Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Global Xperience 2008 Brazil

ok, ok, i'm a slacker. i'm sorry it's taken me to update you all on my missions trip in june, but i've been swamped! so this was my first missions trip in 11 years! 18 of us headed down june 8th for 9 days. it was a jam packed trip i must say. we experienced so much! we did vbs, fed the homeless, served at a women's outreach, ministered to women in prison, went to an orphanage, participated in a couple of church services, and led worship in portuguese. Here are my teammates below....
i must say that the brazilians are amazing people!! they are so warm hearted and giving and they love to serve. they blew me away. i was so amazed at how willing they were able to give up their time, gas, energy, sleep, to help with translation, transportation, serving alongside us... whatever the need was, they were right there to help us. and most of the people helping us were young men. i feel like there are so many men in america who fail to step up and serve in the church. i was very impressed needless to say. it really made me think about how selfish i am with my time here in america. so thanks to my new brazilian friends for knocking me upside on my head :-)

so...there were a couple of really cool things that happened on the trip for me. the first one was that i had an opportunity to lead worship in portuguese on three different occasions. the first time we led, we were at the women's ministry at barra church. do you remember, in my prayer letter, when i asked that god would take me out of my comfort zone? well, sure enough, he came through on that one :-) for those of you that know me real well, you know that i am very much a planner and organizer. normally when i lead worship at church each week, i have my nalgene bottle full of water, hot tea, cough drops, and i have about two hours of time to warm up my vocal cords, not to mention that i'm also singing in a language that i know:-) so that morning that jay and i lead worship, it was 8:30 in the morning, i hadn't gotten very much sleep, i had no water, no hot tea, no cough drops and i hadn't warmed up my voice. i was extremely nervous to stand up in front of 100 women and "attempt" to sing songs in their language. before i left for brazil, i had worked on some pronunciation on some of the words and i had written in notes on my music. well...it just so happened that i couldn't find my music with the notes of them anywhere that morning. i was freaking out inside, when god reminded me that he was in control and not me. i had to give it over to god and let the holy spirit work through us. it was amazing to see how god showed up!! once we started singing, a peace washed over me and i could feel the hold spirit singing through us. it was so cool to be able to worship with these women in their own language. my teammates were spread throughout the church singing in english and it was such a cool reminder that even though there were two languages being sung, it all sounds the same to god. how precious it was to worship one god with my sisters in christ all the way over in brazil. i am so thankful for god allowing me to be able to do this through his strength!
the other really cool thing that god allowed me to do was to share my testimony on the trip. i had actually been praying for more opportunities to share my testimony, so when jay asked me to share, i knew it was god answering my prayer and that i had to be obedient to it. i was scared to death! it was the first time for me to share my testimony in front of a large group. it was at a small church of about 100 people. it was tricky doing it with a translator too. i was super nervous to get up in front of everyone, but as soon as i got up in front of the microphone, a peace washed over me and god gave me every word that needed to come out of my mouth. it was amazing to see him get me through that experience. afterwards, people were coming up to me hugging me and crying with me and telling me how much it ministered to them. praise the lord! i am so excited that my testimony is able to be used to glorify god and to minister to others. i am truly grateful for this experience that god gave me on the trip :-) when god calls us to do something, he will give us EVERYTHING we need to complete it.

thanks to all of you who supported me on this trip financially and for all of your prayers! i cannot thank you enough for being a part of my trip in this capacity! thank you so much from the bottom of my heart! i'm looking forward to taking another missions trip in the future, hopefully to brazil again. the brazilians we came in contact with are so amazing and they hold such a special place in my heart...

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