Monday, December 26, 2011
I spent 2010-2011 interning at Bethel Church. I was able to be mentored by amazing leaders at Bethel working both in the international department and children's ministry. Under children's ministry, I learned how to empower children to walk in their true identity in Christ teaching them how powerful they are. As part of the international department, a fellow intern and I had a similar desire to see teams come together to go out to the nations. We spent the year talking with leaders, encouraging students to look for people in their lives to build team with and surveying the students to help them find others with common ministry goals. That is still a work in progress and one of the main reasons I am staying in Redding. I have a desire to be a bridge from Bethel to the nations.
I spent most of the summer in China. The highlight from that trip was getting to go out to remote Tibetan areas to share the love of Jesus. That was amazing!! I'll post a more detailed account of that trip so you can read more about that if you would like.
During the fall, I have been learning how to do life and ministry outside of school. I have several teaching jobs. I'm still teaching for the TESL program at Bethel and also teaching ESL to two international students at a high school. Along with that, I teach piano and Chinese. With these jobs, I'm learning the importance of serving my students and teaching them things that will empower them to accomplish their dreams.
I also stay busy in the evenings with facilitating a group at a 18-week workshop on single life, participating in the TESL classes at Bethel and being a part of an evangelistic house church.
Next spring I plan to be more involved in helping people build teams to go to the nations. I also plan to spend the summer in China working alongside missionaries there that are connected with Bethel.
Here are some ways that you can be praying for me for 2012:
That I would continually have a burning desire to seek more of God.
That I would live every day in the present and ask God how I can serve Him now.
At the same time, I'm seeking direction for next year of how I can serve Him with my heart for the nations.
I still desire a husband that I can live life and ministry with.
Thanks for your friendship in my life! I love hearing about what God is doing in your life so keep in touch!
Sunday, April 4, 2010
Hey friends and family,
I just back from my trip to Kenya!! Thank you so much for all of your support and prayers. Everything went super smoothly considering that it is Africa. Of course we had many adventures, but everyone stayed safe and healthy. Let me just give you a rundown of our trip and share some highlights.
We spent our layover in Amsterdam. We had eight hours so we went into the city and met up with a couple who has a ministry to prostitutes. Fritz goes out almost every day just to build relationships and show these girls that they are loved. We had made paper flowers to give to them with encouraging words on them. We went out in small groups with Fritz and got to meet some women and pray for them. It’s an amazing example of loving someone right where they are at. We also just got to pray for and encourage the people involved in this ministry.
About fify hours after leaving Redding, we arrived in Bungoma, Kenya!! We spent the next several days speaking at churches, praying for people in the hospital, loving on a group of street kids, and teaching pastors and children how to hear from God and heal the sick. In the hospital, we saw a paralyzed man get feeling back into his legs, pain subside, and a blind lady start to see images.
For the next half of our trip, we headed to Northern Kenya where the Turkana tribe lives. These people look like they are right out of a National Geographic magazine. You can see what they look like in my pictures. This is a desert area but it had had quite a bit of rain. This is good and bad. Good for the people and the cooler temperatures but it made getting around quite challenging. A bridge had been washed away and we had to cross the river. We made it across with a few Africans pushing our vehicle through the river.
For the next three days, we went to refugee camps and Turkana villages to hand out food and pray for people. We also got to teach them about healing. We connected with a local missionary who has already reached many of these villages and camps. It was amazing to hear them worship in their own tribal language. You could tell they really loved Jesus. In one of the villages we went to, the witch doctor had recently given his life to Jesus.
Because of the rain, we got stuck out in the African bush one day. We had to push our vehicle out of the mud several times and finally ended up getting rescued by another vehicle. We drove into town covered in mud. We were quite the spectacle!!
We also went to the hospital one day. We decided to change the somber atmosphere by doing the Macarena!! Some of the patients jumped in and wanted to learn. The women who had looked sad when we walked in were laughing and dancing right along with us. It was so fun!!
On our way back, we had to cross the river once again and this time it was too high to drive across. We spent a couple of hours waiting but no time was wasted. We ended up gathering a crowd of people together and praying for anyone who needed to be healed. A teammate and I prayed for a boy who couldn’t see very well. Nothing happened at first. I asked him if he believed Jesus could heal him and he said no. I shared the story of the blind lady in Bungoma that was healed and then I asked him again if he believed Jesus could do the same thing for him. He said yes. We prayed again. I had a group of kids lay their hands on him and pray, “Come, Jesus come.” When he opened his eyes, he could see!! His frown changed into a big grin. He could see the rainbow in the sky that he couldn’t see minutes before. It was awesome!!
