Off to Germany!

I’m Germany-bound! My senior year of high school, our family hosted Johanna as an exchange student, and I always hoped I’d get to visit my German sister someday. So finally, Mom, Dad, and I are headed to her hometown of Freiburg im Breisgau, Germany! We have some day trips planned to Colmar, France, Lucerne, Switzerland, Neuschwanstein Castle, and a few other places. At the end of our trip we’re taking the train to Paris and staying three days at their timeshare, and to cap things off, we have an 18-hour layover stay in Dublin. Yep, this is gonna be awesome. I haven’t gotten to explore Europe much, and I’m so thankful for the opportunity to do that with a family that I know and love!

ImageImageImage

So excited to see this sweet girl again!

Advertisements

moving – and longing for a heavenly home

our house in South BendIf you haven’t already heard, my parents are going to be moving to Plymouth, Indiana sometime this year. My dad accepted an associate pastor position at Crossroads Evangelical Free Church, and I really think this is a good fit and a good move for both us and our home church. At the same time, change is weird.

South Bend and CEFC are home to me – my parents moved here from our home in Bremerton, WA when I was four years old, so really, this is all I’ve ever known. But I’m extremely thankful for God’s goodness in allowing my parents to have an effective ministry here throughout my whole K-12 education. What a blessing to not have to move and make new friends during my awkward/formative years. I also keep reminding myself that Plymouth is only 40 minutes away from here, I’ll be at school anyways during the year, AND I have my own car.

So why does it still feel weird, and a bit unwelcome, this change intruding on my life? I would consider myself a pretty easygoing and adaptable person, but the one thing that’s stayed pretty much the same for me is this place I’ve come to call home. But nothing on this earth is permanent. This is not really my home. Bremerton wasn’t, South Bend isn’t, Grace College isn’t, Plymouth won’t be, if I move to Haiti or Paris or Timbuktu one day, they won’t be home either. My home is in heaven. I am a citizen there, and it’s kind of inevitable that there will be times when I just feel like a wanderer on this earth. It kind of reminds me of something Jesus said:

“Foxes have dens and birds have nests, but the Son of Man has no place to lay his head.” (Matt. 8:20)

Jesus’ home was with his Father, as is mine. So I’m thankful for this weird feeling that is reminding me of that, and I’m praying that God will use this change to get me out of my comfort zone and kick out some apathy, too.

relentless love

Went on a walk with Dad a few nights ago to spend some quality time. What a guy.

Went on a walk with Dad a few nights ago to spend some quality time. What a guy.

This weekend is a pretty big one for our family – today is my dad’s birthday and my parent’s 35th anniversary, and it all falls on Father’s Day weekend! Yesterday we all celebrated together with 4 dads – my Dad, Grandpa, brother-in-law, his dad – and the rest of our family members. We went out to eat, had WAY too much dessert, and just had a really nice time. In the midst of all this, I think it’s pretty important that I stop and thank God that my family is not only intact, but seeking to serve Him as well.

I don’t know what it feels like to have parents who hate each other, or siblings who’ve completely dropped off the map, or a father who was never there. I know this isn’t the case for many people I know and love, and when these kind of family times roll around and everyone posts the mandatory Facebook photo of them enjoying these moments together, I can’t help but feel for people who are left wondering what happened to their family. I can’t even imagine what life would be like without mine. But I think something I’ve realized during my time at school is that good relationships are intentional relationships. For most of my life, without me consciously realizing it, my parents have cared for ME, set up times with ME, pursued ME. They’re not perfect by any means, but they’ve given me an awesome picture of God’s love for me, intentionally pursuing me even when I mess up.

Away from home, I had to realize that it’s my turn to be intentional. I realized that I have to make more of an effort to connect with people if I really desire a deeper relationship. As an introvert, sometimes that’s pretty hard for me. Sometimes all I want is to curl up with a good book, watch a movie, or finish a craft project to recharge. But then I remember that it’s people that matter. (Not that recharge time is bad – it’s actually pretty dang important.) In the end, it probably doesn’t matter if I knit a hundred sweaters or finish all my homework the day it was assigned or check everything off my to-do list on a particular day – but if I can encourage someone, show them I care, make them smile, point them to Jesus with my time, it’s worth it. So, so many people with hurting families don’t have a reference point for that relentless love that I’ve gotten a taste of through my family.  So Jesus calls us to love them. They may not have earthly families, but we can “adopt” them into ours and show them what it feels like to be wanted and pursued. Just little things like sharing a meal, giving a ride, asking more than surface level questions, and opening your home can make the gospel relatable. Often times these little things are really big things when you look back at them. Sometimes in the everyday I lose sight of this and slip back into my happy little snow globe of comfort. But Jesus didn’t come to earth to be stifled in a glass bubble. So today, I choose relentless love.

