Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Friday, 15 October 2010

Holding On to Promises

"In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps." Proverbs 16:9

This verse has helped me through life over and over again. I'm sure I've written a post with it in it before. :) But how true it is.

This summer God was asking me make several commitments. Commitments that scared me. Commitments that meant I couldn't pack up and leave WA if I felt like it. Commitments that put me in a place of complete trust with God. Last spring, I just wanted to leave. I wanted to go to a worship school..any worship school...in order to grow in my music ability and my relationship with God. I had a friend that was planning on attending Bethel Church's School of Supernatural Ministry (and is now currently there) in Redding, California. I had another friend who was moving to Kansas City, Missouri to attend a school at IHOP (International House of Prayer). "Where to I get to go??", I kept asking God. But He kept assuring me that it was okay to not be "going" right now. He showed me that this would be a season of growth in ways I hadn't known. That as I was faithful to be obedient, He would bless me with opportunities to grow in my music. (And, oh how He has blessed me with that!! So much!)
So I committed. I committed to being a volunteer middle school youth leader for another school year (until next summer). And God blessed me with an amazing nanny job that I committed to being at until at least next June.

My life was set. I had the year planned out. I was even able to quit my part-time job at the Christian bookstore, because of the wonderful accommodations of this new nanny job. I had a place to live (rent free) on the property of the family I worked for - a place of my own, I was being paid well to take care of their 3 children three days a week, they were Christians (praise God!), my schedule worked out so I could attend Bible Study Fellowship (BSF)... It was perfect.
Until one day in mid-September (after four great months of loving on their kids), I went in to work on a typical Monday morning to find my boss waiting for me at the kitchen table with a folded paper set in front of him. I wondered what was going on. He asked to talk with me for a little bit. I sat down, and to my utter surprise was told that I was no longer needed as their nanny, that "things weren't really working out as we had hoped", and that they had arranged for someone else to take care of the children from that day forward. I was stunned. Thankfully, he said that I could remain living in the apartment until the end of October so that I could have time to find a new job, and place to live.
My first reaction upon coming home was to cry...and want to run away. I just wanted to move away and start over somewhere else! But God gently reminded me that He still had my best in mind. And that there were things He had called me to Whatcom County to accomplish in this season (for example, reaching out to middle school students!). Then, I began filling out job applications. It hadn't been but about 3 weeks since I had quit working at the bookstore, so I went in and humbly asked Bill (my boss) if he would consider re-hiring me, at least seasonally. He did. And I think with great pleasure (correct me if I'm wrong, Bill.) :)

That's just one of the ways in which my plans have totally been shifted, and where I hold on to this proverb. I also rejoice in this proverb. Because it is in the great surprises of God's determining of steps that wonderful friendships are found.

In August, I found out about a "worship night" that was taking place at a local park, and decided to go. I had no idea who was leading the worship, or any other details. When I got there I soon found out that it was a church from a town about an hour away that was leading worship! Awesome!, I thought. I saw some friends from church, so I went over to stand by them, and was soon invited to join one of them to dance in the grass as we worshiped. She and I both love to express our admiration for God through dance, so I excitedly agreed. As the worship team played we just enjoyed the beautiful presence of Jesus, sang, and danced. The last song was very upbeat, and soon several young guys and a bunch of children were dancing around the pavilion with us! It was so great because the words of the song said, "People from every nation and tribe, from generation to generation, We worship You, for who You are..." and there truly were people from many nations and generations represented! Afterward, a few guys that had danced with us, and some from the band introduced themselves to us and told us about their church. After a short conversation they invited me to join them at a restaurant. I accepted.
Later on some of us became facebo*k friends. The electric guitar player from the worship band shared conversations about music with me, and we talked about hearing each other play sometime in the future. He was also in another band, outside of the church worship team. And of course, I had been playing pretty regularly at local "open mic" nights.
It wasn't until this past Saturday that I actually had the opportunity to hear Feliks' band (The Sweet Dominiques). It was really fun to hear him play, and I also got to sit next to a friend of his whom I found out also has a lot in common with me. Julie and I discovered that we are both twins, both have done YWAM, and also play musical instruments. :) It was super great getting to know her! And the last few days, I've been getting to know Feliks more as well.
I just love being surprised with the opportunity to get to know fellow lovers of Jesus! We truly don't know the plans of the Lord, but oh how good and pleasant they are!

