Spain has so many beautiful things to offer that one simply can not learn all of them at once. I spent a month in Spain in several cities with the most of my time spent in Huelva, Malaga, and Pamplona. Whether it is North, South, landlocked or coast, there is so much beauty and culture […]
I have noticed planning never actually works anyways!
Sometimes what you plan isn’t really what is going to happen. But I am gonna tell you how I have gotten through some really unexpected changes lately.
Earlier this month I had sat down and budgeted out our entire next 2 months with the income we were expecting to have! And then…. the unexpected happens! Here’s the whole story.
Recently my husband was working for a family taking care of their kids and cleaning their house and all that stuff, making some pretty good money! So we were okay! And then…. one day they just come home and told him they didn’t need him anymore… totally unfair right?! Right! They took away everything overnight, they pulled our feet out from underneath us with no compassion not even enough money to get us through the month.
I just graduated cosmetology school and have slowly been building my clientele and that takes some serious time! Which is great, when you have that. But unfortunately we don’t have that time right now. So what are we doing now?
My husband and I are people of faith, yet in moments like this… it is hard to believe it will be okay sometimes. Sometimes, regardless of how much you want to believe, it just hurts! And that is okay! Right now, we are in a season of disappointment and feeling like we were left in the dirt.
We are staring hopelessness in the face. And all we can do is Pray. That’s it that’s all we can do. We are obviously applying for jobs and working towards a goal together but what seems to be the only thing getting us through is prayer. Everyday, we keep declaring; who we are, we are children of God. Who God is, He is faithful, and never forsakes us. We remind ourselves, even the lilies of the field are clothed with such beauty that Saul in all of his glory doesn’t compare. We remind ourselves that if our father takes such good care of them, he will always take much better care of his children whom he loves!
Even when we feel we have nothing, we are not lacking. We are starting at hopelessness telling it, who my God is! Telling hopelessness to back down and bow before my God.
I keep looking at this budget that I planned on MY terms and on what I thought was going to be reality. Because of the security we had in OURSELVES. God told my husband the day he lost his job earlier that morning, “you say I am a good father, so when will you truly believe that and trust me?” We looked at each other and said, “wow, well then… God is on the move. He will always come through and he will be who holds our future.” And even when that seems like it was a false statement, my God is true! We have had exactly enough money to cover all of our bills for the end of this month and even more left over. This morning I was contacted about a job I applied for and my clients are coming in this week as well! We know, without a doubt that our God is on the move! And we know, that all good things come from him! In his timing! Because if it were a second before or after his perfect timing, it would no longer be perfect.
We are not hopeless! We are not lacking! We have a father who sees us, who loves us, and who wants to watch us succeed! We have a God who moves mountains to reach his children and we have a Savior who is fighting for us! And that is the hope we must hold onto! That he is our father and he works all for the good of those who love him and who are called according to his great will.
No matter my plan, my God always makes my path straight and in him I am lacking nothing. For the testing of my faith brings perseverance and I will be made complete in Him.
You will get through whatever struggle is before you. You have a good good father who takes compassion on his children. Compassion so strong he will literally do ANYTHING to change your circumstances. For he is Good!
Sometimes in life the worst of the worst likes to happen… why… who knows.
The bible tells us that in this life we will suffer, in this life there is pain, in this life things suck sometimes. but the Bible also tells us, there is hope for a better future, A God that is greater than our problems, and good that will come from any situation.
This Morning, our car got broken into here in this lovely city of Chicago and very important things were taken. Things the world wouldn’t find valuable or worth a lot of money, but what to my husband and I were priceless. A book bag full of our Bibles and journals. Manuel’s Bible was one given to him by a close friend from our YWAM base in Costa Rica. Our journals full of promises from the Lord and words of direction from the whole last year and memories and revelations of our magnificent God. Now we know that just because the paper isn’t there that yeah the promises still stay the same and the revelation doesn’t change… but to anyone, this would suck a lot… because well, we are human.
