Greetings from sunny California!
These past several months have been filled with many changes, emotions, and an overwhelming sense of God’s provision and love. I had the privilege of working with Rachel Kuhn with the Extrememoble and promote the work that Extreme is doing in Peru. I enjoyed the many churches and camps that we visited and the connections that we made. It was a great opportunity to begin working with Extreme and to feel a part of God’s plan for the people of Peru.
During my last semester at Mount Vernon, I learned the beauty of Godly friendships and that every season in our lives must come to an end so that another one can begin. Though it was difficult for me to leave the beautiful Christian community that God had formed during my time at MVNU, I knew that it was necessary for me to leave so that I could touch even more lives. I graduated in December with a degree in Social Work and Spanish. My experience at MVNU was truly transformational and has prepared me for the work that God has called me to in Peru.
At the end of December, I went to a prayer conference that I have gone to for the past few years. While there, I encountered God in a way that I never had before and he revealed the need for me to love myself and find rest in him. I had been so caught up on serving others and putting their needs before myself that I was getting burnt-out. He challenged me that if I want to “love my neighbor as myself” then I needed to first find love and worth in him and allow him to lavish that love on me so that others could also experience that same love.
I’m sure if you have ever flown before you are familiar with the instructions to first place the oxygen mask on yourself before placing it on others. This used to always aggravate me and I would think “how selfish is that to not help out your own child or an elderly person sitting next to you”? I wasn’t just going to help myself and let them die. I now understand why that was so hard for me to grasp because I always put others ahead of myself, even at the cost of my own well being. In order to serve and love those around us, we need to make sure that we are getting enough “oxygen” and intimacy with God. I knew this was something that God wanted me to grasp before going into the mission field. It wasn’t until I had a forced time of rest after a sledding accident that I realized the value and importance of proper self care and rest.
Also during that time, God showed me how much he wanted me to go to Peru by providing in abundance for my trip. The week before my accident I was $2000 short of reaching my goal. The week after my accident, I was told that I was $800 over the amount that I needed! The money has continued to flow in and I am humbled at God’s provision through his beautiful and obedient servants!
I left my home in Ohio on Thursday and am now spending some time with my sister in California before heading to L.A. to begin the exciting adventure with Extreme. It has been difficult to leave behind my loved ones because I have been so blessed and have such a strong support system. However, I know that this life is not my own and that Jesus, my betrothed, is calling me to follow him wherever he leads. Thank you all for your continued prayer and support! I can definitely feel God’s peace and comfort sustaining me during this time and I know it’s because of your prayers! I hope that you all are doing well! The next time I write, I will be in Peru!!!
If any of you are interested in sending me mail the old fashion way, here is my address in Peru:
Avenida Lima 110