Thursday, December 19, 2013

Dreams, Letters and a New Year

It has been a while since my last blog I felt it time to put 'fingers to keypad' and close out the year blog style!

We have been busy with missionary life.  Homeschool weekdays and travel weekends.  We have been everywhere from NYC to NC to VA and all over PA.  Tired...yes!! We have taken December at a little slower pace because January starts the running all over again.  Thanksgiving we were able to spent with Mike's family in NC.  Christmas will be with my family in upstate NY.  We still call Avon, NY "home".  It is nice to have a place to 'lay our heads'.  God has been so good to us.  I stand amazed everyday as He comes through in ways that only He can.

A week ago Mike and I were laying in bed exhausted.  We were chatting about how tired we are becoming.  Raising support has many highs and lows (ummm yeah no surprise there) so we had hit a low that night.  Anyways instead of allowing our thoughts to proceed into the land of negativity, I simply prayed and asked God to fill our dreams with confirmations.  We went to sleep and woke up.  I had nada...Mike had nada.  OK...gee thanks God...way to comfort your kids when they needed just a little something from you!

Mike leaves the room and Joel comes running in.  Eyes bright and shiny.  "Mom, I just had a dream...I dreamed I was in the biggest Norma's in Germany (our favorite grocery store there) looking for peas (yes, he only likes peas in Germany).  As I was waking up 'something' told me I would miss Germany when we didn't live there anymore.  Mom, it made me have a tear in my eye."

Well, son it made me have a tear in my eye too :)

Anyone that knows us knows this story is a 2-fold answer to prayer:

1.  God more then confirmed to us that He has this all under His care.  He didn't choose Mike and I for the "dream".  He chose the one who needed it even more then we did.

2.  Joel has been having the hardest time with the idea of moving to Germany.  He has been pretty vocal about it to.  He is my boy that likes to do things the same every single time (I think he's the milkman's kid ;).  I tell people it is like this *we go to the park, swing in the red swing, slide down the blue slide and then get ice cream.  Next time we go to the park we had better swing in the red swing, slide down the blue slide and get the same flavor of ice cream or to him it is not the same and he feels like he didn't 'go to the park'.*

Ever since the dream and what he heard, he hasn't said anything about not wanting to go to Germany!!!  He seems at peace about it all now.  I love how God works His way!!!

I have been contemplating many things going into the new year, as we all do, getting ready to make some new year resolutions.  I was reading an Our Daily Bread (I 'steal' them whenever a church has some sitting out.  Last months was a large print one, loved it for those early mornings when I can't see. lol).  I read one whose verse has stuck with me.

It was called 'Living Letter'.  The verse used was 2 Corinthians 3:3 "clearly you are a letter from Christ...written not with ink but by the Spirit of the living God."  It got me thinking about my life.  I want to be a well written letter.  I want all that "read" me see God shining through each line of my life.

What do people 'read' when they look at your life?  Do you read as a fake, a phony, proclaiming the Christian walk with your mouth but when your life is read it is a tragedy?  Do others read you as negative, lagging in faith?  How about superficial, a politician keeping both 'sides' happy.  Work buddies love ya because to them you read similar to their lives.  Church people love ya because you turn the chapter to "churchees 101" Sunday morning.

Our lives should read Jesus everyday.  There should be a constancy to our lives.  I love to read but nothing drives me more crazy then reading a story that fluctuates and seems to go in all directions.  Almost as if written by a few different people with no consistent smoothness to it.  Will there be times in your life that the reading takes a negative turn? of course.  Will there be doubt, hurt, disbelief? of course. Will there be joy, peace, fun? of course.  Our lives are to be exciting full of adventures.  Full of real life experiences.  It is what we do with the things we are handed that should read Jesus.

My prayer for you going into the New Year is that your life reads like an incredible adventure novel. Full of strength, overcoming things that have held you back for to long.  I pray everyday as you walk through your day people read the things they need most.  That you begin to touch lives and see them transformed by God's grace shining from you.  I pray you become very aware of how YOUR LIFE STORY is being written!!

May you have a Merry Christmas and a very blessed New Year!

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Why Germany?

"So why Germany?" gets asked of me from time to time and I love to mess with people and say, "well why not?"  Ok so I get a kinda confused looked from that answer like 'oh I thought you would say God is calling you or some other highly churchy answer.'

Of course first and for most God has called us beyond a shadow of a doubt to Germany!  I feel it so deep in my heart that is consumes my every thought.  We have sold everything but what we put in a 10x20 storage unit.  We left our friends, family, great neighborhood, an awesome school district and all that we know for this calling.  I would never have begun this endeavor if I wondered about the calling of God to Germany.

