Bon voyage!

My posts will be short and sweet as I will be using my iPod for the updates.
My mom is calm–check
My dad is rested and prepared–check
Teresa is at our house–check
My missionary journal is packed–double-check
Mi amor is by my side–currently processing..

After leaving home we will pick up mi amor and then drive to the shuttle, which will take us to DTW, where we will encounter the usual silliness; metal detectors and goofy people who back up the line with trying to get their over-sized carry on into the overhead compartments…agh I love traveling hahahahaha 🙂

Looking into my passport I realized that I never came back into the United States; my passport didn’t get stamped coming back into Atlanta, Georgia…meh :/ I guess it is sorta lame that my parents have more stamps than I do in their passports. Oh such is life…que sera sera.

We are all pretty awake for the trip, watching some Mister Bean, all of us crying and laughing extremely hard at his goofiness…I love it when my dad laughs 🙂

…until my update from the airport, luego!

¿?¿who knows¿?¿

.Incomprehensible.
I cannot believe that it is already the end of June…
In one month I have gone to Minnesota, Ohio, Kentucky, Ohio again, and now I’m going to Panama for missions.
I’m leaving Thursday around 1a.m.
{{prayers are ALWAYS appreciated}}

After a week in Panama, trying to be open to anything and everything that God calls of me, I’m off to Colorado and Minnesota.
*sigh*
…I definitely have the travel bug. 🙂

Sonria means Smile

It was the way I entered Panama last year…almost eleven months ago…

My dad worked extremely hard to set up his duties for Panama–he’s teaching a marriage seminar. My mother is assisting as well as a friend from church.
Mi amor and I, in the beginning were very unaware of what we were to do.

After much time-spaced e-mailings with Randy (head pastor) and Paco (youth pastor) a decision was made for us.
In order for some of the couples to be able to attend the marriage seminar, they would need a babysitter, which they were unable to find at home…therefore, mi amor and I were needed.

This {{I’m gonna call it..}} re-trip has reminded me that ministry comes in many diverse forms.
Even though we will be working within an air-conditioned hotel in Panama, we are obeying God’s lead.
Who am I to judge what is ‘right’…I’m so imperfect! I am not God–WHOOHOO! {{cause that’d be far worse than a disaster}}

God may use us to reach one person, and maybe we won’t even know it–but that one person Jesus died for.
God may cause one specific couple’s marriage to affect tons of lives, and the only reason they would have been able to come is because there was childcare available.

¿?¿who knows¿?¿

Mi amor helped me focus again on understanding that God can use anything and I’m glad he feels that way, it is undoubtedly encouraging to have the comfort in knowing he is trusting God, even if expectations aren’t met.

God is in control.

Lord, keep me smiling

~Wear a smile–one size fits all~

Ichthus Kentucky 2011

Aaron Gillespie*Abandon*Anberlin*Becoming the Archetype*Building 429*Children 18:3*Corpus Christi*Demon Hunter*Disciple*Fireflight*Flatfoot 56*For Today*Hillsong United* In the Midst of Lions*Ivoryline*Jason Castro*LeCrae*Living Sacrifice*My Heart Remains*Pacific Heights*Phil Keaggy*Sent By Ravens*Sleeping Giant*The Almost*The City Harmonic*The Great Commission*The Gunshow*The Wedding*White Collar Sideshow*Write this Down*

…Just some of the bands that were at Ichthus that I saw…

Within all the messages, worship, guitar solos, fired up symbols, white clouds, and Chick-Fil-A sandwhiches, I was overwhelmed.

They had a bunch of stages all over with all sorts of genres playing. My man and I were at the Heavy Metal stage the most.
And honestly, I enjoyed it immensely.

I casually cannot listen to Becoming the Archetype, but on stage; live,  they were amazing.

I used to have a problem with heavy metal, not finding the sense in it. I loved the instrumentals but when the growling//screamo stuff started I was gone in a flash–fleeing the scene ASAP.

Over the year and half I have been dating my love, I’ve slowly gotten more open and used to heavy metal, but he was always respectful of me not being as enthusiastic as he was, so we wouldn’t listen to it for long–or even any of it at times.

I believe that some of the most on-fire disciples of Jesus Christ are from Hardcore Christian bands, such as Tommie Green (Sleeping Giant) and Mattie Montgomery (For Today).
The lyrics of their songs reach out to the deeply hurt and they profess the grace and healing and love of Jesus Christ.

The best messages that I heard came from the Heavy Metal stage.

