I Left My Heart In Africa


I have learnt a lt this year. I learned that things don't always turn out the way you planned, or the way you think it should. And I've learned that there are things that go wrong that don't always get fixed or get put back together the way they were before. I've learned that you can get through bad times and keep looking for better ones. This year wasn't always pretty. It wasn't always comfortable. Some things and situations even break your heart. But that's okay. The journey changes you - it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness and on your heart. You take something with you, and hopefully also leave some things behind. I will forever remain humble because I know I could have less. And I will always be grateful because I know I've had less.

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Hadhih Hadia - "This is a gift"


 

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Faking it for Jesus

Faking it for Jesus

What? How does that work? It does, if you're a sinner. I am a very honest person and I want you to fully understand my journey, so yeah, sometimes you're going to think I am an absolute fool. Great! Please think that, because my friend, that's exactly how gross and sinful and foolish I am, without God. Great thing that God doesn't leave us in our sins. Thank God He doesn't. Now of course, you want the juice (news) of what I have done. I thought that I had the right to want. I started to want the things other people have. For example, I saw someone with Ray-Ban sunglasses. I decided I want them, couldn't afford them and started wishing I had it. Even prayed for them. Realizing, I can just ask God for it. I started treating God as a vending machine. I also had the worst mindset: I am a missionary this year which automatically makes people think more of me. (I'm very ashamed.) It got worse. I am in Turkey Istanbul. The people are amazingly friendly here. There are a lot of Turkish Delight shops and wow! The people allows you to taste the stuff and gives it to you for free as well! This is how you get things for free: They see business when they see you. They call you over. You start a conversation with them. Then you pretend as if you do not know what something (example: a chocolate mushroom) is. They give it to you to taste. You walk away. It just didn't feel right. God started talking to me about this. For the first situation He told me: "Ye shall not want." Correct,  it's in the ten commandments.  Secondly I got an amazing verse: For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more. 1 Corinthians 9:19 KJV. God told me how I am manipulating people and being fake to get a little piece of Turkish Delight and to let people give me things. Readers, if you do something wrong but want to live in alignment with God's purpose for you, Keep searching and He will show you your errors: Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you. Philippians 3:15 I am sorry that you have to find out how sinful I am. Luckily we serve a living God who will love us as we are, but won't leave us that way. I am ready to say that I will try my best not to want. I will try my best to become a servant unto all men. That is my deepest desire: to serve in the way God has prepared for me. Challenhe Accepted!  Stay in the outlook for my next blog: I want to write about the Heart of Islam or something like that.

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What do you mean it's not about me?

Wait! What? This is not about me? 