After my sassy answer I unload the unknown facts about the spiritual state of Germany.  Gut wrenching statics that most of us can't even comprehend.  We think of Europe as a 1st world continent and by all means it is!  They have most everything they need physically.  Jobs, homes, family life etc...But what you find when you look at the spiritual side of Europe is that it is full blown 3rd world!  They are so incredibly deprived of God.  We can't seem to understand that because our Christian roots came out of Europe.  Martin Luther and other leaders rose up from there and had a hand in shaping our spiritual beginnings as a nation.  So we are under the impression that Europe is a 'Godly nation' what do they need missionaries for??

Most people in America have 'heard' of God through one form or another.  A grandmother that prayed for them growing up, a neighbor that took them to the local VBS, or an annoying uncle that would 'preach' to the family every reunion.  Someway, somehow most Americans have been touched by 'religion'.  They are in a sense sitting around the cross.  They know but just need to make the choice to accept Christ as their savior.  For most Germans this is NOT the case.  There are not many Bible believing grandparents to pray for them, no neighbors to take them to VBS because in most cases there is not even a local church! No annoying uncle to point out their faults.  Most Germans have not even met someone that has had a real encounter with Christ.  There are less then 2% of born again Christians in Germany.  That number drops to less then 1% in Berlin.  In fact Berlin has been named the atheist capital of Europe.  Throughout Europe we are looking at 3 generations that have not heard a clear presentation of the gospel nor know anyone who is serving God to look at for an example of how to be saved.

Let's put this into prospective.  A pastor we met while there this summer has a church in a city of about 50,000.  He has been pastoring there for 15 years and has 35 members.  Did I mention he is the ONLY Evangelical church in the entire city of 50,000 and in 15 years has only 35 members and by German standards that is considered good!! "Wake Up strengthen what little remains for even what is left is almost dead" Rev 3:2

So what are we doing there?  First and for most we will be evangelizing the lost of Germany.  2nd we will train new leaders and pastors to do the work they have been called to.  3rd we will be planting churches, we have set with our partners there the goal of 200 churches in the next 8 years.  4th we will be working long side existing churches to strengthen and give them what they need to reach the lost more effectively in their area.  Pastors in Germany have been praying for God to 'remember' them and send missionaries from America to help them.  Mike and I can't wait to get back there and get busy 'doing the work of our Father'.

Now you know 'why Germany': "If we see the need and have the means but do nothing. We do not have the love of God in our hearts" 1John 3:17.  We understand that not everyone can leave a job, up-root their entire family and go to the mission field.  Not everyone is called for that kind of work.  BUT we are ALL called to do our part.  Some go, some give, some pray.  We are asking you to pray about your part in helping us reach Germany with the love of Jesus.  There are many more statics I can give if you need any more convincing.  Just ask!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

Missions schools out so now what?

So a few weeks have past since we have been back in the States.  The first question I get asked is 'how does it feel to be back?' and 'did you miss everything here?'  How do I answer these?  Let's see, it feels normal to be back...I guess 3 months away doesn't allow for to many things to change!  Second question...well I missed people but I can't say I really missed life here.  I guess I have come home with a heart divided.  I love my family, friends and the things of familiarity that the States offer.  BUT I almost have to say that Germany now holds my heart.  I dreadfully miss everything about there (ok well not understanding the language sucked but other then that :)

We stepped off the plane and that was the last step we took, the rest of the time we have been running! Our first Sunday back found us sharing our hearts with a church in up-state NY.  Then we stayed in Watertown for a week, much thanks to my sister and bro-in-law for providing a great place to call home whenever we are up in the area!!  We got to go to my dad's awesome Pig Roast for Labor day.  It was nice because I got to see a lot of family and friends all at one time!

The next weekend we went to NYC for 2 services.  Friday night and a Sunday service.  Saturday we took the boys to the MET (Metropolitan Museum of Art). WOW!!! What an amazing place to see.  If ever you find yourself in NYC and want to step into another world head over to the MET.  Sunday service was so much fun.  It was a church packed full of beautiful colorful Island people.  Talk about worship they filled the place with glorious praise!  We loved every minute of it.

Our second week we stayed at my GF Teri's house in Rochester.  She was great to let a family of 4 crash her schedule. (love that girl).  Our 3rd weekend found us in PA.  We really enjoyed ourselves and were spoiled rotten.  We got taken out Saturday night to a steakhouse then Sunday after church to the best Chinese buffet I have ever had...and yes, I am quite a connoisseur of Chinese buffets!!