After my day of almost being purely at that stage, I came to the realization that screamo//growling is just another layer of music…
Just like the mandolin and the electric guitar, screamo and blues, they all present musical diversity.

I am so thankful that we have on-fire disciples that form screamo bands, because those kids who listen to that music can be reached by that music.
Most of the time people who listen to that music don’t like softer music, but God uses his people in whatever way He calls them to and He takes people to be His own through that.

I witnessed, in front of a thousand people, one person shoot his hand up in the air wanting to accept Christ as his Lord and Saviour at the Sleeping Giant concert.
ONE hand.
ONE step.
ONE real move to a life of sacrifice.

These bands are real. They present the love of Christ and make themselves nothing.
Many times I heard from the other side of the microphone, “I don’t care about our bands, I don’t care about the lights, just because we’re up here, doesn’t mean we’re better than you; none of this matters. What matters is the love that Jesus Christ has for you; you are not forgotten, you are worth something and He has a plan for your life.”

After Kentucky sunsets and embracing people in all their craziness, it came down to relationships.
Love is the greatest commandment.
Loving God and loving people.

Life is about relationships.

In every person we can see a piece of ourselves if we look deep enough.
We all wear masks and we all fail.
Being translucent in our failures; in our weaknesses, presenting  the grace and forgiveness of Christ–we are nothing.
God doesn’t need us, He chooses us.
He decides to love us, even though He doesn’t have to.
HE is what matters in this life. Jesus Christ is our master and as a disciple, we are to do everything in love out of service for Him.

“What is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? You made him a little lower than the angels; you crowned him with glory and honor and put everything under his feet.”
Hebrews 2:6b

“Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man is powerful and effective.”
James 5:16

New Feet

I love traveling…OH SO MUCH!!!
I am off to Kentucky for Icthus!

I haven’t been so fabulous on updating my blog often. :/ oopsies!

My summer started after the completion of my National Certification for Pharmacy Technicians that I took on may 23. Two days later, I was off to Minnesota for six days. I had a wonderful time, sharing life with my mom and close friend while driving all night straight through to Minneapolis. I saw my great friend that I’ve known for years but due to the distance haven’t hung out with as much as I would have liked in my eighteen years. She came along with my mom, aunt, and friend to the Mall of America…where we were surprised by my brother!!! He had moved to North Dakota for job opportunities back in February. My friend was over-joyed, since she is dating him–and has been for three and a half years.
After some Minneapolis time we drove to Rochester for my cousin’s bridal shower and the following day was my other cousin’s open house.
My Minnesota adventure was filled with delicious Caribou Coffee {{the BEST, in my opinion}} fabulous family and wonderful adventures.
The morning after arriving back to Michigan, my friends and I went gallivanting on down to Ohio, staying overnight at the Kalahari resort. It was a bountiful gift by the maid of honor’s father. The five of us, all part of the bridal party {{four bride’s maids and the bride}} had some quality bonding and silly times.

After spending time with friends and finishing up part of my summer book list, I’m off again.
Kentucky is a state I have spent enough time in to simply drive through, while stopping at a gas station; this trip will expose me to more of Kentucky’s beauty.

{{~~~}}

Every time I travel, I feel as though I have new feet, even if I had been to that place before.
I seem to forget all roughness and yucky stuff I’ve been exposed to, even if for a moment, when I go off on adventures.
My feet are new and clean and crisp–this is probably why so many relocate to new places–to forget their pasts; the hurt haunts them.

BUT
I don’t travel to forget my mistakes or hurt,
I travel because I love it; God gave me a love for travel.

My new feet help me realize the beauty that is around me and/or the hurt that haunts others. My soul longs to help people–and all of a sudden my selfishness is gone.

My feet may be rough and rugged and torn,
bruised and battered and worn,
but I have a Home.

Their feet may be rough and rugged and torn,
bruised and battered and worn,
but the Home is unknown.

In the midst of thorns,
they wail and mourn,
with Hope unknown.

If I was wise,
the Heavens I would shine,
bright like the stars in the sky.

I live to try to,
Shine the Hope,
this is how they know He was born.

  

So You Don’t Want To Go To Church Anymore?

One of my best freinds; Lizzie, gave me this book that her dad bought, the title is “So you don’t want to go to church anymore?”
It is a fiction book, but extremely thought-provoking and it’s not a novel.

I am not able to type a long post, but I just thought I’d share and recommend this book.
Here is a quote from the book that I love extremely:

“Don’t think you can control God by your actions because it isn’t like that. If we could control God, He’d turn out like us. Wouldn’t it be better to let Him have His way in our lives so we become like Him?”