Sometimes the thought of continuing to deepen our relationship in marriage AND move forward in our ministry plans seems overwhelming to me.

It takes lots of time, and most of the time it doesn’t feel like we have ANY time to spare!

Some days feel exciting and as if the whole world is awaiting us. And others it feels like we are sinking into a dark hole that is about to swallow us up!

I value honesty, and thought I’d share some with you tonight. Working for Jesus isn’t all warm and fuzzy, and it doesn’t always look like really cool conversion stories every day. Sometimes it looks like sitting down when you’re exhausted and figuring out how to be responsible with your resources, and have faith that God will provide where you see gaping holes (when you’d rather be sleeping or spending quality time together or with friends).

I know that people in every sphere of life relate to this feeling, I just wanted to share from my heart 🙂

How I Heard God’s Voice P2


A sunset photo taken on Ben and I’s honeymoon in Kauai.

In my blog post titled How I Heard God’s Voice, I shared about how the Lord led me to attend a Discipleship Training School (DTS) through Youth With A Mission (YWAM). At the end of that blog, I promised to soon write “how God led me to where I am today”. That’s what I will attempt to tell you here, although I cannot promise that a Part 3 won’t be necessary. 😉

We are all led by the Lord in many different ways, as we are all unique beings created in His image and likeness. This means, as momentarily frustrating as it can seem, that you simply may not or cannot experience God EXACTLY as I do. It’s incredible. There are many times that I yearn for another human being to know exactly what I have experienced, in order to share it with someone. But when I come to that place, I am always reminded that I don’t need someone else to experience that, because it is my special place with the Lord. What I CAN do is encourage others to seek out their own special place with Him!

As I began to learn about and experience God as a whole Person – Father, Son & Holy Spirit, a whole new realm of knowing Him and hearing Him opened up to me. I believe that when one part of God is suppressed, it is impossible for true revelation to take place in our lives. We may experience partial revelation and receive tidbits of wisdom, but without all three Persons, there is no way we can hear, understand AND live out the Word of God and His will.

I grew up with the understanding that God (the Father) was the big guy up in Heaven- governing over the world and holding all authority. Jesus (Son) died for my sins and I needed to pray the sinner’s prayer so I could live with Him in Heaven. Holy Spirit was an afterthought (how frightening to me today).

What a mind-blowing relief it was to learn that Jesus actually gave His authority to US! And to hear that the Father also holds characteristics of a mother? And Holy Spirit is alive and active, our guide and teacher as we live our days on the earth.

As these concepts (and more) found their way from my head to my heart, I noticed that other areas of my life were being awakened and that God was speaking to me outside of prayer and worship times. I noticed other people’s expressions and felt led to encourage them. I breathed in the outside air and was filled with hope for the future. My eyes took in scripture and my heart felt full. In my conversations with one person, I was reminded of another friend and thought maybe I should introduce them to each other.

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 tells us to “16 Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances;for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” We are to communicate with God all day, and He wants to communicate back all day! 

There are many reasons, big and small, that we seek God’s word and guidance. It could be for a hard conversation you need to have with a friend or what decision you should make for your future. I’ve recently found myself seeking God about how in the world to be a good helper to my husband.

Throughout my 6.5 years in the movement of Youth With A Mission, I have needed to seek God’s guidance many times regarding what decision to make for my future; whether that be for tomorrow, the next month or the next three years. There are always multiple amazing opportunities and sometimes it is difficult to discern what is God’s best for your life. Many things may be good, exciting and fulfilling, but I want to learn how to hear God and follow Him into what is His BEST for my life.

Yes, as I guessed in the beginning, there will need to be a Part 3 😉

Stay tuned

Many blessings to you on your journey of discovering God’s best for your life!




Blessings of 2016

What a CRAZY year it has been! I am so thankful for all of the blessings in my life – most of them being people! This year has been full of new things, transition and celebration. Ben and I began our journey towards marriage, I was able to attend several conferences to strengthen my understanding of Youth With A Mission and God’s dream for this movement, to gain a broader perspective of working in a Maternity Home and to spend quality time with our staff members here at The Nest Maternity Home. Ben and I were married, went to Kauai on our honeymoon and began this adventure of life together! Here are some pictures that I feel capture the big moments of this year. 🙂 Enjoy!

Sorry, they are not in chronological order.

If you click, there are captions!

How I Heard God’s Voice

Many people ask me, “When did you know God was calling you to be a missionary?” Or, “why did you come to YWAM?” Maybe you have wondered the same thing. This is the story I want to share with you today.

Let’s go back – way back.

I feel like elementary school is a good place to start. Elementary school is where you get exposed to all those fun, idealistic careers – like being a veterinarian, a teacher, an astronaut or a scientist (all valid careers, might I add). People start asking you, the cute 8 year old, what you want to be when you grow up. Aside from the momentary desire to save puppies and kitties all day long, or possibly go swim with dolphins, I never had a strong desire or aspiration to a career when I was young.

Another way to ask this same question (what do you want to be when you grow up), is to ask “where do you feel you belong in this world?” I think this might be more helpful for children as they discover who they are; their gifts and passions, and as they interact with the world. Well, I knew that I didn’t belong at school where the social life was a little too chaotic and aggressive, and my math skills weren’t up to par. I did feel a sense of curiosity and draw towards church, but didn’t find the acceptance or validation I was looking for.

