Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Traveling


Sosua to Cap Haitien...
We are traveling from the Dominican to Haiti. We are just east of Puerto Plata and will travel to
Santiago then on to Dajabon cross the border and be in Haiti. The next phase of our adventure please pray for traveling mercies.


Monday, March 29, 2010

Leaving on a jet plane!

Blessing to Westjet, their staff on the ground and the crew for the third time as they take us one step closer to Haiti. We will be in transit for a few days but will keep in touch as we can via email and this blog. Thanks for all your prayers. We are overwhelmed at the opportunity that once again lies in front of us. Thanks to everyone that has encouraged us to follow our hearts and God's lead. Please hug our kids for us and the grandkids, give our parents an extra special hello, we know it is hard for them to see us go. To the best "est "of friends, once again for taking up the slack with the farm, grandpa, our beloved Tucker and the house. May you be blessed as you continue to be a blessing to us. Yep double double everytime we see a friend in Haiti. Home in June just in time for haying....one word...THANKS. To each of you, a special place in our hearts you hold, keep us in your prayers and we will do the same.
Blessings, Jussi and Colleen

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Here today Gone to Haiti


It has been a busy few weeks as we have prepared, made final arrangements for space to live, space on flights and organized our lives here in BC. We were prepared to head off to Uganda this year but the events of January 12, 2010 in Haiti changed our paths. So we head off to Haiti this Monday, yep three more sleeps. It is crazy exciting, crazy scary, and crazy fun. Not necessarily in that order. We will be in transit for the first few weeks traveling to see friends in the North of Haiti. Then we will go to Port Au Prince and see family and head up the mountain to work with GLA. www.glahaiti.org Some of you may remember my post the day after the earthquake as many scrambled and called to see if we were home, others where they could give. We had given you the site for giving as GLA and we knew the needs to be great all around. Now we are off, to work with them, we will keep you posted in the next few weeks. Internet will be sporadic as we stay here, there and everywhere, but we ask you to continue to pray for Haiti, pray for the missions there that are working so hard to keep everything going. Pray for us for language to return and new words and confidence. Pray for safety as we travel, our families back home.but most of all pray for the children of Haiti, the babies, the little ones, the orphans and the sick. It is a time in Haiti when God is working overtime to keep the little ones free from disease and hunger. Our blessings to you and your families. Jussi and Colleen

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Prayer from a different viewpoint


Today as I was singing in church I realized the absolute beauty of words and the power of crying to the heavens. God wants us to cry out in desperation, to be down on our knees, to be broken and burdened, not for HIM, but FOR us. I know that when I sing and praise and share my joy of His amazing power I am in a different heart space then when I am crying out in desperation. It says in Ecclesiastes 3 that there is a time for everything but I wonder how often I have decided in the venue of a church service to be the person that is no holds barred crying out to Him. Yes, there is a time for worship, a time for quiet, a time for prayers of request, prayers of healing, prayers for those pre-christian people in our families, but when the Lord burdens you with intercessory prayers for things unseen, He is not asking for quiet quick prayer. I know what Pastor Scott was saying this Sunday morning, when he said we sing loud and pray quiet, the Lord had burdened me with the same thing. I was thinking 'come-on church".
God was working in the service this morning to move me to a new place. He was calling me to a place where it didn't matter who was watching, He was calling me to pray! (In the middle of a song LOL, and I love to sing) Is He calling you to new levels?
In the service a group of us were praying with someone and I felt the Lord tell me ...cry out to Me...I want to burden you..I want to show you the pain I see...show you the hurt behind the eyes...WOW then I was listening!
I know that He calls to us prayer, but now I am reminded once again of the power of our words, the power of down on our knees, crying out to HIM prayer. He can heal, He can do all things from our standing position but humbling us to pray for others in the same way we would want them to pray for us, that is what He was talking about.
Lord as we sang this morning I want to claim to the heavens my commitment to ask for more of you...
(Hosanna)
Heal my heart and make it clean

Open up my eyes to the things unseen
Show me how to love like you have loved me

Break my heart from what breaks yours
Everything I am for your kingdoms cause
As I go from nothing to
Eternity

I found this quote on line, the definition of an intercessor.

