Sunday, December 30, 2012

Treasures in the Darkness

Treasures of Darkness

"I will go before you and make the rough patches smooth; I will shatter the doors of bronze and cut through their iron bars. I will give you the treasures of darkness and hidden wealth in secret places, so that you will know that it is I, The Lord, the God of Israel, who calls you by your name." Isaiah 45:2

This was a promise given to me by Papa God the week before I came to Moz in September. He promised me that He would go before me and lay out the path during Harvest School, then He will give me the treasures of the darkness in Tete. Our Shekinah boys are my treasures of darkness.

We don't have the boys home built yet because of finances, but it's going to be built soon in the Name of Jesus! Nick, Marlene, and I are living in a small house that we are renting until we get the home built on our ministries land. We can't legally allow the boys to live here with us because of social services and we don't have all of their documents and things yet. So until we get the home built for them, they are continuing to live on the streets in the city.

The place where the boys are living right now is the lowest and darkest place I've ever been to. While the Harvest School team was here for two weeks, we had the honor of staying one night with the boys in the dump where they live in the city. They had spent the night with us at our house one night when it was raining, so we wanted to spend the night with them to see what their conditions are really like all the time. We wanted to see the reality of it. My reason in going was that I needed to see how their lives are really like so that I know how to pray for and love them even more as their sister. I needed to see the reality of it so I could know the urgency of getting their home built.

Nick and Marlene did not stay with us because they wanted to see how the boys would take care of us and treat us when they weren't around. They wanted to see the fruit of all they have been pouring into these boys. We thought it was going to be difficult without nick and mar there because they both speak Portuguese and none of us do. The boys don't speak any English at all so we were worried about the language barrier. Some of the people on the team were worried about sleeping in a dump in the middle of the city while there are parties and drinking and fights breaking out just across the street.

I went into this with no fear at all. I was completely trusting that my Papa was going to take care of me. If he takes care of my brothers in the street and if they can survive sleeping there, then I can too. As soon as we pulled up, we just saw this huge dump with piles and piles of rubble and trash and rocks. The boys all came running up to us, they were so excited and blown away that we would actually want to come spend the night with them. They all laughed at first cause they didn't think we would actually stay the whole night. We said "well we are all family! You spent the night with us the other night, so we want to spend the night with you now!" Nick and Mar told them to take care of us and protect us cause we are their family. They said ok we will!!!
I can't begin to describe to you the smell that was everywhere and the millions of flies all over everything. It definitely was not the most comfortable place to sleep, but I wasn't complaining. ;) When we got there, the boys immediately started making beds for all of us out of rocks and rubble, they were moving huge pieces of cement and arranging them all for us to sleep in the same area and be comfortable. Then Michael, who is one of the oldest ones (17) and kind of the leader of the rest, went and grabbed all of the old sheets and mats that they had and he gave them all to us to sleep with because it was cold that night. He was making sure that everyone was as comfortable as they could be.

After making the beds, they began to cook some fish that nick and mar bought them for dinner. The way they cook is by putting the food in a really old and nasty cooking pot on top of a little fire that they feed with plastic and anything else they can find laying around. We already ate before we came so we told them not to cook any for us. After it was all cooked up, they washed all of our hands and began serving us first. We were like no we already ate! You guys eat it all! They said no and insisted that we eat first. They wouldn't even touch their food until we all had a little bit. This is a huge transformation that's taken place in them. When Nick and Mar first started ministering to them and feeding them, they would all fight over the food and attack it like vultures to make sure they got the most. Now they are serving us first and not eating until we get some?! That's only by Jesus! :)

Since we didn't have a translator, I was trying to remember all the portuguese that I know from being here two times and trying to learn it in Pemba during HS. I seriously only know very few words and sentences, but somehow Jesus opened my tongue to speak a little but more Portuguese and I became the translator that night. So crazy!

When it was time for bed, there were 5 of us girls all squished together on one of the pieces of cement. I was curled up in a ball on the top corner trying to stay warm because I was the only one who didn't get a blanket. It had rained earlier that day so the temperatures cooled down a lot, plus we were on top of a big hill with the wind. Michael and a few other boys were sleeping on the bed next to us and Michael kept asking me if I was cold. I told him I was a little cold but I'll be fine! After the third time he asked me, he stood up and took the little sheet that he had, off of himself and laid it on me. I almost started crying right there. The fact that he even thought about me being too cold, then him actually taking his little old dirty sheet off of himself to give to me, was so overwhelming to me. It was such a demonstration of what love looks like.