I still don't know where my income will come from (beyond the part-time work I'm getting at the bookstore). I'll probably be moving back in with my family (which is a blessing!). Though the uncertainties of life are present, still am I filled with joy in finding security in the presence of Jesus. I have nothing to worry about, because I know that He determines my steps. And as we've probably all experienced, sometimes life just doesn't go as planned. But I hold on to these promises:

"Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? ...But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well." Matthew 6:25-27,33

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Forty Days

Forty Days for Life. Forty days to fast and pray for our nation. Forty days to fight for life. Forty days to love the broken. Forty days to take a stand.

Starting Sept 21, people across the nation are taking a stand for life. Fasting, prayer, and peaceful rallies are taking place all over the United States in an effort to bring awareness and positive change to America, as it relates to life.

Here is the incredible story of a woman who was born in an abortion clinic after 18 hours of being burned inside her mother from a saline injection(watch both clips...part 1 and 2):

For more information about how you can get involved, check out: this link

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Oh, How He Loves Me!

I really don't have a clue what I'm going to write about... but I'm feeling oddly inspired.

Life is interesting. I love how one day things can seem totally planned and calm, and then the next day plans are scattered and what was calm is turned to chaos. This shift keeps me reliant on Christ... and that, I love. So often I think I have things under control, and life is going as planned, but when what I thought was "right" is suddenly "wrong", I'm humbled once again. My heart points back home - towards the love of my life, my Savior, Jesus. Lately I've found myself in a time of transition. The thing is I have very little idea what I am transitioning into. And the even better thing is, I don't care that I don't know. I am so at peace in His arms. I don't have to know what's going on or where I'm going, because He is all-knowing. Proverbs 16:9 says, "In his heart, a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps." This is so comforting and reassuring to me, because as much as I would like to plan out my life, I can rest in the fact that God has already numbered my days, and laid out the steps of my life. I just have to continue to surrender my will to His, and follow Jesus. As I get to know Him more, I get to know His plans more. Joy fills my heart, because it's not up to me! Jesus is the giver of life, and if we allow Him, the director too! :)

At the end of June, I will be moving out of the place I've called home for the past 8 months. October 6th, 2009 I moved into Bellingham to be a live-in nanny, and have been so blessed to live where I'm living. But there have also been so many struggles and challenges in living with a family that isn't pursuing Jesus. Though I haven't experienced direct opposition or persecution from my host family, there has definitely been direct opposition in the spiritual realm. (Ephesians 6:12 describes the spiritual battle that each follower of Jesus faces). I have been grateful to be an influence in the live of all 4 people that I live with (the 2 boys, and their parents). I know that God has used me (an intercessor) to change the atmosphere of that home, and I can see the changes (though subtle, I know there has been change). Allow though I will be moving out soon, I hope to continue to be apart of their lives, and watch the ways the Lord calls them into fellowship with Him.

What's next? I'm not exactly sure. I have been meeting with a family about possibly becoming there nanny, and will hopefully set things in stone tonight! :) If I do end up working for them, I will be living in a separate apartment on their property (which will be a huge blessing! One of the hardest things with living where I'm at has been not being able to get away and have my ow n space.)

