The Fingerprints of God

finger prints of godI love to look back and see what God saw all along.

Yet, when you are in the midst of “life”, it is hard to detect the hand of God.

As a young child, I vividly remember a missionary coming to our church sharing about her life in Argentina. I thought she looked funny in her “costume”. I thought she talked a little weird, sure. But, I was mesmerized with the idea that she was living in some far off place, telling people about Jesus. It seemed so exciting, and I knew someday I wanted to do just that.

In junior high, I began voice lessons, which I ended up taking for some 9 years. I didn’t know then why, but on Sunday as  I sang with our team in the English service, the Lord reminded me of His bigger picture.

When I was in college, I went through a dark time, where all I had was the Lord. And I learned that He was enough. A lesson I would need over and over again as the Lord led me onward, serving Him around the world.

In seminary, though I wanted to go straight to the mission field, God wanted me to have a partner first. Which led me to switch degrees and get my Masters in Christian Education rather than Masters in Missiology. Having to change degrees made me angry at the time, but overwhelms my heart now as I look back now at why. Having used this “degree” to serve kids on the mission field.

Two wonderful years in Korea, gave us a taste of life overseas, wetting our appetites for more. That has thus led us to where we are today, in Central Asia.

Two difficult years living in the states, two years of waiting on God, and not understanding why everything had to be so hard. Prepared us for the difficulties we face regularly now.

The truth we all know, is that nothing is wasted in God’s plan. No situation, no circumstance is only coincidence. No, every detail of every day of our lives is a small part of the big picture God wants to paint.

When I look back at my life, I stand amazed. Not because of anything I have accomplished.

I stand amazed at how amazing my God is.

Humbled and astonished that God could and would use the tiniest details of my days, to prepare me for right here, right now.

Sometimes, I wonder at what the next 10 years or so will be like. What they will entail.

I think, what is God using “now” to prepare me for “then.”

The truth is I don’t have a clue. Yet, I do know that whatever it is, it will be good.

And I know that what I’m learning now, God will use then.

Friend, wherever God has you right now, be all there.

Embrace that place, embrace those circumstances, embrace even the difficulties. For what you are going through now, where God has you now is all for His purposes.

You may not understand the why now.

However, one day you will look back, and you will see How Great is Our God!

Recently I was talking with our pastor. Who was saying how much he enjoys it when he can catch a glimpse of God’s bigger picture.

I couldn’t agree more.

So often we are caught up in the daily grind, and we miss it.

We miss God.

Yet, He is there. Molding us, shaping us, building us, growing, us, stretching us. So that He can use us even more later.

May the Lord give us eyes to see as He see’s .

So that we may rejoice in where He has us now. Knowing, believing that there is “more” to the story, just around the corner.

His fingerprints are everywhere, if we would just take a step back and look.

No where does He leave us. He goes before us, with us and behind us.

Maybe you’re in a place you don’t want to be… I’ve been there. Yet, I encourage you to hold on and hold fast to the Lord. Wait upon Him, and one day soon, you will look back and understand.

Maybe your starting a new journey. Change is hard, but God is with you. You are never alone. And never forget, He has prepared you for this day, your ready. Go and await His goodness.

You could be in the midst of your journey, like me. And you can look back and see His fingerprints. Enjoy this time, and allow Him to use your “now” to prepare you for the days ahead.

Wherever God has you, be all there.

And allow Him to teach you, to use you, to grow you and to encourage you.

Then one day soon, you will look back and you will see all that God has done for you. And you will know that He alone is the One true God, and the only One worthy of praise.

In His Presence

his presenceSaturday morning was a rush. I had hit snooze a few too many times. Rushed around crazily trying to get everyone dressed for church, and  get myself dressed.

I ran down stairs and made chocolate chip muffins for breakfast (because chocolate is always good, any time of day), and coffee…. lots of coffee.

After everyone had eaten, the dishes were washed, we got into the car, and headed to the church. Dodging, motorbikes, cars, people, and cows along the way.

I practiced with the children for our upcoming choir performance, and finally sat down for worship.

This was my husbands Saturday to preach. So for a change, I understood the message since it was in English, and God spoke to my heart. Reminding me of why He had sent us here. Reminding me that though some days are hard, it is all worth it.

