Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Life On Mission In South Georgia’ Category

 

Matthew 17:20

 He replied, “Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”

 

It has been 6 weeks since I have written a blog post. I have now been in Georgia for 4 months and I love the area. I have had to take a step back and focus on what God’s purpose in this move was. I have been hibernating a bit this past 6 weeks. I have been working on obtaining my certification in biblical lay counseling. I have been conquering my anxiety issues. I have been spending time with God and discerning where He wants me to serve. When I moved down here, I was determined that I would not take another go- nowhere -stress-me-out job that doesn’t pay enough to live on. I want more than that. I have always had a missionary heart and I wanted to move here to serve the community. I had a couple of false starts, but I have found a community ministry that fits me like a glove! Living Bridges Ministry is in Valdosta, Georgia (45 minute drive from where we currently live). The ministry is moving into a new building and has some really AWESOME programs for those living in Valdosta.

Clothing Closet

Mom’s Connection Group

Transformation Group

Community Garden

Kid’s Connection during the Summer

Seasonal events

and more programs in the works

I am excited to get plugged in and to see where this goes! There will be a pastor who will have an office there to provide counseling. Does it pay? No, but the opportunities to serve others through programs that God has given me a passion for is worth the sacrifice. If I can be that example of a living and breathing faith then that is what I will do. It is scary, but it is also exciting. It is such a rush to see how God is going to work when we step out in faith with no safety net. I have no safety net. I am completely dependent on God to provide for my car insurance, gas to drive 1 1/2 hours a day to serve and my other expenses. It is exhilarating, but it is scaring me silly! Faith the size of a mustard seed. A mustard seed is very small. God, being fully aware of our human nature, only asks us to have the faith of a tiny mustard seed in order for Him to work on our behalf. I made the move to Georgia. I have dwindling funds. I have no safety net. I have faith in a God who has always gone before me, stood beside me and watched behind me. He has my back.

I start my new adventure on Monday. There is no better job than being able to follow my missionary heart in community ministry and love others to Jesus in this beautiful city of Valdosta, Georgia.

 

Advertisements

Read Full Post »

 

I have been in Georgia for almost 6 weeks now. Things have not gone according to MY plan! I planned on coming down here and immediately getting plugged in to a non profit ministry for single moms. I had this set up before I moved here. When I got here, the organization only needed volunteers in the thrift store. I did volunteer in the thrift store a few hours, but then had to seek God’s guidance and re-evaluate. I wanted to work with single moms. That was my heart and so I let this go.

Before I moved down here, I had planned on being involved with an emergency shelter for women. It was a mix of women from different backgrounds, not just single moms and that was fine with me. I have a heart to see ALL women made whole through Christ. I was actually offered a job as an assistant house manager. I was given a sample schedule to give me an idea of the hours I would be working. When I started to calculate the hours, I started to panic a little. Every other week from Monday to Monday, I would work 108 hours; 4 over night shifts from 5 pm to 8 am and then the weekend from 8 am Saturday morning to 8 am Monday morning. The pay period was a total of 123 hours, ALL at minimum wage (7 something an hour). Over time was not given. After talking to my 3 daughters, who all said that they would not do it, I declined the offer.

At that point, I was discouraged. Okay God, what now?

I found another single mom ministry in the other direction and tried there. This ministry has monthly meetings for single parents, so I contacted the executive director and offered my help. I received one short reply and then nothing. I messaged a couple of days before the event, again offering my help and asking when I needed to arrive. I know that she saw my message the same day, but I did not receive a reply declining my offer of help until 2 hours before the event.

In the meantime, I have been filling out applications for every job possible and getting nowhere. Not even an interview.

Okay God, what’s the plan?

I had found a program for certification for Biblical lay counselors back in January. I had pursued a degree in Psychology at one time, but really wanted to become a Biblical counselor. When I found this program, I prayed and prayed and decided that if this program was in God’s will that He would provide the funds for the program. I told God that I would know it was His will if He provided the exact amount I needed for the program. I never told anyone. It was between me and God. I waited and prayed. Right before my birthday (which is June 8th) I received the exact amount of the program in cash. I am now pursuing a certification for Biblical lay counseling. I know this is God’s will, but what am I going to do with it?

In my daily devotional time, I was crying out to God for an answer. Eventually, my money will be gone and what then? I felt this whisper in my spirit, “get connected to a church.” I had visited one church and didn’t feel like it was the one for us. We visited another church this past Sunday and I am going to give it a chance. I am going to connect there and see where God leads.

So, I am digging into God’s Word and growing in my relationship with Him. I am the kind of person that needs to see the big picture. I need to see 10 steps down the road so I can prepare for what is to come. God doesn’t work like that. He gives us one step at a time and then tells us to wait for the next step to be revealed. Maybe, my plan to serve single moms is not God’s plan for me. Maybe, I am to counsel women from ALL walks of life who are hurting and have been broken by the chaos in this world. God knows that I am more than just a single mom. I have had enough painful life experiences that I have a true compassion for ALL women who are suffering. If this is the plan, I am okay with that. I just wish God would give me a clue!

