FYI — August 2017

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WHAT’S INSPIRING?

The other day I tried to make French Macarons, a delicate cookie with an almond flour, egg white, and sugar base. I have successfully made these cookies before, but this time was a total flop. I accidentally mixed up the measurements for the almond flour and sugar, which resulted in an almond cookie—but to my surprise, it wasn’t half bad! I feel like my plans have gone the same way: I start confidently, something changes or an unexpected twist gets thrown my way, then I have to adjust. If I am following God’s will, I find that the end result is even better than what I could have planned!

If you are currently in the “unexpected twists” part of your plan, then check out Bible.com and search “God’s Plan.” Countless verses will come up to encourage you, strengthen you, and remind you of God’s plan for your life. Pick one you like and print it out. Carry it this month as a reminder to trust God’s plan.

WHAT’S TRENDING?

Lately, there’s been a lot of talk about the environment and our impact on the world around us. Genesis 1:12 says, “The land produced vegetation—all sorts of seed-bearing plants, and trees with seed-bearing fruit. Their seeds produced plants and trees of the same kind. And God saw that it was good.” God loves the planet He created, and He entrusted it to us to keep it flourishing. Recently, hot-button issues such as deforestation and climate change have made us aware of our impact on the planet. Trees and plants are important: they clean our air, produce oxygen, and sustain habitats needed for wildlife.

ALivingTribute.org is a website where, for about $10, you can plant a tree in a National Forest in the United States. These trees help to support reforestation efforts and combat the damage humans have done to God’s world. If you can’t afford the $10, head to your local plant nursery and pick out a seed packet to plant around your own yard. We can be the difference to the rest of God’s creatures.

WHAT’S SHOWING?

This summer, I’ve had a list of new movies that I’ve wanted to see in theaters. From superheroes to pirates, scary movies to humor films, it’s been a great summer for going to the movies! But one of the things I always do before going to see a new movie is check out its ratings. I’m not just talking about Rotten Tomato ratings, but on the Christian perspective, as well.

YS now has an awesome section titled “What’s On?” where you can get honest movie and TV show reviews, but if there is something we haven’t covered that you want to see, check out “Plugged In” by Focus on the Family. They have the Christian perspective on movies, music, TV shows, and more. God tells us to guard our hearts (Proverbs 4:23), so even if the world tells us we’ll like something, make sure you get the Godly perspective on everything you allow into your mind.

WHAT’S SOCIAL?

Recently, I was feeling a bit down about my calling. I feel like God has called me to a life of writing for Him, but sometimes it’s easy to be discouraged when you don’t feel like you’re making the impact you want to right away. I can bet there are quite a few young people out there who feel the same way. Can we encourage each other today? What do you feel God is asking you to do? Post a picture of your pursuit on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter with #YSCalling. I want to encourage you this month, so show me what you’re up to! Make sure you are following safe social media procedures and keeping your location and information private, but post the picture publically so I can find it! If you are following God’s plan for your life, you have the best cheerleader of all on your side.

Rachael Boynton | Spring Valley Corps | Greater New York