Posts tagged faith
Posts tagged faith
I went into Nehemiah with a heartache, well it’s a soft kind of heartache. I also went into it with the expectation that there will be conflict within our community. I leave with a great sense of peace. There were times when I got mad, sad, felt lonely, irritated, annoyed but it was short lived and was quickly replaced with joy. God is soo great.
I am devoting the next few months to be completely emotionally dependent on God. I felt sad, lonely and reflective. I felt dumb for wanting to cry when all of the people on this trip were in so much pain for things that were so deep into their lives. I didn’t want people to take their time to comfort me when there were other people more hurt then I. I finally spoke to a friend and she let me cry it all out but I immediately made myself stop when class reconvened. Later that day, we had solitude time and I turned to God for comfort. I spoke the truth out loud and ask Him to lead me into a story in the bible that would comfort me. I flipped over and landed on 1 Samuel 1:18-2:10. I cried so hard, but this time, openly so the other women, my sisters, came and gave me hugs and I explained that these were tears of joy. Because of this I was prepared for the conflict that my group had during our exercises.
To make a long story short, there were many leaders in our team. I did my best to not be the captain but I held firm to trying my best to assist the leader in his growth. He was so focused on winning the games that he sacrificed the relationships in the group. We lost every game and we felt defeated in every game—it was not fun. The team hashed it out but the group conversation left me feeling defeated—it wasn’t completely set right. At this point, our trip was almost over, I felt disconnected in my community. I remember thinking “really God, you really want me to depend solely on you? I thought I would at least have my family through the next few months!… I thought I could seek Jesus from the love of my community?…okay, I can do this… You’re present.”
Apparently I spoke with so much love that I was beating around the bush, my brother did not realize that I was just trying to help him grow. Finally he sought me out to apologize. I am so proud that he apologized and even called himself a jerk—not because he apologized or he realized that he was “wrong” but because he humbled himself to do it. He also ask that I rebuked him a little bit harder because that’s what big sisters should do with their younger brothers.
Praise the Lord for conflict! He is sovereign, He is love and He is so faithful!
“My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trails, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing.” James 1:2-4
My very first blog I wrote:
And now here I am, First Term Student at Impact 195. All the hard work, training, and certification from Restaurant Managing is out the door, all of the things that I was proud of, was out the door—meaning my identity is out the door.
One of the things I struggled with during 1st term was knowing my identity—it was scary to not have a plan. I was quickly comforted by my connect group that I was walking by faith and not by sight. I was comforted that my path is in God’s hands and it is okay that I do not have a plan nor do I know what exactly I am doing.
Then came design week (I posted a picture of what it looks like). Naturally I have the abilities of a strategic planner with idealistic background, this was most suitable for a restaurant manager. It was great to learn about spiritual gifts (Ephesians 4) and how I could fit in the Body of Christ. Yet I still did not know what it meant and what I’m supposed to do with it. Thankfully I am comforted that my path is in God’s hands and it is okay that I do not have a plan nor do I know what exactly I am doing.
Next was Africa. I was blessed to work in an eye glass clinic for 5 days, approximately 8 hours each day with an interpreter, Jerry. See the last post titled “He has a great plan for us!” One day Jerry asked if we can save people and my reply was “OF COURSE WE CAN”. But I immediately pointed out the type of people that we were seeing—pastors, counselors, pastors wives etc. We saw people that were saved and were seeking prayer for stronger faith, strength, healing and guidance. We immediately began a conversation of the different parts of the body of Christ. The next day using the parallel view of my ipad, we read Ephesians 4 together—half the screen was in Swahili and the other half was English. The following days I shared the devotions that the impact team had that morning or the night prior.
I am so thankful that God allowed me to meet Jerry. I was ready to start from scratch but yet, in my point of view, God showed me that I have natural abilities that can be used to edify the body of Christ. God started equipping me for ministry way before Impact and Impact is being used to get me farther along. I am so excited for the next term!