Returning from PA we moved more permanently with our friend Tim in Avon.  He lives alone and has a huge double wide to share with us.  We pretty much live at one end with 2 bedrooms and a full bathroom and he at the other with a master bed/bath.  In between is a large living room, dining room and kitchen/dinette area.  He is awesome and very easy to live with.  God sure knows how to take care of His own ;)

Sunday number 4 found us at our home church, Henrietta Vineyard.  We enjoyed being with our church family for the day.  They are the best!

During the week we home school the boys (ummmm yeah this topic needs a blog ALL it's own) more on that later.  We are also making TONS of calls to every person we find to call and ask if we can share our hearts with them for Germany.  We have called everyone we know and now we are making a lot of cold calls...ok...ok...I better stop saying WE because when Mike reads this he is going to say "WE" what "WE"???  Mike is making all the calls :)  During the week also finds us at lunch/coffee/dinner dates with these pastors called to try to build a relationship with them.  Please continue to pray for God's favor with all we reach out to.  We need everyone to do their part to help us get back to Germany asap!

We have reconnected with many old friends and enjoy nights out with them.  We both have a calendar going and nightly cross reference them to be sure not to double book things....ummm yeah...learned this the hard way...oops!

Life is crazy busy right now BUT I have to say (as I always feel when smack dab in the middle of God's will) I feel the MOST complete, yeah the battle rages on around us but there is such a peace that only comes by walking hand in hand with Him. (wow talk about a run-on sentence...hey don't be jealous of lucky me re-learning the English language in homeschooling...blah)

So I leave you with this;  Now glory be to God! By His mighty power at work within us, He is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope. Eph. 3:20 
I love this!!  He wants to accomplish INFINITELY more then we would ever dare to ask or hope and guess what??  It is not with our own power BUT His MIGHTY power at work within us!!!

Sunday, August 11, 2013

A summer to remember

We are counting down to our return to the states...less then 2 weeks of school and then a few days in Dresden to unwind then we fly.  It has been an amazing summer but we are also excited to get back and get busy!!  We have to figure out living arrangements, homeschooling and raising the rest of our support...just to name a few :)  We are enjoying every last mintue with the students and just being in Germany.

This past week was the last "normal" week for us here at the school.  We finished up different discusions and had the last of our lectures.  Friday night I helped cordinate a '50/60's rock party for our chef's birthday.  It was great.  Everyone dressed up like rockers and we had a lot of fun songs from that time period to dance to like 'Rock around the clock'.  It was so much fun. (a few pictures on FB from that night)

This new week will find us in Dresden doing outreach.  The beginning of the week will be preparation for a large festival that is held there every year.  The festival runs about 4 days and we plan to be there all of them.  We will have a large tent set up and many things going on to reach out to people.  We also will be walking all around the area striking up conversations with Germans.

I can't believe time is winding down.  It has been a summer I will never forget to be sure! How blessed I feel to have spent a summer overseas with my family.  God is so gracious to us!  The places He will take You if you are just willing to say 'yes Lord, here am I send me'!

I use to dream of hopping on an airplane and going somewhere/anywhere growing up.  I would look at planes flying by and tell myself 'someday I am going to be on those ALL the time'.  Little did I know that those dreams would become a reality as I stepped into ministry work.  The first trip I took was in 8th grade to Mexico.  I would not fly again till after marriage.  Then short-term missions work became the norm for us for about 5 years.  Kids happened and small missions trips state-side would have to do.

Last summer found me taking the longest trip by plane so far.  It was my first time to fly to Europe.   I was so excited I can't begin to explain to you the emotions involved as I climbed the plane stairs knowing that the longing as a little girl was going to be fulfilled!  So you can only imagine the pure joy I experienced when we again boarded the plane this summer.  Not only did I have my family with me but we were spending the entire summer doing what we love most.  I know this is just the beginning of a life time of travel and I can't wait to see where the journey takes us!

So many new doors have opened to us this summer.  We have been reaching out to many different pastors and leaders all around Germany and Europe.  I love how God gets you into the position He needs you to be in so He can bring the connections into your life.  We have seen this happen time and time again in our lives.  We knew that we were to be here in Germany before we came so it has been exciting to see all the different doors opening up to us.

