Sunday, October 30, 2011

Comprehensive Exams

In my Professional Counseling (emphasis School setting) Masters program we don't write a thesis. We take a comprehensive exam instead. Yeah, it's a big deal.

I take my comprehensive exam this week.

I have already cried.....but now that is over I should not be going for the extreme dramatics again;)

Friday at 8:00 I would appreciate prayers from friends and strangers. Mainly, I pray that I will be calm and can access all of the information that I have bouncing around in my head.

It's the home stretch and I am going back and restudying material I have been working with for months. It's the home stretch and I wish I had no other commitments except studying.....but that is not the case, so I will need to manage my time wisely.

This test is the last large factor between me and graduation. Sure there will be a few Spring classes and many Internship hours.....but this test is the last real deal.

Here we go!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

In my Journal

Today is unique! It has never occurred before and it will never be repeated. At midnight it will end, quietly, suddenly, totally. Forever. But the hours between now and then are opportunities with eternal possibilities. 
Charles R. Swindoll
* Quote included in my journal from last October.*

I enjoy writing. Mainly I write for myself. One of the things that came out of my FSU experience was discovering the joy of consistent journaling. By consistent I mean a few times a month....nothing fancy. I can honestly say that maybe keeping a journal found me before the storm of life rocked my world. And I hope to never let go.

Going back and reading said journals is always a good thing. Let me say that again....going back and reading the thoughts, prayers, and meditations of my heart is ALWAYS a GOOD thing!

So much has changed and yet so much has stayed the same. I see over and over a faithful God who has established me in a faithful life.

My journal is overflowing with family, personal issues, friends, global issues and more. It is both common and unique. It covers the depths and the heights of this life of Sabrina.

If I did not have these written moments.....snippets from a full life, who knows what things I would actually remember. But having journals makes me see moments in my life for what they were. The questions, the waiting, the tears, the smiling, the hoping, the laughing, the confusion, the problems, and the travels. All of this makes up the journey of a woman growing in faith. A 26 year old who has not been afraid to write down her life so that she can remember from how far she has come.

There are a LOT of things coming 'round the bend. I have this feeling and so I keep writing in my journal about dreams and wishes for myself and the ones I love the most.

Thank you God for community, for growth, new and old, travels, love, faith, hope strength, and the unique qualities that make me.....well me:)
Sabrina Stewart April 2011

Friday, October 21, 2011

Friday Tunes

It's Friday and this song gets me excited for all that can be accomplished in just one day! Sound familiar......yeah it's from Hercules! I have fond memories of watching Hercules with my 3rd grade babies during our unit on Greece.....happy thoughts:)

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Out of nothing

On Sunday my preacher, fresh off of a months long trip to England was refreshed and renewed. His message to us was full of a lot of wonderful and needed reminders. I was deeply engrossed and so thankful for how God used him to speak some simple truths that are always worth repeating.

One of them was something along the lines of.....If we think we know all about God, or understand him completely....we are simply wrong. Amen for that reminder! I often want to know everything, but God is massive and mighty and even though I am made in his likeness.... understanding all of his ways and how he works....this brain just can not even comprehend the great, grand complexities of my amazing God.

I needed to hear that, because as I mature in Christ I think I can sometimes lean back and take this view that is not nearly grateful enough for all that God has doing.....and will continue to do. Not knowing every nook and cranny of God calls me back to him again and again because I can know that there is always something more. That he is always more than I think, more than I can even imagine.

Anyways, as I washed dishes at 5:30am on a typical Wednesday, a thought came to me. It was inspired by the sermon two weeks ago. God is always working, whether we can see or experience the results in our own personal lives or not. I was standing at the sink praying and then it hit me. If I believe that God created the world and life as we know it (which I do) out of nothing. Well, then I need to believe that he can provide, heal, help, restore, give hope, renew, save, reveal and basically do ANYTHING out of nothing as well.

