Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Reachable // New Tribes Mission


Image result for witnessing for God quotes

I have watched the below video several times and each time, I cry with the missionary lady. Why, because her wish is my wish, for another life to serve Him somewhere there is no witness.  Several things the missionaries said fit right into USA culture. No, we are not in a remote area, cut off from civilizations.  Living out in the country in the states does not count as remote.  

One  thing they said about the Panari people sounded just like people in America.  Most don't see themselves lost and of need of a Savior.  We have EVERYTHING  we could ever possibly need to fill our empty lives with.  In  both places it is only the Word of God that will penetrate hearts.   It's hard, very hard to continue to pray, share, love on, learn more about someone, pray some more, present the pure Word of God, it's hard.  I am finding it hard to witness in states with a church on every corner.  People are more surface here.  just like those people in that tribe.  Much easier to talk about sports, politics, latest movie, tv programs, then the deeper meaning of life. 

Recently I joined the YMCA at my doctors suggestion to build my body up for a future knee replacement. At first I kept my eyes on the instructor, not being unfriendly but paying close attention to what she was telling us to do.  Then a sweet women started talking to me, and ask the normal questions, are you from California? no, well how long have lived here?  Four years. Next questions, why did you move here, where did you live before?  Ok, God, you did not bring me here just for the exercise, look up Betty, see the tribe I have placed before you.  

You see I just can't talk about surface thing for any length of time,  I am driven by a inner desire to go deeper.  Don't get me wrong,  I am all for relationships building but with the understanding I am a believer in Jesus Christ.  I don't think Jesus talked on the surface very much, He went about His business of telling He was the good news.  So I know if I get into a conversation with someone one this is going to come out. 

It just so happened the sweet lady who begin to talk to me was a believer and from that point on she took over telling everyone I was a missionary, saying to  them,  you should hear some of the things she has experienced.  

Our class instructor usually has us do, row, row your boat , gently down the stream as we do rowing exercises.  She said to me, lets sing, this is the day, this is the day that the Lord has made instead.    When our song stopped,  it was evident not all were in agreement but we kept singing that day.  Since then another woman has started talking to me, she sings too, so we three broke out with, It Is Well With My Soul as we did leg lifts in the warm water pool.  I am waiting for someone to tell us they are offended by our song.  

Why am I telling you all this and why this video?  I need desperately to be reminded that it's hard to get the gospel out there, EVERYWHERE. I desperately need to be reminded it's worth it, and I desperately need reminding God is wanting me to do more then just exercise my body which will profit little the Bible says.  So,  five days a week I get in my car, drive to the YMCA, my remote place at this time and get in that pool praying that by divine appointment I get the opportunity to share Christ.  As much as I wish I could be young again and go back overseas I am reminded God is not through with me yet...as long as I have breathe in me He wants me to speak  up for Him, to the tribes around me. 

  I really hope you enjoy this video. 


                                               

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

. People Pleasing



So often when I write, and re-write and re-write, change, rephrase, add to' and take away words, sometimes whole sentence  it's because I am concern of offending someone or causing someone to stumble or most of all of being misunderstood.  God knows I want to be wise in what I write or say. 

So while I have been doing a Beth Moore study on Breaking Free God  has been plowing up the ground in my heart   I  did this same study several years ago.  And like all good truths it's good to re-study so God can go deeper with it.  With about 8 year of plowed ground in my heart God again begin to bring to the surface  rocks that had been buried deep.

One huge rock  was a bit of a surprise because I thought I had dealt with pleasing others so many times.  This huge one was tied to someone who loves me and  I love dearly and I want their approval more then anything at times.  When my  extroverted passion offends this person my freedom goes right out the window.      I swing two ways when this happens. One way is to try to explain myself again, and if that does not work, I swing over to saying nothing, you know, the silent treatment.  Either way my mind is consumed with trying to get that person approval.   
 "Beth Moore states it this way.  Anything we try to put in a place where God belongs is an idol.  God created us so that He alone fits our deepest need. " 

This rock was so big I needed help to get it out.  So I did what comes naturally, search the web.  Bet you thought I was going to say, search my bible...well I did do that too.  

Our egos love to be approved of, it validates us.  When my ego is tied to someone other then Jesus we are on rocky ground. Because they are not perfect people either. 

People pleasing is a terrible investment, because it depletes our time and energy.  Just think about how much energy you waste by obsessing about what other people think of you or trying to strategist your action to appease others.  This does not mean we are not to be a considerate and generous person. 

It is selfish to be a people pleaser.  Why? Because being attached to pleasing others is really about you.  You are the one who wants to be liked. (Ouch).  You are the one  who does not want to upset anyone. You are the one protecting yourself from conformation, hence by withdrawing. Or lashing back then feeling guilty about it.  And you are the one who is withholding expressing who you truly are.  (Ouch, ouch and ouch) And by doing all those things, you are keeping the light and love from the world...and that is selfish.  
                                                                                                                                                                   It's good to  remember:

No one else determines your worth unless you allow them to.  No one else can dictate what you deserve.  

