Sunday, August 18, 2013

Five Men and Angels

Only one team left, time is going by so fast.  For the past few weeks we have had some amazing people come from different places all over the world to serve and hang out with us. I miss Joy Smith and Nancy, who were here on the last week of July spending endless hours pouring into us and loving on us well. I am so thankful for those beautiful women of God who were like mommas to me while they were here. 
I already miss the San Diego team and they just left yesterday! They were amazing men and women of God, full of fire, love and joy! It has been amazing just being able to see them all everyday and hanging out. We are definitely going to be friends for a long time, and I already want to plan a trip to go visit them!
I am so grateful to still have Iris, Harvest School, team here!  I am honored to serve with them and as I learn about them and hear some of the testimonies I am undone by the goodness of God. I was just hanging out with the team from Iris as they allowed me to sit with them as a couple team members shared their testimonies and the presence of God is so thick on me still, my heart is beating out of my chest with love for Jesus.
I just want to say thank you so much to all of you who put your lives on hold to come and serve Kenya! What you have done here has been awesome and the seeds you have sown will reap a bountiful harvest! I love you all!

Amazing Story
A few of days ago all of us sat in our prayer room located above the brothel, worshiping and praying and just drawing closer to Jesus. During this time one of the girls from Iris team saw what looked to be like a big bright, white light come into the room. She said that it came and sat right in the middle of the room and then it suddenly started flowing and going out of the open door in the room. After a couple hours Bre , another missionary here, walked into the room and began to share with us an amazing story.  She said that as she arrived five men were standing right underneath our door staring up in awe. She ended up talking with them and found out that they were pimps/ johns and that they were just walking by on their way home after their busy night of work.  They planned on just passing by but as they looked up at our open door and heard the music they saw what looked to be light flowing from the room. Mesmerized by the light they stayed watching until suddenly they watched as the light flowed down to them and suddenly became big spiritual beings glowing white, and these beings began to tell them about the love of God! The angels began to tell them about how much God loves them and that God wasn’t looking at all their sin but that He wants them just as they are! The men told Bre that they never knew all those things about God and they had no idea how much He loved them! Even as they finally began to walk away they continued to make comments like, “Did you see how big they were!” and “I had no idea God was so good!”

That’s one way to stop prostitution! Worship and let the angels do the ministering! Hahaha! I am so filled with joy and so in awe as I think about how much bigger God is than my own mind can conceive! God totally amazes me! Thank you Daddy God for sending your angels to minister your goodness to those men! Thank you Daddy God for their lives! I can only imagine the party in heaven that happened as those five pimps confessed the goodness of God! WOOOOOHOOOOOO!

Friday, August 9, 2013

Children of Africa

Radiant Joy
Yesterday as I walked hand and hand with a little girl I was amazed by her, simply by her positivity.  Even as we passed by her tiny home made of clay and tin she continued to shine with radiant joy. She was so full of life and personality, telling us that she is Christian and loves God. Even as she walked with tattered clothes, most likely starving, and with the stress of living a life in dire poverty  over her head she continued to almost yell out, “Oh how wonderful!,” or “Oh how great!”, at the end of each comment or sentence I said. She walked with a bounce and held my hand introducing me to her village. When I asked her name she said, “My name is Purity, and I am pure in heart!” I was encouraged just by her presence and I continue to wonder what life would be like if I chose to walk with radiant joy in all my sufferings, and in child-like faith no matter what I faced each day. Jesus help me be like a child.

Always Thankful
A couple days ago Kylee and I sat with four beautiful children having a picnic in the dirt. It all started when we went to their house to hang out and ended up walking in on pain, as expected. The baby sat crying, sweating, sick, and completely neglected for hours in his own poop. Instantly we bathed him, changed him, and comforted him as the other two children, and a friend ran home hearing our voices. After a while of watching the kids play and taking care of the baby the little boy shyly, with his hands covering his face asked us for food having learned that we usually feed them when we come. I don’t feed every child that asks for food but this was a different case. I knew him and his living conditions.  I knew the neglect, and the pain. I knew that they often don’t eat at all, and they never have asked for food themselves, apart from mom. So we took the baby and went out to fetch some lunch. When we returned the children were filled with joy, so excited to eat. They ran to grab plates and we quickly poured out the beans and ugali on two plates seeing how frantic they were to eat.  But this was the part I was overcome by, the three children sat there and each said a prayer before any of them ate a bite. These are children! They know without a doubt that God is the one that provides all they receive, and there is no way they will not thank Him! As soon as the last one said their prayer they dug in, fisting handfuls of beans and ugali into their mouths. They ate so much and so fast I was amazed and filled with compassion.

I walk with children and learn how to be joyful in suffering.  I sit and learn from babies how to be grateful! I am overcome by the goodness of God for his children and I am so thankful for His hand on their lives!