Our leader finally decided that we needed to all walk across the river. The guys carried our luggage over their heads and we all walked across the river. Fortunately, the current wasn’t that strong so it wasn’t too difficult. We all made it safely across and made it on time to fly back to Nairobi.
As I think back to the trip, some of my favorite moments were just getting to love on the kids. Especially the street kids who were in such need of just being loved on. Loving on one kid at a time was so precious to me!! On this trip, I feel like I got a glimpse of what it was like to live back in Jesus’ time. We fed the poor, we healed the sick, and we loved on the orphans. I can’t think of anything better!!
Thank you again for all of you who supported me to go on this trip. I’m so grateful for getting the opportunity to go.
Monday, November 16, 2009
I wanted to share with you some things that I’ve been learning since I’ve been in school at Bethel and tell you about an exciting adventure I’m going on soon. My time here has certainly been transforming!!
I’ve learned a lot about living a life of faith in the last few months!! Sometimes what we expect God to do is what will happen. So if we don’t expect much, we’re probably not going to get very much. If we want to see God do big things in our lives we have to step out and take risks. If we don’t believe that God can do a miracle, most likely a miracle isn’t going to happen. However, I’m not saying that this is always the case. I believe that sometimes God wants to surprise us and give us something that we weren’t expecting, but when we look at the miracles in the bible, a lot of times it was FAITH that caused the miracle.
So, all of the students at Bethel had to apply for a mission trip. I was planning to apply for the cheapest trips for financial reasons. But then I heard a message about taking risks in our faith. If we don’t set our goals high and ask God for big things, we’re never going to attain big things. So, I applied for all of the mission trips that made my heart leap and those were expensive trips! Well a couple of weeks ago I found out that I was accepted to go to Kenya!!! I was excited and nervous all at the same time. The trip looked amazing but I knew I was going to have to come up with a lot of money!!
The reason why this trip was so attractive to me is that it is working with displaced, broken people. Firstly, we will minister to and with an organization called Global Children’s Movement. We will team up with CHILDREN and go to hospitals, businesses, police stations and the streets to pray for people and partner with God to heal, save and deliver. Can you imagine how exciting that will be to partner with the children of Kenya??!! Secondly, we will fly to Northern Kenya to minister in a multi-national refugee camp and also to the remote and mostly unreached Turkana tribe. These people are known as “the despised people” in Kenya. I love getting to speak to people about their identity and who they are as a child of God. What a better place to do that than to a people who desperately need to know that they are valued.
I would love for you to partner with me in making a difference in Kenya. I can keep you updated on how you can pray for me and my team starting now until we get back. I can also send you updates of my trip. If you want to give financially, there is information below on how you can do that. I have payments due in January and February and the trip is during the last two weeks of March. Please let me know how you want to support me so that I can send you e-mails of the latest happenings.
My journey starts now as I seek God in this trip. I’m taking a risk and expecting supernatural provision so please pray that my faith will grow during this time and my realization of how much my heavenly father loves me will grow even deeper.
Thank you for already supporting and partnering with me in so many areas of my life.
p.s. Financial gifts may be made online at ibssm.org. This gift is tax-deductible and you will receive a statement at the end of the year for your tax records. If you wish your gift to be anonymous, please check the anonymous box. This will allow you to receive an end of year statement, but will not allow the student to see your name. This gift is non-refundable, and if for any reason a team member or team does not go, the money will support another mission trip sponsored by Bethel Church. (If online payment is not an option, donations can be mailed to Bethel Church Attn: Bethel International 933 College View Dr. Redding, CA 96003.)
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Just to give you an idea of what my schedule looks like....
I sometimes get up at 5:00 a.m. and work for 4 hours online as an English test rater. (I only do that about twice a week)
I'm in class from 12:30-5:30. On Thursdays during class time, we all go out to various parts of the city to do outreach. I'm a part of the children's ministry in a specific region. We have a mini-church service for the kids in a park!!
I'm also part of a International Transformation group that meets every week during class. This is for people who are interested in what is traditionally knows as "missions". It's fun to be in a room full of people who burn for reaching the nations like I do!!
When I'm not in school, I'm hanging out with people, having people over, hiking, and doing other various side jobs that make a little bit more money.
Yea, it's pretty darn busy!! The nice thing is that I have my mornings off for the most part and I'm able to use that time to rest and spend time with God before my busy day starts.
Well I could go on and on but I know some of you don't want that many details. I do want to give you some highlights of what I've been learning. If you have some time, please look over these. They are such precious nuggets that I'm sure could change your life!!
I hope to write again soon.
If you have something that's worth eating, people will get hungry for it.
"Drive" wherever you see "green lights". Don't live waiting on God unless God has told you to.