We have such a longing to get back here as soon as we can and begin the work that has been birthed in our hearts.  We ask that you help us anyway possible.  Please know that no gift is to small.  We need everyone doing their part, together we can reach this lost and dying generations with the love of Jesus.

Sunday, August 4, 2013


We just returned home from a week in Berlin.  We left Monday morning and stayed till Sunday.  The first 3 days was spent at a YWAM base in the heart of the city.  We hit the streets every night for outreach.  Berlin never sleeps so we were never at a loss of people to talk and pray with.  Tuesday a few of us went to help with a kids camp (I would call it VBS) It was fun.  We did a workshop and then during the picnic we face painted.  Joel got a mustache and beard (pictures on FB) so of course there was then a line of little boys who wanted the same look.  It was cute :)

Thursday-Sunday found us at a YWAM camp for older teenagers.  It was a tent camp but God had mercy on our "old" bones and our family was able to stay in a flat of a very nice German man.  He lived in a very pretty part of Berlin.  It was near the canal and had a lot of fun places to see and a great ice cream shop where you could sit outside and enjoy watching life.  The flat was at the very top of a high rise and had a balcony with an amazing view.  The second night at the flat we got to sit as a family and watch the sun set (pic on FB).  Another night the sun was shining and it started to rain.  We created a lot of fond memories this week in that part of Berlin...ok...yes we did outreach there too!!! We helped with the camp and also went to do outreach everyday into different parts of Berlin.

I was proud of our group of students that went with us.  Saturday they put on different workshops for the campers.  They came up with some very creative shops.  There was learning how to write songs, taking an idea and how to execute the drawing of it, taking junk and turning it into art, fire sticks, a drum circle, a really cool one of taking clothes and adding things to them to make them look fun and artsy and a few other ones.

I found a quote that caught my attention this week.

"She took the leap and build her wings on the way down" Kobi Yamada

This completely captures my summer...actually it captures the moment we signed our house to the market.  That day we/I took the leap.  I would described it as sky diving from an airplane.  Excited, I am soaring in the sky feeling the wind in my hair.  Looking around at the beautiful sights, taking it all in.  Is there anything more amazing then seeing the world through the eyes of a bird?

I hit the point (here in Germany) that I have to pull the parachute cord...WAIT...where is it?  I could have sworn I had put a parachute on before the plane took off...what happened?  How could I not have been better prepared for this jump?  Who will catch me before I hit the ground?  How will I be saved from this free-fall?  Sheer PANIC sets in...I can't think straight...there is no way out...I am falling...BUT then somewhere in the fear a peace begins to spread.  Small-fragile a single bud.  But slowly the bud begins to open and take root.  From deep inside I know who will catch me.  I know I will not fall nor will I hit the ground.

Instead...I WILL FLY!

I will fly with wings crafted by my creator God.  Designed by my purpose in life. Wings that will hold up to the storms that come my way. Wings made strong as I continue to fulfill all that I am to be.  All that God had planned for me when He formed me and breathed life into me.  Wings that will not let me falter nor fall.  I am free from the bondage of pass regrets, of failures, of chains that have held me grounded for far to long.

I spread my wings and fly with purpose.  Knowing I am Free!

Sunday, July 28, 2013

I am His and He is mine!

So I didn't get to write a blog last weekend...we made friends (at this point you say 'of course you did') with a German couple and spent Sunday-my internet time-with them.  It was a lot of fun!  We ate cake in their garden then we had some good pizza and a night of sharing our hearts. We spent the next day with them too.  They took us to see an awesome stone Fortress (pictures on FB).  They have adopted Joel and he goes swimming most days with their son.  Joel loves it!!  Actually I think most of the guys here at the school have adopted Joel.   He has so many big brothers to hang with.  He is in his glory!  It is nice for me to not worry about him.  He is playing pool with someone or Monopoly or a Polish board game or....he is always hanging out with someone and having a good time.  Ethan has really taken to reading this summer.  It is so nice to see his love of books taking off!

We have made quite a few German friends.  Last night we had a cook-out with a few more couples.  It was nice to sit around and laugh with them.  We are more German then we know in fact we were told that by an American lady the other will take it as a compliment!!

Week 5 and 6 blend together.  We have fallen into a comfortable schedule.  Tomorrow we leave for Berlin for a week.  It is outreach week and we have students going all over the place to minister. Spain, Lebanon, Turkey, Poland, Czech Republic and here in Germany to name a few.  We will be helping YWAM put on a camp for the week.  We will lead workshops and hit the streets of Berlin to witness.  It is going to be a great time of applying what we have learned here to real life.  There are so many logistics to planning something like this so pray everything goes well for our group of 23.