But as we sit and ponder how really CRAP-tacular this situation might be, we are angry, offended at feeling like we were violated, frustrated that we might not ever get that stuff back. We also choose to rejoice and be joyful and we choose to worship our all mighty God. Why? because even in the midst of the storm, our calm, cool and collected Jesus is still in the boat. Just because there is bad happening to many people right now, doesn’t mean Jesus isn’t in the boat. Even in the situation we HAVE to remember that God Is There. That something will show his Glory in all of this.
So we choose to worship, and we choose to keep our eyes above the waves and declare it is well with my soul. we choose to find Jesus in the middle of the storm because if our eyes are focused on Him, the storm doesn’t seem so big.
Sometimes the situation seems so big because sometimes there is more than just that one thing going on in life and we forget that in the many struggles and situations God is there. Sometimes there’s an accumulation of things going on and this is just the cherry on top. Sometimes we want to point fingers and blame God for the bad but what if instead we raise our hands and glorify him for the good. Thank him for being there because what do we all want when bad things happen? Someone to just be there. and well… here he is, right in the middle, planning miracles and orchestrating greatness. Modifying our character and restoring us to his likeness. EVEN WHEN IT HURTS.
So my lesson in this: I can’t blame myself for this oops. Even if I was the one who forgot to lock the door. I can choose to walk in frustration and anger, or I choose to let God’s omnipresent self be in the middle of this and choose to let God be glorified and even I can pray for the person who stole it, that he will read my words and revelations, my studies and struggles, he can instead of throw it away, read those bible’s and God can change his life! I today can choose also to be the same as yesterday or I can chose today to let God change my heart to look a little more like him today.
So even when it hurts… His love is sufficient. His PEACE surpasses all understanding and he will make all things work for the best of those who love him.
Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
Suddenly, a fierce storm struck the lake, with waves breaking into the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke him up, shouting, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!” Jesus responded, “Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!” Then he got up and rebuked the wind and waves, and suddenly there was a great calm.
“Who kept the sea inside its boundaries as it burst from the womb, I said, ‘This far and no farther will you come. Here your proud waves must stop!’
Job 38:8, 11 NLT
Then Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, “Surely the Lord is in this place, and I did not know it.” And he was afraid and said, “How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of God, and this is the gate of heaven.”
Genesis 28:16-17 ESV
Once upon a time, I believed being a missionary was just a job, just a thing people do if they’re called to do so. But little did I know, not only was it something I did, it became who I am. It became my passion, my dreams, my present, my future and my past. It is now… in my DNA.
Being a missionary didn’t only let me help others but it helped me develop part of me. if not the biggest part of me. Becoming a missionary helped me to become my own person, to become who I wanted to be and who GOD wanted me to be. Being a missionary shaped my life in more ways than i could ever imagine. and it has officially ruined me FOREVER!
I knew missions wasn’t going to be easy, but I never imagined how coming home would have been so much harder. I have been out of the foreign missionary field for almost 2 years now and still… my heart cries out for more. I see the memories that were made and my heart aches because I know… it will never be the same. I think of the countries I have lived and I think, there is no better place. I think of the relationships and friendships that were constructed from the ground up… and the only thing I can think is… THANK YOU LORD. Thank you for giving me a life I could have never imagined for myself, thank you for investing in me so I could love you better and love others better, thank you for taking me on romantic adventures with you where you pursued my heart in ways I never dreamed……
….and yes, thank you. because you ruined me! officially!…. Now every time I think of the amazing you have done, my heart hurts… but don’t worry, it’s a good pain. I ache with longing to see the people I love again and to live together, drinking tea on the porch and reading story’s together. I long to sit in the back of a big black Ford again listening to country music and laughing with my family of ywamers. I miss the late night McDonald deliveries and crazy dance parties. I long to build homes with my builders of hope again. I long to bring freedom to the streets again and to minister to the nations. I long to walk in daily fellowship and worship with the people I miss. I desire to once again be taught and teach in a classroom of people on fire for you, Jesus. I miss daily communion with believers from so many different places. I miss having everyone understand me… even if we didn’t speak the same language… because we spoke the same mission.
