When You’re Not Looking… pt. 1

A little over a year ago, I gave God my idea of relationship.

It was during my DTS and all week the speaker had been talking about God’s character. “His character is always consistent, but unpredictable.” He said that over and over throughout the week, challenging us students to look at our relationship with God and see where we were expecting Him to react in a certain way. He had this great analogy to go with his phrase. He described God as a bouncy ball. He said the bouncy ball will always bounce – that’s not the question. The question is where is it going to go once you throw it on the ground. So by Friday, we’d had plenty of time to think about where we tried to box God in by our expectations. During our last lecture time that week, we spent the whole hour and an half taking our expectations to the cross and laying them at God’s feet. Some people laid down their financial situations or their future plans.

That week, God had begun to show me that I had a very structured idea of what a dating relationship should look like. I think I expected what most people would consider “normal” – or something along that line. I expected to meet someone and get to know him as a friend for maybe a year or two… then if there seemed to be some attraction, maybe start dating after that. And then after one or two years of dating, after we were both good and sure that we wanted to, we’d get engaged. Then we’d be engaged for six months or a year or so and then get married and live “happily ever after.” As God began to show me that, He began to challenge me on that. I felt like He was asking me if that was His way of doing things or my own. I was pretty sure it was my own, but I saw nothing really wrong with that formula, so I left it. I thought it was healthy. Wise. Smart. Why rush in to something that you’re committed to for life?

Then on that Friday morning, as the speaker was explaining what he wanted us to do, a question hit my heart hard:

“Would you marry someone you’ve only know for six months if I told you to?”

My heart just about stopped.

That was crazy. Only crazy people did that. You don’t just marry someone after knowing them for six months. That’s just a bad idea. The more I thought about it, the more I realized it wasn’t a question of if I was spontaneous enough or daring enough, but rather it was a question of if I was willing to trust God that much. Was I willing to just jump when He told me to? Not because I was necessarily sure, but because I trusted Him completely.

So as other people started speaking out these things that they wanted to trust God with more, my heart was pounding out of control and sweat was trickling down my back. I believe that our words have power; when we speak things out loud, it makes a difference. And I believed in that moment if I said these things out loud, God would hear them and would take them seriously. So I was nervous. It’s hard to let go of things we like to feel in control of. And that’s where the trust comes in.

It was time for a leap of faith, and I knew that.

Then all of the sudden, it was time. It was one of those moments when you just know that you have do act right now. Something just stirs inside of your heart; there’s an intense burning and you know that now is the moment. I remember kneeling there and speaking out these words in front of all of my classmates:

“God, I give you my idea of what a relationship looks like. And I trust You. If you tell me to marry someone and I’ve only known them for six months, I trust You and I’ll follow through.”

You know how sometimes you say something that has been bothering you for a long time and you instantly feel better? Like a huge weight has been lifted off of your shoulders?

Yeah, this wasn’t like that.

I didn’t really feel any differently and in all reality I didn’t really expect anything to happen out of that moment. But like I said, I believe our words have power. And I believe in that moment, God saw my act of faith and He heard the words that I said. I think He was proud of me then, too. I also think He saw what a difference this heart attitude would have in my life. Because it was then that I started my journey of truly letting go my idea of what a dating relationship should look like. That’s when I started to let go of my right to a husband and trust that if God wanted that for my life, He’d bring the right guy along at just the right moment.

And wouldn’t you know it….

That’s exactly what He did.

 

….to be continued…..

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It’s…. It’s been a while…

Sorry guys… It’s been too long. I’d say it’s been busy here (which isn’t a lie) but that’s not an excuse. So here’s my written apology and my commitment to you: I’m sorry for not communicating well and I am going to strive to do better. My goal for this upcoming season is to post at least twice a month, just so you can stay as updated and as informed as possible! Please have grace with me, because life here at the base gets crazy quickly, but know that I am going to do my best to uphold that commitment on my end.

There. Now on to what’s been going on the past month.

Has anyone else realized that Christmas is in 8 days? I just realized that at the beginning of the week. Que the last minute shopping and holiday craziness before flying back to Minnesota to visit my family in a few short days! I’m beyond thankful for the chance to go home to visit my family for the holidays. It’ll be 9 days full of family, friends, late nights, too much food, and copious amounts of coffee. And I refuse to feel guilty about indulging in any of the above. 🙂

Besides the realization that Christmas is actually right around the corner, the past month has been full of so many things – some good, some hard, but all of them at the exact time God intended them for. I’ve been realizing that the past couple of days. God’s timing is perfect. And it’s a beautiful thing when we let Him take control of what happens when. Also, how much freedom is there in not having to control things? Much. Much freedom. For which I am grateful.

