Spring is a time for revival. A time to plant the seeds of new life and watch it grow. If you’ve ever had a garden, taken a biology class, or paid attention to the world around you, there’s a good chance that you’ve seen how different plants and ...

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Planting Seeds

Spring is a time for revival. A time to plant the seeds of new life and watch it grow. If you’ve ever had a garden, taken a biology class, or paid attention to the world around you, there’s a good chance that you’ve seen how different plants and animals are able to thrive in different types of environments, yet are unable to grow in others. In fact, certain types of environments can even be damaging to the life that is planted there. The same thing can happen with seeds of faith.

In Matthew 13: 1 – 23 Jesus tells a parable of a sower who plants seeds of in a variety of different environments. Some of the seeds were thrown in soil that was too shallow so that the seeds were far too visible for prey or grew too quickly and were burned by the sun. Others were choked out by the weeds that had taken root before them. Only the seeds that were planted in good soil, the seeds that were looked after and well cared for, were able to thrive and bring new life to the land they were planted in.

So how can we find “good soil” to plant our seeds of faith?

The “good soil” Jesus is referring to in these passages is the foundation of our belief in Christ. I wish I could tell you exactly how to find good soil, but sometimes places of good soil might look different for different people. The most important thing is that you continue to seek Christ throughout your journey of growth and encourage others to do the same in their own journeys because faith can’t flourish without a good foundation. A good place to start is going to church and getting involved in church activities. This could be going to BASIC, joining a Life Group, or working on service activities. Once you feel comfortable enough, you can help others plant their own seeds. This might also consist of participating in service activities or going on mission trips to help reach others who are trying to find Christ and plant their own seeds of faith. What better way to work on spiritual growth than in a season associated with growth?

A lot of you are making your way through your first week of classes for the Spring semester. Maybe you’re excited about coming back and seeing all of your friends, maybe you’re wishing you stayed home, or maybe you’re like me and are excited to be back at BASIC, but are a little nervous about how the semester is going to unfold. No matter what you’re feeling right now, there is always an opportunity to work on planting seeds of faith because faith can always grow year-round.

Emily Koenig
UNI Junior
Superhero geek, Star Wars enthusiast, Bee sting survivor

 

Matthew 13 1 23

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What's Happening?

  • Parables// 8:00pm Lang Hall //  Come join us this Thursday as we kick off our new series on parables! This week Carter Moore will lead us in a discussion about the Parable of the Sower. Bring a friend!
  • Free Brunch!// Sunday January 20th // Join us for brunch after the 9:30am service at Orchard Hill’s Waverly campus for a free college-aged brunch! Come for service and stay for food! Don’t forget to invite your friends! #FreeFood
  • College-Aged Lunch// Join us Sunday, January 27th after the 10:45 service at Orchard Hill Church in Cedar Falls for a free college-aged lunch with all of your tailgate favorites! Bring a friend and bring your appetite! #BLESS #Eat
  • Never Thirst // Join the movement to raise $10,000 for a fresh water well in partnership with UCI in Bohoc, Haiti. Click the graphic below to find out how you can donate. #NeverThirst
  • Production Team // Do you have a passion for working with video/audio/lighting equipment? Are you interested in learning more about production or being part of a production team? Well, you’re in luck! The BASIC Production Team is looking for more people to join! Click the graphic below or email Ben Franke at benjaminfranke762@gmail.com to learn more and sign up! #BASICTeams #BASICFam
  • Super Bowl Party // Join us at Orchard Hill Church on Sunday February 3rd for our very own Super Bowl party! There will be food, games, prizes and more! Doors open at 4:30pm, and kick off is at 5:30pm. We hope to see you there! #SuperBowl #AllAreWelcome
  • IF Gathering //  What if women of all ages gathered together to share their stories and talk about Jesus? Come join us February 8th - 9th at Nazareth Lutheran Church for a weekend of listening to speakers, eating, sharing, and being honest. For more information, click the graphic below, or check out the IF Gathering’s facebook page for the Cedar Valley!
  • Life Groups // Looking to get more involved in BASIC? Joining a Life Group is a wonderful way to meet new people and share God’s love! Click the graphic below to sign up for a Life Group in Cedar Falls or Waverly (both on and off campus)! #LifeGroupLove
  • Sunday Morning Worship // Join us on Sundays for church at Orchard Hill, Nazareth Lutheran Church, or Orchard Hill’s campus in Waverly! See the graphic below for service times and worship locations! #SundayWorship

Click any of the graphics below for more information!

