{The choice}

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Its a rainy day. Perfect time to blog. Its been a couple weeks since I have actually blogged on my life here. So here we go. There are less than 50 days until I graduate from the OneThing internship here at International House of Prayer. When they said the last half goes by quicker than first half they were right!

 

With the graduation fast approaching I have found myself trying to come up with what I should do with my time after internship. Ideas ran rampant in my mind, I could start one of the business’s I’ve always wanted to, I could be a nanny in the third richest town in the United States, there are plenty of oppurtunities here to make money and live well. But I didn’t have a peace about any of the things. {Reminds me back in May before I left for internship and I asked God what I would be doing after the internship and I felt like he said you have no idea, well He was right, as always;}{ See that blog entry here;)}.

So the last couple months when I have asked God what after the internship looked like, He didn’t answer the question directly {I think about the bible and when Jesus spoke directly to the people hearts who were asking Him questions, instead of answering question directly}, he instead asked me these two questions repeatedly.

 

‘Can you trust me up to the last minute’

&

‘Can you leave it all behind?’

 

He couldn’t possibly mean it, right? God didn’t actually want me to leave behind everything I had worked so hard for? Right?  {Insert me hoping I was repeatedly feeling the wrong impression} But, Yep. That is exactly what He was asking of me. Apart of my personality, I am one who plans ahead, WAY ahead. It’s a strength I believe the Lord equipped me with. But in our strengths we can sometimes forget our need for the Lord in our daily lives, and life goals because we get so good at doing things for ourselves. God was and is desiring to strip me of that false security. He is asking me to completely depend upon Him. Trusting that He can do far beyond anything I personally could come up with. I am beginning to see little glimpses of Gods provision for me.

And each time they are so divinely orchestrated that there is no denying its from God, I had no play in His plans unfolding except for my weak yes to His questions ‘can you trust me?’.

So here I am halfway across the country literally in the middle of no were, without my car, without a job, without the ‘extras’ that I love having {you know those things that make a home}. Sitting in the prayer room, I find God asking me again. Can you trust me? Can you believe that your prayers move mountains? I find God asking me to spend most of my time doing the opposite of what the world says is wise or smart to do. But to God it is success. It is growing in deeper intimacy with Him, it is partnering with His heart for the nations, it is learning who I was created to be.

Becoming an intercessory missionary was so NOT on my radar of things I wanna do with my life, or had a desire to do until coming here I would get those twinges of ‘this is what I was made for’ when I would be sitting in the prayer, and worshipping. But I would push them away, thinking I couldn’t possibly be called to this. Back in high school I use to make fun of missionaries, thinking it was pointless and now I find myself drawn to not only being a missionary, but an intercessory missionary. Kinda funny when you think about it. {For those wondering what an intercessory missionary is Go HERE for an awesome description written by one here at IHOP-KC}

In this season of my life I feel like the Lord was asking me to lay down my talents, my dreams of starting business’s, traveling the world…To leave behind my family and friends to seek Him even deeper than the last 4+ months. To trust Him. Now its one thing to live on a mission base and spend most of your time praying and worshipping God for 6 months apart of an internship, but to apply it to ‘real life’ and make it your main goal, that is a whole different story.To lay down my strengths before Him and allow Him to arise in His strength in my life for His glory. Its ‘easy’ to get a job, start a business, find a place to stay. But its alot harder {at least for me} to allow all this to be divinely orchestrated by God. And that is just what He is doing. Redefining my definition of success, and continually reminding me at the end of the age ITS ALL ABOUT LOVE.

 

 

L.O.V.E.

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{Gods Provision}

This is an excerpt from my last monthly newsletter I sent out.  I also posted this on facebook. But I thought I would post this here on my blog as well, hopefully it will encourage some of you and give you a little more insight into what living on a mission base looks like.