I didn't sleep much because it was cold and tons of people were in the street right next to us drinking and partying the entire night. But we all felt so safe and could literally feel Gods presence and the Holy Spirit with us the entire night. The boys were so cute, they took turns staying awake and watching us to protect us.

I was expecting to be able to love on the boys even more and bless them and be a part of their life for one night, but coming out of it, I think I received more love and blessings from them. It's so amazing to see the fruit of what Nick and Mar have planted in them. Yes, the enemy still tempts them to go back to their old ways of stealing, drinking, and smoking, and yes the still give in to the temptations sometimes. But the transformation that's happening in their hearts is incredible. They are so much more happy and full of life than when I was here in June. I can't wait for the day when they completely fall in love with Jesus and Papa God captures them in His arms. That will be the day when they are totally set free.

It's been hard trying to minister to them the past few days because of stupid choices they are making and going back to their old ways and acting like they aren't getting it, but Papa gave me such a clear word when we were in the car the other day. He said "how bad do you want them, how bad do you want them, how bad do you want them? You are called to love them no matter what, love them through it all no matter what stupid choices they make. I am so jealous for their souls just like I'm jealous for yours. Will you love them with my unconditional love no matter how hard it gets?" YES JESUS they are my treasures in the darkness!!!!

Saturday, December 29, 2012


Harvest School changed my life forever. I received so much breakthrough and revelation of who I am in Christ. I realized that I am Papa Gods's favorite daughter and he loves me more than anything and he's so incredibly jealous for me. I was able to lay my life completely down and say yes to Him and follow His will for my life. I received my DNA as His child and learned so much about what its like and how to be in the mission field. 

I fell in love with Pemba all over again in those three months while I was there. Jesus really connected me even deeper with some of my Mozambican friends there and I became super close with a few of the Harvest students as well. I got used to the holy spirit bubble that Pemba is and fell in love with it. When it was time to leave and come to Tete, it was a lot harder than I thought it would be because I wasn't expecting to love Pemba and miss my friends there so much. It was hard coming to Tete at first, but I still had confirmation and peace that I was supposed to come here.

Transition is never easy but it's sometimes very necessary. Especially when you are following the Lords lead. The first few days here I really had to cling onto the promises He gave me that Im supposed to be here, cause it was a difficult change for me, I'm not going to lie. But the more time I've spent here and the more I get to know Nick and Marlene and the boys, the more peace I have and the more at home I feel. I honestly couldn't imagine being anywhere else in the world than right here right now. Papa keeps breaking my heart more and more everyday for these precious boys that we are loving and building a home for.

I seriously feel so blessed that I get to live here for almost 3 months and be a part of this family and gain 25 more brothers. This is the time where I put into practice all that I learned and experienced in Pemba during Harvest School. This is the reality of a missionaries life that I'm living for a few months. It's definitely already been challenging but I know it's going to be so worth it all.

It's absolutely crazy for me to think that Papa God chose me to come alongside Pioneer61 and be their first intern and love these boys and be an assistant to Nick and Marlene. Who am I that He would chose me to be His hands and feet? He called me and I said YES and I'm so happy that I did! I've learned so much being here already and I have even more to learn.

I'll post more specific stories and prayer requests as I get time to write. But for now, just know that I'm exactly where I'm so supposed to be and Papa is stretching me and molding me into His little missionary in the dirt. :)

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Fire and Baptism

The main theme of my life leading up to harvest school was about me being a living sacrifice for God. Laying my whole life down for Him and His glory. This whole time has been incredible and fun but I hadn't really had the huge breakthrough moment that I thought I would have early on. That all changed this week...

There is a guy here from Georgia that has been leading worship for us in all of our classes. He is seriously anointed and the Holy Spirit breaks out every time he leads worship. The first night that he got here, we had a special worship service with him in the church building and I was praying with my housemate/sister, Lorraine, and God gave me an incredible vision for both of us. This is the moment that started my breakthrough.

