This is a site where I can express my thoughts, feelings, passions as well as share my life with whoever chooses to listen.
Thank you so much for all of your support! Please please continue to pray! The power of prayer is so vital!
So my teammate and roommate Brooke and I, after living together for maybe a hour, discovered that we both love to sing. We were constantly finding songs we both know and singing them together finding different harmonies or just changing the song up all together and singing it. We both love hymns so normally about once a day we are singing a hymn together or separately. Most of the time we are just in our own little worlds sing about the God that we love and cherish. Well… Apparently the students that are our roommates began to notice us singing all the time. My roommate M came up to me the other day once we were already at school and asked “Can you teach me the song you were singing this morning?” I looked at her surprised… “was I singing a song this morning?” I didn’t really know what she was talking about. I mean I am constantly humming something, but I normally do it without thinking, so when she asked me to teach her the song… I honestly didn’t even know what song she was talking about. I turned to Brooke and she didn’t know either. M went on to say “you were singing it this morning and you and Brooke were singing it last night.” Brooke and I looked completely confused. I really had no clue what she was talking about, but then she tried to sing it and I could tell in her broken English that she was singing Amazing Grace. Brooke and I were like “OHHHH! You want to learn how to sing Amazing Grace?” M looks at us and goes “Yes yes! Please teach me!” We just looked at each other and smiled. I’m thinking of course I will teach you how to sing Amazing Grace!!! Praying that I would be able to tell her what those words really meant! During the Lunch break we went into the chapel and started to teach her the lyrics of the Amazing Grace. We wrote them all down for her in English and slowly sang verse by verse over and over again until she was singing it with us confidently. It took her about 45 minutes to really learn the song and be able to sing it on her own. M has such a beautiful voice. I only know a little about her story and her journey into South Korea, but I know enough to know that her singing this song and being able to fully understand what she is singing is a powerful powerful thing! At the end of each verse I would ask her if she knew what that verse was saying and what it meant. At first she was slow to respond, but then she just started talking like she couldn’t contain her words. To hear her explain to me that her favorite part of the song was the third verse about how the Lord has promised good to her and how he will be her shield if only she believes in him. Her explaining all of that took about 20 minutes, but the minute I understood what she was saying, I started to cry. How beautiful is this wonderful woman who has been through a crazy painful journey and in the midst of everything she is putting her faith in a God that promises good for her and a God who will be her shield. Even now, it’s been about a week since this conversation, I still here her humming Amazing Grace as she is reading or doing her homework in the Apartment. Most of the time I get a huge smile when I hear her but then there are those couple moments when tears start to pour because I know that I have a sister in Christ who’s faith is growing and who really trusts her Savior in all things.
Today i’m going to do something a little different. We have prayer time everyday at a certain time. Normally I go to the park or a coffee shop and just sit and journal, but for some reason I know that my prayers today are going to be big and I need other to intercede on my behalf and pray for me as well.
Jesus, you are so beautiful and so big. I love you. I’m so thankful for you and everything you have done in my life. Being here in South Korea, I see you mercies everywhere. I hear your voice in every word spoken to me and the students here. I see you in their lives and I can feel how much you are moving inside of them. They are walking miracles that testify to your gospel and to your grace. Coming here I knew that you would change and move my heart, but I never expected to love the students this much. I never expected to be so broken for their lives and for their salvation. This just shows me how much i try to put you in a box. Lord forgive me for all my arrogance and pride. I was trying to figure out exactly what you were going to do this summer and I absolutely failed becuase you surpassed every possible expectation I had. You went much further than I could ever imagine and I am so incredibly thankful. I lift up the students here to you. God they have been though so much but you have already done some much for them and a lot of them don’t even realize how much you love them. You have brought them out of the darkness of their home country and truly set them free form the bondage that a they encountered while they lived there. I see the joy that is in their eyes because they are physically free, but when I look closer i come to tears because I see that they are still in chains spirituality. I pray for their souls. That they would grow to know you and that they would open their hearts to receive your grace and your healing. God most of them still have families that were not able to escape and are still facing horror and suffering. Jesus in your powerful name I pray for those family members that you would provide a safe passage our of their home countries and into safety. If this is not in you will then I pray that they will come to know you. I don’t know if that is possible or able to happen but God if they know you then at least at the end of everything we can take comfort in know ting that they knew of your love and had salvation in your name. Jesus I lift up my roommate G to you, that you would comfort her and be with her. God she knows you and she loves you so much. Every night I hear and see her praying to you on her knees crying for her family and her home country. Jesus I pray that you would