1. Why Full-Time Missions? (Part 3 of 3) Here’s Part 1 & Part 2.

    One of the reasons we decided to do the Restorers DTS was because of it’s connection with The Tribe. “The Tribe” is a ministry that hopes to inspire, connect, and equip people to live as lifestyle missionaries in their daily lives. (Read more about the vision at http://www.ywamtribe.com/vision/)

    That vision was one of the foundational aspects of my relationship and friendship with Hannah! The Tribe is a ministry that was started by the leaders of our DTS, Matt and Mina (along with a few friends from around the world), that focused on bringing this aspect of church and community into YWAM to use it as a tool for evangelism, disciple-making, and long-term application of the missions-DNA that so many YWAMers receive during DTS and find it difficult to carry when they return home.

    At the conclusion of our DTS, we made a choice to join YWAM on staff with The Tribe.

    When we discovered that Matt and Mina were planning on going to Korea for two months after our DTS, we felt peace to go with them to work with churches and YWAM alumni.

    We’ve been here for the last couple months working with those churches, planning and dreaming for Restorers DTS, facilitating a Missional Community plant, and even the initial planning for a mobile application! We’ve also been blessed by new friendships, time with family, (especially Hannah’s grandparents, who are housing us!), and learning a lot about communication. As we’re transitioning into full time missions, we want to be diligent about growing in communication not only with our friends, families, and supporters, but with each other as well.

    We’re being challenged to grow in a lot of different ways personally, as is often the case whenever you’re outside your comfort zone. Reading books on parenting has also been a source of personal reflection and growth as we ask ourselves some tough questions about parenting.

    Here’s a quick summary of the ministries and projects that we’re joining at YWAM Kona:

    The Tribe

    Though The Tribe began before we joined YWAM, it feels like such a part of Hannah and my DNA. It’s the combination of our experiences in ministry and our passion to see the church practically living out the great commission within the individual members of the body of Christ. 

    Our heart is to connect and resource the global body of Christ to start simple communities of prayer and blessing and provoke each other to live lives of service, generosity, community, and love.

    They live this out in communities on a mission—to disciple their local communities and each other in radical and Christ-like ways.

    For more information, check out our website: http://ywamtribe.com

    Restorers DTS

    From within the heart of The Tribe, Restorers DTS was born—a 6-month DTS whose heart is to restore—individuals, families, communities, cities, nations, and the world. 

    It is a DTS focused on the reality that DTS is just the first step in a journey of becoming a disciple and discipler for Christ for LIFE. We aim to equip people to understand their identities in Christ, that they are fully loved, and that they are invited by God to join Him on His mission to restore the world.

    We are both part of the team dreaming, praying, and planning for it. The next one is in January of 2015 and we are extremely excited for it!

    A Global YWAM App

    As a staff member of The Tribe, I’ve taken leadership over a project to bring YWAM into the mobile age. We’ve been given access to some tools that will allow us to rapidly develop apps not just for the Global YWAM family, but for individual bases to serve as a means of remaining connected to the thousands of YWAMers all over the globe who aren’t in a career missionary role with YWAM.

    For me personally, it’s been confirmation of some of the things that God has placed in my heart and I’m excited for the journey and growth that this project will bring. 

    So that’s pretty much it! A long, long version of what we’ve been wrestling with and doing for the past two or three months. PLEASE call/email/message us with questions or just say hello! We’ll be in LA for a few weeks in Aug/Sep so maybe we’ll be able to see you personally! 

    - j

    (Here’s Part 1 & Part 2)

     

  2. Why Full-Time Missions? (Part 2) Click here to read Part 1.

    Significance.

    Worth.

    We are created to crave and desire both. It’s a quest that comes up a lot in my life. 