Parables Slides The Sower

 Free College Age Brunch jan 20

Free College Age Lunch slide Tailgate favorites

Never Thirst Giving Campaign slide web 

Production Team 2018

SuperBowl Slide

IF Cedar Valley slide 

Life Group

Church Services.ohc.naz.waverly

      
 


A Time for Reflection

With Thanksgiving break having wrapped up, I think now, as we should with all endings, it’s probably time to reflect a bit.

Out of curiosity, how many times did you give life updates to family and friends? Or if you live in a small town like me, how many times did you give life updates to family, friends, the grocery store clerk, the guys working the register at the gas station, and at least one or two random people who called to tell me they “saw my car parked down on Main street.”

I’ve talked to so many people, that after a while I find myself scrambling to get to a quiet place, a corner, a coffee shop, or even just sitting in my car outside. I just get exhausted so easily. These conversations we have over the holidays can seem so artificial, and it’s just so glaringly obvious when I skip over reality in order to find an answer that gets me out of the “spotlight of polite interest” a little quicker.  

But I’d like to remind you all that there is room for authentic answers to the question “how have you been?” because Jesus has never once let on that listening to someone’s heart “takes too much of His time.”

Know that no matter how far the drive home is, you will never go so far that you find the exit sign to His kingdom, and as for me, no matter how often I find myself sitting in the corner, it’s okay--- because I am always sitting at His feet.

These things are so, so important. Believe me, that the power of prayer is so much more than both the feeling of inadequacy and the idea of distance.

And as we fall more in love with Jesus each day, have you ever noticed that the most broken things we have to say about ourselves usually have the BEST answers?

“I don’t know what I’m doing”

He does. Lean into it.

“I’m broken.”

He’s both the father with the bandaid and the only doctor in the world that knows what’s wrong with you before you even make an appointment.

“Why are things like this?”

He surpasses all understanding, now know that where our understanding ends is where faith begins.

“Where do I go from here?”

Your compass has pages and the needle is always telling you to forget true north and just look up.

We have a lot of doubts about ourselves, and some days, our pain seems invalid, and our worries not really worth hearing. But it just isn’t true. Standing in my designated back corner of Lang Hall, I can truly say I have never loved this many people so inconceivably much all at one time.

You’re so loved, BASIC community. And valid. And covered in prayer.

The song “New Wine” by Hillsong is one of my current favorites when dealing with those times of uncertainty or even pain. I think it just illustrates so well the handle that God really does have on our lives and the way that He guides through it. So take a second to listen and reflect, all the while knowing that there is a holy, holy dance being performed here, between the way that we hurt and the way that He loves us.

Breanna Knight
UNI Sophomore
Prayer Team Co-leader, Journal Enthusiast, Has an "uncomfortable fascination" with opossums

 

 

Breeana Knight 

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What's Happening?

