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Tomorrow is my official last day as an intern with Cru at Ohio University.

 

I’ve tried to sit down and write this post a hundred times. I’ve been keeping a page in my journal entitled “Things I’ve Learned as an Intern” to try and help me catch the ideas when they come. I’ve spent an entire afternoon contemplating the year and processing through it with the Lord. And the conclusion I’ve come to is this:

 

I can’t sum this year up.

 

I can’t wrap it up in a blog post. I can’t make a “10 Things I’ve Learned” list. I can’t even write about one thing I’ve learned. I just can’t.

 

This year has been too full, too hard, too wonderful, too everything.

 

And as much as I want to communicate how much this year has meant to me, how much the Lord has taught me, I can’t.

 

Because this year I’ve truly walked with the Lord. Not perfectly, and not constantly, but closely. Day by day, hour by hour, moment by moment. This year has forced me to do something I’ve always longed to – rely on the Lord as if my very life depends on it. Because it does. And I do.

 

This year, for a million reasons, I’ve pulled up close to Him. And He has become as near to me as my own heart, as close and as constant as my breath.

 

I’m not sure why, and I don’t know how, but something this year changed me.

 

I have found Him, and I have drawn close. And the joy is thick, and sweet, and constant – no matter my circumstances.

I am so profoundly thankful.

“Bless the Lord, O my soul! And all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the Lord, o My soul!” – Psalm 103 ESV

As I am almost done with my third week “on campus” here as an intern with Cru at OU, I thought it was about time for an update on what I’m learning.

I’ve been doing a lot. Handing out questionnaires, making a billion phone calls, sitting down to meet new students and share the Gospel, leading Bible studies, making flyers, formulating “social media strategy plans,” going to house parties, and on and on. From 9 am to 10 pm every day, my mind is buzzing with the billion tasks I have to do, and the excitement/exhaustion that is meeting a 1,000 new people and having the opportunity to share Jesus with them all. But even in all that activity, I’ve really only learned two things.

1) I have no idea what I’m doing.

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I keep telling people this, and they keep laughing. But really. I’m serious. Most of the time I wake up in the morning and beg God for grace. Even though I worked in the ministry as a student throughout my four years, being on staff is a whole different beast. There’s so much behind the scenes that I didn’t know even existed that must be done. So many small details, so many strategies – my head spins. A student asks me a question and the best I can say is, “Man, I don’t know…I can find out!”
At the same time as I’m figuring out my job, I’m trying to figure out how to be an adult in general. How does my health insurance work? (My current theory is maaagic.) Is there any way to avoid paying my rent and my credit card bill and my gas bill in the same week? (Holy money-suckers, batman! Yikes!) Why is the bank only open during hours that I’m at work? (Why, bank?? Why?) WHERE CAN ONE FIND A TOILET PAPER ROLL TO FIT A CIRCA-1970’S HOLDER?? But really. How does this all work?

The second thing I’ve learned, however, seems to fit nicely with the first thing I’ve learned.

2) God has a pretty good idea of what he’s doing.

Somehow, even in the midst of what feels like a whole lot of failure, everything is getting done. My bills are paid, and I have enough to eat. Women are coming to Bible study, and accepting Christ, and learning more about the Lord. I haven’t managed to crash our website yet and I’ve only sent the wrong file to the printer once.

God has got this under control. I just have to keep remembering that my calling isn’t to be perfect, but to be faithful. Everything else is up to Him.

I definitely don’t rest perfectly in that fact everyday, and there are still a lot of things that seem unresolved (for instance, Clay and I still haven’t found someone to marry us….*sigh*) but I know that somehow, He’ll see this worked out too. Resting in that fact today, and for the rest of days.

I usually like to end with a profound quote or a good song, so today I will leave you with these wise words to sum up my feelings.

We’re happy, free, confused and lonely at the same time. It’s miserable and magical….Hey, I don’t know about you, but I’m feeling 22!

…Don’t judge me for quoting Taylor swift. She’s actually nailed how it feels to be 22, I think.

will update this blog regularly. I will, I will! I know I’m typically a pretty sporadic blogger, but this year I’m hoping very much to be different. I want to use this blog to update my family, friends, and ministry partners about my year as an Intern. Also, my big sister essentially threatened me with eternal nagging if I don’t, so there’s that. Let the update commence.

1. I finished my support raising on time! Woo! It was a crazy whirlwind. For those of you who weren’t keeping track, on July 1st, I had 36% of my support in. By August 1st, I had about 95%. Crazy. Insane. God is so good. It literally came pouring in from all directions, and it was all I could do to keep up. I wish I could physically hug each and every person who helped make that happen!

2. I moved back to Athens. This life change was also a crazy whirlwind. I didn’t set a hard and fast date for moving, simply because it was so hard to know when I’d be at 100% supported. And, in accordance with Cru policy, until I was at 100%, I would not be allowed to “report to campus” (aka go to work.) My job, until that point, would be to stay home and finish my financial support raising, which is most efficiently done from my parent’s home in Dayton. So I stayed. And suddenly, my support went from 80% to 95% in a week, and I was looking at having to move – quick. I had a wedding to go to first, though. Then, while at that wedding, I got word that some furniture I was poised to inherit needed to be picked up – now.
And thus, I found myself in a car at 6:30am with Clay, making a journey that looked something like this.

Screen shot 2013-08-23 at 10.17.03 PM

551 miles. 15 hours. 1 car. 1 UHaul. Way too much gas. A whole lot of exhaustion.

But, at the end of it all, I was moved into my new apartment in Athens, and started to settle in and get ready to start Staff Planning.

3. Staff Planning & Intern Life began. Staff planning happened this past week, and for the first time, I really did anything that made me feel like “Cru Staff.” I was given my list of responsibilities. This year, I will disciple (mentor) a handful of women, lead an Action Group (upperclassmen Bible study), help run the movement at Hocking College (a nearby school), and run the ministry’s communications (i.e. anything social media, photography, videography, design, and printing.) Whew. I’m tired from just typing that.

At Staff Planning we planned for this upcoming year. year. I prayed for it, strategized, took notes, and mostly sat quietly, feeling pretty intimidated. I didn’t I give much thought to what it would feel like to be the only first year intern, but if I had I don’t think I would have come close to what I really feel now. It’s such a mixture. On one hand, I’m so happy to be here, and so excited. On the other, I’m ridiculously nervous.  I’ve been literally thrown into “adult life” in the course of a week (it’s not an easy thing after 19 years of being a student.)  I’m working alongside people I highly admire, and I hate to disappoint. I’m a perfectionist with a performance-driven bent. I’m an introvert who struggles to make deep friendships. And I’m far, far away from almost every friend to whom I feel close enough to bare my soul.

And we haven’t even started to work with students yet! Yup, feeling just a liiiittle bit overwhelmed.

I’m trying to take big breaths, pray, and remember that it’s ok to cry when I really miss my friends, my dogs, and my mom. The next 12 months are going to be a great big adventure, and I really want to fully live each and every minute of them. I don’t want to miss out on a single minute of this crazy, beautiful, wonderful life that the Lord has prepared for me.

“…now at last they were beginning Chapter One of The Great Story, which no one has ever read, which goes on forever, in which every chapter is better than the last.” – The Chronicles of Narnia.

Yay! Moving!

Yay! Moving!

New Apartment!

New Apartment!

Just another day with Cru Staff - at our annual "Staff Retreat."

Just another day with Cru Staff – at our annual “Staff Retreat.”

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Past Musings