Sunday, May 29, 2011
Here are two quick videos as an update today! The first one shows you what my church here looks like and the second is a little verbal update.---hope you can hear me okay--people from my church were all chatting in the background!
Bless you all and have a great week in the Lord!....more to come later this week!
Friday, May 27, 2011
So I hung out at Conchita's for six hours yesterday after work. It was fun-us both lying on the mattress-me listening mostly as she told me her story.
Conchita married young and is a few years older than me, but has three children and has been married for 20 years. Three years ago she was in an automobile accident and was thrown from the car and is almost completely paralyzed except for the fact that she has very limited use of her hands...but is dependent on others for almost everything she needs.
So she told me about her journey to having a living relationship with God--which is some ways was similar to mine....and yet very unique at the same time, she talked about her daily struggles and at the same time would occasionally blurt out these words of wisdom and perspective that astounded me. We talked about today's youth of the world and the crisis' of society that extend beyond cultural boundaries...which really boil down to one thing--man needing to KNOW God.
I discovered that yes, I DO like the Mexican white corn on a cob with mayo, chili, and well a tiny few sprinkles of cheese---that there is great pleasure sitting outside talking, spraying Conchita with a water bottle to cool her fever, drinking a coke, listening to music, and greeting more neighbors that I had not met yet in the process.
We did not get to the park, but we will do so another day.
I went home thankful...and my frustrations that previously seemed so big---were tiny specks in perspective of it all.
So tonight I will go to the house group that I shared with last week---and Conchita will be there too.......Pray that God would encourage her heart---she has a long road to travel.
Thursday, May 26, 2011
This month has really been a mix of blessings and challenges--I think mot months are like that actually, but I guess the challenges part sort of jumped out at me a little stronger than normal for a variety of reasons.
BUT I am so thankful that I serve a God who knows exactly what I truly need and doesn't arrive too early nor too late in His responses to our prayers.
When I was invited to share my testimony and the devotional last week, I got acquainted with a woman known as "Conchita." Last night I went to check my e-mail and she "just happened-as some would say" to be outside.
"I have to talk to you!" she said. "Will you come over to my house for lunch tomorrow? And then maybe afterwards we can get out and go to a park and talk or something."
By this point I am thinking "Hallelujah!" She has no idea how precious that invitation is to me--or how much I needed it.
"By the way," she says, "I am getting baptized on Saturday--will you come?"
"Of course!" I said
God works in mysterious ways---and I am thankful----oh so thankful. Pray for Conchita and I--that this relationship could be a mutual encouragement and blessing as we interact this afternoon.
Tuesday, May 24, 2011
It seems that in many ways God has me at that "wait and grow stage" again like I was at last year for a variety of entorely different factors.
There can be a temptation for prospective intercultural workers or missionaries to think, "When I get to my country of service and am serving the Lord, THAT is where my life is going to start."
It is really an incorrect statement. Our joy does not depend on what we accomplish or do. Our joy is found in knowing God first and foremost above all else.
I am still trying to figure out what my resposabilities of ministry look like---and I am not immune to being tempted by this thinking. Sometimes I get tempted to think that having more responsabilities is what I need--esspecially when co-workers are invited to be involved in certain things that I would enjoy doing--but maybe it just isn´t time for me to do that yet--or maybe God has something entirely different in mind for me than what I think--which seems to be the case.
But serving God is NOT about comparing ourselves one to the other. Infact if we are comparing ourselves, we are not allowimg ourselves to be used as God intends. ....and we are not focusing on Him either--we are instead "looking at what someone else is doing." At the end of our lives we will give an account to God alone--and He is not comapring our life with someone else´s.
So although I am not sure what my ministry resposabilities totally are and am still figuring that out.....I do know that my goal is to complete what I know is before me--like developing my relationship with God, finishing my orientation requirements, showing up faithfully at the sending base three times a week, and attempting to be a blessing to the youth at my church on Saturday´s, and seeking to be a witness on my street and elsewhere, are what I must do unto God´s glory, without comparing,-----and the rest will be added unto me as well.
Monday, May 23, 2011
I've found myself asking the Lord for "patience right now" a few times lately--of course if I am asking for it right now-then obviously I am not be patient, but at least admitting I need it! I need patience to wait on His timing, His will, His purposes.
God has been reminding me lately that my priority is to be my relationship with Him and not my ministry (or occasionally the feeling of a lack of it)---and to trust Him that His plans will come to fruition at the right time.
Thank you so much for your prayers. May God continue to transform us all to be more like Him.
