Thursday, 5 July 2012

In the UK

Thank you Jesus we are here!!! The last few weeks of lecture phase were amazing but I'm glad we're finally here!!

We stayed at The King's Lodge YWAM Base in Nuneaton last night. The base is beautiful. It's an old English mansion or hotel. Three floors, beautiful rooms, hardwood floors, gorgeous lounges, green fields. I feel like I'm in an olde English film!! There's a Performing Arts DTS here from Amsterdam. They are very cool and it looks like we may be doing some street ministry with them :)

This afternoon we are taking the train to Coventry. We will be staying at Grace Baptist Church for the next month before we head to London for the Olympics. Coventry is football (soccer) center for the Olympics. It's also the doorstep for all our church, school and street ministries that we will be doing over the next month.

For now we are relaxing and trying to recharge offer 48 hrs of traveling. Tomorrow the real fun begins. Please pray for us as we continue to trust for finances, VISAs, and other needs.

With all this rest I will have no problems with my voice giving out before my heart does!

God bless

Tuesday, 22 May 2012

The Plumb Line

Well, after a disappointing week learning about "God the Artist" (which was more like grade 1 art class) we got to the good stuff! The Divine Plumb Line! You may be asking yourself, what on EARTH is a plumb line? And how does it become divine?!? That's what I was wondering, so the weekend before I decided to Goggle it and see what I could find out. I took a look at a few pages and decided I wasn't ready to deal with the stuff coming ahead. It was my first moment of wanting to leave and not come back.  It was a fleeting thought, no more than a second, but it was still there. I knew this was going to be a week where God stirred the pot of my heart some more.

A plumb line is a tool used by wall builders and carpenters to make sure something is built straight. It consists of a rope with a led weight at the bottom. The Divine plumb line consists of the rope, truth (God's word) and the weight (love).  I could go into more detail but then I'd have to reteach everything I learned in a week and that would get tedious! I'll just move on.

A big part of the teaching was about forgiveness. We talked about all the different people that can hurt you and some of the different ways they do it.  For me, the subject of parents came up again. God clearly needed me to deal with stuff and wasn't gonna let me off easy.

On Wednesday, Erika (our teacher) asked us to prepare a presentation on something that God was doing in our hearts this week. Olivia, my roommate leaned over and told me to deal with me parent stuff. In fact, I'm very grateful to Olivia because if she hadn't have pushed me I might not have done it. I spent most of Wednesday crying and processing. I skipped local outreach because I couldn't get myself together in time. It was all very overwhelming. I kept thinking I didn't want to do it. God kept telling me I had to and showing me all the hurts that I needed to forgive. Vimbai, one of the leaders stayed with me. It was nice cause she just sat with me and let me cry it out! As I as sitting there, God began to give me a picture of what my presentation should look like. I'll fill you in on that in a moment.

Thursday Erika asked us to find our own spot and ask God who we needed to forgive in our lives and what should we do to deal with it? Write a letter? A song? Talk to them in person? Talk to a leader about it? I got my answer before I even started to get up. WRITE A LETTER. Great idea God! I'm gonna write a letter to my parents telling them all the ways they had hurt me in the past... sound pleasant! WHAT COULD GO WRONG WITH THAT?!?  Here's the thing though, the picture God gave me for my presentation... was a letter in a slide show. I can't believe I'm still amazed at His consistency, but I am.

So that's what I did. I wrote two letters, one to my dad and one to my mom. The slides alternated between things they had done to hurt me and the words, I forgive you. Then there were slides confessing all the things I had done to them followed by the request, please forgive me. While these slides were rolling I tore pages out of a book that had the same things written on them and threw them away. A prophetic action to say that I will no longer carry any of that in my heart but I will throw it away and let God take care of it.  Behind all of this a song was playing. Its a song by Bob Carlisle called Butterfly Kisses. It's a song that I've always had a hard time with because my relationship with my father was never like that, nor did I think it would ever be like that.

The presentation went well, and the words that my classmates gave to me were comforting and encouraging. The rest of the week was presentations and ministering to each other.  This is only beginning of this journey with my parents. I know that God is all over this situation and He will continue to lead me in the journey.

Interesting, through all of this, my voice still gives out before my heart does!

Sunday, 6 May 2012

Holy Spirit Week

OH MY GOD!!! HOW AMAZING IS YOUR SPIRIT!?!?!  I have NEVER been so in tune with the Holy Spirit like I am after Holy Spirit Week.  We actually had this teaching last week but because I was sick I didn't post about it. 

Stefan, who actually pioneered the base here in Worcester, came to teach us about the Holy Spirit.  I wasn't sure what to expect. Was it going to be like the teachings I received when I was an intern at the Pentecostal Assemblies of Canada (PAOC)? Was I in store for something completely different?