    It amazes me how uniquely everyone pursues these things in their lives the more I learn about people and life. It gets truly beautiful when people experience worth based on the unconditional love that only God the Father can give and from this reality are free to pursue the things of their heart. We get to break free from “the spirit of slavery” that produces fear, as Paul refers to it in Romans 8. It’s only from this place of adoption that we’re able to cry “아빠 (Abba), Father!”, receiving our sonship, and be freed from fear; fear of missing out, of failure, of ridicule, of disappointment, of ruin, and so much more. 

    Here are my first shaky steps to freedom; from post-grad to parenthood:

    Right after we got married, Hannah and I went to Korea to teach H.S. English Literature at a Christian private school a couple hours outside Seoul. The primary goal was to experience life together in a new place on a new adventure. For us both it was an extremely educational time. Hannah discovered that not only did she love to inspire kids, but that she also excelled at the administrative tasks of a teacher. On the other hand, while I enjoyed the inspirational aspect, the administrative load and leadership that was difficult to work with were incredibly draining and discouraging. 

    In those two years, I was living and acting from a place of hurt and disappointment at myself and God for the perceived failures of my college years. But because it’s not natural for me to process through my emotions and understand the things going on in my heart, it took those two years of frustrating circumstances alongside my best friend who I was growing in love with more every day, to help me come out of that place and emerge whole and with faith for greater maturity with God. 

    It was in the midst of that time of healing that God put in my heart the desire to return to YWAM Kona with Hannah. I wanted Hannah to experience DTS and see that part of my heart that was so core to my identity, but at the same time I questioned my true desire to go back. Was I choosing out of selfishness and a desire to run away or to have a sense of more freedom in my life? I can’t know for sure. What we know now is that we believe that it was the right choice for us and one that was God-inspired.

    We definitely weren’t thinking about joining YWAM full-time, at first. We were going to serve and to set aside a focused amount of time to pursue God and decide the next step in our lives together. 

    To be honest, doing a DTS again was a tough time for me in a lot of ways. Two years of not living with God as the central aspect of my life meant two years of bad habits I had to detox from. The idea of laying down one’s rights is nice, but actually living that out is a painful habit to grow in. Fortunately, because of my year with YWAM before college, it didn’t feel like the first time. It felt like I was re-exercising muscles I once had. 

    Towards the end of lecture was when I began to feel a growing sense of direction for our family. I wanted to be rooted in a place where I could be discipled, grow in leadership, and grow as a father. Because I didn’t want to force Hannah into anything, I waited until she could pray and process through it. I also prepared myself for the hard truth that what I imagined for our future may not be the best thing for us as a family.

    Then outreach happened and we found out that Hannah was pregnant four days after we landed in Africa. Those two months were tough for Hannah, but I’d say I took part in that struggle as an outreach leader and simultaneously, a new father-to-be caring for a very hormonal wife. The experience put Hannah and me through the fire. There were many trying evenings filled with the tears and frustrations of tough conversations about calling and responsibility. 

    I felt lost and helpless, caught between a wife who was craving stability and the comfort of friends and family, while I dealt with the growing conviction that I was called into a life of obedience that didn’t necessarily guarantee the comforts of life as I knew it. 

    We stood at the familiar precipice of walking out in faith. We looked down and saw the shame of failure and opening ourselves to criticism. We looked to our sides (and on Facebook) and saw what appeared like success everywhere else around us. What we necessarily couldn’t see (and still can’t see) is the guarantee that there would be something catching us after we made that leap into the unknown.

    Taking that leap off the precipice of faith would mean that we would have to trust God and others by asking for support! It would mean opening ourselves up to being perceived as people that are dependent on others for our well-being. That would really posture us to swallow our pride and be vulnerable and transparent with people in our lives. That’s a little bit terrifying!

    We returned to Kona and set a date for us to make a final decision through prayer and reflection. 

    Near the end of that month, we concluded that this was where God wanted us to be for at least the next 3-5 years. There was no dramatic sign or audible voice of God, there was only peace. We would start with YWAM in Kona, and the ministry we would join is The Tribe. 