Thursday, August 1, 2013

King Of Justice

For years I have asked Jesus two questions- “What are you thinking about?” and “What are you doing?” without ever truly getting an answer.  I’m now beginning to believe it’s because I honestly wasn't ready to know the answers to those very intimate questions. These questions, that I felt to be simple, were questions that would reveal the depth and core of Jesus’ heart, and although I thought my heart was pure in seeking the answers I understand now that all I was looking for was self gain. I truly just wanted to know what He was thinking about in terms of me and what he was doing in terms of me.

Jesus stirred those questions in my heart years ago as he began to take me on a journey of truly knowing his heart. Little did I know what I was really asking for and little did I know the cost it would take to know the most vulnerable places of his heart. If you ask anything in His name He will give it to you. Jesus was serious when he said this and even though the answer may not come immediately that doesn't means it’s not still coming. Jesus had heard my cry to know him more intimately, but going deeper and into that very real and vulnerable place with Jesus would cost me something.  To ask Jesus the deep things on his heart, I had to be willing to take my focus off of myself and take time to choose to see what He sees. I had to be willing to receive His answers even if it’s not what I had expected.

 ‘What is Jesus thinking about?’ I found this answer as I began to walk with open eyes, choosing to go to those places with Him and not only seeing the pain and suffering but allowing my heart to feel the pain also.  ‘What is Jesus doing?’ He is standing by the starving boy sent out to beg in the streets. He is holding the mamma as she weeps with bitter tears at her lack to care for her family. He is carrying the cripple man crawling in the dirt, and wiping away the tears of the orphans unable to sleep at night. I have learned that Jesus is found in the mists of pain eagerly waiting for US to choose to be His hands and feet. Jesus is standing close by those who are brokenhearted, suffering, mourning, and hurting and He is saying, I love all of my sheep but I will go searching even if one of them is lost. The question I must ask myself; am I willing to live among pain in order to know Jesus more? Am I willing to be that intimate as to share in the sufferings of His children and feel what His heart feels every day? Am I willing to be a friend to Jesus and stand by Him no matter what situation I face, even if it’s death? Will I deny Jesus to His people or will I speak on His behalf? I have never really thought deeply about what Jesus called me into on that day I chose Him, until now.

 Living here in Africa I have been submerged into what I now believe to be the core of Jesus’ heart. I believe it’s a Holy invitation to be invited to walk among the poor; an invitation that Jesus does not take lightly. I believe to share in the sufferings of God’s children is not something to be overlooked but in fact the center of Jesus’ heart. When you move into a place where you’re laying your own life down for another person that is when you know what Jesus is truly thinking about. I’m ashamed to have lived so long for myself and seeking my own purposes, I honestly didn’t even realize I was until I began serving the least of these and sitting in the dirt among the pain and suffering. If I want to know Jesus more I have to be willing to be a part of what He is doing and choose to follow Him even if that means not living comfortably. I must choose to be the salt and the light to the world and realize that my life isn’t my own anymore. Knowing Jesus and living intimately with Him is going to cost me EVERYTHING, but I will to choose everyday to lay it down! It’s no longer my will, my agenda, my needs, my concerns, my dreams, my struggles but it’s all about Jesus and serving Him.

 “King of Justice(Hebrews 7:2) this is who Jesus is! Jesus was a man born in a village, a carpenter’s son; choosing to live among the people rather than in the riches of a palace. He was a man who came not to be served but to serve and lay down his life for his friends. The one who, “In all their sufferings he also suffered, and personally rescued them.”(Isaiah 63:9) The one God anointed, just as it says “In your majesty, ride out to victory, defending truth, humility, and justice. Go forth to perform awe-inspiring deeds! Your throne, O God, endures forever and ever. You rule with a scepter of Justice. You love justice and hate evil.  Therefore God, your God, has anointed you, pouring out the oil of joy on you more than on anyone else. “(Psalm 45:4, 6-7) And again God said, “Look at my Servant, whom I have chosen. He is my Beloved, who pleases me. I will put my Spirit upon him, and he will proclaim justice to the nations.” (Matthew 12:18) This is who Jesus is and the core of his heart; “He gives justice to the oppressed and food to the hungry. The Lord frees the prisoners. The Lord opens the eyes of the blind. The Lord lifts up those who are weighted down.”(Psalm 146:7-8) Jesus proclaimed, “For, I the Lord, love justice. I hate robbery and wrongdoings. I will faithfully reward my people for their suffering and make an everlasting covenant with them. “(Isaiah 61:8) Jesus was the one who said “Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows. “ (Isaiah 1:17) and again He said “Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.” (James 1:27)

“His rule is built on justice!” (Proverbs 16:12) and If I want to know Him more I must stand up for the injustices of this world and fight for what he is already fighting for!

“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is upon me, for the Lord has anointed me to bring good news to the poor. He has sent me to comfort the brokenhearted and proclaim that captives will be released and prisoners will be freed. He has sent me to tell those who mourn that the time of the Lords favor has come, and with it, the day of God’s anger against their enemies.” Isaiah 61:1-2