Costa Rica, you are the place I grew up to know myself. You are where my walk became my own. You, are where I met some of the most amazing people on the planet. You are where I met the man I would someday marry. You where where I learned about Jesus on His terms and no one else’s. You are where I swam in the ocean for the first time! You’re where I became me… and you… are the reason I forget I am not Tica, Thanks for reaching me Spanish… You have officially ruined me. But thank you!
My YWAM friends, You shaped me in more ways than I could ever have hoped for. You molded my character and shaped my life forever. You hold a place in my heart only you could fill. You held my hand through what I thought was Hell. You laughed with me in what I would describe some of the best days of my life. YOU people ruined me! I will never be able to live a day of my life without thinking of at least 5 of you. You fostered my relationship with Jesus and helped me see his character because of your character. You introduced me to The Lover Of My Soul and taught me how to follow him. and you walked hand in hand with me and my how husband to walk purly and whole heartedly towards our King. You walked with me toward freedom and healing. You all have blessed my life in more ways than I could count. and I couldn’t ask for more. YOU ALL HAVE RUINED ME… but thank you. and I miss you.
So Jesus, Thanks. Thank you because you have officially ruined me… and I… wouldn’t have it any other way!
Here in Costa Rica people who need money stand at parking lots, stores, parks, etc. as security guards for peoples cars and watch over the place in hope for a tip or for someone to give them whatever spare pocket change they have to pay them for watching out for their cars. They hardly make anything and work whatever hours they can possibly can. Most of them are older men mid to late 40 and up.
Yesterday my friend Manuel and I were walking back from getting some coffee and writing news letters. We passed by a park on the way to the YWAM base where we live and there was this old man working as a security guard walking past us going the other direction. We continued walking and talking but the Holy Spirit told me to go and pray for him. Of course, naturally I argued with God for a second and continued to walk… until His prompting got stronger. So I stopped and asked Manny if we could go pray for the man. He of course said yes and we went. We approached the man and asked him if we could pray for him. I told him that I felt that God asked me to talk to him and pray for him. He seemed rather confused, yet honored at the same time. We asked if he had any specific requests and he said, for himself, and his 79 year old sick mom, his sister and her baby and he talked about how hard it has been sense his brother had died. He spoke of the struggle he is going through financially and how he is working so hard to provide for everyone in his family, he began to cry a lot and I could feel his broken heart through the words he said. Manny held his hand and I placed mine on his shoulder and we began to pray, he cried more and prayed in agreement with everything we said. After we prayed for him he thanked us and continued telling us about his life and how his life in Spain was so different than life here and how he wished he could return. He spoke about how he used to speak a lot of English and really enjoyed it, he wanted to remember it so badly and wanted to speak it to me. As we continued talking God put it on my heart go give him the money I had in my pocket (which wasn’t very much) and tell him that it was a prophetic act that God would continue to provide everything he needs and that his family would be taken care of. He cried even more and stood up and he gave me a huge hug and thanked me and we talked for a few more minutes and he hugged us and kissed my hand and asked for God to bless us. He said many sweet words and at the end was very touched. My heart felt so full of the love of God for that sweet man. In the end Manny and I felt so blessed to have been able to talk to him and share the love of God over him!
Just a short story of some of the beautiful things God is doing! 🙂
Never in my life did I ever think this life I live would ever turn out like this… WOW!!
God has literally blown my mind this last couple months! but the last weeks have been Oh My Goodness… Impossible!
We have been praying long and hard for the last 4 months on where God wants outreach for the September DTS to be. He has officially told us and it has been annoucned to the students now that we are headed out to Nicaragua, Germany and Poland and the final 2 weeks back home in Costa Rica! I can’t believe this!! Never in my life would I have thought that I would have been going to Europe like.. Ever…. now 2 times in a little over year!?! WHAT?!? Also never thought I would be living in Costa Rica!! Literally I would am so dumbfounded thinking about this! God has changed so many things in my life and the things in my life He has saved me from is amazing!
