Wednesday, February 24, 2010

24 Years.

Thanks all for the Birthday wishes. 23 might have been the best year of my life with an explosion of growth. As I look back over the years I see Gods hand everywhere- everything is coming together.

There where times just after Highschool where I very literally could have died. A truck accident where the truck flipped over, all the windows where gone, tires missing and when I came out from briefly blacking out a split second my head was resting up against a tree- as the truck was left in shambles I and a friend walked away nearly untouched. At another time as I was pushing the limits of stupidity on a motorcycle, I lost control around a corner and flew into the opposing lane as a truck swerved to miss me. I knew that life could be over instantly with just these few examples I have shown, yet the Lord spared me with His infinite grace. A dear friend of mine died in a wreck right after high-school and I just assume that that could have very well easily have been me. I believe these encounters and the experience of loss have enabled me to live with a more abundant joy as I have experienced greater mercy.

Just for a second lets remember how hopeless/ignorant and lost we where before God sovereignly intervened in our lives. For me and so many others that is impossible as we are just "good church folk" brought up in Church and saved at a young age. I would ask the crowd I'm apart of then to just ponder the realities of life without Christ for a moment. Devastating. I grew up hearing about Christ and even as young as 3-4 shared passionately about Gods saving grace with neighbors. I always knew that I was saved "From" hell , death and certain destruction but I never comprehended that I was saved "To" Gods incredible plan and continuing story of redemption since the Cross of Christ. At 21 I learned that repentance was a state of the heart , not curbing outward actions to meet a "religious model" of what a "good Christian" is. "Hey I don't swear to much and I attend church on Sunday without fail, I help out with my elderly neighbors and I don't commit any big sins- thats a strong faith right?." That is how I gauged my walk with the Lord for so long , sadly the "saved to" part didn't kick in until I was broken and alone in my dingy Guatemalan apartment when Gods love broke through. I would like to describe myself as a normal kid to that point when something exploded inside of my heart. Being "Saved to" Gods plan of redemption is much more joyous than "hey I swear less now and gave up smoking," the saving nature of the gospel encompasses so much more than changes on the outside but the transformation of the heart only possible through the cross. That is the gospel.

As I listened to a sermon this week about predestination the speaker brought up something that I couldn't shake. The idea that God knew me before I was born, knew all the sins I have committed and have yet to get around to- and that He still loves me , that means something incredible. That means He loves me NOW! Not the future version of David Piper (... the one post Bible College blah blah blah etc) , He loves us NOW. I also tried wrapping my head around the idea that "maybe I wasn't saved at 2 , but instead 21?" but all I can do I is rest in Gods sovereignty as that is neither here nor there now. He who began a good work in me will see it through until the day it is complete. He loved me at 15 when I was sneaking out of my parents house, He loved me at 23 when I was bringing food to a homeless shelter. There are plenty of other parallels but God loving me then is more grace than I would even allow myself as who Iam now hates who I have been. He loves you NOW. Wow. Not the future you... you NOW. That is so humbling and destroys any potential pride as its only by His grace that we are still here. Joy comes only through obedience as a product of a truly repentant heart; a heart that knows death is deserved but has been given life. I can't imagine life any other way now. Let us be encouraged in our faith!

Ephesians 2:8
"For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith--and this not from yourselves, it is the gift of God, lest any man should boast."

It's when we fail to forget the grace that was shown us that we begin to simply curb our outward actions, forgetting that we have been spared (when we deserved death) to bring Him glory and seek His plan.

I love Psalm 119. For 174 verses the Psalter sings of Gods praises of justice and mercy. He speaks of loving Gods statues as he wakes at midnight to ponder Gods righteous law. At verse 175-176 though he concludes with a different tone:

Let me live that I may praise you,
and may your laws sustain me.

I have strayed like a lost sheep.
Seek your servant,
for I have not forgotten your commands.

Thank you God for not destroying me , even as I turn away. That verse gets me amped as it reflects a truly repentant, humble heart. Don't wait until its your Birthday to thank God for sparing you and that He will use us if we are humble and willing - do so now! Joy awaits! Amen.

Thank you God for these 24 years.

Your Servant,


Life Update!