work another miracle in her life and return her family safely to her. God I see the joy she has in your. She has such a childlike joy and faith in you it makes my heart hurt. But she is still human and she still feels pain and hurt. God restore her heart and her families heart. Bring them back together God. Let them be reunited in your name and on this earth. Jesus I feel like I’ve been putting this off because I was once again putting you in a box and putting limits on your powers. Jesus i know that you can work a miracles and bring this family back together. God I pray for TH and YH. They are students here and they love you so much. Both of them are so close to accepting your love. These guys could have a huge impact in this school and I pray that you would continue to pursue them in a mighty mighty way. God that they would see you and want to know you so badly. I pray that they would accept your salvation and spread that news to the entire school God! I know that these guys have the power to really move mountains in this school and bring so much glory to your kingdom. Think of how many people would come to know the Lord if TH and YH were to tell the other students of your love. YH has so much pain in is past and in his heart. His father killed and his mother sick, both of them still in his home country. Jesus his pain is so large and I can see it whenever I look into his eyes. I can see it when I find him alone in the park crying. God show him your love. Let him have ears to hear the people around him that are tell him about your love. Let his heart open to you. You can give him ultimate healing and show him that you are sovereign and you do love him so so much. You can give him a peace about his family, a peace that I know that he longs for so badly. There’s a song that I’ve been listening to a lot lately and I feel that they lyrics are so so true for all the students here. ”the lost are saved, find their way, at the sound of your great name. All condemned feel no shame, at the sound of your great name. Every fear has no place at the sound of your great name. The enemy, he has to leave at the sound of your great name. Jesus worth is the lamb that was slain for us. The son of God and Man you are high lifted up and all the world will praise your great name. All the weak find thier strength at the sound of your great name. Hungry souls receive grace at the sound of your great name. The fatherless they find their rest at the sound of your great name. The sick are healed and the dead are raised at the sound of your great names. Jesus worthy is the lamb that was slain for us the son of God and man. You are high and lifted up and all the wold will praise your great name. Your great name. Redeemer, My Healer, Lord Almighty! My Savior, Defender, You are my King! Redeemer, My Healer, Lord Almighty! My Savior, Defender, You are my King! Jesus. The name of Jesus. You are high and lifted up and all the world will praise your great name. Your great name.” Jesus I pray that your great name will cover the student. God that they wouldn’t feel shame. That their fears would have no place to stay. God that their souls would finally find fulfillment in you. God that they would realize that they have a holy heavenly father that loves them more than they could ever imagine. God that their sicknesses and their family members that are sick would be healed in the power of your name. I pray that they would look at your face and know that your are their redeemer, their savior, their defender, their healer, their king. God I pray that the enemy would know that these students are your children and that he can go no where near them! God I pray protection over them that the enemy would flee because they know that this is not his place and that these students are not his. I pray that the students would find their strength in your name! Jesus that they would use that strength to fight the enemy whenever he attacks and that they would use that strength to get to know you in all of your splendor. Jesus you are so beautiful and I love you so much! and God… I LOVE these students. I love am in love with each and every one of them. I pray that you would pursue them and that they would know you. God the greatest desire of my heart is to be able to praise your name in heaven and hear the voices of these students all around me praising you in Korean. God the ones that know you, love you so much and they trust you without any question. It breaks my heart to think that some of the students may not come to know your name. Jesus I know you are sovereign and I know you love your children, and because I know you love them and because you have given me the honor and blessing of getting to know them I love them too without limits. God I will fight for their salvation with everything that I have. I will tell them about you in every word that I speak and every time I hug them I will hug them and love them with your love. Jesus I pray that you would fill me and use me to reach the lost and to reach these students. I will work for you and your kingdom until my feet can’t move and until my mouth can’t speak. Let your presence fill this place and fill these people. Let their hearts hear your voice. God let me speak to their hearts, even if they can’t understand my words. Let me speak with the voice of truth in my heart, mind, and soul. God I know I am here to do your work. Let me work with everything I have and for everything for your glory. God I will not rest until I reach the pearly gates and I can look into your eyes and tell you that I worked as hard as I could to tell them about you and your love. God I pray that when I walk inside those gates that I would see their faces and I can rejoice!! I pray that the angels will play their trumpets today because they have accepted your love. I pray this with everything I am and I pray this in with the power of the holy spirit that lives inside of me. I pray this in the power of your GREAT NAME. With that names comes power. So God Let that power reign over this place and these students. I love you with all my heart, mind, soul, and strength. Let all of this be for your glory and your glory alone.