"Intercession is praying with the real hope and real intent that God would step in and act for the positive advancement of some specific other person(s) or other entity. It is trusting God to act, even if it's not in the manner or timing we seek. God wants us to ask, even urgently. It is casting our weakness before God's strength, and (at its best) having a bit of God's passion burn in us."

Keep praying..

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

A HEALTHY SERVING


I love this quote, "Mary had a little lamb, it used to be a sheep. Then it joined the local church and died from lack of sleep." I am so thankful that our church realized the need for church family to prioritize, God, family, serving in ministry, work, play and relationships and how each is an important part of our daily lives. I understand God wants to give us the desires of our hearts but we do not have kill ourselves doing church to get it. This blog is not going to be an appeal to serve more or a reminder to balance your life, but a reminder of God's power in us and harnessing that power, serving and remembering by whose hand is the job getting done.

God wants us to rest at His feet. Many think that resting means something is not getting done (that is old Colleen) in the Kingdom. Resting in Him means He is able to fill us up, empower us, motivate us, and feed us. Ever try to hit a moving target? Like a two year old that does not want their face washed and how you break a sweat running to get to the target and praying for good aim. Well God probably thinks the same thing when we pray, "Lord fill me up" When what He wants to answer is "Sit still and I will". What we need is balance, a time for resting and a time for working in the fields; we do not have to choose. Isaiah 40 v 31. But those who wait upon God get fresh strength. They spread their wings and soar like eagles. They run and don't get tired, they walk and don't lag behind.

" It is to realize that in God's grace-land we do not work for HIM, but allow Him to do the work himself through us. Jesus wants to recognize our complete insufficiency to produce works that produce eternal value." Rather He wants to be the One who does the works through us.

In the story of the walls of Jericho they could have prayed Lord crumble the wall, smash it down. Instead they prayed for direction, in FAITH, praying for seven days and God told them He was giving them Jericho as a gift. They moved forward in obedience and trust, resting in His promise giving a shout to the Lord for it would be through Him that the wall would come down. Praising HIM! Guess what! Down came the walls but only because God did the work. They got to see a sign of His power. " As Christians we are not fighting for victory, we are fighting FROM victory.

He does the work, we get the benefits. Today in God's economy nothing has changed, faith is a powerful tool. A tool given to us so that we may share of His work and so that throughout our daily lives we share and His glory is the focal point of the story!

This week I continue to sit still as part of a challenge to ante up on our prayer lives. It has not been easy, I am mover, but I smile at the thought of God trying to hit my moving target (fill me up Lord). As His child, I smile and stop, with a wee sheepish grin and a humble I'm sorry, then remember He is patient, and for that I am thankful.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Listen to the words, the song was re-written to be a fund raiser for Haiti. As we sit in our comfortable homes in a nation that allows us freedoms, with infrastructure, housing, medical, education and plenty of food; one cannot help but be impacted. A very proud people through hundreds of years of turmoil they have never given up...Yes Haiti's flag will fly again

We are praying for you Haiti !

Saturday, March 13, 2010

God's plan...too BIG....focus on the piece in front of you


It has struck me in the last few weeks that not only does God have a plan for us but it is so BIG we cannot find a word to fit. You know when you self talk about where you thought you would be by 30 and then by 40 and so on, you come to realization that there are many things that have happened in our lives that have shaped us into who we are. Some of us come from homes that are calm and ordered and always structured and some like me come from a background of craziness. I mean craziness in a good way. I love that God has hard wired me to be less organized as I age and more impulsive. That he has shown me He can use in many ways most of which I would never have dreamed of. That my love of people and zest for being around people doesn't have to be all the time, and how much I value now my quiet time alone on the farm. I watch TV once a week for House, rarely go on You Tube, Google searches, Facebook, but spend lots of time on writing emails and answering them. I love connecting with people.

