Everything Changes…

ImageIf we trust our feelings, or previous experiences where we have felt worthless in the outcome, would we be afraid to try again, but do it differently?

I feel, that often, we (as in I) base the outcome of situations on our previous experiences (both positive or negative). If there was a positive outcome when I was courageous and brave…I may try the same “formula” again and expect the same results. If there was a negative outcome when I was courageous and brave…I may not ever try again in fear of the same results: pain, embarrasment, etc. Even in positive experiences, where we saw an awesome outcome, we often hesitate to try something new because we know the “formula” works. If we do “this” then “that” will happen and we will be rewarded. This is also true for negative experiences. If we do “this” then “that” negative thing will happen. Often we are afraid to try again because of the not-so-fun outcome. We then begin to live life stuck in fear and with the inability to trust that the outcome may be different. To trust in the unknown without fear is a common cycle in many people’s lives… *hand raises*… yeah, in mine too. It can be hard to trust the unknown and not live in fear of the “what ifs” and past experiences. We only know life based on our experiences. Well, it might be better to say that our life is shaped by our experiences, both positive and negative. It takes courage, trust, and obedience to try something new, to try again, to get up and believe again, and not let fear creep in. If we never try, we will never know, and then we would live in the ever crazy consuming spiral of the “what ifs”. What if, as babies, we never tried to walk, or stopped trying because when we tried, we fell, it hurt and we cried? If we trusted our feelings of hurt and fear, a lot of people would not be walking today. What a different world it would be! Imagine a bunch of adults, never moving and requiring other adults (who, literally, walked past fear and pain) to carry them around. It’s a pretty silly picture, right?

So, trust our feelings…trust our past experiences will be the same always? NO! Even positive experiences, after a while, can have different outcomes. Each time we  try something, we trust, we believe. We have a choice to believe the hurt will happen again, or we have the choice to believe that the outcome will be different. We have a choice to believe that this time our hope will be restored, our love will be restored, our trust will be restored, our heart may get hurt again but it will heal. I believe this. I am choosing to take courage, to trust, to hope, because I believe that the Lord has a plan for me:

“Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart” {Jeremiah 29:11-13}

Why do I choose to believe this? Because, I would rather believe than live in fear. Believing is hard and sometimes unbelievable, but it’s way better than stupid fear, stupid fast fear.

We sang a song yesterday during church by Bryan and Katie Torwalt, “When You Walk into the Room”:

When You walk into the room, everything changes
Darkness starts to tremble at the light that you bring
When You walk into the room, every heart starts burning
And nothing matters more than just to sit here at Your feet and worship You

For me, it was a reminder that, when we Jesus walks into the room, when we call Him in, everything changes.  Invite Him in when that stupid fast fear creeps in and tries to remind you “it won’t work”, “that will never happen”, “you will end up disappointed…again”. Invited HIM in, invite in Him to reveal the TRUTH of situation, into the experience.  Even if you don’t hear Him, see Him, invite Him in and just rest, don’t try but believe He is there…and trust everything will change and you can try again, with hope and trust that everything will change.

{Go and see what God is doing in Nicaragua!}

“The first time Bethel took a team into Nicaragua, God said, “the mountains are open, whoever gets there first, can have them!” One of our core values is to support the Nicaraguan culture and the way God is moving through them. Each trip since the first, we’ve been blasted with God’s favor through meeting and praying for government leaders and invitations to proclaim the goodness of God on TV and radio. We’ve felt from Papa that it’s time to take the Nicaraguans out into the streets and share the love! We’ll be able to spend time and partner with dreamers who are taking ownership for their own nation! Our time will include: ministry in the trash dump communities, teaching people and ourselves how to get into God’s presence, building relationships with beautiful Nicaraguans and partnering with a new school of ministry. Join us to bring the supernatural love of God to a nation of influencers that is on the verge of transformation!”

(Quote from Bethel Church Missions Dept.)

