spotting changes

I went hiking on Sunday with Michelle Ramsey, a good friend who used to be in my high school small group. My legs are just now getting back to normal. We had a good muscle workout up and down Eagle’s Peak located on the Air Force Academy base. I couldn’t get enough of enjoying this beautiful world we live in. I love how the changes in the leaves during autumn causes you to notice more beauty. I wouldn’t have noticed those specific patches of trees if it weren’t for their golden leaves against the mass of green.

There have been a lot of changes since last September. It’s hard to believe, but this time last year I boarded a plane and headed to Austria to begin five months of being challenged, stretched and refined in discipleship training school. It was only through those changes that I saw myself in a different light and things stuck out to me against the backdrop of “what used to be.” That first jump has led me to a completely different day-to-day life, goals and vision for the next year.

Instead of teen girl conferences and high school small groups, I am traveling the U.S. and telling you about my heart for Austrian youth and dream to create a teen magazine or Web site there. Instead of wearing pantyhose and driving in my lil’ white Chevy to Focus, I am going a little more casual and taking the bus. Instead of thinking about my next Brio mission trip, I am thinking about a long-term commitment to missions and what it will be like to live more than five months in a foreign country.

Life looks different. But through the changes God is popping up everywhere and revealing Himself to me. I love Isaiah 43:19, “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.”

turned inside-out

God is doing a new thing, even in my heart. What He’s revealing isn’t new, but His work is always fresh.

Have you ever seen that commercial where they ask the woman to go change her shirt and wear it inside out? It’s to see whether or not her deodorant rubbed off on the inside. Well, I feel as if God has taken me and turned me inside-out, like a T-shirt. And has asked me to look down and see what’s really going on inside.

I have to say it’s not pretty. Do you ever worry about what people think? Or struggle with giving in to the lies about God, yourself and even those around you? These are a few of my mind struggles. I see them quite clearly. More clearly than I have before. I want to face these weaknesses instead of sitting in them and feeling sorry for myself. I want to be that moldable and cracked jar of clay with the God’s glory shining through (thanks M!).

It feels like I’m sharing the same issues and struggles. But I must have faith that the work He began will continue until completion. He’s gently stripping a layer of me at a time, although this feels like more than a layer. *smile* I’m glad He’s willing to take the time and patience to bring me closer to actually living in the freedom He already made possible.

lunch, dinner and swim hair
I had a great time, usually eating, with those of you I got to see in Louisville, southern Indiana, Chicagoland and even Michigan. My next trip is October 16 until October 26. There is a lot of driving involved, so I’d appreciate your prayers. For those of you in TN, NC, SC and even OK and Texas, you might be receiving a letter and call from me soon to see if you’re available to meet (and eat!). Here are some pics from that trip:

Eileen (a friend’s daughter) loves her bagels from Panera!

I always enjoy great conversation and many laughs with Dave and Jan.

And how I couldn’t leave out that I got to be with Kaleb on his second birthday. Here’s what he looks like after swimming in the pool.

support update
I am probably at $400 of monthly support. Thank you for your generosity, for those who are already on board. Pray that God will multiply my time and efforts. I’m stretched pretty thin this fall with a lot on my plate. Thanks for your patience in communication. Pray that God will continue to raise up a team of monthly financial supporters. Pray that I’ll be on my knees seeking dependence on Him. Thank you all for your support, prayers, encouragement and journeying with me.

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