In the vision He showed me that he wants to completely set me on fire and burn up everything about me that's not of Him. (This vision was for me and Lorraine together.) It was like he was literally wanting to set us on fire and burn it all up. Then he poured His living water on us and let the fire burn out. The water was just completely submerging us and refreshing us. After the water, He reset His Holy Spirit fire on top of the water. The water was keeping the fire a flame and the fire was keeping the water alive and that's what was keeping us alive. He so clearly showed me that He wants the burning process to be the sacrifice part. He wants me to completely die to myself so that He can then come and pour His living water and reset His fire and make us alive again. Right after I had this vision, the worship leader started singing in the spirit about the fire.

A process is something that takes time. This burning process is going to take some time. He is so incredibly jealous for us that He wants every single fiber of our being to belong completely to Him. He's willing to burn us of ourselves so that we can belong to Him and Him alone. I want His fierce and fiery love to consume everything about me. His living water is what I want flowing in and through me at all times. I want to be a river for Him and drink from His well. Imagine the living water and the Holy Spirit fire flowing and burning together in one person. I have no idea what that even looks like but that's what He told me He's doing in me and Lorraine. I know it's going to be amazing. It already blows my mind to think about the water keeping the fire burning and the fire keeping the water alive and both of them keeping us alive. That picture is forever in my mind and heart.

After 10 days of the burning process, the living water broke through and put the fire out! I felt him submerging me in his new life and making me alive again.  The last week of Harvest School, we had a baptism day. I really felt the Holy Spirit telling me that He wanted to baptize me and he wanted me to symbolize myself laying down my own life, dying to myself, being completely submerged in His living water, and being raised back up in His new life. I've already been baptized when I was younger but I didn't fully understand what it meant. Now that I've totally surrendered myself to Him, I really felt like I needed to show and symbolize what I did in my heart. So that's what I did! I was baptized in the Indian ocean by the Holy Spirit and I've been forever changed.

Bush Bush

The bush bush, is  where my heart is...

I went on bush outreach 4 weeks ago but it feels like I just got back yesterday. Time is flying by so fast here in Mozambique. We only have 4 weeks left of school then I'm off to Tete! What in the world.

For those of you who don't know, the bush is just a term for a remote village. When we go on bush outreach, we break into our color groups and drive in big flat bed camion trucks and drive for hours to a remote mud hut village and share Jesus with everyone.

My color group (royal blue) went with Heidi Baker's team so we had the privilege of going on the same outreach with Mama Heidi. We drove to our village, set up a big screen and played the Jesus film and drew a huge crowd. Mama Heidi preached and we did a healing service.  A few of the young Iris boys came on the outreach with us and they all gave words of knowledge for people that needed healing. That night a woman who was completely deaf, got healed and could hear perfectly! Several village people confirmed that she was deaf before and after Heidi prayed for her, she could hear everything! Hallelujah Hosanna!

The whole weekend was so amazing getting to know the harvest school students and Mozambican pastors in my color group better. Also, a couple of my friends that I met here last year were on my team as well:)

The next day we broke into smaller groups and prayer walked through the village and stopped at several houses and sat and prayed with people in the red dirt. I was in a group with 5 people. We had a Brazilian with us who speaks Portuguese and English, and a moz pastor who speaks Portuguese and Maccoua (local language) so we were able to communicate with people really well. We went to one house and just sat with a mama and her kids and loved on them. It's all about stopping for the one and simply loving.

Then we went to another house where there was an older mama sitting outside her house in the dirt. We went over and sat with her and told her who we were and asked if she needed prayer for anything, she said she wanted prayer for healing. Her body ached all the time and she could barely stand up and walk without pain. Also she was blind in one eye. So we prayed for her for a while, she tested it out and said the pain was still there. The people in my group started to pray again but I stopped them and wanted to talk to the mama for a minute. I asked her if she knew Jesus and if she believed that He can heal her and I explained the whole healing process to her. She said yes yes I believe!! So then we prayed for her muscles and every part that was aching and commanded healing to come in the Name of Jesus. After we were done praying, she stood up and started dancing around and singing and laughing and crying! She was totally totally healed! We celebrated forever and sang worship songs. She said that the eye that was completely blind, was completely healed too and we forgot to even pray for her eye but Jesus still touched it! He is SO good! Then she accepted christ into her heart, and her friend saw the whole thing and she wanted to accept Jesus too.

