Today’s daily bread . . .
“If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers—most of which are never even seen—don’t you think he’ll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? What I’m trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met.
“Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.”
-Matthew 6:30-34 (The Message)
June 2010 – August 2011… It has been wonderful. Here are some highlights…
This year……wow. And I know the next holds even greater things! I am learning to LOVE transitions. They are TRULY great. The Father teaches me so much through them.
Anyway, I am soaking up this last week in CO…
5 more shifts at California Pizza Kitchen.
1 more hike.
A concert in Boulder.
A few more Santa Fe Trail runs.
No more grocery shopping.
1 more study sesh at Agia Sophia.
1 more time with my Nepalese friends.
Gonna enjoy it all.
Man, am I pensive tonight.
I am an ISFJ according to the Meyers Briggs personality test. I need a place to place my emotions, since I supposedly rarely share them according to this profile. But, this is pretty much true of me. : )
I have had many outlets within my life, most of which involve being by myself. I can’t deny it, I like to be alone.
When I was in elementary school, I would indulge in books. These books encapsulated stories of young girls and their horses, girls who baby sat and had ‘significant’ drama, and of course the adventures of four children who lived in a boxcar. Every once in a while, I would pick up one of my Dad’s old Hardy Boys books or look through my Great Grandfather’s classics such as Don Keyote. I was a dork…glasses and all.
I was big on adventure, even back in the mid-nineties. The expeditions never extended farther than my neighborhood, but I was always prepared. I would pack my backpack with one or more books (of course), a notebook and pen, magnifying glass, and food (always). I would bring my trusty dog, Jack along as well. Jack was my dog (no matter what my siblings tell you). : ) I would find secret spots behind trees and sheds to camp out and ‘spy’ on the suspect neighbors. Oh, it was fabulous. My mind would go wild, accentuating everyday actions of people who came across my path.
When I was about eleven or twelve, shooting hoops was my thing. I never played basketball. I once went to a practice for the Lady Huskies a few towns away, but decided it wasn’t my thing. The coach wasn’t the “nicest” and the girls were way too serious about being top dog. I just liked chilling out, maxing and relaxing all cool and all shooting some b-ball out in the hood. Okay, maybe there was a point I wanted to go pro or something. What kid doesn’t? I would shoot hoops late into the night. I’m sure the neighbors loved me. While dribbling around through my legs and letting that Spalding roll off my fingertips to the rim, I thought about life. Seriously. I don’t recall my deepest thoughts in those days, but they were there.
Then came running. Oh, running. My freshman year of high school, I began cross country. Sure there was that team dynamic that was incredible, but I just as much remember those times running alone. Whether it be while training on back roads in the summertime or striding up a hill at White Clay Creek with an opponent breathing down my neck, it was such a singular, mental sport. I talked to God a lot. There was ample time for it. I can most definitely say that running brought me closer to Jesus. The Holy Spirit taught me new things, gave me new revelations while I was beating my body during those long easy distance runs through the streets of Middletown, Delaware. Go Cavaliers.
Since I graduated high school in 2006, I have been much more immersed in community. Through all this extensive community, I have craved time to myself. I have found it for the most part…except for maybe the year I did Twentyfourseven. That was tough. So, yeah…I still run pretty much every day. And I love sitting in coffee shops, reading, writing, researching. I like people, but I crave that time to myself. Prayer is important, too. I know…I can pray all the time and my prayer is that I would “pray without ceasing,” but that time with my bff es muy importante.
With all this to say, this next year on The World Race is going to be a challenge for me. And admittedly, my greatest fear about the year. I love community. I love serving people. I also love my time to myself. I hope that I can sacrifice more in this area. I pray that God will have His way and give me just what I truly need. I know He will.
Philippians 4:6 “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”
4:19 “And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.”
Sure, Paul was speaking of physical needs in this letter. But I think the word “all” gives a hint. Plus, I know who my God is. He will give me just what I need each day. It may be difficult in many instances, but it is not at all about my desires.
John 3:30 “He must become greater; I must become less.”
Now to go for a run and ponder all this some more. : )
I shouldn’t be blogging. I should be sleeping since I am leaving for the Maroon Bells in 5 hours to backpack. My WordPress dashboard shows 44 drafted posts…yes, that is 44 blog entries that I began, but never finished. I was probably writing 95% these while falling asleep. Hopefully I’ll make it through this one. Apologize for grammar errors. Will make it more coherent later.
So, tonight’s topic is “Divine Appointments.” You’ve heard the phrase. I had one this afternoon.