This week we’ve been focusing a lot on freedom and breaking fear of man. We’ve had some wonderful, intense worship and prayer times as a group, just spending time in the Presence of God and enjoying Him together. This morning we spent some time praying for the Snowboarders and Freeskiers DTS starting in just a few short weeks. We declared things and claimed things; things for the base, for the students, for us as leaders, and for the city of Davos. We prayed against the fear of man and declared that there is no shame in looking like a fool for Jesus. That’s the line that keeps ringing in my head today: No Shame. If you haven’t heard United Pursuit’s song, Head to the Heart, you need to. Go look it up. It’s just good.

As a team, we’ve also gone through some hard days and have really realized the value of unity and what it means to actually be unified. For myself, I’ve been reading a book by John C. Maxwell called “Developing the Leader Within You” and and while it didn’t really address unity directly, it talked about what it means to be a leader and how to lead effectively. First of all, the definition given in the book of a leader is someone who has followers, but also someone who influences people. And in my opinion, the whole book just continues to talk about how influence has to start with yourself. That’s what I’ve realized. If I want people to trust me, I have to be a trustworthy person and trust others as well. If I want our team to be unified, I need to work on cultivating a spirit of unity in myself and create an atmosphere that fosters unity. Now, it’s not all on my shoulders, but it starts with my attitude. And I realized at the beginning of this week that I haven’t been a very trustworthy person the over the past few weeks. That’s on me. The only person that can change that is me. So instead of blaming other people for the lack of trust or lack of unity or lack of whatever, I realized that I need to start taking ownership and responsibility of my own actions and improve the parts that need improvement. That takes humility. It takes being willing to apologize to people and ask for forgiveness. Then it takes the wisdom to ask God to help me fix the places in my own life that are out of whack.

This week has been awesome. God’s blown me away so many times and I love it. I’m thankful for Grace. I’m thankful for Love. I’m thankful that I get to be a part of the YWAM Davos team. I know that the Lord has brought us all here for a reason and I can’t wait to learn more from each one of these wonderful people. They’ve become family and this house has become my home. And for that, I am thankful.

In closing:
I’m flying home to visit my family in just 5 short days!! I would love if you guys could pray for safe travels.

Also, continual prayer for unity – that it would grow stronger and deeper.

And prayer for the students coming soon! Pray that all of their finances would come in and that they would be surrounded by support from family and friends. We’re so excited to welcome them all here in a few short weeks!

Back to Davos

Greetings Friends!!

We’re back! Back in the land of chocolate and cheese – otherwise known as Switzerland!

swiss alps and lake
swiss alps and lake

Thank you to everyone who was praying for travels this earlier this week! It was probably the easiest travel day that I’ve ever had. Besides a slight hiccup with my booking (something got switched somewhere and it wasn’t caught, so I was put on a flight that arrived in Toronto after my connecting flight had already left. No bueno.) which was sorted out pretty easily in Winnipeg, everything went perfectly. Checking in, connection times, and getting through security quickly and easily. So thank you all very much for your prayers!

And in case you were wondering, I think jet lag is a little easier to handle the second time around… or maybe I just knew what to expect this time. 🙂 It helped that I had an overnight flight on my way here (I left Toronto at 11 pm and landed in Europe the next day at 10 am) and thankfully got to sleep for most of it. That made transitioning to the time difference here a lot easier, which was nice.

It’s been so good to be back here at the base! Back in the places where I’ve felt God stirring and moving in my heart so much and back with some of the people who have shared in the journey of DTS with me. I’ve gotten so stoked to see what He has in store for the rest of our time here! This year is going to be awesome. I can’t wait. Because if there’s one thing that I know, it’s that God is super rad and His plans are the best. We’re all pretty excited over here.

We haven’t done a ton of stuff yet, since most of us just arrived on Thursday. We’ve just been hanging out, getting caught up with returning friends and getting to know new ones. My prayer for this time that we have the base all to ourselves is that we would grow together and really become family. I know that God has drawn each of us here for a reason and we’re going to learn so much from each other. And it’s going to be good! So if you all would join me in praying for that – growth and unity as a staff – and that God would draw in the students He has planned for this school. It’s going to be a crazy year, and I’m glad that you’re joining the adventure with me in prayer!

Thank you all for your prayers and support.

God is so good!