For the first week, my team and I were basically just spending as much time with the students as possible. However, Koreans are very task focused and they devote the majority of their time to studying. So, last when the teachers told us that we were going to get to go on a field trip with the students we were so excited! Then we found out that this was not just a normal “day out” kind of field trip, but it was a three day trip to the beach. I’m normally not a big fan of the beach, but I was so pumped to see the beaches of Korea and experience those beaches with the students. Also, on the itinerary was some sight seeing at some Korean Caves and Museums!
So we got to the school on Wednesday, ate breakfast, and then left for the beach! It was a four hour drive and my team and I rode on a van while the students rode on a charter bus. So… that meant that I, of course, slept the whole way there! We stopped half way to eat, however i’m pretty sure I was still asleep because I don’t remember at all what we ate. I’m not sick now and my teammate Jessica told me that I ate all of my food… so i’m guessing I liked it!
Our first stop once we arrived to our destination was the Reincarnated Celestial Fairy/Female Angel Cave. We had to take a lift to get up to the caves and just the ride up to the caves has so incredibly beautiful! I could tell that God was going to really bless our time at the beach! Before we went into the caves we were divided up into different teams with some students. I loved this because I was able to really get to know some students that I hadn’t really spent much time with yet. Most of my time goes to the students that are the class I teach or that live with me, so when I was given the opportunity to get to know some other students it was really excited!!! (Pictures will be coming soon!!) Once we were broken up into our teams we headed into the caves. Now, I’ve been in a cave before but NEVER have been in a cave this absolutely incredible! It was breathtaking. Two of the girls in my group really stuck close to me the entire time. One of the girls, S, has incredible English skills! She’s in the Glory class, my class, the highest English level class, and she is so smart! Seriously! She actually enjoys Physics. I mean who really enjoys Physics… S does! The other student’s, P, English is very broken. She arrived in South Korea not that long ago. She is so so full of joy! She was a little scared of the caves and so she was holding on to my hand the entire walk through the caves. And the walk was not short at all. It would have been an incredible experience if I was walking through the cave by myself, but walking through and seeing all the reactions of the students was so much better. S would constantly turn to me and say “how beautiful, so beautiful”. P would ask me “God create?” Her faith has such a childlike quality and I love it so much! P constantly reminds me of how much we are supposed to love and trust the Lord because she does it so effortlessly because for her, he is all she has. At the end of the caves, they had the country of Korea outline and P showed me her hometown and how she moved to Seoul. It was so encouraging to here and listen to her in her broken English tell me and trust me with such personal information.
As we rode back down from the caves, we got to talk more with the students and they showed us some super fun games! Kai Bai Bo (basically rock paper scissors) and other games, that I don’t remember their names… but they all involved hitting/slapping/tapping the other person if you win. Most of the time we don’t hit that hard, especially if it’s all girls playing. But if you get one of the guys playing then prepare yourself for your hand and wrists to be a little red. We played that all the way to the railbikes! Railbikes were basically these things we got to ride all around the coast of the beach and it was crazy beautiful and so much fun! Your controlled the speed of your bike so you could go as fast or as slow as you wanted. Also, you could rear end the person in front of you… and that was the best!!!
After the railbikes we finally went to our hotel! It was right off the beach.. Jackpot! We got settled in our rooms, which all 9 girls on my team were all in one room, and then we went down for dinner. What’s for dinner… KOREAN BAR-B-QUE!!!! Ok people… this stuff is so good!! And pretty much all of Korean meals are family style… so you can have as much of one thing you want and as little of another. So if you don’t like something (doubtful) then you can get away with not liking it. The was the first time I had beef in multiple weeks… so I took full advantage of it!
When we woke up Thursday we got to eat cereal!!! O my goodness… I didn’t realize how much I love milk! I hadn’t had it weeks and it tasted so wonderful! After breakfast we went to Jookseo Pavillion to write poems with our team (I might share mine with y’all later). The Pavillion was one of the places artists and writers used to go to in order to have quiet and gain inspiration from the beautiful lands and write or paint. It was incredible! All of the original sculptures and engravings were still there and it was just so overwhelming to picture that a long time ago famous paintings and poems were written and painted in that place. We left Jookseo Pavillion for Lunch and we at handmade traditional Buckwheat noodles. You could get hot or cold noodles… I got hot and they were delicious! They also had these clumps of potatoes in them that were very similar to the dumplings that you’d find in chicken and dumplings. Basically it was wonderful and tasted amazing! After Lunch we went to Ojukeon which is the birth place of a famous Korean classical scholar of Chosun Dynasty in the 17th Century. It was so cool because Ojukeon means Dark Bamboo and so there was Dark Bamboo everywhere. I had only seen green bamboo and they say the Dark Bamboo comes from the blood of a traitor and it filled the land so the bamboo soaked up the blood and that’s how Dark Bamboo came to be. Pretty Cool huh?! We got to walk around the grounds where famous people grew up! I don’t really know much more than that… but it was still very interesting and the best part was seeing how much the students loved hearing about the History of South Korea! They were sponges and it was so awesome to watch their expressions and see them ask all the questions.
