Friday, October 30, 2009
It is just that the support continues to come from people I barely know, or only briefly met...as well as from people I have know in my past and people I know now, and everyday it is a joy to watch God move His people into action!
Like I said in my last post, I am just so thankful for each member of my Support Team and their role in building God's Kingdom in Italy! It is such an honor to have God and His People provide for all my needs!
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Today was one of my happiest days thus far in my support raising!(Thanks to all of you who were praying today, God answered your prayer!!!) Today was a crazy day...it should have been a super smooth day, but nothing timing wise seemed to be working the way I thought it should. However when I finally got to sit down spend sometime with Jesus and rest in Him things seemed to get less stressful. (go figure) Then I turned on my computer and found I had a Facebook message from one of my High School Students letting me know that they would like to support me monthly! I almost cried, joyfully, but still tears! (I am my mother's daughter)I have longed for people from my church, my community, my past of all generations and church backgrounds to join my support team. Not because I want their money, but because I really want them to be involved in the work that I will get to be a part of in Rome, I want them to feel connected to God's Kingdom work around the world! More than any other people group I had prayed for was that my students past and present would one day join my support team, and that we would get to join in ministry together! God started to answer that prayer today! And I was truly blesses by it. It was such an affirmation and joy to have them join my team!
On top of that I also got a lot more new supporters this week and a few the week before. I also get to go to Felton Presbyterian on Sunday and invite even more people to catch the vision God has laid on my heart for the people of Rome.
I go to bed tonight with a heart that is full of joy and a life that is blessed to be on this amazing adventure with God! I am struck again and again just how cool it is to live the life God created me to live, and that He desires for me to be part of His plan to redeem His creation. Friends God IS GOOD!
Monday, October 26, 2009
The past few months have been filled with all sorts of stuff; handing over the youth ministry programs at Felton Bible Church to great new volunteers, training and equipping student leaders, packing up my office at church, ReachGlobal training and support team visits. In September I finished my final online training course in preparation for Pre-Field Training. I just attended Pre-Field training October 7-15 in Apple Valley,MN and visited my old church family at Elim Mission Church in Cokato, MN, in Nov. I will attend Language Acquisition School for two weeks and then my training will be complete!
God has continued to open up opportunities for me to share with churches and individuals what He has called me to in Rome as well as the need there for the Gospel. I continue to be blessed each and every time I get the opportunity to share how God is at work in our lives!
Next Sunday, I get to share with the folks at Felton Presbyterian Church about my road to Rome and invite them to join me in ministry there. I always enjoy sharing about my upcoming journey to Rome, so let me know if you'd like to get together to hear more of the details, I'd love it!
These words from the Apostle Paul, "And my God will supply every need of yours according to his riches in Glory in Christ Jesus. To our God and Father be glory forever and ever. Amen." Philippians 4:19-20 (ESV). have fresh and deeper meaning as I continue to get support reports from ReachGlobal. I am truly learning what it means for God to supply every need according to His glorious riches ... as generous financial support arrives every day from individuals and churches that God has called to give towards His work in Italy. I know that it is only through His provision, and the generosity and obedience of His people, that my needs are being met.
I am excited to tell you that as of today my monthly support $6295 a month is now 33% met and continues to grow daily and my start up cost $19,000 is over 60% raised because of the support of obedient faithful supporters like you!
I have a tentative departure date of January 2010. I believe this is the departure date God has in mind for me! All my training will be complete as of November 20th, so what remains is for my support needs to be met. I am particularly motivated to arrive in Italy in January because it is so much cheaper to travel to Italy in the winter months rather than during the high tourist season. In recent months the Rome City Team has grown, but there is a great need for laborers. Could it be that God is calling you to join Him in His work in Italy by becoming a part of my financial support team?
As you consider partnering with me financially, please remember that all contributions are tax deductible and that even though your contributions are given to EFCA, 100% of each gift goes directly to our ministry and living expenses. The EFCA is a member of the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability.
Contributions can be sent by mail to:
Evangelical Free Church of America
901 East 78th Street
Minneapolis, MN 55420
or give online at www.efca.org/give-now. Make checks payable to "Evangelical Free Church of America" and include on the memo line of your check our personal ministry account code: 1671 (please do not include my name).
If God is leading you to support us monthly, it would be helpful for our record keeping if you could drop me an email and let me know. You can contact me at: firstname.lastname@example.org. Even if you plan on beginning your giving at a later date, I am able to count your pledge towards are need. All gifts received now, before we arrive on the field, are applied towards our pre-field training and relocation expense
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
It has been a great week of learning and of meeting with other missionaries to get to know them and the greater need around the planet, but learning can be exhausting. I am no longer used to sitting and learning for 8-9 hours a day. We have covered all sorts of topics and am certain they will come in handy on the field.
