"And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him,
who have been called according to his purpose". Romans 8:28

Friday, May 21, 2010

Chaos, confusion, peace

This past week has probably been one of the toughest, but most beautiful weeks that I have experienced here in Peru. We have been living in the 40/40 training center for over a week now and began classes on Monday. The community here is very unique and I feel so blessed to be surrounded by so many who desire to waste their lives for Christ.

Chaos: As I have been sharing through these post, I been experiencing a great amount of pain in my neck and back which has worsened over the past two months. I met with the leadership here on Monday to discuss my pain and what needed to be done in order for me to feel relief. They care about me and want what is best for me; even if that means going home. We decided that I would miss out on our first week of class, rest and just go to physical therapy. If there was not any improvement by the following Monday (tomorrow), I would go back to Ohio to receive treatment. I had to share with my team that night the decision that was made and I was so blessed by all the prayers and words of encouragement that I received which continued throughout the entire week from both those here and at home. Another setback this week was when my Peruvian partner, Julissa, who I met on Sunday went home on Thursday without any warning. She had such a beautiful spirit and we were instant friends, but she had things at home that she had to deal with.

Confusion: As I went through all of the possibilities and dealt with all that was being thrown at me this week, I experienced more confusion of what to do than I have ever before. I am not the greatest at making decisions and generally appreciate others (especially God) just making them for me and telling me what to do. Along with many others, I have cried out to God for an answer of what it was he was telling me to do and what his ultimate will is for all of this. I know he is more than capable of healing me and allowing me to remain here to serve him, but for some reason he has been fairly silent. Through services, others, and personal devotions, I have heard so many conflicting answers which have only left me in more confusion!

Peace: However, through my times of forced rest, pain, and difficulties, my eyes and heart have been opened and sensitive to understand what it is God is wanting me to learn from all of this. Each trial we go through is there to help purify and refine us, but I hadn't completely grasped what it was that I needed to learn until all that I had taken for granted was being threatened to change. Am I willing like Abraham was with Issac to sacrifice his promise to me that I would bring light into the darkness of Peru in order to show him how much I truly love him and above all desire to be obedient to him? Am I willing to give up my new family here and accept that he might have different plans for me? Whatever happens, my love will be with me and will use me, so why worry? I am now at peace that whether I am healed and able to stay here or if I need to go home and get treatment, I will not be alone and it will all be work out in his perfect timing.

There has been little progress in the past week with my pain. The numbing in my arm is gone and I was able to sit for over two hours yesterday! However, I am in still a considerable amount of pain and am not sure if I will be able to withstand the long hours that are required of me. Tomorrow is decision day and I will let everyone know the next step for my adventure here! Thank you again for all your prayers and words of encouragement, keep them coming!!!
Encouraging passages that I want to share from this week:
Isaiah 41:9-13; Psalm 46,77,86; Phil. 1:16, and Joshua 1:6-9

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