Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Chosen Pathways...

This is something I sent in December to some supporters, after returning from Costa Rica.

it's still going to be a little while, as I process my thoughts & feelings about Mexico and get it posted. But I had a friend ask for another copy of this and thought, "let's post it on the blog" here it is. :o)

I recently read the following quote “ Remember, only 2 things are eternal: God (& His word), & the Souls of People. How that statement rings true. For me it seems to touch into my soul in it’s simple honesty. God and people are the only things that really matter. And one often, if not always, affects the other.
I’ll be honest (not that I’m not normally honest) I’ve had a hard time gathering all my thoughts from this past trip to Costa Rica. I can’t tell you why because I’m not fully sure myself. It truly was a great trip. We did a lot of good, working in the homeless shelter, working with different area churches, performing in different areas around the city. We went places that people in the city had never been themselves and were able to minister to people no matter where we were.
Yet in spite of all that I’ve struggled to be able to tell about the trip. Maybe it’s because this trip seemed to stir so many different emotions. I’m a crier ...I seem to always cry at the end of the mission trips, I’ve even started to look at it as seed watering...since so many seeds are planted for Christ on a trip, but this trip at the end I cried more, more then I normally do. And I’m not sure why. To me it didn’t make sense. And after processing the trip it still doesn’t totally make sense. I partially think it was because God moved. And not just in the normal ways he does. I think part of it was our team. We had a truly great team. One that had to have been hand picked by God and one that flowed and moved together so very well. We didn’t have issues learning the 30 minute drama that was new to almost all of us, we got along wonderfully as well, and who would have thought that possible with a team that was full of teenagers... they out numbered the adults on the trip. :)
But for me I think it was just being used by God in a more familiar way, a way of leading, helping those who needed help, comforting when comfort was needed, offering wisdom and just soaking up his presence. Having God meet us in the small moments as well as the big moments that we often don’t take the time to notice when we are here at home. Just allowing Him to lead us down his chosen path, where ever it may lead. Like the picture on this page, we can’t see around the bend, but knowing who made the road allows us a peace to follow the path no matter where it may take us.
While I don’t know where 2010’s path will lead me, perhaps to Mexico, the Dominican, Africa or some place entirely new, I will trust and follow the one who knows just where that path should go.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

back to life...

I'm back, safe and sound from Mexico.
We hit a few check points where we were stopped and also stopped by the cops several times on our way to the small town El Higo since they were curious as to what we were doing and well hoping for a bribe from our drivers as well ;o)
that's just kind of how it works.

I'll have a real post with some pictures and all that up soon. I'm just a tad behind right now, attempting to catch up and all that. But I can't wait to tell you all about it.

Thank you again for all your prayers.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Going, going, about to be gone...

Well, this will be my last post for about 10 days.

If you read this and I haven't posted again please pray for me, the team I'll be with as well as all the people we come in contact with.

I'm headed to Mexico for a mission trip and we will be working on an orphanage as well as ministering in a very poor town.

We are praying that God will do many mighty things through us and in us.
I'm praying that lives will be changed, not just those of the Mexican people but also the lives of each one of us who will be working there.

I know some of you are worried about the safety of us with all the attacks by the border, please don't fear for us. God is directing our steps and will care for us. But please pray, He will move through your prayers. :)

Love you all!

Matthew 28: 19 &20
Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. Ans surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.

Praise...even in the trials?

Psalm 34:1 -I will extol the LORD at all times; his praise will always be on my lips.

The psalmist's resolve is to praise God in every situation and under every circumstance. Is this verse, David is giving praise to God for protection and deliverance from his enemies.

Do you praise Him during times of trial as well as times of deliverance?

This was in my inbox this morning from the daily Bible verse that I receive. The funny thing is as I go through this time that I'm struggling I really feel like it's all for the best. I know that the struggle is of my own making, I knew that what I was doing would lead to some hurt in the long run no matter how long it went on. But as I look at where I am today, I can see the good that came out of this.

See I knew for some time that my relationship with God was slipping, I don't think anyone else knew, in fact I'm almost positive of that. But my quite times were not as they should have been and most times not at all. I spent no time studying my Bible, no real time praying. I felt disconnected from God in a lot of ways.

Now I am MAKING time to draw close to Him, to lean on Him, to SEEK His face. I know that largely is because I need His strength more than ever right now. But my goodness it is so wonderful to do these things. Now don't get me wrong, I still have evenings even now where I think to myself I just want to go to bed, I can skip this and make it up tomorrow. But knowing where I was I'm in some ways forcing myself to follow through no matter what. And that is helping me, more than I think I realize at times.

Last night I was hurting. And after I finished my Bible reading and crying out to God (which is EXACTLY what it was) I wrote the following (plus a little more that I'm not going to add on here, in case it seems a little off, that's why).

Sometimes feel like I'm going crazy. My thoughts are jumbled, my heart's constricted. I didn't want to admit the feelings. Now I can't help but admit them. With tears shed the truth is uttered. But don't worry; those words are now only spoken between me and God. He knows and in that there is safety. I will prevail, with God's help over this. One day my heart will be healed fully again. And one day I will be much better. I won't lie to you if you ask how I am, but I won't share all the things I now recognize in me, things that were there that I held back. And that's ok because you don't need to know.
This is the right thing.