Saturday, May 21, 2011
I just wanted to update you and say that giving my testimony and the devotional Friday to the house group in Spanish was a blessing for all of us. I talked for an hour between the two (in Spanish PTL) and there were questions, prayer, and lots of interaction from the group! To God be the glory! Through the house group I have discovered there are a few other believers on my street which is great!
Another praise is that I am enjoying being with the youth----I just came back from church tonight from being with them and stopped at the internet cafe about a block and a half from the place I rent. I am excited that everal of the youth continue to converse with me and include me. Pray that God would allo me to develop god relationships with a few of the young ladies---that I could get to know them well.
Friday, May 20, 2011
CELEBRATE !!!!! CELEBRATE !!!!!
So I would just like to say that one year ago (roughly around this day) God found me and I gave Him my trust! I think that is definitely worth celebrating! I proase Him for having mercy on me, for bringing me to the place where what I had heard my whole life became a living and real personal relationship with Him and not just head knowledge.....and that for the most part except for rare occasions--I continue to live in that same peace and joy of knowing Him that only He can give.
Romans 8:1-4 "Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit who gives life has set you free from the law of sin and death. For what the law was powerless to do because it was weakened by the flesh, God did by sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh to be a sin offering. And so he condemned sin in the flesh, in order that the righteous requirement of the law might be fully met in us, who do not live according to the flesh but according to the Spirit. "
John 8:12 "When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
Colossians 1:9-14 "For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins. "
Hopefully of you belong to Him and have given Him your trust, you still celebrate daily the fact that You know Christ--the glorious hope of the children of God!
Thursday, May 19, 2011
Here is a quote I came across today as I am beginning to think about preparing a 20 minute presentation on God's heart for the Nations. I am hoping I will be able to share it eventually with some people at my church to encourage them further in their involvement in the Great Commission-both here in Mexico and abroad.
"Safety does not depend on our conception of the absence of danger. Safety is found in God's presence, in the center of His perfect will." T.J. Bach 1881-1963 Venezuela
I love the quote----it is something I have thought about lately.
Psalm 4:8 "In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, LORD, make me dwell in safety."
Psalm 25:7 "For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent and set me high upon a rock."
Deuteronomy 33:27a The eternal God is your refuge and underneath are the everlasting arms."
Wednesday, May 18, 2011
Tomorrow I will be sharing my testimony and a devotional at a house group of believers that meet at another believer´s house near where I live. Please pray that it would be an encouragement and a blessng to those who are present. I spent over five hours preparing te devotional yesterday and it encouraged me greatly--pray God would use His Word.
Praise that this is also a completeion of some more of my orientation requirements--although FOR SURE giving my testimony and devotionals in Spanish does NOT stop there! Pray for more open doors to share!
Praise! As far as I know I have a scheduled meeting (maybe even a second one with dinner at the individual´s house) with a person that will be a HUGE help and blessing in getting even farther along with my cultural paper. The dates are next week Tuesday and Wednesday for this.
Another small prayer request-Olga--the lady I rent from--is suppose to come back Friday! Praise the Lord! I am definitely longing to get our friendship re-established. But PRAY that in te midst of workong at the sending base, and giving my testimony to the house group----I can find time to finish cleaning her kitchen that was left in disarray not so much from my doing but due to other factors. I want her to come home to a place extra clean and such. Pray for her safe arrival home.
Tuesday, May 17, 2011
About a year ago my Pastor in my home church gave a sermon where he quoted these two quotes from a biography from Dwight L. Moody. I've been thinking about them a lot lately. They continue to challenge me.
"I do not know of anything that America needs more today than men and women on fire with the fire of Heaven. And I have yet to find a man or a woman on fire with the fire with the Spirit of God that is a failure. I believe it is utterly impossible. They are never discouraged or disheartened. They rise higher and higher and it grows better and better all the while. My dear friends, if you have not this illumination, make up your mind you are going to have it. Pray, “Oh God illuminate me with thy Holy Spirit.”
"It has come as a song in the night to find in Dwight L Moody sure proof that the loftiest achievement is merely my human best filled with the Holy Spirit."
On Thursday I am sharing my testimony and a devotional with the house group that had asked me to share last week--but the ladies did not show up. So today I am getting all of that together. Pray that I would be able to bless and encourage those that attend this group--thanks!
Sunday, May 15, 2011
May the precious Gospel of our Lord and Savior be our comfort in all things-in every situation. May We never forget that You are our God--who knows our weakness, who loves us in spite of our sin, and who is constantly working to transform us to be more like You. You came to this earth fully God and fully Human and understand the temptations we face--yet You did not sin. Show us Your ways according to Your Word and give us hearts that are eager to obey You above everything else. May we reflect that love to others even in times when we "don´t feel like it." May our minds, wills, and emotions be subject always to the leading of the Holy Spirit. Use us--May the fragrance of Your truth would be evident to all that we come in contact with. Thank You Father for beng our God---for being our Rock and for being our Truth.