  • Faith + Doubt  // 8:00pm Lang Hall //  Come join us as we explore His-STORY. This week Jeff Mickey continues the series on Faith + Doubt with the story of Jesus. Bring a friend! #AllAreWelcome
  • Chick-Fil-A Par-Tay // This Thursday night after BASIC, the Chick-Fil-A Part-Tay is back! Free Chick-Fil-A sandwhiches at Bani's starting at 9:15pm! Come to Lang Hall at 8:00pm to feed your soul, then head to Bani's to feed your stomach! See the graphic below for more information! 
  • Days for Girls // Days for Girls is a movement that increases access to menstrual care and education by developing global partnerships, cultivating social enterprises, mobilizing volunteers, and innovating sustainable solutions that shatter stigmas and limitations for women and girls. Currently, the movement movement has reached more than one million girls and counting. Click the graphic below for more info! #DaysforGirls
  • Christmas BASIC // On Sunday December 2nd, join us at Nazareth Lutheran Church for a special BASIC service! Join us at 6:00pm for a meal, jazz prelude at 6:45pm, then stay for a student led service at 7:00pm. The service is open to people of all ages, so bring your family and bring your friends! #ChristmasBASIC #SundayService #AllAreWelcome
  • Christmas in Walnut // Looking for a volunteer opportunity, or a way to spread God’s love this Christmas season? Look no further! On Saturday December 8th, Christmas in Walnut is offering plenty of opportunities for you to volunteer and spread a little Christmas cheer. Click the graphic below for more information!
  • Christmas Services // Both Orchard Hill Church and Nazareth Lutheran Church are offering Christmas services! Naz is offering services on December 23rd at 7:00pm and December 24th at 3:00pm, 5:00pm, 7:00pm, and 10:00 pm. Orchard Hill in Cedar Falls has on services on December 20th at 7:00pm, December 23rd at 10:00am, and December 24th at 1:00pm, 3:00pm, 5:00pm, and 7:00pm. Finally, Orchard Hill in Waverly has a service on December 23rd at 5:00pm. We hope to see you there! #AllAreWelcome
  • Life Groups // Looking to get more involved in BASIC? Joining a Life Group is a wonderful way to meet new people and share God’s love! Click the graphic below to sign up for a Life Group in Cedar Falls or Waverly (both on and off campus)! #LifeGroupLove
  • Sunday Morning Worship // Join us on Sundays for church at Orchard Hill, Nazareth Lutheran Church, or Orchard Hill’s campus in Waverly! See the graphic below for service times and worship locations! #SundayWorship

Click the graphics below for more information!

Faith Doubt Jeff

 

Chick Fil A Par Tay Slide nov 29 SLA

Days for Girls Kits

Christmas BASIC Event 2018

Christmas in Walnut

Christmas Eve Services 2018 Update

Life Group

Church Services.ohc.naz.waverly

      
 


Trusting Through the Storm

I struggle to trust humans

I put up walls and I push people away

I struggle to trust my God

When things get hard, I tend to run and hide instead of run to the One who is always there.

When I tried to figure out what to write about for this week’s blog, I thought it would be a good idea to see what Bible story we will be talking about Thursday in Lang Hall. Naturally, we will be talking about Peter. The man who struggled to trust His leader and friend. The man who literally was walking on water, but still doubted that His Jesus would fail him. The man who saw Jesus straight ahead, but then looked to the storm and when he did that, he started to fall. The man I identify with.

Peter is like so many of us. We doubt that God will follow through. We look at all the storms in our lives, stress, anxiety, depression, death, work, tests, future plans, broken/hard relationships, and start to believe that God will not keep us on top of the water. We feel the pain and start to not trust that God has us.

So what do we do? When we are doubting, struggling to stay afloat, not trusting God.

What do we do?

I wish I had one simple answer of how we can do this. A “this is how you completely trust God with everything manual”. But, it’s not that simple. Like many of you, I’m still learning this.  None of us are doing this perfectly. We struggle. We have to make the conscious decision every day to let go of the storms and look straight back to Jesus. We are learning every day what is means to trust in our God.

Siri, define trust: “to allow someone to have, use, or look after (someone or something of importance or value) with confidence”

Placing trust in God is allowing Him to have us, use us, and look after us with CONFIDENCE that He will take special care of us (something important and valuable). Trusting in Him is having confidence that He knows how to take special care of us. The definition of special is SO cool guys. It's “better, greater, or otherwise different from what is usual”. God is going to take care care of us in a better and greater way than we have ever experienced. God is going to take special care of you.

I wonder if Peter trusted that God was taking special care of Him.

So for now, we learn to trust in that. We take it day by day. Growing each day through the hard stuff. But knowing full well that we are in the hands of Someone Else. Someone who is going to take special care of us.

Proverbs 3: 5-6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; submit to Him, and He will make your paths straight”

Ally Henson
UNI Junior
High School Musical’s #1 Fan, Enneagram type 2, chicken nugget lover

Ally Henson

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What's Happening?

