“If men were duly to consider themselves, and turn their thoughts and reflections to the operations of their own minds, they would readily discover that it is faith, and faith only, which is the moving cause of all action in them; that without it, both mind and body would be in a state of inactivity, and all their exertions would cease, both physical and mental.”—Joseph Smith Jr., Lectures on Faith.
i don’t understand the male population. this is just a general statement, so i’m not pointing any fingers here, before anyone gets the wrong idea. but seriously, if you’re going to run everything you say and she says by your friends to get everyone’s opinion on how to respond to that and how to actually carry yourself in the relationship…even if it’s not a real “relationship,” what is that to a girl? nothing. i don’t know about other girls, but for me, i want to know you. and when you constantly tell everyone every detail of the situation, it feels to me that you’re not being yourself when i’m talking to you. that’s why i’m done with those “text-and-go” type relationships. i can’t deal with that anymore. i need face to face conversations, real conversations, phone conversations, about everything. i want a guy to be not only someone i care deeply about, but someone i can be myself with, someone i can know everything about, the good and the bad, and still want. i can’t be scared to talk to guys anymore. i’m completely myself with the guys i have zero interest in. i need to be that way with the ones that come along and steal my heart.
30 days, 30 letters. day eleven; to a deceased person.
i’ve already written you a countless number of letters and facebook messages, but here’s a total recap:
last year, i received a phone call on a friday in november. i didn’t know the number so i didn’t bother picking up. when you called back i figured it was important and i might as well answer. i heard a cheerful voice on the other end say “is this erica spitzleyyy?” i replied: “yes it sure is.” then you asked: “hey pretty lady, you might think this is weird but do you wanna hang out?” i hadn’t talked to you in about a year prior to that phone call, other than the occasional “hey” in the hallway. the tuesday following that call, i was sitting in tim horton’s attempting to study for chem, when my friend got a text from her dad saying there were police at your house. later that night, i was walking around my house when i got the text “robert russell shot himself.” my life did a complete 180, pretty much. the rest of the week was more stressful and more hurtful than i had ever imagined a week could be. that week was the hardest week by far that i have ever undergone, and i was totally crushed but the experience truly made me stronger. a year later, i sit here, still wondering why, knowing you were the brightest, happiest kid i knew. though we’ll never know your true reason, i think you’ve made us all learn an incredibly valuable lesson…to treat everyone with a decent amount of respect, and honestly care about everyone in the best way possible. i miss you tremendously robert, and so does the rest of lake orion. we love you so much, and wish you could have known that. the world lost an amazing person. i hope you know that i’m never going to forget you…just because i didn’t cry on the anniversary of your death doesn’t mean you weren’t present in my heart the whole time. it doesn’t seem like a year. time sure flies by. i can’t wait to meet you up there when God calls me to. we’ll have a ball :) i know you’re still watching us from up there. i hope you never stop guiding us.
So, what do you think? With God on our side like this, how can we lose? If God didn’t hesitate to put everything on the line for us, embracing our condition and exposing himself to the worst by sending his own Son, is there anything else he wouldn’t gladly and freely do for us? And who would dare tangle with God by messing with one of God’s chosen? Who would dare even to point a finger? The One who died for us—who was raised to life for us!—is in the presence of God at this very moment sticking up for us. Do you think anyone is going to be able to drive a wedge between us and Christ’s love for us? There is no way! Not trouble, not hard times, not hatred, not hunger, not homelessness, not bullying threats, not backstabbing, not even the worst sins listed in Scripture:
They kill us in cold blood because they hate you.
We’re sitting ducks; they pick us off one by one.
None of this fazes us because Jesus loves us. I’m absolutely convinced that nothing—nothing living or dead, angelic or demonic, today or tomorrow, high or low, thinkable or unthinkable—absolutely nothing can get between us and God’s love because of the way that Jesus our Master has embraced us.
