Monday, July 1, 2013

Guyana Mission Trip: Day 2

After a long night of warm welcoming festivities, everyone was up bright and early to begin preparing for our first day of real spiritual activities. We went during one of Guyana's rain seasons (rain/dry season will probably feel so strange to me..), and I came out of my sleep hearing the hardest rain I've seen. At first I thought maybe it was a thunderstorm, but their periods of rain just tend to come down really, REALLY hard. I was constantly on edge because I really hate thunderstorms, but luckily for me we never had a single one the whole time we were there. After a while the intense rain became really calming..

In the morning was Lady M's Dialysis workshop service, where she spoke about the importance of going to the doctor and getting a diagnosis for whatever sickness you may have, and not to stay ignorant (which if you lack the money or time to go to the doctor, you might have a tendency of doing!).

(Cut for those who aren't interested in reading about this stuff)
x-posted to A·M·A·N·I 

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Guyana Mission Trip Day 1

Backtracking to my mission trip at the end of 2012, I remember the anticipation building up to the moment we were to leave. I had managed to get Christmas Day off (the night of my flight), and an early shift on Christmas Eve so I can spend the evening with my family like I traditionally do. While I lost that 150% holiday pay, I was glad that I had time to properly rest and finish preparing my suitcases and stuff.

The consecration/fast that we did in preparation for the trip was tedious-- 1 meal a day for the entire month of December (though as a missionary, our actual food fast stopped a week before leaving, so we wouldn't be drained). There was round-the-clock prayer, where every member or supporter had a specific hour in the day that they were supposed to pray. I know I did not do this perfectly-- there were plenty of times that I forgot to pray or didn't pray as long as I was supposed to, or didn't study like I was supposed to. Nevertheless, when the day came to leave, I had so much excitement in my bones. When I left my house I could barely walk to the bus and to the train without feeling an intense desire to just praise my way to the airport. The anticipation was building faster and the anointing that was on my church's group seemed so potent that it was hard to really get sidetracked from the assignment at hand.

More videos + photos under the cut~
x-posted to my other blog A·M·A·N·I

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

"A Necessary Trip"

Sunday I walked into church to find that one of my pastor's good friends was preaching in his place for morning service. My pastor is a very anointed man of God and so by default, you already know that if one of his colleagues preach, they got a little something going on themselves. Occasionally when things like this happen, you sort of know that a message is bound to 'click'. Confirmations happen so often when people are on one accord-- even if it's the first time you've spoken in years. It's amazing the way the Holy Spirit works, when you engulf yourself in God there is nothing less than exciting in Him. I'm hoping to bring myself to that point too.

The message for that morning was "A necessary trip".

The speaker pulled out Jeremiah 18:1-6, as well as Ezekiel 37:1-14. He also had a scripture from Nehemiah, which I forgot which @___@ (and it's a shame because it connects with what I'm about to say in the next part of the post..)
He began to speak about how there are times in our lives where we feel that the specific path we were brought on was a wasted effort, a 'waste of time', how we may initially regret the decision and was able to put that lost time towards something 'more worthy in our eyes. Maybe it wasn't even an action that was already done, maybe it is something forthcoming and we personally may deem it optional or not important and something we can get lazy on. But regardless of what we think and what we may feel, God is trying to lift us up and show us something in those moments.

In those specific scriptures, the Lord told Jeremiah to go to this potter's house, and brought Ezekiel to a valley full of dead and dry bones and showed them something powerful. To Jeremiah he stressed his desire to shape and mold Israel like the clay on the wheel, if only he was allowed to. Oh, the possibilities, if only his people allowed Him to work in their lives!

To Ezekiel, He brought him to this empty valley full of nothing of dry bones, and asked him, "Son of man, can these bones live?" As the conversation went on, He showed Ezekiel the limitless power of His word, how Ezekiel commanded the bones to once again be put together and covered by flesh and blood, and be given the breath of life, going from a valley full of bones to a living, breathing army.

This message was definitely food for thought. Certainly God tries to catch my attention and bring me to a new place in Him. I know this because there has been more than one time where he tried to bring me to a place and I pushed myself away. If only I could hear him! If only I can sense him better... this is exactly why I want to bring myself to a certain place before the end of the year. I want to develop this sensitivity to him.

As morning service closed out, that "click" moment happened. Pastor announced that we would be on a congregational consecration starting the 4th to the 16th, reading the whole book of Nehemiah. Touching up on the Word that was spoken before, he said that with such limited communication the speaker 'couldn't have known what God had in store for us' and that the sermon was confirmation to what He is about to give us in the next phase. We have our fasting, our Word, our prayer sessions (one on Sunday mornings, one at the church on Tues evening like usual, and then a conference line prayer another time during the week in the evening).

So now, I'm 5 days into the consecration and learning the story of Nehemiah. There are a lot of Old Testament scriptures that you barely hear of, for me Nehemiah is one of them, and as I'm reading (on Chapter 5 today), I'm seeing the place where God wants us as a congregation and how their togetherness is making them this sort of unpenetrable shield, even though they're in the midst of working. Building with one hand while a weapon in the other...
I'll get into this further as I go deeper into the chapters.

Monday, August 13, 2012

Write It Down, Make It Happen

For the past year I've been hearing this message, and the more I see it the more I'm convinced that God is prodding me with a stick or something.

"Write it Down, Make It Happen."
"Write the Vision, and Make it Plain."

So far this past year have been tumultuous when it comes to my faith. Change is a lengthy and a rocky process when it comes to your lifestyle. There has been many times where I feel like I have failed and wanted to give up. At the same time these '#fail' moments have given me a chance to see a different side of myself, or realize what I have subconsciously buried within myself.

