“Attempt great things for God – Expect great things from God.” – William Carey
I want to seriously recommend this devotional book to everyone called “Jesus Calling” by Sarah Young. I have had it since February of this year and I love it! I got the book from Kim who works with the same organization that I’m serving with and she is one of our staff in Florida. This book has been such an encouragement to me and it really has shown me that God is such a personal God. Each daily reading is written as if God was speaking directly to you and it also includes some scripture verses too.
When I read today’s reading it really spoke and ministered to me a lot because lately I have been struggling with fears and concerns about the future and it was exactly about that today.
Here is today’s reading:
“I am perpetually with you, taking care of you. That is the most important fact of your existence. I am not limited by time or space; My Presence with you is a forever-promise. You need not fear the future, for I am already there. When you make that quantum leap into eternity, you will find Me awaiting you in heaven. Your future is in My hands; I release it to you day by day, moment by moment. Therefore, do not worry about tomorrow.
I want you to live this day abundantly, seeing all there is to see, doing all there is to do. Don’t be distracted by future concerns. Leave them to Me! Each day of life is a glorious gift, but so few people know how to live within the confines of today. Much of their energy for abundant living spills over the time line into tomorrow’s worries or past regrets. Their remaining energy is sufficient only for limping through the day, not for living it to the full. I am training you to keep your focus on My Presence in the present. This is how to receive abundant Life, which flows freely from My throne of grace.”
– Matthew 6:34; John 10:10; James 4:13- 15
Today was awesome both with the younger orphan kids and the older orphan kids
I started helping out with the younger orphan club a few weeks ago and I have really been enjoying it. Today we had 18 children ages 2 – 11 years of age from 4:00 – 6:00pm. I had so much fun with them! We played games/did puzzles, sang songs, we told them the Bible story of Zacchaeus, they learned a new Bible verse (Luke 19:10) and coloured at the end. All of the kids are so cute! I just praise God for this opportunity to work with them and I’m also so glad that I’m starting to remember their names now!
The orphan chapel for teenagers/young adults was incredible! I prayed that attendance would increase because the last 3 -4 weeks the attendance has dropped. I praise God that we had better attendance today and 18 came to the chapel! Two weeks ago we started going through the book of the gospel of Mark verse by verse and today it went extremely well. We sang some worship songs before the study began and then Dani asked the kids questions from Mark 1:1-20 which was the first section and I was very impressed that they remembered and that was 2 weeks ago too!
Dan continued the teaching today on the rest of the first chapter of Mark. I was amazed how attentive they were and how interested they were as they looked at the different pictures of the different passages of scripture on the screen. It was so great to see the kids reading scripture and having them involved in the study. I really believe that they are understanding scripture in a whole new light, for me too God spoke to me and I also understood as Dan taught in the Romanian language which doesn’t happen very often in church settings!
After chapel in the van on the way home I told Dan and Tabita (they are the orphan mentoring coordinators) that this is such a great approach to the chapel teaching because the kids are not just hearing another sermon but they are seeing it in a whole new light as they are getting personally involved. I told them that I think it’s great how they are having pictures up on the screen, taking it slow verse by verse, getting them to read scripture and also asking them questions so they will remember and understand more. I really believe there is going to be a lot more fruit and growth from the chapel time now of this new approach they are taking with the kids!
When I got back from the orphan chapel I spoke to my Mom on Skype for an hour and almost 45 minutes. We talked about different things but one question that she asked me really stuck with me even after we spoke. She asked me if I was ever in a situation of being on trial for my faith in Christ would I ever deny Him to keep my life or not deny Him and lose my life. I told my Mom that God has made himself so real to me and has done so much in my life that I could never deny Him. Of course I wouldn’t want to be in that situation but I think you would have to know where you stand in your faith before something like that would come into your life.
I told my Mom that even today God has answered another prayer request which was to sell the extra ticket that we had for the Jesus Culture concert. Originally we got six tickets but then Dana decided not to go and Stefan’s friend who wanted to go in Dana’s place also decided not to go so then we were stuck with that ticket. Yesterday I met Berta at the international church who expressed interest in going to the concert but she didn’t have transportation.
I decided to give my friend Ana a call because I knew her church was going and they were going to take a bus so I wanted to find out if they would have an extra seat for Berta. Today I found out that they did have an extra seat so Berta could go with them and also we were able to sell that ticket so she can go to the concert. How awesome is that of how God answered that prayer request! I think it’s amazing how God hears our prayers and sees our needs.
The reason why my Mom asked me this question in the first place was because right now there is a Christian Pastor in Iran on trial for his faith in Christ so I think my Mom was just curious what my decision would be if I was in that situation. I didn’t know anything about this Pastor’s story so I searched on the internet “Christian Pastor in Iran” and I found a lot of different news articles about his story.
Wow, I’m sure he must be a very strong Christian to be in this situation! We really need to lift him up in our prayers and pray for him that his faith in Christ would continue to grow during this difficult time of being in prison and on trial and also away from his family too.