Hello everyone! Thank you so much for checking out my blog and staying up to date with me in Chicago. I wanted to give a brief update about my blog moving forward.
Looking back, my blog mostly resembles a journal of my time here in Chicago and it has been really hard for me to make time to write up posts almost daily. Therefore, starting this week I am going to be posting fewer posts on here and will be focusing on highlights of my time and things I have learned or struggled with while on mission. I will continue to post some pictures on here, but to see more visit my Facebook page or my photo album on Facebook.
There are also two new pages on my website that can be found in the menu at the top of the page. The first is a page called Prayer List, where I am keeping a list of all the people I have met in the city of Chicago and held conversations with. Along with a first name I have a small description of what I learned from them or about them. The second page is called More Student Blogs, where I have created a table of all the other blogs students are keeping while here in Chicago. I also have links to their blogs on the page so you can quickly jump over to their site and check out their blogs.
A final small change is that the pages for My Calling and My Goal have now been combined into the My Calling page.
Thank you again for continuing to support and pray for me and everyone on this trip. The past two weeks have been amazing and I cannot wait to see where God takes us next.
Saturday morning Sunrise:
With the pretty free weekend coming up I want to try and start running again. Friday morning I woke up to go running at 9 with my friend John. We ran to the fountain and then along the coast to the aquarium and planetarium. We had some pretty great views on the run and we thought it would be cool sometime to wake up early and run to see the sunrise over the lake. We got back around 11 and I got some lunch before spending some quiet time with the Lord. I looked and saw that the sunrise is at 5:14am tomorrow…dang, I don’t think I’ll be able to wake up that early to see the sunrise. Not long after that I got a message from someone on mission asking people to walk her to the union station tomorrow to catch her bus at 4:45am. Well, I guess I am going to be able to see the sunrise after all! I got to work a little bit on my summer online class before a bunch of us met to go to the beach. We got to the beach around 6ish and went into the lake, played some spike ball, Frisbee, and watched the sunset into the city. From out in the water the sunset looked amazing! Then we all headed back after dark and got some subway. I went to the sky lounge to see what everyone was up to before heading to bed early. Continue reading
Today I get to go back to campus for disciple time and for sharing. While here I got some pretty nice views of the city and the campus. I got to talk to this one guy named Mahesh. It was a very tough conversation. He enjoyed blurring out all the religions of the world and seeing how they all pointed to being nice to others. He then came to the realization that the only point of living was Karma and that everyone’s life ends at 0 on his Karma scale. It was still great to hear what he thought of and how he looks at life. After lunch I went out with Clay and he walked me through how he likes to use Perspective cards, which was nice to see. This is definitely the tool I have the hardest time using. While we were out we got to see some awesome views from atop a building on campus. We didn’t find anyone to talk to before we had to meet back up so we hung out at the meeting place and just talked about our times at INDYCC. After campus I hung out at home before we had our family dinner. Continue reading
Chopped Final Creations:
10 second Video of the Judging:
Today I woke up and realized…I ran out of underwear. I was supposed to go to campus today to share since I am not working, but since I don’t have any clean underwear I have to do laundry. I get out of bed late and then go to start my laundry. I come back up and make some breakfast. Then I go to switch loads and return to my room for quiet time with the Lord. I spent a lot of this quiet time pondering and talking to God instead of reading the Bible today but I felt so much better after just sitting in silence and thinking. After the laundry was done I brought it back into my room and finished up my quiet time. By this time it is like noon so I decide I should take a shower and get ready for the day. Continue reading
So today I get to start working at Chick-Fil-A in the kitchen. My shift starts at 9 am and I am there just a little earlier than that so I may put my stuff in the lockers before clocking in for work. Today both Naomi and I were being trained in the back of the kitchen. We learned how to toast the buns and put the pickles on the buns, work the machines that cooked the chicken, make the fries and see how long they should stay out before being thrown away, as well as a trash run. After the training, I did the machines the rest of the day and Naomi did the buns and pickles. The lunch rush came and made the work become more fast paced. It made the time fly by though. First time I looked at the clock it was 12:50 and I am only on until 2 today. At the end of my shift I was making a trash run and this guy walked up to me and asked me if I knew how to get to Macy’s. I told him it was my first day on the job and that I was not from around there so I had no idea. He began to walk away and said “Jesus loves you”, to which I responded “He loves you too which is why I am here”. He stopped and I began to tell him how I was there on mission to spread the Gospel to those in Chicago. He started talking to me about some of the Christian artists he liked and walked with me to the dumpster on the side of the building. His name was George and he pulled out his phone and started playing music from it in hopes I would recognize it. I didn’t know any of his music as he was 75 years old and liked music from his younger ages and I didn’t start listening to Christian music until about 3 years ago. Continue reading
Today is our first free day this trip! This is also the first day of 90+ degrees outside! Many went to the beach to hang out and play but I was so exhausted that I took the day off, from almost everything! And it was glorious. I woke up early but refused to get out of bed until about 11:30ish. My roommates and I hung out around the lofts and played Chinese checkers until James came to visit. Then we talked about potentially watching a movie on the day off. We decided to watch Now You See Me 2 around 5. I really liked the movie, I haven’t seen the first one but it wasn’t hard to pick up the second one at all. Afterwards my roommates and I stopped at Target to pick up some more food so we could all pitch in and make a large meal for the night. We made Pizza, Tortillas, Green Beans and Mac and Cheese. Then we learned of an online version of Mafia called Town of Salem and so we spent the rest of the night playing that game. It was a very relaxed and lazy day but it was so worth it.