Other changes are coming in my life... not totally sure what they will look like, but they are beginning to take form. I'm so excited for the way God is growing my ability to write and compose music. I'm hoping to record sometime in the near future. It's been so fun to be able to play at "open mic night" at a local coffee shop - they have asked me to be the "featured artist" soon! :) I know God is leading me more into the realm, and it makes my heart giddy.
God has also been bringing AMAZING people into my life to walk this journey with me, and sharpen me, as iron sharpens iron (Proverbs 27:17). I am so blessed to have another mentor, and additional spiritual parents in my life, as well as brothers and sisters who are experiencing life with Jesus in similar ways to me. I'm so blessed. Oh how Jesus loves me. It gets me everyday. I can't believe it. He's so stinking good to me. I'm blown away by His goodness, faithfulness, and love. mmmmm so so good. :) :)

My involvement in youth ministry is going to shift also, but I can't give details of that right now... It's so exciting though! God's got amazing things planned to bring more students into The Kingdom. I've been blessed to be apart of an incredible team of leaders for the last 7 months, and look forward to how God is going to use us this next year.

"He is jealous for me, Loves like a hurricane, I am a tree, bending beneath the weight of His wind and mercy, ...... Oh how He loves me, Oh! Oh how He loves me, How He loves me, oh!"

Wednesday, 21 April 2010

Trusting for Provision

These verses have been ringing through me mind for the last month. I find so much peace in them.

"And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus." Phil. 4:19 (NKJV)

"Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God." Psalm 20:7 (NIV)

I trust in the Lord's provision, and know that He will supply all that I need according to His glorious riches!! And I am seeing His hand of provision more and more.

Wednesday, 7 April 2010

A Tightrope and A Plumb-line

Life has an interesting way of ups and downs. At times things change drastically in a matter of moments. I've noticed over the last month or so, that there are certain things that catch my attention more than others, that draw my focus away from the Cross. It's in these moments of realization that I question my identity, my strength, and my character - often wrongfully so. I don't need to question my identity, perhaps strength, but what I do does not necessarily change who I am. I am a redeemed daughter of the Most High God, and although my attention is not solely focused on His glory at times, my identity doesn't change. Yes, I have moments of vulnerability and weakness, when I choose to succumb to the desires of myself, and take my gaze off the "the Prize".

Okay... so where I am going with this? Well, there is a tension I often feel in striving to be "in the world, but not of the world". It's like a tightrope, a divine tension that allows me examine areas of weakness and observe areas of strength. It brings stability, but not without risk. I find I have to take careful steps forward in order to regain strength and stability, but there is so much trust, faith, and risk involved - just as in the tightrope walk. In addition, there needs to be so much balance. I can't get so concerned with what the world thinks of me that I lose track of what God wants to do in my life, and how He wants to use me. But I also can't get too focused, and close-minded as to neglect the needs of those around. There must be balance.
I'm also learning that in order to walk in alignment with Christ, I need to have His divine plumb-line in place in life. The standards I want to live out, must match up to Biblical standards. In order to bring about the things of Christ in my life, standards need to be established and put into effect.

It's a journey, and I have so much to still learn and develop, but I find joy in knowing that there is One who sees the "big picture", and knows when and how to reveal things of the future to me. I am also learning to be in the "here & now", and not get too caught up with where I am going in life. I'm learning to rest in the journey and look with excitement to where God is taking me.

Sunday, 28 March 2010

Update on life...

So, it's been over two months since I've written, and for that I am sorry. What's up with me? Well, let's see...

- I didn't receive the scholarship to hairdressing school that I had applied for, and made the decision not to go because I didn't want to take out so much debt in loans.

- I was rehired at the Christian bookstore, and am working part-time there.

- I am still a live-in nanny, but have also acquired one day a week of nannying for another neighboring family.

- I FINALLY passed the drive test, and am now a licensed driver!! WOOHOO!!!

- I am pursuing music more and more, and have a few friends that are helping me grow in my ability to play guitar, and write music. I still sing in the choir at church. I am also pursuing more ministry in intercession and the prophetic, as I feel God moving and growing me more in these gifts.

- I am still a volunteer middle school youth leader, and love my group of 8th grade girls! They are challenging at times, but it's so great to see how they have been growing in their relationship with God. I am no longer singing on the worship teams at youth group, but focusing more on how I can be the best leader I can be, and investing in the lives of students.

- I am considering returning to school. It's been two years since I graduated from community college, and it kinda freaks me out to want to jump back in the circle. But I'm considering it. Not sure what I want to get a BA in, but tossing around the idea of communication or something.