I got off from work at 3:00 pm and headed over to the Apple store in the promenade. I suppose I was so anxious to purchase my iPod Touch that I wasn’t thinking straight. Left the keys in the ignition and locked the door. I do stuff like this ALL the time. Story of my life. I didn’t really fret, but I was in a time crunch and needed to meet up with some friends within a few hours to head up to the mountains. I called AAA (thank the Lord for this amazing service!) and went inside to carry on with my exhilarating purchase. While browsing, I saw a text from one of my hiking buddies saying she got called into work. We would have to leave later anyway. Relief!
$380.13 later (forgot there is sales tax in CO and should have ordered online!), I walked out to intimidating, dark grey clouds hovering overhead. It was beginning to rain. But behold, Panera was only a few stores away. Perfect. I ordered myself a late lunch of mac and cheese and green tea and proceeded to a table by the front window. I’ve sat at this exact table numerous times as my weekly Bible study meets at this exact Panera. It resides in a nice little in-cove that houses one other table. There was a lady sitting at the other. I smiled and sat down, facing the window to keep an eye out for the locksmith.
Not even after being seated for 30 seconds, the woman (going to guess late 30’s) asked me a question. Her first question…”Excuse me, can I ask you a question?” …in some sort of European accent. “Sure!” I responded eagerly. She asked, “If you had enough money for either situation, would you buy a house and settle down or would you continue with your education?” Of course, this is a loaded question that could have many variations of answers.
My response was jumbled. I told her that I really didn’t know. I told her that hypothetically speaking, at this point I would probably go to school. We chatted back and forth and she told me many of her current issues. She was struggling with direction in life. She told me of how she was originally from Romania and trying to figure out the American culture. She lived in San Francisco for a while working at a bank. She and her boyfriend broke up. She moved to Colorado Springs for a new guy. She showed me a picture of her rather good-looking significant other who happens to be a pilot. Some of her questions…”Should I continue to live with him?” “Should I become independent and rely on myself?” “I can’t trust men, but I hate to be alone.” “Should I buy my own condo and forget the men?” Her ramblings continued. Though kind and lending a listening ear, I sort of half-answered her questions. She could tell that I was at a loss.
She then asked me, “What do you do?”
I told her about my current schooling and job situation. I told her about my move to Colorado the previous year. I proceeded to tell her about my upcoming world missions tour. She was enthralled. She asked my how I did it. “How did you move out here alone?” You are very strong. “When I first moved to the states, I had fifteen hundred dollars in my pocket.” It was scary.
“Well, we have that in common,” I said. That is about the boat that I’m in. She was shocked…shocked at the fact that I was quitting my job and losing money in this missions process.
I told her I could never do it alone. I told her I wouldn’t have done it if it wasn’t for God.
“I’ve been believing in God more lately,” she said. “He is so strong. Sometimes I wonder, where are You?! But I still believe He is very strong. I believe in all that karma.”
I laughed to myself (about the karma comment). But then I had these thoughts…
This was a desperate soul. She asked a stranger for advice.
We talked some more. I told her more about my trip. She told me a bit about the poverty in Romania.
Then, after some more chatting, she began to worriedly tell me about her directional musings again. When there was finally a break in conversation, I asked if I could pray for her. She agreed.
“God, calm Susan’s spirit. Give her a peace. Show her who You are. Give her wisdom and answers about her relationships. Provide a job for her. Give her good friends in Colorado that will be there for her.” Some of the simple words I prayed to the Father.
When I finished, she told me that I should be a priest. I laughed, but then I felt bad because she was dead serious. She was so grateful.
Shortly after I prayed, the locksmith pulled up next to my jeep. I gave her my email and left her with her laptop where she had been vigorously searching for condos in the area.
Thanks, God. Thanks for allowing me to lock my keys in my car. Thanks for having the backpacking delayed. Thanks for the pouring down rain. Thanks for the chat with Susan. Thanks for using my current circumstances (little money, living on faith, and trying to love You) to impact others. Wow.
Thanks for the clear confirmation that what I’m doing is definitely what you want me to do.
This past week has been a total whirlwind. My dreams, my aspirations were crushed. My 4-month trafficking trip has been canceled. I found out just 2 days after my friends hosted a huge fundraiser for me. I had just sent in all the money.
I can’t lie; there were a few tears.
But, of course…I can’t wallow in my sorrow forever. It’s never worth it.
The organization gave me 2 options:
1. Have the donated money refunded to my supporters.
2. Go on one of their full-length, 11-month trips.
I’ve gone back and forth, attempting to logistically figure it all out. There comes a point where logistics don’t seem to matter. That point came and I called up my mobilizer today and committed to go on the September route. I have the same launch date, but will be gone for 7 additional months and will be ministering in 7 additional countries.
Here’s my new, extended route: September 2011 (2)
Ukraine. Romania. Nepal. India.