Other people's reactions, responses and feelings are not your responsibility.  (this was a good one.)

Someone else opinion of you is not the truth.  Your value does not come from how others perceive you.       

What other people think of you is none of your business. YOUR business is between you and God.     ( http://www.christinehassler.com/   )  


As always the bible is best for putting things into perspective.
1 Thessalonians 2:4 For we speak as messengers approved by God to be entrusted with the Good News. Our purpose is to please God, not people. He alone examines the motives of our heart.





Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Get up, try again...

For the past year we have been watching our one year old grandson, Reedley learning to walk.  His ability to fall, stumbled, get up, fall again, over and over and over has finally produced walking up right for longer periods of time with less falling.  There were times when he just screams in frustration when he wants help and it does not come fast enough or times when he doesn't want help.

Taking care of him is a challenge because he is able to get around so well without any fear.  Often, we put up a make shift barrier to keep him confined to one room but his wiggly body is like a mini contortionist, he always finds a way out.

His face shows the wear and tear of any  one year old boy fighting life battles with floor, chairs, siblings, objects. But the smile that burst out through the bruises and bumps is just about as close to heaven as one can get here on earth.

Soon, sooner they we would like, he will run through life,  gaining more knowledge from each fall and tumble, learning how to jump over objects in his way, like superman, able to leap tall buildings.

He'll think he can do it on his own and we who love him know some lessons are only learned by stumbling under the weight of self.  Unknown to him at this time of  his life parents and grandparents are watching out for him.  

Just watching this process has encouraged my heart for there is no age limit to falling and getting back up again.  To Reedley, a fall down a few stairs may be the biggest trial he faces today.  They will get bigger though, the wounds will go deeper and scars are not just for the one year old.


This song is a reminder to this older child of God, that I am not  alone in this journey, He is always watching me.   Sometimes  He put barriers out there to protect me, sometimes He  allows me to fall but He will always be there to pick me up with His promises. 
Romans 8:18 - For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time [are] not worthy [to be compared] with the glory which shall be revealed in us.




Thursday, July 21, 2016

Saved


The pictures is not the clearest but the it's clear enough to give a strong message of how important what New Tribes calls, "holding the ropes" for our missionaries is.  

I wrote several things that came to me as I viewed it and  deleted it.  Why, because I want to hear your response to it.  


Ok, comments please. 

Monday, June 27, 2016

Wisdom on a napkin

Due to our ministry as Member Care Reps we travel a lot which means we eat out a lot.  As we meet with missionaries on home assignment (known as furlough), I gleam a lot of wisdom from each one of them.   As we sit over good food and cup of coffee, I am always looking for something to write on when I leave my notebook in the car. eager to catch a thought I will grab anything and start scribbling.   I no longer trust my memory and have been known to write even on my arm when there is no paper or napkin.

I don't know which couple we were meeting with when something they said caused me to write this down.
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"Work out your salvation, not work for your salvation".   

What a load that phrase lifts off my shoulders for I know I could never work enough to be pleasing before the Lord.  In the working out my salvation there comes failure to be obedient and then I become discouraged.  Th enemy of my soul would like for me to believe God is discouraged with me too.

Recently I read a message from Isaiah 42:2 that blessed my heart and made it easier to "work out my salvation". He is never discouraged because He is God and He knows the work He begun in me He will finish.  God does not, can not, will not fail so He cannot become discouraged when we fail in our progress of growing in Him.


Image result for quotes on working our our salvationHe has known from eternity past where the planets would be in their orbits right at this moment. He has known all along our  government and world would be in this mess, yet He is not downcast or  frustrated or uncertain how things will turn out. In fact, He has not only known these thing, but has ordained them.

I love this illustration:  When a parent stays calm during a problem their children will draw from that. But if a parent  is distressed, whining and fearful  those  children  will usually fall apart completely as they watch their parent come undone.  But a calm, confident, assured  parents speaks volumes to  the children.  Their actions and words  will remind them, it's ok, it will be alright,  do not be afraid,  I've got you,  those children will usually calm down even though the situation might not be the best. 

Our Heavenly Father has no fear about what is happening in your life right now, or in mine.  He is not callous or indifferent, He is utterly confident and competent to fulfill His promise to us, that the work He has begun in us, He will finish.  He will not be discouraged with us.  That calms my soul and brings freedom as I work out my salvation.

