Sunday, August 29, 2010

On Mission: CWU

Pastor Mark talked about being on mission in our communities today. It got me thinking about all the opportunities there will be at Central this fall. I mean, I'll be at a school full of people who don't know Jesus and are at a crucial point in their lives. I'm praying that there will be at least one other Christian brought into my life early on so that we can reach out to the people on campus together. But if not, I'm praying that I will have the boldness to just be open with people and not be afraid about talking about Jesus. I would love to get a mini-community group started there. I mean, I can't lead it unless it's just girls, but how great would it be to get a group of people to watch the sermons and talk about them? Or even just to have an on-campus Bible Study? I mean the opportunities are endless, and Jesus is putting me there. So I'm excited to be on mission at Central!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Academy Memories (part 2)

I was thinking about Academy again today. The very last day of actual work we were all kind of squirrely. We didn't have classes, we did have a lot of fun things to do, and no one was really making us do pushups for anything. So we went out to the lawn to study for our big final exam. Our TACs told us they really wanted the academic ribbon every day, even if we didn't win anything else. So the pressure was on us to score well on our final tests. We ended up settling into two different groups to study. One spent their entire time playing around, and then there were 4 or 5 of us who actually sat down and studied. Inbetween quizzing each other, though, we got some good talking in and it made me even sadder to leave my boys.

I started packing up my room yesterday. Not the stuff that I AM taking with me, just the stuff I won't need. I figure if I pack it up now then in these 3 final weeks I can make adjustments as needed. It's crazy weird though to see my walls almost bare and these three big boxes in the middle of my room :(

Monday, August 23, 2010

Academy Memories (part 1)

I don't really want to write a new post because I want Academy to be at the top forever. But since that's not practical, I'm writing something new! Yay me!

I've been house sitting for the last week, so I've been living out of  a duffel bag for 2 weeks. And it's SO nice to be at my house again! The funny thing is that while I was house sitting, I'd get these random feelings like I should be doing pushups. So I did. See, at Academy we would wake up, get ready for the day and get our rooms clean for inspection and then we'd run out to formation. After morning formation we'd go to breakfast. During meals, we would wait in line with our heads down, studying the previous day's class notes. If we were caught looking around, the TAC officers would yell at us, but at the same time if we were so oblivious that we missed a TAC officer trying to get through a line and neglected to yell "make a hole!" then we'd also get in huge trouble. At any point during the meal, if any Explorer in the room screwed something up--whether it was addressing an officer incorrectly or bumping in to a TAC--everyone would be on their faces doing pushups. Usually it was in sets of 10 but some mistakes REALLY made TACs mad... like if someone addressed a female officer as "sir" (an easy mistake to make when you spend most of the day saying 'yes sir') or if all the Explorers neglected to serve a TAC in a timely manner.

During the day, if we were inbetween classes and one of our TACs walked by and saw us talking at all, we'd be on our faces doing pushups. One day, one of our TACs saw us studying (or pretending to study) during our break and told us we studied too much. So he had us doing PT over the break. That's just how Academy went. If one of our four TACs thought we should be doing some sort of physical work, we did it. I'd say we did less PT because of mistakes that people made and more just because the TACs were bored :)

Twice during the week we got our guide-on (our platoon's flag) stolen and once someone got our mascot. We had to do crazy/dumb things to get them back. One time we sang "I'm a little teapot" (which our TACs lovingly recorded and put on Facebook), once we did "Party in the USA" complete with dance moves and hand motions, and once we surrounded a deputy (who got our flag) and made a kid in our group who looked like Justin Bieber sing the chorus of a JB song to her.

