Tuesday, December 27, 2016

1 week and 1 day to go...

So here we are! One week and a day to go! We depart Denver around 7am on Thursday January 5th. We are deep in the thick of packing and cleaning, and deciding what to take and what not to take. As well as trying to say goodbyes well, and continue to work on our partner development (support raising). We are excited, ready, scared, and a little anxious.

We are continuing to learn so much about this new life we are embarking on. Two of which I would love to share here.

The first one is the blessing of having a support team. Not only is it how we make our living as missionaries from financial support from those who believe in what we are doing, bringing Jesus in the way of design to Cambodia. I am also learning that it is so much more than that! It's having people who are willing to pray. People who are willing to encourage. People willing to meet a need when we have a need, and maybe most importantly it's people that are willing to remind us that they are thinking of us, and even more importantly praying for us. What a huge blessing!!

The second one came from scripture I was reading yesterday. Here's what stood out to me:

Psalms 1:1-3
"How happy is the man who does not follow the advice of the wicked or take the path of sinners, or join the group of mockers. Instead, his delight is in the LORD's instruction, and he meditates on it day and night. His like a tree planted besides streams of water that bears fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither. Whatever he does prospers."

- The last part of this verse we hear all the time as pastors pray it over their congregation, and we have had many people speak/pray it over us this last year. The thing that stood out to me was that the verse 3 that we hear all the time comes after the description of a man who sticks close to the Lord and finds his delight in Him, the fruit of that is being like the tree we hear about so often.

Psalms 2:11
"Serve the LORD in reverential awe and rejoice with trembling."

- I find it so easy to get comfortable with God, to get comfortable and forget how awesome He is, and how big He is. Great reminder for me!

Psalm 3: 3-5
"But you are a shield around me, my glory, and the One who lifts my head. I cry aloud to the LORD, and He answers me from His holy mountain. I lie down and sleep; I wake again because the LORD sustains me."

- Our God protects, hears and cares. He is sufficient and worth any sacrifice, because He give life.

Psalm 4: 7-8
"You have put more joy in my heart than they have when their grain and new wine abound. I will both lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, LORD, make me live in safety."

- He fills me with joy, and He gives us His safety wherever we go.

My prayer is that you are encouraged by this as much as I was last night. Be encouraged as we enter this new year, that God is for you. He is big, He is might, He hears you, and He cares. He fills you with joy and He is sufficient. So whatever you have ahead of you in 2017 remember these promises, remember He is worth it, and He is with you.

I know I will be clinging to these sweet verses as we prepare for and eventually step on to that air plane on January 5th.

Friday, December 2, 2016

December 2nd, 2016 34 days to go...

Well here we are! December second. We are all tired from traveling, and schedules being off, and some days are just off right now, and that is OK.

We are in the beginnings of organizing, and packing, and preparing for the final move on January 5th, and a little relieved we aren't going anywhere until then. We have been apartment hunting, and emailing. We have been researching more, and learning.

We are trying to feel all the feels of moving, and all the beauties of Christmas. We have our stockings hung, ornaments on the tree, our nativity out, I am addressing Christmas cards and have begun Christmas shopping, and soon cookie baking. We love this time of year, and don't want to miss it in our rush to get ready to move to the other side of the globe. We are also ready. Ready to move, ready to be done waiting and transitioning.

This time of year is wonderful end to this year of preparing, transitioning, learning, and dreaming. It is wonderful because of the reminder of Jesus. I love that we get to celebrate His birth, and His coming to rescue us, right before we leave. Jesus is why we are doing what we are doing. He is why we are going to Cambodia, to share Him with others who have never heard of Him.

The last few years around Christmas time God has been pointing out a different aspect of the coming of Jesus that I haven't thought too much about this year. The last several years it has had to do Mary, having a child and being a mom. The trust Mary and Joseph had to have to trust God to the point of having Jesus. The way they had to trust and love each other.

This year God has already began to highlight something different I have never had highlighted before the anticipation. The anticipation of Jesus. Our greatest gift of all. Between Amirah asking me everyday if tomorrow is Christmas, and our own anticipation of our big move, I find myself really relating to what the wise men must have felt. Knowing the king they had been waiting for was coming. The way Mary must have felt being at the end of her pregnancy knowing Jesus, God's son was coming. The way many scholars of the day must of felt knowing God had been silent for so long, and wondering if the Messiah would ever come.

This year I feel the anticipation. I feel the need to soak it in, to soak in the excitement of Jesus coming! I have been noticing how we prepare for Christmas, this whole advent season of preparing to celebrate Jesus is a lot of work, and a lot of planning. Much like the ones who knew the times when Jesus came may have felt waiting for their Messiah, their King of Kings. It has already added this whole new thing to Christmas for me. An anticipation that I haven't had in a long time. Anticipating celebrating Jesus' birth. My savior and my king. The greatest miracle of all time coming to pass.

Jesus is our all, He is our everything, He is worth laying it all down for. It is such a comfort to know that Jesus came for us, to rescue us, and restore our relationship with God. What a miracle that God would love us this much, and that He had two people, Mary and Joseph that trusted Him so well to allow Him to fulfill His plans through them.

I pray that you will feel the anticipation of celebrating Jesus' birth season.