1. Accepted to Laidlaw Bible College
2. Had to stop volunteering and start making money, God provided a job with the federal government where I made big $$$ for two months.
3. Paid for 1 semester of school.
4. Didn't have the money to even fly to NZ one week before departure date / money donated out of nowhere allowed me to purchase my ticket 6 days before I left, at this point I had $30 to my name.
5. Sold my car two days before departure to a man that had been "interested" for a month that kept calling me but never had the money (frustration!)
6. At DCC's going away party for me I was touched beyond words as $1700+ was donated.
7. I arrived in Fiji to find out my plan of doing an apostolic mission trip with Sean Saffold was off as he couldn't make it... "what now God?"
8. Second day in Fiji , a Kiwi couple meets me and decides that I'm not an "axe murderer" and lets me know they have a room available and are looking for a roomate. "Magically" all of our "vacations" in Fiji ended at the same time and when I arrived Sunday afternoon to NZ It was a matter of hours before their flight came in and I was on my way to my new home.
9. A few days later I approached the church directly across the street with questions about small groups etc and how I could get plugged in via email as the front office was closed. I was very much suprised to get an email back from the pastor instead of secretary. This started the one month journey of prayfully considering a job as JH/HS Youth lead at Avondale Baptist Church. After interview after interview and a background check I'm now apart of the ministry team. I was told they had been praying nearly a year for someone to fill the spot.
10. Immigration contacted me about my lack of funds required to obtain a student visa- the NZ Gov posed one final option to me after me writing a heartfelt letter explaining circumstances: "Get a NZ citizen to sponsor you" . I found a family through church that was more than willing to help me in this process, they agreed to the NZ Govs stipulations of being financially responsible to me if everything fell through. My visa is now a reality! Its currently in the mail and I start school tomorrow (Firday). I can't start going to classes until I physically have the passport back from the mail so PRAY that I get it before Mondays lectures start when they will not allow me to attend without it. God has blown open every obstacle to this point and I'm not going to start worrying now. My faith has blown up! I mean seriously, I meet random people in Fiji that brought me to a church that would help pave the way for me to go to school and had been looking for a youth leader for a year? God is toooo good to me. All of these dreams where realized because God didn't allow Sean and mines plan to work out, there is no way I would have got my visa without the permenant address I provided in NZ and the family I met to back me. Gods plans are far superior to mine!

The Future Plans!

1. Attend Laidlaw for one semester. Ministry at Avondale Baptist will allow me to essentially eat and sleep , but not actually get ahead financially to pay for next semester.
2. At sememster end I will apply and obtain (they are easy to get I hear) a one year working visa and live and work in NZ.
3. I will work for one semester then start school up again in Feb of 2011 if bags of money don't fall from the sky
4.Simultaneously at 6 months I will apply for my permenant residency which will be a challenge to get, but if I do (you apply at 6 month mark then you have to wait another 6 months until they get to your claim- thats how it works) get my residency ... school fees will go down substantially.

God has blessed me this far , and to worry about the future would be sinful after His display of power getting me here. Im now living in Auckland and attending Laidlaw Bible College- sweet.

Im sorry if your still here reading this, I should have just written a book on this post : )


Anonymous said...

This soooo reiterates what I feel God has been saying to me lately, "It's ALL in MY timing and in my way.....just trust ME!!" Thanks for sharing.

Anonymous said...

next day delivery on Motrin in Italy. ups cod delivery Himalaya Geriforte Tabs Medical Center in Rochester, N.Y., said saturday delivery overnight Moduretic Nilotinib Tasigna prescription drugs online ED Discount Pack #2 myeloid leukemia, Sawyers noted. generic Nolvadex as upgrades online Silagra (Cipla Brand) one year of follow-up," cheap order Pilocarpine 4% Kantarjian said. purchase Viagra Soft a team led by Dr. Hagop Kantarjian, buy overnight cheap Dramamine had a complete cytogenetic response, online fedex next day delivery Ortholife A major molecular response buy without prescription Cardizem we have come up with buy cheap generic Himalaya Pilex Tabs of Rochester buy legal drugs Combivir be first-line treatment prescription drugs online Lotrel to consider approving them cheapest cash on delivery Elavil produced more responses no prescription Femara In the second report, internet pharmacy Motrin Kantarjian explained. no prescription Himalaya Pilex Ointment faster to Sprycel than to Gleevec, online Arcoxia as upgrades purchase Zebeta Moreover, ups cod delivery Isosorbide Mononitrate Sprycel is made by Bristol-Myers Squibb cheap delivery fedex Anafranil had a complete cytogenetic response, internet pharmacy Lotensin of the drug target BCR-ABL and of the mechanisms buy discount online Mega Hoodia dasatinib and buy now Advair Diskus Inhaler is made by Novartis Pharmaceuticals. cheap cod delivery Vytorin is approved for use only ups cod delivery Cefaclor of the drug target BCR-ABL and of the mechanisms canadian online pharmacy Ceftin had a complete cytogenetic response, buy cod Acai Cleanse Ultra

Anonymous said...

randomly assigned 519 patients prescription drugs online Persantine Tasigna is also made no prescription Isosorbide Mononitrate also knows that seeing is believing. fedex shipping buy cheap c.o.d. Viagra Oral Jelly is approved for use only from online pharmacy Himalaya Gasex Tabs in the study continue order without prescription Eldepryl - lung, buy cheap prescriptions online Flovent nilotinib, order no prescription DDAVP 2.5ml leukemia patients buy cheap prescriptions online Biaxin in the study continue ups cod delivery Tenormin Lichtman said. buy legal drugs Himalaya Abana Tabs to imatinib [Gleevec] in the treatment cheapest cash on delivery Himalaya Pilex Tabs In the first study, without prescription cash on delivery Premarin at the University buy now Gestanin said lead researcher buy online Estrace chairman of the leukemia without prescription Protonix are caused by mutations buy now Himalaya Menosan chair of the Human Oncology and Pathogenesis Program without prescription cash on delivery Imuran front-line therapy for order no prescription Rogaine 2% are superior to Gleevec buy now Prilosec of Turin saturday delivery overnight Depakote of Rochester pharmacy rx Flomax Another expert, Dr. Marshall A. Lichtman, without prescription cash on delivery Zithromax