There are countless stories from this bush outreach that I could share. The chief of the village accepted Christ and we all stayed in tents in his back yard. Mama Heidi bought land to build an iris church, she made plans to build a school and drill a well for water as well. So many things happened and the whole weekend was incredible. It's so humbling going to a village and sharing the simple love of Jesus and leading people to Him.

The bush has stolen my heart every time I've gone. The children just want to be loved and it's the cry of my heart to be able to love them like Jesus does.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Enough Time to Love

This is the first time I've been able to post a blog since I've been in Mozambique! So much has happened and The Lord has been moving in and through me in huge ways. I could write a billion blogs on all the stories that have happened so far but I really feel like for right now I'm supposed to share a prophetic word that one of my sisters gave me yesterday. I will write out stories and share testimonies of stuff that's happened here but for right now, I just want to share this with you!
This is from my house mate in Harvest School, Jessica.
"I see you walking along a road. It was a road of gold and the glory of The Lord caused everything to be very bright. As you walked down the road there were people standing on the side watching you. They said nothing but they looked longingly at you. As you walked I saw you stop for each person. You didn't see their circumstances, but you saw their eyes. You saw their longing and you saw their worth. I saw you stepping down off the road to look into their eyes. I saw you take their faces in your hands and smile I to their souls. I saw you speak life and extend to them the hand of acceptance. When you got back on the path of gold you did not go alone. But you see them up to walk along the path with you. No matter how many people you brought onto the path,, you always stopped for the next face and took them up too. As life continued, the demands of life on your time increased. As you rose into authority and responsibility people's expectations of you increased and you were pressured by the outside to be driven by time and appointment rather than by the eyes of the people alongside the road. But in this vision I saw a promise planted in your heart that kept you from submitting to the demands that would take you away from the longing eyes. That promise for The Lord is that you will ALWAYS HAVE ENOUGH TOMR TO LOVE. He is the god of all time and circumstances and he is the love of those with longing eyes. The beautiful thing about this vision is that you were so intent on the people along the road that you were completely unconcerned with the effects of your smile and hand of acceptance. At the end of your golden road was Jesus welcoming you into heaven. Delight rose in his eyes and he asks you to turn around before venturing further with him. When you turned around you saw for the first time the effect of each stop you made. When you looked back there was a multitude... Millions of people standing with joy filled faces. The longing that had resided in their eyes web you see them was replace with glory, joy, as abundant life. Also you remembers every single name of all the people. You may have only met them once but you remembers their face and name. With tears of joy you turned back to Jesus to see tears of joy streaming down his face too. He took your face in his hands and said well done my good and faithful servant. With you I am well pleased. You have honored me an have brought great joy to my heart. Come, let's spend eternity beyond the veil."
This pretty much says it all, but this is the cry of t heart! Stop for the one and love them no matter what their circumstances are. Remember their name and face. You never know the effect you have on people. Love deeply and unconditionally.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Today Today Today!

Today is the day I leave to head to Mozambique! I can't even describe how I'm feeling right now. It's all so surreal. Two months ago none of this was planned. And now I'm leaving in just two hours! I've really been praying for peace and health and happiness these last few days. No more nerves or bad anxiety. Praying health for my body. I get motion sickness pretty easily and my stomach gets upset a lot. I'm claiming healing for that and that I don't have to deal with it at all this whole trip.

Thank you so much to everyone who has been praying for and supporting me. It means so much to me! I know God has huge plans that I can't even imagine. I have no idea what all He is going to do in and through me over these next few months. I'm so excited I can't even explain!

I fly out of Nashville at 2:30 to head to Atlanta, then from there fly to Johannesburg and stay overnight, then on to Moz! I will arrive in Pemba for Harvest School at around 1:30 pm on Friday the 28th. (1:30 pm moz time, 6:30 am Nashville time) I'll be 7 hours ahead of Nashville time!

Anyway, I just wanted to write one more time before I head out. I will have little to no communication at all the first two months while at Harvest School, but once I get to Tete in December, I should have normal Internet so I will try to update as often as I can!

I love you all and will see you in March :)

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Not much time left!

