Friday, November 30, 2007

The end of November....

It's hard to believe that today is the last day in November. Starting tomorrow, I can officially say that I am moving next month. Well, that is provided that my funding is in by then. However, that was the date the was given to us back in April and I trust that if God wants me in Venezuela by "next month" then it will happen.

I have been in Ohio for two weeks now and life seems to be settling down. I have been working part time for my friend's computer company and taking care of odds and ends that I need to do.

Exciting things that have happened in the past 2 weeks...
  • I was able to go back to the school I taught at and spend some time with the teachers and some of the students. I didn't realize how much I miss that school until I went back.
  • My brother in law, Erich, received his kidney transplant last Saturday. He had been waiting for 4 years for an available kidney and he finally got it. He is still in the hospital but he is doing well.
  • My friends in Venezuela gave me an early Christmas present today... my own Venezuelan cell phone. My new phone number is 0414-639-5411 (or if you are calling me from the United States... 011-58-414-639-5411). Now, you cannot call me until I actually get to Venezuela because I am not there to answer the phone. However, once I am there, I look forward to hearing from everyone frequently!!

Before I leave...

Drop me a note or give me a call. I would love to hear from everyone and see how things are going. Take care.

Scripture for the week...

Hebrews 11:1- Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see.

If you have never read Hebrews 11, read it. It describes the faith of many people from the OT and then gives us some interesting verses at the end.

Hebrews 11:39- There were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised.

This verse, by itself, would make us wonder if we really want to put our faith in God, believing that He would break a promise. However, that is not the last verse of the chapter. It continues..

Hebrews 11:40- God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.

God has bigger plans that we could even think. Sometimes we put our faith in God in what we think He has planned for us. However, His plans are even bigger. This reminds me of Ephesians 3:20, which says, "Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us..."

Our thoughts of what God's plans are may be right on, but if God changes the plans, don't become upset or get flustered. Just remember that His plans might be bigger than you can ever imagine. Have faith.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

CIT Video

Here is a video from the pictures of the past 3 months at CIT. Enjoy!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Give thanks with a greatful heart

What do you have to be thankful for? I am thankful that I am home with my family. I am thankful that nobody in my family is in the hospital right now. I am thankful that my training at CIT is finished. I am thankful for my church, Hudson Community Chapel, and all of the people there who have been supportive of me and my ministry in Venezuela. I am thankful for Iglesia Bautista Cristo Vive, the church I attended in North Carolina. I am thankful for Iglesia Filadelfia, my church in Maracaibo and for all of the people there who have helped me with preparations for my relocation. There is so much more that I am thankful for this year, but above all, I am thankful to God for my salvation through Jesus Christ, for forgiving me from my sins, for giving me eternal life, and for giving me the opportunity to serve Him.

Scripture of the week...

Psalm 100:

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his, we are the people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever. his faithfulness continues through all generations.

Remember to give thanks and praise to our Lord this Thanksgiving.

Happy Thanksgiving!!

Friday, November 16, 2007

To God be the Glory...

God has brought me to the end of another journey. My time at CIT is over. All the classes are done. All reflection papers have been turned in. All evaluations have been completed. I even received my graduation diploma! My car is packed up. Goodbyes have been said. I will be driving home tomorrow. Even through all of this, I am reminded that God is sovereign above all and that all of this has been in His plan and in His timing. He has taken care of me during almost 3 months here and has taught me a lot about Himself, about being His child, about how to love Him and serve Him better, and about how to let Him take control.

One way He did this was through a challenge He gave me yesterday. I have been attending a Spanish speaking church during my time here in North Carolina. All services have been completely in Spanish. It has been great worshipping and learning more about Jesus with the Hispanics in the area while being able to practice my Spanish skills. Yesterday, I spoke in the church, presenting information about my ministry. Did I mention this was a Spanish speaking church? Yes, I had to give my presentation in Spanish. I was extremely nervous about this and have been for about the past week. I prepared all of my materials in Spanish and wrote out what I was going to say. I was ready. I prayed that God would give me the words to say because my Spanish isn't good enough for me to do this on my own. When I gave the presentation, I know I made some mistakes, but I don't think I messed up too much. There were about 30 adults and at least 20 children in the church. They seemed very receptive and seemed to understand what I was trying to say. Before coming to NC, I had prayed that God would provide me with a Hispanic church that I could attend and perhaps allow me to tell them about ministry in Vzla. God provided that and allowed me to speak. I just hadn't quite realized when I was praying back in August that I would have to present in Spanish. However, I believe this has boosted my confidence in the fact that I can, with the power of the Holy Spirit, use this language to speak to people about something I am passionate about... serving God where He is leading me.

To God be the Glory!!!

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Drive-In movies are back....sorta

Tonight, one of my fellow students had a brilliant idea- let's watch a movie, drive-in style. So a bunch of us gathered outside the apartment buildings, sitting on couches which were brought out from the apartments, outside, under the stars and falling leaves, in the chill of the 41°F (6°C) night air, and watched "Ratatouilli" (had to watch something the kids would watch). It was fun sitting outside, sipping hot chocolate or hot tea and eating popcorn while feeling like we were in a drive-in movie theater, with the 12 foot screen on the back of the apartment laundry room building and speakers mounted up on one of the pickup trucks in the parking lot behind us. When the movie was over and the children went to bed, we played a worship dvd and watched a worship concert for a while. What a night in God's creation, listening to people praising Him!

Monday, November 5, 2007

Time flies when you're....

taking classes!

It seems like not that long ago that I drove down from Ohio to come take classes here at CIT. Now, I only have a week and a half left to go. We finished another 2 classes last week. Teams class ended on Thursday and Teaching ESL was a 2 day class on Friday and Saturday (yes, I had class on Saturday). At this class, we learned how to determine a person's level of English and how to being teaching them the English that they need and at their level. This was a certifying class- we each received a certificate of completion after this class :-)
This week's class is called "Sharpening Your Interpersonal Skills". This class runs through Friday. We will be learning communication techniques and ways of relating to people better. One thing we talked about today in class was how Jesus was able to relate to people on both a head level and a heart level and how He knew which type of communication each person needed. If we are trying to be more like Jesus, we need to learn how to distinguish how to best communicate with others.
Scripture passage for the week:
Colossians 3:12-14
Therefore, as God's chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience. Bear with each other and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity.
I would also like to ask for prayer this week for a few different items:
  1. Gramma is back in the hospital with what they think is an infection.
  2. I will be speaking to a Hispanic Church on Wednesday, Nov 14 about what God is doing in Venezuela, and I will be doing this in Spanish.
  3. Preparation for my ministry and service in Venezuela as I am nearing the 2 month mark of my going.

Thank you for your continued prayers. God bless you.