Thursday, May 29, 2014


Part of me is afraid God is going to call me to move to Africa.

This is probably because I have had more time to read the book Kisses from Katie, which is a story of a woman who gave up "everything" to move to Uganda. As I read her words and wrestle through God's commission to give Him everything, I come face-to-face with the number one enemy: FEAR. 

"Fear. It's part of human nature but its not something we got from God. Second Timothy 1:7 says: 'For God has not given us a spirit of fear but of power and of love and of a sound mind.'"

We all feel it, this burden of fear.

"We are afraid of change, of loss, of being hurt. We cling so tightly to what we have because we are afraid of what would happen if we didn't have these things anymore."

We fear what we do not know. We would rather stay in an hurtful situation that is known, than risk going into an unknown situation that would cause us to be uncomfortable. 

"But what if, just beyond that risk, just beyond the fear is a life better than anything we have ever imagined: life to the fullest."

I want that. I want life to its fullest. But to get there, I must move past the fear. My counselor once told me the only way to rid yourself of a fear is to feel it. You must experience it, tolerate it and learn how to live through it. Fears don't go away by avoiding them, but deciding to keep on going despite them. 

"We can let fear of something that really is small compared to the greatness of God cripple us...Life to the fullest exists. It's available. All we have to do is decide to get up and embrace it."

If only I could reach out and tangibly grab this full life. Too often I get stuck in this fear-ridden, comfort-seeking world, and all the expectations it has for me. Ultimately, I believe in a God who is more powerful than any of my fears. Sometimes, I start to think of Uganda and the big bugs, or the language barrier, or where I am going to go to the bathroom. Worry starts to build and I have learned to not dwell in that place of fear. I must quickly squash it with God's promises. God is with me, and goes before me. I will never leave his hands.

Maybe, just maybe, on the other side of my fears and hesitations is the life God has for me. Maybe, once I have the courage to tolerate and break through my fears, I will experience a joy unlike any other.  And maybe one day I will stumble across this full life, this life that God desires for me. 

You are loved.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

We are free!

This post has very little, if nothing directly, to do with Uganda. But I HAVE to share.

My best friend and soul sister Jenny is coming with me to Africa. I am so excited to have her by my side as we travel across the world on this Jesus adventure. Last weekend, she shared her testimony at our church.

It was one of the greatest moments of my life!

(sorry for the poor quality!)

As she mentions in the video, it is crazy that she is up there, sharing in front of hundreds of people. This is just a small part of the great adventure God has had her on these past years. I am incredibly blessed to have been a part of it!

Learning to love Jenny through her darkest hours has been one of the hardest and most rewarding things I have ever done. Not only has God transformed her heart, but He has shown me what it means to love unconditionally, especially when I didn't want too.

God desires to set us free. I have been reading and re-reading Romans 8 lately. It talks all about the Holy Spirit and how with the Spirit, we are free.

14 For those who are led by the Spirit of God are the children of God.15 The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship.[f] And by him we cry, “Abba,[g] Father.”

No longer are we slaves to this world- but we are free to live! I have seen how fear once entrapped Jenny, robbing her of joy and fulfillment. And I have seen how God can break every chain, peeling back each layer of hurt, pain and fear that was preventing her from giving and receiving love. I have witness spiritual healing in an unimaginable way- something you would have to see to believe!

Let us cry out to Him, our true Abba, as He desires to heal and free us!

Praise God.
You are loved!

Sunday, May 4, 2014

God Provides.

Over and over, God provides.

He provides for my little, insignificant needs. He provides the most important fundamental needs, like community and love and unconditional acceptance.

Recently, He has been providing financially. This morning I had the opportunity to share at my church about how He has provided in times of need recently, and how that has encouraged me to give more to Him and His church. Here is a little bit of what I said:

"Over the past two years, I have been giving more regularly. But whenever I was low on funds, I would skip a month or two of my tithe.  Recently, I again felt convicted to become a better steward with my money by starting a budget plan. My sister was visiting a few weeks ago and she helped me set it up. Due to all the traveling, weddings and car payments recently, we realized that I had 42 dollars for the next 10 days when I would get paid again. Than the asked me the dreadful question: did you give your tithe for this paycheck. “No….But can’t I just starting giving my tithe next month??” Luckily, my sister and my two good friends held me accountable. So that next day I gave half of the 42 dollars to the church and was left with 22 dollars for ten days. I was unsure and worried that it wasn’t going to be enough. However, I knew my sister was right when she said: “God can do more with your 90% than you can do with your 100%”

            And God provided. That same night, my friend Katie, who was visiting, felt compelled to give me $25 dollars, without knowing my financial situation at all. So in the matter of hours, my allowance had doubled. A few days later, one of my customers at the coffee shop came in, on a day I wasn’t even suppose to be working, and handed my coworker and I a 20 dollar bill. He stated nonchalantly- “I have been meaning to give this you, it’s a tip. Id rather just hand it to you than put it in the tip jar.” So now I was at 67 dollars, with a week left to go. That same night, my friend gave me 25 more dollars because she had owed me money, which I had forgotten to account for in my original budget. Within a week, God had tripled my original amount!"

 Not only that, but I am thrilled to report that I am FULLY FUNDED! God did another crazy thing- a couple for my church, who have been a huge part of my community and encouragement here in Davis, had waited a while before they decided the extent they wanted to support me. When they checked in with me on Wednesday, I had reached $3000 dollars out of my $3500 goal. In his typical fashion, this friend nonchalantly stated: do you want us to finish it off for you?

Uhh..what? You mean like give me $500 dollars?!? I was blown away, and I first I responded in pride and said no. That is too much. I can't take that. But eventually I said: I want as much as you two have decided in your hearts to give me. "That was the amount we decided upon." 

God had already prepared their hearts to give me the 500 dollars before they even knew I needed it. They planned to give me the exact amount that I needed. CRAZY, right?!?

God is so good. He provides. Over and over again.

You are loved,

PS- Thank you for each and every one of you who have donated to my trip. Thank you for participating in what God has for me in Uganda. I am so glad you get to be a part of it with me!!