Excitement..... Happiness..... Anxiousness.... Joy.... Fear.... All a mix of emotions going on in my heart right now! Only 10 more days until I step on the plane to go back to Mozambique, again! 

This past week has been crazy trying to get the rest of my stuff together that I need to take with me to moz. I've started packing yesterday and today. I have a feeling I'll be packing and re packing all week long... ;) I definitely got stressed out yesterday just about the stuff I have to take and the whole getting there process. But then Jesus reminded me of the purpose I'm going and that he will take care of all the details. Literally every single one. 

I can't even begin to describe how excited I am to go to Harvest School and then to go to Tete with Pioneer61. My heart is about to burst with happiness! 

This is a short blog, but just wanted to share how excited I am that it's only 10 DAYS AWAY! Jesus is crazy. And I love Him a lot :) 

Thursday, August 16, 2012

New Beginnings

Tonight is the last night that my whole family will be in one house for a very long time. Tomorrow starts a new chapter in my big brother, Brad's life. We are moving him down to college in Florida. Then I leave at the end of September for Mozambique. 

So many changes are happening in this families life. All for the better, of course, but change is change.  

Anyone who knows about all that Brad has been through this year, knows what a big deal it is that he's moving away. I can't even express how proud I am of him for wanting to finish school and start a new chapter in his life. Yes, I'm going to miss him like crazy but I know without a doubt this is what God has for him for this season. He has come so far in such a short amount of time. He's a living miracle! 

After we move brad into school, we will be taking our last family vacation until I get back from Africa. Theme parks, water parks, the beach.... All in the Florida sunshine:)  can't wait to have this quality time with them before I leave. 

Also, tonight I went to my friend Brittney's house who just got back from harvest school, to hear stories and get advice on what I should and shouldn't do when I go to harvest school. It was so good to see her again and to hear all about what god did in her and how she's stepping into her new destiny. It made me so much more excited to go and see what god is going to do in me.

This is all so new to me. Dealing with plane tickets, visas, raising support, leaving family, and all the other tiny details that have to be worked out. But in this whole time of preparation, God has created new friendships, taught me how to rest in Him and feel peace and let go of myself. 

I still have absolutely no idea what I'm doing, but I don't have to. I just have to trust Him with the details and Believe that He will work everything out. I'm so excited for these next few weeks of preparation and rest, and then finally being back in Mozambique! 

God has been doing so much in me lately and teaching me a lot. I feel like I'm ready to step into this new season and new chapter. While its all still pretty scary and nerve racking, I'm super excited to see what all God has in store. 

Thursday, August 9, 2012

Living Sacrifice. For Real.

Today I've been feeling super overwhelmed with Harvest School and Tete plans. I'm leaving home for 5 months and I've never been away from home for more that 3 weeks. This is crazy. 

So basically, I woke up freaking out about how long I'll be gone and how fast my departure date is coming up. Then, I went to babysit all day. Then I came home and cried on the couch with my mom for a long time and prayed and worshiped. My mom is amazing. Seriously. She will lift me up in prayer even when I don't think I need it. I love it. After our little Jesus time/sob fest we took a walk outside to clear our heads. 

One thing that we discovered on our walk was that this is all part of the process. A big theme in my life recently has been that God wants me to be a LIVING SACRIFICE for Him. I thought that's how I have been living, until I started planning this trip. This is a huge step in letting myself go. I'm giving up 5 months of my life to follow Jesus' lead. I'm giving up my family, my friends, all of the holidays and my birthday with my family, comfort, air conditioning, constant communication online and on my phone, southern food, my bed, sweet tea, and so much more. But thats the whole point! 

He is allowing me to die to myself. When there is a death in the family, there is always a mourning time. I think that's what I'm going through right now. I've been so worried and teary the past few days. This is God allowing myself to die so that He can come in and be in control of EVERYTHING. That's the LIVING part of the sacrifice. It's HIM ALIVE inside of me! I just need to stop trying to figure it all out and let Him take care of it, while still listening to Him for what I need to be doing. 

I've lived my whole life in a bubble. It's time to break out and follow Him. How could anything bad happen to me? I'm sitting in the palm of my Papa's hand! He's already provided SO many of the finances. I'm so blown away! So, why wouldn't He take care of flights, visa, communication, relationships, and everything else?! 