I thought I would talk a bit about what its like to live here on a mission base. There are over 80 ministries that are apart of/under the International House of Prayer name. They range from an adoption agency,worship teams (keeping the 24/7 worship going), 4 internships, bible university, outreach to feeding & clothing the poor, the list goes on…The enviroment here, is one of pure LOVE. It is not strange or out of place to have a total stranger ask if they could pray for you, or give you something (An hour ago from writing this a fellow intern came to me and told me how she needed a soda because her stomach wasnt feeling good, so she asked a friend for the money to buy one, she then went to the vending machine were a lady(who she didnt know) was standing at the vending machine she had just bought a sprite and asked my friend if she would like iit, my friend said YES of course;). And just 30 mins ago another intern who’s my roommate just had someone come up and gave her $40.The lifestyle here revolves around sermon on the mount {Matthew 5}.Its unlike anything I have ever experienced. Those living here are raising their own support, there are the rare few who receive a work scholarship (typically office jobs).

The main focus of the Mission Base is keeping the 24/7 prayer & worship going. The missionaries here are called ‘intercessory missionaries’ meaning they not only do works of justice but they are coupling it with intercession (a big word for prayer).It’s like a double whammy here, they are not only doing works of justice,but they are also worshipping & praying to God for him to bring justice, and save people (from sex slave trade, addictions…). Its amazing!Gods FAITHFUL provision There is a real grace here at the IHOP-KC for Gods ABUNDANT provision.

I wanted to share with you just some of the amazing testimonies just within my core group. Maybe there are those of you who are needing finances, and/or trusting God to take care of some financial issues. These REAL stories are sure to build faith.So onto the testimonies. Two girls in my core group came to internship without the internship being completely paid off. 2.5 weeks before the money was due our core leader broke the news to them that both of there internships had been TOTALLY paid for. That’s over $8000 between the two of them! Someone, some where decided to pay for them! On top of there internships being paid for people were coming up to them & mailing them hundreds of dollars at a time.Being here at internship I have had two times were people have either come up and given me money or I have found money in my purse that was not there before. One of my roommates Emily was sent over$600 in checks in the mail within one week, 2 weeks after receiving the money her car broke down and she had to take it in the shop, it cost over $400 fix it. Talk about perfect timing! Towards the end of September I felt like the Lord was asking me are you willing leave everything behind? & can you trust me up the last minute? In Him asking these questions I found myself Wondering if I would be able to raise funds as a missionary,have enough food to eat, a place to live…We are all familiar with the list of needs that every human has. That same day I found myself questioning these things I received a package with airborne that I was needing(from a family member who had no knowledge that I needed them), later that day an intern handed me 2 boxes worth of my favorite snack bars, the next day I received $50 in the mail, and the day after that I was given 10 of my favorite yogurts (all which I needed, the cafeteria provides meals but no snacks to interns) Several weeks later I realized I didnt have any winter boots or any waterproof shoes for the rainy days here. Within the week someone here gave me both boots & shoes in almost brand new condition.After these ‘little’ reminders from God I was reminded how faithful He is to His word. He will always watch over me and keep me!God not only provides, but He provides abundantly.Living here on the Mission Base I here stories almost weekly about the amazing provision people expeirence.Everyone has a story here that will amaze you, from people packing up everything they have and moving here without a place to live, to people being given brand new cars, to being given a place to live.My faith is slowly but surely increasing that God is faithful to His promise that I will never be in want. How can it not in an environment like this?

L.O.V.E.
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{The perfect rainy day}

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rain patterning on the window

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new favorite black circle scarf from Forever 21

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yummy tomato soup

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The perfect rainy day

 

What else is one to do on a rainy day in the midwest but grab your umbrella make the 100 yard trek to the cafe, grab a seat at an empty table and flip open your laptop and blog? As far as I am concerned, there’s nothing better. So here I am. Sitting at a table, while the glorious smell of coffee fills my senses, laughter breaks out around me and the door constantly opens and closes to those wanting out of the cool weather. Oh how I love rainy days. Whether in the northwest or the midwest, I am a fan so much so I ask for them. I told my roommate last night I had been praying for a rainy day with thunderstorms so she may wanna carry your umbrella around. Sure enough last night it started raining and today its continuing. Maybe it was suppose to already rain, maybe it wasn’t, all I know is my last day of break is a rainy day. Just how I wanted it 🙂