I cannot help but say again how thankful I am that we serve a God that loves us so much that He extends His grace to us in all these things. That all we have to do is ask for forgiveness, for comfort (and let's face it most of the time we don't have to ask for that), for love. And He freely gives it just like a true loving Father would.

Monday, March 15, 2010


You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden. Neither do people light a lamp and put it under a bowl. Instead they put it on its stand, and it gives light to everyone in the house. In the same way, let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven. - Matthew 5:14-16(NIV)

Do you ever feel like you’re hiding your light? You know maybe not totally, but somewhat. Kind of like how they (you know they, whoever they are) put a scarf over a lamp, so the light is there but it’s “distorted” not anywhere near as bright, not giving off nearly as much light and often a different color.

Hopefully you know what I mean. And while that distorted light can be pretty (and maybe useful in some situations) it’s still distorting the TRUE light.

Since most of you who read this know me, you’ve probably figured out that I’m not just talking about actual lamps with light bulbs light. (Hence the reason for the scripture at the top.) That’s right I’m talking about our lights as Christians. Or even more specifically my light. Recently I’ve “distorted” my light, so that it makes it easier on others. So you see, they can see my light. But it’s not so bright, not nearly as bright as it would be without that hanker chief and not nearly bright enough to shine where it “hurts” their eyes. Now don’t get me wrong I’m not saying that it should be offensive, but at the same time I’m not saying that it shouldn’t be. Our lives as Christians should be that light, that thing that leads others to Him, to the truth.And while that light may offend, it doesn’t mean that we should dim our light. The eye is the lamp of the body. If your eyes are good, your whole body will be full of light. But if your eyes are bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light within you is darkness, how great is that darkness! - Matthew 6:22-23 – Now don’t get me wrong, we are not to be the offensive ones. It’s like the whole “you catch more flies with honey than vinegar” thing. We should be sweet, loving, caring…not argumentative. I’ve got some examples of that below, pay close attention to the words in orange and I think you’ll see my point.

2 Timothy 4:2- Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, exhort, with great patience & instruction.

1 Peter 3: 15- but sanctify Christ as Lord in your hearts, always being ready to make a defense to everyone who asks you to give an account for the hope that is in you, yet with gentleness and reverence.

1 Peter 4:8 Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins.

Please know for those of you that don’t know me that I’m not talking about judging others. That’s not right, and I’ll be honest as a human being I know I sometimes do that; Especially when I see some injustice going on. We’re not called to be the judge of others. (We’re called to love, like it says above). But don’t be fooled, we will all be judged one day by God. Does that make you nervous? Honestly? It does make me nervous. And I think that it should.

1 Peter 4:5 …they will give an account to Him who is ready to judge the living and the dead.

I head to Mexico for my first mission trip of the year on Friday night. There's a lot that I need to do between now and then so if you think of it please keep me in your prayers. And keep my friends and family in your prayers as well as those of the rest of the team. I know that a LOT of people are nervous after what's been going on in border towns lately. But being in the hands of God is the safest place to be. He has called us for this time and purpose and I truely believe he will keep us safe, and if not, well, I've believed my life is not mine for sometime now so if it is my time to join Him above then it will be ok.

Also please pray for the people we will be ministering too in Mexico. That God will work on their hearts. That they will come to know Him and his love for them.

*** PS- I wanted to post this yesterday (Monday) but had computer issues. Yesterday was a better day than Sunday, today is better than yesterday. It's not always easy, doing the right thing, or letting go of that wrong thing. Even with the knowledge that it is time and right. But God doesn't give us more than we can handle, even when we made bad choices and got ourselves into this situation in the first place. Thank goodness for His grace & unconditional love. I'm SO glad that He is not human & loves & forgives better than anyone I could ever know.
This song has been a great help to me these last few days...

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Sad Day

Today my heart aches, for so many reasons.

But mostly for loss, loss of a possiblity, loss of a current thing, loss of a certain feeling.
I know deep down that it is right, that it will one day turn out ( at least for me ) to something positive.

But hurt is still hurt, pain is still pain. And a loss is still a loss. Tomorrow I will be more positive, tomorrow I will look to the bright side of things. Tomorrow I will smile more.

Today I will ache and cry and pray. Knowing that maybe one day something will change in me, I will heal, this will make me stronger and I know that something else could change no matter how unlikely that seems, after all All things are possible with God. Even the things that seem impossible.

Friday, March 12, 2010

wow...tears, thoughts, heartache.

If you have time watch the above video. I started a blog this morning on a trivial thing.

Then a friend of mine sent this to me via facebook. I was in my office while I was watching, and it was just about all I could do not to cry.

It got me thinking when they talk about the older sister who is 8 and how this is Christainity, this is love, putting others first. Putting someone before yourself, even if you can't provide what they REALLY need, which in this case was food, but doing the thing that you could do which in her case was bathing them.

And I got to thinking, do I do this? Really do this? Put others before me, even in doing the littlest thing? When it comes down to it, do I spend my money on that pair of shoes that I don't really need or do I send it to feed a child. I'm not saying here that shoes are bad, trust me, I've got an addiction so I can't really say that. But am I using my money in a way that God would be proud? Maybe sometimes yes, but I know that sometimes that's a big NO.

I hope you come back to watch this video often, as a reminder, not only of the way things are in another part of the world but also as a reminder to be thankful for what you have, no matter how little you have, and a reminder to really love. To love in the way that puts others before your self. Just as Christ did for us.

Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one's life for his friends. John 15:13

'Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.' Matthew 25:40