Keeping my eyes focused on His face and His heart and plan for me. I'm called to lay myself down and let Him take over. So that's what I'm going to do. Prayers are appreciated:)

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Why Worry?

Yay! I'm officially accepted as an Iris Harvest School of Missions Student:)

You have no idea how excited I am. For real!

I got my acceptance letter on July 17 for Harvest School 17. My birthday is also on the 17th. The number 17 has a lot of spiritual meanings but since it is a multiple of 7, it means greater spiritual perfection. wow!

Jesus' plans are just crazy.

What I'm doing now is praying a LOT, getting connected with other people on facebook who are going to HS too, praying for finances, getting paperwork done, praying some more, sending out newsletters, and trying to hear Jesus' voice in all the craziness.

I've been super overwhelmed today. Trying to figure out finances and such. I know that I know that I know that Jesus will provide all that I need in time. But looking at the numbers right now, it looks pretty much impossible. How in the world am I supposed to get around $6,000 by the end of August?! What, Jesus?! To the human eye this is just completely insane for someone who currently doesn't have a job or very much money saved up.

But that's the beauty of it. Jesus doesn't want us to look at things through our human eyes. If we did that, then we would just live in constant fear and worry cause it simply looks impossible. Jesus instead, wants us to look at things with our spiritual eyes. With Him, ALL things are possible! He has told me to go to Harvest School, and He promised that He will provide. So, I'm leaning on that promise. No matter how impossible it looks.

I can't keep living in worry. I need to simply let go and trust. I need to rest and watch Him work it out. I need to listen to what He wants me to do next.

He's such a good Papa God. Why should I have ANYTHING to worry about?! Seriously?! He's got it!

Just feeling a bit overwhelmed and stressed today but I'm trying to rest in Him. I would appreciate your prayers for constant joy and peace through this journey:)

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Tete and Shekinah

Yay! I'm finally getting around to writing about where I'm going and what I'll be doing.

Nick and Marlene Boyd are a young missionary couple who just got married in January and moved to Tete, Mozambique to start their ministry called Pioneer61. Now, these two people are so incredible. I love them dearly! They actually met in Mozambique last year through Iris and that's a whole other story how Jesus put them together. :)

Marlene went to the Harvest School two summers ago and after the school, she moved to Tete for a year by herself as a full time missionary. While there last year, Jesus brought her to a group of boys from the city. There are 30 boys between the ages of about 8 to 18. They are all homeless and live on the streets in the middle of the city in Tete. They are considered the lowest of the low, nobody loves them. They are thieves, alcoholics, into drugs, and just living lives in sin. They have built up a bad reputation for themselves since they steal so much, that everyone in the city pretty much hates them. Even the police beat them sometimes. It so messed up. So, Jesus brought Mar to the boys and He immediately broke her heart for them. He told her that they are who she needs to be ministering to. He  gave her such a momma heart for them.

When her and Nick got married in January, Jesus told them to move on February 20 to Tete and feed the boys and love on them. They are the only people who have ever looked out for them and loved them. Some of them either have a mom or a dad or another family member, but they don't want them so they kick them out in the street. Children in Mozambique just have no value. It's so sad.

So, Nick and Mar moved back to Tete and began ministering to the boys and bringing them two meals a day and bringing them to their church and doing small outreaches with them. Their heart for the boys is to see them completely transformed into men of God and they want them to be the ones preaching in the streets and sharing the love of Jesus in their city. Jesus has told them very clearly that it is not their job to transform them. They have simply been called to feed them and love them. It's Jesus' job to transform them. They bought some land and they are going to build a home for the boys too! It will be called the Shekinah Healing Home. Shekinah is the name God gave Nick and Mar to call the boys. It basically means "the manifest presence of God." The verse God gave them for the boys is Jeremiah 29:11. Since they have been ministering to them, a few of the boys have been transformed and are so in love with Jesus now. It's so beautiful! Although most of them are still stealing and drinking, Nick and Mar know that Jesus will transform them and all they can do is love them with their Jesus love!

Tete was our last stop in Mozambique on our trip in June. I didn't really know anything about their ministry before we went. I already knew Nick and Mar though. We met last year and God kept connecting us in several ways. I thought my purpose in going to Tete was to see them and bring Mar some stuff from Emily, a friend here in Nashville. Well, Jesus had other plans!

