Tuesday, August 16, 2011

My Week At A Glance

Well, another week has passed but not without great revelation and insight from God particularly in the area of godly relationships which was the topic of our classes this week. Our speaker was Mar Coghi, who is also one of the directors of the YWAM San Jose base!

I had been praying for God to reveal great things to me, through the Holy Spirit, during that week and He certainly did not disappoint! The revelations were far beyond anything I was expecting including important and godly principles that are key in my life to enjoy blessed and successful godly relationships!! Especially my marriage relationship!!

So in this post, I decided that I would give you all a taste of what happened this week so that you could share this journey with me!

- Class tidbits:
o ‘Obedience to what God says not only changes you, but opens doors for others to change.’
o Love is not a feeling, it is a choice! God made a choice to send His only son to the world because He loved us THAT much!
o If we do not have love for God, it is foolish to think that we can have love for other people!
o We love because God first loved us!!! (1 John 4:19).
o Speak in love to someone who is doing something that upsets or annoys us. Saying nothing is pride and pride says, “I don’t need God, there is nothing wrong with me. I do not need to change!”
o Love has no fear!! Perfect love casts out ALL fear and God is perfect love!
o God wants heaven on earth but that does not work if there is conflict between one another!

- Class tidbits:
o Activity prior to class: We were asked to pray for each member of our families and wait to hear from God as to what word(s), Scripture verses and/or words of encouragement He would bring us. Then we were told to email what God spoke to us for each person in our family!
o We learned about the five phases of a relationship: Attraction Phase, Testing Phase, Commitment Phase, Maintenance Phase and The End of the Relationship Phase (if it reached that phase). Wisdom and knowledge was flowing freely from our speaker and God really spoke to my heart during these teachings, ingraining in me the utmost importance of following God in all relationships!! This filled me with an even greater desire to be married again!!! YES!!!

- Class tidbits:
o A look at agape love! It is the unconditional love of God expressed by you for someone else within a godly relationship, whether friendship or marriage! It’s a type of love that is always giving!
o Man has value because God breathed life into each of us through Adam!!! Isn’t that incredible????
o God gave, not to get anything in return! We should seek relationship because of what God is doing in us and not to get anything in return!
o How do we learn to love? We go to the source of love, God, and His word and study His word and ask Him how He loves when He is love! There is a price for love, it is not a gift.
o Relationships call us to leave ourselves and place our eyes on someone else! Relationships challenge our comfort zone! This is agape love!
o Fear in love enters when we decide against what God wants us to have and against God’s intentions for us.
o Building a marriage house of Oneness!! This involves the following: the foundation of Jesus Christ, a pillar of agape love, a pillar of trust, a pillar of respect/honour and a pillar of understanding. Without these elements, your house will be shaken and it will fall. Your marriage must be God centered!!! Agape love is the most enduring, trust is the most fragile, respect/honour are the most neglected and understanding takes the longest to obtain.

- Special Activity: We taped a page of construction paper to our backs with our name at the top of the page and each classmate wrote words of encouragement or passages of Scripture on that page as an exercise in God’s agape love for one another!!!
- Class tidbits:
o Boundaries!!
o Freedom: Is making decisions based on your values! Responsibility: Is initiating and acting according to those values!
o There needs to be a foundation of love with God in your own life before engaging in a relationship with a person.
o If you don’t know your boundaries, then you don’t know what your principles are.
o Boundaries define who we are/aren’t and protect us, keeping the bad out and the good in.
o Your life should reflect your values!
o If you have your boundaries, values and beliefs set, the right person with the same boundaries and values will be matched to you.
o One boundary that is essential is truth! Lying and deception have no place in your life! (Psalm 101:7)
o Are you God’s? Are you His and is He yours? He wants all of you!
o Never go to bed angry! You may not believe the other person should be forgiven but God didn’t have to forgive us yet He did!!
o Purity in relationships!! 1 Thessalonians 4:3-8.
o Lust is uncommitted love!!
o You must be in a relationship with someone who is in submission to God. That they want to do things God’s way!!
o Repentance is in itself a boundary. It makes you free!

- Class tidbits:
o Discussion of logistics for outreach. As we looked at a map of Costa Rica, our team leaders went over the tentative travel and ministry schedule for our outreach time. Woo hoo! Once clear details of where and how long become available, I’ll include more at a later date!
o Discussion of outreach finances. It was discussed that several people had not paid their fees in full for outreach. We brainstormed and came up with a time of prayer to seek God on ways to raise the remainder of the fees required as a team! In the evening, we gathered as a group in the Homes of Hope house. I led the group and opened in prayer then gave instruction on seeking God’s will, individually, regarding outreach finances. After 20 minutes of individual prayer seeking God’s will, not our own, as to ideas for raising the money, we came back together and shared what God spoke to each of us. God spoke loudly to each person as to the importance of putting God first in all things while remaining unified as a team. The ideas received from God included: a bake sale, garage sale and washing cars. Each person in the group affirmed in one way or another these ideas whether through a word, confirmation of having received the same vision/idea from God or through Scripture. These revelations were recorded on paper as to what each person received and the notes were handed in to our team leaders.