Finally… after all the museums, caves, and pavilions we went to the BEACH!! It was freezing but that didn’t stop the students from getting into the water!! Some of them, most of them, had never been to the beach before and every single one of them were drenched!! They loved it! Seeing them rush into the ocean made me think of the song by Mikeschair. One of the verses and chorus go as follows… “God, You know where I’ve been, you were there with me then. You were faithful before. You’ll be faithful again. I’m holding Your hand. There’s a raging sea right in front of me, wants to pull me in bring me to my knees. So let the waters rise If You want them to. I will follow You.” It just makes me think over and over again about everything the students have been through, but how through it all God was with them the whole way and a lot of them didn’t even know it. Those who know it now look forward with a childlike faith because they know how blessed they have been by the hand of God. That even though they still are facing trials, they now have faith in the creator that loves them beyond comprehension.
One of my favorite moments, if not, my favorite moment of the whole trip was when I was at the beach looking out at the huge waves holding S’s hand. I started singing 10,000 reasons by Matt Redman. By the end of the song, S was humming along with me. Slowly tears started rolling down my face because we had sung that song before and I know that she understood was I was singing. Hearing her hum alongside me was one of the most beautiful sounds I’ve ever heard. It was the perfect ending to an incredible trip!!!
And they devoted themselves to the apostles’ teaching and the fellowship, to the breaking of bread and the prayers. And awecame upon every soul, and many wonders and signs were being done through the apostles. And all who believed were together and had all things in common. And they were selling their possessions and belongings and distributing the proceeds to all, as any had need. And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people. And the Lord added to their number day by day those who were being saved. -Acts 2:42-47
This was the main verse we had to read for yesterday’s bible study and as I read it I realized exactly what this summer is supposed to be about. My team and I are in South Korea and we are working with refugees. We’re going to be teaching them English. All the students have so much joy and the big question is, how do they have that much joy after everything that they have been through? The answer is simple, Jesus. Next question, how do they know about Jesus? The answer to that is also simple, but yet so complicated. There are people, like my team and I, who come and serve at the school every summer. There are also a select few that are staff at the school. They are full time missionaries that live with the students and teach them, not just English but the word of God as well. The Holy Spirit is so absolutely present in this school and it is so exciting to look forward to what God has in store for the summer.
However, coming to this summer I was thinking about what I would have to do… how I would grow… what challenges I would face… etc… The common theme in all of this is the word I. As soon as I met one of the students, I realized that this summer has nothing to do with me and everything to do with the students’ relationship with Jesus. The verse above was so convicting because it really speaks truth into the heart of what my team and I should be doing here in Seoul. We should be devoting ourselves to the Word of God and always seeking his guidance and strength. We should not be overwhelmed with petty differences or annoyances because at the end of the day the root of our souls is the same, Christ. Lastly, we need to love one another in a way that our love for Christ Shines through without any doubt. Showing the students the love of Christ and striving to share the Good News with them.
God works in mighty mighty ways! Adding to the number of believers day by day. That is my prayer for my summer and the students that I’ll be working with. I pray that God would add to the number of believers daily and the students would being a beautiful life saving journey with Christ.
Alright Peoples! I leave tomorrow for Orientation in Atlanta. I am nervous, excited, and so ready for my heart to be filled with the love and knowledge of God. I have been so busy checking off all of my different to-do lists that I am just now getting to where I am able to fully sit down and say to myself “you are going to South Korea, you are going to South Korea… AHHHHHHHHH” Granted I don’t leave for Korea until the 5th, but I really do feel that the IMB orientation is as much a part of my trip as the actually trip itself!
I’m going to FINALLY get to meet the rest of my teammates!! I’m so excited to meet all of them and my little human self hopes so much that they like me because I already love all of them so much! I love how when you start praying for someone or something that God completely changes your heart or gives you a heart toward that thing or person. Ever since I got the list of names of my teammates (and a mental image thanks to Facebook creeping:) ) I’ve been praying for them. Its weird to think that I love them so much but I haven’t even met them yet! I can’t wait to have little conversations with them and learn about their families, favorite foods, what music they like, and really just listen to their stories! I Love that my holy daddy hand picked each one of us to work together for his kingdom. Each of us may be completely different or the same, but either way at our core we all have the same yearning and passion for our creator. That alone is absolutely INCREDIBLE!!!!!
