These past several days have come with several blessings and challenges that need different types of processing, and I am grateful that I have friends in my team to help. We recently ministered at a camp for refugees and I have to admit I was very nervous and did not have confidence in what God was calling me to right away. On day one, all of the doubt and nervousness faded away because of what I saw and how Christ was already at work within the people whom we were serving. Our role was to engage the men in many types of ministry but especially to lead the Bible studies and this was my first time leading. Although I was worried that I would not know how to lead, I really felt God leading me and we had very meangingful Bible studies because God led the way. We all were able to learn from each other and it was very fun to watch them experience God’s presence in many ways. I am grateful for this because I have felt that God has put me in yet another leadership position where he has asked me to pick up the local Bible study at Barclay College for men known as “Iron Sharpening Iron.” This is my first time announcing it but my heart is in it because I know it is needed and I am honored to lead it and serve others. I am excited to see how God uses me to lead others.
Our time of helping at the camp sadly came to an end and I wish that we were able to stay because how they loved each other and had a heart for God, it was very contagious and an amazing experience. One reason in particular that I wanted to come on this trip and I also believe that God was in agreeable, it was because I had only ever heard negative things about those who in the Islamic faith and I was tired of hearing everyone’s opinions that I did not want to view this religion the way we were taught. Since I have served with my time to help the many Muslim refugees, my knowledge of Islamic belief has changed for the best. The people we have been blessed to serve are very nice, outgoing, loving, and curious not unlike the many in America. I hate stereotypes and the power that they hold that we feed. Sadly the small five percent of how both cultures go to the extreme define those stereotypes on both sides. I learned in the past several days as the refugees learned from us, those living in or are from the Middle-East are not bad, but are very good people just as several had known that Americans were bad, our service changed their thinking. This week we were blessed to see God destroy those barriers within our service and learn from each other. As we left, many shook our hands and hugged us and I pray that Christ would use them and their hunger for his presence in their service to others.
Yesterday we left Athens to venture out to see the many ancient cities of the Biblical history. So far we have seen Thessaloniki, Philipi, and a small village where Lidia served. To see these many places that once and still do have an enormous impact on the world and Christianity is so powerful to experience. To walk where the Apostle Paul walked and to see the many sights where he had ministered, it is very encouraging. Tomorrow we will be exploring Thessaloniki even more and later this week we will visit Corinth and see what God has done and what he is still doing there. I am so very thankful that God has brought me on this trip and how it is enhancing my faith and my walk with Christ even more, although in these powerful moments I have been stumbling sometimes in worth within the team and what God is asking me to learn and take away from this trip even more than I already have. Many feelings from my past before coming to Christ have made their way back into my life and I know that it is the enemy trying to hinder me and I am thankful that I have a team that cares about me and these issues that I have to work through. God has helped me grow so much in my time at Barclay and he is helping me even more now, but this walk is not meant for me to do alone and I think that is where he wants me to focus. Blessed are those who accept God’s love.
Thank you so much everyone who has been praying for me and our team, it has been a lifechanging experience and it cannot be undersold. I am very excited to see how God uses these moments here in Greece for my service later in life. I am so happy that I can rest in the Lord and when we get back rest will be surely needed but God gives us what this world cant, and that is faith, love, and perseverance. “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” – Phillipians 4:13
God is working through us even when we dont see it, dont latch on to your former self and do not let your fears come to life, I believe fear comes when we do not focus on God’s presence and we feed our own fears which is what the Devil wants. Take it from me and what I have been dealing with this past week, that the pain in the past can forever haunt your future if you latch onto it. It is a doomed life that God does not want for us and if we seek him the pains of the past will lose their power over us and that is when God showed us our potential and it is wonderful feeling to be free of the pain of this world. “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous, do not be afraid and do not be discouraged; for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” – Joshua 1:9
We decide what drives us, or we can decide to trust who wants to lead us to greatness. . .