. I love it.

Do hard things!

Much love from the aspiring thespian, accordian playing, trumpet blowing, dickens caroling, tumor infested, financial guru, early mornin lovin(hating sometimes), ever failing and trying again.... Merea

(the picture after my show the other night, fake eyelashes, oh sweet theater makeup bliss)

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Ecclesiastes: The Wisdom of King Solomon.

We open this weekend! Here is what I have been up to:

Monday, February 16, 2009

Come See the musical I am in...... or just look at the cool pictures.

The pictures turned out interesting. Come see the musical. Ecclesiastes: The Wisdom of King Solomon.

Saturday, January 31, 2009


The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and lifts those who are crushed in spirit.

my heart is heavy for the brokenhearted.

All year long I have been dwelling on the brokenhearted, I even remember praying specifically for brokenhearted people on new year's eve.

In this unpredictable life, when things don't work out like you thought, when you question everything, when your heart breaks in two....

He knows the way you take....(Job 23)

He holds your tears in a bottle...(Psalms)

He is a shield about you and the lifter of your head...(Psalms)

He gives hope...(Romans)

those whose mind is stayed on Him, He gives perfect peace...(Isaiah 26)

So stay your mind on Him dear brokenhearted, fix your eyes on our treasure Jesus. Your strength and your heart may fail, but He is the strength of your heart and your portion forever....

The Lord has promised good to me
His word my hope secures
He will my shield and shelter be
as long as life endures

as long as life endures....

One day, all of this will end, we will remember our tears no more....

Hold on. HOPE ON.....

Monday, January 19, 2009

A couple things....

I was cast in Lifehouse Theater's production "Ecclesiastes." It is a musical and I will be posting more about it later.

the Transformed Conference with Ray Comfort, Todd Friel, Kirk Cameron and Emeal Zwayne was at our church this weekend. It was one of the best conferences I have been to. The speakers are biblical and challenging, and really brought the heat from the pulpit.

Around 2,000 people were at our church on saturday and multiple people commented that this was the most hospitable and servant hearted church they had ever worked with. Praise God! I love our church. Must have some good leaders.........

One is my Dad....

Saturday, January 03, 2009


This new year's eve I went to a happenin party. Swing dancing 30's theme. There was also a time of worship to ring the new year in, and I was able to sing and play the piano in the band. I suppose the highlight of the night for me was one line, in one song we played....

He will wipe away your tears and return your wasted years.... This is our God.

Do you ever feel like you have wasted time? I do.

I hope I focus less on myself, my desires, my longings and my dreams.... and more on others. This is that place that I have wasted an extremely large amount of my time. What do I want to do? Why is nothing happening to me that I want to happen to me? It seems that any deep desire I have is not coming true.

A wise woman, my mother, once told me that pride is selfish focus on yourself. Whether it is puffing yourself up or pitying yourself.

It was my sophomore year of high school. All girls go through a self loathing period in high school in which they think nothing goes their way, everyone is prettier than them, their parents hate them, no boys like them, and the world revolves around them. Don't lie girls, you remember it. I remembering going through one of those self loathing times, and my mom told me, "You know Merea, you're being really prideful right now." WHAT?!!!!!! I hate myself, I'm not prideful!!! lol. Then she gently explained to me my unhealthy fixation on myself and MY life is selfish. I will never forget that conversation as long as I live.

It is sooooo true and we women(I say women because I've never been a man, but I'm sure they are the same) need that reminder so often. Especially in our self-loving, self-worshipping culture.

Christ died for every bitter thought and every evil deed so we have no guilt in life and no fear in death...

May we take captive every thought this year.... and watch God restore the wasted years.....

Happy New Year friends. Thanks for reading....