I know that I am not leaving for Korea tomorrow morning… Aka 6 hours from now. But, I may not get to post before I leave and I want y’all to know my feelings and thoughts about Korea before I actually get there and crazy incredible things start to happen! Ok so… My heart has always been so broken for people who are hurting and have been through extreme pain and torture. I don’t know if it was a calling or a gift God gave me, but my desire I hear their stories is so great and every time I hear one I never look at them with pity or sympathy but with empathy. I feel their hurt so deep in my core that I want to do whatever I can to the greatest extent that I can. Working with refugees and victims of torture I’ve seen that a lot of people are looking at them with pity and sympathy, but that’s not what they need. Having sympathy for someone is saying “I am so sorry that you loss your husband” being empathetic is above that. Meet the person where they are… Be their shoulder to cry on, listen to their stories, and help in the tangible ways as well as the intangible. The refugees that my teammates and I will be teaching English to will have stories that will absolutely blow our minds and we have been given this absolutely amazing opportunity to love on them. God has already started to prepare me a little bit, but I know based off of how I learn that being there in the thick of everything my heart will be utterly an completely broken over and over again for the people there. My prayer is that I would not be overwhelmed and that the spirit would speak through me and that the refugees would find the ultimate source of healing, a relationship with Jesus. Even as I’m writing this I’m crying and smiling because I know without doubt that I will witness miracles this summer.
“Look at the Nations and watch. Be utterly amazed. For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe even if you were told!” -Habakkuk 1:5
I know you can see time in a blog… But I just had to take a 20 minute break… So now I’m back and if you haven’t notice my blog style yet… It’s word and feeling vomit everywhere :) and I absolutely love it! I know that my post will be sporadic and random tangents here and there but I want to thank you or reading! I hope and pray you will continue to read all throughout the summer and pray for myself, my team, and the wonderful people I’ll be encountering. So before I leave, I want to thank you for reading and through that supporting me and my team. I am so very thankful!
So you know you have those days where Satan just gets you down. Or you are having an unbelievable day and then one thing happens and the rest of your day is crummy. I feel like that happens to a lot of us and pretty often. This morning started off pretty crummy. I was filling myself with worry and nonsense… I was freaking out so much about fundraising for my trip to South Korea that I forgot why I was going and who I was going for. I keep saying “my trip” and not “God’s trip.” I think of my money as my own and others as their own. In the middle of a mini panic attack.. I could hear God saying “why are you worried people won’t give you money? Money of all the worries… I blessed them with that money and they will give. You need to trust me You need to have faith in me. I will provide for you. The money that they have… it’s mine. I bless one child so they can bless another. I love one child so they can show that love to another.” How in the world could I forget how much God loves me? AHHHH!!!!! :D He is so incredible! Of course right after this revelation… Go Now Missions receives a $500 dollar donation towards my trip. I’ll take a mini panic attack any day that I need it if it can remind me of God’s unchanging love for me. Hopefully as I continue to spend more and more time with Jesus, it won’t take a panic attack it will just happen whenever I open my eyes.
I am going to go to South Korea this summer and in preparations I have been reading through the old testament this semester. I am constantly bring reminded about how sovereign and faithful God is. One of the biggest stories that has really been tugging at my heart is the story of Noah and his family. I know we have all heard the story multiple times and seen movies about it, but I had never really read/study, in depth, the story of Noah. Noah was the last righteous man left that was completely faithful to God. Noah was obedient when others condemned him and called him crazy. His obedience led God to spare him and his family from his wrath. When his wrath came, God wiped out the whole earth except for 8 people. 8 people. That’s INSANE! (Seriously… think about it!! ) Here’s my thought process…. God’s wrath was taken out on the entire world… eliminating everyone on the earth except for 8 people. When God took is wrath out again… he took it out on only one man, Jesus. Jesus took God’s wrath, ultimately his own wrath upon himself for us. So that we could know peace, joy, truth, love, happiness, and a God that is absolutely breathtaking. I crave so badly to tell the refugees this story!! They have suffered so much and know pain and loss like I can never imagine. Jesus has given me such an unbelievable opportunity to be able to tell people about what he did for them! I am fearful that I will be inadequate, but then I remember that I can boast in God through my weaknesses. Knowing that the Holy Spirit is ready and raring to go up to bat at any moment helps as well! I know God has a crazy plan for revival this summer, I can feel it!