Saturday, August 29, 2009
Yesterday I received a phone call at the office from the counselor I worked with when supervising a residential treatment program for sexually maladaptive adolescents. She needed help remembering an occurrence between two residents we worked with about a year ago and needed to remember how we responded to the situation for an upcoming court date. With all my new co-workers nearby, in my new office for my new job, and my seemingly new life, I couldn't bring myself to slip into that old vernacular. And so I just laughed. A lot. My old co-worker, seeking my help, apologized for calling me and mentioned that I had probably "blocked all this stuff out." I assured her that this wasn't the case (not really possible), but that it just felt so foreign for me to speak about such things. Which seems strange. Just three months ago I spent at least 40 hours a week talking about nothing but those things. And now I spend a majority of my week talking about sharing the gospel of Jesus Christ with the world through our missionaries and their supporters. Its funny how easily things begin feeling familiar, and just as easily begin feeling foreign.
Monday, August 24, 2009
Saturday, August 22, 2009
I love songwriting, and as a result I hardly ever actually listen to music. Instead, I'll spend time silently (or not so silently) mulling over lyrics I'm writing. Well, for a few weeks now I've tried broadening my horizons a bit by actually listening to the radio, hoping to grow as a songwriter. Two Hands by Jars of Clay has been playing a lot, and it really speaks to my heart as I feel God calling me to a higher commitment of serving Him fully, living in worship and ministry.
Thursday, August 20, 2009
Yesterday evening I went with Kimberly to listen to a speaker she knew, named Marsha. Marsha gave a testimony of how God has delivered her from physical pain, not with a mysterious flash of white light, but with the skills he placed in a surgeon's hands.
Marsha's spine was deteriorating and she feared she would die as a quadriplegic like her brother had. But Marsha pushed her fear aside and trusted that God would heal her. Marsha likes to say, "Jesus didn't just show up, He showed off!" Although I have poorly summarized Marsha's beautiful testimony, it was a wonderful reminder for me that modern miracles occur everyday, mistaken as medical marvels or scientific achievements. I am so comfortable, so accustomed to my wonderful life, that I often fail to see God's hand at work.
Mark 5:24-34 A large crowd followed and pressed around Jesus. And a woman was there who had been subject to bleeding for twelve years. She had suffered a great deal under the care of many doctors and had spent all she had, yet instead of getting better she grew worse. When she heard about Jesus, she came up behind him in the crowd and touched his cloak, because she thought, "If I just touch his clothes, I will be healed." Immediately her bleeding stopped and she felt in her body that she was freed from her suffering. At once Jesus realized that power had gone out from him. He turned around in the crowd and asked, "Who touched my clothes?" You see the people crowding against you," his disciples answered, "and yet you can ask, 'Who touched me?' But Jesus kept looking around to see who had done it. Then the woman, knowing what had happened to her, came and fell at his feet and, trembling with fear, told him the whole truth. He said to her, "Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace and be freed from your suffering."
Sunday, August 16, 2009
CSI ministries will exchange for food items (175 points/items to be exact :o)
Many people will be fed.
Sunday, August 9, 2009
This Saturday, August 15 at 8:00pm, our youth group will be gathering at the church to simulate homelessness, spending the night sleeping in cardboard boxes. There will be games to play and activities to take part in, but I'm mostly excited about what God will be doing in the hearts of these young people throughout this experience; The fellowship they'll share together. The appreciation they'll develop for the blessings they have. The passion God will ignite in them to do good works that He has prepared in advance for them. If you're interested in helping in some way, we are in need of some scrap materials such as old tarps or sheets of plastic; anything that could be used to make shelters. You can drop these items off at the church anytime on Saturday after around 6:00pm. You can also e-mail me at firstname.lastname@example.org to make other arrangements. Most of all, it would be great for people to support our youth through prayer and by bringing non-perishable food and household items to church on Sunday morning to give to the kids. All items will be used in the food bank. Thank you!
Monday, August 3, 2009
After two cancelled flights, two hours on standby for a delayed flight that we didn't even have tickets for, and after losing our lugguage somewhere in New Jersey, we have finally made it home! Although it's great to have our own bed to sleep in and all the other comforts of home, as well as being close to our family and friends again . . . I already miss Ireland.
Saturday, August 1, 2009
On day 7 of our trip, we visited Belfast, the Giant's Causeway, and Dunluce Castle. It was fantastic! Then we made our way back to Newcastle and ordered a take-out pizza. We took a taxi to the National Trust, where the Murlough House is. The taxi took us as close to the house as it could, and we walked the last couple miles, stopping at a picnic table to eat our pizza. Afterwards, we finished walking to the house to pack up and say goodbye to everyone.
Day 6 of our trip was great. Evelina, a missionary at the Murlough House from Poland, took us to the Ross Trevor Christian Renewal center. Then we stopped at a cool coffee and sandwich place called Grounded and did some shopping in a town called Newry. Afterwards, we had a barbecue and game night with the youth of Dundrum, busing them into the Murlough House.