Monday, January 26, 2009


So, people have been asking about the CD a lot lately, so I thought I'd post something about it here. If you want to order a CD or listen to a song from the CD, go to this link:
It will take you to the Grace Baptist Church homepage. From there you just click the "Charis Music" link at the top of the page and Voila! There you are!

And for everyone who has been with us through this whole process, you will be happy to know that Sheldon Andres became the first "out of country" owner of a Charis CD today. We're in Canada now. :) So thanks Shel!

And thank you to everyone else as well!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Let me introduce the newest members of my family...

This is Kevin. Anna bought him a few days ago and is taking good care of him. I must say that one of the most amusing things ever is to sit and watch someone try to entertain a fish.....

And THIS is a picture of us with our new dorm parents, Joel and Bethany Potter!

With these wonderful people as my adopted family, plus my REAL amazing family at home, and God as my heavenly Father, I couldn't be more happy or blessed!!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Don't you just love it when the light bulb finally comes on?

So, ever since the student leaders arrived at NTBI for this semester, we have undergone some intense training. And between the fact that I was still on California time, I had some insane changes to get used to, and the fact that everything was being thrown at us in one day....I felt stupid and kind of guilty because I just didn't get it. Then we had Student Leader Chapel on tuesday and once again, I didn't get it. They kept talking about my position in Christ, and somehow that was supposed to affect my daily life and help me in dealing with other people and living my life....................................huh?

So today I sat down with my Dean, Shirley, and we started talking it over and I left there with the most enormous grin on my face...I finally got it. So in the few minutes that I have, I'm going to try to sum up some of the things that God blessed me with today.

First of all, I kept hearing our teachers talk about how we are seated in the heaveny places. I have never been so confused in my life. But looking in Ephesians chapter two we see that we were seperated from Christ in our sin. We were dead. But when He took our sin and made us righteous, we were made alive in Christ and were seated with Him! I can't remember what verse says this, but it says that we are in Christ and Christ is in the Father. If we are in Christ and Christ is seated with the Father...where are we seated? Oh wow! And because we are in Christ, God has blessed us with every spiritual blessing. Every one! And since we are in Christ, when God looks at us, what does He see? He sees Christ!

Colossians 3:1-4
"If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on the earth. For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God. When Christ who is your life appears, then you also will appear with him in glory"

This verse was slightly painful. Okay, really painful. Why do we insist on setting our minds on earthly things? Earthly things are dead. Christ IS life! Why isn't my mind continually on things above, the things pertaining to life? Why isn't my mind continually on Christ and His sacrifice and His blessings? Why isn't my mind continually on the amazingness of God Almighty?
In Prophets class, we're studying the book of Isaiah and in Isaiah 2:22, the writer challenges Israel's faith. They were looking to idols and armies and placing their faith and trust in them....but Isaiah says "Stop regarding man in whose nostrils is breath, for of what account is he?" Why trust in those who require breath to live rather than placing your trust in the One who GIVES life? It's so easy to focus on the horizontal aspects of life rather than the vertical aspect. What a shame! Christ has opened the door to so much beauty....I need to make the choice to set my mind on Him. And yes, it is a choice.

There is so much more, but I'm going to end with two more thoughts:

First of all, we were talking in chapel about ceaseless toil verses ignorant rest. Ignorant rest is pretty much thinking that you've learned all that there is to learn and sitting back and being lazy instead of exploring the wonderfulness of God and what He has for us. Ceaseless toil points to the fact that our training is never over. It is endless. And it is a continual, neverending journey toward growth. I often find myself slipping into ignorant rest. It's easy to just adopt the attitude of saying that I've gone to church all my life, I've practically been a Christian forever, and I can answer any question that you throw my way. Looking back on the times when this has been my attitude and recognizing when I start to fall back into it, I am encouraged to press forward. My training doesn't end when I graduate from NTBI. My training doesn't end if I go through the MTC and graduate from there as well. My training doesn't end when I grow old. Training is a lifelong process.....and, my friends, that is not a bad thing. On the contrary, it is one of the most beautiful things to think about. No matter how much I soak in, God always has more.

Second of all, I have been adopted. Apparently, the dorm parents of dorm 330 no longer wanted us. SO we have been adopted by Joel and Bethany Potter. And by being adopted into this family, I have gained two adorable little brothers, Jack (4) and Owen (1). We had so much fun hanging out with the Potters last night! What a blessing it is to know that you are loved. :) So today, I was thinking about it and I was reminded of the fact that we are all adopted by the Father. I never really pondered what a wonderful concept that is. We are adopted. We are accepted in to the family of the Father! He calls us His own! Lovely. :)

Although I am extremely tired, I'm smiling. My heart is full of joy!!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Speaking of Julie........

Have ya'll ever heard of Skype?!?!!? Well if you haven't, you should look it up. Because of Skype, I GOT TO SEE JULIE LAST NIGHT!! Oh my lanta!! I was super excited to talk face to face with a slight delay to my darling Dulie and my Mum. It's amazing ya'll. If you don't have it, find it. Then you can talk to me! haha

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Julie is a friend of mine.....