    So have I attained this freedom? To a certain extent, yes, we walked out in faith and jumped off the cliff! We’re falling with our yet-to-born child and we’re trying to figure things out as we’re falling and we know that God loves us and that we’re following Him. But we’re still learning and having to choose daily to live out of confidence in our worth in the Father’s perspective. We’re learning how hard it is to constantly focus our attention not on the things we lack and the unstable nature of our lives, but instead, to focus on the stability that comes from finding our significance and worth in the fact that we are precious children of God and that he has a plan and a purpose for us far greater than anything we can imagine or conceive. 

    He asks for relationship and from that relationship, obedience. Obedience isn’t easy—it’s not always something we WANT to do, but man, we can achieve it through understanding our identity in Christ. It is the only real way.

    - j

    Click here to read Part 1.

    Part 3 explains what ministries and projects we’re involved with at YWAM Kona (coming soon).

     

  3. Why Full-Time Missions? (Part 1)

    What does it look like to live in the confidence that you are completely and fully loved? I’ve been wrestling through this question because of these past 6 months of Discipleship Training School.

    It means making life choices based on the honest convictions of your heart. 

    It means not being afraid to be criticized or looked down upon by others for unorthodox life decisions made from that place of love.

    It means giving up the right to be offended by others and loving them without restraint, instead.

    It means you are free to operate from a place of confidence.

    It means accomplishing things beyond what you thought you were capable of and not killing yourself in the process, but rather being filled with joy in the process of it. 

    This lifestyle is accessible to us all! The challenge is in deprogramming our minds from how most of us have been living and have been taught to live. We believe that we deserve punishment for our mistakes and refuse to accept love we deem unjust. Therefore, we refuse to give love to those we deem undeserving. 

    “Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.”

    These things are on my mind a lot these days as Hannah and I pray and dream together about our children. Who do we want them to be? What identity do we want to model and impart to them in the precious few most impressionable years we have with them? What are we most afraid of? 

    When we reflect with our friends about our own childhoods, we marvel at how seemingly impossible it is not to inflict some kind of psychological or developmental harm as a parent. We’re afraid that our children won’t be whole because of our shortcomings. Paradoxically, this fear is also the root of inflicting the very hurts we experienced in our own childhoods. The fruit of those fears in parenting is either control and manipulation or a lack of guidance and structure.

    Learning about this fear in myself is the best way to begin explaining our family’s decision to step into full-time ministry on staff with YWAM, because as much as we are making this decision for ourselves, we’re necessarily thinking about the repercussions our actions have on our child and future children. 

    Looking purely at our circumstances, isn’t this the best time in our marriage to begin living our lives “responsibly”? We’re about to have a child, we’ve pretty much run out of our life savings, and we have no job lined up for us anywhere, but we have an invitation from God to choose this lifestyle of missions as a career. We’ve concluded “responsible” looks a little different for us than what we thought it was supposed to look.  

    Do we make decisions based on creating stability and material comfort for our children? These things are not inherently bad, but what I’ve come to realize in myself is that when stability and material comfort becomes the primary goal in making a decision, that decision doesn’t come from a place of freedom, but fear.

    We’re also learning that when we make lifestyle decisions out of fear, it will communicate those fears and priorities to our children. 

    For the sake of our children, our marriage, and our loved ones, we’ve decided to take a step into a direction that will require greater amounts of faith and trust in God’s love and providence. We knew that through this choice, we are modeling to our children our values and our priorities.

    We see it as the the practical application of the lessons that we’ve learned in our 3 years of marriage about God’s infinite love for us and the freedom that the Spirit of the Lord brings into our lives. 

    How does that actually look? Here’s Part 2 of our reflections on why we decided to go into full time missions with YWAM. Click here for Part 3 (coming soon).

    - j

     

  4. After our two years of foreign-land sojourning as a married couple, I wanted a stable life for our family  somewhere near our families and friends in LA. We could work and live missionally wherever we decide to call home, raise our kids, and invest into a long-term career for the next 10-20 years. I didn’t need a two-story house or even a new car, all I asked was to have a bit more than enough, Trader Joes and a Korean market, and live within the comforts of what I knew to be a “godly and carefully planned, adventurous” life.