Not getting too deep with that (you can probably find it on my faith blog later on), this message has been put before me on many occasions.

The biblical scripture that this theme comes from is Habakkuk 2:2-3 where it says: "And the Lord answered me, and said, Write the vision, and make it plain upon tables, that he may run that readeth it. For the vision is yet for an appointed time, but at the end it shall speak, and not lie: though it tarry, wait for it; because it will surely come, it will not tarry."

The first time I heard of it, was through BronzeGoddess01's channel. She started a small series called "Write it Down, Make it Happen Campaign".

She had a couple of videos on this 'campaign' of hers, and it's still an ongoing thing (after all, these things fall into place over time) but she, personally, have been receiving some pretty huge responses since she's started.
When I first watched them I was like 'cool, I'll get on this ASAP' but of course, I've been procrastinating. I haven't actually gotten a journal yet xD

But then this message keeps popping up... last month a sister from my church made a video about this message... and then last WEEK my pastor was talking about it as well! I swear, when you get into spirituality and stuff, you start picking up stuff that sometimes feel so weird and the far-fetched will occur with ease.

Whether you believe in a higher being, or you simply believe in yourself, faith is such a strong and important part of our lives. SO, I'll be officially starting this for myself. I'll be digging through the bunch of unwanted stationary sets my great aunt gives me every Christmas, hoping one of them has a small journal or something inside LOL. Otherwise I'll be pressing my way to finding a nice little book to work with. No more procrastination. If I have to be ghetto and use post-it notes to get it started, then.... xD;

(Reposted from my main blog)

Sunday, August 12, 2012

August Update

Time keeps moving too fast...

My sister's wedding was last month, as well as a convention I worked at for the weekend, and so much church activity as well... I've been procrastinating with updates on this blog. I've been trying hard to be up to date on my main blog, as well.

I had failed the 21-day consecration I was put on, and for a while I was feeling really down about it. It caused me to look at myself in a certain light because of what I went through and how I handled it.

Overall, I wasn't enthusiastic about it. That attitude is what did me in in such a short amount of time... I remember having told the 1st Lady, "I'd rather be on the all-water fast instead of this!" and hearing myself say that revealed a very selfish part of me. It opened my eyes a bit, and I know the Holy Ghost helped me see it as well, to see myself in such a way.

My 5 favorite things, I later realized, impacted so many levels of my flesh. It attacked each of my 5 senses... it attacked my carnal being, particularly my emotional side, as well as my overall self-identity. It targeted everything and I see exactly why God had assigned that to us. I see how that would impact our women's ministry. I saw.

When I realized these things, and I thought it over, and I prayed on it, I tried to pull myself together to at least finish it off. During our Tuesday night prayers at the church, I broke down and simply cried in the middle of prayer. Just straight cried. I was grieved because of the way I acted about it all, that I didn't take it seriously and at that point it was really hard to catch up and get the full experience I should've gotten. Not only that, but, the temptations that rose up when I did seriously try was too much to bear. A part of me was shattered and I could not keep my composure. Not long after, did I break the consecration again.

The only thing that I can say about my failure, is that I learned so much of myself. It brought out a part of me that I kept myself in denial about, things that I just straight-up ignored and buried for the sake of my emotional health. It brought up a nasty spirit that was dwelling in myself. Through that realization, I see where I need to concentrate on myself.

I plan to redo this consecration before we fly off to Guyana for our mission trip, as well as the fast that I was supposed to put myself on back in June. My concentration for the rest of this year is to focus on my strength spiritually, my relationship to God and my sensitivity to the Holy Spirit, not only in preparation for the epic stuff that is about to go down in South America, but to seriously push myself to make the lifestyle changes I need...

Saturday, July 7, 2012

OOTD~ 7/7/12

(bit of a repost from my regular blog)
Today I went out to a birthday celebration for the shepherd mother of our church~ it was supposedly near 100 degrees today, though it didn't really feel like it. Thank God it was mostly cloudy otherwise I would've baked.

Hat: Papaya ($5 clearance)
Dress: Rainbow's ($17)
Shoes: Square One ($5 clearance)
Accessories: from mom~

The top is held up by some straps to do a small halter neck thing, the straps had ethnic looking beads and stuff so I wanted to add a bit more by wearing my shell necklaces.

I got a LOT of compliments, though my 1st Lady did gently remind me that my shoulder/back area should've been covered by a shawl or something lol. She was poking fun more than anything though~

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Consecration, Day 4

"Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts: And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting."

(Psalms 139:23-24)

There is something about asking God to search your insides. It's a way of surrendering; while He already knows what is in our hearts and in our minds, I feel that there is something about letting yourself go so He can work in you.

Surrender and Submission-- two things I had to learn as I was tarrying for the holy spirit. A lot of the time those two terms are seen as something negative. When you think of surrendering your heart and mind, you think of brainwashing. I had to learn that it is anything but.

This is what I love about my faith that some don't understand. It's never brainwashing when it's done in righteousness, as it should. (Sadly, you have those who think they're doing right by forcing faith upon others.) No matter what, you'll always have free will. God gave that to his creatures and he will not take that away. Every step you take is ultimately your choice to do so. If I don't want God to do anything for me? Then he won't. He'll just be there waiting for me to say 'Yes.' (But obviously I'm not trying to just sit around and be spiritually dead in the meantime~)

So with surrendering and submitting myself, I'm telling the Lord, God, you know what's in there; here I am, you know what's best, help me remove any impurities and strengthen all the good parts. Strengthen my spirit-man, help be conquer the very things that used to oppress me. Continue to work on me God, I look forward to the day where I am no longer a 'work-in-progress', but a complete masterpiece.