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There Is No Fear In Love ~1 John 4:18 July 31, 2007

Posted by G in from the heart.
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“You intended to harm me, but God intended it for good to accomplish what is now being done, the saving of many lives.”  ~Genesis 50:20

“bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.”  ~Luke 6:28

So, as I said I just got back from TLC and every year God speaks to me and kicks my butt about something.  I mentioned my lack of trust a couple posts back.  For so long I have been holding onto this without realizing exactly what was up.  It became clearer for me in Arandis this time around… I felt trapped there, not able to venture out on my own.  I was nervous to walk by myself even in broad daylight…  Late spring we were informed that the daughter of one of our ministry partners had been assaulted in a town that I wasn’t even going to visit.  I didn’t realize the extent of my caution (paranoia) until this past week…

During the final session Dwight Peterson spoke on forgiveness… he spoke about how there was someone in their lives that really had hurt he and his wife Bonnie.  Years later he found out that the man was potentially going to work at the same youth camp and he told the directors that they shouldn’t hire him and when Bonnie asked what he would do if the man showed up he said that he would kill him.  He realized what the pain of unforgiveness had caused and he and Bonnie started to pray for this man.  They never saw him again and the wounds have healed.

I’ve realized that although I think I have forgiven those that have wounded me… I have not made the effort to pray for them and if I do not pray for them, have I truly forgiven them??  I have come to the conclusion that I will not be able to truly trust men until I fully lay the past at Jesus’ feet.  And if I continue trying to protect myself… who am I serving???

“To love means to open ourselves to suffering.  Shall we shut our doors to love, then, and be ‘safe'” ~Elisabeth Elliot

“So that your trust may be in the LORD, I have taught you today, even you.”  ~Proverbs 22:19

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Blessed Be The Name of The Lord July 30, 2007

Posted by G in random stuff.
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Last Monday a few of us were traveling down to Pennsylvania for the Teen Leadership Conference (TLC).  We were in New York and as we came around a corner the traffic was stopped.  Mike had to make a bit of an abrupt stop, but nothing too serious.  We were in the passing lane and I just noticed the license plate in front of us said “IRIEVIBE”… irie is a Jamaican word for cool…  Suddenly I heard this rumbling and as I looked to the left an 18-wheeler was coming at a high rate of speed down the median (which was not a lot of room since there was a hill and trees going up the side).  As the truck was next to us all of the lumber spills off onto the left side of the trailer and the truck is still going… next thing we know we can see the trailer about three car lengths ahead, but the cab has disappeared down an embankment.  I was a bit freaked out, but more on the PRAISE GOD side of freaked out!!  And suffering from a bit of disbelief… well, the driver was up and walking within 10 minutes (I was not going to rest until I knew if he was alright since like I said, the cab just disappeared).  It was such a strange moment realizing what an amazing thing just happened and the fact that the driver noticed in time to move the truck onto the side of the road…  it could’ve been quite a horrific accident… but all in all… the best part was when we finally saw the cab…

Yea, no shit!!!

Yea, no shit!!! as quoted from one of our fellow on lookers...

Where Does My Hope Come From? July 18, 2007

Posted by G in from the heart, mindless ramblings.
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This past experience in Namibia was ofcourse another kick in the butt.  I need those quite often.  I went into this trip with few expectations, eager to see what God had planned.  I was a bit apprehensive about going to Arandis, but I was ready to discover what so many people have come to love about the small mining town.  I was really scared of the possibility of going into the highschool.  We did this in 2002 and I really hated it… I have never been a big fan of getting up in front of people let alone sharing my story.

I received a text message from Dieter while we were in Johannesburg that stated that he was praying that God would reveal to me how much He loves me.  I had a bit of an eye roll moment because lately I have really felt loved in life and had figured that my heart was catching up to my head… the fact that I know in my head that God loves me and has the best intentions for me and I’ve begun to truly feel it in my heart.  The first few days were pretty laidback.  We stayed at Dieter’s and I had a moment where God really reminded me that my first option should always be to pray (I will put the blog link here to avoid typing it all again).  It was really a cool moment & at the time the only ones that knew were Kevin & I… & Mike a bit…

On Saturday we traveled to Arandis… the moment of arrival things just seemed chaotic.  Someone had gotten sick in Darin’s combie, we were figuring out how to fit 20 people into a 3 bedroom house, there was some whining & complaining going on… so I decided that I was just going to go into the kitchen & start to put away groceries and let everyone one else figure out where they were going and I would just take what’s left (Jackie had my back on that one).  Dinner was cooked and I was feeling overwhelmed… more than ever.  I went outside to sit on the back step and I was feeling quite inadequate and really unloved.  I was also feeling like I had no idea why I was in Arandis and I was just praying that God would bring clarity to why I was to in Arandis, what He wants me to do over the next year, and why I was feeling so unloved and like I can never measure up… you know… the simple things… 🙂  And to top it all off I was feeling really trapped, girls are not to go out by themselves in Arandis.  I’ve always been pretty self-sufficient and this was a foriegn concept for me… and still is.  So, I spent the rest of the evening wallowing in my brain, which is NEVER a good thing.  When I begin to feel that I can’t measure up and I feel unloved I have this defense mechanism… it’s called being a bitch (I think that’s a technical term)… if I keep people out, I can’t get hurt and those that have hurt me in the first place, well… they need to come to me to solve the issue… because then I may feel that they care.