There is something relaxing about rainy days. You don’t feel guilty for staying inside the cafe all day like you may on a sunny summery day. People tend to congregate in the coffeeshop more on rainy days anyways, which means more oppurtunities for strangers to become friends. For stories to be told, for encouragement to be exchanged, for smiles and glances to be given. Its the best!
Today is my last day of our 5 day break here at the internship. Later today I will be found passenger seat of my roomies car driving down highway passing kansas city downtown to pick up one of our roommates who is just getting back tonight. I agreed to go with her purely because I love mini road trips in the rain. (I told you I like the rain).
Rainy days here aren’t quite like rainy days in the Northwest, for one thing when I look out over the landscape there is no ocean to be seen, and the colors of the leaves do not exude the same vibrant colors as those in the NW. The internet has been finicky to try and post this, but whos to complain. Its raining and I love the people here. Life is beautiful. Today is the perfect rainy day.

 

L.O.V.E.

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{Infinite Ache}

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In coming here to the internship I have been forced to stop watching the television, listening to secular music, and having unlimited internet access. We have no television here in our apartment and do not use the internet or play any secular music in our apartment. I have never felt such peace in a place before, My time is now no longer filled with 3-10 hours a day of watching television & being on the internet. Instead I find myself sitting here in the prayer room listening to the best live worship music for 5-8 hours a day. 2-3 hours classes on Intimacy with God, End Times, and the Book of Joel, 2 church services, and a small group. (Oh yah, I can’t forget interning in the Forerunner Music Marketing Office:) My influences now all revolve around God, Desiring to go deeper into the word of God to discover what real satisfaction and pleasure is,
seeking to know the God who calls himself the I AM.

To live in truth demands I let go of everything distracting and pulling me away from Jesus.
This can hurt. It does hurt. It means those things I so quickly ran to, too numb the pain are either no longer available or much harder to access. Everyones anesthesia of choice is different (Ex:video games, eating too much/or to less of a certain food, cigarettes, drinking, shopping, watching television for extended amounts of time, co-habitation, sexual immorality…) It means instead of the daily/weekly quick fix that so many of us run to when times get hard, when life confronts us with pain and betrayl we must press into the pain and the hurt and allow Holy Spirit to address the root of the issue. Numbing the pain has never and will never work. It is a momentary fix for an eternal desire that can only be satisfied by one. God. So often were afraid to let the real thing satisfy us, because it requires a letting go of what we call ‘good’. But God and God alone defines what is good.

Back up to Adam and Eve quickly. From the very beginning God defined what is good, in Genesis God told Adam and Eve to not eat of one tree in the garden of eden. Then satan came as a cunning serpent to Eve and proposed the lie (that satan tries to convince us of as well) that God is not good and doesnt have
there best interest in mind, and that ultimately she should define what is good by eating from the fruit and determine if its good or not.  The serpent told her that eating from the tree wouldn’t hurt her, but it would in fact make her more like God (she had forgotten that She had been created in His image.) Since the fall of man humans have desired to be the definition of what good is, it revolves around an ever-present self-centeredness that runs rampant especially in the western culture.  People are not motivated by revelation but by the lusts of the flesh, in attempt to justify their own sin and defend their desires. Many people, believers and non-believers have made peace with their sin, settling it in their hearts that it is their portion in life. Jesus never called us to make peace with sin. Scripture clearly states to wage war against sin!

So instead of running around trying to fill that ache by asking, begging people to tell us our identity, to give meaning to our existence. Which no person can do. This is were co-habitation and over attachment to friends lie. Surrounding ourselves with people in the same cycle of continually attempting to fill up on worldly pleasures. That will entertain the sins as we live in them. With all this being said, I want to emphasize that

