Friday, February 15, 2013

Prayer is always the best place to leave things...

Almighty God

There is so much sadness and hurt in the world these days,
my heart breaks so I can only imagine how painful it is for you to watch your creation stumble.

Lord we need you, we need your soveriegn hands to bring peace to the entire region.

Father we pray that your love and righteousness would pour out on
Tunisia, Libya, Egypt, Algeria...and to the ends of the earth...

I ask that you would protect your children in this time of unsettled violence and anger.

Lord put your gaurdian angels beside every little girl and give every boy your strength and wisdom.

We want to see you reign in these nations and we want to see people find the truth.....

Help us know how to share you in this time of difficulty and how to hold on strong to you ourselves.

Father bring each one the encouragment they need to continue serving you in obediance and confidence.

Thank you for your grace, love, and peace in our souls knowing that no matter what is going on in our lives, you are Lord of all.

Thank you for yourself, we love you with all you have made us to be,



Monday, February 4, 2013

Why Did God Create Mold?

So over the last month, coming back from each of my trips it has become a pattern of finding my shoes covered in mold! Yes covered! Not on the ground or the walls but just my few, very loved nice shoes.....The first time I wiped them off I thought well this is a good experience to have in life not that big of a deal.....The second time I thought ok God you are just teaching me patience because I always hear people talk about how difficult mold is to get rid of so you want me to appreciate how easy you are going on me.....But then the third time I thought ok this is a lesson of learning simply how to move your shoes to another location until you figure out where the wetness is sneeky into my closet. So now as I look around my room and see random pairs of shoes sitting about I think, well this is a new way to inspire creative writing topics.

All that to say God did create mold and just like most hard things to understand in life, it is to teach us about what really matters. Shoes are shoes and possessions in this life don't really matter, but in the very least I can come away from this saying it is good to take care of what the Lord does provide for you in life. Even in abundance at times, but as long as we always recognize that it is his provision and gift so that when it's gone, we aren't blaming him for not giving us something that we never deserved in the first place.

I have recently been trying to go about my day and life examining things that I have and evaluating if they matter more to me then they should? It is a good exercise as long as you don't take it too far. I am sure there are things for all of us that we could live without. For some of us even part with and we wouldn't miss them at all but because we are so used to having things we don't stop to think about who it might help, including ourselves, if we sought to live with less and really think about what we are purchasing before we spend money on meaningless perishable items made by consumer driven culture.

I hope this helps open your thoughts in a new and good way today, be blessed as always,

Sunday, December 30, 2012

On the Ground!

It is getting close to three weeks since I landed in Tunis, Tunisia. I am so excited to be officially moved into my new apartment with my friend Sam. She and I have both been living in limbo these past six months and so having our own rooms and space in general is very comforting.

Hopefully you all had a great Christmas celebration with family and friends gathered together. I was able to enjoy some holiday time with my IDEAS team here and also attended a wonderful Christmas Eve service at the International French Church. It was refreshing to be back in the lively worship environment of the beautiful black African style of praising our Lord.

Now that things are settled here I plan to be more frequent with updates on what all is going on. I plan to be traveling some soon so that will make for interesting tid-bits to share with you all as I adjust back to a culture here that is truly unique and precious in its own way but definitely provides a good opportunity for some laughs.

Lasltly for this post, but most certainly of great importance is my news about getting engaged! I unexpectedly met someone in the last couple months of being in America and God clearly had expedicious plans for our coming together. Our care for each other grew quickly and deeply in the final few weeks I had in California and as a realization of how far apart we would be soon, Isaac chose to propose within 24hours before I boarded my plane. Yes ladies, he is a hopeless romantic and in my opinion one of the best! It was a crazy time but one of the most certain decisions of my life. God has blessed us in finding each other, but we do have a hard road ahead so please keep us in your prayers.

I hope Isaac's and my obedience to the Lord's leading is inspirational for you today,

Saturday, November 24, 2012

We Wage War....Why?

In my conversations recently the topic of war seems to have come up a lot whether we are referring to a historical war, the military, or the battle that as Christ followers we were born into and responsible to start fighting daily as our maturity grows.

I know most of you are thinking, "It's Thanksgiving weekend why am I talking about war", but people don't realize how much we have to be thankful for because of those that wage war in each of these categories. We are not excluded from this responsibility either because in the very least, we are called to fight the battle of integrity everyday so that the Lord's light shines brighter and makes our battle that much easier. We are to be the army that fights each day for truth, sovereignty in God, and the peace of eternal grace.

For those of you also fighting in the armed forces I want to appreciate your sacrifice in how the Lord has brought you to a commitment of defending your earthly country as well. I can only imagine the conviction it takes to make that choice, but I pray the Lord convicts me with the same sense of duty, honor, and sacrifice as I seek to lay down my desires and comforts to battle the images, abuses, emotions, and sins of this world in seeking to redeem the view and voice of women around the world. God made woman beautiful and purposeful for Him, and through certain people He brings around the hand you need to step out of the ditch people have come to know as home.