The next morning it was time for church… I was still wallowing in my brain… and praying for clarity.  That morning Pastor Tresford preached on Ephesians 2 and I immediately thought that this was it… he was going to mention Ephesians 3:14-21, which has become sort of a fleece in my life since 2004.  Immediately I sensed God was telling me that he was not going to mention the verse, that I already know what He wants me to do, why do I continue to ask for clarity about it…???  Just keep moving forward… but of course I begged and of course… it didn’t happen.  What Tresford did preach was a message of where do we find our worth? in other people or in God… and I clearly have been looking for my worth from those around me.  Always trying to please people and anticipate their needs… and there are those people that I can never please and if I do… well, that’s what I am supposed to do, but if I don’t… well, they will be sure to let me know.

After the service we went back to the house to change, eat lunch & have a meeting before we were to head off to Swakopmund.  During the meeting we were told the different options of things to do for the week.  Brenda went through talking about the preschool and the primary school.  Then Bonafice got up and started talking about going into the highschool to talk about dating & sex.  Immediately I knew that this is what God had me here to do, now remember I stated that going into the highschool was the thing I feared the most (I know… that was a long time ago… maybe 400 words :-)).  But my fear dissapated & I knew that is why I was in Arandis.  My heart really breaks for kids today in regards to this subject.  For over a year now I have been reading up on teen culture in regards to living in a sex-saturated world & my friend Jodi & I had a girls group that talked on the subject & I plan to have more.  I even thought about bringing some of the books to Namibia, but decided that I had no room in my bag and that if for some reason I needed the information, I would remember it… As soon as I mentioned that this is what I wanted to do a remark was made that didn’t hurt my feelings (though some might’ve thought it did), but it felt like the person was trying to take away what I knew God had me there to do.  I immediately thought of that morning’s message and how people may cut me down, but I need to find my worth in God.  I think the part that hurt so much is that they didn’t see it… and I still don’t think they do or care enough to.

ANYWAY… from there we went to the coast.  I was feeling pretty crappy still, but psyched about the week.  I was still feeling pretty trapped, like I was never going to have a moment to myself (which was true).  When we got to the coast I suggested that I would go to the store to pick up some supplies that we needed… ah-ha!  A moment alone!!!  nope… Darin asked if anyone wanted to go to the store with me so I had a car load.  We went from there to the dunes and I was suddenly realizing that this may be the only time to myself.  I found a place half way up and sat to watch the sunset.  I was thankful that God made it clear what I was to do for the week.  I was still feeling unloved and inadequate, but not worrying so much about not being able to please people.  I was enjoying the view and thinking about what would lay ahead.  Finally the magnificent sun set… it pretty much disappeared in mid air due to the haze off the ocean. 

God's LoveOn the way down I prayed that God would let me find a cool rock… I like rocks & pick up cool ones often… I bent over & in that moment God showed me how much He loves me… 

“And on the way down I saw You and You saved me from myself. And I won’t forget the way You loved me. On the way down almost fell right through but I held onto You. I’ve been wondering why It’s only me. Have You always been inside waiting to breathe? It’s alright, sunlight on my face. I wake up and yeah, I’m alive!”
~Ryan Cabrera

phew… more on the rest of the week soon…

Marwidge, it’s what bwings us togeda… July 17, 2007

Posted by G in mindless ramblings.
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Very soon I will have a post up about my trip…

I’ve realized that I am quite content with who God has created me to be and the life that He has laid before me.  I often think about the freedom I have and what a blessing that is.  The path that he has laid before me and how He so faithfully reveals each step as I need to know it.  I have come to realize over the past few months that my latest desire to shed pounds is not to impress others, but to be in obedience to God.  I have never been able to say that before.  I think this new found desire will help me in the times when I am receiving unwanted attention… keeping me focused to perservere.  I’ve always had a fear when it comes to marriage… I always say it’s what I want, but it truly scares me… hence the unwanted pounds…  One thing I realized on this trip is that I just desire a friend that I can trust that cares enough to know when I am hurting and then cares enough to dive into the murkey waters.  Until I can trust… who knows if I will ever be ready for marriage. 

Grace… July 7, 2007

Posted by G in from the heart.
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me & the girls...I was in the room when Mike was speaking with someone and he said “The question you have to ask is do you like the person that you are in Namibia or are you in love with the country of Namibia.”  Well, I can easily answer that… it has nothing to do with liking the person that I am in Namibia.  I tend to feel quite inadequate and that I can not please anyone.  I tend to become more edgy and aggravated.  I tend to feel quite isolated at times, which occurs because of the landslide from all the other feelings.  Yea… I tend to think that a lot of it I bring on myself… yet feel unable to escape. 

 

 

 

What I do know is that I love Namibia. I have fallen in love with the people, the countryside and all of God’s creation. This is where I feel God the most. He speaks clearer to me here than I could ever imagine back in the states. I become more and more amazed by His grace as I listen to stories of heartbreak and brokenness as He breaks me. He lets me know when I am doing exactly what He brought me here to do. I see it in the eyes of the teenagers that I speak with. I see it in the joy and pain of the principal’s face as she speaks of the work she is doing at the school and the reality of being unable to change some of the biggest issues that she faces… and in her desire to try.

 

“For this reason, ever since I heard about your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, I have not stopped giving thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers. I keep asking that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the glorious Father, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, so that you may know him better. I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe. That power is like the working of his mighty strength, which he exerted in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms.” ~Ephesians 1:15-20