Friday, May 13, 2011
Praising the Lord for the wonderful package I received from Nancy today!!! What a blessing!
And for the fact that AMARILLO ATE FROM MY HAND for the first time tonight!!!! Yeah! It was a joyous experience to know that he came willingly.......and to feel that little beak against my hand as he ate. My precious birdie is learning to trust!
PRAYING FOR a dear friend whose brother died today in a very tragic circumstance. Pray that the Lord would comfort the family as only he can. My heart is broken for them in their grief. Pray that the Lord would give me wisdom as to how to minister to them.
Thursday, May 12, 2011
Wednesday, May 11, 2011
I have been thinking as I watch Amarillo about how it takes time to trust......and as much as I long for Amarillo to trust me, I have to be patient. He usually does sing when I walk in the door....so it might be slight progress.
It is even more amazing how patient God is with us.....for some of us it takes awhile before we trust what Jesus Christ has done on the cross for us I also think of how much it must break His heart when we do not trust Him, but at the same time God is just and is not going to "overlook" our sin if we are not trusting in Christ's all sufficient sacrifice once and all for us....Yet God gives us the gift of a lifetime-----a lifetime whee He patiently waits for the day that we will trust Him alone.
Here is a beautiful flower I saw this morning!
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
Psalm 3:3-4 "But you, LORD, are a shield around me, my glory, the One who lifts my head high. I call out to the LORD, and he answers me from his holy mountai"
How Thankful I am that it is the LORd who sustains me amd lifts my head. As I have mentioned before, things have been chllenging lately for a variety of reasons thta I can not exactly post on the internet-especially the last two days. But at the same time, even today, I have seen God lifting my head and bringing my focus back to Him.....so I praise Him for that ever so evident.
What a blessing it is to know Him.
Thank you so much for your prayers---As a missionary friend of mine, John North has said, "God works when we pray!"
Sunday, May 8, 2011
HAPPY MOTHERS DAY!!
On Saturday evening I had my first opportunity to go to one of the youth meetings at my church. It was a lot of fun--they are a great group! I really appreciate the fact that there is not a single "youth leader" but rather a team of people working together to minister to the youth in the church. It will probably be a few months before I am asked to do specific things--they are "feeling me out" and all so to speak, which is understandable,----so for now I am just hanging out with them. Here is a picture of us all!
I am still not sure about being ivolved in womens ministry. That is more of where my heart is---but we will see what God does in the future!
Sunday afternoon we had our regular missions meeting for people that are interested in learning more about missions. It was good although we had fewer people.....which actually we expected since mothers day is a really big deal down here.
Thank you for your continued prayers and all that you do as a part of me being able to serve here! I would not be here without you! I was very clearly reminded of that through something that occurred this mornig. Have a blessed beginning to your week!
Friday, May 6, 2011
I've been busy lately so I haven't been able to blog as I would like--but here are some pictures to enjoy.
Orange flowers in the trees---absolutely beautiful! (The picture doesn't show how nice they really look)
A little tiny all white spider--I had never seen an all white one before-thought it was kind of neat!
I have several devotionals I want to write but I need to find a longer time to be able to do so. May the Lord bless you all with a wonderful day in Him!
Tuesday, May 3, 2011
We can learn so many things from the creation that God has made! It is amazing when you think about it how the birds wake up many times before we do, and no matter what may hav happened the day before, they are still singing!
It kind of puts a new visual on the words "Rejoice in the Lord always!"
Do I rejoice in the Lord always?
So today I got a little surprise from Amarillo! Watch the video to find out.
I have a singing happier bird! I had the day off today and was home off and on a little more than normal. I think he likes that!
Monday, May 2, 2011
James 1:2-4 "Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete--not lacking in anything."
I know I have written baout these words before, esspecially last Summer when I was going through various issues. It seems these words have been challenging me again. I have to confess that there have been times where I am tempted to get weary or not count certain situations as "all joy."But at the same time, as I remember that God is doing a work in me, much greater than I can imagine. Through everything, I am able to count it joy because he is accomplishing HIS purposes.
Another word jumps out at me from these verses---"Perseverance." Part of me chuckles softly as I think to myself, "Well, God certainly is teaching me that!" And even there have been some big challenges lately, there have been so many incredible blessings and praises as well.
Lord, help me to count it all joy because You are good ---and nothing that you allow into my life is without purpose!