I love that thought! Sabrina, it does not have to look like anything for God to make something out of it. It can be a mess and completely convoluted and God can straighten it out to perfection. It can seem as if something will never ever change...but hold on girlie because God can change it in seconds.

Like the title of this post says.....Out of Nothing. Out of Nothing God shows us even more about who he is. When there seems like nothing, don't discredit the situation because the secret is there is almost always the seed of something growing in this life. Peace is coming sooner than we think for troubled times. Joy is creeping up on those in despair. Hope is knocking at the door and the discouraged just need strength to open that door. Both Great and Small things are getting ready to happen for those who have been playing the waiting game. It makes me smile just thinking about how God can humble us when he produces something out of nothing. I am in awe that God loves me and still is powerful enough to bring change and growth into this life that I bind up in personal limitations and fear. It is a complex puzzle, and I can't admit to having it all worked out.....but the fact that I am willing to grow and be open to new experiences in life is a blessing. If you are seeking more of can find him in that place. At the corner of growth and wisdom. At the places where true faith in the unseen meets times of something being made out of nothing.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Tallahassee To Do

I get to visit Tally for a looong weekend in November!! I just love my old stomping grounds. The perks of UGA getting the whole, entire Thanksgiving week off!

Here is what I hope To Do:
walk at Lake Ella
visit Roberts and craft with the classes of my teacher friends (a personal fave!)
FSU football babyyyyyy (Homecoming edition)
Twilight Breaking Dawn Part 1......yep I will get a group together to see the movie. I have made it this far....I have to finish them.
Sunday worship at Timberlane and fellowship with good friends
Country Dollar shopping!
visiting Julie at her school and crafting with her babies
seeing friends and their ever expanding families
Downtown Getdown to get in the proper Seminole Spirit!

It already looks like my Friday-Tuesday will be full. But with all of the above activities to look forward to, this grad student is dreaming of Florida and Tally in particular:)
It's a brand new week. Make it wonderful!

Friday, October 14, 2011

Friday Tunes

If this does not get you awake and ready to handle your Friday, I am not sure what will. Beautiful hymn and Carrie just belts it out with so much passion! I LOVE it:) Praise God for Friday.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Ladies/Girl's/Women's Prayer Group 3

 This summer I reflected on the blessed ladies' Prayer group experiences that I have had in my life. Thoughts on Prayer group 1 can be found here and Prayer group 2 can be found here.

 This summer I started meeting with my 3rd Prayer group. It was a good thing. I love when I can say that! God bought us together through the summer and gave us a space to share our lives. Because that is what prayer group really is.....a time for women of common faith to share their lives (aka the things closest to their minds and hearts). Each week our numbers would shift but it was truly a beautiful time that gave me perspective, peace and passion. Three things I always need.

Fast forward to today and 3 of the original group still meet to share and pray. It is something that I love and I am quickly learning that these women are friends that I love. Because you see, you can sit in a pew and not get close to anyone (physically, spiritually, or emotionally). But I have learned that you cannot go to prayer group and be "not there". The material for the group is written on our hearts. It is the images and concerns and praises that swirl around in our heads. And here is the secret.....come a little closer so that you don't miss it. Those things on our hearts and minds, they need to be released, and shared, and prayed over with fellow believers.

I am thankful for the abundant ways in which God is working in our lives. I am happy that I have Christian ladies who are open to sharing and caring. Our little group is one newly married, one single, and one who is dating. So in my book the perspective and ratio is perfect. I have come to crave this time with this group and I hope throughout my life I never lose sight of the way that God has shown me that works for gather with women, to be there with friends, to look to God and open our lives and mouths to share, to grow and reach and extend past my selfishness to a greater and better way of living. 

Amen for what God has done. Amen for what God is doing. Amen for what God will do. 

Sunday, October 9, 2011


With life so full here in Athens, I don't want to forget my blog that I love. One day I will look into printing it out and making a book. I hear you can do that! It helps me to remember to blog with my Friday Tunes segment (that I love!). Also, just the random life events that pop in my head and won't leave. But recently my posts on Simple and Beauty have given me new life in my writing. Today I thought I would share what makes Joy in my life.