If you are that hand for someone else and have been denying the push He has put on your life to step up, today re-evaluate who you are deciding to leave in the ditch because of your choice. If you are the one living in that ditch, start looking for the hand because in choosing to stay in your ugly existence you are telling God his creation is not worth refining and using for His glory.

So I think it is fair to say we all have a war to be in and a battle to fight, we should get working!

With all the sincerity of my soul,

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Soldiers of the Right Fight

I know the title of this entry seems a bit harsh and maybe that pushes some of you away but this was the topic of my young adults group discussion last night. Our study has been on the nooma clips that combine, scripture, practical discussion questions and stimulating visuals of real life daily struggles.

Last night the speaker used the theme of the anger we can often get when being cut off in traffic, our grocery bag breaking, or for some of us it just takes someone looking at us the wrong way to set us off. He then compared that reaction to the kind of righteous anger Jesus had with his children and the religious elites, when cleaning out the temple. The difference is when Jesus acted on his anger it immediately resulted in restoration and love, which unfortunately is not commonly the result we get as humans in the way we act out our anger.

The final question posed to each of us was, do we let our anger drive us or do we drive our anger? How often do we ask ourselves, why am I angry, and actually think through what the Lord might want us to do about those feelings. We are created as humans who get angry about things, just like Jesus did, but most of us today view our anger as a bad thing that needs to be removed from our life, simply because we don't take the time to understand its purpose.

In light of that realization I would ask everyone, how many of us recognize what makes us angry as a directional tool the Lord might be using? Someone once told me, sin breaks the heart of God and because we are made in His image, sin should break our hearts as well.

So...are we serving in jobs or ministries where our motivation stems purely from righteous anger to see change occur that will bring about justice for whomever involved? If we are not, then we might want to rethink how we spend your time.

Young Adult Group at our Halloween Party!!!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Field Trips & Baseball

This entry's title would seem strange and completely disconnected from each other; and you would be right outside of the fact that my life has been severely influenced by these two things in this past week.

My good friend is a kindergarten teacher at a private school. She's had three field trips these past two weeks that I was enticed to help out with. I mean come on who wouldn't want to go to the fire station or the pumpkin patch with sixteen crazy little kids! It was a workout for sure but also a good reminder of how to enjoy the variety of life and how to view things through the eyes of a child at times. Not to mention my immeasurable respect and awe of my friend who deals with these little ones each day, but even more then that she loves and invests in them in ways most teachers never fully grasp. So that is my nugget of wisdom and encouragement for the day, with an added picture and now we can move on to the less edifying highlight of my week!

I have to admit this second topic has been a really fun and intense addition to my life since being back in central California: BASEBALL!!! First, watching the Oakland Athletics almost make it to the playoffs was like a dream after an incredibly surprising pre-season. Then, we get to pain-staking anticipate the Giants make history getting into the playoffs, then only to pull that stunt once again as they slide right into the World Series last night for the second year in a row, after drawing it out to the seventh game with the St. Louis Cardinals! I know professional sports isn't everything in life but I am sure glad God made some humans capable of playing these games so that the rest of us can comfortably watch from a distance, on the edge of our seats of course, ha ha.

Hope you enjoyed my simple excitements for the week and can now look back at your own and see a few things God graced you with as well.

Friday, October 12, 2012

Being Present

Some times when God has put a call on our life to go some where, there is still a preparation period before we leave. This time isn't always about studying and maturing in our skills, though those things are important, it is more so about being present in a certain place at a certain time for the Lord's intended purpose.

I have been eager for the time when I can return to Tunisia, but God has taken this extra time in the United States to remind me of the importance of the body all over the world and what my active role is in that body regardless of how long I will stay in one given place. God can use each of us in unmeasurable ways for just one moment or one day, as long as we obediantly follow His orchestrated plan.

Throughout my time in America while support raising I asked the Lord one request, "If you are going to keep me here longer then I would like, please at least show me why". He has been answering my prayer ever since I got here but I only realized it in these past two weeks. God can do anything on his own but he chooses to use us to love each other, support each other, and speak into each others lives.

I was blessed in Los Angeles to be there for a close friend during a time that she really needed someone to understand her expereince and speak acceptance and love into her life. Also, once I got back to San Jose last week, my Grandfather had unexpected heart surgery. I was honored to be the family member that held my Grandmothers hand and pray with them both before he went into the operating room.

God gives us purpose in different, most of the time, unexpected ways. All I know is that I am so grateful for the time He has given me to be with and care for my friends and family, because He knows there will be many times in my life to come that I will not be able to stand by my loved ones in person when they go through scary, painful, and surprising situations.

Thank the Lord today for the people he has provided to surround you in hard times,