I went to the Dresden Outreach last Saturday.  It was really amazing to see it.  Mike had gone the previous weeks.  We had everything set up under a huge tree in the middle of the park.  Many people come to hang out at the park on Saturdays.  We had some notecards where they could write down life things, for example I wish I knew....I would tell my younger self...ect.  It has been a great way to see into the lives of those we are trying to outreach.  We call it 'leave a message' tree and the cards get hung by string from the tree.  We also have a Brazilian giving free haircuts which brings people over.  We had tea and water to give out.  There is a drama team that performs and many other things going on.  We had a huge Samba circle that was amazing.  It was so fun to see and be apart of.  The Samba circle is where everyone gathers to play different kinds of drums.  There is one leader and he sets the rhythm for everyone else.  That really drew people over.  We had all kinds of people playing and dancing.  We were then able to share the gospel after we were done playing.  We are seeing many lives touched from this outreach.

We are excited to see some new doors opening up to us.  Doors we wouldn't have ever knocked on if we had not come to Germany.  I love looking back and seeing God's hand so faithfully direct our lives.  He is such a clever father.  He leads us into position where we can best fulfill his will for our lives.

My song/prayer for the last 2 weeks has been

Oceans (Where Feet May Fail) Hillsong

You call me out upon the water the great unknown
where feet may fail and there I find You in the mystery.
In oceans deep my faith will stand
and I will call upon Your name.
I keep my eyes above the waves.
When oceans rise my Soul will rest in Your embrace
for I am Yours and You are mine.
Your grace abounds in deepest waters.
Your sovereign hand will be my guide.
Where feet may fail and fear surround me.
You've never failed and You won't start now.
Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders.
Let me walk upon the waters wherever you would call me.
Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander and
my faith will be made stronger in the presence of my Savior.

I have held onto this song these last two weeks.  As I wrote in my last post God asked me if I trusted Him...I 'got back to Him' and told Him YES.  It was not an easy yes..even though I know He has never failed me...ever!!!! As soon as I told Him yes doors begin to open up fast and things are moving forward in our lives.

Keep us in your prayers we only have a few weeks left then we will be back in the states to finish raising support and working out details for our future.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

A little bit of'll see as you read!

Not feeling so well tonight so I am not sure how this Blog will turn out! I woke up this morning with a "dry" throat and it has progressed from there to a very sore, every time I swallow throat and I think a fever :(  I of course got prayed for so I am believing it be broken and I wake up refreshed and ready to go...especially since tomorrow is our 19th Wedding Anniversary!

I can't believe I am writing that big of a number..19..I have now officially lived longer with my hubby then I have with my parents!! I married at 18. It is just a crazy thought...I get those quite often :)

19 years...I really didn't intend to write a blog about those years but I guess that is where my thoughts are taking me tonight.  I love being married I was never one of those girls that was empowered to be 'on her own'.  I found a best friend and never wanted to leave his side.  I love that we complete each other. I am empowered because I am a part of him.  He has never asked me to walk behind him.  I have always been firmly at his side.  He has promoted me in so many ways it would take many blogs to tell.  Mike has never asked me to be less then everything God has called me to be.  I can run with purpose and destiny knowing I have a safe place to land! Ok ok enough of that...I know you all want to hear about 'more important things'

So we are ending week 4. It has been a good week.  We went to Dresden on our day off with a bunch of friends.  We went without any purpose so we could just wander around and enjoy everything.  We did find a really pretty church to go into.  Later I was walking down a certain street that we have been outreaching on Saturdays. (This has been my first time on the street because Mike has been going) The street is full of skate shops, graffiti, bars and many lost souls!  I had a profound moment when I turned around and saw the beautiful church we had been in earlier way off in the distance. It was perfectly dead center.  The song that came to mind is a very old one and the chourse goes +I want to run a rescue mission a yard from the gate of Hell, and with everyone I meet take them the gospel and share it well, look around you as you hesitate another solider just fell...let's run to the battle+  Here was this loss street in the shadows of this beautiful church.  The church was so far removed from it's 'purpose'.  I think so many churches have lost their way it is heart-wrenching.

I started Hip Hop and Insanity this week.  Ok a few things about that...I am WHITE so I do not Hip nor do I hop...I have kinda given up on that.  However Insanity is more up my ally. Hard work yes but boy do you sweat and it feels good!!