I have to admit that my biggest worry is money. But, I hang on to faith and trust in a God who provided the funds for my counseling program and who has never once failed me in any way. It is a stretching of my faith. I pray. I dig into the Word of God. I work on my counseling program. I grow in my relationship with God and I wait (somewhat patiently) for God to reveal the next step. It is making me completely vulnerable and dependent on Him. It has thrown me out of my comfort zone and pushed me to surrender ALL of MY plans. I am empty of myself. I am completely and wholly at God’s mercy. I am a vessel totally surrendered to Him and ready to be used. He has brought me to a place of complete and total dependence on Him. Isn’t that where He wants us to be?

I will continue to update as my journey in Georgia continues. I have to say that I love it here. I already feel that it is home.

Read Full Post »

 

My last day of work was Saturday, May 4th. I thought it would be more emotional. It was bittersweet saying good-bye to the Sisters that I have grown to love and some of my co-workers, but honestly I have had a love-hate (mostly hate) relationship with the job for the 8 years I worked there. I was surprised that I felt nothing. There was no anxiety. There was no doubt. There was only a looking ahead to the future. I am assuming that the lack of emotion means that the time is right for me to launch into a new adventure.

On Friday, my co-workers had a carry in for me and surprised me with some going away gifts. The gift I will treasure the most is a coffee cup that says, “She believed she could so she did.” It inspires me every time I read it! She believed she could. Do I believe that I can accomplish my dreams, my God given purpose in Georgia? Yes, I do believe. Although, I can’t do it alone. It is only as I partner with God am I able to accomplish all that I set out to do. It is not in my power alone that I can do anything. Matthew 19:26 tells us that with God ALL things are possible. That is what I hang onto. In God’s power She Believed She Could So She Did.

Read Full Post »

 

A year ago Kiowa was stationed in Georgia and we talked about me moving from Indiana to live with her. I visited her for a few days and loved the area. I hesitated at the time because military life can be unpredictable and I wasn’t sure how I would fit into that. So, I put it out of my mind. In the meantime, my job was getting more stressful and my anxiety climbs for months before Winter makes it’s ugly appearance. Kiowa visited for Christmas and after hearing my sob story about work and the Winter she told me that I need to come live with her in Georgia. I said yes, but still I hesitated. During a particularly harsh winter, I made up my mind that this would be my last Winter in Indiana. I would no longer go to work when it was -9 degrees. I would no longer break my door handles when they froze up and wouldn’t open. I just couldn’t do it anymore.

I gave Kiowa my answer: YES! I would move to Georgia. I prayed and prayed and decided to trust in God. After all, He is the one in control of ALL things. I gave notice to my job on March 5th. My last day will be May 5th. Yes, I gave 2 months notice. I have been there for 8 years and decided to give them plenty of time to find someone to replace me. As soon as I gave my notice, I felt a peace that surpasses ALL understanding. I felt a peace that can come only from God.

I will be volunteering at a non profit that serves single moms and looking for a way to pay the few expenses I do have and help my daughter out with household expenses. I will plug into a local church. I also want to start a training program to become a certified Biblical lay counselor. I will go and get involved in the community and see how God works. I have not worried as much about not having a job or health insurance. The key is for me to go and get involved in the community and allow God to work in my situation. It has been a bit strange since I am a natural worrier with an anxiety disorder.

The last few days have been a struggle with my mind. I lost my focus and did start to worry. My thoughts started to spiral out of control and I wasn’t sure about the non-profit or a church or finding some sort of income. Satan rears his ugly little peace stealing head and tried to steal my focus and peace. He is the author of confusion and keeping me confused about my purpose in moving to Georgia assures that he wins. I WILL NOT ALLOW THAT TO HAPPEN SATAN! It is a struggle to stay focused. It is a struggle to trust some days. I surround myself with life giving Christian songs and scripture. I pray for focus and peace.

My last day at work is May 5th and I drive to Georgia on May 13th or 14th. I will pack up my few must haves in my SUV and drive the 11 hours to my new home. Kiowa is supposed to arrive at some point to drive back with me. Talon graduates high school May 8th and Cree graduates from Indiana State University on May 11th. I have three weeks left in Indiana. I will leave behind four kids and four grand kids. I will also leave behind the Sisters that I am sure will make me cry before my last day. Change often involves sacrifice. I am blessed to have kids that have given their blessing and want what is best for me, even if that means giving me the freedom to move 11 hours away from them. I am excited to start a new chapter! I am also getting a bit nervous. It is getting real. I spent 22 years in So. California where I was born and raised and have lived in Indiana for just under 27 years now. So, it is time to shake things up a bit and see what the next 20- something years bring me.

Isaiah 43:18-20

18 “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. 19 See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.

 

 

 

Read Full Post »