Thursday, July 22, 2010

He is Jehovah-Jireh

Jehovah-Jireh. This name of God means "the Lord will provide." And boy, have I been blessed to see Him do so within these last few weeks. These weeks have been trying, frustrating, and ultimately, rewarding. Because every time I start to think that I can control my life, He reminds me that He is in control. And every time I begin to believe the lies of the enemy that tell me I am not good enough, completely unprepared, and a fool, He reminds me that He "chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong." (1 Corinthians 1:27) He reminds me that He alone is faithful. He is good. His promises ring true. And amidst my unbelief and frustration and need to be in control, He breaks through and shows me that His love never fails. He will provide for His children, and I am not alone. 

If you know me at all, you know that I love music. I almost constantly have music on in the background when I am working on something or cooking or reading. I just love how the Lord constantly uses music to draw me to Himself and reveal His wonderful promises through His truth. 

Here are my top five songs right now:

1. "I Will Waste My Life" by Misty Edwards
2. "Like Incense/Sometimes by Step" by Hillsong
3. "All My Devotion" by Kristene Mueller
4. "C.S. Lewis Song" by Brooke Fraser
5. "You Alone Can Rescue" by Matt Redman

On another note, this past weekend I was able to reunite with my roommate/long lost soulmate/dear sister, Kai, who has been faithfully serving the Lord for the past 7 months in Southeast Asia. (She is pretty legit.) It was simply blissful. We spent time together with our friend Lyndsey, and I cherished every moment.

Lyndsey, Kai and I after church on Sunday. Aren't they beautiful?

Lyndsey and Kai coloring at the "craft shack" in Stone Mountain. Needless to say, we were the oldest "kids" there...

Life is good. God is good. And He is worthy of all my praise.
Please continue to pray, friends. I am at almost 30% of my monthly needs, and I know that the Lord has big plans for bringing in the rest!

If you want to be a part of what the Lord is doing in Mexico by partnering with me, you can visit the NTM website or email me with any questions you have.

Love, grace, and peace to you all.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

fear not

So do not fear, for I am with you;
       do not be dismayed, for I am your God.
       I will strengthen you and help you;
       I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.
-Isaiah 41:10

So this past week, I had to say goodbye to Athens. Beloved Athens, which has held my heart for the past four years. I am going to miss the shaded paths of North Campus, the beautiful flowers in the Founders' Garden, the "country" road to Watkinsville First Baptist, Two Story Coffeehouse, Jittery Joe's, and the East Campus "funk." (Okay maybe not so much the East Campus funk.) 

The Lord truly blessed me with some amazing friendships that I am really going to miss. As I was driving through the countryside in Watkinsville, I was thinking about how it is a blessing that I am even able to say goodbye (or "see you later" as I like to call it) to my friends and family. In Luke 9, Jesus talks about how anyone who continually looks back is not fit for His kingdom. Ouch. It seems so contrary to how we function in this day and age, but Jesus is serious about His followers. He wants people who are consumed by Him and on fire for the furthering of His kingdom.

On Sunday morning, I was sitting in church listening to the sermon, and our amazing guest speaker asked a question. He said, "How did you come to Jesus Christ?" And I thought "prayer." And then I wanted to slap myself in the face. Um, NO! "For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— not by works, so that no one can boast. For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do." Everything was His doing. He kindly and graciously offers His presence and abundant life through the blood shed on the cross. Hallelujah for the blood of the Lamb that was slain!

You might be thinking, "so what does that have to do with anything?" Well, it actually has a lot to do with everything.  Every time I get freaked out or frustrated or impatient because I don't have 100% monthly support or I feel alone or crazy, I can remember that "God is the one who began this good work in you, and I am certain that he won't stop before it is complete on the day that Christ Jesus returns" (Philippians 1:6). I can rest in knowing that "If God is for us, who can be against us?" (Romans 8:31). So even though I don't know all the details right now, I can rest in knowing that He does. Nothing ever takes Him by surprise. He is in control. And I can claim His promises and know that He is for me. It is not. about. me.

This song has been played at almost every church service I have attended in the last month, so I'm thinking the Lord just might be trying to tell me something...
Enjoy: You Alone Can Rescue by Matt Redman

And I forgot to mention that I got to spend the weekend with one of my very favorite families, the Neeses, for the wedding celebration of Hannah Hodges and Nick Hussain! It was a wonderful ceremony and she was a gorgeous bride.