One thing that God has shown me today, the first day of clinics in Dar es Salaam, Tanzania, is that He has a plan for us. It’s just simply amazing to see how He chooses a group of 7 individuals to compose a body of Christ, each of us having different abilities, strengths and weaknesses. For example, it was like every person that we encountered today was divinely appointed to be with a specific member of our team. If the person was Muslim, they were with the Evangelist of the group. If the person was saved but needed strength/more faith, they were with the Idealist or Apostle of the group.
What a great day! Praise God for giving us a great purpose in life and affirming our identity in Christ.
Written by Melanie P — here is what we’ve been praying for. Please continue to pray for us while we are away. We leave in less than 24 hours.
Personal Prayer Requests: Please pray for….
Holy Spirit empowerment A deepening of intimacy in our relationship with Jesus through this trip
Boldness. Pray that I would walk confidently in Christ and not in fear/timidity (2 Timothy 1:7) to share the hope of the Gospel. I tend to be more of a listener then a speaker and always shy away from evangelizing opportunities on outreach & life in general. So, pray that God would transform me in this way and gives me a boldness for sharing with others about who He is and not let anything hinder me from that (including “perceived” language barriers”.
The gift of healing, either for myself or any of our team members. God’s word says that when His gospel is preached signs and wonders will follow to bring people to Him.(we will be running an eye glass clinic for people with issues with their vision so it will be a wonderful opportunity to share the gospel and pray for healing.) “And I will do whatever you ask in my name, so that the Son may bring glory to the Father. You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it” (John 14:13-14)
For our entire team to walk in & use their spiritual gift(s) for for the body & Kingdom work (and revelation of what those are if there is uncertainty) More boldness when faced with anything that seems “beyond my ability”. Pray for God sized assignments so that He gets ALL the glory!
Spiritual, physical, emotional, and mental protection Please pray against anything that could be a distraction or influence my being “present” during the trip and attentive to the Lord Ministry Prayer Requests for the church & eye glass clinic we have been assigned - St. Nicholas Anglican Church. for the 2,500 people from the surrounding community that are expected to come during the five days we are there (Aug 5-10).
for the 600,000 people expected to attend the festival Aug. 10-11 at the for multiplication of volunteers for the festival days - 5000 needed for the Tanzanian Christian currently getting trained as counselors who are being trained right now to assist those that will make a decision to accept Christ at the festival. for the Holy Spirit to be softening the hearts of those who will be hearing the Gospel to accept & come in to a loving and authentic relationship with Christ and know Him as their Lord and Savior for REVIVAL in the church - Tanzania has less than 20% attendence of church by those who identify themselves as Christian for the 100 volunteers coming in from overseas (many countries represented) who we will be serving along side of during the outreach week & festival weekend
Added by Amii
Health, safety and protection during our travels.
For the safety of the drivers that are taking us and picking us up from LAX.
Safety for our friends and family while we are away.
Faith, Hope & Love
that God has my best interest. Obey God fully and leave all the consequences to Him.
that I will grow in Him. I will learn daily. For my loved ones. View life positively.
My friends, family, unknown and enemies—help them learn, grow and with their struggles. Share my happiness, be generous and celebrate.
Trying to forgive and love like I’ve never been hurt is hard. I recognize that I’m trying to self-preserve which is letting bitterness and resentment in my heart. I don’t want to sound like I’m judging yet I can’t sit back and allow it to happen to me or to other people—hurting future endeavors. I hope for the realization that I am a sister that loves and I want to give insight to the pain caused.
Matthew 18: 15-20
“Moreover if your brother sins against you, go and tell him his fault between you and him alone. If he hears you, you have gained your brother. But if he will not hear, take with you one or two more, that ‘by the mouth of two or three witnesses every word may be established. And if he refuses to hear them, tell it to the church. But if he refuses even to hear the church, let him be to you like a heathen and a tax collector. Assuredly, I say to you, what every bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven. Again I say to you that if two of you agree on earth concerning anything that they ask, it will be done for them by My Father in heaven. For where the two or three are gathered together in My name, I am there in the midst of them.”