Where did I belong?

Well, as High School drew to a close I had to make a decision, so I applied to a Christian college up in MN. I visited the campus twice before graduation, and this is where I feel the Lord began guiding me towards the missionary lifestyle.

It was on the second trip, as we were touring campus after the scholarship day that I experienced my first direction from Holy Spirit (although I didn’t recognize it as His voice until months later). I had this very odd sense and knowledge – I wasn’t going to attend this college. For some reason, although I was accepted and it seemed like the right thing to do, I knew deep down inside that I would never set foot on that campus as a student. Wow, what an odd experience that was. I don’t think I mentioned it to anyone because how weird is that?

Life went on, I graduated and even decorated my party in my ‘future school’s’ colors. What else should I do? I knew I had that feeling, but had no other plan!

It was a month later and I was a camp counselor at Hidden Acres Christian Center when one of my friends mentioned her plans to go do this thing called a Discipleship Training School with Youth With A Mission. Sorry, what? She explained to me that it is a 5 month school where you dedicate your time to learning about God and going to a different country for two months with your team to do an outreach and apply what you had learned.

As a staff that summer, we were studying Francis Chan’s “Remembering the Forgotten God”, which is about the Holy Spirit. Growing up, I never remember my church mentioning the Holy Spirit outside of the ending of your prayer “in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit”. I was completely amazed and thoroughly excited about what this living and active Holy Spirit might want to do with my life.

In my quiet time before my campers woke up, I invited Holy Spirit to speak to me. To this day, my life has never been the same! A few moments after my invitation, my eyes were closed and I immediately saw myself walking around that college campus and felt again that odd sense of knowledge as if I was there once more. Then, my mind quickly went back to the conversation with my friend only a few days earlier about her Discipleship Training School. Yes, I was to dedicate 5 months of my life to learning more about God!

I shared this experience with my family and began researching more about this Youth With A Mission movement. The Lord met me in an intense way in my DTS and the months following, as I learned to apply the truths I had learned.

Through Youth With A Mission, I have been exposed to the hurting world, the ‘least of these’, and discovered my true identity as a child of God. I have been exposed to other Christians hungry to learn how to be an active role in missions and be discipled, and I have been exposed to the alarming truth that “the harvest is plentiful but the workers are few.”

Yes, the Lord has a place for me in His Church – the Body of Christ. This is where I belong! This is who I am, and this is what I want to do as I continue to grow up the rest of my life 🙂


Stay tuned – in a bit I will share about how the Lord led me to my position now.

Jesus and Dishes


This morning I woke up and realized how much I needed to accomplish today – including doing all these dishes (and more), cleaning the bathroom, vacuuming, sweeping and mopping and hopefully taking some things to a consignment store (among other things I would LIKE to get to).

I dread doing dishes. I guess the real truth is that I dread STARTING the dishes. Once I get going, it seems to be alright and by the end I feel accomplished and like my life is a little bit cleaner and happier. So to give myself a little more ambition, I began my day with a cup of coffee in this mug:for-blog2

As I sat enjoying my coffee and wondering whether or not I would ever get up and do the dishes, I had a bit of a revelation.

Sometimes I experience this same feeling when it comes to opening my Bible or just plain spending time with Jesus.

Ouch. That hurts.

But Jesus is so good, and worthy of my time. He truly is what my heart longs for, and the only person who can satisfy my needs. It’s not only that I need Him, but that He desires ME. So why does it feel like such a task sometimes?

Well, just like the dishes require us to step out of our laziness and put forth effort when all we want to do is sit on the couch — spending time with Jesus requires us to take a step out of our complacency and inward thoughts that feel so good to our flesh.

Since when did the Church believe the lie of the world that we should obey the desires of the flesh rather than the spirit?

The dishes are only going to get smellier, and my soul is becoming more selfish by the second. Yet, as soon as I take a deep breath and invite God in, it’s like the dishrag is being prepared and I feel His peace wash over me (pardon the somewhat cheesy analogy). Why did I wait so long?

I must learn to desire feeding the living Spirit inside of me more than the comfort my flesh cries out for. And when I think about it, my supposed “comfort” is not comfortable at all. My comfort consists of worry, doubt, self-hatred and complacency. Gross.

Rather, if I feed the Spirit through communion and fellowship, I receive holy power, peace, knowledge and determination to follow the will of God. Yes, please!

So anyway, next time I don’t feel like spending time with Jesus I will think about my dirty dishes – how much better my house smelled after washing them and also the motivation that gave me to clean the rest of my house!

Wedding Talk

Ben and I will be married in less than 40 days, and that is just CRAZY! 

We’ve begun each day telling each other at least one thing we are looking forward to in marriage and it is building anticipation. 

I am looking forward to the days we can both sit in our rocking chairs and talk about life without needing to go home later. We will both already be home! 


Hot wood chips, cut grass, strongly fragranced flowers.Wet flaming sidewalks after a summer rain, the onset of dew in the evening chill.

Freshly planted fertilized soil. Pine needles rubbed between fingers. Bonfire fumes wafting through the air, grills calling to my stomach. Bats smacking softballs in their high pitched ping. 

Birds singing stories of what they observed that day. Gravel crunching under hot feet. 

These are the senses of summer.