Then this week, we did local outreach/ outreach prep. We sent all the students out in small groups in different directions to go pray for people. They went and then us staff fallowed shortly behind them. The students were totally Holy Spirit led, receiving Words of Knowledge for people, healing people and just loving people! One amazing part that I was able to witness was a couple of our kiddos were praying for two men in a moving truck, one man knew Jesus but had been feeling some oppression and just heaviness over his life, so we prayed for him to be set free, then I noticed a bit of scaring on the other mans eye, and we asked if he had sight problems and he said yes and told us about how he stabbed himself in the eye with a machine on accident a few years ago and it scared and he now has a really bad haze over his eye and when he looks with that eye everything is mostly blurry. So we began to pray, one student put his hand on the mans eye and we all laid hands on him and began to pray for healing, declaring clarity and strength in his left eye then the student pulled his hand away from the mans eye and the man suddenly became shocked, he said that as soon as he pulled his hand away, he saw a fog move from his eye, and the man said that he could now read ” Colombia, Te Quiero” on the students bag, which he couldn’t read a few seconds before, then we prayed one more time and the man said he could see almost perfect out of his left eye now! We all rejoiced and the man turns to his friend in the truck and says, “Dude, I am not lying!!” (in Spanish of curse). The man then turns to us and asked if we go to church anywhere in town and so we told him about our church and he said he would be there Sunday, and we gave him all the men a bible and the man who could now see, began to instantly read the bible and finding passages he remembered from church and his buddy was doing the same! they were so excited and could not wait to know more about this amazing God who encountered them on a whole different level than they have ever experienced before! 🙂
I promise you, stepping out in faith will not only change your life, but the lives of others around you! With this DTS that we are taking to these awesome countries, I believe that we are going to see so many things that our sweet Jesus wants to do to encounter those He loves. We are going to be heading out to Nicaragua the 2nd week of December and then out to Germany on about the 20th of December then Poland beginning – mid January. Our focus as this DTS is “Your Kingdom Come.” We want to watch people come to the Lord and see his amazing kingdom come.
Please be praying for us because to bring a group this big to Europe, it costs quite a bit of money, We will need a combine 70,000 and something dollars. We believe our Father wants to open up heaven and pour out His blessing on us, He isn’t going to call and not provide, but we also believe He uses people in His work.
So please be praying for us in these areas:
- Hearts to be open in all these countries
- The finances come in
- Protection over the group
- Unity among the team
- Smooth Travel
And most of all…
- The Kingdom of God to be poured out over ALL His people!Donation Link:
Wow! I can’t believe it is already week 6 of the September DTS, July DTS is 2 weeks into Outreach already and they are in Holland and headed to France pretty soon! but anyway, back to what’s going on a little closer to home… well home for me that is! 😛
We are burning through some crazy intense topics in this DTS. So far we have had Intimacy with God, Character and Nature of God, Power of the Cross (Inner Healing), Fear of God, Holy Spirit and This week is Father Heart! It has been a fun, Spirit packed few weeks!! We have an very unified group of students that are an intense pleasure to work with! We have people from all over the world! USA, Germany, Peru, Angola, Canada, Costa Rica, Ecuador and one is half way from Colombia.
This is an action packed group of kiddos and man is God doing great things in all of them! I have learned so much about God through these students it is amazing. So many different ways he loves his kids and how he sees each on of them in their own unique light. He really is a great dad and man that’s amazing to know!
We have some crazy incredible teachers coming in the next couple months as well, some VERY prophetic people who walk in the Spirit almost daily and they are full of information and testimony of who God is! I am so excited to see the transformation that is going to be coming through these next few weeks.
It is crazy how much of a delight yet challenge staffing a DTS is. I have really had to learn to put myself as a student along side them because I feel like i am learning just as much as they are! I am learning how to step into leadership rolls and how to pray for people better, I have learned that really they are in a place that they want to be poured into and they need to be! So in order to pour into them I have to be sure I am filled up too. I am learning that they are all so unique and to not limit them by my expectations but to watch them flurish in what God is doing in their lives. I am so excited about he way this DTS is going and it is such an important program for young Christians to be able to have a firm foundation in the Lord because they are who will be leading the next future generations of Christians! They need to know how to walk in faith and in them learning that, I am learning it also which is such a blast to do, to have the privolage to grow along side them!