I do not think watching tv, internet, and having friends is bad! It is when those things take the place of God. When we begin to fill our temple (we were created to be the temple of God) with things that do not reflect Him or His nature. If our waking thoughts are on how we can get our next fix, we need to  re-adjust were our time, effort, money is being spent on. What are we dreaming out? Seriously. What are we willing our minds with in the daytime?  Are we filling our minds with gossip? or are we abiding in the word of God. Let us ask God for the strength to choose His ways, over the so called pleasures of this world. When we allow God to have His way in our lives we are forsaking the temptation to live for ourselves. We begin to treat our time, money, and those around differently. We begin to look at things differently. We begin to understand that Gods leadership is done in love, for love. God desires that we  live in agreement with His heart. Im talking from experience when I say clinging to God and choosing to let Him love me in my weakness is so much better than running to that carton of ice cream or ‘getting away’. Because when I try and numb it I am left with an insatiable hunger that scares me at times because it only grows and I know that it cannot be satisfied yet I still try like so many people do. But whenI am allowing God to fill the ache within me, I go to be bed feeling satisfied and wake up hungry for more of Him, rejoicing in the joy that I feel.

We have an infinite ache within us. How are you filling it?


L.O.V.E.

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{Life as an Intern: Heart}

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“For me to live this is Christ,
For me to die this is my gain”

What do you get when you combine Stanford & Berkley grads, 18 year olds fresh out of high school, and 20 year olds giving up careers and relationships all for the sake of LOVE?
You get the July 2010 OneThing Internship.

Doing this internship has been my way of declaring: “I’ll follow the lamb wherever he leads me, wherever he goes.” It just so happens to be a really, really good song as well 😉 In being here I’ve found myself re-discovering the freedom that loving God brings. That discovery is taking me into the depths of Gods heart towards me which requires I face the condition of my heart, mind, body, spirit (my entire being).  Doing so I’ve found hurt and pain dwelling all to comfortably in my heart. Fears built upon fears, excuses, and denied weakness simmering beneath the surface. Oh human frailty… I found myself disillusioned thinking I had surrendered all there was to surrender by moving halfway across the country for God ‘to return to my first love’. Instead I came to discover that all along I had been standing one foot in the river, one foot on land unsure if sailing away with God would be really what would fill me and the desires of my heart, desperately holding onto a few of my personal treasures physically and within my heart. (Were your heart is, there your treasure lies). Now it didn’t look like desperation outwardly. (Humans have gotten to good in my opinion at masquerading in order to go about the motions of life.) I was continually ‘growing’ and was having breakthroughs in my life, but there were still places with a big “do not disturb” sign on them. In doing this I wasn’t allowing Jesus to free me from the bondage which I accepted as being normal, which ultimately is robbing Him of His  inheritance.

Coming here I realized that I didn’t have an accurate revelation of who God is. My view towards Him was that He was mostly angry, impossible to please, and didn’t really want me to have the desires of my heart. Forgetting that He was the very one who formed my heart in my mothers womb, he created those burning passions and desires in my heart. In the disillusionment of being in pain and hurt I had blamed God  (subconsciously without really realizing it) for the mistakes and sins I committed. I was bitter, confused, and ashamed. But God was innocent in all this. All He had done was try to call me out of sin and rebellion so that I could experience His love in a fuller measure.

Without the INTENTIONAL tending to the flame on the altar of our hearts the love for God will not grow within us.
Cultivating love of JESUS, not building my name, a lifestyle of love vs ministry (self-exhortation). My focus in life has been for the 50-100 years that I will here on earth instead for the age to come. Somehow in the hustle and bustle of  life I forgot that I was created to live for ETERNITY. My time here on earth is but a snippet of time in the grand scale of things. My  focus should not be on self-exhoration (how I can make a name for myself) but rather focused on living as Jesus lived. Walking humbly, to serve those around us before ourselves and loving at all times.

Life here is different in the obvious things like living with 3 other women, listening to live worship 5-8 hours a day, classes, working in a Marketing office for Christian Record Label. I am meeting new people almost everyday all with the same goal, to encounter the King of Kings on a daily basis and to love others. Fears are constantly being faced, so called truths are being questioned, patience is being tried, and love is being put to the test. Yet this has without question been the best (almost) 6 weeks of my life! And each day gets better.

Surrendering has become my favorite thing to do. Doesn’t mean I find it easy, but I know its worth it each and every time.

L.O.V.E.

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