The rest of the week played out like they have been.  We had fun at our small group on Friday night.  We break up into small groups guys and girls and then same language grouping.  So of course I am in the English anyways we decided to do very girly stuff this week~~ eat chocolate cake and paint our nails~~ We did pray for those that needed it and then a few got picked to have everyone say something nice about us.  I was overwhelmed by all the sweet things said by the other girls about me.  I have touched their hearts as they have touched mine.

Saturday found us in Poland! We went to the Slot Festival there.  It was set in the court yard of a very old castle.  There were things going on inside the castle and all around the yard.  It was cool to be there.  It is a Christian festival put on for the unbelievers.  It has been very successful and seen many saved throughout the years.

It is such a fun living environment here.  I never knew I would like living this way.  I love that at any point in time you can join a lively game of ball out in the court yard or learn how to spin fire sticks.  You can wander inside and join a group learning each others language or sit down beside someone playing guitar and join them in song.  As I mentioned before there is never an end to praying for someone or asking for prayer.  There are dance parties that just break out for no reason.  There is laughter ringing all around you.  Joel has little friends he can be free to run and play with.  Ethan can join in or have some alone time in his room.  There is always someone to talk with, always someone to lean on, someone to share your heart with.  I think it is a very small picture of what Heaven will look like!

I leave you with what I have been dealing with this week.  God asked me earlier in the week if I trusted Him about a very huge thing in my life.  It was a very clear question...I had to be honest with Him and say "I will get back to you on that"...I love that you can be honest with God :) Throughout the week I have been drawn to Ezekiel 47.  Where Ezekiel is taken to the temple and there is water flowing out of it. The man keeps taking him to deeper waters.  First his ankles, then knee deep, waist then it was over his head.  On the way back Ezekiel saw a great number of trees that had not been there before. It was fresh water and would heal and make whole all it touched.  There would be fruit trees whose leaves will not wither nor their fruit fail.  I just thought and of course I am applying this to my life so it has my twist on it...that as I am obedient to step out into the waters that flow from God and take the risk of going deeper I will see fruit and fulfil the call of God for my life.  Nothing will be able to hinder that!

love and miss you all!!!

Sunday, July 7, 2013

Return home the same?? NEVER!!!!

Week 3 down!
We made it to Berlin and stayed in a Hostel which wasn't all that bad. It had 2 sets of bunk beds. The boys slept on the tops and Mike and I on the bottoms.  We had our own bathroom which was nice to not have to share with anyone else.  There was basic bedding but no towels to use.  The other married couple that went with us had a couple from Ireland in the room with them.  It is a neat concept and a great way to meet other people from all around the world.  It was a neat experience to add to our ever growing list!

Berlin is a rather large city with lots to see and do.  There is NO way you can see everything in a day or even would take many days to tour around it.  We hit the spots we could walk to.  We saw the Gold Angel and tried to see the bombed out church but it was under construction. We found a cool lego store and the boys got to make 3 lego people each for about $5, which is really cheap. They got to pick the hat or hair, face, body, legs and something for the people to hold.  It was a lot of fun for them and they were quite creative.  Joel made a 'ginger' lumberjack which he was quite proud of.  Ethan made a short boss man and his 2 hench people..I say people because one was a girl with sunglasses and a big gun! Of course we went and saw Brandenburg Gate and big pieces of the Berlin wall.  I have pictures posted on FB. We were so tired by the end of the day.  We probably walked 10 miles or more!!  To end the day the guys ate at Burger

Tuesday-Thursday saw us back to our schedule at the school.  Good things happening all around us.  It is exciting to see the students opening up to God and His plans for their lives.  I love at any moment you can look around and see students gathered praying for each other.  You only have to say "I don't feel well" and there is a mini-prayer service held :)  Worship still amazes me.  We do all the songs in English but sometimes when the chorus is simple everyone will sing it in their native tongue.  It is so beautiful to hear...I can only wonder if Heaven will sound like that!

Friday-Seek God day- was really nice this week.   Mike and I took a 2 1/2 hour walk together.  We prayed for 2 hours about everything out loud. We even prayed for all of you!  Then we were quiet for 1/2 hour to allow God to speak to us.  It was such an amazing time and I want to continue to do it when we return to the states.    Life gets away from us and we forget to focus on what really matters...our relationship with Christ and each other :)  There are so many things I am learning here that I don't think I gave much time to in everyday life.

This week my prayer has been
 ~Psalm 139:24~
Search me, O God, and know my heart.
Test me and know my thoughts.
Point out ANYthing in me that offends You.
Lead me along the path of Everlasting life.