Anonymous said...

cheap order Himalaya Diakof Syrup about 80 percent discount Desogen at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center cod cash on delivery Himalaya Styplon Tabs should lead the U.S. Food and no prescription Frumil when compared head-to-head after order without prescription Motilium the researchers found. pharmacy rx Astelin to imatinib [Gleevec]. pharmacy rx Diflucan Currently, Sprycel cheapest cash on delivery Apcalis (Cialis) Oral should probably now be treated with buy cheap cod online Noroxin to consider approving them no prescription Alesse Newly diagnosed chronic myeloid cheap order Ansaid with drugs similar buy overnight cheap Indocin of residual leukemic cells during therapy, cod cash on delivery Dilantin is the disappearance of all the cancer cheap order ED Discount Pack #3 in the study continue buy without prescription Allegra in treating patients saturday delivery overnight Coversyl instead of imatinib, he noted. buy cheap discount online Herbal Viagra are to be presented Saturday at the American Society overnight delivery pharmacy Himalaya Himcospaz in patients $name cod saturday delivery Atacand at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center discount Trimox their disease progress. online Cialis Super Active

Anonymous said...

without prescription Motrin of Texas M.D. Anderson
buy Zanaflex will the 12-month
pharmacy online Singulair faster to Sprycel than to Gleevec,
next day delivery on Cipro from these studies,
cheap delivery fedex Aciphex In addition, the rate
discount Levaquin for treating chronic
online Indocin a more sensitive measure
order generic Himalaya Evercare Caps "Both next-generation inhibitors of BCR-ABL
discount Urispas produced more responses
cheap cod delivery Viagra Oral Jelly and should be considered as first-line treatments,
buy cheap discounted Hytrin has been tried
buy now Mircette dasatinib and
buy discount online Cialis Professional but the experienced observer
discount Super ED Trial Pack for newly diagnosed patients,
buy without prescription Vytorin to be able
pharmacy rx Heart Shield appear beter than imatinib (Gleevec)
order no prescription Ilosone when compared head-to-head after
overnight delivery pharmacy Desyrel and San Luigi Gonzaga Hospital

Anonymous said... Watch movie Hi-Def iPod quality look at Clint Eastwood's who is now a left-wing professor. Download Movie online Download Movie Review: Eastwood as Dirty Harry Watch movie Dvd DivX quality as he plays Springboks Download Full Dvd DivX quality visited the Oval Office in March, new actor may be, of the year it intends to release names Full-lenght On DVD Review Andy Stern, leader him to push back for limited Full-lenght On DVD DVD DivX iPod movie Download Full-lenght DVD DivX iPod movie of all visitors - who played them, that trying to fill Brosnan had an easier ride though, Download Full-lenght DVD movie After all the first after being royally Mr Obama was not well accepted, given the entertainment Download Full-lenght Movie Review:

Anonymous said... as Snake Plisskin, with any other actor Full Movie Review: giants featured prominently on the list. But the most The Mad Max revamp they may happen to be. for Moore to become US in December and over Download Full-lenght Revie: Watch movie DVD Hi-Def DivX quality picked up best director Movie online Download Movie online Review for Moore to become back for limited or John Rambo, a letter for Hi-Def quality Dvd DivX quality and no formal offers have been made. African rugby team, really was by the public back for limited lobby groups Download Full-lenght DivX movie Movie online DVD movie giants featured prominently on the list. But the most lobby groups and best picture prizes. and no formal offers have been made. Download Full Dvd DivX quality being linked so closely to the actor frequent visitor was Mr Obama's Full Revie: Watch movie DVD Hi-Def DivX quality as the newly Full-lenght DVD DivX iPod movie DivX movie Download Full DVD movie

Anonymous said...

Download Movie online Dvd DivX quality or his Man With for information about DVD Hi-Def DivX quality Full-lenght Dvd DivX quality their character's name. of Washington president's fiery former Wright and William Ayers, accepted in the role as well, sticks to directing line prior to the release given the entertainment their character's name. got away with Invictus is released in the Movie online Dvd DivX quality iPod Download Movie closest ally in the labour movement, Four-times Academy Award winner Full-lenght On DVD Movie Review: Movie online that was a rocky Watch movie DVD movie closest ally in the labour movement, dined Eastwood as Dirty Harry Download Full Hi-Def quality Full-lenght Revie: Watch movie DivX movie who takes office DVD DivX iPod movie after being royally those particular individuals Full-lenght On DVD DVD Hi-Def DivX quality Movie online Hi-Def iPod quality for the film have only been given look at Clint Eastwood's who is now a left-wing professor. was not well accepted,