The Freedom Project

Hey errybody! Just wanted to share with you my photography portfolio project! I got to spend 8 weeks shooting for my theme, and I’m really happy with how it turned out. I call it “The Freedom Project” – I wanted to take a personal look at how the light of the gospel sets us free! I chose to use two images for each work to represent how the truth of Christ (light) stops us in our tracks and then how we can stand fearlessly in that freedom that is found in truth. Thanks SO MUCH to everyone who helped out with this! All photos were taken with an Ultra Wide & Slim 35mm toy camera. If you want to read more about the concept, my artist statement is here.

photography project filmAlex - the freedom projectsarah - the freedom projectnina -  - the freedom projectcharissa - the freedom projectrichard - the freedom projectamelia - the freedom projecttina  - the freedom projectgloria  - the freedom projectscott - the freedom projectbecky  - the freedom projectsteph  - the freedom projectandrew - the freedom projecttyler - the freedom project

 

 

“To him who is able to keep you from stumbling and to present you before his glorious presence without fault and with great joy —  to the only God our Savior be glory, majesty, power and authority, through Jesus Christ our Lord, before all ages, now and forevermore! Amen.” {Jude 24-25}

“Holding On To You” cover!

If you’ve known me for any length of time, you probably know how much I love music – and not just listening to it. I love playing, learning new instruments, coming up with melodies, and writing songs. I started piano lessons when I was six and picked up electric and acoustic guitar on my own (thanks, Internet!) when I was in middle school. My friends and I started a worship band and I picked up a bit of bass and drums during practices when we were all goofing off.

All this to say, music is great. It amazes me when I think about how God created each key and note and that he puts this desire to create something new and amazing within us. One of my new favorite bands of late is Twenty One Pilots – their music just has this way of capturing exactly what I’m feeling and expressing it in such a genuine and passionate way. So since I was trying to avoid doing homework yesterday on my day off, I recorded a cover of “Holding On To You”! It’s one of my favorites from their newer album. Hope you like it!

Some of my other favorite Twenty One Pilots songs are “Addict With A Pen,” “Trees,” “Car Radio,” and “House of Gold”. Seriously, check them out!

An Introduction

Hey there! Welcome to my blog!

miniShootEdit-0099My name is Stephanie Joy Seitz, and I am a nineteen year-old college student studying graphic design and web development. I attend the ever-fantastic Grace College in Winona Lake, Indiana but call South Bend home during the summer. Part of my heart will always long for the pacific northwest though – I was born in Tacoma, Washington and I thoroughly enjoy the scent of pine trees and the sound of rain on my roof. Jesus is my savior and my best friend, and it’s mindblowing that he wants to use me for his glory despite my daily failures. Some other things that I really love are:

Family. Traveling. Missions. Thrifting. Making crazy memories. Crafting. Photography. Discovering talented indie bands. Adoption. Writing songs. Worship. Good typography. Vintage and toy cameras. Vintage fashion. Vinyl records. Knitting. Color palettes. Tennis. Coffee dates with friends. Coffee. Caffeine in general. Electric guitars. Curling up with a good book. Camping.

Still with me? I have a lot of really varied interests… so I hope this blog won’t be too ADD. But really I’m mostly hoping to be able to share some little snapshots of my life with you, whether it’s craft projects I’m working on, what I’m listening to, one of my passions or something God’s teaching me through both the little stuff and the big stuff. Blogging wasn’t really something I ever planned to do, but recently I’ve realized how much I process through writing (or typing, I suppose) my thoughts. So whether or not anyone actually reads this, I’m praying that it will be a way to help me see what really matters so I can DO what really matters. That, and an outlet for some of my creativity! Happy reading, friends!