Saturday, January 30, 2016

Macedonia! Part One

I have a lot to tell you about in regards to what is next in my life. This is just part one. 

It all started last January (2015). It was during a week where our teaching was on Destiny by Wick Nease. Wick is an amazing teacher and missionary. He works with orphanages around the world and his story is incredible. As he taught my Kairos class on how to figure out our destiny, he would randomly show us a picture and tell us the story of an orphan he has met. Each day he showed us one or two more orphans and each time I looked into their eyes, my heart ached. It was only half way through the week when I finally let my heart feel what it was feeling and I walked into Erika's (director of Kairos) office and began to sob. God was working in my heart and I couldn't quite explain what was happening. Erika of course knew what was going on and with a loving smile told me, "I knew this week was going to impact you." Glad someone knew what was going on ;)

Later that day at the end of the youth service at the church I was interning at, God began pulling at my heart through the songs we sang. One song in particular spoke out to me. 

"You make me brave. 
You call me out beyond the shore into the waves.
You make me brave.
No fear can hinder now the promises you made."

I knew in my heart that night that God was  calling me to something. I had that feeling even before Kairos started that something big was coming after Kairos ended. And that night God was reawakening that feeling of expectancy. And in all honesty, it terrified me. Because what I was beginning to get more answers on scared me. God was calling me to a place where I may be traveling alone. All my travel and mission trips were always with a large group of people and I could trustingly follow my trip leaders through the scary airports and strange streets of a foreign land. And now God was calling me to something that would most likely mean going alone. Now, I know I'm not "alone". God is always with me. But when I mean alone, I mean with no one to follow.
And that is very scary to me. I don't like airports.

That night I said yes to God. I was scared but God would make me brave. He would provide what I needed to accomplish what He was calling me to do. 

I continued the year of Kairos all the while holding in my heart the desire to work with orphans and continue in missions. But God is faithful and continued to remind me of this new passion.

I saw the movie twice last year. It's called 'The Drop Box' and it is about a pastor in South Korea. He created a safe box in the wall of his house that mothers could safely leave their infants that they no longer wanted. Hundreds of babies die each year on the streets of Seoul. Most are abandoned and die before they are found. This movie touched my soul. I cried both times I watched it. It kept saying something inside me, reminding me that this is what I want to do.

I did research to try and find organizations that worked primarily with orphans and abandoned babies. 

And then I found one. Anchor of Hope-Romania. They work with orphans, young mothers and abandoned and sick babies in hospitals. This is literally my dream come true mission work.

I stayed in contact with AOH throughout the remainder of my time in Kairos and for a couple months afterwards. Their responses to my emails were scattered and took sometimes over a month to get an answer to my question. I hold no hard feelings, I understand things are crazy doing what they do. A couple months ago I was ready to begin my fund raising and I started to share with those around me my plans. But I was still waiting on some important answers. Weeks went by and no word came from AOH. 

During this time of waiting, I was becoming confused and frustrated. I thought this was what God was calling me to do. I so desperately wanted to go to Romania and love on those cute kids and hold those unwanted babies that I would want to take home in a heart beat.

I kept praying, asking God to show me what His plan was because this was taking so long. I was trying to be patient and trust in his timing. I've learned as of late that patience comes and goes with me.
One Sunday before church started I got a text. I get these texts every day and they always include a different verse. That Sunday the verse was:

Proverbs 3:5
 "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight."

 I thought how great a verse it was and went on my way to church.
That day at church a lady who I hadn't had the chance to meet yet came up to me and introduced herself. Her name is Faith. We chatted for a second and just as she was leaving, she stopped and faced me again. She told me that this was a good verse and proceeded to say Proverbs 3:5. It took everything in me not to burst out in tears. My heart was pounding a loud YES. 

I went home that day and seriously took that verse and thought it through and prayed it through. I was giving everything up to God and putting it into His hands and His timing. I prayed that prayer with all my heart. Just a few days later I was scrolling through facebook and that's when I first saw Reign's trip to Macedonia. My heart leaped instantly. I quickly read the information on the trip and was drawn in. Then I found out that my trip leader from Scotland was leading this trip. Even better because Matt is awesome!

That weekend I went on a young adult retreat. There was lots of worship and time of reflection and teachings. It was a great weekend. I focused on God's direction in my life. This trip to Macedonia would be so amazing. But what about Romania? 

Well, all weekend this phrase kept being said. "Wait, there is something better." And I kept thinking, maybe that's what God is telling me. To wait on Romania because Macedonia is coming first. 

Now, I say all this because my original "plan" was go to Romania in March! And now Macedonia was March. And I  felt God speaking through our speaker, "Wait...there is something better."

To Be Continued...

Here is a link to the Drop Box Film. Check it out. And if you are able to somehow watch it. It's an amazing film.

I do still plan on going to Romania and working with AOH. They finally did email me back the other day. There is someone new taking over emails and responding. So when I do pick that back up, it shouldn't take months to get an answer! Haha...

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