From the moment we landed in the airport in Tete, my heart was beating on fire and I had such a peace and it felt like home. I was like "ok what the heck Jesus? I don't even know anything about this city or their ministry or anything. How can this feel like it's where I'm supposed to be? I don't get it!" We landed at like midnight and the next day we took breakfast to the boys and prayed with them. The minute we met them, Jesus broke my heart for them. He told me He wants me to be a part of their transformation. He wants me to love on them too and watch Him transform them.

Growing up with brothers, I'm used to being around boys and I really have a heart for raising up men of God. Nick and Mar have been praying for people to come be interns with them and help them out and love the boys. I had no idea about that at all and the whole week our team was there, Nick kept bugging me about coming back to be one of their first interns. I was like "psh yeah right!  There's no way that's Jesus' plan for me. I just graduated high school. He can't be calling me to come to the other side of the world to love on a group of boys." But, as the week went on, Jesus kept showing me through several ways that that's exactly what He wants me to do. He wants me to go to Harvest School in October, then go straight to Tete and be an intern with them for about 3 months!!!

This is completely crazy and not at all the plans that I had for myself. But that's how I know it's Jesus! His plans aren't always our plans. But His plans are always better! Since this is so clearly what He is calling me to do, I know without a doubt that He will provide all that I need. It's going to take a lot of funds, but I'm not worried about it:) He will provide!

Now that I know Tete is where I'm supposed to be, it was super hard leaving. Nick and Mar told the boys to call me "Titia Brooke" cause I'm coming back to be one of their aunties. That made it even harder leaving because I feel like they are my boys now too! But I also know that Jesus has me here in Franklin for a reason too.

There is SO much more that goes into this story but I'm running out of room on here. If you want to know more, please please please contact me somehow! I would love to share the rest of my heart about this with you!

Friday, July 6, 2012

His Plans

Alright. So now that the word is out about applying for Harvest School, I thought I would tell you what it is and why I applied. 

For those of you who don't know, Iris Ministries is a huge ministry based in Pemba Mozambique. They have bases all around the world, but their main base is in Pemba. The short story is that Heidi and Rolland Baker sold everything they had and moved to Mozambique several years ago and started rescuing children from the streets and dumps. Basically just loving them and feeding them. It started out with just a few kids, and now they have many bases all over the world and house hundreds of orphans and feed thousands of village people every week. They do many different things but their main goal is to love. Heidi's heart is to love any and everybody with the love of Jesus that He's placed in her. It's truly incredible all that the Lord has done in and through her and this amazing ministry. Thousands of healing's, miracle's, and salvation's. So beautiful. 

One of the things that Iris does is called the Harvest School of Missions. What that basically is, is people from all around the world who have a heart for missions, come and live in Pemba for about 2 and a half months and pretty much get trained up to be a missionary, while living in the mission field on base. Heidi and Rolland's desire is to see people radically transformed for Jesus and be trained up and fully equipped to go into the mission field, wherever Jesus calls us, and share the love of Jesus. One of the main goals for the students is that they will become a laid down lover for Jesus. Raising up people who take themselves completely out of the picture and say yes to Jesus and fully surrender and follow His plan. 

When I was in Mozambique last summer, I felt like God called me to go to Harvest School but I didn't know when. I thought it was for this summer, but as you can tell, that didn't happen. I now know why:)

Jesus has called me to go to Tete, Mozambique and be an intern with Nick and Marlene Boyd and their ministry, Pioneer61. I'll explain everything about that later, but I know for certain that this is what Jesus is wanting me to do. I felt like He wanted me to go around October or November of this year but I still felt like I was supposed to do the Harvest School first. But, I thought next summer was the time for me to go to Harvest School, which would mean waiting a whole year at least before I go back to Tete. 

While in Pemba in June, I asked a couple of the missionaries who live there to pray for me about timing for Harvest School cause I wanted confirmation for next summer. At the same time, they both said "well, why not come to the October Harvest School?" I said, "ummm well I think that's too soon and I think I'm taking some college courses and that's just not what I really want to do. It makes more sense to go next summer." Mrs. Amy Lancaster has been trying to get me to go to Harvest School for a long time and she kept bugging me about going to the October school too. 