People call cautiousness wise, but you're not going to move many mountains if you're always cautious.
Focus on how much money you want to GIVE, not on how much you want to make.
We need to discover WHOSE we are before we can find out WHO we are.
What do I have already that God wants to supersize.
Stress if caused by living how you think you should be living. Peace is being who you are.
It's dangerous to feel like you've become an expert in something. What you know keeps you from what you need to know.
The greater the destination, the greater the gestation.
Vision is what gives pain a purpose.
Your strength overemphasized is your greatest weakness.
You have as much influence in someone's life as they have value for you.
Hang out with people who have the gift that you want more of.
Wherever you have a scar, you have authority in that area.
Don't put pressure on yourself to overcome all of your weaknesses. Just enjoy Jesus.
When we feel like God's presence comes and goes, it's not that he withdraws. It's just that he changes the way he manifests. He doesn't want us to live on our feelings and always having to feel him. He might want us to seek him in a different way.
We all live in bubbles. The bubble is made up of limits, boundaries, fears, perceptions, protection, opinions, false identity, lies, expectations, what I have the faith for.
What we expect will find us.
How do we get out of that bubble? We have a choice to change.
Sometimes we're in a season where breakthrough isn't going to come unless we stop working for it.
Even when things don't work out, we have to be anchored in the goodness of God.
If we're pursuing something really big, we'll probably fail the first time. If we always succeed our goal isn't big enough.
How to figure out what your destiny is: Find out what is beautiful to you and what aspect of the glory of God you carry. God made your heart beat for something and he has a plan for carrying that out.
We all have dreams starting when we were a child. Sometimes lack of love or things that happen to us stop us from pursuing our dreams.
Everything is solved in God's presence.
You can be sure of where you want to end up but be unsure of the process that it takes to get there.
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
In the evenings, we partnered with the local churches to put on street crusades. We saw several miracles and salvations. We’d always have a time of ministry at the end where people could come forward for prayer. On the first night, a guy with a broken hand that had metal screws came forward. He could not close his right hand all the way, and he said he could not extend his hand to get his change from the bus. We prayed and he could close his hand almost all the way. Then on the last night of the crusade, Emily asked anyone to stand who needed healing. The same guy stood and the pain left in his hands. He came up and testified, but said he still had limited range of motion. We prayed for him again and he got full range of motion! Another lady came up with stomach pain. We prayed two times commanding the pain to leave. Most of the pain left but not all of it. A guy on our team asked the Holy Spirit what to do again. He heard that there was something that had happened in her past as a child that had hurt her and she needed to forgive someone. She didn’t want to say what it was. The interpreter led her through forgiveness, and the pain left!! The most amazing miracle that I saw at the crusade was with a lady that had had a stroke. When she came up for prayer, you could tell she was in a lot of pain and she was also deaf and mute. We prayed and her back pain left and her hearing came back. Her brother came over, and we had her say something. She could talk, and her brother was so surprised. Her whole face was full of joy as tears streamed down her face. Seeing her raise her hands in thanksgiving to God brought tears to my eyes!! We also had people come forward if they wanted to receive Christ. On one of the nights, a young man with raggedy clothes came out of nowhere right up to the front. One of the worship leaders led the ragged young man to Jesus, both in tears. There were lots of other healings that happened. We were all praying for different people so I only have the stories of what I saw happen. All of us left that night with such a high. There’s nothing like seeing the hand of God touch people like that.
Another highlight for me was getting to empower the kids that I came across. I really wanted them to see who they are in Christ at a young age. As much as possible when I was praying for someone, I’d gather the kids around me to help me pray. When I’d pray for the kids, I’d tell them that they can also lay their hands on people and see them get healed. When all of the adults were doing a “listening to God” exercise, I encouraged a young girl that she could also participate. I told her the word from God that I felt like I was getting for her and then she told me what she saw for me. It was an awesome experience seeing her grasp the idea that God was speaking to her.
Thanks so much for all of your prayers and support. I’m so grateful that I got to have this experience in Nicaragua and I couldn’t have done it without all of your support!!!
Tuesday, December 23, 2008
Sorry it’s taken me this long to put an update up! School just keeps getting busier so it’s been harder to find the time to journal out my thoughts even for myself.
Now it feels impossible to summarize what I’ve been learning, but I’ll do my best.
They’ve focused a lot on identity in the last couple of months. They want to make sure we know who we are in Christ before they send us out to do more ministry.