    And then I went to Youth With A Mission (YWAM) for Discipleship Training School (DTS).

    DTS was really good for me. It was like an intense detox of unbelief, of seeing myself for who I really am, and discovering a whole new world of wealth—and not the monetary kind. Two major events that I struggled through include learning that Jeremiah wanted to live a missional life as a career missionary, and finding out I was pregnant on outreach. The key word here, is “struggled”.  You can read about the pregnancy story here.

    DTS was not easy. We had very little financial support and paid out of pocket our entire life savings (granted it wasn’t a lot, but still). That, in itself, was a difficult decision to make. It was uncomfortable, I was hormonal for most of it,  and God didn’t speak to me with his audible voice magically enlightening my life, but I can say with confidence now that despite those things, it was so, so, good.

    We both decided to do a DTS together because we wanted to discover more of God and seek direction for the next step of our lives. We came with expectant hearts and we finished with more than we asked for, but just not in the way I expected.

    As I learned more about the man I married (yes, ladies, you will continue learning more and more about your husband even when you think you know all that there is to know about him), I realized the lifestyle and calling God had for him was very much outside of my comfort zone.  I thought I needed God to speak clearly to me through lightning bolts engraving His message in the sand for me to step out.

    For much of that time God was wooing me and focusing all His attention on my heart while I threw tantrums about why He wasn’t being clear about “our future”.  I was responding out of fear and mistrust to God’s invitation to lay down my life and trust Him.

    It certainly feels good to be independent and capable, even when that leaves God only on the margin of our lives. Maybe the most difficult things to lay down were the expectations and dreams of what I thought my life was going to look like; work, steady income—not an extravagant amount, but enough to save and eat whatever we want and maybe go on a trip once a year, ministry in the workplace, loving the lost… Instead, God was asking me to trust him wholly. But why did you make us so capable? was my imploring question.  Why go through this trouble of worrying our parents and facing the unknown? It’s so upside-down that we should be living off support at this point in our lives!

    I was sinking deeper into my own insecurities and foolishness and bought into the lie that an “easier” life was a happier one, when in reality I wouldn’t truly be happy outside of God’s calling for me and Jeremiah, no matter the circumstances. I thought stability, family support, and a “balanced” lifestyle would be easier than facing the instability of raising financial support, time away from our family and loved ones, and living an unusual life that would open us to criticism by others.  

    I guess that was one of the biggest lessons I learned through DTS: there’s still a lot of fear in my life. Fear is the opposite of Love and the only way I will overcome it is to learn to recognize the ways I invite fear into my life and practice stepping out against that fear in those areas. Sometimes stepping out against fear means choosing to put myself in a place that takes more courage. DTS has really been a time of uncovering which desires in my heart stem from freedom and love, and which come from fear. I would like to wake up every morning in confidence saying “I am more courageous today than yesterday”. O, that love would overflow out of my courage and infect those around me!

    Another big lesson I learned was that God would love me no matter what. I realized that I could still choose to to be in a place I’m not called; God would not love me less. But, as far as obedience to what I think is the next step, well I’ve come to conclude that I’d rather risk it in faith, than to choose a “safer” path out of fear.

    As far as that next thing we’re stepping into, that will be for another post. :)

    -h

     

  5. One random internet stumbling ago, I found that quote and tapped it out on my phone to save for later. Isn’t it perfect? Profound? Poetic?

    As pragmatic and rational as I can be, there’s a part of me that’s also unfailingly wistful, naive, and a bit nostalgic for some idealized perfect future or circumstance. (Can you even be nostalgic for a future thing?)

    I love the quote’s ability to hide the passion and emotion implied in the words with its dry delivery. Part of the beauty of those words are the breadth of human experience they capture, but I’m just going to focus on the few that struck me most: hard work and emotion. It amused me how my subconscious idealized those things without experientially knowing what they were.