Tomorrow is my last day of class, and then I am off to see some friends for a few days and then back to my old home and church in Cokato, MN on Sunday to share with the church there about the need in Rome, and the work I will be doing there. Then on Monday I will be home.
Then in the beginning of November I am heading back to Colorado for two weeks for Language Acquisition School.
Thank you all for your prayers. I really do appreciate them, and it has been evident that God has been at work here this week not only in my life but in the life of all of us here. It was so nice to realize this morning that while I was here praying there was a group of people at home and around the world praying for me.
Monday, October 12, 2009
"We are missionaries because God is a missional God. God has a plan that he started in the book in Genesis that He carries on though all of history."
Stated in a slightly different way, "I AM A MISSIONARY BECAUSE GOD HAS A MISSION." Meaning to me that I am joining God in His mission and that in doing so I am allowed to participate with God in the work of building His Kingdom here on earth. It is God's heart to see all people enter into a relationship with Him, to know Jesus as their Lord and Savior.
God's Mission: From Eternity to Eternity is Kingdom Building, which is why it makes sense to leave family and comfort behind to join Him in this work. This has been a comfort to me as I prepare to leave behind the comforts of a culture that I know and a family who loves me, whom I love. To know that, not only can I do this, but was created and called to make disciples of all nations.
I could not acknowledge that truth without thanking God for His kindness that He revealed Himself to us
and that He loved His creation so much that He has a plan to redeem it
and that I have the
to be just a small part of His plan.
My plane to Minnesota was full of anticipation as we lifted off the Chicago runway during the final minutes of the Minnesota Twins Game. There had been an audible groan when the flight crew made the announcement that all electronic devices needed to be off so we could be on our way, and 10 minutes later the plane erupted in cheers of joy as the announcement came over the speakers that the Twins had won the game! I found out later in the night that not only did the Twins win, the Vikings (that is football for those of you who don't do sports) and as I sat with my plate of French fries at Denny's the Minnesota Wild (hockey) also took home a win. Not a bad week to be in Minnesota.
You may be wondering why I am in Minnesota. Well if you have been following me on this Road to Rome you will recall that I have taken all sorts of online courses to prepare to live in Rome as a long term missionary. Those online classes are culminating this week in a class here in the Minneapolis. I will be here learning from today till next Thursday. Then Sunday the 18th I have been invited to return to my old home in Cokato, Elim Mission Church to share about my calling and ministry in Rome with the people there. This may be the part of the trip that I am most excited for, as I have not been to Cokato since 1989 age 9. I am excited to return to this little town that holds so many happy memories for me. The church where I first discovered my heart for those around the world who do not have a personal relationship with Jesus Christ as I watched a Compassion Video along with the Youth Group there at the time.
There is a sense of anticipation in the air as I enter into ReachGlobal more completely, now that I have finished up serving at Felton Bible Church. It is like when you know you are going to Disneyland and you just cannot sleep or think of anything else.
Did you know, that in Rome there is a desperate need for the Gospel? There is. Our Director of ReachGlobal told us yesterday that, "Europe is Less than 1% of the population has a relationship with Jesus. My friends that is why I am so excited to go to Italy, so ready to move forward on this Road to Rome. I am so excited to be here in Minnesota this week learning how best to serve as a missionary in Rome. It is so encouraging to be with other people who are learning along side me. To share this part of my journey with others who have also been called to be missionaries around the globe.
There are 16 of us here this week and every Continent represented. Though we are all headed in different directions, all share a passion for sharing the good news of the hope we have in Christ Jesus and the forgiveness he offers to those who have not encountered this truth yet. This common purpose and passion ties us together. One of our assignments this week is to work together as a team to create an event that will allow people to engage with The Great Commission.
We had this event last night, the 16 of us set up an evening that allowed people to move from one continent to another to experience the need in each area of the world, as well as hear some stories of what God is doing in each area. This is the video we shared at our Europe area before sharing a personal story. Then we came together for a time of corporate prayer and of course cookies and ice cream.
That was the end of the day, at the beginning of the day we all got sent to various churches throughout the Minneapolis area, most with an emphasis on one culture or another. The church I got to go to however, was a combination of almost every race and culture. The Sanctuary Covenant Church is a beautiful picture of the variety of people in the Kingdom of God, all coming together to worship. It was a blessing and joy to worship at The Sanctuary.
This morning in Minnesota it looks like this: