Friday, January 24, 2014

2 Corinthians 9:15

I've been reading the book of Ezekiel over the last month. It is quite a depressing and terrifying book, but it is also a book of hope. While reading, one phrase kept jumping at me throughout the text - "I am the Lord; I have spoken, and I will do it". God was speaking about brining judgement upon Israel, but this phrase stood out to me and reminded me of his faithfulness. The Lord made it clear that he will guide me ant take care of me, that is why i took this leap of faith called 'college abroad'. He had proved that he would provide, and today he proved it again. Despite all my stress, and occasional panic, i kept my faith in his word.

God works in mysterious ways. Over this week i got responses from people i haven't spoken to in years, and from people i have never met in my life. My down payment was payed off in mere minutes before my classes were supposed to be dropped. I now have access to buildings and my meal plan again.

I thank you all for your support, those who were giving big and a little, those who were praying, encouraging, providing with food, and even those who did nothing. "Those who fear you shall see me and rejoice, because I have hoped in your word". Psalm 119:74

Now i am off to reading and learning, as classes start next week, applying for jobs, and waiting upon the Lord to provide with my next three installments of $1,956 each.

God is good.

Thursday, January 23, 2014

$4,445 to go!

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Moving Forward, One Step At a Time

I got $1,600 of help this week, and I also changed my meal plan to save me $427 for this semester. Now I am $6,000 away from my down payment goal.

I also received a notification email today stating that if i will not complete my enrollment on time, i.e. make the down payment before the final deadline of January 31st, I will have to check out of my dorm. Great news, folks, God is at work.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

About the 'whys'.

Some people kindly mentioned that they don't know what my vision is, and why do I need to study at Biola. It is time to remind, first of all myself, why am I doing all this. So here we go.

My college journey has started when I got a denial to be an intern for the youth ministry i've been volunteering for for about 10 years now. The main reason was my lack of a college degree. That made me consider education seriously.

I chose to apply to Biola because I was looking for a good, strong Christian school with a good media program. At that point I was confident that I wanted to be involved in Christian ministries in the future. I wanted to learn a craft that I was interested in, and learn how to integrate it with my faith to make it work for God's glory.

I chose filmmaking program, because that is what i love to do and i was ready to invest my time in the learning process. Films and short videos inspire me, especially when they tell true stories of real people.

I want to tell stories using visual media. I want to make documentaries and short films and work with a variety of ministries, like youth, orphanages, human trafficking. I want to capture stories of good transformation, of people overcoming their struggles, finding hope, and getting a new life. A rehab farm for ex drug addicts, an ex pimp who helps to get the girls out of sex slavery, sportsmen who put their goals and values above the gold medals. Through my work, I want to inspire others, raise an awareness of a problem, and share the gospel of Christ.

Projects that inspire me personally are I Am Second and Nations Films. I want my country to have this kind of good quality media resources that churches may use for their ministries, to reach out to people, and just be available on the web. Some Russian churches use a lot of foreign, translated material, but I believe it is not the same as having your own resources made in your country, in your own language, telling stories of people from your country and culture. Same is with a lot of missionaries who come from other countries to serve in Russia. They do a great job, but they come from a different culture, speaking a foreign language.

I want to learn the craft built on a strong Biblical foundation and go to my home country to be able to reach out to my nation. I was born in Russia and lived there all my life, I know my culture and the needs of people.

Biola is a great fit to get my degree and get me equipped for the work i want to do in the future. It has been a privilege to be accepted into a very competitive Film program, and Torrey Honors program. The professors here care for your growth as a whole person. Strong Christian values and doctrines, and amazing Cinema and Media Arts department with great opportunities to learn hands-on out of the classroom throughout all 4 years - this is a very unique opportunity for me.

As an international student, i am facing a lot of struggles. I am limited with the financial aid i qualify for, with job opportunities, medical care. Not to mention the culture differences, and speaking a second language every single day. But all of it is manageable and with the help from different people I am blessed with, I can overcome these difficulties. It's worth the fight.

The biggest struggle i am facing is inability to pay for my education. My family is not able to help, and i am absolutely dependent on the financial support from others. With $7,000 worth of scholarships for this semester, I am in need of $14,000. I have to make a down payment of $8,200 (my savings of $600 already subtracted) by Friday, January 24 to avoid my classes being dropped.

If you would like to invest into future ministry development in Russia through helping me get my degree, you can give a gift straight to my Biola account 
[By mail: Checks may be mailed to the Accounting Office, 13800 Biola Ave, La Mirada CA 90639. Be sure to include the student name and ID number - Ekaterina Makarova 1554167
By phone : Call the Accounting Office at (562) 903-4760]. 
I can also add you as an authorized used to my account if you wish to make a payment electronically. 

OR you can send a check or wire money to my account at Bank of America. Please contact me for information via email or phone 951-310-1734

Thank you for your consideration.

Thursday, January 16, 2014

More trials, more blessings

Today has been an interesting day. I went to the school cafeteria for breakfast and found out that my meal plan was blocked, as well as the access to any building on campus. I went to talk to the office people, and they told me it is because my status for the spring semester is still 'not enrolled', because i didn't make the down payment before yesterday, January 15th. My meal plan and access to buildings will resume after I make the payment. And i have till Friday, January 24 to do so, or my classes will be dropped.

For now, I have to survive on peanut butter, kindness of people around me, prayers, and i have to wait outside my dorm every time till someone would open the door so i could get in.

Sunday, January 12, 2014

Little miracles. And grades.

Today I went to see my account statement and found out that I got another $1,000 for my International Student grant! Praise be to the God in the highest. I am still $14,000 short on my tuition though.

And here are my first semester grades, if you were wondering.

Saturday, January 4, 2014

New account statement

After adding the health insurance for $920, my new bill is $15,340