I’m back! Maybe…

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Hello world!

 

I”ve been thinking about blogging again. Not so much for your benefit as for mine. :-P I’ve been reading a lot of really great and challenging things lately, especially from Jamie and Rachel Held Evans and I need a space to process and think. That’s been hard lately with a toddler running around. Yes, that’s right, the Punk is officially 18 months old. Time is flying.

 

Anyway, let’s see what happens.

Note to Electronic (EFT) Donors

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As you know, my time with Pioneers and the Edge is coming to a close. My official last day is August 31st. However, since my support account is in deficit Pioneers has decided to leave my account open through the end of the year (December 31st) if necessary. I have been asked to make sure you know, as an EFT donor, that should you decide to continue supporting after August, that your support is going toward my deficit since I will no longer be in active service with Pioneers. It would be a great encouragement to Brian and I if you were able to see us through the end of the deficit, but totally understand if you feel like you cannot continue.

If you decide you’d like to cancel your EFT before the end of the deficit, you will need to contact the Finance department at Pioneers at 407-382-6000 or finance@orlandoteam.com. If you decide to stay on, you do not have do anything. All EFT gifts will be cancelled when the deficit is gone (which will be no later than January 1st).

Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.

You’ve been a steadfast pillar of support. Thank you for being a faithful supporter.

Grace and peace,

~Mary

Too Many Questions…

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I’ve found myself in a particularly weird place lately. I have been able to experience many, usually conflicting feelings, all at the same time. Excitement, fear, anticipation, grief, joy, and worry. Along with that comes the ability to see God working in amazing ways in some areas and then others, well, leaves me shaking my fist toward the sky asking “Why?”

Sometimes I wonder what a counselor or psychologist would think of my trust “issues.” God, friends, family, even myself: none are immune from my suspicions and accusations of failure.

So, I’m left in a constant place of “Now what?” Am I going to stay in this funk, this peculiar place of questions and waning? I’m not a glutton for punishment so I want out. I always assume the way out is this perfectly planned path. I assume because I try so hard to be ordered and well thought out that things should go well for me; not just well, but awesome. And somehow, that’s not the case.

And that all leads to feeling guilty about it all. How dare I feel dissatisfied with how things are going. Other people have it way harder than me and I have so much to be grateful for. So where does the dissatisfaction come from?

Does it go back to trust? If I trusted that it was God who planned out this moment would it make things better? I know, I trust, that God sees everything; that he knows what’s going on.

So if I know that, I mean really, truly, deeply know that, what does that mean? Where does that leave me?

It leaves me selfishly shaking my fists at the sky wondering why things aren’t going my way. I need to stop being so selfish.

The Call Goes Out…

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Story’10 is a missions conference from Pioneers which invites you to be a part of God’s story among the unreached peoples of the world.  You’ll hear first-hand accounts of how God is moving in the world from missionaries fresh off the field from areas like Thailand, Central Asia, Indonesia, Europe, South America, Africa and more!  There’s even a track specifically for kids!  For more information check out pioneers.org/story!

Full Circle

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Four years ago, while I was in India, children followed us everywhere in the villages. The guys on my team had a good grasp on what the boys wanted to do: play. The other girl on my team and I spent a lot of time with the young girls. They couldn’t understand us, and we couldn’t understand them, but none of us cared. One day, we got buckets of water and shampoo and washed these girls’ hair. For some of them, it seemed like it must have been the first time, but they liked it. We brushed and combed their hair too and nothing will get those smiles out of my mind.

This year I have been a part of planning for summer Edge teams to go out. We sent another Edge team (pic below) to the same villages.  They worked with the same kids, four years later. The girls on the team played with these same  young girls again. But something happened. Two of the little girls gave their lives to Christ. Four years ago my teammates and I planted seeds in tough terrain. And four years later, a group came by to harvest.

How awesome is God? He is moving in India, and we were a part of it! It’s not easy or quick or glamorous, but He is worth everything!

Please pray for these two new believers in Christ. That He would continue to grow their faith. And also for these other children that follow in the villages, that everything they hear would be a seed planted, and in God’s perfect timing would produce glorious fruit!

ETC Training Day 1

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Today was day one of two of our Edge Team Coordinator training. Our goals for our ETCs for this training time are:

  • To grow in their spiritual and character formation, discerning what it means to lead by dependence on the Holy Spirit.
  • To develop specific leadership skills in participatory servant leadership as they facilitate small groups, address tensions and conflict on their teams, and develop others on their team by empowering them to lead in their areas of gifting.
  • To begin forming a ministry philosophy that will help them finish well as a leader.

Tonight’s talk was on servant leadership. Tomorrow we’ll have sessions on conflict resolution and healthy teams, leading a bible study, logistical responsibilities, and their roles at orientation.

Please be praying for these leaders as they come into this summer. Some have just finished hard semesters at school and others have stepped away from busy jobs to pursue missions. Please pray that the staff would be an encouragement to these leaders and the other Edgers as they arrive.