    In its own way, DTS taught me more about those two things than anything I’ve done in my life thus far. Some people are, by nature or by nurture, able to function freely in those two things. I am not one of those people. I’ve always tried to overcome this with the pressure and stress that’s induced by procrastinating on deadlines and analytically breaking down emotions, respectively. Not the healthiest ways to function, let me tell ya.

    Much of it came from living out of insecurity—of acting and doing because I wanted to prove my worth by being better than the person next to me or earn and justify the love/approval from my parents (and thus God). Raw and unbridled emotions were simply a mystery and an inconvenience that seemed only to cause pain.

    True humility (thus confidence) only comes when the Father whispers the ultimate reality to you: “I love you. Now. In the past. In the future. Nothing will change that”, and then you believe it.

    When I returned to Kona, it gave me proof of my growth. I was constantly forced to think about my 19 year old self vs. my 26 year old self. It was so significant for me because my growth is something I am always taking for granted. I’m far more comfortable obsessing over my shortcomings rather than the ways in which I’ve matured and improved.

    As I wrote back in January, my tears helped to discover a part of me I’d let grow hardened. My hurts and bitternesses began thawing and it allowed me to simply love myself and receive love from the people around me.

    I’ve had a complicated relationship with leadership. Maybe that’s true for a lot of my generation—a generation that was shielded from failure with awards and assurance that they were special or extraordinary. I consider my first leadership role to have been in Kona with YWAM staffing a DTS and leading a team on outreach to China. I was 19, wildly ambitious and desiring perfection. I returned a little wiser, but still not fully having dealt with the pattern of leading out of striving that had taken root.

    At UCLA, I assumed leadership roles among a group of passionate and idealistic college kids who wanted to see God move dramatically there (I’m oversimplifying a bit). With that root issue unresolved, I came out of those four years tired and a little disillusioned, but onto a new high—a romantic relationship!

    I married soon after without fully dealing with my heart issues and went straight to a 9 to 5 in a foreign country with no community around me.

    It took those years outside of the familiar, discovering what it meant to be known by another, and being humbled by my inability to easily live out my ideals, to process and better appreciate what I now understand to be such an important, beautiful, and courageous period in my life. This was a marked difference from the scorn with which I viewed my many mistakes and regrets, but it was also a tough period where my heart began to shy away from living with confidence, vision, and integrity, choosing instead to live mostly for my flesh.

    It’s no wonder when I returned to Kona with no real objective but to receive love, I broke down. God gently reminded of how my heart and my daily life choices had grown to prioritize my flesh over my spirit.

    Seven years prior, I asked God to teach me how to cry. Seven years later, he answered that prayer—just not in the way I expected.

    One day, God showed me the two paths I could have taken after I prayed that prayer. One was a path of confidently living life based on the reality that I was loved by God. The other was to live life consumed with earning love based on earthly standards. Both would accomplish the goal, but I chose the latter. Looking back, many of my life decisions in the day to day things were made more out of the fear of failure and rejection than confidence in the reality of my worth. God showed me a bruised and beaten heart from choosing to operate out of fear, rather than accepting and living from my true identity.

    I’ve noticed that I tend to place most of my effort on making wise and love-filled decisions on the bigger, overarching things in life instead of the quiet moments when no one’s looking.

    I’ve always loved the latin proverb esse quam videri, “to be rather than to seem”. It’s because I suck at it! It’s really hard for me to be genuine because I’m always overthinking things and really conscious of how I appear to other people. I’m the worst critic of them all! It’s because I’m so judgmental that I’m so careful and want my outer appearance to be without fault. What a horrible way to live!

    Being in community forces you to trash the notion that you can be perfect in front of others. You’re always showing your bad side in one way or another—how beautiful is that! I have a feeling God intended us to live that way.

    In outreach, you can’t be perfect. But, just like it did on my own outreach seven years ago, being in Africa on outreach forced me to cling to God which, paradoxically, freed me to be myself! I definitely wasn’t perfect at it, but boy am I excited to get better and grow in it.