Little sisters are some of the greatest gifts in the world. My little sister in particular....even though she's bigger than me. :)
I love you Jules!!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Exhausted and slightly stressed, but ever so blessed. :)

Hey ya'll, remember me? Yeah, it's Grace! Grace Baldwin! It's been a while, I know, but it has been one of the craziest weeks of my entire life. Christmas was packed full of action, from Grandma's surgery, to showing Aidy ALL the sights of Los Angeles, to attempting to see everyone I needed to see in the last 3 days I was home. (That last idea So much for having a relaxing break! haha It was fabulous though and I wouldn't have left out any of it! I thought, "hmmm I'm I'll sleep on the plane and relax on my first few days back. Surely THEN I'll be rested up and ready for class!" Wrong again. Between snoring men and super talkative women...3 rows behind sleeping was accomplished on either flight. Plus I had to lug my guitar everywhere I went. I mastered the art of looking like a damsel in distress and sweetly asking the stronger male passengers to throw the guitar in the super high compartment that I couldn't even reach if I wanted to... Anyway, I made it to school and COMPLETELY unpacked. Remember that part about the'll be important later. So, between getting unpacked and having visitors in my dorm (who I was extremely glad to see!), I got to bed late and had to be up super early in the morning. No resting was done there. NTBI had 1 day to train their new student we sat there from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. It was in the middle of this fabulously crammed day of intense training that my dean, Amanda, took me aside and let me know that they were moving me to another room. Between loosing my amazing roomies and the fact that I had already COMPLETELY UNPACKED (told ya it would come in handy)...I was slightly distressed. Okay, maybe greatly distressed. I'm not goint to lie...I got a little choked up at having to leave Katie, Angie, and Kaylee. I wasn't given any reason, I was just told to go. So I packed up and moved to a dorm aaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaall the way down the hall where I spend 3 depressing days completely alone. I was bummed and lonely, super tired and insanely busy all at once. I marvel at the fact that I'm still alive. Well, enough with the pity party. I was finally given the reason for my move and that was that I had been elected to be the new RA for that dorm. As RA I'm pretty much responsible for the dorm and those who live in it. Needless to say, I was a little scared, overwhelmed, stunned, humbled, terrified, nervous, lost, helpless....and the list goes on and on. It was in this time that God's faithfulness reached out of His Scripture and out of the lives of the wonderful people at this school and wrapped itself around me. I think everyone could immediately tell how terrified I was and several of the staff members took time to pull me aside whenever they had the chance to talk to me, hear me out, pray for me, and give me advice. I was so encouraged and blessed!! I was still nervous when the girls started arriving. This is a small school and everyone pretty much knows everyone. However there were about 5 girls here that I didn't really get to know last semester....and 3 of them were going to be in my dorm. None of them are freshmen. That scared me even more. 2 of them are in my class and the third girl is a senior. I thought "Why would they put a Sophmore over a Senior? Are they crazy?" I felt completely inadequate to be any kind of leader to a group of girls who were either on the same level as me or more advanced. What in the world would I have to offer them?! I got a letter in my mailbox from one the Senior RA's named Marley. I was so blessed. She had been in the same boat when she first became an RA and she felt just like I did. Then she told me that one thing she learned was that we don't NEED to have anything to offer anyone. We are all sisters in Christ and there is no concept of "levels" in the family of Christ. We are all in the same boat, all learning, all sitting at the feet of the same Master. The only thing that I could even begin to offer anyone is the love of Christ and all that He has done. Wow! What a relief! It isn't resting on my shoulders! Christ already took it on His shoulders and freed me from any and all burdens that I stupidly choose to take upon myself. What a good God we serve!
SO! As my girls have arrived and I'm getting to know them more and more, I realize the faithfulness of God once more. They are a group of lovely ladies and we are having a blast! I'll attach some pics at the end that'll give you an idea of how well we get along. :)
I'm learning a TON in classes, but I'll have to save those thoughts for next time. As for now, if you haven't heard a word from me since I left California, it's because being an RA comes with a lot of responsibility, I'm now a librarian and have been in training for that, I'm on the music team, aaaaaaaaaaaaaand I have to read the entire book of Deuteronomy, memorize 10 lengthy verses, and write a paper on the Mosaic Covenant by monday...all for one class. There is homework in the other classes as well.
So I'm going to sign out for now. I know I wrote a novel and I give a gold star to each person that makes it through the entire thing. For now, I'm gonna get back to homework and staying warm. Just a sidenote for all of you in your lovely warm weather........with windchill, it was about -29 today. Without windchill it was a balmy -15. You know it's bad when each window has a thick layer of ice on it.......INSIDE. Nice. :)
Love you all!! I'll be calling soon. :) And thanks for my first letter of the semester Amy!!!

First dorm date. We went to get ice cream in -8 degree weather. Brilliant.

My glamor shot.


Rachel! a.k.a. RaPo

Anna! haha

And here we are! Dorm 330! And yes...I am a good three inches shorter than anyone else there.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

On my way back! :)

Please be praying for me as I fly back tomorrow morning! I'm a little worried about transporting my guitar...I paid a lot of money for it and would be devestated if anything happened to it! We'll see. I should be back to blogging more often when I get back to school. I'll miss you all but I'll see you in May! Love ya'll!!!

The most adorable pic on the face of the planet!!

You can't tell me that this isn't the cutest kid ever! Look at his lil chucks! All I can say is that if I am ever blessed with a little guy of my own, you'll know he's mine by his chucks. They'll probably match mine. lol

Picture by Brian Khang

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Slowly climbing back onto the face of the earth....

.....not an easy thing to do when you've fallen completely off of it, as I have. After weeks of entertaining, sight-seeing, eating, eating some more, going, going, going, and going...I'm taking an entire day, sitting around and doing nothing but talking to my mom and watching chick flicks.
La vie est belle.........mais je pense que je suis morte.