  • Faith + Doubt  // 8:00pm Lang Hall //  Come join us as we explore His-STORY. This week Jenny Nelson continues the series on Faith + Doubt with the story of Peter. Bring a friend! 
  • Days for Girls // Days for Girls is a movement that increases access to menstrual care and education by developing global partnerships, cultivating social enterprises, mobilizing volunteers, and innovating sustainable solutions that shatter stigmas and limitations for women and girls. Currently, the movement movement has reached more than one million girls and counting. Click the graphic below for more info! #DaysforGirls
  • Thanksgiving Services // Both Orchard Hill Church and Nazareth Lutheran Church are offering Thanksgiving services on Wednesday November 21st! The service at Naz starts at 6:00pm and Orchard’s starts at 7:00pm. We hope to see you there! #AllAreWelcome
  • Production Team // Do you have a passion for working with video/audio/lighting equipment? Are you interested in learning more about production or being part of a production team? Well, you’re in luck! The BASIC Production Team is looking for more people to join! Click the graphic below or email Ben Franke at benjaminfranke762@gmail.com to learn more and sign up! #BASICTeams #BASICFam
  • Urbana 2018 // December 27th - January 1st // St. Louis, Missouri // InterVarsity invites you to join over 13,000 students in worship. You'll get to hear amazing speakers, mingle with over 250 missions organizations (both international and global), and dive into the book of Revelation. Click the graphic below for more details! #Urbana2018
  • Spring Break Mission Trips // If you haven't already heard, BASIC is offering mission trips over spring break. It’s not too late to sign up the mission trips to Haiti and Jamaica! See the graphic below for who to contact about more information! #SpringBreakMissions
  • Life Groups // Looking to get more involved in BASIC? Joining a Life Group is a wonderful way to meet new people and share God’s love! Click the graphic below to sign up for a Life Group in Cedar Falls or Waverly (both on and off campus)! #LifeGroupLove
  • Sunday Morning Worship // Join us on Sundays for church at Orchard Hill, Nazareth Lutheran Church, or Orchard Hill’s campus in Waverly! See the graphic below for service times and worship locations! #SundayWorship

Click any of the graphics below for more information!

Faith Doubt Jenny

Days for Girls Kits

Orchard Thanksgiving Service 2018

Naz Thanksgiving Service 2018

Production Team 2018\

Updated Urbana 2018

College Spring Break 2019 slide

Life Group

Church Services.ohc.naz.waverly

      
 


Inadequate

Inadequate. The 10 letter word that seems to scream at me and fill my head. Anyone else?  

This was the word that I wrote down on my piece of paper Sanctuary night at BASIC. I pinned it to the somewhat empty board that would soon be filled with other brokenness -- eventually revealing a beautiful cross. In a way this was me admitting that inadequate was the word or feeling that kept me from truly trusting God.  

Ironically enough, as I was writing it, I could not for the life of me remember how to spell it. I beat myself up about that, thinking “of course, how fitting. The word that says I am not good enough or smart enough or capable enough -- I can’t even spell.” Embarrassed and rushed I squeezed a guess on the paper, pinned it, and walked away--hoping no one would see who wrote it.  

Fast forward one week--Brad Hillebrand was teaching at BASIC about Moses. I was sitting near the back, with my notebook ready to jot down more about the famous Sunday School hero I thought I was familiar with.  

Then Brad said, “Tonight I am speaking to a certain, specific group of people.  I’m talking to the ones who feel inadequate.” WHAT.  

Brad continued to teach and every word he said felt like he was talking right to me, like God was so clearly using Brad’s words to reach my ears.

Moses felt inadequate, too. Yet God used him. God used him to save thousands of people, and to lead them all on a terrifying journey when Moses felt like he was not capable enough to do so.  Maybe Moses wasn’t capable of that leadership. Maybe Moses wasn’t strong enough or brave enough or smart enough. But God was.

God knew those feelings that Moses felt, but He also knew that Moses was His creation--built to serve and live a life for Him. God knows your worries and doubts, too. But He created you -- built to serve and live a life for Him without the hindrance of your own self doubt.  