    You know what I learned? To start sweating the small stuff. It’s the small decisions in your day that help you learn how to sweat—to put in the difficult work that’s necessary to achieve something of worth.

    DTS taught me that discipline is so important in the little things. And for me, I could only have learned that through hearing and believing that I am loved.

    -j

     

  6. It was the third morning of our outreach, March 30th to be exact. We woke up that Sunday morning in no extraordinary way, except that I was about four days late for my period. We dismissively credited the fatigue of our 35 hour travel for the delay. 

    The South African sun peeked into our wooden shack on stilts, and stirred us out of our warm bed to our 100 meter walk to the shared bathroom outside. Everything was ordinary, including my frog friend visiting me in my daily, cold shower. It wasn’t until after my shower that I suspected something was definitely out of the ordinary when I suddenly had the urge to puke on a completely empty stomach.

    I remember pulling myself together and walking back to our cottage in a daze. "ohhmyyygoodness… I think… I’m pregnant!" Later that day, the pregnancy tests we bought confirmed in two bright red lines that a little somebody was growing inside of me! 

    I sat in the bed with a blanket teepee wrapped around me minutes after our freakingout/hugging/kissing session, not sure of how I felt. It was exciting! I was thrilled! But at the same time, it was just too crazy! "God, is this really, okay? Did you really call us to Africa with this new baby? Are we being responsible?!?"

    You see, I found that as I started seeking the voice of God and His will for my life, there are times when the choices He guides us to may seem, well, irresponsible. Foolish, stupid, irrational, backwards, are all inter-changeable terms. Oh, I had my ideas of what it meant to be a responsible adult and parent, and being in Africa, 6 weeks pregnant, without hot water, no control of my diet, and no knowledge of how to receive healthcare were not one of them.

    I realized, as a single person in college, my process of laying down my rights and loving Jesus was only to the extent of what I knew as a single person. Makes sense right? So many new rights and entitlements came up when we stepped into marriage and tried to figure out how to love Jesus as a couple. We’ve been learning and growing in this area for the past three years, and still learning! But as a soon-to-be-parent, I don’t know why it was surprising that I found myself struggling with these new rights I firmly held on to. Jesus was not Lord of my future family quite like I imagined or wanted Him to be. 

    Naturally, trusting God is not natural, nor is it easy. It’s much easier to trust in myself, in what I know and understand. Throughout most of my time in Africa, I was on this continual up and down coaster of wanting to trust God and blaming God (or Jeremiah or myself) for placing our family in such an uncomfortable position to have to trust God. Isn’t it funny that trusting God isn’t really difficult, until we have to?

    I am still in the process of laying down my rights, especially as a soon-to-be parent, and I’m sure this process will continue as our child grows. But looking back at my time on outreach, I am so thankful for the time of stretching and struggle. Ultimately, our child is not really ours. And even with a 6 week old embryo, in His mercy, God was reminding me of this. He assured me that He is taking care of His child, and will continue to as I follow His voice and obey. My part as a mother, is to nurture and love this baby I’ve been entrusted with temporarily, by obeying His voice above my own.

    So that is the story of how God, the Professor of Life, welcomed me to Parenting 101.

    -h

     

  7. And here we are in South Africa! Despite the crazy bumps in the road, all 14 of us have safely arrived at Ten a Thousand Homes YWAM Base in White River. There are already so many stories to be told, even of our journey here!

    It is our first official day of work here with our hosts, Ten Thousand Homes. Even our little one is joining in on the community projects!

    I am out with a nasty cold today, so I would appreciate some prayers! Despite not being able to work, I am so glad I can have some down time to update all of you. Thank you for walking with us in our journey!

     

  8. Living in community is not easy. Loving unconditionally is not easy. Forgiveness and humility is not easy. And so, being like Jesus is not easy.