And as we stood to sing and to pray, such amazing peace washed over my heart. Peace that truly passes all understanding.

It was then that I realized the beauty of being in His presence.

For it is in His presence we find joy. In His presence we find peace.

It is in His presence that all the rest of “life” slips away, and we are caught up in His amazing love.

It was a beautiful moment, but also a moment of conviction. For I realized that I had neglected His presence that morning in my rush to get to church. I understood the importance of being in His presence.

The Bible tells us to “Be still and know I am God, I will be exalted among the nations…” Just be still.

I’m learning that God doesn’t really need me. He can accomplish His works without my help.

But I’m finding that apart from Him, I truly can do nothing. It is me, who needs Him, every moment of every day.

The Lord is teaching me that in order to have joy, peace, love, strength… I must dwell in His presence.

As the service closed, and the business of the rest of the day loomed ahead, I had peace, I had joy. Both of which came from Him.

Sometimes living in such a different culture is hard. Many times, I lack understanding.

Yet, I wouldn’t trade it for the world.

Where are you today? Are you running on empty? Feeling frazzled, exhausted, worn. Believe me I know and I understand. I’ve been there.

But my advice to you and to myself is this…. Go, and get alone with the Lord. Dwell in His presence, draw your strength from Him. Allow Him to transform your mind, and fill your heart with peace.

Often we “think” we don’t have time to spend time with the Lord.

Yet, this is the lie of Satan. We dont’ have time, not to spend time with the Lord.

And we will run on empty, we will feel frazzled if we seek to live for Him and serve Him in our own strength, our own power.

Instead, we must go and sit at HIs feet. Draw near to Him and allow Him to draw near to us.

Only then will we find the joy, peace, love, hope, grace and strength for what lies ahead.

 

A Wife and Mom’s First Priority

beach-time-005I have been married now for 14 years and have three great kids, 13, 11, and 7.

The early years of marriage I stayed at home loving on my babies.

Then I became a home school mom, teaching my little ones their numbers and ABC’s.

Yet, all of these years I was also a pastor’s wife.

Then our family moved to Korea, and I became a missionary wife and home school mom.

Now living in Central Asia, I am once more the missionary wife, but this time my kids are in school. Giving me extra time for ministry and work in the field.

I have loved this added aspect of life, but in many ways have also missed my time at home with the kids.Missed having the house and dinner ready for my husband’s arrival.

The past year, our first year here, has been a whirlwind. The days have flown by, as we have been every so busy. And if I’m not careful it is easy to lose sight of what my first and most important ministry is.

Because more important than ministering to the people here, more important than “doing” ministry. Is ministering to my husband and kids.

After God, they are to come first.

The Lord has been teaching me this, and as I have prayed and asked Him to show me how to minister to my family. He has spoken to my heart and said, it is the basic, day-to-day things that show them they are important.

It is having an orderly (notice I didn’t say clean 🙂 ) home to come home to.

It is having cookies baked for the kids.

It is listening to my husband after he has had a long day.

Listening to my kids tell me about their days.

It is making sure they have a good, filling breakfast to start their day and a nutritious meal to end their day.

It is all these things and more, but it is the little things.

Someday’s this is not possible. Some days, we all arrive home at the same time, and I have to scramble to get dinner on the table.

Some days,  we over sleep and breakfast is cereal and bread.

Other days, are busy and we are all moving in different directions.

Yet, the majority of days should include all of the above.

Because as a wife, my first priority is to my husband.

As a mom, my first priority is to my kids.

I can not minister to others, while I neglect my family.

In order to minister well to others, I must first minister well to my family.

So to the stay at home mom, I’ve been there and I remember the days I felt discouraged. But I am here to encourage you to embrace the time you have with your family. And don’t despise the daily grind, look at it as a way to minister to your spouse and kids.

To the pastor’s wife/missionary wife… never forget that your first priority is your family. Serve first the Lord, then your family, and then others.

To all wives, God has designed it so that your ministry is first and foremost to your family. This is His perfect design. Let us then not grow weary, let us not think what we do is trivial, but let us embrace this God given ministry and serve our families well.

The days go fast, children grow quick… may we use each day to serve the ones God has given unto us, and may we use each day to serve the Lord through them.