There are sayings about how we change, the forwards that poke fun at aging; that as we age we are supposed to be maturing. Maturing means moving to a place of understanding and trusting in God without exception. I know right now some of you are saying you "Colleen you will never mature" LOL but I see that in terms of having fun and doing adventurous things. Maturing in the Lord is a completely different concept. I am so glad that God doesn't give report cards. This week I am lucky to be sitting at a C+. I have second guessed the plans He has started in me, I have lost faith, I have struggled with insecurity, questioned a million little details, felt inadequate for any ministry and called in question my part in the great commission. Praise the Lord the pity party is on its way out. God can use me, God will, and I pray that I will be ready to do what He asks of me, daily and not just ilook at the big picture.
His plan is bigger than we can imagine so we try and grasp the bigger picture, but today He is reminding me, baby steps. There is a Haitian proverb Piti piti zwazo fe niche. Little by little the bird builds his nest. Today I plan to look at today's piece of the puzzle, nothing more.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Lord Teach Me How to Pray

It is interesting how some sermons linger in our brains, how we grab a wee thought and dissect it and then regurgitate it and ponder some more. I have been thinking through the aspect of prayer and also the no holds barred give myself to God sermon. What does that look like, what I am holding onto, what is off limits? I think this type of sermon could be intimidating because most of us are perfect on the outside.LOL It could also be intimidating because we are in denial, and think we are perfect on the inside too. (LOL even harder than the first.)

On prayer: I am so thankful that God meets us where we are. I am trying to ascertain what I felt like as a young adult Christian. Did those who spoke well, who had an anointing and such boldness, intimidate me? Did I feel less than them, or not as powerful, did I question whether God would actually hear my prayers. Absolutely! A fancy smacy prayer with big words was not where I was. I am still not that type of pray “er”. So why do we set standards, although they are not written down or verbalized…we do as a community of believers pray in a certain way. Childlike prayers are pleasing to God, imagine a child praying and they stare in awestruck wonder in faith from the heart. They have no baggage, no history of unanswered prayers, no heartaches covered up with a tough exterior. I want to pray like that. Which brings me to …what is off limits to God?

I pray that my prayers are full of passion, that what God hears is simple faith filled childlike requests. If God calls me to do something, I pray I wouldn’t question the motive, or wonder if there was a hidden agenda. I would unconditionally surrender even the things that are hidden on the outside. I don’t want to pray like anybody else, with eloquence and knowledge and well versed. I am thankful that God meets me, Colleen where I am. I cry, I beg for confirmation, I ask for the world, nothing is too big for my God, I grapple for the right words, stumble and ask for the Holy Spirits’ leading, not knowing what to pray. But we know God hears our prayers.
I want to be willing to give up whatever God puts on my heart for the work of the kingdom. I want the vulnerability, willingness, and humbleness of the women that touched Jesus’ robe. Graham Cooke mentioned that God doesn’t talk to our heads, he talks to our hearts; that is where I evaluate my service. Is it no holds barred, is my heart well protected. Is my heart listening? Is yours?

I have in the past, been asked to share with an old friend, one I had not seen in over 15 years. I had a million reasons why I would not look that person up and share God’s love and the message of salvation. Over a million I would guess, including pride…or being turfed out of the house. In retrospect, that would have been fun for my reputation.

I realize now what a mistake it was, but I was a work in progress and God is patient. I ache that I limited God’s potential, He couldn’t move, I tied His hands. His magnificence could not be shared. I pray Jussi and I can continue to seek God’s will for our lives. No holds barred, I pray that there is nothing holding us back, and I pray for the women in front of me in the express line that is waiting for a price check. God is bringing the mission field to us, how cool is that?