Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Just Checking In...

We have done a lot!

Its so crazy to me to think about all that has taken place. I feel completely unworthy and incapable of helping over here, but I know that the Lord is using us to plant seeds and do great things.

Over the weekend we taught a group of missionaries about spiritual disciplines. These are men and women who are living on the front line of the work of the gospel, and the thought that they could benefit from anything I teach them is beyond my comprehension, but they were into it. It was an honor.

Now we are on the campus of the Bible College in Indonesia and it is an equally humbling experience. The campus feels like a mix between Camp Rudolph and MACU. Its a fairly small campus, and is very outdoorsy compared to what we know in America. McCarthy and I have been teaching an intensive on ministering to youth in the local church. I am surprised at how similar youth culture at home and in Indonesia is. We do 4 hour morning sessions which are primarily teaching, then in the afternoon we do open question discussion sessions. Through this we let the students ask questions concerning the material we have taught or ask questions about ministry in general. We have gotten a lot of personal ministry situation questions and I am just amazed at how similar their concerns, struggles, and problems are to ours back home.

One of the coolest things I have noticed as we have been teaching is the way Indonesia Christians are completely enamored by Jesus. I mean, we read through scripture and when we finish they applaud and "ooh" and "aah" at who Jesus was and what he did. It makes me wonder if I am still truly captivated by Jesus. How many times have I read through the scriptures flippantly or rushed? How many times have I read through an account of Jesus and thought... "this again..." or "I know how this goes?" I am praying hard that I would fall back in love with Jesus. This is something I can probably expound on further in an entry of its own.

Anyways, all is well. We are working, teaching, learning, growing. Be home soon!

(Please forgive me if some of this doesn't make much sense. I am typing tired!)

Friday, May 14, 2010


I will probably write a more focused series of blogs on the trip once I get back and process things a little bit better. We aren't even halfway through yet and there is already so much that could be said. Also, we haven't really done much work yet! The first few days (literally) consisted of traveling. Then we spent a couple days in Makassar visiting a family that Jason lived with a few years back when had a long stay in Indonesia.

Spent a lot of yesterday walking around Makassar both during the day and night and saw a lot of interesting things. We visited a huge mosque that has up to 30,000 people come out to it and pray on the holiest Islamic days. We also visited a shrine of the man who is given credit for bringing Islam to this area of Indonesia. At the shrine you can have Islamic holy men pray for you. One of the holy men was telling us that an American woman came over that couldn't have children, they prayed for her, and she got pregnant. I doubt it was true, but it seemed kinda like a story to impress us; since an American was granted a baby, we should to submit to Allah as well. Anyhow, they were all very friendly people.

In fact, everyone here has been friendly. In Indonesia, I am a celebrity (I was told it would be like that.) Kids and adults alike are happy to see us and speak with us. Granted, some of them want to get some money out of us, but others are just genuinely impressed to see an American. It's very weird to me; even though I have done mission trips in Mexico before, this is the first time I have ever felt like the weird foreigner because people stare... almost in awe. They want to talk to you, touch you, spend time with you. Of course, this is not necessarily something I want to embrace as the introvert that I am, then you add to it the language barrier and it gets a little bit awkward. However, God is good and I am seeing a whole other side (literally) of his creation. This experience with these people definitely goes against the grain of the stereotypes (which i never bought into much anyways.)

Some things will probably be discussed in blog series at this point are...
--48 hours on planes!
--McCarthy vs. Wild
--Living in a Muslim Home
--Sweating it out/Leaving Comfort

I don't know... I'm sure more will come as we get into the bulk of work tomorrow. We will be doing some English teaching and some spiritual discipline teaching tomorrow. Then it will be off to do some youth ministry/family ministry teaching next week.

Thanks for your prayers, keep praying for us. Especially for Jason and Chris Mc as they have wives and kids at home who miss them and all that jazz. It adds a different dynamic to the trip for them. Also, thank God that no one has gotten sick! Chris and I are experiencing a little bit of "medicine head" as he calls it from our Malaria meds, but nothing serious! And if you like, pray that as we begin teaching tomorrow that we could be helpful and useful in our work!

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Just Around The Corner...


Indonesia is just around the corner! (Well technically it is completely on the other side of the world, but you know what I mean!)

We will be leaving Monday afternoon out of Norfolk, traveling for a very long time, and then getting to work.

God has been working in amazing ways through my life in the last six months. I have been placed in ministry situations that I never in a million years (or 27 years, I'm not a million years old yet despite what those West Park kids might think!) would have expected to be in. We are talking about working with people and in places that I never would have thought I could be useful in. God has stretched me for sure, and I really wonder what role this Indonesia trip is going to play in all of this. Gosh, I know that is all vague, but I am not about to throw up a bunch of personal details on the internet. My whole point is that when God gets a hold of you and you let him take you where he wants you to go, he really does do incredible things and lets you experience it all! I've been teaching people that for the last 5 years of my professional life, and even years before that, but I am really only now starting to understand it. I will probably say the same thing in five more years! It seems the more you think you understand, the less you truly do!

I hope I will be able to update a few times while I am in Indonesia. I don't know what our internet situation will be like, and quite frankly its not THAT important. The tech nerd in me will have to suffer through!

Keep us in your prayers! Thank you guys so much for all your support, be in prayer, through funds, or in encouragement.