Tanzania. Uganda. Rwanda. Thailand. Cambodia. Malaysia.
So, yes. I will still be going to all the original Southeast Asian countries and working with victims in the trafficking cycle. In addition, I will be traveling to Western Europe and Africa. This ambition (to travel the world and preach the name of Jesus) I’ve held since I was twelve and even more so in my early high school years when I would stay up until midnight to watch Travel The Road on TBN is looking like it will come to pass. I am truly excited.
Sometimes the logistics of it all still get to me. Questions such as, “Where will I move to when I return to the U.S.?” “Where will I work?” “Will I indeed go back to school?” “How am I ever going to save money?” But then, I realize that the time is now. I can’t keep waiting for the opportune time. This is another “kairos” moment. I love living on the edge. When will I ever settle down? Only God knows.
I want to thank my mom, my friend Kelley, and of course the Father for encouraging me in this.
Here we go now. Ready to rough it. Ready to preach it. Ready to travel the road, yo.
Subscribe to my missions blog here! marissadale.theworldrace.org
I sit here in my nice bedroom, the nicest I’ve had to date. It’s big. I picked out the paint on my walls . . . the color is called “coconut shell.” My bed is grand. I am no interior designer, but the white comforter and huge olive green and rusty red pillows compliment the wall pretty darn well.
I worked tonight. I made $10.56. It was a slow night on the patio with only 2 tables. Despite the perfection of the weather and glorious mountain sunset, customers preferred the air-conditioned restaurant.
I talked to my mom today…like usual. : ) I love her so much.
I hiked Mt. Blodgett with Astrid this morning. The trail was a bit sketchy, but being the daring kids we are, we went on with it. Plus, we talked about God…the best conversation one can have.
About 20 minutes ago, I finished watching the series, “Human Trafficking” in 10-minute segments on YouTube. It was a lot like Law and Order and focused on the ins and outs of the business. I am now increasingly boggled by how complicated the law is in relation to human trafficking. Law enforcement needs to be more aware, more properly trained. The reality is that it’s everywhere.
Now I wonder why I blog about the things I blog on. Who the freak cares about my music tastes or how people are tipping these days or even politics?!?!
I feel as if the awareness is spreading, and this is good. But, why are there still millions enslaved?
The cycle, as I already knew is vicious. Murder. Rape. Money. Rape. Mexico City. Murder. More terrible rape. HIV. Denver. Drugs. TERROR. Brothels. Pimps. Little Girls. People I Know. Little Boys. Young Women. Lies. Portland. Money. Corrupt Law Enforcement. Russia. Sick Minds. TERROR. People You Know. Dirty Old Men. Little Girls. Makeup. Skimpy Clothing. Children. Money. Brainwashing. Control. Rape. TERROR.
I want to throw up. My eyes pouring.
It’s hit me again… I’ve come to the place where I know this is it. This is what I’m supposed to dedicate my life to, second to my Father.
“The Spirit of the Sovereign Lord is on me, because the Lord has annointed me to preach good news to the poor. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim freedom for the captives, and release from darkness for the prisoners…” you know the rest. -Isaiah 61
Do I believe this?
The problem seems far too ramped. How will I do this?
“The Spirit of the SOVEREIGN Lord is on me…”
I pray that He will use me in any way He pleases to execute these words in the above passage. It will all be “for the display of his splendor” as it reads later on.
I can hardly believe that I am going over there…to the place where this terror is most known…SE Asia.
I am frightened. I know that I have no reason to fear, but the fear remains.
I’m coming down to where you’re standing, captive. What will my words be to you?
Lord, give me strength…cast out the fear…set the captives free.
I’m copying my sister’s Summa Playlist. Yeah, I have a lot of deeper things on my mind, but I don’t feel like thinking too incredibly hard right now. Plus, I might just help you find your new fav tune.
1. Be Thou My Vision – Ascend The Hill
2. Darlin’ Do Not Fear – Brett Dennon
3. Uncharted – Sara Bareilles
4. Runaway – Mat Kearney
5. Strawberry Swing – Justin Robinett & Patric Johnston
6. Next to Me – Sleeping At Last
7. Life Coach – Fang Island
8. Disarm – Ben Rector
9. Fire and Dynamite – Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors
10. Don’t Fall In Love – Matthew Perryman Jones
11. Love Lost – The Temper Trap
12. Closer To Fine – Indigo Girls
13. Betty – Brooke Fraser
14. Perfect Situation – Weezer
15. Song For You – Jenny & Tyler
16. The Perfect Space – The Avett Brothers
17. Little Lion Man – Mumford and Sons
18. Faithful – Shawn McDonald
19. Zion & Babylon – Josh Garrels
20. There You Are – Lovelite