Tuesday, May 31, 2011

[new blog]

i started a new blog called Marc's Musings at http://www.mpguzman.blogspot.com- check it out and subscribe!!

Marc

Friday, December 31, 2010

[best (and worst) of 2010 ]

2010 is just hours from being over... wow...how fast the time flies?! I do this every year since I've blogged on Xanga in 2002, so I will keep up my annual list of my personal top 10 best of 2010 and the top 5 worst! 2010 was definitely crazy, had its ups and downs; I hope 2011 is just as crazy and a lot better!

Top 5 Worst

5. Killing Bambi with my Car - In my 6 years of driving, I had never hit anything while driving...let alone an animal but when that deer decided to commit suicide in front of my car, I was so devastated. It was an open road so I would floor it, but little to my knowledge, Bambi was waiting at the next bend in the road to cut the cord!
4. Bambi leaving a dent... and then some  - Just when I thought that killing Bambi was the worst thing, little did I know that she would completely damage my headlamp and leave a remembrance of her with it... see left :(
3. Debt overload- the mixture of bad spending habits, student loans, and lots of car repairs led to a depressing few months of debt overload. I really couldnt concentrate on school or anything but my debt..it was rough believe me

2. New York Giants and Eli Manning -- need I say more :(

1. Graduating College -- leaving UD undergrad was definitely a sad time(but happy at the same time, check below)...It would be the last time I would see a lot of my friends which definitely got me in a rut. Even though I would go back to UD for Grad School, it was definitely the end for an era for me.. Things would change. 


BEST OF 2010
10. URBANA 2009-2010 - I rang in the new year worshipping with over 24,000 other Christians from all around the world at Urbana in St. Louis... I learned about global missions, how to hear God's calling, and to really understand God's love and our response to that towards ourselves, each other, and God. Definitely an epic road trip to St. Louis and I was able to get closer with God and find myself. 


9. Daytona Missions Trip - definitely one of the best spring breaks I've ever had -- I was able to have what may be the closest thing to the regular "College Spring Break" because I was in warm Florida and on the beach but I was there for anything but "regular". I pushed myself out of my comfort zone and spoke to beach-goers about God and had some amazing and challenging conversations. I also got really close with my friends and learned that my car could handle 17 hours back and forth!

8. Graduated College -- I know this was in my worst of 2010, but this  was definitely also an amazing feat for me. For years ago, I had totally different intentions for my major and degree. The last four years saw so many changes in major and minor and I didn't know I was going to graduate with the major I wanted to, let alone graduate on time! Walking in May 2010 was rewarding...I knew that four years was definitely over and it was my time to leave. 

7. Getting into Grad School- hah so of course you know I got into UD for grad school, so its like I never left right? Wrong. Its definitely a lot different. New Friends. New Apartment. New Classes. New style of learning and studying....I didnt know I was going to even get in because of my undergraduate GPA and I applied really late so I didnt know if there were any spots left. But God had a different plan and decided that this was where I needed to be. I LOVE this program and I know its what I want to do.. among many things heh

6. Getting a Full Ride for Grad School(and then some) -- So I was able to secure a graduate assistantship that would pay for my full tuition at school and provide me with more than $15K a year on top of that for living and other expenses! It's definitely helped me out a lot as it's paying for a lot of my expenses and helping my debt situation. Definitely a huge blessing that I feel I take for granted so much!

5. USPSA Conference and meeting Quinn, Jake, and Courtney - so in high school I was really a big part of the US Public Service Academy and trying to get a bill passed in Congress to build it. I hadn't really been too involved with it in undergrad but they invited me to a conference in DC where we would lobby on Capitol Hill and try to get it passed. Little did I know was I would find some pretty amazing friends that I would gain for a lifetime...I met Courtney bc she was also a Coca Cola Scholar but with her were two rising HS seniors Jake and Quinn who I would become really close with in just three days. We all still communicate with each other SO much and I'm so happy i went on that random conference because I wouldn't have met them.

4. Spragg Lake -- So I went to Brianna Spragg's lake house for a day this summer in the Poconos and may have been the greatest time I've spent away from civilization and just time with God, friends, and nature. We had so much fun swimming in the freezing lake, playing crazy games, having dance parties and burning cookies. We had long talks about God and spent some time sitting by the dock...It was there that I got really close with Ryan Jones and Sean Spurdle.. two of my best friends...

3. Middetown HS Marching Band -- wow.. so I didn't think I was going to be teaching color guard or marching band this fall due to Grad school, but something or someONe kept telling me to stay at middletown this  year after failing to find a replacement for me and Jess. This may have been the best decision ever. The band did amazingly well, no matter what the judges put on paper, but more importantly, I found a family I always wanted. The band kids became some of my greatest friends and they just love each other so much and took me in as if I was a part of the band. Sure the band show was amazing, and our football team made it all the way to finals, but I think it was the kids that kept me there and encouraged me cut class so I could be with them. It was all worth it b/c I did well this semester and I had some quality time with the band...I miss them dearly right now. 