Some crazy things that the Holy Spirit has revealed to me recently are, How God REALLY loves me like his daughter, that I don’t have to strive to be perfect and when I fall, he comes dusts me off and hugs me! I have learned that I have so much more authority though Him then I ever realized before. I now understand that when God sees us, he looks at us with such eyes of love, he sings over us with songs of love, when I wake up in the morning he greets me with a sweet good morning and a kiss on my forehead. Then, when I fall asleep he sits by my bedside to tuck me in and kiss me goodnight just like he did in the morning. He is so gracious and perfect, in all his ways. I heard this story that’s about the angels in Heaven seated in the thrown room of God and they’re completely COVERED in eyes, their eyes have eyes, they are the creatures that see the best out of anything in ALL creation, and they are standing in front of God looking at him with their mountain of eyes…. and the ONLY word they can utter out of their mouths is… Holy… Holy, Holy, Holy… Holy. THAT’S IT! they are literally there and can do nothing else than declare the perfection of who God is. Ummm WOW!!! but that’s not even the best part yet!!! The revelation I had is how God, in all his Holiness and Perfection turns to us who are in Him and He says…. Holy, Holy Holy, Holy. I was like oh… my… lanta… what an indescribable God… A God who is literally declared PERFECT before ALL of creation turns and calls us the same?? He is saying, I see you, through the blood of my son Jesus. When He died and His blood was poured out, and you accepted Him, no longer were you imperfect in my sight, now, MY CHILD, YOU ARE DECLARED HOLY, PERFECT and Without Flaw! That is mind boggling!! WHY?! God what do you gain out of this? You literally could have whipped out the whole world and started all over again, but you chose to stick with us… WHY?! You really didn’t have to do that, but what an INCREDIBLE God you are… Indescribable… Indescribable…
Yeah great way to realize the AMAZING Value God takes in each one of us. My spirit is in this stage of just worship to God for who he really is, for this revelation of who God IS. man… I hope you realize how God see’s you. It will change everything. absolutely EVERYTHING.
Ask Him to show you who He is… and He will.
Thank you for reading this! I hope you enjoy!
Man… Where do I start??
Adjusting this time being here is much, much easier than it was last year for many reasons!
My first month and a half here I was put on the Transportation Team because of my automotive skills. The incredible part about that was all through High School I wanted to be a mechanic and start my own shop… But God called me to missions instead. and I am so happy He did. Even in being in missions I got to be in an auto shop almost every day of the week! He really just confirmed His promise that He WILL always give us the desires of our heart and more! But in being here… I also realized… I don’t wanna be a mechanic anymore. 😛
One of the other incredible things I got to do was be a part of the ministry Home Of Hope, It is a ministry where we build homes for the people in some neighborhoods that are in really bad situations. We go for 2-3 days and build, most of the time with a team that comes and has paid to build the house. Those experiences are so indescribably wonderful, I got to play with some goofy little girls and dance with them in the process of building and that was such a fun time! 🙂 I love that God found another ministry for me to be involved that I can use my hands and grow in practical way while loving on people and sharing Jesus! 🙂
I also was privileged to work with a team of lovely people from Jacksonville, Florida. We did bible distribution in the rain, played with the kids at the shelters, worked with Revolution Skate Ministry, I taught a couple of the girls how to change oil in the base cars and lots more! I had a wonderful time with the younger girls on the team getting to hopefully influence them in a good way through my life and my story through what God has done in my life. I was so blessed by that team, I feel that they changed me more then I changed them. They were wonderful people who just wanted to bless the socks off of us!! I lead with Rasta so that made it a little bit more fun! 😛
I was super blessed to get reconnected with one of my wonderful friends whom used to work on the streets selling himself. We were both super excited to see one another. fortunately he is no longer working on the streets all the time, but my wonderful friend was diagnosed with HIV a couple weeks ago and he is fighting so hard to beat this. He needs large amounts of prayer, love and life spoken over his life. He gave his life to God a few weeks ago so that is a huge positive element to this story. I have known him for almost a year now and I have had the privilege to be a person he loves so very much and I am blessed to be a part of this awesome team of YWAMers who love him to the moon and back. Our hearts break for the pain he has gone through but we rejoice over the redemption that God has showered on him and for the RELENTLESS pursuit of his heart by God! Please keep him in your prayers and send me words if you have any encouragement for him! I will gladly relay the message!! Thank you!!
