Monday, February 8, 2010

From My Head To My Heart


Technology rocked my world this week, as our teachings were via DVD and followed up by a Skype conference call with the speaker, Matt Rawlins. Cross-cultural education and missions have been taken to a new level. I learned and grew in ways I never expected to all by watching the 2-dimensional image of a man I’ve never met teach about the Kingdom of God. Matt is an American who resides and operates out of Singapore, but was teaching in the Children At Risk School in Switzerland… we then watched those teachings in our classroom in Costa Rica! It was a crazy week. Admittedly, it was sometimes difficult to watch a screen for hours on end every day. But fortunately, Matt’s words penetrated my heart and I now have new perspectives on God and my relationship with Him.

The Kingdom of God is a broad subject to cover, but it wasn’t broad revelation that I took from the week. Specific points that Matt made satisfied answers I had as well as gave wisdom in areas I’d been struggling in. A favorite quote from the week, in reference to our relationship with God, was: “The longest journey you’ll have to take is from your head to your heart.” As someone who loves logic and knowledge, sometimes trying to fit the “concept” of God into a rational explanation or image just doesn’t work. I took some comfort in Matt’s phrase – not that I want a long journey between my head and heart, but at least I’m not the only one who struggles with balancing God both intellectually and emotionally. I need to remember that our God is a God of relationship, whose highest desire is simply to love us and have us love Him in return. God isn’t concerned with us understanding Him – in fact, He makes it clear to us that we don’t even need to worry about understanding Him – He’s pretty much too huge and awesome to begin to comprehend. And in the words of my own Dad, “I’m not sure I want to worship a God that I can understand!” That’s part of the intrigue – God is huge, and our wonder in Him will never fade. When I step back and think about it, I prefer an incomprehensibly amazing Lord over one who fits in my rational, logical human framework!

Local Outreach

Last Saturday, our group traveled to Jaco – a beach town a couple hours outside of San Jose where drugs, poverty and prostitution are prominent issues. We acquainted ourselves with a few of the ministries being run there. One woman from California resides in Jaco and has been building relationships within a very poor river community while caring for its children when they are out of school. Her combination of love and commitment has produced a really fruitful ministry in that town. It was so exciting to see the transformation that God, through the use of one woman, was bringing about in Jaco. We were hosted overnight by a ministry that is reaching out to local youth through a skate park and surfing – really cool ways to meet, build relationships with and minister to the young people of Jaco. I had the privilege of meeting some of the guys who come to the skate park, as well as members of the river community. I’ll be praying about whether or not God is leading me to spend a few months doing outreach and partnering with the awesome ministries in Jaco.


Sex Trafficking Rises on Superbowl Weekend, Volunteers Work Against It

One of the biggest sporting events in the world will be drawing in unusually large amounts of people into Miami, Florida this year - which means sex trafficking will be on the rise to accommodate wealthy tourists for a weekend of partying. Volunteers are seizing the opportunity to reach out to the young girls on the street and offer a hand out of prostitution.

Please Pray That...

-God worked through the volunteers to speak truth and hope into the lives of the girls on the streets.

-The girls who were ready to escape prostitution were able to safely contact the help hotline and find a way out of their situation.

-Tourists and travelers on weekends such as the SuperBowl are not unusually tempted to pursue prostitution or other forms of damaging behavior.

-Volunteers and organizations are able to continue fighting sex trafficking around the world, and that awareness is continually raised.

Shared Hope International

Shared Hope International is an incredible Christian organization working to fight sex trafficking around the world. They focus on prevention of trafficking through awareness, the rescuing of women out of prostitution and trafficking situations, and inner restoration through healing and empowerment.

Klaas Kids Foundation

From governmental to community change, the Klaas Kids Foundation is working to raise awareness about and fight crime perpetrated against children in the United States. The foundation was formed in memory of a victim of kidnap and murder. Klaas Kids is working to change legislation and advocate for the safety of children. They are bringing out societal and future generational change that will better serve the children of our nation.