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Vulnerable in Colombia

 Im busy reading this book on vulnerability and shame. Apparently shame does not like it when we talk about it and this is where vulnerability comes in. Its to open up a part of yourself that may be assaulted or hurt by others. So its about the courage to open up. To step into the arena and fight the fight with others who are courages enough. And people who are not in the arena don't have a say or should not influence the way you think about yourself. Your worthiness is in your courage to step out in faith and open up to people so they can see into your core. I am challenged by this... Being a leader has always been about not showing weakness, always having the answers, always knowing what comes next, and always being prepared for every situation. Basically a superhuman...and this is not me. And its liberating to realize this. What I've come to see is that being a leader is being able to make intuitive decisions under pressure and guiding people's ideas towards a solution when needed. Its a process of recognition. A leader needs to recognize ideas and concepts that comes from the team and connect all this info to lead the team towards a greater good. This can be in any situation. Ministry. Danger. Social. Interpersonal. Team life. Conflict. Innovation. New frontiers. Uncertainty. Design. Hosting. Youth meetings. Business. Expansion...Its sort of like a waiting game. Constantly scanning the environment for opportunities to capture and help unfold. Its like a fisherman waiting with a net to scoop the next big catch. Bolivia has been a place of redemption on so many frontiers. So much happened in this country of mountains and rain. We were visited by a few parents who traveled with is from Bogotá to San Gill to Cartagena. After this we embarked on a Backpacker Challenge where we received minimal money and had to go explore our surroundings for a week and meet up in Santa Marta for our next ministry point. Me and Curtis went to Tayrona National Park which is a gem on the coast of Colombia. We met people from South Africa, Australia, Germany, Ireland, Canada, and the USA. Must say, meeting the guys from SA was welcoming. We shared how much we miss friends and family, and I really just enjoyed talking to someone from home. There are numerous campsites scattered through the park and you need to hike to them as their are no roads. We slept in hammocks next to the beach and in tents in the forest. It was a time of reflection on what God has done up until now on the journey. In Santa Marta we were with John and his family and then we went to New Tribe Missions in  Fusagasuga. So here I sit writing this after yet another leg of our journey is coming to an end. I spoke to my mother while here in Colombia and being homesick. I sometimes wonder how Paul did it. Or even Moses. Forty years is a long time to lead people in a desert. I truly have respect for them. It is with gratitude that i write this because I have deeper insights into how much patience and perseverance they had. It is only when your focus is on the final outcome that you find strength to carry on in any situation. It's the same with being vulnerable. In the beginning its awkward and uncertain if you will be rejected or accepted. You can never predict people's response. And that is why the response should not matter. The worthiness, your worthiness, is in the courage to take the first step in opening up...not in people's response. And this is faith. To know that in the end everyone will be better of when we take the first step towards vulnerability. This is the hope in the final outcome...that we are worthy to be loved and appreciated with all our flaws, shortcomings, nuances, passions, values, talents, likes, dislikes, and facial twitches. We are his people and He is our God. He loves us unconditionally and we must love ourselves and others with the same tenacity. This is the hope in the final outcome.
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On being white team...

Leadership gets defined when you are thrown into the back of an airplane wondering if all the team members are on board. Or when, a supposedly agreed upon, 5 minute per person shower, turns into a self proclaimed 10 minute spa treatment with 6 other people waiting for their turn with a "what are you going to do about this" expressions on their faces. Or even that moment when someone tries to convince the guys that lentils have the same amount of protein as a steak. And all this before breakfast.

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Jesus will help us...

I'm being reinvented. Trying new things. Beliefs are broken. New ones are being formed. It's not an easy process. The values Jesus taught are treasures. They bring life. They bring meaning to a world in need. They make our world a better place. The values will change humanity and the way we are living. Feed the hungry. Clothe the naked. Love your neighbor. Take care of the widows. Honor your parents. Don't kill someone. Don't take stuff that don't belong to you. Treat others the way you want to be treated. And then in the end...do this all out of love. Because we can not do this without Jesus. We can not boast in any of our endeavors because it is his values we are living out. And we can not be proud of ourselves for bringing these values to society because we didn't think of them. Jesus did. We can not take any credit. And living these values have nothing to do with you getting a ticket into heaven. That's free. So the only reason to live these values is to show God's love to people. And the values show the love. Not you. You are only doing them. We have no grounds to think we are the business. It's all Jesus. Because if you think about it you would rather stay at home than go give out food. But once you start doing this you will start to see that there is a world in need. That there are people out there hungry for hope. People thirsting for more than a glass of purified water. Your heart will grow to love people and their stories. It is in doing that we start loving. And then we will realize even more that Jesus is the only guy who can bring hope in the final outcome. That he is the one who restores. We can just live the value and not worry about our flaws because Jesus is perfect. And we should remember that Jesus is not a product that we try to sell to people. These values create platforms on which we can share Jesus with people without using words. Our faith is a faith of action. Each one of us should just figure out where we are needed to create platforms for Jesus to show His glory. We set up sort of a stage and wait to see what Jesus will do. It's in the waiting and anticipating that he arrives and blows us away. These values are confrontational. They tend to lead us into dark areas of urban mazes or to desolate savannas or thick jungles. They show us that we are not as great as we think we are and that Jesus is the coolest person who ever lived and is still living. And all these values and actions and platforms should all have the foundation of love. A selfless attitude. And this is where Jesus really comes in. Helping us to be selfless. We forgive because we are forgiven. We love because we are loved. We give because we receive freely. We value because He values. It is in this that we change our hearts towards those around us. To think of them more than of ourselves. To see that Jesus loves everyone. Everyone. He loves everyone. He values each and every person. Every person. That's a lot of people. We need to enter society with humility. Admit that we need help. And that we are here to help. And that Jesus is the only one who can help through us. Through anyone. Through all of us. We are in this together. We need each other because we need Jesus. All of us. Through us