Good times. I'm trying to get out of the "I wish I was back at Academy" mindset, but it's hard. When we were there, if we did a good job we were rewarded. Some of us earned the respect of our TACs, and all of us definitely respected/feared them. It was kind of that perfect world where good triumphs over evil and although people are occasionally mean just for the heck of it, it was rarely ever personal. Most of it was just to break us down and build us back up as stronger people who worked together as a team. I decided life would be awesome if instead of parents, I could just have my TAC Officers fill the parental role :) (jk, I love my parents most of the time, too)

One more thing. I thought I'd explain the significance of the title of the post below this one. "If not now, then when? If not me, then who?" This was a quote that Officer H gave us on Friday of Academy. It kind of sums up the job of a police officer and it really stuck in my head. On Saturday we did mock scenes, the physical agility test, and shot at the range. Mock scenes are basically when we're given scenarios with actors who play out a scene that an officer might encounter and we have to react as an officer would (which is what the Apple Cup in May was, a bunch of scenes that we were graded on). The thing is, mock scenes kind of scare me because I'm afraid of doing something really wrong. So when we were at Apple Cup, I was really glad to have Tyler, my partner, take the lead officer role on almost all the scenes. At Academy, I had more experience than my partners so I agreed to take lead officer but it petrified me because if we screwed up it was my fault.

I remember SO clearly as we began our first scenario, a building search with a prospective burglary in progress, I stood outside of the door waiting to knock and announce and felt SO un-prepared. But that quote came to mind, if not now then when? If  I don't just do it now, when will I ever be ready to take on the challenge? If I'm not ready now, when will I ever be? I have the training, I just need to get in there and do it. If not me, then who? If I don't get in there and do this search, who will? I know I can do it because I am confident that this is a calling God has put on my life. And He will walk with me through everything I need to do. So if I don't do this job then who can I expect to do it? That quote will stick with me for the rest of my career, I'm sure.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

"If not now, then when? If not me, then who?"

Explorer Academy was last week. I can't explain exactly what I learned. It's like I'm a new person, and yet the same. When I put on my uniform now, I feel so much more respect for it and for the job that it signifies. I went to Academy to prove to myself that I have what it takes to make it through a week of hell. I came back wanting to do this job more than before.

My TACs (the officers who were in charge of our small groups) were unusually amazing. Deputy C, my main TAC, could be a real tough guy and pushed us physically and emotionally. I discovered I can go way farther than I ever thought I could. At the same time though, Deputy C really cared about each of us and wanted us to succeed. So did our other TACs. So my Basic Academy was different than most people's. Sure we worked hard, but we wanted to. We did our best to make our TACs proud, and they in turn didn't make us do pushups just for the heck of it.

Like I said before though I really can't put into words what I came away with. I value life more, I appreciate authority in a different way, I feel like many of my peers are just floating through life and wish they could experience Academy, too. And I respect the people who push themselves to achieve their personal best--no matter what the field.

Our platoon (16 of us) won the group academic award every day. We also did well at drill down (drill and ceremony competition) and Esprit de Corps (skits showing teamwork and spirit). At Academy graduation on Sunday, awards were handed out to individuals in Academics, Firearms, and Physical Agility as well as for the overall most well-rounded Explorer. I was shocked when I won 3rd place in Basic Academics, 3rd in Basic Female Physical Agility, and 1st in Basic Firearms. After graduation, when I said goodbye to all my TACs, my female TAC told me that in a few years she could see me doing her job. And that made the whole week worthwhile to me.

Monday, August 2, 2010


I haven't been that busy, and yet I find myself putting off the things I should be doing first. For instance, why is reading a spy novel and watching this week's episode of White Collar so much more important than sitting down and spending some time with Jesus? Answer= it's not. I think part of my problem is that when I'm watching a movie or reading a book, my brain gets to check out. When I'm hanging with friends, I'm just having fun. And spending time with Jesus is hard work because I'm always thinking. Still, I recognize that's not a good excuse, so I will push myself back into Exodus. (and don't tell me to read something else that I find more interesting, because Exodus has been one of the most interesting books I've read)

46 days till I leave for college. I am now Facebook friends with my roommate, and she seems normal enough :) No word on the job-front. I have an application to fill out for an on-campus job, but I don't want to be offered a job there before I get a chance to hear back from the other places I applied, so i'm going to wait a little while to turn it in.

I could keep blogging for hours about how much I miss Caroline and Jill, how sad I am that Jessie moved yesterday, and what the Explorer post is up to this week, but I think I'm going to actually sit down and read my Biblia.