World travel? Who me?! 

A good part of my life (so far) was spent day dreaming and wishing I could travel. It was spent at bars drinking with friends talking about all the places in the world we would love to see, “too bad that will never happen.” We would talk for hours about how great it would be to see Europe or Africa would be great to visit. If only we weren’t broke. We would laugh and order another round and go back to complaining about our jobs and how much we make. We would dream up new jobs that we wish we could find. Even though none of us were qualified. 

Used to say things like if I could just get a better job that paid me more money and gave me more time off I could go do what I want to do. I would travel more and so exciting things. Getting paid more to do less. The American Dream. 

Then God got a hold of my life. At the bottom of a dark time with the only option being to look up to Him, He pulled me out of the rubble I had caused for myself and dusted me off and said. “I have a better plan.” Broken and honestly no other options I made the choice to listen. 

Faith is a choice. It isn’t some magical thing that just happens to you. Amazing supernatural things happen in faith, but only AFTER you choose to believe. God said He had a better way. Despite the lack of proof presented to me at the time I wasdesperate and  said “I have nothing to loose, I might as well believe.” I even asked God to show me how to believe. I was still sceptical. I had nothing to offer anyone. I wasn’t the smartest person, I wasn’t organized, I had no drive to do anything. I was just sitting around existing in this world. 

God started to show me my identity does not come from my work, my paycheck, or what other people think of me. My identity isn’t in events from my past or who others think I should be in the future. My identity is who I am with Him (God) now. He created me to be something very specific before time even begin. Why would He do that if I was just out here to exist and live out a boring mundane life? Seems sorta silly to me. 

The more I blindly followed in faith, the more exciting things became for me and the more I realized what I have to offer. Only its not me offering anything it’s God working through me that benefits people. He has gifted me uniquely to do the things I love and am good at. He made me that way. I just don’t realize it or know how to use those gifts. When in doubt refere  to the owners manual. 

Section Jer 29.11 – I know the plans I have for you. 

Section Phil 4:6- be anxious for nothing 

Section John 8:32 the truth will set you free

The truth of who I am and what my life is for changed every part of my life for the better forever. 
Now I have conversations about which country I’m going to next and it’s an actually even happening. People now invite me to things at home and say “it would be great if you can come, if your in the country.” It is sort of unbelievable. I have been blessed with opportunities this year that at one time in life seemed like thugs I could only dream of doing in some far off parallel universe where everything was awesome. Well, that universe has a name and it’s Faith! I feel as though ever sense I out my faith in Christ I have been sent to parsley universe far better then the one I originated in. So world travel? Yes please! Maybe not forever and maybe not ever again after this but this season is one of coming and going living and exploring! Can’t wait to see how God grows me during this time away. Excited for what the future hold after! 

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Perseverance 

I resently found myself saying “I feel like I’m doing all the things someone who perseveres would do, only I haven’t accomplished my goal and persevered yet!” 

Then I looked up the definition of perseverance. Funny thing 

 

If you read this, persevering is nothing more then a fancy word for KEEP ON SWIMMING!  It says continued effort despite difficulties or FAILURE. 
Not that I have failed. We only fail when we decided to stop swimming. When we no longer continue to try, when we cease making an effort. The enemy (the devil and my flesh that loves to be lazy) would have me believe that because something is hard and takes time and patience that I am doing something wrong or I would have meet my goal already. The truth is, some things take a lot of planning and they take time to develops. The time is not waisted and to spent in vain. It is necessary and wise to plan completely. 

My past attitude was one of instant gratification and all or nothing. God is growing me and showing me persistence, patience and balance. All those things are completely out of my comfort zone. I want it now and at a low cost. God wants these same things from me but in the future and at its highest quality. God help me wait on you so I can have your best for me and not my half measure, rushed together, poorly planned lame idea of a future. Thankful you know better then me. 


Airport cafe- Next part of the journey

I am so sad to leave the beautiful country I have called home for over a month on this journey. The friends I have made are sure to be life long friends. Our connection to eachother is amazing. We can hardly understand eachother at times, yet we have enjoyed every moment we were together.

I’m sitting here alone drinking my cafe Americana in the Chinngis Khann international airport. The rest of my team is sitting and chatting for what will be one of the last times we see eachother. I am sitting and thinking of what this trip has changed in me. I honestly don’t know yet. When I came I had a list of expectations. Some crazy and some realistic. Some have been met, some have not and many of my experiences have exceeded my expectations a thousand times over.

I have learned I don’t know anything about the language I have spoken my whole life. Yet, I am able to teach it. I have learned that pride is the deepest darkest of all the sins and faults. It is a daunting foe and rises when it is least expected. Most the time it’s so subtil I can only see it when God reveals it to me in our secret conversations held deep in my mind. Despite my faults God can and will use me in any manner He chooses. I’m just blessed to sit back and watch my Father weave the majestic tapastry He graciously allows me to be a thread in.

