love it.

People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone.
audrey hepburn.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

an update on life in paradise.

i just wanted to share this moment with you...

last Tuesday night mary, sarah and i went out for community outreach into downtown kona.. we were feeling exhausted, wanting very much to rest.. so we decided to sit on a rocky ledge overlooking a sandy volleyball court, with the ocean just across the street from us! -tough life, i know- but what attracted us to this spot was a mother in her mid-30s and her little daughter. eventually we struck up a casual conversation about life and work, her daughter and the future. and as our conversation wore on, little alexa became more and more comfortable with us.. she kept shyly approaching me and saying "five" and i would give her a high-five. it was adorable. then she became bold and starting pulling on my arm, wanting a playmate so badly, i caved and joined her in the sand. we rolled down the grassy hill and built sand castles, played follow the leader and made silly faces. but my most favorite moment with her was when i asked her if she knew who God was.. most of her responses she would exclaim "oh!" ... then i told her that he made the stars and the moon and the ocean and he even made you! i preceded to sing to her.. 'jesus loves me' and 'jesus loves the little children' - - - she smiled and giggled at some points, others she sat quietly, outwardly she wasn't very responsive. but i know that i know that i know one day she'll remember it. the seed was planted. and my heart was just bursting with God's love for this precious little girl. this daughter, whom God made in his image. God gave me a glimpse of his heart for her and for that i am so thankful... meanwhile mary and sarah were able to share the gospel and God's love to her mother. they prayed over her and exchanged phone numbers in the end.. they both said that she was extremely interested and seemed hungry for all that they had to say. it was a beautiful night of simple love. childlike love. God is so good.

side note: a super spontaneous pool party after our crazy Awaken dance party!!! i love my life!
photo cred. eric zoesch.
life on the base is steadily picking up speed... and all i want to do is yank on it's reigns to slow all these precious moments down. to press pause. to stop time and be in this place forever. but that is not possible. i have been soaking in every minute, and reveling in the friendships that have been blossoming over the summer months. with people, but especially Jesus. he is slowly but surely becoming my best friend. oh how i love him. this past weekend was a long weekend, it was so relaxing. i went cliff-jumping. swam in a couple pools. had a bbq at my leader, Kurt's family condo! for a moment i felt like i was on vacation in Hawaii. - - - i have a leader that i get to hang out with every week, who challenges me and walks through this insane journey with me. Eli is unbelievable! such a wonderful woman of God. so gentle, so sure of her faith. filled with God's heart for people. we spent Sunday afternoon together, talking about everything under the sun... and i ended up falling asleep on her couch. God is really dealing with my heart in a lovingly convicting way... i've been so challenged to have a servant heart. to stop looking inward and to start looking outside of myself. I'm reading Dan Bauman's book 'a beautiful way' and in it he says that "serving is the natural overflow of a life surrendered to God" and that "the more secure we are in ourselves and in our relationship with God, the freer we are to serve others"... i am so ready to cease gazing at myself, consumed with what i need or desire or crave or deserve... but instead to look towards loving others because i know that when i do that, to surrender and serve those around me, then i will have abundant joy. i will find that my character has altered drastically without even trying to change it. i don't know if that makes any sense, but i know that God is pressing upon my heart to serve. to love. to give up. my time alone has been enough. it's time to branch out. to reach out while standing firm in my identity which is found in Jesus. - - -16 days is my countdown and outreach is fast approaching.. my heart is being continually stirred up for the middle east. i am so beyond excited to see where God wants to take us. i know it's going to be nothing i'm expecting, but everything that i'm desiring. right at the moment my team is praying 6 times a day, we're rotating for each 'call to prayer' so that whenever they -our outreach nation- are praying to their God, we are praying to ours, interceding for them. it's been so good for us, to get involved before we head out. In other news... we have officially found housing for our outreach, until yesterday we had none. so that is a massive answer to prayer!! - - - my support all came in, praise Jesus! It's amazing how much living away from home, from security and comfort can make you so much more dependent on God for everything. an enormous Thank You to all who have been loving me from afar, i couldn't be more blown away at all the generous hearts that have been behind me in prayer and/or financially! love to you all. - karli
Galatians 5: 13b "Instead, use your freedom to serve one another in love."