Turns out the latter was what I was in for.  The first morning we talked about all the different gifts of the spirit and where they were each displayed in scripture (Old and New Testament).  Stefan and Ingala, his sister, then gave some words to a few people which started a giant prayer circle around all the girls.  The guys prayed for healing for all of us from parents that either weren't there, or that abused us as well as any other people in our lives that hurt us.  It was very powerful and God did a lot in my heart that morning. I spent a lot of time crying on the floor letting Him heal me and start making my heart whole again. 

That evening Stefan taught on manifestations of the Holy Spirit. I only remember the first half of the teaching. Not because I fell asleep. I actually got totally drunk on the Holy Spirit, thanks to a touch and blessing prayer from Stefan, and spent a very long time laughing hysterically on the floor!!!  If you have never experienced the fullness of God on you manifest by the Holy Spirit I pray that the Holy Spirits falls on you in an awesome and powerful way. There is nothing better than soaking in his awesomeness!!!

The rest of the week was along the same lines, lots of in depth learning about a few of the gifts in the morning and soaking in the evening!

My second favourite evening of the week was Wednesday cause it was give it away night. We had to pray and ask God what He wanted us to give up and who to give it to.  It was amazing to witness people joyfully giving of themselves for others and to see how it blessed other people. And of course we ended with a solid soak in the Holy Spirit.  I again spent a great deal of time on the floor laughing.  That wasn't all though, I also had many words of prophecy for a bunch of my classmates which I gave obediently and watched God work through the words He had given me. WHAT AN EXPERIENCE!!!! I am soooooo thankful that God has call me to be "...a prophet to the nations" (Jer 1:5). I am a tool for God's grace to be shown through joy and healing!! Woop woop!!!!!!

I want to keep writing but I know this is getting long. Also, I've been soaking and drunk in the spirit now since around 3:30 (it's now like 8:30) and writing about the H.S. is just making it better so I will call it quits for tonight. I pray God's blessing upon all of you and ask you to meditate on the fact that the fullness of God is in YOU!!!

P.S. you know my saying "my voice gives out before my heart does"? TRUE STORY... I'm still trying to get my full voice back!  And I'm beginning to think my heart will never give out, PRAISE GOD!!!

Saturday, 21 April 2012

2 Weeks In

Wow, sorry it has taken me so long to post. It's been a crazy couple of weeks.  I'm not really sure where to start.  The first week was kind of all over the place. Not everyone arrived at the same time but it was kind of nice cause we all got to know each other better that way. In fact, we've been told, on a number of occasions, that no one has ever seen a DTS become so close so fast! We already Phileo (friendly love) each other so much.  Our TDTS is different in another way, the guys outnumber the gals! It definitely creates a very different atmosphere from what most of us are used to.  I'm excited to see how it affects our dynamic a couple months in.

Our first couple classes were on hearing God's voice and intercession. Actually, they taught us intercession before how to hear God's voice which I thought was a little backwards. None the less, I learned a lot and have been really aware of God speaking to me this week.

I am constantly amazed at all the things God has been doing in all of us in just the first 2 weeks.  He has been challenging and comforting all at the same time and I'm loving every minute of it.  This week we learned about getting more into the Word. How to take a passage and grasp a greater revelation just by using other scripture.  I am so excited to get more into the Word!

We also talked about relationships, family dynamics and codependency. Those were a tough couple days for me.  There have been a lot of hurts in my life, especially from family.  I have a long road ahead of me, to heal from those hurts, but I feel like I'm finally ready for God to take the reigns and free me. Praise God!

What else... oh ya! We found out about our local outreach that we do every week! Were helping at an after school program for kids age 10-17. we will be teaching them art, drama and dance for 1 1/2 hours every Wednesday afternoon. I'm in the dance group and am so pumped to see what God has in store for these kids!

Last but not least, Our worship team is gonna be off the chain!!!!!  We have workshops twice a week where we are preparing for London outreach.  We have an amazing talent filled group! There are only 8 of us but we have 3 electric players, 3 bass player, 5 acoustic players, 3 keyboard/piano players,  6 singers and a drummer! CRAZY!!!!! The begging of our set list is coming together already and our first opportunity to lead is in 2 weeks... eek. I know we'll be ready cause we all have Christ at the center of our team and talent. What a service its gonna be :)

That's all for now. I'll try and write more often if I can. Be blessed everyone!

My voice gives out before my heart does

Monday, 2 April 2012

It Has Begun

I still can't believe this is actually happening. I am going to South Africa!!! It's so surreal. Right now I just feel like I'm taking a short holiday in Minneapolis but deep down I know that in the at 11am tomorrow Dan and Kathy, my pastor and his wife, will be dropping me off at the airport.  How did this happen?!? It feels like just yesterday I was telling people I felt God calling me to South Africa! Now I'm only a 23 hour plane ride away :s.