Friday, May 20, 2016

Tears Will Never Stain the Streets of That City

  Loss involves change, change involves loss. Loss involves death of one kind or another.  In II Corinthians 4:11 Paul says, For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus sake, so that His life may be revealed in our mortals body.  "Every time we are delivered over to a death of any kind, we encounter a challenge to allow the loss to bring gain for Jesus sake.  

Our Father would never allow our hearts to break for trivial reasons. And He does not want us to waste it either or lose our faith because of a loss. And He does not want us to be in bondage to our loss to where we are rendered ineffective for Christ.  

The life of a Christian is never about sameness. It's always about change. That's why we must learn to survive and once again thrive when change involves heartbreaking loss.  We're being conformed to the image of Christ in our losses.  

"Joy and effectiveness may seem to pause for a while as grief takes it's course, but those who allow their broken hearts to be bound by Christ will experience them again. Our Savior is the God of resurrection life,   no matter what kind of death has occurred in life of any believer."
Beth Moore

Almost daily I am ask how I am doing since my mother died.  I always answer the same, "I am doing well most of the time.  But there are days I will on purpose listen to a song such as the one below to remind me this grief I feel is not forever.    Our tears are a gift from the Father for here and my goodness can I let them flow as I take in the precious truth of songs that remind me my loss is not in vain.   





What song or songs do you turn to when loss enters your life?  

Sunday, April 24, 2016

God Loves Seekers

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People aren't argued into salvation, but that doesn't mean you shouldn't be informed and educated. It also doesn't mean you can't have healthy , vibrant discussions or debates. Just keep in mind that (ultimately) it's God's sovereign power, truth, and love that changes a life. Above all, focus on being an expert in His truth and love. Allow God's Holy Spirit to do the internal arguing and convincing for you. 


Bottom line: We depend on the supernatural work of God, not on our persuasive abilities. Bobby Conway

About three weeks ago I was on a plane heading to Illinois to be with my mother who was dying so my heart was heavy.   I did not pray, God give me a good seat mate, someone I can talk Jesus with for I was in no shape to really talk to anyone.  

Even before we took off the man sitting next to me started the usual conversation one has on a plane when forced to sit close to someone you don't know.  Are you from California?  Why are you going to St. Louis?  Then, I ask the man, why are you going to St. Louis?  What he told me was so interesting I had to ask more questions and soon we begin to get past the first level of getting to know a perfect stranger.  I don't even know when the conversation turned to spiritual things but it did turn.  His interest in science was impressive, especially  as he explained how scientist are  studying "life after death" , and they don't have an answer yet.  But they are sure there is something out there.  The fact they are seeking impressed me, God loves seekers, the wise men were seekers, all who went to hear Jesus speak were seekers.   The man I sat next to was a seeker. 

I am several weeks away from that plane encounter and having time now to look into  some articles on why science is seeking life after death.  Today I ran across an article by John Lennox, an Oxford mathematician, a scientist, a Christian.    He was debating this topic:

                                             Can Faith and Science Coexist?  

"THE MATHEMATICAL INTELLIGIBILITY OF NATURE IS EVIDENCE FOR A RATIONAL SPIRIT BEHIND THE UNIVERSE." JOHN LENNox
First,  I was amazed that I could grasped some of what Lennox was saying in this debate, his vocabulary is enormous.  Second, I am thrilled to know there are Christians involved in the lives of other scientist.  
I probably will never see that gentleman I met  again, but our conversation sparked an interest to seek out information into what does scientist believe about God and the here after?   Here is the bottom line, I want to be able to discuss difference between beliefs and come away from it knowing I was able to honor God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit in my words.   I do not have to prove anything to anybody, I just have to give out truth in love, and leave the rest to God. Not one thing the man said made me doubt my faith in God or believing Jesus is the only way.   "There is something there" and  I know who it is, I know the one who created whats out there.  And in some ways it gave comfort in a time when my heart was heavy knowing I was facing seeing my mother leave this earth.  I stepped into her nursing home room ready to be there for her because God was there for me.  

In this debate John Lennox was defending his belief in God over  the deep issue of  suffering on this earth from a Christian perspective and I love his answer.

 Is there anywhere evidence of the existence of a God whom I can trust with this deep issue? Yes. At the heart of Christianity there is a cross. The central claim of Christianity is that Jesus Christ is God incarnate – which raises the question: what is God doing on a cross? At the very least that shows me that God has not remained distant from human suffering but has become part of it. Furthermore, Christ rose from the dead, which is a guarantee that there is to be a future judgement. This is a marvelous hope, because it means that our conscience is not an illusion, and those who terrorize, abuse, exploit, defame and cause their fellow humans untold suffering will not get away with it. Atheism has no such hope--for it ultimate justice is an illusion.

Wish he had been on that plane and part of the conversation I had.  But God took this heavy hearted simple women and gave her the privilege of talking Jesus with someone.  You know I am praying for this man...he said, I gave him some things to think about.