“You’re the God of this city, You’re the king of these people, You’re the Lord of this nation, You are. You’re the Light in this darkness, You’re the Hope to the hopeless, You’re the Peace to the restless, You are. There is no one like our God. For greater things are still to come, greater things are still to be done in this city. Greater things are yet to come, greater things are still to be done here.”—God of This City <3
30 days, 30 letters. day ten; to someone you don't talk to as much as you'd like.
preface: this took a little thinking. there’s a few people that i occasionally smile at in the hallways or hug when appropriate, but do i really talk to them much? i’ve come to the realization that i have many friends that i don’t truly know inside and out…and that upsets me. but, i have chosen one to write this about…a guy that i will hug at edge, but barely talk to. i guess he gets upset when i do that, too. but my answer has always been: “i’m sorry, i have to see everybody in such a small amount of time.” maybe instead of acquiring tons of friends without really understanding them, i should get to know the ones i already have. but don’t get me wrong, i’ll still be making friends…that’s kinda my favorite thing to do :)
i really would like to know you better. and i know we always make plans that don’t happen, but i care about you too much to be that superficial friend. my parents love you, and so do i, because you’re an incredible person. we’ve been growing apart because i don’t take the time to talk to you, and i’m sorry. i hope that we can repair things to the way they used to be, when we’d actually have meaningful conversations, and i hope that we do so before you graduate.
“you won’t find faith or hope down a telescope, you won’t find heart and soul in the stars. you can break everything down to chemicals, but you can’t explain a love like ours.”—-science & faith by the script.
30 days, 30 letters. day eight; to your favorite internet friend.
whaaaaaaat? internet friend? well, i guess i have like two people that i occasionally talk to, whom i’ve never actually met in person…
how about i just write to my followers?
hey there! all 33? of you…haha. thanks for putting up with my posts. i know sometimes they might get annoying, i mean, who really wants to hear about boy & friend drama, right? anyway, i appreciate that you guys take the time to at least read some of this. it makes me feel like my thoughts are being heard by somebody :)
the drama performances at the seven project were unbelievable & indescribable. they put me in tears. God sure is fighting for us.
all i wanna do is cry. maybe it’s just an emotional night, but my head is spinning. i don’t know how or why or what i’m going through because i’m not supposed to feel sick every time i see someone. so what, maybe i still care about you. but i just pray that these feelings flee from me.
30 days, 30 letters. day seven; to your ex boyfriend.
i don’t have that much to say…i mean i miss you, but breaking up with you was the right thing to do. i wish you would have just lived here, because i really really liked you. but life goes on, and my life is pretty wonderful right now. i hope you’re having a nice time. i’m happy for you with this new girlfriend you claim “won’t ever break your heart like i did,” but when the time comes, i’m sure someone will get hurt. it happens. it’s a part of life. i’ve been hurt before, and i guess i’ve hurt people before. that’s the problem with unbalanced relationships. anyway, thank you for the time we shared together in middle school and this summer.
still <3 you even though you’re far away in more ways than one.
"Would you consider yourself a follower of Christ? Tell us about your relationship with God."
says orlando application.
response: I grew up in a family accustomed to the experience of God only on Christmas Eve and Easter. I never fully understood Him, or considered myself particularly “religious,” because I wasn’t exposed to that lifestyle. I was the stereotypical “good kid,” and that was enough to me. I knew there was a higher power, but wasn’t too concerned and figured “well, I’m a good person…as long as I don’t kill somebody or rob a bank I’m pretty sure I have a ticket to heaven.” In August of 2009, everything I knew and thought was reasonably stable started to come crashing down. A sequence of events led to the proposed divorce of my previously “happily married” parents. My mother resorted to bettering herself, and dragged us to Kensington one Sunday morning after she’d been served the divorce papers. I remember that day clearly, from my fit about going because it was much too early on a weekend morning, to bawling my eyes out when a little girl came on stage with a single lit candle singing “this little light of mine,” to later receiving the invite to attend the Edge student ministry kickoff that night. I went. That moment, that day, changed the course of my life. I fell in love with the atmosphere and became completely amazed by God’s presence, His grace and love reaching high school students of a generation that needs Him the most.
I became heavily dedicated to Jesus.
I was baptized on January 31st, 2010.
I had the privilege of venturing to Orlando with Kensington last spring break, and it was the most treasured experience of my life.
I lead a small group of middle schoolers every Sunday morning with Breakaway.