It certainly has been an amazing journey so far. Every step of the way God has been teaching me to trust Him. I didn't know where I was going to get the money for flights, tuition, and supplies, God provided. I didn't know if my Study Visa would be approved or if it would arrive in time, God provided (in a very timely fashion I might add). When I found out that we were going to London, England during the Olympics for outreach I didn't know if I had the extra funds to cover the extra costs, God provided. I have never found myself more in awe of God than I am right now. The fact that He would take someone like me, someone broken, unclean, and wholly unworthy, and send me halfway across the world to mold and shape me for His glory... AMAZING, AWESOME, HUMBLING!!! Trusting in God has gotten me this far and as long as I continue to trust in Him I will be able to do everything else.

I always wondered what people meant when they said they had been "called" somewhere by God. What does that look like? What does God's voice sound like? Are you sure it was God and not the 5 burritos you had for supper?  Now I know! This is what it looked like for me. I never heard a voice, didn't receive an email, a tweet, and IM, nothing. I just had this overwhelming knowing in my heart that this was where He needed me to be. So that's where I'm going. As crazy and nonsensical as I sometimes think it is, I'm going!

I think that's all for now. I've typed enough that the music running through my head has gone down to a soft whisper which means I may get some sleep tonight. I will try and post again when I arrive in Amsterdam.

As always,
My voice gives out before my heart does!
God Bless everyone

Tuesday, 14 February 2012

Just another day

For some people, February 14th is a day to celebrate that "special someone" in your life.  You buy them gifts and cards and spend some extra time with them to show just how much you really love and appreciate them.

For others, it is a day to dwell on loneliness.  To do everything within their power to forget that they don't have a "special someone".  A person to buy them gifts and cards and to spend extra time with to know how much they are really loved.

Yesterday I would have put myself in that second category, but today, things have changed.  I no longer feel the need to dwell on not having a guy on my arm to buy me roses and all that other stuff (that quite frankly could be done every other day of the year).  For me, Valentine's day is becoming just another day.  I will get up, go to work, go home, have a killer work out, and go to bed.  It won't be any more or less special, it will

Leading worship at EFFEKT (the college and carrier group at Dakota Community Church) tonight was tough. I've had a challenging week and that always makes it a little harder to get into leading.  As I was putting together the worship slides, I felt very... at peace.  Even though I had been having an increasingly hard time with the approach of "V Day", ready and typing out the lyrics to some of my favorite worship songs seemed to sooth the aches I didn't know I was feeling. 

I am not on this earth to be some guys trophy, or to spend all my time dating trying to find "the one".  I am on this earth serve my God with my whole heart! I am here to be His... period.  No matter how lonely I feel in a moment of weakness, I am never truly alone.  I don't need to go around trying to find "the one" because He already found me.  I would much rather spend my days singing and worshiping Him.  Thanking Him for all the wonderful things He has done for me and for all the gifts He has given me. 

I just realized something... maybe Valentine's day will be a special day.  Maybe I'll spend a little extra time with my Father up above.  Show Him how much I really love Him and am grateful for Him in my life.  I will read, pray and sing until I can't make a sound anymore. Then I will continue to worship Him in my heart because...

my voice gives out before my heart does

Tuesday, 7 February 2012

Adventure of a Lifetime

It has begun

I am embarking on probably one of the craziest adventures of my short life so far.  I am preparing to go to Worcester, South Africa with Youth With A Mission (YWAM) on a Troubadour Discipleship Training School.  It will be 4 months of growth, challenges, obstacles, miracles, and other gracious wonders of God.

I have 4 friends who either have done different YWAM schools, or a currently doing them.  They have all told me to prepare for God to do amazing things in my life. That He will challenge me and test me. I am more ready than I think even I would like to admit.  The thought of God taking me and molding me into the woman He intended me to be is thrilling. The changes I've seen in those friends that have already come home are all the "warning" I need. I am so blessed to have these friends in my life.  They are a constant encouragement to me and a true blessing in life. 

With all the preparations going on, funding is the one stressing me out the most.  Raising a large amount of $ in 2 months... am I surprised?... No!  However, I have been praying, both alone and with friends, that God will provide the funds.  Today, some of that prayer was answered when my Mom and Step-dad told me they were going to pay for about 80% of my flight to and from South Africa. I was floored, speechless even.  How is it that they can find space in their budget to help me fly halfway round the world? It can only be a God thing.

I feel like I am living in such an amazing time right now. God is clearly leading me somewhere and I can't wait to get there. Through it all I will be singing and praising His name and I know that even when I'm tired and stressed,

My voice gives out before my heart does