[This post was written by Alaina, a freshman majoring in dietetics... Here she's pictured with three (or four?) other girls at our recent barn dance!]
Going into college, I was told that making genuine, kind-hearted friends (who are good influences) would be the hardest thing I would do. Seeing as U of I is so huge, and known as one of the top party schools in the nation, I guess you could say I was pretty terrified about finding the right crowd.
Especially because only months before I was scheduled to leave for college, I accepted Christ as my savior. I needed friends that would care not only for me, but for my newly budding spiritual growth as well.
So, to recap: I wanted to find Christian friends at a public, partying university… ASAP.
Ya right… was the only thing I could think.
So, I prayed about it. I prayed that God would guide my steps and lead me to friends and a community that would glorify Him; I placed all my trust and cast all my anxieties on Him… And I waited.
Then, like God was laying a map down for me to follow, I stumbled upon Navs on Quad day. I recalled a recommendation to join them, so I practically ran over to sign up.
The group’s enthusiasm and hearts for Christ were so evident. I was sure that this was where God wanted me to be.
Months later, I can say (with a relaxed, joy-filled heart) that Navs has been my family away from home. Everyone here is so accepting and I feel like not only am I cared about, but my spiritual journey is cared about as well. From small group Bible studies to Nav Night to just hanging out, Navs is all about what I've been searching for; "to know Christ and make Him known."
The Lord has truly blessed me with such an enriched environment and with all kinds of people to continue to grow closer to Him. Today, I sing praises around campus! I know I will continue to grow closer to God because here, I can!
Thanks be to God for my blessed soul!!
I cannot wait to see what more He has in-store!
“You have turned my mourning into joyful dancing.
You have taken away my clothes of mourning and clothed me with joy,
that I might sing praises to you and not be silent.
O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever!”
This year, we're shaking it up a bit!
Instead of doing our normal thing, we've decided to take the "choose your own adventure" route for upperclassmen Bible Studies.
There are three different choices for men's and women's Bible studies to choose from - all with different content and prep expectations.
Please, check them out, submit your form, and choose your own adventure!
Hey you fellow Navigators students! We've designed two new T-shirts for this Fall! Order however many you want (as long as you plan on paying for them!) and we'll get them to you this fall.
Remember, if you're planning on helping out with Fall Launch (e-mail Lauren@illininavs.org if you want to get on the contact list), we'd LOVE for you to have a Navs t-shirt to wear on Quad Day.
Go to our Navigators T-shirts Fall 2014 link if you'd like to order a t-shirt.
BECKIE IS ON MISSION IN NORWAY THIS SUMMER! HERE IS HER FIRST UPDATE!
I arrived with the directors' family on May 27. We spent a few days in Bergen getting over jet lag and reuniting all the Norwegian Nav staff and friends. They have all been so generous to host us and now to host the team too! Then we went up to Skjolden to open up the hostel and clean it up. We arrived just in time for the Skjolden Culture Days fest and had a big, delicious breakfast along the fjord. All the people of Skjolden were out so it was a great time of meeting and greeting. Everyone under the age of 65 know English. Some seemed a little shy to comunicate with me but others I spoke with had flawless English. A small bunch of highschool/college age guys and gals just moved into the house next door to our hostel! We look forward to having BBQs and watching the World Cup together. Skjolden is the most beautiful place I have ever been to. There are 7 waterfalls that we can see from our hostel.
(I took a little jog over to Scotland for a few days to visit a friend who spent a year in our Navs ministry while she studied abroad at the U of I. It was sooo lovely to see her- I think we were mutually encouraged. I also meet 2 Nav staff persons while I was in Edinburgh and Glasglow. It was neat to hear their perspective and experience with ministry in Scotland.)
On Wednesday the rest of the team arrived: Cory, Justin, and Nick (all from the state of CO) and Rachel (Ohio). It's been fun to see the team dynamics unfold and personalities shine. Everyone has quite different personalities and are at different places in their walk with Jesus. And two Norwegian students will join us in just a few weeks from now: Martin and Lorleley.
Please pray for Cory and I as the men and women team leaders that we will serve the team with a selfless love. And for the team to have short accounts and to be open with our true thoughts and emotions. There are some strong personalities. We went on an intense hike today up Ulriken, a great team building exercise/challenge which showed some true colors. :)
Pray for opportunities to connect with the youth (high school, college, young adults) in Skjolden. I believe God gave us these neighbors for a reason.
Pray for all the final details to get worked out to visit a refugee camp in Voss for a week. What exactly we'll do, how we'd all get there, where we would stay are all getting worked out now.
Praise God for his creative beauty of people and land. Oh my! I'm excited to see why God brought this group of people to Norway for such a time as this...
It might be different
We want to involve our ministry partners, U of I parents, and other interested friends in what God is doing here! We write to bring God praise - and to encourage YOU!