Sunday, May 30, 2010

Lean on Me

This past week has been amazing. We have gone rock climbing, done high ropes, gone hiking, and gotten to know each other. I have absolutely pushed my limits. I couldn't convince myself to do the high ropes night swing, but I did do a bit of rock climbing. I maybe climbed 3 feet in the air. Jonathan has a wonderfully funny video of will all enjoy it very much.

We have 2 things for us here. The Lord and each other. There is no TV, rarely Internet, no cell phones, no ac, and no hot water. There are none of the basic comforts that we have in America, but I am loving it. It is so awesome to have the time and opportunity to rely solely on my brothers and sisters and my Father.

Camp started yesterday. I was so excited to meet my kids and we were having worship and a staff meeting when Clayton (a 250 pound man) decided it would be a good idea to tackle me. I don't really remember why he did, but I'm sure I was antagonizing him. Either way, he dislocated my jaw and gave me a concussion. Luckily, I don't remember anything from yesterday. I hear that I sleep all day and would occasionally awake to cry, puke, and yell at people. What a wonderful day. I am feeling much better today, still having some memory issues and a bit woozy, but I am so excited to bond with my campers!

This week has been so great and ya'll have made it better with all the emails and text messages. thanks so much for all of those and please keep them coming, they mean a whole lot to me! For now, I am off to teach my skill...I don't really remember what it is...but I'm sure someone will help keep me in check until my memory comes back! love ya'll!

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Home is whenever I am with You

So I have been in Africa for over a week now and I cannot even explain how I am feeling. I feel more at home here than I ever have anywhere else. As many of you know, Africa is where the Lord first called me by name and asked me to follow Him. The only explanation I have for my ease here is that I am, in fact, home.

We have spent this week getting to know out staff and getting ready for the kids to come. They come tomorrow! We spent all day today decoration our cabins and they look great and I am so excited for my Meru girls to arrive!!

The place where we are staying is so secluded, I almost forget that I am in Africa. It is beautiful here. The skies are bluer, the grasses greener, and the sunshine more radiant. The only thing that reminds me where I am is the drive from Lukenya to Nairobi and seeing officers with AK-47s across their chests. It is insane how safe I feel, though.

As a lot of you know, I have had no idea where to go with my life. I have been in consistent prayer about it and until now the only thing I have heard from the Lord was "patience." I now know why He was saying that. I am indeed home. I have spoken with the leadership team a bit and prayed about it and now we are all in consistent prayer and asking the Lord if He wants me to stay. We believe He does. Please be in prayer about this. No final decision has been made and will not be made until August, but the leadership team and I are leaning towards my return for a more permanent stay.

I love all of you and miss everyone so much. I wish more than anything that my family and dear friends could be on this amazing journey with me, you would all love it. I am praying for each and every one of you and please keep my staff and I in your prayers as well.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Here's My Life

So I don't have anything too much different to say than my last post, but I thought I should write a little something since I may not have any access to my blog while I am in Kenya.

The "theme" of my summer is definitely going to be faith. I have made it a point to wake up every morning and hand my life over to the Lord because I am tired. One thing that I have learned over the past 22 years is that I really suck at controlling my life. I pick the wrong guys, the wrong places to go, the wrong people to hang out with, and inevitably, the wrong path. Luckily, I don't have to worry about that any more. Even in these 2 short weeks that I have remained disciplined each morning in denying myself, I have seen a drastic change. From my love life, to my future plans and Africa, there is nothing else I can do. I have done my absolute best to put myself in a place where I have choices that will allow me to glorify Him, now it is the Lord that will take the reigns and take me to the place where I can best serve Him.

People keep asking me if I am scared. I keep getting reminded not only of the safety issues in Africa, but also of change. I am constantly reminded that I am leaving for 3 months while all of my closest friends are staying together and growing in Christ together. So I guess what they are really wanting to know is if I am scared to lose the bonds between certain people and myself. The answer to that is yes, I am terrified. I am terrified that when we all get back into the real world, we will not recognize each other. I am terrified that we are leaving things unsaid because we assume we will see each other again. I am terrified that the Lord will ask me to stay in Africa (hence my indecisiveness). But most of all, I am terrified that we will remain unchanged.

As a lot of you know, my sister is in the Peace Corps. She had to deal with the same issues before she left....however her situation was more legit and dramatic because she was leaving for 2 years, not just 3 months. But she went anyways. And she is seeing changes in herself and in some of the people that she left behind that hurt her. Everyone is growing...separately. But one of the things I admire her the most for is her faith. She left for 2 years. She left her family, her friends, a boy, her car, her house, air conditioning, American name it, she left it behind. She had the strength to do this because she knew it was what she was meant to do. She was made and created to serve and that is exactly what she is doing.

So...yes, I am scared. Not for my safety, but for my heart...for all of our hearts. But I know that I am on the right path. I am serving the Lord, my can I go wrong? I just pray that we all remember each other and continue to pray for each other. I also pray that we all allow ourselves to be transformed again and again to better serve our matter the cost.

Proverbs 27:17

As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


Imani is faith in Swahili. Faith is the most important aspect of our relationship with Jesus Christ, and unfortunately it is easily shaken. When our faith is shaken, the pain is almost unbearable and for how ever long it lasts, we feel alone.

I (being a normal 22 year old girl) am no stranger to heartache and confusion, and this year has been no different. The only difference has been how I handle the daily life of a young woman in her early twenties. This time around I have an ally. I have a body guard, a protector, a healer, a best friend, and a father.

It has been hard because I almost expected things to be easier. I thought because I have the Lord in my heart that I wouldn't hurt or cry or feel alone. I guess I was listening to Joel Osteen a little too much, because that has not been the case. My heart has been broken, my feelings have been hurt, and I have felt alone. This is where faith comes in.

I have to believe and choose to believe that the Lord's hand is in every single aspect of my life and since I believe that I also believe that my life is perfect because it is His. His timing is never wrong and His path is never ever dark. Though this is encouraging, it does not make pain and confusion go away...but He never promised us these things would be easy, He just promised us we would never go through them alone.

Every time I enter a time of confusion or hurt, a part of me is so grateful for it because I know that something great is going to come out of it. I also have become well aware that it is the time of anguish that we grow with the Lord the most because we need Him the most.

One of the many things that has always been confusing and painful for me is my future. It shakes my faith more than anything else in the world. Where am I going to live? Grad school or job? Jackson or Rome? Is he the right one? All of these thoughts consistently consume my prayers and I have been lucky because through this sinful behavior, the Lord has taught me to be faithful and taught me how to pray.

The biggest issues I am dealing with right now are Africa and Jackson. I am going to Africa, nothing and no one could keep me here, but a long with that comes the $4,000 cost. I am a little over halfway and I leave in 10 days. I need your prayers.

Jackson is also consistently in my prayers. I have had opportunities to do long term mission work, work with campus ministries, get a normal job, or go to Jackson. RTS has gone from my #1 choice to my last choice and back to my #1 choice. People and future plans have never confused me so much in my entire life.

I need your prayers. Not that I find $1,500 on the street or that one choice is made much more clear than the others, but for Faith. I need to to pray that no matter what happens I have faith in the Lord. I need your to pray that I rely on him solely to direct me to the right place and I need you to pray that I can completely surrender any brokenness to the one being that can heal it.

Faith. Imani. It alone can will keep you going.

(I John 5:4) For whatever is born of God overcomes the world. This is the victory that has overcome the world: your faith.