Monday, July 12, 2010

"Just have a little Faith!"

July 12th “Streams in the Desert”
“He knows the way that I take; when he has tested me, I will come forth as gold.” Job 23:10

Faith grows during storms. These are just four little words, but what significance they have to someone who has endured life-threatening storms!

The path of faith is one of sorrow and joy, suffering and healing comfort, tears and smiles, trials and victories, conflicts and triumphs and also hardships, dangers, beatings, persecutions, misunderstanding, trouble and distress. Yet “in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us” (Rom. 8:37).

Yes, “in all these”-even during storms, when the winds are the most intense-“we are more than conquerors.” You may be tempted to run from the ordeal of a fierce storm of testing, but head straight for it! God is there to meet you in the center of each trial. And He will whisper to you His secrets, which will bring you out with a radiant face and such an invincible faith that all the demons of hell will never be able to shake it. E.A. Kilbourne

Oh the storms I have faced thus far, some I have written about and others have stayed tucked away. I knew the life of a missionary was hard, but I had no idea it could shake you to the very point of breaking. Throughout the history of missionaries we have seen some have broken, and some have been steadfast. What we may not see or do; is give credit to those that do break, the fact of the matter is they came and they followed God, while others said “No” and choose not to follow.

I think we often forget that His “thoughts are not our thoughts, neither are His ways our ways” (Isa. 55:8). We don’t know what He has planned for those around us, we can only trust and follow Him in what He has shown or asked us. The words of the very talented writer of “Streams in the Desert” bring me immense comfort. When she says “God is there to meet you in the center of each trial. And He will whisper to you His secrets, which will bring you out with a radiant face and such an invincible faith that all the demons of hell will never be able to shake it.”
Maybe one day I will write a book and tell you all about the storms I myself and my team have experienced, for now just know that we are standing in the midst of some of the fiercest storms of our lives. And the only way we are standing is because there is someone who is holding us upright.

So wherever you are right now, whether you are overseas or stateside, whatever trial you are facing know that God is meeting you in the center and He will lead and guide you through this storm. Just have a little faith!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Love Extreme Arequipa 2010

As we say here in Peru (except in Spanish) “Greetings in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ!”

Well, the projects are over and Esther and I have started back to work, just today in fact. Love Extreme in Arequipa and Love Extreme to Iquitos were both incredible. It was VERY evident that both cities were and are still bathed in prayer, this is something that never ceases to amaze me; the power of prayer.

*As I attempt to re-tell all that has happened in this last month, please remember that I may have forgotten or confused a few things…..such as exact numbers. So with that I ask that you NOT quote me on any of this ;). THANKS!*

How I wish each and every one of you could have been in Arequipa Saturday June, 19th to hear Nick Vujicic. We had something like 10,000 people there just to hear his testimony, and the first time he did an altar call EVERYONE stood up. Nick was sure that didn’t understand what he meant so he had them all sit down, and again he asked them “Do you want to know this Jesus Christ, the one and only person who can give you REAL life, a full life?” And this time 80% of the crowd stood. Again Nick had everyone sit and for the third time he asked if they understood his question; now you need to know that Nick had a translator (who was AMAZING, but still sometimes things are lost in translation or just translated different).

And for the third and final time 60%-70% of the crowd stood and accepted Jesus as their Lord and Savior. Praise the LORD!!! Most of them came back to one of the conference rooms with us and we were able to get there contact information, pray with them and most importantly welcome them into their new family. I had the honor and privilege of helping with this part.

Sunday Morning we had a celebration service with recording artist, Tammy Trent and special speaker, Woody Stevens. Once the service was over we had a quick break and then Extreme announced were they are going to next. At this point in the service ALL the Extreme staff was up on stage, all dressed in black pants or a skirt with a white top. I felt an overwhelming since of pride as I stood on that stage, knowing that God had called to be a part of the work He is doing in and with Extreme. And of course who wouldn’t feel a tiny bit prideful (in a good way of course) looking out into hundreds of faces and seeing your Mom, sister and members of your home church and most of them looking at you with tear-filled eyes.

I managed not to cry until Felix Vargas stood before all, with tears rolling down his eyes and with a GREAT and MIGHTY passion he cast a vision and claimed victory for the country of Paraguay. As I was listening to the words of this remarkable man, I couldn’t help but think of how GREAT and MIGHTY our God is! I mean He took a man who was so enslaved to sin and in my opinion probably one of the toughest men to walk this earth and God called Felix by name “out of the power of Darkness and into the power of Light”. And that is exactly what Extreme is doing, Carrying the Light to a dark and hurting world!

To be continued! More on Love Extreme to Iquitos to come!

In His continued Service, Brittany