Mr. and Mrs. Nick Hussain

Here are some pictures from my tour de Athens/Oconee County: 

 Lovely 7th (now 8th) grade ladies!!!

Precious children of Connect Ministries founders Gabe and KT.
My crosstrainer and her beautiful sisters.
Lovely children which I have been privileged to babysit for this past year.

Friday, July 9, 2010

Lord of Lords-Hillsong

This is the desire of my heart:

Beholding your beauty is all I long for
To worship You Jesus with my soul's desire
For this very heart you've shaped for your pleasure
The purpose to lift your name high

Hear and surrender in pure adoration
I enter your courts with an offering of praise
I am Your servant come to bring you glory
As is fit for the work of your hands

Now unto the lamb who sits on the throne
Be glory and honor and praise
All of creation resounds with the song
Worship and praise him the Lord of Lords

The spirit now living and dwelling within me
Keep my eyes fixed ever upon Jesus' face
Let not the things of this world ever sway me
I'll run 'till I finish the race

Singing unto the lamb who sits on the throne
Be glory and honor and praise
All of creation resounds with the song
Worship and praise the Lord
Now unto the lamb who sits on the throne
Be glory and honor and praise
All of eternity echoes the song
Worship and praise him the Lord of Lords

Holy Lord
You are Holy
Jesus Christ is the Lord

Now unto the lamb who sits on the throne
Be glory and honor and praise
Call all the saints to join in the song
Worship and praise him the Lord of Lords

Lord of Lords
Lord of Lords
Lord of Lords

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

He is faithful

From June 21-30, I had the privilege of spending time in Sanford, FL for New Tribes Mission pre-field orientation (PFO). I had some jitters on the way was my first time flying/traveling by myself. Stereotypes of the typical missionary also plagued my mind. I wondered if the other people there would be super holy or no fun at all. I wondered, once again, if I were crazy for venturing out on my own and doing something new.

But...what I found was that I loved Sanford, despite the intense humidity that I think beats Atlanta. The people at New Tribes are legit. Seriously legit. They are kind, hospitable, and welcoming. They did everything in their power to make us feel at home right away, and they ensured that we felt comfortable asking questions. They are also people of prayer, and The rest of the associates who are leaving for the field are amazing. They definitely did not prove my stereotypes of missionaries to be correct. They proved that missionaries are just human. But I also learned so much from these wonderful people. We had an immense amount of time together. We laughed, played, ate, prayed, walked along the waterfront, ate, watched the World Cup, ate... I feel honored and excited to know that I am going to have friends who are literally all over the world praying for me and fighting the same fight I am fighting and serving Jesus in so many ways unique to their gifts and talents. 

The Lord did some awesome things in the time that I was in Sanford. I received a list of the students who will be in my class from another teacher at my school. That was insanely exciting for me. I also met one of the 6th grade students and her mom, who were in town visiting a former teacher from my school! It was such a joy to be connected with them, because they will also be my neighbors!

It is so ridiculous that I dare think to question or doubt the Lord when He has clearly spoken into my life. He is so good. All the time. When I got home last Wednesday, I was delighted to find that even more support had come in than I thought from unexpected and generous friends and donors. What an honor and privilege to receive from other believers and friends who believe in reaching the nations for the furthering of the Kingdom. One day every knee will bow and every tongue will confess that He is Lord! 

Over and over again, He continues to show me His awesome faithfulness. And in Sanford, He gave me such a clear vision of what my (His) ministry for me will be in Mexico. I want to love my kids and let them know that they are loved by Him. I want to love my neighbors and see them come to Christ. I want to grow closer to Him and fall more in love with Him...I just want to see Him move in ways I haven't seen before.

Sunset over the waterfront in Sanford, FL...just another reminder of His goodness!

19Therefore, brothers, since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, 20by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, his body, 21and since we have a great priest over the house of God, 22let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith, having our hearts sprinkled to cleanse us from a guilty conscience and having our bodies washed with pure water. 23Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds. 25Let us not give up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but let us encourage one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.
-Hebrews 10:19-25 


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