Help me see with eyes of faith. Give me strength to run this race. i will go Lord, where Your glory is unknown, i will live for You alone. i will go because my life is not my own. i will go...

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

My Roomies....

But I don't want to share my room!! I started out with a room all to myself...and now I have 2 new roommates! Yes, that's right, the gecko & the wall of termites have taken up residency in my room. I keep asking them, "Why me? What did I do to deserve your presence?" haha...I keep trying to get rid of them...but they keep coming back! (the termites especially...they never die!) on the mission field! At least we don't have any cockroaches or scorpions yet!
And here's a picture of the roomie I'm thankful to have! :) Kimi!!

Monday, May 26, 2008

"Divine" Smoke....hmm, in Colombia?

I'm not talking about anything illegal...this was ALL from the LORD! For Saturday, we had planned a traditional Colombian lunch for our Volunteer Team...Moto de Queso! Two of our friends were cooking outside in the outdoor "kitchen"...if you can even call it that! The smoke from the wood fire was FLOWING into the living room area where about 50 women (& a few men!) were participating in a flip-flop decoration workshop. Our eyes were the point of crying! We decided we couldn't take it any more! The only problem was that we had a group of leaders and youth outside in the patio for a sports evangelism workshop! There was no where else to go! We asked the guys if they would "find another location" so that the women could stop "crying!" haha! They went outside in search for a new location to teach...and found a woman who was willing to open up her home. After the session, she asked if they would come back...and start a house church IN her home! Wow! The smoke caused the 2nd team to make a contact with someone who's heart was definitely open to the gospel! We call that "Divine" Smoke! What a Blessing! Our Volunteer Team from Slidell flew home this morning....but they will be back! We are so excited to have formed a strategic partnership with their home church. What a blessing to have a body of believers who desire to work along side us in the ministry the Lord has called us to in Colombia. They came with servant hearts and a willingness to be flexible...and made their time with us such a blessing! They not only blessed our IMB team, but also the Colombian Leaders! We are looking forward to their return!...and to keeping up with them throughout the year! :)
This is my little buddy...he's at every craft workshop we have! I get to love on him while his mommy learns new craft ideas & how to use crafts to share Christ!
The two older girls were baptized after one of our leadership sessions. We don't always have abundant sources of fresh, or can I say even "clean" water to use. These girls were baptized in a half-filled tank of water. Little Marie wanted to be baptized with her sisters. She has accepted Christ but was so scared to be "dunked." Most Colombians can't swim and are often scared when thinking about being submerged in it! Please pray the Lord takes away their fears!

Friday, May 23, 2008

How Beautiful Are The Feet That Bring Good News...

My 1st Volunteer Team of the year is finally here...from Slidell, Louisiana. This sweet team of 5 people came to teach our Colombian Christian Leaders. Slidell has committed to form a Strategic Partnership with the Refuge Team. This means they aren't just coming to knock on doors and do mass evangelism...they actually want to partner and learn the strategy that actually works with our people group...and commit to return several times a year! Since desplasados are "oral learners", the team learned how to teach through using Chronological Bible Stories...and they did a great job! We had 23 people participating in our 1st Leadership Training Session. Please keep us in prayer as we have 2 more days of training our leadership teams & sports teams! We know the Lord has a lot in store for this weekend!

A Sweet Story.....We have been discipling a group of desplasados who live in the middle of NOWHERE! Getting out there each week by CAR is a challenge! Today, we had 4 women who felt like the Lord wanted them to come to the Leadership they walked for 2 hours to get to where we had the meeting! Two of these ladies are in their 60s and 70s...but they came! How precious is the heart that seeks the Lord.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

This is what it means to be held...

Today my heart cries out to the Lord. I'm asking the Lord for wisdom and understanding. Why does the Lord allow the ones we love to feel heartbreak, to experience situations that we cannot explain or understand? ...all I know is that He is God. He is Creator & Sustainer. He allows us to walk through the fire to refine us. He wants to make us more like HIM. He wants us to cry out to draw strength from know HIM more. If it takes Him bringing us to our knees, taking us through situations we just don't understand...somehow we have to know in our hearts that it is worth the pain. He is Trustworthy. We can put our HOPE in Him....

I was listening to this song by Natalie Grant:

This is what it means to be held, how it feels, when the sacred is torn from your life, and you survive. This is what it is to be loved and to know that the promise was when everything fell...we'd be held

Thank you, sweet Jesus, for never leaving nor forsaking us. Your arms are always there, holding us. I believe in your faithfulness....

To my sweet cousin, you are always in my thoughts and prayers! I believe with all my heart that the Lord is allowing this for His glory. I'm trusting in Him and the Redemption Story He has for this situation!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Photo Journal (February - March)

I don't have much time to write today, but I wanted to share some pictures with you...
Little boy in on of the barrios where we work

Jon, Noami, Kimi & I in Centro (Old Town)

Andres, the little brother of my good friend Alejo

Learning to make Coconut Rice...the hard way...cutting it up into little pieces by hand!

Jeremy...she loves to sing her heart out to the Lord!

I've been "Off the Map" for too long!

Hi friends! I have been out of touch for way too long! Who get's the blame?...Lack of internet connection, computer power-cord getting shocked out of commission (i.e. no power for my computer for 2 months!)...and the list could go on! BUT....we serve a Mighty God who's concerned even with the small stuff in our lives! Praise the Lord for internet @ home, a working computer & a US phone line to call the States! :)
For those of you who don't know...I'm serving in Colombia, South America with the IMB's Journeyman program. After 2 months of training in VA, 3 months in Costa Rica: learning Spanish & hanging out with some of the coolest M's I know...I moved to Colombia in February 2008. It has been a crazy adventure, but I'm so thankful to be here, where I know the Lord has called me!
Thanks to encouragement from my sweet cousin Amber, I have decided to re-join the blogging world! I was creating these amazing newsletters...but when I tried to send them off, the files were too large to attach with my "slow" interent! So, I'll try to upload my experiences and thoughts, as well as pictures on my blog! Keep posted for new pictures!
Thank you so much for everyone who has prayed for & encouraged me these past few months! It has been a blessing in my life!
By HIS Grace, Sarah