Ephesians 4: 25-27 & 29 & 31-32
Therefore, putting away lying, “Let each one of you speak truth with his neighbor,” for we are members of one another. ”Be angry, and do not sin”: do not let the sun go down on your wrath, nor give place to the devil. […] Let no corrupt word proceed out of you mouth, but what is good for necessary edification, that it may impart grace to the hearers. […] Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamor, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.
It sounds so cliche when I hear “just give up your burdens to God”. I mean HOW? Like imagine putting it on your hands and lift it to heaven? Like…Seriously???
In particular conflict with another person. When you feel like you’ve been wronged, hurt and that person doesn’t realize it, or worst, doesn’t care. It’s frustrating. Naturally you want to confront the person—make sure they know what they did and see their response. Right?!… WRONG.
Heres how I see it…
well I confess, I’m trying my best to see it—I’m a sinner and the worldly “natural” way is also my usual response…
Here’s how I see it…
Someone did you wrong. Who’s job is it to judge? Who should they repent to? Definitely not me or you. Who’s job is it to fix their heart? Who is the only one that is capable of doing that? God and only God. So back to the first series of questions, the answer is yes, lift it up to God. Seriously. (Emphasis on the period).
I don’t need to sink to this person’s level to confront. I don’t need to repeat their actions to get the point across. I don’t need to do anything except reflect on myself—my actions, my feelings and thoughts. All I need to do is focus on myself which means focus on becoming more like Jesus. Which also means…(insert dramatic music)… I must love this person like God loves this person.
I confess—that’s hard. I am led by my feelings and I naturally want to preserve myself. It’s hard to love and be vulnerable to someone who has hurt you multiple times. I don’t want to trust nor do I want to love someone who is unlovable. Luke 6:32-37
32 “But if you love those who love you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners love those who love them. 33 And if you do good to those who do good to you, what credit is that to you? For even sinners do the same. […] 35 But love your enemies, do good, […] and you will be sons of the Most High. For He is kind to the unthankful and evil. 36 Therefore be merciful, just as your Father also is merciful. 37 “Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. Forgive, and you will be forgiven.
That makes it easier. PRAISE GOD for The Word. Put my focus back on God and not my feelings. If I get hurt again, God will take care of it: He will right the wrong, He will make the changes and, of course, all in His timing. I don’t need to fix anyone but myself and I have God to help me. Thank you Father.
My heart breaks when people suffer and it causes them to distrust God.
It hurts to see their negative response for their hardship, when they can only see hardship and not the benefit of the bigger picture. People have this view that when it’s good, it’s a blessing. When the actuality are that blessings from God does not necessarily mean it’s positive and that it can also be when bad things happen.
It hurts to see how they turn their back, how they run from Him, instead of to Him. Don’t you see that would just cause you more suffering? Can’t you see that when you rely on yourself, that you can only produce a result that can only be from your own capabilities and not more? On the flip side, if you rely on God, you are relying on his great and mighty power that produces a result far greater than yours.
People, even though you feel this way, even though you blame God and don’t trust Him, even though you turn your back from Him, know that God loves you and He will always welcome your return with open arms.
I pray that you realize that happiness comes and goes but true joy comes from knowing God. I pray for comfort and realization that it’s from God. I pray that this brings you closer to God.
We are our own teacher and student. We learn through our own perceptions & experiences within our own life and the life of others—producing our own personal doctrine. Therefore be careful. Do not be a self deliverer of false teaching. Do not become your very own private “false teacher”.
I’m not sure what to do with this. Whoa!
Truly saying sorry means just saying sorry. It’s not the same as talking it out. Sometimes it’s not your place to talk it out. So take time to reflect and focus solely on yourself; do you feel any negative feelings? If so, apologize and be free from bitterness. Don’t expect the other person to reciprocate; let God take care of their issues. Take comfort that, if you do apologize, God has been working in you.
Don’t let self-gratification, self-glorification and self-preservation mess up your relationships. Negative feelings gives ammunition for the Devil to work; let go and be free.