2. FCA Camp - So in May, Meghan Morrow asked me if I wanted to join her and Matt Brianik in going to be a coach/huddle leader at Fellowship of Christian Athlete's Summer Sports Power Camp at Kutztown University. I wasn't going to go because it would interfere with work, but I worked it out some how.... I was kind of afraid because they put me with baseball, a sport I knew little about...but the group, with my co-leader David Guarino, took me in with open arms. And I would have one of the most amazing weeks of my life. Being a leader of 11 high school guys who were so in love with baseball, each other, and God.... it was amazing. I saw hundreds of athletes accept Christ for the first time and I saw miracles happen.....I would soon become best friends with a couple of them... and would change my entire life forever..

1. Fantastic 4 - and Brian - From FCA camp, a bunch of us would meet up this summer at the jersey shore and would become some of my best friends... Ubowski, Scags and Robbie would become some of my best friends from FCA. They have been there through thick and thin and they have provided me with amazing friendship and fellowship and brotherhood. I had a rough last few months of 2010 and if it wasn't for them, I didn't know what I would do. I would go to Harleysville to hang with Ubowski and the Souderton guys which have been amazing and I've been able to go over to the Jersey shore a lot and get to know Robbie and Scagnelli. Robbie had a really good friend named Brian who goes to Coastal Carolina, and through the internet, I've become really good friends with. I honestly don't know what I would do without him. We talk on oovoo almost every day and he is such an amazing guy. He has no idea how amazing he is, thats what makes him so amazing. God definitely sent these guys to me during a time of loneliness and depression, when I didnt know who my true friends were and when I was transition from undergrad to grad school. I was a wreck, and God provided me with these four guys....to provide me with loyal friends and everlasting relationships....Thanks God and thanks guys :)

Hope y'all have an amazing 2011!

[best (and worst) of 2010 ]

2010 is just hours from being over... wow...how fast the time flies?! I do this every year since I've blogged on Xanga in 2002, so I will keep up my annual list of my personal top 10 best of 2010 and the top 5 worst! 2010 was definitely crazy, had its ups and downs; I hope 2011 is just as crazy and a lot better!

Top 5 Worst

5. Killing Bambi with my Car - In my 6 years of driving, I had never hit anything while driving...let alone an animal but when that deer decided to commit suicide in front of my car, I was so devastated. It was an open road so I would floor it, but little to my knowledge, Bambi was waiting at the next bend in the road to cut the cord!
4. Bambi leaving a dent... and then some  - Just when I thought that killing Bambi was the worst thing, little did I know that she would completely damage my headlamp and leave a remembrance of her with it... see left :(
3. Debt overload- the mixture of bad spending habits, student loans, and lots of car repairs led to a depressing few months of debt overload. I really couldnt concentrate on school or anything but my debt..it was rough believe me

2. New York Giants and Eli Manning -- need I say more :(





1. Graduating College -- leaving UD undergrad was definitely a sad time(but happy at the same time, check below)...It would be the last time I would see a lot of my friends which definitely got me in a rut. Even though I would go back to UD for Grad School, it was definitely the end for an era for me.. Things would change. 


BEST OF 2010
10. URBANA 2009-2010 - I rang in the new year worshipping with over 24,000 other Christians from all around the world at Urbana in St. Louis... I learned about global missions, how to hear God's calling, and to really understand God's love and our response to that towards ourselves, each other, and God. Definitely an epic road trip to St. Louis and I was able to get closer with God and find myself. 


9. Daytona Missions Trip - definitely one of the best spring breaks I've ever had -- I was able to have what may be the closest thing to the regular "College Spring Break" because I was in warm Florida and on the beach but I was there for anything but "regular". I pushed myself out of my comfort zone and spoke to beach-goers about God and had some amazing and challenging conversations. I also got really close with my friends and learned that my car could handle 17 hours back and forth!

8. Graduated College -- I know this was in my worst of 2010, but this  was definitely also an amazing feat for me. For years ago, I had totally different intentions for my major and degree. The last four years saw so many changes in major and minor and I didn't know I was going to graduate with the major I wanted to, let alone graduate on time! Walking in May 2010 was rewarding...I knew that four years was definitely over and it was my time to leave. 

7. Getting into Grad School- hah so of course you know I got into UD for grad school, so its like I never left right? Wrong. Its definitely a lot different. New Friends. New Apartment. New Classes. New style of learning and studying....I didnt know I was going to even get in because of my undergraduate GPA and I applied really late so I didnt know if there were any spots left. But God had a different plan and decided that this was where I needed to be. I LOVE this program and I know its what I want to do.. among many things heh

6. Getting a Full Ride for Grad School(and then some) -- So I was able to secure a graduate assistantship that would pay for my full tuition at school and provide me with more than $15K a year on top of that for living and other expenses! It's definitely helped me out a lot as it's paying for a lot of my expenses and helping my debt situation. Definitely a huge blessing that I feel I take for granted so much!

