week four…and outreach announcement!

hey friends – this week was so great.  we had this teaching called the divine plumb line, led by jerry praetzel.  the idea is that we all build walls based on lies we hear from false prophets in our lives.  the walls we build keep us disconnected, which is the opposite of the kingdom of God.  we were made for community and authenticity.  ezekiel 13:14 talks about breaking down whitewashed walls and in the process seeing the Lord.  so after two days of lecture, we spent time with our classmates breaking down walls.  some of us had deep pain and hurt we had to heal from, some of us caused deep pain and hurt we had to repent of…but each one of us had walls broken down.  the atmosphere of our classroom kept getting lighter and lighter as we brought lies to the light and replaced them with truth.  it was so wonderful, friends.  i am walking in new freedom – and settling into a lifestyle of openness and brokenness.  i want my life to be open and accessible to other people – so i have to open it first and clean out the lies.  the greatest tool for ministry i have is my life – being open about how Jesus healed the brokenness in my life and inviting others to walk in healing and freedom.

the glory of God is man fully alive.

also…i know where i’m going on outreach.  if you haven’t heard, i’m going to Belize and Guatemala.  i’m so over-the-moon happy – the Lord put Belize in my heart several months ago as a place I’d love to serve and i cannot believe how quickly that chance came!  i am still in the process of support-raising – i have $2000 left to pay for my outreach phase.  if you feel called to support me financially, you can send a check to YWAM Chico, written out to YWAM with my name in the memo line.

Mail to:

Youth With A Mission: Registrar

15850 Richardson Springs Rd.

Chico, CA 95973

have i mentioned how much i love you all?  thank you for praying for me – keep praying that i would be fully present in this process, that my support would come in, and that i would have clear direction for the next piece of this journey.  i’ll keep you posted!

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week three…truth box.

this week in lecture we talked about truth…who is God and who am i?  God is who he says he is and i am who he says i am.  this was a good week – a lot of review from my worldview class at focus on the family, but it was a good week still.

this week i was challenged to set aside what i know in my mind about God – what I know from other people, what i know from books, even what i know from the Bible – and seek personal revelation about God.  i have a tendency to rely on what i know about God, because it feels safe and secure.  but i want to know God and his ways – that can only come through personal revelation.  and revelation brings transformation – transformation is my goal.  so my time here is starting to look different – i am here to set aside distractions and seek the Lord’s face…to seek personal revelation about the character of God.  i’m being more intentional about the way i use my free time – i want to rest in the stillness and silence instead of running to facebook, music, and people.

i only have 120 days left here…last week i was counting down the days til i got my freedom back.  today i count down the days with psalm 90:12 in mind, “so teach us to number our days that we may gain a heart of wisdom.”  i am seeking a heart of wisdom.  God gave me this special season to take a break from learning about him and begin seeking him.

“you will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart.”  jeremiah 29:13

week two…extravagant love

oh friends…this week changed me.

our speaker this week was joe ferrante – his topic was “the Father heart of God.”  on monday after class, i had a really rough afternoon – i felt lost and confused, still unsure if this was the place for me.  tuesday morning was enjoyable – but i still felt a nagging sense to leave.  i went to town with two classmates and processed with them – talked through all the rough feelings i had, the thoughts i was having…i considered going to the airport, without my stuff…i just wanted to get out of here.  my friend missy prayed over me and the situation – we prayed the whole time we drove down the road back to base, i felt refreshed  and had some clarity.

tuesday nite is base meeting, a time when all the staff gets to hear from our DTS speaker.  the room was full of people, but joe was speaking to me.  when the meeting was over, missy asked me when i talked to joe – his message was full of specific answers to our prayer.  it was crazy, friends – i never talked to joe.  i felt so clearly called to stay here, that God will work great things through me while i’m here – it was so encouraging.  later that night, missy anointed me with psalm 131 – which is a psalm i read nearly every morning since i got here…crazy again!

it gets better…wednesday in class we talked about shame and condemnation – how the enemy uses that to paralyze God’s most faithful servants.  friends, the notes on the white board came straight from my journal…joe walked us through the steps of shame – doubt, confusion, fear, panic, and despair.  i realized that i was living in shame/condemnation since i got here – the enemy convinced me that i wasn’t spiritual enough to be here, i was too worldly and not Christian enough to be here.  anyway – it was so wild that joe’s message came when it did.  i went into town on wednesday and was talking with my friend joy about how this is going – i mentioned that i wanted to thank joe for being so in tune with the Spirit and as we pulled into the starbucks parking lot we noticed joe’s car two spots down from us…i jumped out and talked with him.

so here’s the deal – the Spirit worked this week, joe wasn’t even supposed to be the speaker this week, and it’s possible that i wouldn’t have been here for week three – that’s how badly i wanted to leave.  but not anymore, friends, i’m not going anywhere…i’m here til the end.  and i’m so happy.

week one…done.

so much has happened this week, friends!

lecture phase of DTS began with a week of teaching from our base director, Dale Harrison, on the subject of intimacy with God.  wow friends, i was rocked this week.  i have such a strong sense of being in the refiner’s fire – being purified and stripped of anything that keeps me from seeing God’s glory and that is a hard place to be.  but i feel so confident that i will be more radiant when i’m done here…and that’s good.

we began our work duties for the 3-months – i’m on breakfast duty!  not so fun – i have to be in the kitchen between 5:30 and 6am with my fellow breakfast prep friend, but between 3-5p when everyone else is out working i’m home relaxing…well, using the internet because it it is turned on at 3p each day 🙂

dear friends, you are special to me and i think about you often.  i wish i could send you each a personal update and message – for right now this will have to do.  when i get home i’ll have coffee with each of you and tell you all about this journey.

love you all.

feeling settled.

wow, friends.  i am so thankful for you.  friday was a low point – it was helpful for me to blog about the crazy feelings i was processing and you all were so encouraging!

i’m in a much better place now – still processing this situation, but i feel more emotionally stable 🙂  so i’d like to give you the low-down on my DTS here in Chico.

the base is beautiful – i live in the mountains, with sulfur springs and hiking trails all around.  i went on my first hike here yesterday and word on the street is that we hauled on our way up – it usually takes between 30-45 minutes one way and we got up the mountain in 20…woah!  it was beautiful.  the lodge i live in is a common space i share with 5 other young ladies, 1 guy, and a family of 3.  it’s so wonderful to have every single meal prepared for me – the staff prepares meals, and i might too if that is my work duty.  thursday and friday were orientation days – we got to know each other, learned about ywam, and became oriented to the base.

monday the fun begins – we have the same daily schedule throughout the week…breakfast is a 6:45 each day, then class begins at 8.  i’m so looking forward to learning again in a lecture-style environment (i know that makes me a little dorky) and sitting under someone’s teaching.  we have a creative journaling assignment each week – the creative part won’t be hard for me at all, surprise surprise.

i have no idea where our outreach will be – you better believe i’ll tell you as soon as i know – i’m dying to know!  also, the cell phone service is nearly non-existent here in the mountains and our internet access is restricted during the week…facebook is pretty reliable in terms of communication – i just can’t check FB whenever i want.  the texting and phone conversations are not happening very often…

okay – thanks for sticking with me, this is quite an experience.  even at my lowest this last week, i knew i needed to stay here and absorb all that this DTS has for me, i appreciate the safety and comfort of my friends and family to honestly share what’s been rough.

love you friends.  peace.