Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Africa... TOMORROW!

So, I am headed to Africa tomorrow.

As I pack for Africa, I can't help but think about my trip to India last year. What a time of growth, refining, and discovery.  A time of humbling, discomfort, and appreciation. Andrew and I decided to go because the command is clear... MAKE DISCIPLES.  I find that we are tempted to do everything else except the ONE thing Jesus told us to do in the Great Commission.  So we asked ourselves an all-important question: Are our plans self-directed or Christ-directed?

So Andrew and I signed up for India. I also found out that God does not bless based solely on our motives. God ALWAYS blesses HIS plan. That is where our heart for missions opened up. That is where God told us that we will one day be long-term missionaries. With that comes excitement and fear. But fear is only the devil trying to get me to do something else rather than spread the gospel to unreached nations.

In India, we got to do something I have NEVER done before. We shared the Gospel with people that have NEVER heard the name of Jesus. I'm talking blank stares, weird looks, shrugging of shoulders NEVER heard.  So we told them. In the village below, they had a huge Hindu temple in the middle of their village. They just finished a child sacrifice upon us arriving. We got to tell them that the sacrifice has already been made... His name is Jesus. There is so much power in that name when they heard it for the first time. You could have heard a pin drop.

So... I could go on about India, but this post is about AFRICA!

So we are heading to Ethiopia tomorrow. We will be doing lots of training and evangelizing to women and children.  We will be partnering with LIA (Life in Abundance) where they take the poorest of poor and give them essentials but mainly give them the gospel training they need to see who the ONE true God is!

Andrew and I took a missions class with David Platt (life-changing) and he told us missions and evangelism starts with our hearts.  John Scott says, "The greatest single hinderance to evangelism today is the secret poverty of our own spiritual experience." Evangelism is the overflow of our hearts! We must have a LIVING relationship with Jesus Christ. We need a ZEAL for the kingdom.  We NEED to have a burden for the lost.  Isn't it sad that I sometimes get caught up in my comfortable life that I forget that there are people that will die and live apart from God? Isn't it sad that Jesus commanded us to go to them and I forget to pray for them? With evangelism comes spiritual battle.  So we become extremely dependent on Him, and the Holy Spirit lives in us, so why do we fear? 

So today, wherever you are. Share this gospel:

The good news that the just and gracious God of the universe has looked upon hopelessly sinful people and sent His son, Jesus Christ, God in the flesh, to bear His wrath against sin on the cross and to show His power over sin in the resurrection so that all who have faith in Him will be reconciled to God forever.

So, I am taking this great news to Ethiopia tomorrow. Please pray for our team of 11 ladies (my mom and Lexie Strong included). Pray we share the Word, show the Word, teach the Word, and SERVE Ethiopia.  Pray we are confident in God's sovereignty even when times get tough.  Pray that the poverty doesn't make us as sad as spiritual poverty.  

So, I also challenge YOU: Sacrifice your agenda each day and get involved where God is at work! Here is a Francis Chan video that is very convicting to do just that. Click here to watch it. It's only 3 minutes, but VERY convicting! 


Saturday, July 7, 2012

David Crowder Band-Never Let Go-lyrics video

Sovereign God

I needed this reminder tonight and he totally reminded me through this song...

Here are the lyrics. So humbling.

Years have passed
And years remain
Still You will last
And You will never change
My God my hope is found in You

Days go by
And I have failed
To give my mind, my strength
My soul, my heart
My God Your ways are found secure

Sovereign God take control
Of my heart and of my soul
Here am I everything for You
Help me live selflessly
Sharing in Your suffering
Here am I everything for You

Here and now 
I come
To give my mind, my strength
My soul, my heart
My God
Your ways are found secure

I have been chosen
Your grace has found me
I am alive
And I will live forevermore
Such sweet salvation
Your grace has saved me
I am alive
And I will sing forevermore

Family Vacation-- Seagrove Style

#Albertsenvaca12 is over.  All 14 of us under one roof enjoying the sun and each other.  I am so glad that we had the chance to do this! 

Our house for the week! 

All of us (except for Dad who took the pic)

30-A is a popular highway on Santa Rosa Beach (near Destin and Panama City).  30-A is where Seaside, Seagrove, Watercolor, and Rosemary Beach reside. All beautiful places! Everyone has bikes and you ride from one place to the next.  I enjoyed bike riding with my baby and exploring the area with him.  

The walk to the beach everyday!

Sunsets never get old

Ride to Seaside everyday :) 

Bike Rides

My brother Josh and his wife Shannon have 5 kids. So to say that this vacation was boring would be a complete lie.  Never a dull moment! And I wouldn't trade it for anything.  I am actually going to miss waking up and having those kiddos there right next to me! They are five little blessings that I love and cherish.

Fourth of July was spent by having a cookout with my family, and then the the kids (plus anna the newborn and samuel) went to Seaside to watch fireworks.  We sat on the quad and I taught Samuel how to take pictures. We still have some work to do! 

Going to Seaside!

The quad at Seaside! PACKED!!

Hey Cutie

Samuel photography

Samuel Photography. One of my favorite pics of all time!

Samuel Photography. MY FAVORITE pic of all time. Hands down.

Watching fireworks! 

Haha. I love this because apparently the flash was blinding!


What a great time at Seashore Circle!