The other AWESOME thing God has done in my short time here is He has opened doors for me to staff with the September Disciple Ship Training School (DTS) the program I did last year! He has been doing a great work in my heart and my sweet Jesus wants to put his project to work, and I could not be more excited about it. So far we have 17 possibly 18 students if everything works with her visa. I am staffing under the wonderful leaders Lito and Jaymie Espinoza and I am partnered with sweet Becca Frederich we are also waiting on 2 – 3 more possible staff, so we are suuuuper excited for this new chapter in not only our lives but our students lives. We have 8 boys and 9 girls which is incredibly unusual to have that many guys in one DTS but it just shows Gods heart for His boys to grow in Him. I believe God is in an area of fixing the hearts of men and He is using these guys to do such. We have some future world changers in our midst!! Please keep us as a staff in your prayers and our wonderful new students as well. God wants to do some big things and we are hoping that ALL of us will grow even more in our Spiritual Gifts and learn how to walk them out for the glory of GOD. Thank you for all your prayers and support!! I will keep you all posted as much as possible!!
Thank you for everything!! God bless you!!! ❤
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Thanks again!! ❤
Wow… man is staff a bit different than student… wow! But oh my goodness I LOVE IT!! I got here my first week and got tossed into a pretty massive position on base, I got put in transportation which seems like it wouldn’t be huge but its an incredibly important area on base because of the amount of teams we have coming and going all the time. I got put on mostly because Vernon left so I took his spot but now I am also doing vehicle maintenance for the vans to be fixin em up and such. Which I am really enjoying. Stressful at times but great. I haven’t got to work with freedom street yet because they’re on a snort break right now. But I got to see one of the guts I worked with last year who is now off the streets and he officially gave his life to God a couple weeks ago!! I have been making lots of new friends from all over the place lately, which is awesome and I’m so thankful for! Its for sure a blessing to be here. God is doing some amazing things in my heart and in my life and I can’t wait to see what the next year has in store. 🙂
I came across a revelation the other day about loving people who will NEVER love you back. Sometimes we think that we don’t have to love those who will never love us, But is that what Jesus did when He DIED for everyone on a cross bloody and beaten? No, He said, “Father forgive them for they know not what they do…” UM WOW!! Even when the scoffers and mockers were spitting on Him and hitting Him, He still begged for God to grant them Grace. That my friends is love, He died for those who were speaking horrible things about Him and to Him. He died to Himself and to His own desires in order for us sinner/dirty people to be saved. Isn’t it OUR job to love like Jesus, to die to ourselves and be servants to the world in order to show them Jesus? WE are called to Love the unlovely and the unlovable because Jesus loved them first… who are we to pick and choose who should come with us to Heaven? I am sorry, just because someone irritates you doesn’t mean they don’t get to go to Heaven. 😛 that my friend is not how is to work. God desires everyone of us to go to heaven with Him and to spend an eternity walking riiiiiiiight next to him in the most intimate way imaginable (that we can’t even imagine in our little tiny not God brains). Don’t think just for one second that you can’t love the unlovely. you can! It is hard sometimes, I worked with prostitues on the streets, the Johns (guys who buy the girls) are sometimes the LAST people on the planet you want to love, but its not our jobs to say no to loving even the most painful kinda people to love… it’s our job to say YES to decide TO love them regardless of their sin. Die to yourself and love the hardest to love, it hurts, but man when you see that person in Heaven… You will realize why it was all so worth it.
“Never will you look more like your Father in Heaven, Than when you love the unlovely!” ~Beth Moore