Saturday, September 24, 2011

She shoots, she scores!

Tim's roommates raided his closet
Sometimes I think I'm taking on too much. In 99% of cases, just when I'm about to cancel on a plan and then decide not to and "just suck it up," I am always glad that I followed through. (And heck, I'm working on that whole "being reliable" and "responsible adult" thing and it's really working out for me!) To give you a little context to why I bring this up: on Monday night of this week after seeing Fr. Larry Richards, an awesome priest and speaker who was in Fargo for the week giving a series of missions talks in the diocese (to which nearly 700 people attended, by the way!), I stubbed and quite probably broke my big left toe, which still has a bit of healing to go. A couple of days later I came down with a nice cold which brought a decrease in my mood and energy along with it. The coupling of those events did not stop my three Bible studies from going off without a hitch, nor keep me from going on the hayride on Friday night with some students and having a great time. A few weeks back Miriam (friend in Fargo and Lucas' sister-in-law) asked me to join them in the 3-on-3 tournament up in Grand Forks at UND coming up.
Neapolitan cookies I made for my girls!
I didn't know at the time that the tournament would conveniently fall on the weekend after I suffered the pains from a self-induced toe injury and a head cold, but lo and behold, I stayed consistent, didn't cancel, and our team ended up taking home the 'ship! JR would have been proud to see his girlie still be able to dribble, crash the boards, and throw up a nothin-but-net shot from down low (just like that Waunakee game senior year, remember dad?). Needless to say, being a responsible adult pays off and I'm so glad I didn't whimp out because of a little injury. I also did get to meet some of the students at UND and see the missionaries, so that is always an added bonus, along with a $10 Scheels gift card.

In other news, every once in a while the FOCUS headquarters ask us to submit a campus story about something with a student, event, extraordinary Bible study or the like. I volunteered to write this one and just thought I'd share it with all of you:
September 21, 2011 – Story for corporate from NDSU
     When I applied to be a missionary at the beginning of this year I could not wait to hit the college campus, inspire young women the way I had been impacted by FOCUS missionaries and most of all, have the time and energy to continually reach out to the students and do fun spur-of-the-moment activities with them. Since I arrived in Fargo my entire scheme has been flip-flopped and rather than being the only one reaching out to the students, they have greatly surprised a lot of us and actually want to make plans and reach out to me. You might be thinking, “Wow, not rocket science Kelsey, of course the students want to get to know you and hang out with someone who is as excited about everything as you are.” Okay, so that was my first “A-ha!” moment.
    I also figured, “Okay, so if they actually do want to hang out with me, it will probably be all the hard-core Catholics who hang around Newman all the time and see me everyday regardless. Well if it weren’t for yet another surprise being thrown my way, and her name is Lindsey. Joe, one of the male student leaders, passed me the name of a grad student he worked with all summer who, “isn’t Catholic but she needs something like this. And she ran track in college so she’ll fit right in with your athlete study.” He also threw a caveat my way: Lindsey does not really care for the Catholic faith nor want a whole lot to do with it. Great, I instantly thought, she already doesn’t like me.
Jamie (freshman in my study) and I having fun after the hayride
      I called her, a little shy at first, and received her voicemail. Three times. I left her messages, telling her the date, time and place for the first Bible study meeting and how “great it will be to see you there and meet you!” She returned my call the same day as the first meeting and thanked me for being so persistent with her and that she would meet us at the Union at 8:15 pm. She showed up on a long board, told us she’s from Northern Cali and I instantly knew we would be just fine. I opened the 13 of us in prayer and before I could do so much as blink after that second sign of the cross she blurted out, “Oh, well I’m not Catholic! But I’m Christian and I mean, that’s okay, right?” I assured her it was not a problem at all, trust me. She pulled me aside after that first meeting, asked me if I would mind having her come even though she isn’t Catholic, and I responded with a confident, “Of course. Let’s get coffee and just get to know each other so we can find out where we’re coming from.”
     That following Friday we got coffee and I think I can pinpoint it as one of the highlights of my semester thus far. Not only is she a strong Christian woman with outstanding morals, but she actually likes to ask me questions and has been trying to get to know me just as much as I have been her. And she thinks I’m interesting—you certainly cannot go wrong there! That first coffee date we planned to go hiking in Minnesota that coming Sunday and since then she has been the one asking me to randomly hang out, go for a bike ride to get some ice cream, come over to meet her grandfather who’s in town, go for sunrise runs, etc.
    The coolest part about my budding friendship with Lindsey is that we can be 100% ourselves with one another, ask each other questions about our pasts, thoughts, desires, ideals and most importantly, our faiths. Not only has she been continuously coming to study each week, but also she recently sent me a couple of sermons about communion and would like to get together to talk about it and see what I think about communion (a.k.a. the Eucharist), since she understands how different our opinions and beliefs are. I cannot wait! No matter how the Holy Spirit works in both of our lives it truly is an amazing experience to be able to just live my life, spend time with her doing ordinary activities and growing together as sisters in Christ. God is good, all the time.

Until next time, please keep myself, the other missionaries and all of the students at NDSU in your prayers, God bless you!
Yours truly,
Kelsey Marie 


  1. Another awesome proud :)

  2. Beautiful, Kels! Thanks for so openly sharing your life with all of us, it's so fun to hear about :)

    Love and miss you.