Joy is God's redeeming love for me and always, always striving for growth.

Fall, and possible river cruises in Chattanooga sound joyful.

May 11th......oh yeah that will be a day bursting with joy and praise!!!!

Smiles, kindness, and courtesy shared with strangers and friends creates joy.

Pictures of the "good times" resonate with the joy in my heart.

Faithfulness, commitment, and perseverance are joy spelled differently!

Ya'll already know, phone calls to my friends are some of the purest moments of joy for me:)

Jacksonville, Tallahassee, Orlando, Atlanta and Athens have each held joyful moments in my life.

Arts and crafts is joy.

My crazy, silly, adorable sister and our relationship brings me joy....most of the time.

My precious, delightful, unique, and loving parents are my joy....whether we be near or far.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Friday Tunes

You don't even have to thank me for this funny little video.

Fall is the time of year when football is in the air and the marching bands of America are in full gear.

I hope you get a laugh out of this like I did. I've got a wedding and cookout this weekend. Congratulations Lauren! GO FSU & UGA.  Yay for no school or work!

Thursday, October 6, 2011


A little while ago I wrote a simple post on Simple things. Well the sister of Simple is here are some ways I see Beauty in life. This kind of thing is a good exercise in remembering all the great things in life.

Beauty is laughter tears welling up in your eyes.

The sun gleaming off of a field of wildflowers is beautiful.

Spur of the moment prayers that are 100% thanks have their root in beauty.

I have to believe that the future is a thing of beauty just waiting to be discovered.

Getting to really know yourself, your motivations, fears, and wishes is contentment wrapped in beauty.

A steadfast, Godly woman who embraces harmony and grace is absolute beauty. (I want this kind of beauty!)

Family, oh family, yeah family is a beautiful gift!

Fresh blueberries and whipped cream tastes beautiful.

Gathering with friends and just taking time to celebrate (thanks for the reminders Annie) is joyous beauty.

Pride and Prejudice is a beautiful, beautiful story and book.

Beauty is everywhere. It lives in our hearts and souls and then radiates forth into the world and connects with the beauty that already exists and is waiting to be discovered.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Cooking & Compassion

NPR are my treasure!

This article on the power and purpose of food in forging relationships and healing was wonderful.

The title is Showing Compassion through the Gift of Food.....yeah you know you wanna hop over there and read.


Monday, October 3, 2011


When this old world starts getting you down......oooops excuse my singing;)
Really, though, when grad school is acting like grad school. And the budget is a little tight. And my stress is a tad peaked. Well I need something to help me escape. And since I am tied to Athens, mostly, I have to find small ways to re-energize.
Enter crafting!
Last, last weekend was Pints and Paints. You can see my beautiful painting below! The whole experience was FUN! I am in love with it and hope to go again in October. The owner was this super nice, chatty lady and Stacey and I had a great time chilling together. Painting is pretty relaxing I find.

Then this weekend I went to SC and had a fabulous time crafting. We made Fall cards. AND felt flower pins! I was so proud of the ones I made for myself and my mama. You can see one example below. Two pics in one post....don't start getting spoiled;) I am just finally figuring out how to use more of my iphone!

Saturday, October 1, 2011


It is simply wonderful to have a huge family.

I am the most simple when I spend time walking in the Fall and praying along my journey.

Simple beauty to me is the steadfast person who shows love in many situations.

Cupcakes and cookies are delicious in a simple fashion;)

Simple smiles are heartwarming and truly quite inspirational.

I am a basic and simple texter. Nothing fancy.

A simple home filled with peace, and space, and abundant life is what I want.

Simple faith moves mountains.

Simple resentment keeps you stuck.

The joy of children has got to be one of the most simple ways that God shows himself each day.

I am simply living the dream right now......and leaning to roll with the punches.

I am growing up because I realize that simple is really not all that simple sometimes.