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First journey in Kenya; A good test to apply what we learned during training !

 

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Beauty for ashes♡

Beauty for ashes♡

So, I woke up in my own bed this morning after 7 weeks of sleeping in unfamiliar places with people I hardly know. Now I can say that I have 35 new homes built in my heart. On Thursday night we were commisioned, and man, what a long journey to FREEDOM!!!!!!!!!! 

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The big shift

The big shift

it is in serving the people that you discover something about the heart of God. We are currently spending time in the local community meeting people and playing with kids in the streets.   The way we view community is limited to our environment. We compare what people have to what we have. It is like we deem our standard of living as the benchmark.  Our take on the world is limited to our own suffering. We lack perspective. Their is a world in need and we are blind to what the world really needs...hope. We all need it. Jesus is our hope. A life connected to an unending source.

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We are going to China?!

We are going to China?!

China

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Will You build me a new house?

Will You build me a new house?
"We must be known for hope for the day we live in, as the purposes of God are always great. He will do everything needed, according to His promises for His victorious bride." - Bill Johnson If God doesn’t build the house, the builders only build shacks. If God doesn’t guard the city, the night watchman might as well nap. It’s useless to rise early and go to bed late, and work your worried fingers to the bone. Don’t you know He enjoys giving rest to those He loves?(Psalm 127:1-2 MSG) It takes wisdom to build a house, and understanding to set it on a firm foundation; It takes knowledge to furnish its rooms with fine furniture and beautiful draperies. (Proverbs 24:3, 4 MSG)  My first thought about Laos was: "Why on earth do none of the locals pronounce the S in Laos?" What an emotional but triumphant experience! It was here where Jesus started to prepare us for China.  Laos was so beautiful - The people as well as the the country's rich, tragic history. We stayed in Vientiane. Our time with the local church was extremely well spent and evidently fruitful. We encouraged and supported the church while we were challenged ourselves. Jesus took us on a wild tour of Laos while we are on this journey of self discovery... just learning how to take the baby steps to finally leaping and abounding in our faith. Jesus surpasses all description and everyone's anticipation of good. He is extreme in all the right ways! We had a 'lekker' time! We celebrated Lao new year - a week long water fest!  Our team lived in a comfortable-uncomfortable guest house. Horses running upon a dried, parched land on the border of Laos and Thailand.  We had a wonderful time of fellowship around super food and coffee, did i mention that we had dragon fruit? We celebrated when we had the opportunity to wifi ;) Some of us exercised at sunset with the locals. We had an Australian man who randomly-purposefully spent time with us. We spent time soaking, pondering and praying together. Jesus is establishing my new House on the Rock... in His rest and peace, while He teaches and reveals..  Oh faithful One! My heart is called Your House, a dwelling place for You in my constant brokenness and triumph!
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The Tasteful Travellers

The Tasteful Travellers

“Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.” (psalm 34:8) 

Our journey began on a Thursday morning.

Our mission: Create an awareness of foreign missions and Global Challenge as an outlet and Link up with Past Participants and parents of current participants and encourage them.What we noticed: God has been equipping and stirring up people to walk out the life of abundance where they have been positioned and He just so happened to allow us to be involved in that process…

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