The things I am discovering I am capable of with Him running the show continually take my breath away. I never in a thousand years would have thought I would have spent my summer as I just have. People say trips like this change you forever. And I know that I have been changed. I can’t put my finger on the exact points of transformation. But, I know I have been altered by God, I have been influenced by an amazing culture and I have been adopted by some amazing people.

It’s my birthday today. And even though my family is far away and it will still be a few days before I see them. I have a new family here who has blessed me and made me feel loved and cared for. My room mates blessed me with a bed full of balloons and streamers! That was a cute thing to wake up too. And my students made picture collages and posted birthday wishes on Facebook for me. I sit in the airport in tears. Sad for one part of my life to end but happy to return home. I feel as though I am a part of two different worlds that can’t exist at the same time.

I know this is not the “end” of one thing and the beginning of another, it is simply a cup of coffee in an airport waiting for the next leg of the journey…

 

Another year

As the year draws to a close, I sit here and think of how incredible 2014 has been for me. The journey God has shown me and the Paths I have walked down just in the last year.
I feel God closer then ever and my faith has taken on new strength. There are beliefs and ideas that once made sense to my mind but now ring true in my heart.
There is a certain knowing you are right with God that I can’t explain. There is no magic formula anyone can teach you to get there either.
God has used people and situations, joy and disappointment to get me where I am right now. With my relationship with God and with others.
I can feel walls from a hurtful past fall and crumble. I can see change in the way I think and feel. Sometimes it feels weird being willing to love and hug and be softer then I used to be. I was so blocked off from love from the fear of being hurt and crushed.
God allowed me to start to trust and be vulnerable with men especially and believers who follow Him. I have also been hurt and disappointed and felt abandon shoved to the side. Even by some of those very people I learned to trust.
But, God has shown me that we are ALL sinners, our trust and life is in His hands ONLY and we can’t expect others to help, or fill that space. Only God can love us perfectly, only God can handle the heavy burden of picking us up every time we fall.
It’s when we put these expectations on humans that we become hurt and disappointed.
Yes, we are to bare each others burdens. But, God calls us to be here for each other as iron sharpens iron and be strong for each other. This is love and truth and pointing out things we see even when it hurts. This is helping people see who God is making them and lifting them up and rejoicing with them.
I am so thank full that I am finally learning how to love! It has only taken my entire life and still feel like I have no clue what I’m doing.
Sometimes I think it’s better that way. Leaves more room for Him to work and less room for me to get in there and try and help with the plans.
– I pray Father for myself and those reading this this that you will give us your plan in your time. Give us willingness to follow you and a desire to sit and hear you. Help us to be still, to know you are Lord and to listen to your instructions for our lives. Help us to have the boldness to live for you fully and with out care or worry of what the world thinks. Help us to have crazy love for all we meet and see them as you see them. Help us to be more you and less us.
Thank you for the plan you have for me and for my place in your kingdom. Be it a warrior, a jester, a generals wife or foot solder. I pray father you help me to heed the training you give and I accept my place as you have assigned.
I pray this in Jesus Name-amen

What are you waiting for?

Here we are, Day 324 and I can tell by the stats on this blog that about 8 people have ever seen it. Why not more you ask? Well, fear yet again. What are you afraid of now?!  Well, lets get it all out there.

I am afraid of looking foolish for the things I think and write.
Im afraid to share my deep thoughts with others and really let people know whats inside this head,
Im afraid of my horrible spelling and gramatical errors poisoning the minds of people who can correct all my errors and laugh at how elemetery my writing is.
I know it’s here for people to see but I hardly share that fact with anyone.
I fear that when I feel God speaking to me it will not match up with what the majority thinks even pastors and church people and I will be seen as uneducated because I don’t know what I’m talking about according to them.
I am sure there are more fears in there. But, those are the major reasons I keep this little blog here on lock down.

I am feeling I should share it anyway and put it out there to more people.  I think it is going to play a majpr role in the next steps on this path that God and I are traveling together. Sometimes my thoughts are all over the place and they need a dumping ground. Sometimes God is connecting so many dots I just sit back in Awe and wonder how to write it all out to give Him glory for what He shows me.

Part of me feels that writing about all the amazing things that are coming together is bragging and I shouldnt do that. But, it is bragging unto the Lord. I am weak, more timid then anyone can imagine. I am insecure and feel completely ill equipt to deal with life. I feel as though no matter how hard I try to pray and listen I am always falling short of Gods will and making wrong choices. I feel my entire life has been bad choice, bad choice, bad choice, deal with consiquence, repeat.