    Sometimes a good cry will do, a raging workout session, maybe a shared tub of ice cream, a venting session to a listening ear, or even a silent hug will do wonders…but these sweet methods that ease our pain without transforming our hearts are bandaids that make us feel better just for the moment.

    Take a deep breath, and pray with me a prayer of peace if you’re in need of transformation and healing.  

    The Peace Prayer

    Lord, make me an instrument of Thy peace;
    Where there is hatred, let me sow love;
    Where there is injury, pardon;
    Where there is error, the truth;
    Where there is doubt, the faith;
    Where there is despair, hope;
    Where there is darkness, light;
    And where there is sadness, joy.

    O Divine Master,
    Grant that I may not so much seek
    To be consoled, as to console;
    To be understood, as to understand;
    To be loved as to love.

    For it is in giving that we receive;
    It is in pardoning that we are pardoned;
    And it is in dying that we are born to eternal life. Amen.

    -St. Francis of Assisi

    *
    My dark, but lovely heart has been healing and slowly changing.

    "But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it." 

     

  9. Our parents are here in Kona! We are so blessed to share this DTS experience with them in person! They are leaving tonight back to LA, and in just one week we will be taking our 30 hour journey to South Africa~ 

     


  10. Anonymous said: <3 will be praying for you both as you prep for Africa!!!

    thank you! :) your prayers are VERY much appreciated!

     

  11. I have seen this view often in the short seven years I’ve known my husband both as a friend and as a lover. The leaps of faith he takes into new territories, unknown futures, and adventures of trusting and obeying God have always challenged me and given me the courage to jump in after him. I’m so thankful for his leadership and his ability to lay down his rights before Jesus. Although, to be honest, the moments before I experience the thrill of flying, I’m always annoyed and anxious that he’s put me in that position to jump! I know he loves me because afterward I’ll be like “omg, you were so right! Everything is okay! This is so fun!”, and he’ll just take my hand and never say “I told you so”. ^^

    In the past few weeks, I’ve struggled watching Jeremiah prepare for another plunge in terms of our next step after DTS. I’m not ready!… How can you even think to jump?!… We don’t even see the bottom of this cliff!… How can you be sure this is God?!

    The path is so narrow ya’ll. (I have roommates from Texas and they are rubbing off on me). It is so difficult to lay down my rights, pick up my cross and follow Him. Sure, it’s easy to trust God in certain areas of our lives, as long as we have the stable paycheck, a car, our own place, access to Trader Joe’s, and our family and friends…But I am still so afraid to trust God in all areas of my life and it’s hard to give up all of these rights I feel entitled to. Not only that, I’m so afraid of hearing God’s voice wrong! It makes me immobile!

    As each week is progressing into deeper and more difficult topics of teaching here at DTS, I’ve been undergoing several moments of deconstruction and restoration as God is continually pulling out lies and replacing them with truth in my heart. There are so many lies I’ve let myself believe that have rooted into fear and distrust in God…God’s ministers in full-time ministry sacrifice so much needlessly, your friends and parents will think you are irresponsible and foolish if you can’t financially support yourself, you have the potential and education to “make it big” and do “big things” for God, and you’re wasting it away, if you do hear wrong then it’s the end of the world…

    I am still on top of that cliff; sometimes pacing, sometimes meditating sometimes arguing with God, arguing with Jeremiah, arguing with myself… But, I’m still okay. I’m not ready to jump just yet, but I’m still okay. Jesus is taking my broken, hurt, selfish heart and penetrating my darkness with his gentle Love. Oh, it hurts, but it’s beautiful and it’s good. It’s so good.

    Jesus, thank you. And, I love you so much.

    -h

     

  12. We’re already in Week Six of our DTS! I can’t believe we’re already halfway through our lecture phase. As many of you already know, in six weeks we will be going on a short term mission trip. I’ve been looking for an opportunity to share our mission trip location, but I’ve been busy being “BAMMED!” by Jesus (it’s a good thing), and I just kept pushing it back. So without further ado, drumroll please: ba dum ba dum ba dum….