 

God’s Bigger Plans

 

trusting godOn Wednesday I got to teach a group of ladies here in Nepal about the sovereignty of God. As I prepared to teach and taught, I was reminded of the greatness of our God. For God is sovereign over creation, plants, animals, the nations, kings and authorities. He is sovereign over every detail of our lives. And though we are told to plan,though we make choices each day. Ultimately it is God’s will that takes place.

I told this group of ladies that if they had told me when I was a teen that I would one day be sitting in a room with them, in Nepal teaching them about God’s sovereignty I would have said they were crazy. Because this was not my plan.

My plan as a young naïve teen was to be a big shot attorney, wearing stiletto hills, carrying a briefcase, living in NYC. My plan was to remain single and it certainly did not include children.

Yet, this was far from the plans God had envisioned for my life.

Now here I sit, on the other side of the world, living in Kathmandu, Nepal. Married for 14 years with 3 children.

Yet, He didn’t pluck me from college and deliver me here. It has been a journey. A journey of serving Him in Arkansas, Tennessee, Korea, and finally here in Nepal.

As I sat singing hymns in Nepali today, as I sat and listened to the prayer request of the ladies, and watched them bow with their faces to the ground to pray. I was overwhelmed.

See, my plans were far from sufficient.

My plans served only me.

But God’s plans are amazing, and they are all about service to Him.

Sometimes, the reality of what God has called me to do and the privilege it is to be here take my breath away.

Oh, it is certainly not always easy, and some days home sounds really good.

Yet, overall, I couldn’t have planned or dreamed that this is how God would ordain my days.

To think that He has saved me, called me and sent me out for His glory.  Humbled!

To look around and see so many who don’t know Him. Broken!

To get to be a part of what He is doing around the world. Amazing!

My plans fell so short of the greater plans God had, and I am so glad, so thankful that His plans and not mine were the ones to be fulfilled.

I don’t know where you are right now? But God does.

I don’t know what plans He has for your life? But I guarantee that if you wait upon Him and seek His plans, you will be amazed.

I don’t know what your life hold, but I do know who hold your life in His hands.

His plans, His ways, they are perfect.

And God is in control. He is sovereign over all, and His plans for you and for me… they will be fulfilled.

What a privilege, what a joy to get to be apart of this great adventure.

Allowing God to Choose

jim elliotOur family is reading through I Samuel in our morning devotions (well most mornings anyway 😉 ) and today we read of how the Israelites chose to have Saul as their king. “And now behold the king whom you have chosen, for whom you have asked: behold, the Lord has set a king over you (I Sam. 12:13).”

In this passage Samuel has reminded them of all God has done for them. How He has been with them and delivered them from countless enemies. Yet, they have rejected Him, and want instead a king, so that they can be like all the other nations.

Samuel is quick to let them know that God has heard their prayer and answered, though he knows this was not what was best.

This morning I made pancakes, and when the plate was passed to my daughter she was quick to take the one that was the biggest. My oldest son, said, “of course you took the best one.” I smiled and told him, he would most likely have done the same.

We all have a tendency to be like Lot, who looked at his options and chose for himself which was most appealing to his eyes. Whereas Abraham allowed God to choose for Him, and in the end received that which was best.

The truth is, if left to ourselves, we will choose according to our hearts desire. And if we desire something enough and ask the Lord for such request, He just might answer it. Though in the long run, what we sought was not the best.

Growing up, I can remember singing at the  top of my lungs the old Garth Brooks song, “Unanswered prayers.” Today I was reminded of this song. For though the author had prayed and asked God for many things, God had said no, because He had something better.

The other night my husband and I watched a Hallmark movie entitled “Loving Leah.” In this movie, the daughter is talking with her mom about her desire to go to college (though she is Jewish and this wasn’t looked favorably upon). Her mother made the statement, “Be careful, it may be that God will just give you what you want.” This stuck with me. For you see, she wasn’t meaning this in a good way. She was letting her daughter know that though she didn’t see this as God’s will, that the Lord just might answer her prayer and give her something which wasn’t His best.

I told the kids this morning, that it is always best to allow God to choose for us. It is always best to leave the answers up to Him. Sure, we can pray and  ask for that which our hearts desire, but we must allow God to decide. And that sometimes when God says no, it isn’t because He is being mean or holding out on us. It is just that He has something better for us, if we will just wait on Him and trust Him.

