Lyrics from my heart

God is so real. He is so present. He goes before me in every situation. He holds my heart in the palm of His mighty hand. What else can I do but worship the King of kings? Through Colombia, Peru and Chile I just realized again how much God loves me and how much He longs to be with me. I missed home more than ever in Colombia and Peru but after lots of prayer, God changed my heart. And I know now that God has something amazing instore for me in this last few days! 

I really felt it on my heart to share with you the words of a song that I wrote the other day. It pretty much describe where I'm at:

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Metamorphosis

"You've changed." One sentence that people either yearn to hear, or dread to accept.

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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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The recipe of the things of His heart..


Taking a peek back on the journey, I realize how you really only see the bigger picture of God's master plan, once you turn around and look at the memory.

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Brokenness

Brokenness
"You opened up my ribs and played your melody, when my brokenness was all I saw in front of me..."   So, I broke my arm. In Colombia. Playing soccer. Can someone say Waka Waka? Since that first night in casualties I've been comforted by God's promise that it is part of His plan, that He wants to use my casualty for a greater Kingdom reality. Having never broken any bone in my body despite some perilous adventures and other silly games on roofs, you have to be convinced of God's hand when this happens on my journey of faith, in Colombia of all places. And so there I was, trusting God for healing my arm overnight (can you imagine the testimony and open doors?!) and then being disappointed. And so I had to ask myself, what is God doing?! The past few weeks I've been confronted with one great truth: Until you know how lost you are you do not know that you need a Saviour. (Thank you Wayne!). Having known Jesus for a long time and being raised by Christian parents with biblical principles, the story of my salvation was less about realising the darkness inside of me but more about seeking the light that is God. As Jansie put it: the miracle is that He saved me even when I thought I was ok! And so I've been asking myself, do I realise the depth of my sinful nature, how lost I was without Christ? Can I begin to fathom my brokenness, worthlessness without God? Hard questions, that I think should be asked by everyone. Since the beginning of training I've been broken and confronted by sin in many ways; mostly because I started to really read the Bible and because of the environment I found myself in. The reality is the more you get to know God and comprehend more of His Holiness, the more you are confronted by things in your life that falls short of His glory. I've been convicted about the things I've been exposing myself to, books and tv shows, my illegal music, sensitivity, pride and selfish ambition to name a few. My broken-arm journey has in a sense been a real personal one, dying to self and being stripped of pride. Learning what it means to be dependant, journeying on team: love and family. The broken arm became a symbol of my brokenness. And it hasn't always been easy, facing some harsh realities.  The harsh reality that as a Kingdom child I cannot be as independent as I have become accustomed to. The reality that I cannot be good enough out of myself. The reality that I am prideful. The reality that I am a sinner. The reality that I need God. Jesus asks us to be broken, to acknowledge the frailty of our humanity and the inability to please Him out of our flesh. But in the same breath He reminds us that He was broken on the cross so that we can be healed. When we come to Him in our brokenness we are comforted by the cross. ... But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed. (Isaiah 53:5 NLT)  And so, back to my arm. Did I see the miracle that I was expecting? No. Did I see the arm used for a greater Kingdom reality? Definitely. There were some jokes going around about the screws in my arm and the parallel to Jesus. Thanks to the interesting Colombian orthopaedic methods I have two scars on my wrist. Two scars on my arm to remind me that Jesus was nailed to the cross. That my old man died with Him. That I am sinful and useless. But with that the promise: that acknowledging my depravity and incapability is exactly where He wants me to be! His power is made perfect in my weakness!  But he said to me,  "My grace is sufficient for you, for  my power is made perfect in weakness."  Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that  the power of Christ may rest upon me. (2 Corinthians 12:9 ESV) And so, as I learn to use my weak arm again I am also learning what it means to rest in grace. To be whole (and holy) in Christ. To just be myself and let God do it.    Watch out world! *Shout out to all the Colombians and gringos that helped, supported, advised, assisted, accompanied and loved me during this time. I am so grateful that words cannot even explain it. 
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FUSA- celebrating new life!

FUSA- celebrating new life!

am currently sitting in Colombia writing this update surrounded by sounds of a river and jungle. We are at a mission base of New Tribe Missions which is on a Finca (farm) on the outskirts of a town called Fusagasuga. What was once a place that was robbed of its life because of guerilla warfare is now a place that is filled with students and families that have all dedicated their lives to the furthering of God's Kingdom in unreached tribes in Colombia.

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In the marketplace


Our journey took an unexpected turn due to the civil unrest in Venezuela and we were detoured to Santa Marta. The team has had a great time just pouring out what we have received, serving with La Esparanza chuch and South American Missions.  And what an interesting time we've had! The South-Americans have quite an outward focused culture. Since that first week in Sao Paulo I've been amazed by the sense of community facilitated by living on your front porch and in the streets. As a result, outside-church seem to be the order of the day. We've had church and other meetings under amongst others a mango tree with a monkey watching the proceedings from a rooftop, an orange tree, in neighbourhood parks, a city park, a closed-off street etc. The culture has also facilitated a "new" manner of evangelism for our time here... Picture this, a group of gringo's* invading a park filled with late-afternoon, post-work Colombians, inviting them to a central place. Here they do dramas, share a bit of who they are, why their God has the power to save, and a testimony of His grace in their lives. This as been our " gameplan" on a few occasions, and I love it! There is a reason why Paul was found preaching in the marketplace. There is something to this approach that is inclusive and accessible, something that is sadly so often lacking in traditional churches. Something that is fresh and new, it makes people take notice! The story is shared to tourists, beggars, street vendors and business men alike. The story is presented in a simple and pure way with no extra baggage. And man has God shown up! The Spirit moved in the dusky heat, hearts were touched and lives changed through simple conversations fueled by His love. What a creative God we serve - the inclusive, loving, inviting, not-bound-by-church, marketplace God!  *Gringo: grin·go n. pl. grin·gos Offensive SlangUsed as a disparaging term for a foreigner in Latin America, especially an American or English person. This gringo is reminded on a daily basis of how much God loves people! And that He loves me enough that I was made a minister of reconciliation, that if you say you are a Christian but you don't have a heart for the lost, you're missing something! 
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Distant Worlds gets detoured!

Distant Worlds gets detoured!

Our bodies have been described as temples of the Holy Spirit and as clay in the hands of the Potter. It is an awe-inspiring, intricate tool for the Kingdom, made according to a blueprint designed by an Almighty God. 

 
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The Green Team's First Challenge

The Green Team's First Challenge

And so it begins. One overcast morning in Fusagasuga, Colombia, four team members received their first challenge papers as the Green Team. After tearful goodbyes to the residents of the New Tribes base, we donned our heavy backpacks and started the long walk to the "mercado", or the market. 

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When your team becomes your family...

When your team becomes your family...

What defines a family? Does the term only refer to a collection of people that are united by their similar genes? Is it possible to apply this term to ten people you've known for only four months?

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Corneli Brink
Thanx for sharing Chanan. May you and this new family of yours bring light and encouragement to the Amazon
Friday, 19 April 2013 12:23
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