Monday, December 21, 2015

The Plan

       In response to my post from yesterday, I thought today I would focus on giving everyone a glimpse of what our plans (dreams) are. Some people have questioned whether or not this truly is our intention. I assure you, we could not be more determined.  You have to have goals. Our primary goal is to save souls, as every Christian's goal should be. Our goals are at the mercy of the will of our Lord. We want to do his will, not ours.

        Right now we are planning on moving to Taylor, Michigan just outside of Dearborn. Our target moving date will be in April 2016. We have plans to sell our house and most of our belongings before or shortly after the move. For the start we will be living with my parents (in Taylor) which will be a wonderful financial advantage for starting out.

        We will be worshiping and working with the Sunset church of Christ in Taylor, MI. Please check out their website for details on their good works. This congregation has a ministry to the Muslim community up and running, headed up by a wonderful man named Wissam.  A major part of the work we will be involved in is teaching Arabic men and women to read and speak English. This is a wonderful way to build relationships. You can read about Wissam's efforts in the Christian Chronicle publication. I could fill pages with my admiration for Wissam and his desire to share the gospel, but my words would fall short and not do justice. I will try to find a link to the article featuring his work for the Lord and post it here. Until then you can "google it". ;-)

        While we are there we will be working on several levels. Long term, we want to help plant a congregation in Dearborn, MI. In the meantime we plan to build relationships with the Muslim community and work with the ministry already started. While all of this is happening my husband plans to get a degree in biblical studies.

        This is by no means the entirety of our plan. This is simply to offer you a glimpse of our intentions. We are working with our home congregation (East Allen County Church of Christ) as well as Sunset Church of Christ to get details worked out. As more details become available I will happily update my blog. Andrew and I also plan on opening a (joint) Facebook account within a couple weeks so we can better inform everyone of our journey to follow where God leads. Oh, don't worry, you'll still get the gory details on my blog as well as the occasional dose of humor. I'm sure you were worried about that (can you feel the sarcasm??).

        I pray that God will bless you all. We're in this together.


Sunday, December 20, 2015

Now, more than ever.

          Recently my family decided it was high time we stopped dreaming of doing mission work and started DOING it. We found ourselves realizing that there are certain things one can never wait to be "ready" to start (can you say parenthood??), because as much prep as we may do there are some things you must simply learn by doing. Now, that being said, there is something to be said for preparing, we must do what work we can on our end, and trust that God will do the rest. God gives every bird it's food, but he doesn't throw it into the nest. We can prepare to the best of our abilities, yet we will never be "ready". It has been said that God doesn't call the equipped, rather he equips the called.  My family and I feel we have been called. 

          It has long been a desire of ours to share the gospel in places others may not be willing to go. At first our hearts were led to consider Alaska, but the great amount of financial help we would need was overwhelming. Then, quite suddenly, a situation came to our attention a couple months ago that had been staring us in the face all along. God likes to do that. He takes something that has been right under your nose the whole time and give you a gentle nudge and "ahem". I can just imagine God shaking His head and thinking "it's about time!". 
         The situation that we have chosen to be involved in is in the Dearborn, Michigan area. There you'll find the greatest population of Muslims outside of the Middle East. This all came to our attention before the horrible acts at Paris and California. Did these acts change our minds? No, rather it has strengthened our resolve. We have had an Islamic young man living with us for nearly a year now. He is here to learn English, and he has showed us his culture, and his heart. We've fallen in love with him. He has also opened our eyes to a great need. 

        As Christians we are to love. Love unconditionally, love relentlessly, and love fearlessly. I for one, am ashamed by the amount of fear the Christian community has poured out recently. If we look at 1 John 4:18 we see that there is no fear in love. Then we can look at Matthew 10:28, and see that we should not fear those who can harm the body. The amount of "concern" for our physical safety in this endeavor has been a bit frustrating.  I will not deny the fact that there are Muslim extremists out there that want to destroy Christians. I don't have my head buried in the sand. I'd like to say though, that I do not fear death! Physical death will come to all, but I find a peace that passes all understanding in knowing that I have spiritual life everlasting. We should love our fellow man and show them the light of Christ in our actions, lives, and words. If the fruits of a Christian life are fear, racism, hate, and anger, then I think we need to take a good look at ourselves and realize that maybe we are not doing the work out Lord would have us do. Do we need to ignorantly turn a blind eye to what is sin? No. But can we take a moment and reflect on Romans 5:8? Christ died for us WHILE WE WERE STILL SINNERS. Christ died for ALL. Our fellow humans, be they Islamic, Buddhist, or atheist, Christ died for them. We need to share this good news with them. It is both our responsibility and privilege. There will be many that reject Christ, I am well aware. Yet we need to share and shine the love of Christ to everyone. If you are a human being, then you have been created by God and He wants to share His love with you. Are we or are we not to share the good news with ALL nations? 

       So, now, more than ever, I want to show the world what God's love can do. At a time when people are withdrawing from sharing the love of Christ with the Islamic world, I want to stand up, and stand firm for the cause of Christ and love everyone I encounter along the way. Won't you love too? 

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Opinions on the loose!

It's been awhile. I have been going through a time when I find it so difficult to share MY thoughts because there is an overwhelming number of thoughts on the web. It's staggering. Why would my tiny little cyber voice matter? Would it even be heard? Would I be adding to the chaos, rather than helping to sort through it? These are all questions that I've wrestled with over the past year. I LOVE writing. Particularly about spiritual matters. However, I've been uncertain about whether or not I should. I became so disheartened by the masses of people asserting undue levels of aggression in various blog comments. Not on my blog, but in just about any other comments feed.  Every place I turned people were arguing, and over such petty things! I didn't want to be fueling a fire by throwing one more opinion on the heap of blogs.
            I want very much to consistently write things that make people think, and encourage them. Yet, I was overwhelmed by the amount of information around me. How could I write something on a blog when there where probably 100 other blogs out there that said the same thing mine did. Though the months pass and I don't write, I think about writing almost every day. Maybe, just maybe, there is a reason for this. Perhaps I should not let the months pass again without writing.  Maybe......