I will be co-leading a small group of 8th grade girls that I was blessed to meet at a Breakaway Springhill retreat I co-led at.
preface: this letter is dedicated to Robert Russell, a friend who committed suicide on November 18th, 2010.
did you know 19.3 percent of high school students have seriously considered killing themselves? suicide is the 3rd leading cause of death for the age group 15-24, most caused by severe depression (http://www.teensuicidestatistics.com). it is estimated that one in every 50 people attempt to hurt themselves by cutting or an eating disorder each year. and a leading number of statistics show that alcohol and drug dependence in this generation is on the rise. if you’re out there right now, reading this, and you’ve thought about suicide, hurting yourself, or drug/alcohol reliance, i have something revolutionary to tell you.
did you know our God has incredible plans for you? He made you in His perfect image, for a specific purpose. God created YOU for something far, far more than an addiction or depression and acts of violence upon yourself. He loves you dearly, for you are His child, and there is no love truer than that of the Lord. whether you believe it or not, you are truly darling. you’re a one-of-a-kind treasure. you are precious in the eyes of the ones who love you, as well as your Creator. you contribute much more than you are aware of to the world around you. the Lord celebrates you. He rejoices when things are right and just with you, and He is saddened by this destructive behavior. you are completely and utterly loved. you are deeply cared for. you are a wonderful work of art.
so, stranger, i hope and pray that you stop hurting yourself. there are countless people who love you and would be deeply crushed if they lost you to depression or addiction.
these are the things i wish i could have told him.
30 days, 30 letters. day five; to your future husband.
dearly beloved future husband with the nice hair and beautiful eyes and gorgeous smile, priceless laugh, amazing personality, fantastic sense of humor, and insanely wonderful family,
i am not too concerned about when or where i will meet you quite yet. but i know that when i do, i will love you with all i have, every day, for the rest of my life. please promise me the same. you are my dream, to celebrate oneness and create a family with, to stand by me and protect each waking moment from the evils of this world. no, you do not need to possess every characteristic listed above (although it’d be nice, hahaha), but you need to hold my heart as if it is the most precious item in the universe. in times of trouble with our relationship, stand strong and don’t let go. in times of joy, praise our Creator. i forgot to mention…you must be a God-honoring man. we will embark on a journey together, from day one of our relationship, to seek and understand the Lord. our ultimate goal will be to worship Him completely, with absolutely everything we have invested in Him, and pass this love and compassion for God unto our children. i know these things are much too far away, but i am committing to purity for you…that is the ultimate gift. please honor me in doing this as well.
30 days, 30 letters. day four; to your closest relative.
gosh, i love you. i haven’t seen you in over six months…which is a bad situation. i cherish you a lot because you’re the best friend that will never leave (cause you’re kinda stuck with me as your cousin, haha) and i can basically tell you anything & everything. we have some of the best times, and i’m so so glad we reconnected after about 8 years of separation. it’s like we’ve never been apart. i’m blessed to have you in my life.
i hate that you fight all the time. i hate that i get caught in the middle of these fights. i hate that you leave me home alone afterward so you can “cool off.” i wish you had another child, so i could have someone stable in my life. i owe you a lot for taking care of me, there’s no doubt about that. but with everything going on, i’m starting to lose you guys. thank you for everything that you’ve given me, because i know you’ve poured your heart into everything i am.
mom; you’re so strong, and i love that about you. i admire you for everything that you’ve been through. when we fight, i feel awful afterward. that’s why i’m crying. not because i didn’t “get what i wanted,” because i had to have an awful argument with you. i’m sorry for anything i ever did to make you upset, i love you so much.
dad; you’re the smartest man in the world, and i can talk to you about almost everything. i always say i have a stronger relationship with you than with mom, but lately i’ve been noticing that your attention is only drawn by your phone. work seems overpowering in your life, and it doesn’t feel like you have time left at the end of the day for family. but i still love you, and look up to you so much. thank you for being there.
so all i’ve been saying are negative things, but there’s a whole lot of positive. you both are the first people i wake up to in the morning, and i am blessed to have such caring parents waiting for me. you’ve taught me pretty much everything i know, and you’ve been there 100% in times of need. i always say i want to get out of the house, but i know that when the time comes, i’ll miss you guys. thank you. just, thank you.