5. USPSA Conference and meeting Quinn, Jake, and Courtney - so in high school I was really a big part of the US Public Service Academy and trying to get a bill passed in Congress to build it. I hadn't really been too involved with it in undergrad but they invited me to a conference in DC where we would lobby on Capitol Hill and try to get it passed. Little did I know was I would find some pretty amazing friends that I would gain for a lifetime...I met Courtney bc she was also a Coca Cola Scholar but with her were two rising HS seniors Jake and Quinn who I would become really close with in just three days. We all still communicate with each other SO much and I'm so happy i went on that random conference because I wouldn't have met them.

4. Spragg Lake -- So I went to Brianna Spragg's lake house for a day this summer in the Poconos and may have been the greatest time I've spent away from civilization and just time with God, friends, and nature. We had so much fun swimming in the freezing lake, playing crazy games, having dance parties and burning cookies. We had long talks about God and spent some time sitting by the dock...It was there that I got really close with Ryan Jones and Sean Spurdle.. two of my best friends...

3. Middetown HS Marching Band -- wow.. so I didn't think I was going to be teaching color guard or marching band this fall due to Grad school, but something or someONe kept telling me to stay at middletown this  year after failing to find a replacement for me and Jess. This may have been the best decision ever. The band did amazingly well, no matter what the judges put on paper, but more importantly, I found a family I always wanted. The band kids became some of my greatest friends and they just love each other so much and took me in as if I was a part of the band. Sure the band show was amazing, and our football team made it all the way to finals, but I think it was the kids that kept me there and encouraged me cut class so I could be with them. It was all worth it b/c I did well this semester and I had some quality time with the band...I miss them dearly right now. 

2. FCA Camp - So in May, Meghan Morrow asked me if I wanted to join her and Matt Brianik in going to be a coach/huddle leader at Fellowship of Christian Athlete's Summer Sports Power Camp at Kutztown University. I wasn't going to go because it would interfere with work, but I worked it out some how.... I was kind of afraid because they put me with baseball, a sport I knew little about...but the group, with my co-leader David Guarino, took me in with open arms. And I would have one of the most amazing weeks of my life. Being a leader of 11 high school guys who were so in love with baseball, each other, and God.... it was amazing. I saw hundreds of athletes accept Christ for the first time and I saw miracles happen.....I would soon become best friends with a couple of them... and would change my entire life forever..

1. Fantastic 4 - and Brian - From FCA camp, a bunch of us would meet up this summer at the jersey shore and would become some of my best friends... Ubowski, Scags and Robbie would become some of my best friends from FCA. They have been there through thick and thin and they have provided me with amazing friendship and fellowship and brotherhood. I had a rough last few months of 2010 and if it wasn't for them, I didn't know what I would do. I would go to Harleysville to hang with Ubowski and the Souderton guys which have been amazing and I've been able to go over to the Jersey shore a lot and get to know Robbie and Scagnelli. Robbie had a really good friend named Brian who goes to Coastal Carolina, and through the internet, I've become really good friends with. I honestly don't know what I would do without him. We talk on oovoo almost every day and he is such an amazing guy. He has no idea how amazing he is, thats what makes him so amazing. God definitely sent these guys to me during a time of loneliness and depression, when I didnt know who my true friends were and when I was transition from undergrad to grad school. I was a wreck, and God provided me with these four guys....to provide me with loyal friends and everlasting relationships....Thanks God and thanks guys :)

Hope y'all have an amazing 2011!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

[there is light at the end of the tunnel]

Monday night, while I was studying for a final exam in the student center, one of my old friends came by and asked me how I was doing. I didn't want to lie to him and say "I'm great", so I pretty much told him what was up and how I was struggling... what he told me after changed everything:

"God will never give us more than we can handle. He is doing great things in you Marc. While this may seem like a rough time for you, He is shaping and molding you for bigger and better things He has in store." and then we spoke about James 1:2-4 which says "Consider it  pure JOY, my brothers, when you face trials of many kinds. For the testing of your faith develops PERSEVERANCE." 

Boy did I needed that. 

Anyway's an update of how things are going. I feel like every day He shows me how much I doubt His power in my life, so He keeps providing me with what I need at the moment I need it. After getting declined one of my loans like three times, I finally got approved and now waiting for details. I checked my bank account the other day, and it was twice the amount it was the day before. I think one of my jobs from the summer decided to finally pay me! Middletown's marching band is buying the videos/picture sets I made for the season and thats definitely helping me out.

