Thursday, February 25, 2010

Just A Reminder....

I was reading and came across this quote...I hope you read it and are reminded of God's intense love for you. A love taller than the highest mountain, deeper than any ocean, as far as the east is from the west. A love that forgives you no matter what you do, and is there to not only pick you up, but help you piece everything back together again. It's a love that wants to rejoice in your triumphs and comfort you through your sorrows. A love that to us, is so far from what we are, that we can't even comprehend it. Be reminded as you read that there is a God who loves you far more than you can ever imagine and if you don't already know Him, He is anxiously waiting to know you. All you have to do is invite Him in.

Everyone longs to give themselves completely to someone--to have a deep soul relationship with another, to be loved thoroughly and exclusively. But God, to a Christian says, "No, not until you are satisfied, fulfilled and content with being loved by Me alone. I love you my child. And until you discover that only in Me is your satisfaction to be found, You will not be united with another until you are united with Me... exclusive of anyone or anything else, exclusive of any other desires or longings. I want you to stop planning, stop wishing, and allow Me to give you the most thrilling plan existing... one you can't imagine. I want you to have the best! Please allow me to bring it to you. You just keep watching Me, expecting the greatest things. Keep experiencing that satisfaction knowing that I Am. Keep listening and learning the things I tell you. YOU JUST WAIT! That's all. Don't be anxious, don't worry. Don't look around at the things other's have gotten or that I have given them. Don't look at the things you think you want. You just keep looking off and away up to Me, or you'll miss what I want to show you. And then, when you're ready, I'll surprise you with a love far more wonderful than any you would ever dream. You see, until you are ready and until the one I have for you is ready (for I am working even at this very minute to have both of you ready at the same time), until you both are satisfied exclusively with Me and the life I prepared for you, you won't be able to experience the love that exemplifies your relationship with Me... and thus, the perfect love. And dear one, I want you to have this most wonderful love. I want you to see in the flesh a picture of your relationship with Me and to enjoy materially and concretely the everlasting union of beauty and perfection and the love that I offer you with Myself. Know that I love you utterly. I am God Almighty. Believe it and be satisfied.




TJ-this made me think of you because we have been through similar circumstances...just keep doing what you are doing and looking up...He is already blessing you for your obedience and I know He has great things in store for your future. Even for the short amount of time I have known you, I have been blessed.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Simple

It's been a while since my last post...I feel like that's how I start most of my posts on here! I always vow to do better and then life gets busy. And I get lazy. Anyways I was looking at my friend Jenn's blog and she does something called The Simple Woman's Daybook. If you go to this blog you can get more info on it. Basically people can copy a series of open ended questions and it gives you something to talk about on your blog! Good for days like today when I don't feel like coming up with something on my own :) Here it goes....


Outside my window...a cloudy, gray and rainy sky...yuck!

I am thinking...about how thankful I am to have a new job! And how now I suddenly want a new car because of it.

I am thankful for..well I guess I just answered this...but I am thankful for my job! And a warm house, clothes to wear, wonderful friends and an almighty God to serve.

From the kitchen...well I don't cook so there's not much coming from my kitchen!

I am wearing...jeans, gray New Balance sneakers, gray turtleneck, and red Polo sweater, which is all topped off with a plaid black, white and red headband.

I am creating...a new blog post of course! I also am in the midst of painting a picture frame for a friend in Guatemala and a plaque for the girl I sponsor. When I finish it will be pink with a white trim, green polka dots and her name on it. I can't wait to finish and post a pic!

I am going...no where tonight-it is too nasty outside. I just want pjs and my bed and my book.

I am reading...The Godmother. Got it at Costco but it has turned out to be a great book thus far!

I am hoping...for warm weather to be here soon. VERY soon.

I am hearing...mom feeding the dogs, a TV and some music.

Around the house...it is very clean! I spent all day doing laundry, dishes, dusting, vacuuming, and cleaning. Now it is sparkling clean.

One of my favorite things...the beach! I can't get it off my mind since it's getting so close to spring.

A few plans for the rest of the week:finish painting my gifts for friends, start the 2nd series of Spanish cds, go to the gym every day, and hopefully start my job!

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

20 Things About 2009

I saw this on Faith's blog and thought I'd fill you in on my last year. A little late, but better than never!


1. What did you do in 2009 that you had never done before?
Went on a mission trip tp Guatemala! Lived for the Lord like never before, & led a Bible study.


2. Did you keep your New Year's Resolutions and will you make more for next year?
I don't remember making any resolutions last year except to lose weight, and yes I did that. I lost 30 pounds in '09!


3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Yes, my best friend gave birth on October 23 to my sweet godaughter Jeanie.



4. Did anyone close to you die?
No. What a nice break....



5. What places have you visited?
Atlanta, Philadelphia, Sanibel Island, Virginia Beach, Savannah, Boone, Guatemala.












6. What would you like to have in 2010 that you lacked in 2009?
A home for me in Guatemala. A man who loves me, but loves Jesus even more. A stronger passion for my Savior and a peace and joy despite the circumstances that may arise.