Movie Theater area:
Today I am going back to campus and will spend half of my time talking to people and half the time with my discipler. We go to campus at 11 and I walk around with Kyle, my discipler for this summer. We spend about an hour talking with two people on campus before going to lunch. First we got to talk to Mustafa, who is a professor at the school. He grew up in Palestine and it was really cool talking to him and learning about his experiences traveling around the world and where he came from spiritually. The second person we talked to was named Mossaid. He was also an international student. We got talking to him and he said he really like living in Chicago but also really likes Columbus. Then I asked him when he has been to Columbus and he said he has been there a couple times and would be going to Columbus this fall for school. I asked him where in Columbus he was going to be studying and he said The Ohio State University! I got really excited and told him that’s where I go to school! We continued talking until he had to go to class but then I got his number and email in hopes that I could meet up with him again this summer and maybe even in the fall at OSU! Continue reading
Today my group is meeting at 10 to go to the UIC campus. I have to run to Chick-fil-a to drop off paperwork at 10am so I will be meeting them later at the campus. Ryan and I drop off our paperwork and then he heads to University of Chicago as I go with Jay to UIC. We arrive on campus and go to the food court. I wait there and eat my lunch until my group meets to switch partners. I am paired up with Cheyenne, and we go off to talk to someone. Neither she or I have used Soularium before to initiate a conversation but she was with someone who used them earlier that day, so we decided to give them a try. Soularium is a deck of cards with pictures on them. We give them the cards and ask them questions where they can select pictures that describe their answer to the question. See more about Soularium here. Continue reading
Today’s main goal is to find a job in Chicago for the rest of this summer. Some students have jobs already lined up before they got here but most of us are going out job hunting today. We had a quick meeting at 8am for those looking for jobs and then we left to go into the city. I have an interview at Chick-fil-A today at 2pm so I am more or less just going to be walking around for the first part of the day. I go with another guy named Josh to Navy Pier and find out that everything there is closed until about 10am. Since it is about 9 when we get there he decides to wait until the shops open up. I decide to head back into the city and walk around a little bit. I discover a faster way to get from the pier to the red line instead of just walking. Once I arrive back in the room I hang out with some of my roommates who stayed in to apply online to jobs. Soon after, Ryan comes back from his interview from Chick-fil-A and says he got the job! We make some lunch then I get ready to leave for my interview. As I go to the interview, I arrive a little early so I hang out in a nearby Dunkin Donuts (there’s got to be one on every corner it seems). I am feeling nervous and excited for the interview as I sit there drinking my chocolate milk I got from Dunkin. Yummm! I go to the interview and it is a really nice and decent sized Chick-fil-A. At the end of the interview the interviewer gives me a job and returns with some paperwork for me to fill out! Yay! I’m employed! So I head back to the Lofts and fill out the paperwork. Then we go to the Church we went to on Sunday where we have Portillo’s hot dogs and some other food. It was really good. Then we have our first training session while we are here in Chicago, along with some worship and a testimony. We also got to see the three winners of the roommate video challenge. Unfortunately ours didn’t make the cut but it was really cool to see what others came up with! This meeting is a little longer than normal because it is the first week but we leave and head home at around 10pm. When we get back I am exhausted. We were going to try this new game called Betrayal but I ended up going to bed a little early tonight. God provided me with a job today, tomorrow He takes me to a campus to hopefully meet and get to talk to some students during their day.
This morning breakfast was provided for the meeting we had which started our day. We went through a lot of the logistics of the summer, talked about the city, and about what we will be doing in the city. Then we were free for lunch so we went and ate with another room for lunch. After that we all met in the lobby and got into teams for our scavenger hunt in the city. We were in teams of about 6 including one staff member. Using the public transportation we made our way over town taking pictures of items on the list and posting them to Instagram. Halfway through we decided to just explore the city and have some fun so we went to Navy Pier and Millennium Park to just look around. At 5 we decided to go get dinner as a group and went to a place called Quartino Ristorante and the food they had there was family portions to share. We got a couple different items and split the cost between us. It was so good! After dinner we came back to the lofts and hung around until our second meeting at 8 but this one was a little bit more fun. We played a game before we all went back to our rooms. Several people were having problems setting up their routers and so I went to go help them and met up with Stuart and Ryan on the trip and the three of us went around at the geek squad for the night. After that I went to my room to sleep but ended up talking to my roommates for another couple hours which was awesome! Continue reading