I know most of this is a lie from the enemy. I know I have skills that make me equipt to deal with this life, to make a good living even. I know with determination I can “get it together” have the American dream and live happily every after. According to the worlds standard and playing by their rules, and living up to thier expectations.
Some days it seems it would be the preferble way to go about life. Go back to work get my paid vacation back, 401 (K) plan, a steady pay check that actually covers my expenses. I would love these things…. Somedays

For some reason, and I can’t explain it any better then you can  guess, this jsut isn’t me. I fit into that world just fine, but it doesnt feel right. My soul and spirit ache for what God wants from this life He gave me. I see posestions as His and money as a way to accomplish what He wants. Do I want things? Yes, I do. But, the longer I walk with the Lord the less fancy those things get.
When I first got saved and started tithing, God blessed me with the ability to buy a car for the first time ever. I got a red sporty car and took great care of it. I bragged that God had blessed me for my obediance and was arrogent with my faith and became pridefull. (Not saying we cant have nice things and love the Lord, Im just telling my story and no judgement is intended on those who like the finer things in life.) I in turn fell off the pedistle I was perched on and landed in a bar drinking my life away and the “blessing” from God was repossesed.

What is my point? My point is that the things that used to bring me joy no longer do. Now, I drive a car I own that was a true gift and blessing from God, paid in full, that I am completely unworthy of. But, non the less there it is for me day in and day out. I don’t think it is a reward really I have done nothing worthy of a reward. I feel it Is a gift God has given me because it is a tool I need, to do what He wants me to. He is letting me borrow it while I’m here so I can get to where ever he choses to take me.

And that may very well soon be Alaska! I am getting excited for the possibility of finally getting there. I have felt a pull to go for over a year now. I always get the urge to GO… Go where? Anywhere and every where. Ecuador, Peru, Jamaica, Iceland… everywhere.

I know at this point God wants me to GO. Not sure what I do when I get there or where I go but the GO part is very clear.
First, Alaska and then Peru then europe? Maybe travel the United States, Alaska, Peru, then Iceland? Maybe none of the above, or all in different order. The other thing that is clear is I will share His good news with those I meet. I feel Him training me.

Record makes that scratching noice and then a dead silance…….. what? You… feel God training you?

Yes, when I sit quietly with Him He gives me questions to ask strangers and then gives me courage to ask friends and family. He nudges me out of my comfort zone to reach out to the last person I want to talk to. Not because they arent a good person just because there is tension and I hate how it feels. I feel Him making me wonder things like what people are thinking and how they live when they go home. Are they at peace in this life? Do they know Him?
Thats the point, thats the meat of it. Do they know Him. He wants me to find out and wants me to find out why or why not they believe.

All of THEM, any one, everyone from everywhere. Wondering question asking lady, could that really be a calling. Seems simple minded, seems sort of elementry. Seems rediculous to think that wondering around asking poepl questions is missoinary work.

Love them He says, and I say sometimes its hard. I really don’t even like poeple! At least I didn’t used to. Now you want me to embrace them, get to know them, love them, accept them, heal them with your touch and give them hope with your Word? Wow, God is big and all powerful!

If only the deepest depths of my soul from even just four years ago was poured out in a blog the transformation of my heart would silence most of Gods critics.

So, If God has changed me so much and Is so powerful, why all this fear? Well, we still live in this world (for now) and things still hurt and egos (even ones being taimed by the creator) get hurt and damaged and worry. Its what we do, He knows that. Tiny steps in the process makes leaps of progress once linked together. Hind site is a beautiful thing sometimes! You get to have the Ah ha moment and see your struggle was for a purpose.

So, I wait to share this blog with a ton of people because I don’t know If my character is develpoed enough to stand the trials that may come. Comments that could be made. I do claim that God speaks to me and I follow His voice in all I do (to the best of my ability) I don’t know how common a claim that is nowadays.
In my circle of friends it is exceptable and even covited. But, what if this expands beyond that comfort zone, what If……

The most horrible words in the english language when paired…. What if?

So, I pray to stop waiting and pray to get the courage to ignore the what if, to throw caution to the wind. To put it out there and act as if no one reads it. Maybe no one will read it. Who would know if you don’t just get it out there.

Ok, pact with myself and God. We pray and next blog entry gets mass posted and put in the newsletter. This may not seem like a big deal to the two of you reading this but, this is a huge step.

If you are still reading thank you!
I am going to begin putting prayer request at the ends of blogs and in the newsletter. If you could please join me in prayer for these things requests:

I pray for courage to put myself out there so others can watch God work
I pray for funding to start coming together for coffee shop start up money and travel
I pray that God continues to give me the faith needed to carry out whatever He may ask of me
I pray for partners in ministry to come together with me and with Se7en Missions to accomplish Gods mission for us.
I pray against the enemy that tries to stop all the above from happening.