On the Saturday after I got home, I was praying and asking Jesus "ok, seriously what do you want me to do? I want to go to Tete soon, but You want me to go to Harvest School first. But if I go to the October school then I would go straight to Tete. I don't want to be gone for that long! That would mean I would be gone for several months and miss all the holiday's with my family. I don't want to do this." Right after I said this, I was reading in my message bible app on my phone and the verse of the day was when Jesus was calling His disciples. He said you have to be willing to give up everything to follow me. Including your family and even yourself. 


Literally about 5 minutes after I read this verse, Mrs. Amy sent me a text that said "Hey if you are going to do the October Harvest School, you need to get your application in cause spots are filling up quickly. I'll help in any way I can to get you in!" 

Woah again.

Um ok Jesus! You are calling me to go to Harvest School and give up my life here for a couple months and lay my life down for You, then go to Tete and put into practice all that I'll learn in Harvest School and love on Nick and Marlene's boys they are ministering to. 

This is crazy. Not what I had planned for myself. But SO many things are pointing to this and I know without a doubt that this is where Jesus is leading me at this point in my life. That's how I know it's Jesus too, because it's not my own plans. 

Another big confirmation for me was when my parents found out. I thought for sure they would freak out and thought my dad would ask about how much money and what about college. I was wrong! I was really praying that God would go ahead of me and prepare them and bring them confirmation first so that I wouldn't have to try to convince them that this is what God wants for me. The first thing my dad said wasn't about money or college, instead he said, "well, we've always trained our kids to listen to the voice of God and obey what He says!" Yay, Jesus! Both parents are fully supportive and feel this is what God wants for me right now. 

All Jesus told me to do was to say yes to Him and send my application in for the School then leave the rest up to Him. If I get in, then I know He will provide all the money and everything else, if I don't get in, then it's simply not His timing and I need to be ok with that. 

This is just an act of obedience that I am doing. He told me to do it very clearly, so I did. It wasn't easy, but I'm slowly learning to let go of myself and just say yes and trust Him. 

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

His Voice

Jesus completely wrecked my life (in a good way) while I was in Mozambique in June. So many stories. So many testimonies. So many laughs. So many tears. So many new friends. So much rice and beans. So many beautiful faces. 

I could share story after story and tell you all about the food, sleeping arrangements, bathrooms, airports, and living conditions. But none of that really matters. 

Jesus told me to share the life changing experiences and encounters that I had. I hope and pray that He will give me the words to share and that He speaks to you through something that He says through me. 

I am not a blogger, I have no idea what I'm doing. All I know is Jesus wants me to share my heart with someone, so that's what I'm going to attempt to do one post at a time. 

I went to Mozambique this year and the year before with a team from We Will Go Ministries in Jackson, Mississippi. This year there were 11 of us on the team. Mr. David and Mrs. Amy Lancaster, Jonathan, Olivia, Sarah, Katelyn, Krystal, Reagan, Ms. Nancy, and Chris. They are all incredible people. We became such a family on this trip. So thankful that I got to share all the experiences that I did with them. We were able to be there for each other and pray for each other and grow closer to Jesus together, one step at a time. We were all stretched in different ways and Jesus set us free from a lot of stuff. It seriously means to much to have these people in my life now. Love my new family!

Last year when I went to Mozambique, I felt really overwhelmed with everything. It was my first mission trip overseas and it was A LOT to take in. Major culture shock for sure. I felt like I couldn't soak everything in and really press into the Holy Spirit because I was so blown away by the differences from the U.S. to the poorest nation in the world, Mozambique.

I'm in at a place in my life where I'm completely open to what God wants to do with me and where He wants to take me. I just graduated from high school, quit my job, have no plans for college, I had no idea what I was going to do with my life. 

One of my main prayers going into this trip in June was that I would be able to hear God's voice so clearly in every situation and every circumstance. Last year, He prepared me with the culture shock so this year I was really able to focus on Him and hear His voice even clearer and press deeper into His heart.  

That's one of the main things he taught me. How to listen to His voice and hear His heartbeat. Once I was able to completely surrender myself to Him and His plan and purpose for my life, he allowed me to hear His voice and He showed me what His will is for me. I'll share what that purpose is, in a later post. :)