Our natural, fleshly tendency leads us to want to choose for ourselves where we will go, what we will do, whom we will marry, what job we will have, where we will live…..

Yet, it is better. No, it is best to allow the Lord to choose. Best to bring our request unto Him, but allow Him to do the leading.

Though we may not always understand His decisions, and at times, His choice may cause us pain or discomfort. He unlike us see’s the full picture and truly does know what is best for us.

For me, I would never have chosen to move my family to Nepal. I would have never have chosen to be here when the earthquakes occurred. I would not have chosen any of this. Yet, I rest in the fact that God has chosen this place and this time for us. Though I don’t always like His choice, and there are days it is hard. I know that His choice is best for us, and I rest in Him.

So then, let us, set our gaze upon Him, take our hands off the reigns and allow Him to truly lead us.

Serving Jesus in the hard places…

ramadan

Praying for, sending missionaries to, and caring about Muslims has become a controversial topic among even Christians today. I can remember hearing Mack Stiles account of moving his family to Dubai soon after the dreadful 9/11 attacks. They knew God was calling them to go, and had been preparing to leave when the twin towers were struck. The day after 9/11, they hammered the For Sale sign in their yard, and began to deal with numerous people telling them they should not go.

The truth is to go and serve the Lord among an Islamic nation is a fearful thing. The persecution is intense, and many times deadly. Going to these countries which are in the 10/40 window. Countries where the most unreached live, is a hard thing.

Yet, what strikes my heart, and makes me wince is that some “Christians” have such a hatred for the Muslim,and do not think they are worth the bother.

God has given me a heart for the Muslim people. A people who have been blinded by the god of this world to believe such outrageous lies about what it means to serve god. A people so dedicated to their faith that they are willing to die for it. A people who need nothing more than the saving Gospel of Jesus Christ.

Why do those followers of the Islamic terrorist group ISIS, kill? Why do Muslims fasten bomb around themselves killing innocent people? Why is their so much persecution among the Islamic countries toward Christians?

BECAUSE THEY ARE LOST!

Why do Hindus go to temples daily, ringing bells, bringing offerings, and offering sacrifices to their gods?

BECAUSE THEY DO NOT KNOW THE LOVE OF JESUS.

Why to non believers/atheist live as they please.

BECAUSE THEY LIVE ACCORDING TO THE FLESH AND THE GOD OF THIS WORLD.

Friend, why do we expect the lost to live in ways that are pleasing? Why are we surprised when the lost do such evils?

We should not be surprised, we should instead be broken over their state, and commit to pray for them, and tell them of God’s saving grace.

June 18-July 17 marks the 30 day annual time of praying and fasting among the Muslim world, called Ramadan.

During Ramadan, observant Muslims abstain from eating and drinking from sunrise to sunset for the entire month. A single sip of water or a puff of a cigarette is considered enough to invalidate the fast. The fast is intended to bring the faithful closer to God and to remind them of the suffering of those less fortunate.

Maybe God is calling you to go and serve Him among an Islamic state. Maybe He is asking you to reach out to the Muslim community right where you live?

But what I do know, God is calling each of us to pray for these, and especially during this month of Ramadan.

You can download a prayer guide here and ways in which God can use you to reach out to the Muslims around you http://stories.imb.org/eurasia/interactives/view/ramadan-an-opportunity

May we commit to pray for, send to and go to people such as these who do not know the love of God. May God breaks our hearts over these who have never heard of Jesus, and who are believing lies.

Salvation through Christ is for all, Jesus died to save all who believe. Those who believe in the US, Africa, Nepal, China, Korea, Japan, Brazil, Suriname, Iran, Iraq, Syria and the list goes on.

Do they deserve to hear the good news of Christ? No, but neither did we. Yet, God in His amazing grace revealed Himself to us. Let us then show the same grace by going and praying for those who have not yet heard.

The lost are simply that, lost.

They need the only one who can change their lives, JESUS.

 

Finding Normal

imagesIt has been over a month now since the great Nepal earthquake.

And though most around the world have forgotten what took place on Saturday,April 25th.

The people of Nepal can’t seem to forget.

Finding “normal” has not been easy for anyone.