The first week we were here one of the speakers asked "How many of you are afraid of going home exactly the same way you came?" My hand shot up.  That is my biggest fear to remain the same as I am.  To not be changed.  To return home no different then how I started this summer.  I don't want to let anymore of my life slip by and not grab hold of all God has for me.  When He formed me, breathed life into me and called me by name He had so many great plans for my life.  He still does!!! I have just let to many things get in the way of those plans.  To many worries and fears. To many times of self reliance.  To many day to day mundane things that draws my affections away from my creator.

I challange you this week to pray that Psalm and really ask the Father to search your heart and point out things in you that offend Him.  It is not pretty I can promise you that but so very rewarding in the end!!!!

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Rid me of Myself, I belong to YOU.

Week 2 has come and gone.  It is amazing how it has only been 2 weeks but it feels as if we have been here 2 months...of course in a good way :)

Good news...they were able to put the boys in their own room right beside ours so that was a happy day for all of us!! The boys have enjoyed the 'freedom' of having a room and of course Mike and I are quite happy to be on our own ;)

On our day off (Monday) we went to Meissen with the boys.  We had such a great time and got to tour one of the oldest castles around called Albrechtsburg. It was so cool to wander through the halls and listen to the stories told about it.  I love historical things like that.  The boys really enjoyed seeing it and took lots of pictures.  I will post those next Sunday.  We ate lunch in the old quarters outside.  This has been one of my favorite things in Germany.  Every restaurant has a great outside area to eat at.  You sit down and a waitress comes over to you.  We all had something different to eat and were quite happy with it.  The views to look at while eating are always the best part!!  We finished the day at a few shops looking at the hand carved wood work.  Many things are hand-carved here and so detailed.  I enjoy looking at it.
 God has really been on the move here at the school.  Remember how I blogged last time that I wanted to have a word for each student here? Well I am seeing that come to pass quicker then I thought it would!! So cool and humbling! There was a group of 7 girls praying with me the other day and I had very vivid pictures to share with each of them about different things that they needed to hear from God. I had to stand in amazement that God would want to use me to reach into lives that need it.  He is such a faithful loving father if we just step out in obedience to what He wants.

Today we leave after the morning worship service to go to Berlin with a few other families for our day off .  We are spending the night in a Hastal. I have never been in one and can't wait to experience it!! We return late Monday night.

Each day is full of getting to know everybody in a greater way.  We have lectures that have been fantastic and a variety of fun things to do.  I have dinner chore.  It is a lot of work.  We have to get things ready for dinner then clean up afterwards and do all the dishes.  There is a kind of dishwasher but the dishes have to be cleaned before they go in. I have a team of 7 and we all work well together.  It took the first week to get them all pulling their own weight but I have 'whipped them into shape' The cook calls me his Right hand I enjoy working with them all.  We are always singing and laughing as we work.  We have 1 more week of this chore then it changes to something else.

I have become an honorary Brazilian...they all think I am one because I look so much like them...which with a Portuguese grandfather I could pass as one! It is funny because they will forget and start talking to me in Portuguese...I am trying to learn a few words! My nickname has become Dani (danny) because that is what they would call me in Brazil.

This week a song we all sing and I am sure take for granted has really been birthed fresh in my heart.  It is...Lead me to the cross where your love poured down. Bring me to my knees, Lord I lay me down. RID me of myself, I belong to You. Lord lead me, lead me to the cross.  That is my hearts cry this summer.  I want to be RID of MYSELF and allow God to fully move as never before in and through me!!  I want to shine forth with His Glory and not get in the way.  We are so unwilling and I think afraid to fully give Him control of our lives.  We think to much and stop what He wants to do with us.  If we would understand that He has so many amazing things for us and is such a loving Father we would rise up and do incredible things for Him.

Sunday, June 23, 2013 has only been a week?

   We have been at the missions school for little over a week and what a week it has been.  We arrived and were told that they thought the boys were much older and would want to room with the "big" boys....all who are over the age of 21.  Knowing my boys I figured that would not go over to well ;) So the 4 of us are camping in 1 room! At first I was wondering how I would possibly pull it off...I have a slight OCD (or CDO:) issue! But as I began to put things away in the room God showed me how it was as if each thing in the room had been placed there for us.  First there was this magnificent wardrobe that had enough shelves in it for me to place all our clothes on! Next there was a heater in the room not being used that I could spread out things on. I placed the suitcases behind the door and used them to set things on. Every bag I brought has been given a function. I have truly made our little room a home for the next 3 months. (see pictures below)

  I can't begin to describe how beautiful Germany is.  Even hanging out the clothes to dry on the line (there are not dryers here..well there are but I guess very expensive to own) I have an amazing view to look at.  Long walks are a must for me and I can't get enough of the things I see.  We are set in a small town that looks as if it has climbed off the pages of a fairy tale book.  Each home is very unique and interesting to look at.  Many have green vines crawling up the sides of them.  There are artsy flairs to even their clothes lines!  A lot of the homes have a fence around them and inside are flower gardens that have been very well cared for.  The walk I take winds me around the town and out into the fields where there are wind mills and small homes set into the land scape.

