Thursday, November 29, 2012


I always thought that I was a hands-on type of person who prefers using senses than intuition. However, after I came to Calvin, I realized that I enjoy intense brain exercises as well! And the most important thing is that we balance our spiritual, intellectual, and physical life. And I like to do that by applying concepts of one field to the other, especially extending the spiritual message into intellectual, physical, and social sector of my life.

Last week, I learned a mind blowing concept which helped me to have a better understanding of pursuing life with God. Self- Control. Not just an ordinary self-control that restrains me from having another cookie or cutting sleep, but the self-control of Jesus. ACTIVE SELF-CONTROL.

“Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” <Hebrews 12:18>

It is a self-control to mature for the goal waiting. It is a self-control to give my life more to God. It is a self-control to actually propel forward and deeply into this world.

I always had a question on how can I break the gates of Satan. Because Jesus has defeated Satan already but my life still seems to be stuck in a status quo. I don’t know how and where to start from. There could be many reasons but I believe that at least some parts are due to the passive form of self-control. The ordinary passive self-control is rooted in the pessimistic conscience of I can’t or I shouldn’t which is slid into the downward spiral of restrains. Also it was just sad to leave what I liked, and those always seem better once I commit to control it. Or not long after, I forgot what I was doing this for. Instead of our calling to burst outward and continue with the momentum, this passive self-control restrains and captures us into sometimes self-set restrictions which could be away from God’s will.

Think about it, it sounds very different and feels very different. Which is more motivating, “I have to cut my sleep, I only will sleep 4 hours a day” or “because I want to know more about you God and I want to live a deeper and richer life with you, I will rise in the early morning”? Sometimes, these small changes in intention change the whole outcome. I like it positive.   

Hopefully you would find a way to change your life’s dynamic into active and positive form rather than restrained and negative.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012


Investment  in  





is essential.

We raise up this blessing:

Dear Lord,

We thank you for Jesus's work upon the cross. 

We thank you for your Holy Spirit.

We pray that we invest ALL in you.

We raise up our families, education, relationships, and the Grand Rapids community to You.

We will continually lift these up to You.

We pray that we will not cast our treasures upon the earth but above.

We thank you for the callings you have placed on our lives.

We pray that we invest into all that you have for us in these callings, and that your children may be reached and cared for.

We pray for open ears to hear Your Voice at ALL times,
 not just to strain our ears in trying times.

We pray for Your Kingdom to come quickly.

We pray for Shalom.

In Jesus's Holy name, 


Nikita Miner
Academically Based Service-Learning
Literature,  Language, and the  Arts

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Where I Need to Be

Oh. My. PIZZA. This semester has just been choc-full of new and exciting experiences for me. From working two jobs to commuting 30 minutes one way to Calvin (and one of my jobs), I have found that I lose 49 hours of free/study time every two weeks than the average student living on-campus without a job. And that doesn't include volunteering at Butterworth's ER Department, getting ready for the MCAT, and maintaining a fraction of a social life. Throughout the chaos of each week, I've found that God is teaching me numerous things about myself:

1. I am not Superman! Although I wish that I could partake in joining every club and event I believe in, that is simply not feasible. I don't have to, and am simply incapable of doing everything. God doesn't expect me to do everything, and neither should I.

2. I LOVE PEOPLE! Because I have been so seriously indulged in my busy schedule, my personal interaction time has been minimal. Thus, I have come to absolutely adore the times that I am with people! I know that I can sometimes be a chatterbox and can be a bore, but I just love to have people around me. I am actually an extreme introvert; this can most readily be displayed when I am walking around campus (or even in the S-LC) and run into someone I know. I unintentionally show little recognition of the presence of others, but especially fail to share my joy at seeing a familiar face. And yet, when I do spend time with people, I essentially feel that I am practicing the most wonderful, although un-discussed, community with them. When we are simply in the same room, I feel that there is an implied idea that we are all busy and have things to do, but we will overcome them by one another's sides. 

3. I LOVE SERVICE! I have found from my work at the S-LC that I am very interested in service. I find myself wishing that I had more time to get involved in working with and for the community. There are so many different ways to get involved, and there are opportunities for every single type of major and personal interest! During StreetFest, I realized just how many amazing organizations are available in Grand Rapids and how fantastic the people are that work there. The same applies to each of our partner organizations that I am working with for Spring Break. Each of these people, both in Michigan and across the US, have given their very LIVES to what I would definitely dub "Changing the World." I find them inspirational and I want nothing more than to live the exact life of each of them. At this point, unfortunately, I am again reminded that I am not Superman.

4. I find intentional community extremely fascinating. Up to last year when I began a mentoring relationship (as the mentee), my life had been very free-flowing. However, as I began this great new job at the S-LC and further developed my relationship with my mentor, I have been very conscientious of the way that I have interacted with those around me. I found that I connect better with people, and I know that I seem to learn and gain more from people when doing this. (I'd like to hope that they feel the same way, too.) Because of this interest, I have thought about the idea of being in Project Neighborhood literally every day since school has started and will definitely apply to be in it next year. I believe that God intended for humans to live in strong fellowship with one another, and this is a great way of achieving that.

5. Last, and most importantly, I have realized God has placed me exactly where I need to be. When I entered Calvin College, I knew that I wanted to leave as a completely different person; I wanted my entire life to be switched around by the experiences and opportunities that God would present to me. Through the diverse assortment of experiences that I have this semester, I can see that God certainly is working in and around me, and I would be foolish to deny it. I can't wait to see what the rest of this semester and year hold for me!