- We found out that one of the members of the children at risk school was short on their funds for outreach and, days prior, had been told that there would be fundraising activities organized to raise money to help our brother in need. One of the fundraising ideas took place last night in the form of a talent show. There were 15 acts all together with several of my own team members participating. It was incredible and I’ve included some pics, below, of some of my peeps in all their talented glory! I’ve included a brief description of each pic!!!

The 'Waka Waka' African dance performed by Morgan, Montana, Cris, Becky, Cherise and Joel!!!

Our very own Elle on the violin!!! Maestro!!

B-boy (Brandon with toque) singing with Chove (YWAM base staff member). Soulful sounds!!!!

Morgan's (orange shirt)'Happy Presentation' with his happy helpers!!!

Jake the Juggler! We had NO idea he had this hidden talent!!!!! Wow!!!

Personal Reflections:
As I continue to seek the LORD and His face while I’m here at YWAM, I just keep surrendering all that I am and all that I know to God’s will for my life, whatever that might be. For I don’t know if anything will be revealed to me during my time here or after I’m done the DTS, in respect to God’s direction for me. Truth be known, I’m not consumed with knowing where God will direct me during and after YWAM. I am too caught up being in this incredible and ever deepening relationship with God that I don’t give, what’s to come, much thought.

However, I believe that I am coming into a sense of God’s direction for me and its seemingly mind boggling revelation for it doesn’t appear to be of a grand nature, as some people might think that it should be when it comes to receiving God’s calling on their lives. But the more I sink into my relationship with God and the more I pray for God’s will to be done in my life, the more simplistic His call appears to be. So simple that it’s a bit confusing.

I’m sure I’m not the only person who sits in anticipation, waiting to hear God’s prompting to go to the depths of Africa to save children from ravishing poverty or to scour the streets of Cambodia to rescue children from human trafficking and/or prostitution. But I’m beginning to see that it’s the person’s submitting attitude to God that makes His call, no matter what it might be, profound in its impact upon our lives. No matter whether it’s a grand call to ministry or as simple as handing out coffee and cookies to prostitutes a couple nights a week, it’s not about the ministry, it’s about the servant heart of the person awaiting the call.

A couple weeks ago, our class engaged in a trust activity that had us pair up with another person within our team with a blindfold in hand. We were asked to pray in order to receive the location that God wanted each person to take the other, along with any words that God wanted each of us to speak to the other person. Whether words of affirmation or encouragement, trusting God for direction was the purpose of this activity.

After being led, with blindfold on, by my partner we reached her spoken location for me which was the prayer room in front of the world map that hung on the wall. The words she received from God for me were, “You need to be okay with wherever I call you.” She then pointed to different places on the map as she repeated the same words. I didn’t fully realize the meaning behind that revelation until today (Aug. 14), when God spoke a revelation to me.

This revelation had been tied to my increasing frustration at God’s, “no” to me about a ministry that is tied to YWAM, Freedom Street. It’s a ministry that loves and builds relationships with San Jose’s prostitutions in the downtown core of the city. A couple nights a week, this ministry heads into the streets handing out coffee and cookies while building relationships with male and female prostitutes of various ages. My team and I had been receiving training on human trafficking in order to be prepared for what we might encounter or see on the streets when it came
time to travel with leaders of the ministry to the streets to speak with them.

However, whenever it came time for the group to head out, we were first instructed to pray to God to ensure that it was God’s will for each of us to go out and participate in the ministry as we wanted to be God led in this effort, not self willed. Each time I prayed for God’s direction for me to go, His direction was excruciatingly clear, “no.” I couldn’t understand it. My heart was very willing and prepared to go out to the streets to help but God’s will was very clear. Here is where the confusion enters.

Meanwhile, I felt as though God was working within me to move me in a different direction but not necessarily a surprising direction. My heart and spirit had been, increasingly, awakened to the action of prayer. Both during my personal prayer time with God and as an intercessor for someone else. Each time I would engage in prayer, the power of the Holy Spirit would fill me more and more. It is with this increase of power during times of prayer that I was receiving God’s direction or will for me, and that’s to be a powerful woman of prayer.

In many ways, this revelation lines up with words given to me by classmates, leaders and speakers. These words included being a spiritual mother and a woman of power and determination. So feeling the power of the Holy Spirit increase in me during times of personal and corporate prayer was becoming affirmation of what was already starting to become a passion within my heart. It continues to grow within me even as I write this post to all of you!! :D

So, you just never know how or where God might lead you in life! From the biggest to the smallest of ‘ministries’, your ministry is wherever you are and as long as you are engaged in a love relationship with God and seeking Him and His will, claiming God’s great promise of being blessed and living it out to others by being a blessing....there lies your ministry!!

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