    Hannamiah will be going to South Africa and Swaziland!! 

    Why South Africa and Swaziland?

    Before we came to YWAM, God spoke to us about walking in humility as a couple and serving wherever there was a need. So, to keep the story short, during the time we were praying about outreach locations, our school leaders asked Jeremiah to go to South Africa and Swaziland as a co-leader because he has experience staffing a DTS outreach. We had our hearts set for Egypt initially, but seeing this need, we were moved to simply serve our school and our leaders in whatever area they needed. 

    Jeremiah will be serving as co-leader along with a lovely Brazilian sister. Our company includes two leaders, eleven students, and two children! I will serve as translator for the most part, because most of the students are Korean! 

    What We’ll Be Doing There

    There’s still a lot we don’t know because none of us have ever been to these countries, but that is causing us to pray even more! For now, we know that we may be working with home constructions in Johannesburg, South Africa and working with orphans diagnosed with aids in Swaziland. 

    Prayer Requests

    1. Our team still has a few individuals who need the money to go out with us. We are praying and fundraising for $10,000! 

    2. We really want a sense of unity and a hunger to pray as a team! We want all of our members to experience breakthrough and healing here during the remaining lecture phase. 

    3. We know that we’re on the right track with what God wants to do with us, because we feel the enemy attacking in very annoying ways. Please pray for protection over our hearts and pray for courage for our team. We want the courage and authority to pick up our shield and sword and fight, while keeping our eyes on Jesus.

    *
    We are so excited for the things God has in store for us for the next six weeks and for our outreach! Thanks for walking this journey with us. 

    P.S. My husband is the best! I felt so overwhelmingly blessed and loved on my 25th birthday here at YWAM. Thanks for all the birthday wishes and cards, everyone! 

    -h

     

  13. I met a sweet girl named Gabriella today at the Banyan Tree cafe. Her and her schoolmates from Foundation School were practicing reaching out and speaking to people they felt God wanted them to speak to. She approached me shyly and asked if I had a minute. She asked me my name and started a conversation. She asked if she could pray for me, and of course I couldn’t refuse! Her prayer was three simple sentences:

    "Jesus, I pray for Hannah.
    I pray that she can hear your voice, and know what to do.
    And… play hide and seek with you.
    Amen!”

    She giggled away with her friends handing me this butterfly. 

    I melted.


    -h

     


     

  14. Here is our temporary address during our training here at the University of the Nations:

    75-5851 Kuakini Hwy #224
    Kailua Kona, HI 96740 

    I would love to read some letters here at one of my favorite spots on campus ;) *hint hint

     

  15. Since the first day I stepped back onto the warm sands of the Islands, God has been reawakening some of the dreams and desires that have been left on the back burner these past few years. You know which ones I’m talking about; the dreams that have been shushed and pushed into a little corner or a shelf where it just collects dust. One of those dreams I’d like to share is adoption.

    Adoption for Jeremiah and me seemed so far away and just too far from reality in the first two and half years of our marriage. We weren’t even ready to have our own kids, let alone think about adoption. All of our circumstances have kept us from even opening up that dream, until now. 

    During Family Week, Darlene and Loren Cunningham told us so many inspiring stories of how God provided and cared for their families. On the last day, they introduced a couple who have six children; three of their own, three adopted all with special needs, who also founded Chosen and Dearly Beloved. They are hosting a seminar this coming week about adoption and we are both so excited! 

    We have no idea how God will lead us with this dream. It may be now, it may be later, it may be that it’s not for us, but for us to guide others in adoption. All I know is that God saw this small dream, so full of dust and neglect, and He picked it up gingerly and placed it in my hands again. 

    God is a God who remembers all of your dreams. He knew about them before you were even knit in your mother’s womb! Dig around in the hard to reach places of your heart with God, and maybe you’ll stumble upon an old, rusted dream. 

    Happy Sunday, everybody!

    -h