I'm tired. I have been filling out the application for the IMB. Actually, "filling out the application" sounds too simple...I've been writing, and writing, and writing about everything I believe, in terms of salvation, the work of the Holy Spirit, the life and ministry of Christ, the role of God as our Father, the Trinity in general, the local church, the ministry of body of Christ as a whole, and anything else you can imagine as it relates to our Faith in Christ!!!
Although my mind is a little tired (because I haven't actually had to think in a very long while!), it has been an incredible process. I felt like I was back in college in a Christian theology class! I think we so often take our faith for granted. We don't really even think about why we believe what we believe....or for that matter, what we do believe. As I was writing my answers, I found that it wasn't that difficult. (Get me started on any topic, and I'll take off!) I know what I believe, and I know why. But, I don't often reflect on that. As Christians, we are BLESSED! We are blessed to have LIFE in Christ, and life abundantly! Oh, how I take that for granted! Jesus had to endure a LOT for me to have the freedom I do. I deserve death, but I "get" life...forever! And, all I had to do was accept and believe that! How easy was that? Well, I guess it wasn't so easy for Jesus. And, it isn't so easy for all people to accept that. When I stop and think about it all, it really is almost infathomable...so easy, it's hard.
Another good point in the application process - I have a whole new respect for Baptist missionaries on the field. I admire ALL missionaries on the field! But, I like knowing the care the IMB takes to ensure that all those on the field are doctrinally sound and on the same page. It is truly the most thorough process I have ever been through - and I'm only applying for short-term two year service! The Online Health Questionaire alone had a note in the directions to prepare for a three hour time frame to complete!
ALL of that to say....I'm almost finished with the IMB application!! I only have my 8 page biography to write!
(How was that for a long undate?) :-)
Wednesday, June 20, 2007
Friday, June 8, 2007
An amazing little girl I have never met blessed me by her gift. As part of a Global Impact project, the Children's Department at my mom's church (First Baptist, Midland) has been doing a fund-raiser called "Coins for Clothes" to collect money for clothes for kids in Mukaa, where we will be ministering this summer. A little girl, Kaylee, was going to be out of town on the last week of the project, but wanted to give her money. She and her mom brought it up to the church office where my mom works. Isn't that sweet? Kaylee's mom said, "Kaylee really enjoyed doing things to collect money for the clothes. She even decided to give all the money in her wallet because she would have other chances to earn money this summer." Her mom also said that she is praying now for God's call on Kaylee's life to be clear...whatever call that may be. How precious. I am praying that with her. And what a prayer that is for all of us...for God's call on our lives to be clear! Thank you for sharing, Kaylee! You are a blessing to me, and will be a blessing to my new friends in Kenya! I can't wait to tell them about you!
Thursday, June 7, 2007
Do the ages of others and events in other peoples' lives sometimes make you realize your age more than your actual age? I don't think of my self as getting any older, and I am still young. But, saying my "little" brother is turning 30...wow! And another thing....I got an email last night telling me of a friend's baby arriving. I remember when we got the call that she was born! I'm not supposed to be old enough for that to happen. Weird stuff. Anyway...HAPPY 30th BIRTHDAY, KEEN!
Wednesday, June 6, 2007
I beat Steven Murray to East Africa!! If you've seen Steven's blog, he has a cool little map of people who have viewed his blog around the world. (And he has tons of friends everywhere!) Of course, I noticed he didn't have a little dot anywhere near East Africa. Then, I got an email from my friend, Shem, saying he was reading it...in Kenya! Wow...faster to Kenya than Steven W. Murray...and I've only been doing this for a month! :-) So, a special tribute to my Kenyan friends. This is Shem (on the left), his brother, Jared (right) and the former president of Kenya...I think.
Tuesday, June 5, 2007
That's the question right now. (FYI...IMB = International Mission Board (of the Baptist General Convention) and ISC = International Service Corps, 2-3 year international missionary assignment) Because of the large presence of mission organizations in Kenya, and specifically Nairobi, there are very few IMB possitions in the Nairobi area. So short story...if I go IMB, I will basically have to choose between going with the awesome benefits & opportunities with ISC - going to, possibly, Tanzania, Uganda or the Kenyan coast (which is beautiful), OR going as an IMB volunteer - less stable, as far as benefits of the program, but able to serve at some of the places I would LOVE to be involved with in the Nairobi area. Another big factor: fund-raising. ISC is a salaried possition; volunteering is obviously not. But, most full-time mission positions are not salaried; they require financial support of ministry partners. So...more things to make my head spin!! Please be praying for wisdom as I continue to go through this process. There are so many other options and things to consider, but I would love to work with the IMB, if that is what the Lord has planned.
Saturday, June 2, 2007
"Come and see what God has done, how awesome are His works in man's behalf." (Psalm 66:5) It is clear that the Lord is at work on my behalf! I am seeing how He has gone before me and layed people in my path for His benefit, and I just have to share! I met another amazing woman, Linda Witte. I am in Midland, and she and her family just returned last week for furlough from Kenya. In a two hour conversation we made MANY connections of people in Kenya. It was such confirmation to me that God is at work! She said that the people I already know (or know of and will be working with) are the exact people she would be connecting me with! Once again, God has given me the blessing of a very helpful person!! Please be praying that the Lord will continue to guide my steps and place the people in my path that He has ordained me to meet.
And, Trey certainly isn't mine! ;-) So, all of you who hear me talk about my little Trey and those of you who made fun of me when the bus driver had to pry him out of my arms on the last day of school, please know that I loved ALL my special little ones this year. Trey just has a VERY special place in my heart. This little guy started the year with a vocabulary of NOTHING! But, he had a squeel that could be heard loud and clear. After one year, this amazing kid is speaking and communicating like I never thought possible! He is so loving, and I cannot tell you how much I will miss him next year! I couldn't resist taking time to plaster his picture and share my little guy with the whole world. Thanks to his parents for sharing him with me this year. I LOVED teaching PPCD! So sad it is over....for now.
Friday, June 1, 2007
May 24th...I closed on my house on the last day of school. What a crazy time to be packing up my classroom and home at the same time. But, what closure to come all at once! God has amazingly worked out the details to free me up from responsibilities & committments here so that I can plan for full-time service in Kenya. I couldn't have planned it better myself...obviously!! "Commit to the Lord whatever you do, and your plans will succeed. In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps." (Proverbs 16:3,9)