7. What date from 2009 will remain etched in your memory and why?
July 16, when I felt the Lord speak and tell me that I was going to serve in Guatemala.
I experienced him more that day than ever before, in a way that I never had. It was an overwhelming, consuming presence of the Lord that completely changed my life.



8. What was your biggest achievement this year?
Grew closer to my family, gained some real friends, and learned to be content in waiting on God.





9. Did you suffer illness or injury?
No, I stayed pretty healthy this year minus a little bump there at the end. 2010 will answer some questions but I am confident it is all going to be ok because God is in control!





10. What was the best thing you bought?




My Longchamp bag!

11. Where did most of your money go?
That's a great question! School, travel, and then I am not sure!

12. What song will always remind you of 2009?
Hmm...Set The World on Fire by Britt Nicole. And anything by Hillsong because I just really learned who they were in 2009 and am obsessed!

13. What do you wish you would have done more of?
Spent more in depth time in the Word and with my Jesus, listened more and spoke less, spent less money, and avoided relationships that I knew better about.

14. What do you wish you would have done less of?
Slept and been lazy!

15. What was your favorite TV program?
So many! The Office, Project Runway, Real Housewives (all of them), Desperate Housewives, Grey's Anatomy, American Idol, The Bachelor.....I think that's it.

16. What was the best book you read this year?
Dear John. Such a great love story! And now it's a movie and I can't wait to see it! And the Twilight series.

17. What was your favorite film of the year?
Um...I can't remember all that I saw in 2009 but maybe The Blindside? I really don't know about this one...I can't remember!

18. What did you do on your birthday and how old were you?
I turned 24 this year. I had a party at the Ballantyne Resort with about 10 of my close friends. We lounged on the roof top pool all day and then headed downtown for the night. Kaylen came in from Atlanta, and Nick came from Miami. It was a really fun time and we have some great memories from that weekend we can still laugh about.

19. What political issue stirred you the most?
What didn't? I can't find a single issue that I agree with our current President about so that caused quite a lot of stirring the entire eyar!

20. Who was the best new person you met?
I met a whole new group of friends through my church and my Home Fellowship Group. Grace and I grew up knowing who each other were but we were never friends. We "met" this year as well as Jennifer Bridges who has become a sweet friend. And I also met a new family in Guatemala of about 500 kids that I ADORE!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

YES!

The whole point of this trip was of course to see the children, but I had an alterior motive as well. I was determined to get an answer while I was here, either yes or no, as to whether or not I could move here. I spent week 1 seeking God, praying, and waiting for Him to speak. I didn't want to make any sudden decisions, although this is something I've been praying about for 6 months now. Papi gave his testimony during week 1 and at the very end said, "We don't need money, what we need here is staff." It sent me to my room saying, "Ok God, is that you? Is that you whispering to me to move?" I continued to pray and spoke to a few of my friends here. (Yes, some of the kids have become actual friends to me by now. They are my age, or close to it, and I love them to pieces. I wish I could bring them all home with me.) I told one of them that I was wanting to talk to Papi but that he intimidates me. He said, "Let me guess, you want to move here. I can see it in your eyes. You want to be here." I got chills. Then we had church that night. As I was sitting with Gabby and some of the other girls, Chus walks in and whispers "You'll be good here." MAJOR chills. That's the exact thing that Jeremy said to me during my last trip here. Again I asked, God is that you?

I emailed Papi yesterday. He is still on his vacation but I could not leave here without an answer. I poured my heart out to him and told him that there is no where else in this world I want to be than here. I received an email back a hour later that said, "Nothing would give me more pleasure. Come." I welled up with tears the moment I read it. God is so loving. He knows my desires, my heart, and CARES. Again I can testify that He WILL give you the desires of your heart when it aligns with His will. His good, pleasing and perfect will. I am so blessed to serve such an amazing, caring, loving God. I am nothing and He is SO big, yet He cares about ME. That changes my life....

Thank you, every one of you, who has prayed for me during this trip. I could feel your prayers and strength while I was here. My HFG-You are more amazing than words can say. I know that the Lord put me in your group and in your lives so that you could be the amazing examples of the church and what God's love is really like. Your support is appreciated from the very depths of my heart. I could never do enough to repay all of you. Thank you for pouring into me, pressing in, and being living testimonies of the amazing, beautiful God that we serve. You are why I am where I am today. Thank you!!

I Could Fly

Today is the most dreaded day of the year...and it's only January 9th! I am leaving Guatemala and all my sweet babies today. My heart breaks when I leave this place. I get a sick feeling in my stomach. I really do leave a piece of me here and it's just not the same until I return. I love these kids like they are my own. I want to see them succeed, to be ambassadors of the Lord, to do well in school, and to grow up to be strong Christian adults. I feel a sense of protection over them and would do anything for any single one of them and I truly mean that with every ounce of who I am. I got to know a few more of the older boys, some my age, while I was here. What remarkable young men. Gringo boys-you have your work cut out for ya!

