Monthly Archives: January 2010

Captured by leggings…


Have you ever asked God for a Birthday present? I mean a simple request that God will give you something, a present only from Him and in a way that you know it is His specific gift to you.
Well, that was my prayer yesterday. I wanted a surprise, an intimate reminder that He sees me and celebrates over His daughter.
So, Ralph went to the store as usual, since he is the errand man around here now, with a list in tow. Bravely, I requested a pair of leggings. “What are they?” he asked. Sending a man to do the business of ladies clothes shopping- not such a good idea I feared. So I explained that I need these things to wear under some dresses and I want them in black, size medium. “Just tell the clerk” I said, “she’ll know what I mean.”
Ralph went to a grocery store and surprisingly did not find the leggings there. The kids were restless so he cut the shopping short and took them to a park to run around. As he sat down under a tree, there on the lowest branch was a black article of clothing that caught his eye. Being the only people around he checked it out and there to his amazement was my request- black leggings, size medium that looked brand new.
When he came home and handed them to me I burst into tears. They also had detailing on them that I wanted but could not even begin to describe to Ralph. Let’s just say they are simply my heart’s desire in leggings.
God used the simple thing of leggings to capture my heart in a new way with His goodness.
He is reminding all of us, “You have captured my heart, my sister, my bride, you have stolen my heart, with one glance of your eyes.” Song of Songs 4:9

(Ralph also surprised me with a little birthday party- pictured above)

A Day in the Life…

Just to give you a taste of our daily life here, I am sending you my Discipleship Training School schedule. Here is a general idea of a typical week for us at the University of the Nations, Kona, Hawaii. Ralph is with the children during the mornings while I am in class. He also does an excellent job as our housekeeper- cleaning and doing errands.

6:30- 7:30 Breakfast

8:00 Worship for the entire base which is at least 500-600 people. This is only on Monday mornings. Ralph and the kids join in. During the rest of the week, Ralph and I use this space to give each other a break for quiet times with God.

9:00-12 Class (not simply listening to speakers but engaging our hearts to encounter God) There are 79 students in my class and 5 of them have spouses and children, so including staff and their families there over 100 of us.)

12-1:00 Lunch

1:00-3:00 Prayer Room
The campus has set aside this corporate time to minister to the heart of God in worship and then a time of intercession for specific nations and YWAM ministries.

3:00-5:00 Work Duties
Every student has a job to do to keep the campus running smoothly. Ralph and I take turns cleaning up the playground, maintaining our building and cleaning the preschool. Lukas loves to help us too and has befriended a Korean ESL student. She calls him her “English tutor” as they chat and pick up leaves together.

5:00-6:00 Dinner

MONDAY NIGHT

6:30 Ministry Time
An evening led by the speaker for the week. Time to pray for each other.
Last week our speaker prayed for many people to be physically healed and God moved in amazing ways. A woman who was deaf in one hear could hear again and another person who walked with a limp- God caused her leg to grow on the spot, completely healing her.

TUESDAY NIGHT

6:30-9 Community Outreach
We go out onto the streets of Kona, sharing the love of Jesus to the residents and tourists

WEDNESDAY NIGHT

6:00 Campus Wide Meeting (Worship and Speaker)/Firestarters for Kids
Basically a church service for the base. All students and staff gather for worship and to hear a speaker. There is a program for kids that is run by the parents so we take turns in the kids classes. Lukas and Lily are both involved.

WEEKENDS

Saturday and Sunday are basically free! We try to have some family time and I catch up on reading. Our textbook is the Bible and we are reading most of it during the next few months. We have enjoyed outings to the beach and even visited a local church today.
Also, not listed is the times that we will squeeze in to meet with our outreach team and one-on-one times with a mentor. God has blessed us with an older married couple to mentor Ralph and I.

Hope this helps you get a better picture of our life here!

University of the Nations Kona

Arriving at the University of the Nations campus was absolutely overwhelming. DTS staff helped us haul our luggage to our room and after we dropped our suitcases on the floor, they prayed for us which left us in tears – finally we have arrived! The campus is like an oasis. Green tropical plants everywhere, beautiful flowers, palm trees and even a pool. Our building is right opposite the dining area and is surrounded by playgrounds! The campus is perfect for Lukas and Lily! No cars, lots of children… so wonderful!
We also attempted our first walk into Kona with our “new” stroller. The tourist town has a lot of palm trees, touristy shops and a public volleyball court. Climbing back up the hill was sweaty and hot! We are not used to temperatures in the 80’s (almost 30 Celsius), when we just came out of cold winter…

Hawai’i … Restoration

As our plane made it’s way over the endless blue Pacific ocean, we began to descend and catch glimpses of our “Promised Land” for this new season of life. The Big Island appeared to be a massive black volcanic rock with bits and glimmers of green life peeking out among the boulders. It surprisingly did not look like our image of a tropical paradise. It felt more like landing on the moon than Hawaii.

Though all around us is new, yet we feel God leading us into a time of restoration of the old. Restoring our first love focus for Jesus and restoring the dreams, visions and life that have been buried or hidden during the past season of testing. God spoke to us the verse Psalm 71: 20 for this new life:
“Though you have made me see troubles, many and bitter, you will restore my life again; from the depths of the earth you will again bring me up.”

A tangible picture of this restoration came in the form of two fellow Youth With a Mission workers who we met at the airport. One, named Elam, happened to be sitting behind us on our flight to Kona. He also is from Lancaster county and recently left the Amish church to follow God’s call to mission. As I heard his testimony of being shunned by his family to follow God’s plans, tears came to my eyes as I recalled the many prayers I had prayed upon moving to Lancaster County ten years ago for God to touch the Amish community. Standing before me was an answer to those prayers; a restoration of the things God had placed on my heart.

Then in the van, on the way home, I met Wen, a young Chinese woman who shared with me her testimony of growing up in China, moving to the US at age 12 with her family and meeting Jesus a few years ago in University and giving her life to follow Him. She too was on her way to do a DTS. We both were in tears as we discovered that she is from the same area of China that we focused on during a prayer team 12 years ago. Another answer to prayer standing before my eyes and restoration of dreams almost lost.