The first time I went to Nicaragua was a year ago.  I got the privilege to go as a co-leader for a Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry Team. This year, I get another wonderful privilege to co-lead again!  Last year, I fell in love with the people of Nicaragua. I am excited to go back, reconnect with the pastors, families, businesses and churches that we got to partner with last year.

I am so thankful that I get to co-lead with a friend and  thankful for a diverse team of strengths and gifting’s!  (Here is a pic of our team…this isn’t everyone but most of the team (15 total) going to Matagalpa)

As I began to write this lil’ bloggie, the Lord kept reminding me of Pslam 66, “Shout for Joy all the earth!”

5  Come and see what God has done:
he is awesome in his deeds toward the children of man.
6  He turned the sea into dry land;
they passed through the river on foot.
There did we rejoice in him,
7  who rules by his might forever,
whose eyes keep watch on the nations—
let not the rebellious exalt themselves.

I feel like the Lord is saying to us, COME and SEE what He is doing in other Nations, what He is doing in Nicaragua! Rejoice and jump on into the JOY SONG river! YEAH! I am so excited to go back and see more of what God is doing in Nicaragua. One thing I love about mission trips are they are a receive-receive for everyone. Often our church mindset is that we are going to minister those “less fortunate” then us, but what I have seen over and over again is how RICH in FAITH, not “less fortunate”, those that are hungry for more God are, no matter what country we may be going to.  I usually come back more blessed and more encouraged by other’s faith every time. I love going, building relationships and seeing/hearing those in other countries hearts and hunger for the Lord. I love going and seeing hearts healed, hope restored, families restored, physical healings, and just an outpouring of LOVE AND JOY.

This year, we are flying out THIS Thursday and getting to Managua the same day. We plan on staying in Managua for a two nights, going out in to the city and blessing people through prophetic art, treasure hunts and what ever God leads us too. After wards we will take our team to Matagalpa, Nicaragua.  It is here we will be spending most of our time ministring. We will be partnering with local churches/ministries. One of our goals this year is to really connect with the pastor’s of the churches and hearing their heart for their city. To hear more about what God is doing and how they desire God to move. We will be meeting with some phenomenal pastors who carry so much of God’s heart and have a deep intimacy and passion to see their city changed by the Love of God.  We will also be meeting with the local leaders and students of Nicaragua’s first ever School of Ministry!  Most of our time will be in Matagalpa but we will spend a day up in Jinotega and connecting, blessing (and getting blessed) by the local pastors there. We will have opportunities to teach/share on prophetic art, teach the local church members how to do treasure hunts, partner with them during worship times and healing services and possibly get to partner with a youth event!

One of the amazing pulperia owners.

We also will be visiting some local pulperia’s (stores) that were built through micro-financing! So amazing how these families were able to create businesses so that other families do not have to walk miles and miles just to get the everyday essentials.  We also will be visiting and blessing the land/business of a local coffee farm that belongs to the Torrez family .  The Torrez family is just one of the  families that will be ministering along side our team this year. The other amazing team is the Rutledge family (they will be providing interpreters again for us this year).

We have other fun ministry opportunities in the works but will later be revealed. 🙂 I am so excited for this trip and all the love of God that is going to poured out.  My hope is that if you are reading this you will partner in prayer with our team and with the nation of Nicaragua.  Pray for health for our whole team, amazing connections (maybe some government connections 😉 ), glory and more glory, encounters, lots of laughing and joy and ministering out of rest and not a place of striving and that God would show up in even a greater way then we could even imagine…that our boxes of what we think He can do would be opened and put away.

Thank you for our your thoughts and prayers!! I look forward to sharing amazing stories with you all when I get back.

-Sarah

p.s. I will have access to my email/fb…so if you wanna leave me messages feel free.

Here are a few more fun photos from last year’s trip:

View of Matagalpa from Calvery Hill

Youth from a local church near Managua

Coffee from the favorite cafe, "La Barista"