Sometimes I feel so small, so insignificant, so inadequate. (Just like I did at Sanctuary.) But that is when I need to step back and realize those lies are not from God.  God proved to me that very next week (during Brad’s teaching) that He sees me and He cares for me. And He wants to use me for a greater purpose, too-- just like He used Moses.  

What’s your one word that is keeping you from hearing God’s truth? Maybe that truth isn’t going to be heard through someone on stage, but maybe God will use a text, or a conversation, maybe God is speaking to you right now.

Our God is so creative -- I encourage you to take a step back and look for the ways that He is speaking directly to you.  

“For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:10

Abby Jolivette
UNI Senior
White mocha enthusiast, Lip sync champ, 8th grade C-team basketball player

 

 Abby J

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What's Happening?

  • Faith + Doubt  // 8:00pm Lang Hall //  Come join us as we explore His-STORY. This week Andrea Pingel continues the series on Faith + Doubt with the story of Esther. Bring a friend! #AllAreWelcome
  • Last Call for BASIC Swag // Looking for early Christmas present ideas for yourself or for a friend? New swag is avaliable, but TONIGHT IS THE LAST NIGHT TO ORDER, so make sure you order by midnight! Orders will be finished by Thanksgiving. Click the graphic below to browse our online shop! #BASICSWAG
  • College-Age Lunch // Join us Sunday, November 11th after the 10:45 service at Orchard Hill Church in Cedar Falls for a free Thanksgiving Feast! Bring a friend and bring your appetite! #BLESS #Eat
  • Days for Girls // Days for Girls is a movement that increases access to menstrual care and education by developing global partnerships, cultivating social enterprises, mobilizing volunteers, and innovating sustainable solutions that shatter stigmas and limitations for women and girls. So far, the movement has reached more than one million girls and counting. Click the graphic below for more info! #DaysforGirls
  • Events Team // Raise your hand if you liked Fall Bash! How would you like to be a part of the team that helps plan and excute events like Fall Bash? Click the graphic below to join the Events Team and help be a part of the decision making! #EventsTeamSwag
  • Urbana 2018 // December 27th - January 1st // St. Louis, Missouri // InterVarsity invites you to join over 13,000 students in worship. You'll get to hear amazing speakers, mingle with over 250 missions organizations (both international and global), and dive into the book of Revelation. The cost is only $515 before November 15th! Click the graphic below for more details! #Urbana2018
  • Life Groups // Looking to get more involved in BASIC? Joining a Life Group is a wonderful way to meet new people and share God’s love! Click the graphic below to sign up for a Life Group in Cedar Falls or Waverly (both on and off campus)! #LifeGroupLove
  • Sunday Morning Worship // Join us on Sundays for church at Orchard Hill, Nazareth Lutheran Church, or Orchard Hill’s campus in Waverly! See the graphic below for service times and worship locations! #SundayWorship

Click any of the graphics below for more information!

Faith Doubt Andrea

New BASIC Gear Available

Free College Age Lunch Thanksgiving Nov 11 2018

Events Team 2018

Days for Girls Kits

Updated Urbana 2018

Life Group

Church Services.ohc.naz.waverly

      
 


Into the Mountains

John 16:33 (NIV)

A week and a half ago, I boarded an airplane headed for Denver, Colorado. I was going to a women’s conference set deep in the mountains, by myself. Something in me stirred as the plane took off that Thursday morning. The addicting feeling of adventure was seeping into my being and was quickly taking ahold of me. I was excited, but in all honesty, I was more anxious than ever before.

I was slammed with tests, projects and papers all before I left (yay college, right?) and a small voice began to whisper in my ear, saying, “Is this conference really worth it? Wouldn’t it be more sensible for you to just stay home? It’s going to be a waste of time anyways.” Slowly, it became easier for me to listen to those thoughts than listen to the parts of my heart that said, “You are inherently brave. You are made for something like this. Get on that plane and go.”

Let me introduce you to one of my oldest and ugliest companions – Doubt.

The thing about Doubt is that he brings me away from Jesus. Doubt distracts me from the finished work of the cross. Doubt reminds me of my past and makes me question God’s goodness.

So, I finally made it to the ranch. In the mountains. In the middle of nowhere. And I didn’t know a soul. Oh, trust me, Anxiety and I were having some pretty intense conversations at that point too.

