Love

My Heart Weeps :(

I am sitting here on my couch, in almost a fog, but it a “Spirit-filled” fog!!!! Praise the Lord!

My mind and heart continues to be in Worship…Oh what a privilege to be in God’s presence, worshiping Him above all things and hearing His amazing, life-changing Word this morning!! I am so thankful for my Mom and Dad who brought me to church, gave me a Bible, took me to confirmation and Bible Classes and encouraged me to learn more about my Savior, Jesus, a pastor who brought me to youth events that told me about Jesus love, and the need for DCE’s in the church. Camp Luther, Wisconsin and its amazing counselors and Junior Counselors who had a love for Jesus so powerful and so contagious that is changed my whole life (and I still dream about taking a sabbatical and being a counselor there for a whole summer – yes even at 38 years old) and the leader of our DCE program at Concordia University, St. Paul who taught me about servant-hood, and the joy of leading people in the Word and teaching them the Hope we have only in Jesus. ALL of those things, I did FREELY without ever a worry in my heart that I would ever be persecuted for my faith. I never had to fear. The words of our speaker from this morning “What will you do with this gift? (ie: The Word of God)” are ringing through me ears and weaving through my heart. What a powerful message that is sitting with me hours later. I am praying for our persecuted church all over the world, but I am especially praying for the people in our own United States of America, the Golden Triangle and my small town in Texas where WE ARE FREE to worship and study God’s Word, yet we so often let other things come first. What am I kidding, we let EVERYTHING come before our God. ūüė¶¬†I’m also a guilty party here. God’s Word is changing lives and people are risking their lives just to hear God’s Word and have a relationship with Him, yet, we don’t care. We are satisfied going about our busy lives and putting Jesus, our best friend, our Savior, our Creator, in the back seat…wait, no, in the in trash hoping He will go far away and stop knocking on our doors and bothering our busy lives. We shove Him aside without batting an eye. We are soooooooooo busy. It hurts my heart. And again, I am talking to myself here. My heart weeps.

If you were not actually able to be with us this morning at Holy Cross,¬†I am actually beyond sorry that you weren’t. I am sincerely sad that you and yours weren’t here this morning, (and I know that is really bold to say), but its because I am really, really sad that you weren’t able to hear what I heard. The message, the experience, was THAT incredibly life-changing and there will never be another exact moment like it. I know there are others that felt the same.

I want to know Jesus. I want to know Jesus more intimately than anyone I’ve every known, and I desire to recognize His every Word. I also have a mission to tell you about this greatest gift, God’s Word, that we are FREE to read, cherish and live out every day without fear. We need to be in God’s Word, in God’s house, in devotions together as a family, in prayer talking to God who hears our every word and promise to answer. People are dying to hear God’s Word, and yet we ourselves are truly dying because we don’t.

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YOU are in my prayers today, ladies and gentlemen! I’m praying that you would know the incredible love of our Savior, Jesus, which we know from The Bible – HIS LIFE-CHANGING Word! Know you are loved! Thank you, Jesus!

When was the last time a vacation truly changed you?

When was the last time a vacation truly changed you? 

Hmmmm? Do you know?

As of 4pm this afternoon parents, grandparents, children and teachers alike were purely mad, because spring break had finally commenced! Hundreds¬†already¬†had their bags “packed and ready to go” to the beach, to the lake, to the local fair, or even simpler yet, to the comfort of their living room couch. ¬†

But when was the last time a vacation truly changed you?

Sadly the answer to this valid and invaluable question for me, personally, is NEVER. ¬†Indeed, I have shared in countless mission trips throughout my tenure as a youth minister, each experience moving me in one way or another, and I pray, changing lives. However, I have never been privileged,¬†nor courageous enough to participate in a “personal” mission. ¬†I have always envied those individuals who, like Elizabeth Gilbert in¬†Eat, Pray, Love, ¬†just took off to a foreign country to experience life anew. It has never been possible for me, but that will change in 2015, in view of the fact that, this¬†naive, small town, thirty-something girl will finally be flying across the sea to visit the two beautiful girls, whom I sponsor, from Rwanda, Africa. ¬†I don’t know exactly how, nor do I know the details, but after much prayer and soul-searching, I have come to the conclusion that it is finally time to take a vacation that will renew my spirit! Lord, have mercy! Christ, have mercy! Lord, have mercy!

Aside from crossing the border and traveling a few miles into Mexico, I have never traveled to another country (unless of course you consider the moment I moved to Texas from the frozen tundra, lol. Now that was a trip!). However, in one year and seven months, through Compassion International, I have decided it is time!!!   

I’m going to RWANDA, AFRICA in October 2015!

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I’m going to Rwanda in 575 days (or so), but who is counting, right?

¬†“Many children in need wonder if they matter. Poverty tells them that they are nothing.” (compassion.org) Throughout the duration of these next 575 days I will be envisioning that sincere moment in time, when we finally meet face to face! ¬†Our faces will no longer be one¬†dimensional. We will¬†be blessed to touch and hold one another, play games together, meet family, personally express our love, and finally pray. ¬† Ahhhh, to pray! ¬†If you know me, you recognize how much I value physically holding a person’s hand in prayer. The Bible says, “For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them‚ÄĚ (Mathew 18:20). ¬†

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How powerful it will be to have their precious hands in mine in Christ’s name!¬†¬†

Please pray for Uwineza and Mukademari, their families and myself as we begin preparing for this life-changing journey!

Uwineza           Mukademari

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While I am talking about Compassion International, let me introduce you to Alvaro Chura!

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Alvaro is a precious eight year old little boy from Bolivia, South America.  His birthday is December 28, 2005 and he enjoys playing ball games and running.  He lives with his mother, father, and seven other siblings in Bolivia. His father is sadly not always employed and his mother maintains the home and takes care of her eight children. Yes, indeed.  Alvaro is one of EIGHT CHILDREN in the family!   

As a sponsor of two of my own children through Compassion, I can promise you, becoming a sponsor will be an absolute blessing to you and your family. I never imagined how my life would change, how two little girls across the ocean would transform my existence and give it purpose.  Furthermore, I never imagined that I would be able to financially support not only one, but two children from another country.  Proof that God always provides!

Won’t you please prayerfully consider sponsoring Alvaro? ¬†

He has been waiting for over six months to be sponsored. Your love and support¬†of only¬†$38 a month¬†will help him to receive the assistance he needs to grow and develop. ¬†At the very least won’t you keep him in your prayers?

If you would like to sponsor Alvaro, please contact me by leaving a “comment” with your contact information.¬†Your information will not post publicly because I have to “okay” comments before they post. I will then contact you directly to get the information to “officially” sponsor Alvaro through Compassion International!

Compassion International exists as a Christian child advocacy ministry that releases children from spiritual, economic, social and physical poverty and enables them to become responsible, fulfilled Christian adults” (compassion.com).

If you would like to consider sponsoring a different child, one with your birthday, one with your name, one the same age as your child, etc., please go to the following link to do so: http://www.compassion.com/sponsor_a_child/default.htm?referer=135158

Thank you and God bless!