I told Karla yesterday that I am her new sponsor. Karla is 8 and such a joy to be around. A little fussy if she doesn't get her way, but that's to be expected I guess. She is a leader among the girls her age and I am so proud of her. When I told her she got the biggest grin on her face and gave me a huge hug. It's the best feeling in the world. Let the shopping begin! We had a sleepover last night in my room. Typical girl stuff-painted nails, did makeup and hair, listened to music, but what happened next is the very reason I love this place. Karla took out my hair dryer which provided an HOUR of entertainment. Her and Gustavo (he's 3 or 4) spent an hour putting the dryer on eachother, drying their shoes and putting them on to feel the warmth, up their shirts, pants, pretty much everywhere. It was hilarious. Such a simple thing was the highlight of the night. It made me think about my own life. What simple pleasures am I missing out on enjoying every day? It humbles me every single time.

I sit here and I am packed and ready to load up. I am avoiding going outside because I know when I do I will have to start fighting back the tears. I always promise not to cry because the kids see gringo people cry all the time. I don't want to be that way. The boys told me they will laugh at me and I will lose my cool status if I cry so I really can't have that! :)

At least I have some awesome new music on my computer to listen to on the way home! Roberto put a ton of new songs on here for me-even country which made my day. No one here likes country but he does..I have a new best friend. He also gave me a ton of new Christian bands I had never heard of. Download these if you like good music--Jump 5, RK, Mosquito Farm, Starfield, Sonic Flood, Eleventyseven, Stellar Kart, KJ52. Maybe I am just behind times and yall already know about these. If so, forgive my lack of taste in music!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Willy Nilly


God is so faithful. He is so consistent and truly does care aboout our desires. He WILL give you the desires of your heart! I am in tears as I write this post because it's probably the most special to me.

When I got here all of the boys were quick to give me hugs, ask how I have been and then wanted to ask how I was doing since Willy left. They all knew how much I loved that boy and how special our relationship was. To me, that means so much-that even they could see it. Little did I know what they were up to! Some of the older boys kept telling me Willy would be at church Sunday, but I didn't want to get my hopes up. I just tried not to think about it. But in my bed at night I was praying that I would get to see my sweet boy. That has been one of the deep desires of my heart since I stepped foot on Guatemalan ground.

Sunday I was lined up with some of the kids waiting to go into church. Chus walks up to me and says, "Aren't you excited your boy came today?" I just laughed because I thought he was joking and said "Yea I wish." Then he pointed to a group of 4 boys about 60 feeet away walking towards us. There he was! My boy was here. I sprinted to him and hugged him so hard I probably crushed him. He was a little stand-offish at first. He kept his distance from me a little. We sat together in church, just us, since he isn't allowed to sit with the other boys. While we were singing I could feel him looking at me. God's love just hit me at that moment. Was this really happening?? His love is so overwhelming to me and I began to cry. As discreetly as possible I may add, because the boys pick on me for being such a crier. Once we sat down Willy grabbed my hand and held it the entire service. Talk about breaking my heart!!!!

After service I walked with him up to my apartment. I made him some food and packed a bag for him with almost all the food I had. There is no telling when he will eat again. We got to spend some time talking and catching up but he had to leave about an hour later. His sisters came and I got to meet them which was awesome. Willy has my heart, that is for sure.

Now listen to this....The boys here know how much I love Willy. They also know that I didn't bring any of his gifts because I didn't think I would be seeing him. Jonathan ran to his room and gave me a sweatshirt to give to Willy. He said "Tell him it's from you. I know you wanted to give him things but you didn't bring them. I know you would have and I know how sad you are that you didn't have anything to give him." Here come the waterworks. I am taken aback by the generosity of kids who have nothing to begin with. I have a hard time comprehending it. They leave me speechless. That's all I really can say....

I am so thankful to serve such a loving, merciful, persistant, gracious, consistent, humble, giving God. A God who cares about ME, little me, and my desires.

Slacker!

I've done a terrible job at blogging while here! Let's see where I left off....New Years Day I think it was. Mami and Papi left that day to go on a little vacation. Someone gave them a week at a spa in Antigua and I am so glad they got to go-they deserve it! All of the days are running together at this point so I can't exactly remember what we did that day. The boys have been playing a lot of soccer which means I have been doing a lot of cheering and watching. (And trying to avoid being hit by the ball which actually seems to happen a lot). Dad texted me and asked me what my goals for this year are.

~ Finish up school and be certified to teach ESL
~ Continue to lose weight-last year I lost 30 lbs-this year I want to lose about 15 more
~ Reduce my 5k time by 8 mins
~ GROW GROW GROW in my walk with the Lord and pursue Him EVERY SINGLE DAY
~ Find a steady career
~ If this is the Lord's will for me to be here, which I am certain it is, raise my support and head on down!

Disclaimer: Those were in no particular order...

I am ready for a New Year and a new me. I don't believe in New Year's resolutions...I think people make them and know in the back of their mind they will be broken. The gym and diet industry makes the most profit at the beginning of the year but I don't see that many people losing weight, do you? Speaking of weight, I am SO proud of my sweet friend Grace right now! We started Weight Watchers back around Thanksgiving, set our goals, and said we would hold each other accountable. I am happy to report that she has reached her 1st goal!!! She has lost 20 POUNDS! That's such an acomplishment! YOU GO GIRL!

Quote of the day