So while I am agonizing over the unexpected expenses I have incurred over the last few weeks, He still finds a way to defy my expectations and come up with just enough to get me through. 

I am blessed...
Truly...

I also thank the number of people who have showed compassion and concern for me. It really means a lot that you care about whats going on in my life and I appreciate the support you have given me. Thank you so much

Marc

Monday, November 29, 2010

[still struggling to breathe]

It seems like my life gets harder and harder every day. I wasn't able to pay the minimum monthly payment for my credit card debt on Friday...I barely made my electric payment....and my car is in need of repairs and new tires.  Just when I thought it was bad, I got into an annoying accident on Sunday on the way to DE from NJ, hitting a deer and ruining my headlights... probably another $400+ of damages...

I relaxed a bit way too much this weekend and didnt do ANY of the  work I was supposed to get done. And this happens to be the most hectic week of my life.. and I found that out yesterday...

Im struggling to find work for winter session to pay off my debt and I need to get a loan for my classes...

Too much to think about and I'm honestly bogged down....

While walking to work today I prayed to God.... "I NEED A MIRACLE"...

And then I remembered that 2000, that Miracle I asked for came in human form.... and that I need not worry in this world..

I really WANT to believe that and have that in my heart... that despite the struggles of this world, I have overcome because HE overcame... I want to believe that and live like it...

It's tough.... really it is....

Sunday, November 21, 2010

[temporary gasp for air]

the last few days have been "bittersweet"..."sweet" because its the most fun ive had in a while: bowling with cohort, harry potter 7 with small group, bon fire, UD football tailgate, and ud volleyball game tonight.... just legit fun and kind of helped me forget about the circumstance i am in...."bitter" because amidst all this happiness, im currently in the toughest two months ive ever had to face...

dealing with this debt has been the hardest thing...im living paycheck to paycheck, unable to pay off my credit card $4000 debt because i only get paid enough to pay what I owe that month, and unable to pay even the minimum per month...i would get notices in the mail with electricity and cable threatening to turn off service if I dont pay, and with God's grace I have been able to pay it at the last minute...

my car is proving to be a detriment to me, as i couple months ago the mechanics told me I needed new tires plus about $500 worth of brake repairs... so while I fear for my life as I drive, I know I can't afford to pay for even the new tires...

i even begged my work to increase my monthly disbursement of my stipend or giving me a lump sum to pay off my debt, but they said it goes against their policies....so I continue to incur interest as I fail to make payments for my credit card...

grad school decides to surprise me and make me pay for winter session, which had I known I had to pay for, would have not agreed to apply... but now I have to ask for  $4500 loan for winter session which I dont know how I'll get approved.

what's worse is that i have no support whatsoever... my parents are completely upset with me, and my mom has been ignoring my phone calls...the people who I usually can count on to provide me comfort and tell me "its going to be okay" have left me in the dust... im embarrassed to go home for thanksgiving because I dont want to show my face to my parents... i feel like ive failed them

one thing that has gotten me through was the notion that despite this, God has provided me a victory and I need to understand that while I am struggling in this world, its only temporary and will pass....I know God is testing my faith to see if will remain faithful even in the desert.... "God doesn't necessarily change our circumstances but changes our perspective"--FCA 2010 quote. I'm trying to keep in mind that He will provide and that he has "plans for me, to prosper and not harm me, to provide me hope and a future.."--Jeremiah 29:11

while these times are somber and my circumstances are rough... I understand that "to everything, there is a season, a time to every purpose under the heavens... a time to break down, a time to build up.... a time to laugh, a time to cry, a time to weep, a time to dance..." Ecclessiastes 3:1-8....I don't know what season or reason for everything.. but I know He has a purpose for everything.... when I figure that out, I'll let you know....

Thanks for all the prayers and support....

Marc

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

[gasping for air]

i feel trapped.... i feel like im drowning in an abyss, with my legs shackled, unable to paddle up to the surface for air....i feel like im in a maze with no way out.... i feel hopeless.

$4000 in debt and no money in the bank to pay for food/rent/bills. The money I make with my stipend is able to pay part of it, and I usually have to wait for the next paycheck until its enough to pay one bill, so I'm often behind on my payments.

I know I did this to myself and it was only a matter of time until my habits started to punish me... but I've never been more depressed and stressed about something....

I can't do my homework....I havent been excited to go out and be with friends... when I'm with the people I love, I feel distant. I was hanging with my best friends whom I havent seen in 2 months last weekend, and while I was happy to see them,  I wasn't myself. I wasn't the Marc they knew 2 months ago.... I don't know if they noticed...I tried faking being happy... but I was bothered by the looming dark cloud trailing behind me.

I want to have faith to know that God will provide... but right now its tough when deadlines are missed and bills are overdue. I've been trying to be wise about my spending habits... but theres no hope when Im so far in this hole....

I neeed a miracle...