Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Blessed with the surprise lilies to Israel:)

Meet Andrew, this amazing blessing in my life! Such a gift! A man whose shown me more about the Lord through His vibrant passion for worship and sharing the love of Christ with others, his character has grown me, and his friendship has pointed me back to Christ in a deeper intimate way. We met last semester at Murrieta at a conference and started hanging out after a missions trip together to Mexico. At the end of the semester during the break I went to Peru and he blessed me by pursuing a friendship and starting a prayer group for the trip there. His story might be a little different.. but continuing to pursue in friendship, months later after getting the 'yes' from my dad to pursue a relationship, he then asked me to pursue a relationship. I've gotten to see this whole thing unfold and so blessed to be able to work with him this summer at the Bible College conference center in Murrieta, and then even more excited about recent news that we both got offered the opportunity to intern next semester at the Bible College! So excited!

Galilee round 2, Jordan round 2, Nazareth round 1

The last weekend Dave was here at the end of the Joshua class, we went as a group up to Nazareth for a tour, to the Jordan to swim-covering every body of water in Israel, and back to the Sea of Galilee. Fukiko and Hondo got baptized by Dave in the Jordan where Jesus got baptized, and all four of Ernest's kids got baptized by him. In the morning we took a boat at sunrise out on the galilee and read the account where Jesus walked out on water. This story has been a key verse in my testimony.. it says that when Peter told Jesus to call him out on the water and Jesus told him to come, Peter began to walk toward his Lord, "But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, 'Lord save me'" Matthew 14:30. When Peter's eyes got off of Jesus and saw the 'wind' (something that can't even be seen) he became fearful and sank. It produced a cry in him and a realization that Jesus was the only one who could save him. I think of this story and think of the 'winds' in my life that got my eyes off the Lord and brought me to that cry. He is faithful! How great that our trials can bring us to that point where we can cry out in revelation, "Lord you are faithful!" They get us not focusing on our own strength and own dependency and they turn our eyes back to the One who can save. I encourage you to remember your salvation, what the Lord has saved you from! Today is a day to celebrate His salvation!
"In my distress I called upon the LORD; to my God I cried for help. From His temple He heard my voice, and my cry to Him reached His ears" Psalm 18:6 In the midst of angels crying out Holy Holy Holy, He hears your voice, He knows your cry like a mother knows the cry of her child, and He responds!

Life of David class

For our last class, Ryan flew out here and took us to the Valley of Elah to study 1 Samuel 17 where David fought Goliath, and to En Gedi to see the caves and waterfalls where David hid from Saul. This class was such a blessing because as we studied through 1 and 2 Samuel in the mornings, the afternoons we would break off individually and study some of the Psalms David wrote and come back together and discuss it.
For our last paper of the semester, we did a study on Psalm 139. It was such a blessing to study the Psalms and to understand more of why David was called a man after God's own heart... He was a man not after his own glory or fame, but a man whose passion was to bring glory to the Lord. Even after hiding out from Saul who wanted to kill him, waiting years to be king, standing face to face with a giant, seeing the depth of the separation of his own sin, and seeing the effect of sin in his family, David's heart was shown to be a man who intimately knew the Lord and knew the ways He thought of him. He knew was it meant to be forgiven and what it meant to stand int he victory that was declared to him. It has been a theme this semester... when I know how much God loves me and how He thinks of me, I too desire to bring Him glory because He is Holy! In His word is where we find that victory that He as promised. He promises to never leave or forsake us. Stand on the promises of His word... seek them out and make them your own!
"How precious to me are Your thoughts, O God! How vast the sum of them! If I would count them, they are more than the sand. I awake, and I am still with you." Psalm 139: 17,18
God's crazy about you.. and He doesn't ever stop thinking good thoughts about you! Oh wow!