I went on my first ministry trip over the Thanksgiving break. A group of us went on a surfing/ministry trip to Santa Cruz. A couple of second year students came and it was such a blessing to be under their guidance and leadership. We went out to one of the main areas of downtown Santa Cruz and asked God who He wanted to bless. I was with one of the second year students named Chris. He’s learned to be extremely bold and so it was great having some of that boldness rub off on me. As we were standing there, he asked God to highlight people for us. One guy was highlighted to me and Chris asked me what I thought he needed prayer for. The first thought that popped into my head was back pain. Chris said he was thinking the same thing. We went up to him and asked him if he had back pain and he said he did. We asked if we could pray for him and after we prayed he said he felt better. Another guy came up to him and “he’s got pain in his hands” popped into my head. I asked him if that was the case and sure enough he was an artist and said he suffered from hand cramps. What Chris taught me from this experience is that God can speak to us through what we think are our own thoughts or imagination. I’m learning that if I get a picture of something as I’m praying for someone, it could be God giving me that picture. I’ve been more bold in telling the person I’m praying for what I’m seeing and they have been really blessed by it!! We are all practicing getting words or pictures from God so I’m not always right especially when I try to get specific details about their life but people who are more experienced than I am have told me you get better with practice. It’s just learning how to be more aware of God’s voice and taking the risk to share it with someone even if you’re not sure you’re right. Learning this kind of thing has been so exciting for me because it’s something I’ve always had a desire to do. I just didn’t know how to grow in it. Next year I’m planning to dive into as many ministry experiences as I can so I can get the mentorship of people who are more experienced that I am and grow in the gifts God has given me.
We’ve just started our Christmas break and I’m in Tennessee with family for the holidays.
I hope all of you have a wonderful Christmas!!!
If you want to keep reading, here are some highlights from my notes. They are in random order and from many different messages. I hope you can follow them.
Like a dance, you just need to look at Jesus’ face. You don’t have to know the next step because Jesus is such a good leader.
A good leader makes us look like a good dancer, but we have to remember that it’s because of Him that we know what to do next.
We can’t control what happens to us but we can control our response to it.
The greatest measure of breakthrough comes when you get past the point when it’s comfortable.
Acts 5:15-Peter’s shadow healed people. Why? His reality was 3 years of hanging out with Jesus. Our reality has been so watered down. Peter saw the transfiguration so when he prays, he knows what it’s supposed to look like.
He loves you just the way you are but he loves you too much to leave you the way you are.
How we see God is how we do ministry. The more we see how good God is, the more miracles we’ll see.
God told Chris (a staff member) that if you want to see more people healed, pray for more people.
It’s not our responsibility to heal a person. If you feel that, you will get burned out.
Many people have an offense against God for what He hasn’t done. That blocks the miracles.
Our prayers can be short. Jesus’ were. Chris found the most results when his prayers were quick.
Everyone is called to greatness, but not everyone will achieve greatness.
Don’t be willing just to take the good road, but take the higher road. Taking the easy road will rob you of the life you’re meant to live.
It takes character and perseverance to stay at the top.
Your faith will be tested if you want to be someone great.
If you want to be a whole person, don’t run from adversity.
If you settle for only the things you can do in the natural, you’re setting yourself up for second best.
Being thankful opens up doors to new dimensions of God. Thankfulness is the main component of our spiritual warfare. Prayer without thanksgiving is often faithless begging.
Capture worry by saying thank you for something that happened in the past.
Pray less and thank more.
Courage is fear that has said its prayers (everyone has fear)
Religion makes rules that God didn’t make.
God is looking for people who are not looking for commands but permission. He’s already given us commands. His spirit has already come. His power is already here. We just haven’t discovered what’s already here. We need to step into what God has already released.
Persistent prayer is not to change God, it’s to change us.
Do things based on Christ’s identity when you don’t feel your own.
Satan uses fear to stop you from ministering to people.
Look at what the enemy is doing to see what God wants to do. For example, people are drawn to the supernatural when you look at books like Harry Potter and TV shows that involve psychics. That shows that God wants to show up more supernaturally. The New Age movement started when people were looking for the supernatural and it wasn’t in the church.
You can’t handle more freedom if you’re not willing to take on more responsibility.
What are the restrictions that you have confined heaven to?
If you don’t have the paradigm of royalty, you’ll be afraid more often that you should be.
You can be a Christian and expect nothing from heaven.
Giving is not losing. It is sowing.
God doesn’t mind you having stuff. He minds when your stuff has you.
A lot of our prayers are just to avoid pain. God is after something more. God is interested in helping us grow.
If you want to have joy, rejoice first, then the joy will come.
Feed your heart on what God is doing and has done, not on what he hasn’t done.
God doesn’t want us to do stuff for him. He just wants us to love Him.
I don’t want a God that is my size.
People are aching for hope and we have it!