Gifting & Giving

This is the second post to continue the 12 blogs of Christmas!christmas comic

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THANK$GIVING!

Hello guys and dolls,

My name is Jill Agustin, and I am a frequent blogger on this site. Usually, I express myself with cute little comics, but this time I decided to try my hand at a good ol’ fashioned text post.

This past holiday weekend, I thought a lot about all the things I am grateful for. I was forced into one of those “tell everyone what you’re thankful for” speeches around the dinner table on Thanksgiving Monday. While I enjoyed it in the end, I couldn’t help but feel the pressure of coming up with something fresh and original. Who cares if I’m thankful for my friends and family?–so is everyone else! Thankful for 3 meals a day and a warm home to live in?–how cliche! I desperately tried to find something interesting to say, but I finally settled on being thankful for close support groups in my life. This was somewhat different than the cookie-cutter answers, but I still felt a little bit unsettled in what I had said.

To be 100% honest, there was something else that I wanted to share that night. I didn’t say it because it felt a little pretentious, maybe a little too “fresh or original”.

Ultimately, I wanted to thank God for His financial provision in my life. That’s right. God, thank you for giving me money.

“But Jill!” you might say, ” God providing for your financial needs? That’s awesome, definitely something to be thankful for!”

Yes, you might say that, but I’ve had other reactions too. Some people are sceptical, as if they feel that God isn’t capable of giving them money when they need it. They don’t believe me when I say that God cares about all aspects of our lives, including our bank accounts.

Well let me drop a truth bomb on you: God gives us money when we need it. It’s as simple as that. Two verses that may shed some light are both found in Matthew:

Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear… But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself…

– Matthew 6:25, 33 and 34 (I also did another blog post on verse 34 which you can read here)

Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened to you.”

– Matthew 7:7

Now God isn’t some ATM who will give us money just because we punch in a magical PIN. Matthew 6:33 tells us to “seek first the kingdom of God”, meaning God provides for those who obey and follow him completely in their every day lives, not just when they’re hard up for cash.

The second verse tells us that we actually have to ASK. God is all knowing, but he wants us to take the first step of coming to Him with our needs. Once we approach Him, He is only too happy to answer.

I’ll end this with a personal anecdote. This experience was a huge boost to my faith because it showed me how much God loves me in very tangible ways.

In the summer right before my first semester of starting university, I faced a dilemma. I could either find a summer job to pay for school, or not make a cent by volunteering for a 6-week missions trip ministering kids around Canada through Day Camps (which you can learn more about here!) To most people, it would be a no brainer to stay in Montreal and work, because it’s no secret that university bills don’t pay for themselves. But I felt God calling me to the mission field, so I decided to trust Him that everything would be taken care of.

I went. It was a summer filled with sweat, tears and mosquito bites, but I also left with many happy memories of kids I had met and several new friendships along the road. It was a wonderful summer. But the situation hadn’t changed–I was still broke.

But this is how God worked in the behind the scenes: unbeknownst to me, my mom signed me up for a scholarship for “young achievers” while I was away. A large part of my personal resume had to do with my volunteer work on Day Camps. I only discovered that she had nominated me when I got back from my trip. I ended up being chosen as a finalist, and got invited to the awards ceremony. I honestly only expected to get out of there with a consolation prize of $100. I had read up on the other contestants, and they seemed to have much more impressive CVs than me.

I ended up winning the first place prize of $2000, enough to pay for my first semester’s tuition.

You may argue that I deserved it after all of my hard work. But the way I see it, God was totally involved in that whole process. If I hadn’t given up all of my time for Him in the past, who’s to say I would have been considered for that scholarship, let alone winning the grand prize?

The best part is that that is only ONE of the instances in which God has provided for my financial needs. He has proven again and again in my life that He is looking out for me.

So God, THANK$!!!

#countdowntocamp: Jillian Agustin

Hello my friends! I’m back with yet another comic. For the #countdowntocamp, I was asked to talk about what makes Senior Youth Camp so special to me. Here goes nothing…

P.S. I apologize for the large chunks of text but please, give me a break  >__<

butterfly comicIf you haven’t registered for camp already, (WHICH IS CRAZY BECAUSE YOU JUST MISSED THE EARLY BIRD RATE!!!) you can still sign up! Click here for online registration, or visit to the official website for more details.

Camp of Awesome

 

 

 

Hello guys and dolls!

I am a very visual person. I find expressing myself through words really difficult, and have always preferred drawing stuff out rather than writing it down, hence, my history of comics on this blog. I had an incredible time at camp this year, and after reading through the “Book of Awesome” submissions, I was super pumped to see what you guys thought of SYC 2014.  What some of you guys said was really, really inspiring, so rather than doing my regular comics I tried something a little different.

BoA 1“Double dose of Minecraft = AWESOME! (was this planned?)”
“Cabin fairies are awesome!”

BoA 2“Camp is awesome! I love both Josiahs’ smiles”

BoA 3“Ashley is awesome because she caught a moth like a ninja. NINJA.”

BoA 4“The super enthusiastic staff!!! And Tom’s beard.”

BoA 5“Tea time on a rainy day is awesome!”
“Stickers on napkins are awesome.”

I hope this helped you remember all of your favourite moments from camp. I’m looking forward to seeing all of you at Crossroads to re-tell stories in person!

See you then!
– Jill

P.S. All of these quotes are taken directly from the BoA submissions; I changed nothing!