30 days, 30 letters. day two; to your first crush.
we were inseparable in 2nd through 4th grade—our moms were the best of friends, and we did almost everything together. i still have some of the sweetest memories of you, when we would go to the roller skating rink and hold hands during “couples skate,” when we’d go to that place (i forget the name of it, but it was similar to Dave & Busters) and have a total ball, and the time you sang “shape of my heart” to me on the playground. our days were mostly spent with each other, and we developed a kind of puppy love you see in those hallmark card pictures. things were so simple then. it’s cute and it makes me laugh that you were my first “boyfriend”…in second grade. i’d like to think that if we knew each other today, we’d have a cory/topanga type thing going on. i’m proud that you were homecoming king last year :) hope all is well, and take care.
30 days, 30 letters. day one; to your best friend.
preface: words cannot even begin to describe how incredibly grateful i am to have the people i have in my life. there are a number of friends that i hold close to my heart, some even closer. my best friends consist of the ones who truly know me inside and out, my core go-to group of girls. but one of those girls has been here from the start…and her name happens to be kelsey burnell, the epitome of a best friend.
i never get the chance to tell you how much i appreciate our friendship. we’ve been through so much together since we were kids—kindergarten, torturing poor lauren and mini kitty, the big move to colorado, transition back to michigan, crazy card parties, the D word (almost divorce), family gatherings, blizzards, the list could go on and on…and on. we’ve obviously grown apart a bit because, well, we aren’t neighbors anymore…however unfortunate that is. but i know that if i needed you, you’d be there by my side. and that’s why i’m honored to call you my best friend, because we’ll find a way to stick with each other forever. my best childhood memories have been spent with you, and every time we get a chance to reconnect, even more great times are had. i love you, not only because you’re my absolute best friend, but because you’re the sister i never had.
“can you feel it calling, can you feel it in your soul, can you trust this longing and take control? fly, open up the part of you that wants to hide away. you can shine, forget about the reasons why you can’t in life, and start to try, ‘cause it’s your time. time to fly.”—HILARY DUFF YOU ARE BRILLIANT. no wonder i used to pretend like i was you.
i’m exhausted. and soooooooo sore from dance tryouts. it’s crazy. but since i bombed the singing & dancing auditions, i’m nervous for tomorrow’s posting of the cast list. seussical doesn’t seem like my time to shine, to be honest. oh well.
i really like not having a facebook. but i’m so clueless to half of the things i’d usually be aware of…which is weird.
i have nothing more to say…i’m excited for this weekend :)
“when the visions around you bring tears to your eyes, and all that surrounds you are secrets and lies, i’ll be your strength, i’ll give you hope, keeping your faith when it’s gone. i’ve loved you forever in lifetimes before, and i promise you never will you hurt anymore. i give you my word, i give you my heart, this is a battle we’ve won. and with this vow, forever has now begun.”—boy bands like ‘n sync make everything better. this will be my wedding song. makes me cry, every time.
i’m pretty sure i just made up a word but anyhow, i have absolutely no time to say what i need to say. but the necessary thoughts are: edge was amazing tonight, i missed it dearly. i’ve been so happy with my life lately, but feel like something’s not right.
i met your girlfriend tonight, she’s nice…but i didn’t appreciate seeing you two together. things change, i get it. and it’s not that i’m still into you like that, it’s just weird for me…that’s all. i also think it’s quite funny how you claim you’ll still “never find somebody like me” when i’ve become nobody to you.
i don’t understand how i’m so talented at matching others together, but can’t find a suitable guy for myself. either my standards are too high, or i’m not looking in the right places…though i’m not really looking at all haha. God’s going to do what He pleases in that area of my life, i’ve submitted that to Him.
there must still be a few things i need to surrender to my Lord, because total fulfillment is far from my reach. i feel like bloggers are always depressed when they write, but i’m bubbly in real life, i promise. writing just helps get the deep stuff out.
so much more i could say. but there’s nothing else i can say right now. goodnight lovely tumblr kids.
2010 was a great year. many memories to last a lifetime. i wish the best to you for 2011, own it this year. be YOU. don’t take criticism into your heart, but push it back…do what you need to do. help people. make a dream come true…heck, make your own dream come true. do it all, it’s never too late. new year, here we come <3