Fuego de Dios...As you draw closwer to God, the fire gets hot. He refines you. It's hard. Don't seek easy and comfortable, it's not as incredible. As you draw closer to God, you find out he is and ALL CONSUMING FIRE. The only reason to exist is to glorify God and to have communion with Him forever. God is giving gems and jewels to live the best life that I can in my own unique and wonderful way.
Discipling the Nations through the New Generation
This class focused on learning that there are so many areas of society right in our own cities that need to be reached. We can cross social barriers, bringing Christ to them. Urban Tribes were the most interesting to me. The kids seek identity and acceptance, which is something that they can only find fully in the Lord. And this was a class focused on getting to know kids, relating to them, gaining their trust, and just reaffirming who they are. The very things that people all over the world are doing in and out of ministry.
We had a class called Levels of Development and Strategy that talked about Child development and at what ages things happen, what affects them for life, and how to best affirm who they are at every stage of their life. Very enlightening.
Sexual Restoration: Reaffirming and healing wounds of sexually abused people of all ages.
ATTRIBUTES OF GOD (finally, someone came and actually talked about attributes of God, not just the need to get to know God and that it's found in the Bible (DUH) and guess what, he was from Boulder Colorado, baby).
1. Identity of God:
God is living
God is personal
God is spirit
2. Transcendence of God:
God is infinite
God is eternal
God is unchanging
3. Character of God
God is holy
God is love
God is truth
4. The Perfections of God
God is omnipresent
God is omnipotent
God is omniscient
We incorporate all of this into our lives, and our relationship with Him becomes a journey beyond our understanding.
Shame and Dishonor vs. Glory and Honor
Brought to light all the things in our lives that made us ashamed of who we are, lack of value, or what we do, lots having to do with the way we were raised and the rules our parents had and the friends you had. I have WONDERFUL parents, but i already knew that. This class was taught by the same guy who taught about child development. Parents need to reaffirm their children, show their faults, show their children that they are accepted and valuable, never compare to anyone. The value that parents place on their kids can determine their child's destiny!
A guy from argentina came to talk about missions and how missions can be done anywhere...Missionaries are people who cross barriers...cultural, linguistic, social, economic, geographic. We looked at other religions and their foundations. We looked at ways to impact cultures and the power of world views. If Christians are still holding on to world views then they have not yet been transformed by the Truth of Jesus Christ. We are to lift up the principles of God. Don't be preoccupied with things that don't go against God's Absolute Truths. Be agents of change, show Jesus to everyone in all places in all settings. This is hard, but these nations and communities live in far greater blessing than those that go against principles of God.
Spiritual Warfare: recognizing anything that is your enemy. The church can use the power that raised Christ from the dead!! Make decisions after consulting God. Eve bit the apple because satan told her not to talk to God about it. And the most important thing to remember is....This is a battle that has already been won! Satan keeps trying to take lives from God, and he is succeeding, but Christ won this battle for us, we have to use that power to gain those lives back and to increase the Kingdom of God. There are 3 battle grounds: The Mind, The Mouth, The Heart...And all need to be protected. God gives us full armor for all of those things! We can't win this battle on our own, we need God's power. Eph 6:10-20 speaks of the armor of God: Belt of Truth, Breastplate of Righteousness, Footgear of spreading the Good News, Shield of Faith, Helmet of Salvation, Sword of the Word of God. Go! Fight! Win!
Living in the Truth-What you say has power
Words cause wound, and bring out old wounds...watch what you say.
Also, it is important to SAY the truth, and it will surprise people.
No lying...our culture accepts it. That's BAD.
We reflect God's character in what we say and how we say it.
And our last motivation class was FAITH AND FINANCES...Also known as GIVING.
You won't be able to pay for life with your own strength, you have to use God's power and have faith in that power. What is your character when you have money? when you don't? Does it change when you do? Our security needs to be in God, not in our bank account. Money effects our emotions, attitudes, and our relationships with God. Materialism is strong battle. And the best way to fight it is to give things away. It increases our intimacy with God. And tithing is important. THE most important thing we do with what we earn. It's not "i have to give 10% away of what I earn" but "God is letting me keep 90% of what I made!! how nice of him! it' snot even mine in the first place! And she gave us a long list of symptoms of materialism. The class then had a half hour break where we were to pray about giving something, blessing our classmates. Man was this incredible. The first guy to go felt that God was telling him to give away the only thing he had that he considered valuable....a ski jacket. SO, this gets deep. almost everyone felt that they were to give to him. Even me! He always borrowed my favorite scarf, purple and black checkers, so I gave it to him. Someone else gave him a soccer jersey, a book, a cell phone for his soccer school he's starting, and SOMEONE PAID FOR HIS ENTIRE OUTREACH!! THINK...if he hadn't obeyed God, God may have no blessed him with so much more!! I recieved about book about women in the missions field and the battle fought there, as well as mascara!! Don't know if i told you, but mine fell down the toilet. And it's like $10 here, yuck. Someone gave a video camera, perfume, headphones. It was interesting to see what God has us give, and all had to do with things that were a great part of who we are! To top of this story, we had a secret santa christmas party. I was sad that I had given away my purple scarf. Guess what i get from a girl i don't even know! a purple scarf AND purple earrings!! God is so good! This story is just exciting me so much sitting here. He is so good.
