Summer 2013.

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I’ve never been shaken of my faith so much. This summer has taken everything I thought I knew about Christ and His love for me, shattered it, and opened my heart to God. Not to interpret God and what I THINK or THOUGHT I knew about Him, but allowed Him to reveal Himself to me in such a new way.

To all of you who have taken time consistently to pray for me and the different teams I was a part of this summer, I thank you with an abundance of thanksgiving. My heart is overwhelmed and taken back by the power of prayer that you all have displayed for what God is doing through me.

I want to share with you what I learned, how things are going to be different this year, and what Got is currently doing in my heart. But I will be breaking it up so you’re not over-whelmed in reading

Nicaragua was very different from last year. Last year we left with promises of return and restored hearts for what God really wanted to use many of us for upon return. We learned humility as we walked along side people in villages that are not as wealthy financially as many of us in the States, but who are so rich in culture and love. People who  desire to show you the upmost hospitality and they don’t even know you. This year when we returned it wasn’t the same. By it, I mean my heart.

As many of you know, I have a huge heart for this country and what God did and is still doing there. But this year I actually had to try and seek the Lord. Last year things were so different in a sense of going and depending on God for the unknown. This year I knew what to expect and didn’t truly take everything in until about halfway through the trip. “When we meet with old friends, we forget about being intentional in relationships because we have to catch up and spend time together.” This is the mentality I had about returning to the village we would be reconnecting with from the previous year. I thought I could do everything on my own because we would be doing many things the same as last summer. Halfway through the trip, we spent hours of prayer in an upper room of a woman’s house who spent so much time in prayer on her knees her knees had calloused and blackened.  I began to pray with vulnerability for the first time in a long time. I prayed that God would reveal to  me what He wanted for my life. As many of you know, this doesn’t always just happen. I wanted answers for every detail. And God just spoke to me..this is what I heard and this is what I remind myself of often..

“You are my beloved child. My daughter. As much as I love you, I want you to not be so caught up in knowing all I have in store for you. If you knew everything I had for you, you could not possibly contain the joy for the work I’m going to be doing in your heart. But even if I did tell you, how is that fair? You would have nothing to look forward to, and you would feel you wouldn’t need me. You would miss communication with me. When would you ask me for guidance? When would you seek my approval before moving? For when would you have to be on your knees in prayer for brokenness and coming to me-when hope is right around the corner? I desire for your heart to be in oneness with me. In order for this to happen, you have to let go of your life. Surely you know I have what’s in your best interest, so trust me Carmen. Trust that I am a God of truth, but more than that..I am your father who desires for you to succeed…”

And it goes on.

But the point isn’t to tell you all God specifically told me, the point is that we question everything in our life, what path to take, who to date, when to call someone, where to go to school, where to work, what to wear, where to move, and so on. We get so caught up in asking all of these things that we miss it. We miss Him. We miss asking God the most important question, “God, what will you have me do?” We only have one shot. One shot at life. Lets stop putting so much pressure on ourselves. You are made right in His image and He will pull you through the desert. He will pull you through this season of unknown. As exciting or scary as it may be. But you have to trust. We have to learn to surrender before we take one more step.

I’ll write in a few days about my second trip went! Road trips and not just meeting people, but friendships forming.

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