Thursday, September 18, 2008

He is my strength!

Yesterday, we had our reunion meeting with the mission team from Misión Ohio and with Pr. Raúl. It was a great time of getting together to share stories and testimonies. It seemed to start out a little serious but very quickly eased up to be a time of fun and fellowship. We then talked about the presentation that was going to take place during the Wednesday night prayer service. Of course, coming from a different perspective, Pr. Raúl wanted to hear my view on the mission trip and then told me he wanted me to speak during the presentation to the church- and to speak IN SPANISH. I begged him not to make me speak (Imagine me begging) but he was insistant- saying if I didn't, he was sending me back to Ohio on Sunday. Of course, he was joking, but I knew, as nervous as I would be, I would have to speak in front of the whole church about my perspective of the mission trip.

During the day today, I wrote out (in English and Spanish- but mostly in Spanish- and with some help from a good friend- gracias Gabriel!) what I was going to say. I reviewed it and read it and reviewed it and read it. The more I thought about it, the more nervous I became. By the time I was in the church, getting ready for the presentation, I was extremely nervous. I was so nervous I was shaking and felt like vomiting. I had butterflies in my stomach- fighting to the death. I wanted to run. I wanted to leave. I was weak. However, it is when we are weak that HE IS STRONG! Several people prayed for me before we went up front for the presentation. I know this was powerful. Although I did not feel any less nervous when they finished praying, I knew it was in God's hands, not mine.
When the presentation began, they called all the missionaries from the team up on the altar. We remained up there for the whole presentation, while each person gave their brief testimony of the trip. When it was getting close to my time to speak, the pastor standing behind me told me and a few others that due to the time, we needed to cut our testimonies very short. OK with me- the less I have to talk the better.

Finally, it was my turn to speak. I was prepared to have a translator at a microphone in case I got stuck and needed help. Right before I began speaking, I suddenly felt calm. I wasn't nearly as nervous as I had been just minutes before. I began speaking in a calm voice- no shaking, no stomach ache, no visable signs of nervousness. I was at peace. The Spirit of God came and calmed my nerves so I could speak to the congregation of the church. I did not need my translator; I was able to say my whole presentation in Spanish.

I thank those who were praying for me and I thank God for coming to me and being my strength when I needed Him most.

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