Our last class, which was followed by one of the best barbecue's ever, was on how to do an inductive bible study. Thanks to the navigators I have been doing that for 2 and half years! love it!
And class was done. the being poured into part ended and the time to see it all applied, to let it all manifest itself in me has arrived. Week one and I see the importance of everything I have learned. I see the importance of washing my hands before the Lord DAILY so today's dust doesn't just pile up on top of yesterdays. And once again, the theme, the humbling theme of CHOOSING it all, of making God more important than me, of getting up everymorning for my quiet time (which has now been moved to BEFORE breakfast...gag), of focusing on how to lift up others, when you pray for someone it's hard to criticize their character. You want to stir them up as Joseph put it. And it HAS been hard. The fire is hot here by God. He is refining me. But i cannot even express the ways he has changed me, the habits I have wanted to break for years are now being broken (slowly, but it's happening). Of being filled with energy from the waking moment because the first thing I get to do is spend time in the light of the Lord.
And this week was especially hard and it made me SO homesick. It made me realize so much about my fellow students and urging them to do their best. It's hard to see much of the positive side when everyone is negative and it seems that my journal is full of venting fuming and bitterness relief, followed by quiet time notes, and then the revelations that the holy spirit brings to me to get my eyes off of my surroundings back onto God. It's hard. It's so hard. But I'm glad i'm here. Satan still gets to my same struggles, but i'm learning to battle that and live in my identity of who GOD says I am, not who I think I am. Pride is hard to see, you know. Even low self-esteem is pride. Live one day at a time.
BUT SEEK FIRST HIS KINGDOM AND HIS RIGHTEOUSNESS AND ALL THESE THINGS WILL BE GIVEN TO YOU AS WELL Matthew 6:33
Group unity has been a big problem. We have no time to sit down and talk to each other. And the guys just struggle with their mosquitos and respect.
I did flowers for a wedding...Maia and Beto...thanks Ash for your inspiration, there are pics on facebook if anyone wants to see. I got up at 6 in the morning and did it all. The wedding was a dream...on the beach, no chairs, just sand in the toes.
God has been challenging me to increase my faith. Faith eliminates the pride of human effort because faith is not a deed that we do. Faith exalts what God has done, not what people do. It admits that we can't keep the law or measure up to God's standards. It is based on our relationship with God, not on our performance for God.
My wet suit got stolen too...stealing is the game the Chile plays with itself. I pray it will turn up.
Never decorate cookies for Christmas with 3 year olds, they don't get it. But chocolate no bakes are an international hit!
Question: Will you stumble over the rock? or build your house on it? Jesus is the rock.
Jesus allows us to know God. He is wants makes God understandable, otherwise He is beyond our tiny minds.
2009 was a pivotal year....I graduate from college and life is no longer planned out for me. I stepped out in faith and am finding a new direction.
2010. What do I want to do with this year? It's actually a really long time.
And i'm learning to play guitar. The callous thing is hard because i spend so much time in the pool I have to place twice as long to not undo everything I worked so hard for.
And TRULY love people. Jesus would never fake love anyone. Take genuine interest, dont just be polite. Love them because they too were created in God's image. Love and forgive as Christ does.
Faith and Love are my push right now.
Did you know that 3 is a special number for homesickness? 3 days, 3 weeks, 3 months. This week is the 3 month mark. It's been hard, i just want to say that again. One bad moment for me sent half the week spiraling out of control. But i regained my footing in the end of Romans where it talks about Love. God can guard your life, bring joy. You need his help for you to be able to love Him to your greatest extent! Ask Him to increase your awareness of Him, improve your obedience. psalm 86. Let the spiritual realm of your Holy Spirit be known in my heart andmind. And give me an undivided heart! He can be your strength and your attitude, your words, your love, your example, sustainer, and guiding light. romans 15:2-Please my neighbor for his or her good, not mine; 15:5-seek commin ground. 15:13 As God is giving me encouragement I must also bring the Spirit of Unity that I am looking for. 15:14-Then i'll get the joy and peace because I am trusting in Him. God knows I am capable, complete in knowledge and competent. Then i glory in Jesus Christ. Be refreshed with other believers. AND desire for the peace of God go be with you. Thank God for the grace given to the people around you. And be so glad that it is not with Human words that the gospel is spread.
And i rode a ride last night that is a law suit waiting to happen in the USA. It spins you around, no seat belts, and then kinds shakes when you're at the top of the circle. there'll be a video on facebook for that too I think. And it'll be here all summer ( my summer...yes, I'm sunburned as we speak).
And as I continue my outreach I remind myself that the kingdom of God is POWER, not talk. It has to be lived, not just talked about.