Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Couldn't Our Prayers Do More??

I'd first like to preface this blog post by saying I am FOREVER GRATEFUL for everyone who prayed for me last Tuesday to make sure I made it up to Minneapolis!  I know it was only because of Jesus Christ and your prayers that the last seat on not one, but TWO flights was available for me! 

Also, I am in no way downplaying the need for us to daily depend on God for absolutely everything, yes even open seats on flights..God WANTS us to ask Him for those things because He is our loving Father who wants to give us good things. James 1:17 and Matthew 7:11 give testimony to that.

What I mean when I say "Couldn't our prayers do more??" is just that though...couldn't our prayers do more than just provide 2 open seats on flights?? I was really struck by the power of prayer last week and I don't want to lose that.  The following excerpt is from the note I took on my last flight from St. Louis to Minneapolis when I realized how only GOD could have provided the way for me to stay on that flight.  There wasn't suppose to be an empty seat...but nothing is impossible with God and I know the prayers of God's faithful were heard and answered with a yes!

I pray this note encourages you to think about the requests we present to God, again knowing that He wants us to ask for all things, even open seats on flights! Let us not forget to pray for the lost!

"I praise God I'm on my way to Minneapolis. I praise God for caring about me and loving me this much to make sure I get on this plane. I praise God that I have a smart phone to put out prayer requests. But is this my vine?? What is God concerned about? This guy sitting beside me for sure. Tell him Katie how God provided this seat. How the prayers of 100s went up just to make sure I got here. Praise God for the prayers. But again Katie what if the prayers of everyone went out to save souls. To proclaim Christ. How amazing would that be to see! God transforming hearts at the requests of His people. Lord I have a lot to process right now. You worked in a visible and tangible way today! You got me up to MSP! Don't let me forget.

Jim, the guy beside me, has two daughters. In his 20s, he suffered a lake tubing accident and was 39 days unconscious; In hospital for 10 months. He knows it was God who got him thru that.

Couldnt our prayers do more??! It wasn't for miracle seats on flights that I was saved, granted its another faith builder that's for sure! Is there power in prayer? Absolutely! So why not harness that power to fully fall down on our knees and pray for the world!! I want to see people put their faith in Christ and live out that personal relationship! Pray!!

Lord you got me here! What do I do with it?"

Who likes pink??

 When I returned to NOLA from my training session in MN, I was greeted on Sunday night by 32 pink shirts!  Yes pictured right is Sandstone EFC from Sandstone MN.  They served with us last year and could not wait to serve again.  For most this trip truly impacted their life.  On Thursday nights we hold a sharing time and there was story after story of God transforming their hearts to see just how much He is at work and how much He loves the people of New Orleans. 
 Pictured Left:
This is Ms. Linda.  She lives in the upper 9th ward and like most homeowners in this area, her home was completely flooded by the storm.  Since the storm she has been able to restore the interior but the exterior of her home has been another constant reminder of that horrible day 6.5 years ago.  We will be working with Ms. Linda, showing her the love of Christ, through meeting this physical need.  We are blessed to have this opportunity to extend Christ's love to Ms. Linda and her family.
Pictured Right: Meet Cassie!

This is my girl Cassie.  She is working on Ms. Valerie's home (across the street from my house) and this was her very first mission trip.  Her proximity to my house/office allowed us to hang out quite a bit.  I really enjoyed getting to know Cassie and hear how God showed her the importance of family through her mission trip to NOLA.  Check out the video on facebook to hear from Cassie herself about what God taught her. 

Praise God for using a storm more than 6 years ago to transform people's hearts! God be praised!!

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

From Trainee to Trainer

The picture above I took from my seat in a conference room in EFCA's National Office (NATO) in Minneapolis last week.  The people in the picture are my dear friends and fellow missionaries who just like me are called by God to serve Him in full time ministry.  They are all gathered for what I attended in December 2011 called Ministry Partnership Development Training.

As you can see, I'm not one of the attendants sitting in the first set of tables.  This time I took my place in the second round of tables reserved for trainers.  Yep, NATO asked if I could come up and share with my fellow missionaries all God taught me through my quest for ministry partners and how did God use me to find those ministry partners.

I fully recognize that without God I would not have been invited to do that. It was ALL GOD who brought about 100% in 4 months and 10 days.  I truly give Him ALL glory, honor, and praise!  I can't tell you how blessed I was to encourage my friends that God does have their ministry partners out there and that He is working even when we don't see Him at work.

The verse I have shared in this note is one that the LORD revealed to me during my MPD quest.  The question that I shared with the group was...

What do you do between inviting people to pray about joining your ministry team and the visible evidence of God at work?

There were multiple times when I felt discouraged due to lack of fruit from my quest but that doesn't mean God wasn't at work.  I remember when my health insurance increased to an amount I wasn't expecting, I freaked out and became upset. But then within a week God provided someone to counteract that difference and gave more than needed.  I remember saying "Of course had it taken care of this whole time." I asked for forgiveness for my freak out session and told my trainees to respond better than me when this stuff happens to them.

So I encourage you...there WILL be periods of darkness, no light, when we think God has forgotten us and isn't listening or doing anything...remember, this is when He calls us to TRUST Him and rely on Him! Keep being diligently obedient to His will and don't be discouraged when you don't see the visible evidence of God at work...because why?  He is ALWAYS working!  Trust Him.