-I am excited to see where this next season of life takes me, and the amazing things that God is going to do in and through me. It's been almost a year since I returned from YWAM, and what a journey it has been. This last year has been a season of refinement and purification - very challenging at times, but so good for me. I look forward to sharing more about what I am doing in the near future, and hopefully I won't neglect blogging for so long. :)


Thursday, 21 January 2010

Searching for hope

Life has proved to have the struggles, trials, and temptations that were assured to us by Jesus. But just as assuredly as we experience tribulation, we trust in the promises that He "has overcome the world".
The last month has definitely been a challenging one for me. I feel as though I have been hit by some severe blows, and each time I pick myself up, I get knocked down again. But, I'm finding that in the picking up of myself, I am growing stronger. I continually return to the foot of the cross for grace and mercy, seeking wisdom and hope.
More than once I've cried myself to sleep; my eyes blurred by tears, my mind blurred by hopelessness. It's hard to see the light at the end of the tunnel, especially when the tunnel just seems to be getting longer and darker.
Please keep my family in your prayers! The Enemy is definitely attacking and re-attacking. My parents are dealing with multiple stressful situations, and also learning how to lead and pastor a church. (for more specific prayer points please visit my mom's blog: www.imghanaadopt.blogspot.com)
I am also dealing with the many stresses of not having a job, but having just acquired a car (plus insurance and maintenance fees!). I am waiting to hear back from Toni&Guy Hairdressing Academy about the full-ride scholarship that I applied for, and trying not to get anxious about it. I really don't know what I will do if I do not receive the scholarship (a $17,000 loan isn't really an option for me at this point).
I know that God is sovereign, and that He sees "the big picture", but at times I feel so discouraged and alone. I also know that my feelings, though real, do not define reality. I'm holding on (sometimes just barely) to His promises.

And I believe, that He is able to do abundantly more than I could ever ask or imagine. I just have to keep reminding myself. :)

"And, we know that HOPE does NOT disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out by the Holy Spirit who's been given to us."

"My God shall supply all my needs according to His glorious riches in Christ Jesus our Lord."

Saturday, 2 January 2010


Some may wonder what has taken the place of my writing in the last few months. Why I haven't penned the many thoughts that fill my head. Well... sometimes a heart cannot put into words all that is happening. Sometimes circumstances call for a season of silence.

The last several months have proven to be (to some degree) that season, especially the last few weeks. There have been many mornings that I've woken up to mascara stains on my pillow case due to crying myself to sleep. More than one night have I fallen asleep to the plaguing questions of my mind. "God, why is this happening?" "I don't understand. What I am doing here?" But each question was answered with grace. The grip of grace. The kind of grace that makes a dead child sit up in a casket and speak. The kind of grace that isn't seen as heavenly affirmation in spite of sin, but as Holy conviction that leads to right living. That grace. God's taught me a lot about that kind of grace over the last year.
Like in early May, when the most insane circumstances hit my family like a gun shot in dark. It was the grip of grace that allowed us to love despite lies, to forgive despite deep hurt, and see hope even when it none of it made sense.
Or in July, when the things I had planned on fell through. And every attempt I made seemed to come back void. It was graced that carried me through confusion.
In August is was grace that showed me beauty for ashes, and revealed to me that promises really are fulfilled.
In Sept grace was there to move my family to the Island, and me to Bellingham. It was there to sustain my amazing Papa to follow the dreams that God had placed in his heart.
Grace revealed itself once again in December, when all that I had been hoping and planning for was suddenly lost and gone in a moment's notice. That's when the questions began. And that's when grace answered them.
December 28 is when God spoke to me about the grip of grace. It was that day, that i recognized the power of the grace that I had witnessed the whole year.
Grace. It's not a touch. It's not a pat on the back. It's not apathetic or complacent. It's total favor merited to someone totally undeserving. That's the grip of grace. That's what has met me in the silence. That's what I look forward to seeing in the year to come.

Bring it on!