  The students have of course been the best part of this experience by far.  So many different nationality so many stories.  I will try to write about a student or 2 every time I can get on (which is just Sundays).  Today I pick to write about Min (Me) He is such a sweet Brazilian boy.  He has gravitated towards us from the first day.  The 2nd night we were here he told Mike he likes to watch how Mike interacts with his sons.  He says it is such a good relationship they have together.  My heart went out to him.  We asked him if he knew his dad and it sounds like there is not much of a relationship there.

  I have a heart for many of the students here.  God has already used me to give a prophetic word to a young girl, Volga, from Poland. She just wept and wept.  Later she thanked me and said that the words I gave her God had been speaking them to her and even that morning He had said some of the exact phases I used :)

 I believe Mike and I are here for a number of reasons. The first of course being to seek His face and will for our lives as a family.  To get to know Him even deeper then we ever have.  But I think we are also here for the students. To impact their lives as a "big brother/big sister" would. I have been praying God would give me a word for each student here and to know when I am to give it to them.  I know they will touch our lives as much as we touch theirs.

  Each day we get up and have breakfast in a family style setting at long tables.  Then we meet for worship and instruction.  We have teachings most of the morning till lunch.  Then again we eat together.  Then depending on the day is how we fill our afternoons.  Dinner, worship and different events to fill the night.  This schedule runs Tuesday-Thursday.  Friday we get up and eat together breakfast but then the rest of the day is seeking God day.  This is where we are to truly seek His face.  This means finding a quiet spot for most of the day. Then we come together for dinner.  Saturday was our first outreach into Dresden.  I didn't go this time Mike went.  We will take turns so someone can stay with the boys.   He really enjoyed it and was able to talk to different Germans he met.  Sunday we had worship and a great message about feeding the important things in our lives.  Now everyone is eating lunch but I am choosing to write to you all!  Monday will be our day off.  We plan to go as a family into Missen to look around.  Every Monday we will chose a different area to have an adventure in.

  We got to see No Longer Music in concert the other night.  It was great!! It was awesome to see them live and not just watch little bits and pieces on the internet.  I was amazed at the the simple message of the Cross that they bring.  I think we as believers complicate Christ so much.  God loves you, He sent His only Son to take your place on death row. Jesus defeated the devil that day and now You can become a child of God simply by asking. How come that message gets so bogged down in our American churches?

Sunday, June 16, 2013

"Welcome Home"

So we made it to the school Saturday afternoon and we were greeted with a huge hug and a "welcome home" from our missionary friend that Mike and I stayed with last summer while we were visiting both of the Steiger sites here in Germany.  Those 2 words dug deep and took root in my heart, I felt such peace and excitement of all God has in store for my family and I.

Today was our first worship service together. We sang one song then David Pierce the founder of Steiger spoke.  How cool it was to hear him speak in person. Such a humble but powerfully annointed man, down to earth and in love with Jesus.  After he spoke about worship and dancing in God's presence that breaks the chains we sang a few more songs.  The freedom and joy in the room was so amazing.  I stood there with tears in my eyes listening to over 100 young people from all over the globe lifting up the name of Jesus.  Then we all prayed over a missionary working in Beirut, Lebanon with Steiger, it was so cool to hear all the different languages!

Tonight we have a 'party' planned with some exciting things to watch...can't wait to see what is planned.

I can't begin to express how excited we are to be here.  Thank you to so many of you that have pitched into make this possible for my family and I.

Thursday, June 13, 2013


Made it to Dresden to spend a few days before entering our summer 'work'.  We are excited, tired and just happy to be back in Germany.  Feels like "home". I love everything about Germany and the rich culture it offers.

We have been on such an incredible journey since we decided to follow the path God placed us on.  The stories I could tell!! Little by little I will tell them here. Just wanted to get a hello world I am a blogger post up :)

More to come......I hope providing I have internet service once we are at Steiger!