But what I felt even deeper and truer than the Anxiety and Doubt was the quiet strength of Jesus guiding me along. It was almost so imperceptible that I began to question God’s intentions in bringing me to the mountains if I couldn’t feel Him moving in big ways. But He was there. Soon, I began to feel Jesus lighting a fire in my heart in every moment that I searched for Him.

The funny thing about God is that He always knows what He’s doing. He took my heart that weekend from the dust and He made it into something beautiful. Not pretty, or girlish, or polite – no, He made it into something beautiful, fierce, and unwavering.

He laughed at Doubt, and Doubt left. He laughed at Anxiety, and Anxiety left. He laughed at Numbness, and Numbness left. And when those old companions of mine were gone, it was just me and my Creator. Oh, how freeing that was.

So, what’s my point in writing about this? My point is this: your doubt, anxiety, whatever it is, they don’t scare God one bit. All He wants is your heart and your YES. So, invite your old friends Doubt, Anxiety or Failure to come with you as you run to God. Because believe me, those old friends of yours won’t hang around long when you’re in the presence of Jesus.

Run into the mountains of your heart today, and I promise you, He will meet you there.

Mollie Sherman
UNI Junior
Pizza fanatic, Future Doctor, Book Nerd

 Mollie Sherman Mountains

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What's Happening?

  • Chick-Fil-A Par-Tay // This Thursday night at 9:15pm, head on over to Bani’s on College Hill after BASIC for free Chick-Fil-A! That’s right. Free Chick-Fil-A. #AllAreWelcome 
  • Faith + Doubt  // 8:00pm Lang Hall // Come join us as we explore His-STORY. This week Brad Hillebrand continues the series on Faith + Doubt with the story of Moses. Bring a friend! #AllAreWelcome
  • Fall Bash // October 25th // 8:00 - 10:00 pm // Lutheran Student Center// Get ready for a spooky good time! There will be games, food, a costume contest, ½ priced all drinks at a Sidecar Coffee truck, and more! And before you ask, yes, this event is B.Y.O.P. (See graphic for more details) #BASICFallBash #BYOP
  • College-Age Lunch // Join us Sunday, October 28th after the 10:45 service at Nazareth Lutheran Church for a free college-age lunch of Buffalo Wild Wings! Bring a friend and bring your appetite! #BLESS #Eat
  • New BASIC Swag // Looking for early Christmas present ideas fora friend or for yourself? New BASIC swag is now available! Order now until Halloween! Orders will be finished by Thanksgiving. Click the graphic below to browse our online shop! #BASICSWAG 
  • Production Team // Do have a passion for working with video/audio/lighting equipment? Are you interested in learning more about production or being part of a production team? Well, you’re in luck! The BASIC Production Team is looking for more people to join! Click the graphic below or email Ben Franke at benjaminfranke762@gmail.com to learn more and sign up! #BASICTeams #BASICFam
  • Urbana 2018 // December 27th - January 1st // St. Louis, Missouri // InterVarsity invites you to join over 13,000 students in worship. You'll get to hear amazing speakers, mingle with over 250 missions organizations (both international and global), and dive into the book of Revelation. Join us October 23rd for an informal informational meeting at Nazareth Lutheran church at 6:00pm! Dinner will be provided! Click the graphic below for more details! #Urbana2018
  • Life Groups // Looking to get more involved in BASIC? Joining a Life Group is a wonderful way to meet new people and share God’s love! Click the graphic below to sign up for a Life Group in Cedar Falls or Waverly (both on and off campus)! #LifeGroupLove
  • Sunday Morning Worship // Join us on Sundays for church at Orchard Hill, Nazareth Lutheran Church, or Orchard Hill’s campus in Waverly! See the graphic below for service times and worship locations! #SundayWorship

 

Click any of the graphics below for more information!

Chick Fil A Par Tay Slide

 Faith Doubt Brad

Fall Bash 2018 slide

Free College Age Lunch BWW Oct 28 naz

New BASIC Gear Available

Production Team 2018

Urbana 2018 Info meeting

Life Group

Church Services.ohc.naz.waverly

      
 


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