To this day, many continue to sleep outside because they have no home to return to, or out of fear.

A month later, schools are just set to resume tomorrow. Yet, schools for some kids will mean meeting under tarps because their school was destroyed.

The hospitals are full of wounded and mentally emotional people. Some who have lost arms and legs because of that one dark day.

I read today of the 7.8 earthquake (originally recorded at 8.5) quake that hit outside of Tokyo. And though the report read that the building swayed for a full minute, though I’m sure there was incidence of injury and possible deaths, it compared not to the 7.8 quake that struck Nepal.

Yet, already the news has moved away from Nepal, as most have moved forward.

But as a friend so eloquently put it, it is difficult to move forward with “normal” when daily the aftershocks continue.

The truth is, this earthquake set Nepal back many years. The truth is, Nepal was already behind the times, and now has even farther to go.

A Christian man told a friend that though he has a whole field of potatoes ready to sell, no one is buying.

The devastation here can’t be put into words.

And though many relief organizations are here, seeking to serve the people. Though money has been sent from various countries. It does not “fix” Nepal.

It won’t be long and the Monsoon rains will begin to pour. Already this past week, it has rained almost every night.

And as I sit inside my home, and hear the rains pour down, my heart hurts.

For all I can think of is the hundreds of people who are tonight sleeping under tarps. Tarps that do little to protect them from the rains.

And there is an urgency to go and help the people. A feeling of helplessness as I seek to comprehend the masses of people here who need help.

Yet, then I’m reminded that the urgency is far greater to go and tell them of Jesus. The One True Source of Help.

It still breaks my heart when I think of the 8.000 plus people who died as a result of this earthquake. I’m sad of course for the families, but more so I’m heartbroken over the fact that many of these died without knowing Jesus, who is the Way, the Truth, and the Light.

When we first arrived to Nepal, I had a hard time adjusting, because there is little here that seems “normal” to my western mindset.

Even today as we drove to church, and passed at least 6 cows, all I could do was smile and shake my head. For to the Nepalese, this is normal, but to me… well far from it.

But normal since the earthquake is even greater, and not only for me as a westerner, but for the Nepali people.

Life is hard for the Nepali people, yet even more so now.

All over the city people are looking for safe shelters. Yet, many buildings, apartments, and homes have been declared unsafe.

Thousands have left Kathmandu for their villages. Yet for many of these villages, there is little that survived.

No finding “normal” in Nepal isn’t easy. Yet the people are trying, we are trying.

Tomorrow the kids will return to school, tonight we watched a hallmark movie via “YouTube.”

Why? Because life has to go on.

Satan would love to have everyone to live in fear, to paralyze people.

But Jesus came to give life and life abundant.

So we will find “normal” admist the rubble here in Nepal.

The people here who are so resourceful and hard working, will rebuild their homes, their lives.

But what they need, what we all need isn’t “normal,” it is forgiveness and eternal life.

For we can build homes, we can provide relief, but one day everyone will still die.

And on that day where will we all stand?

Will we hear “well done my good and faithful servant?”

Or, “depart from me, for I never knew you?”

It is my prayer that every one of you and the people of Nepal will hear, “Welcome Home, my good and faithful servant.

For on that day, that is the only thing that will matter!

 

 

Superstitions

god knows all thingsMany people here in Nepal are superstitious. Some common superstitions include that, if a crow sits in front of your house or above the roof, and it makes the sound “Kaa-kaa,” that means a guest will come.  If a woman’s left eye starts to twitch, it’s good luck, but if a man’s right eye starts to twitch, it’s bad luck. If someone leaves from the house for a special purpose (wedding, first day of school, traveling), he or she has to eat some yogurt for good luck.

 

Yesterday the people of Nepal were very scared. Because some fortune tellers predicted that another big earthquake would strike Nepal. For this reason, many stayed outside of their homes all afternoon. Some closed their shops for the day.

When I heard the news I was just finishing up Bible study time with the kids. I told my children what was being said. And my oldest asked the question, “I thought fortune tellers weren’t real?”

The truth is often times, when faced with questions concerning fortune tellers, witches, magic etc. I have been quick to say it is all just make-believe or pretend. Basically saying that these things aren’t real. Which is what Hollywood has strived to do for years, placing witches and wizards into cartoons and dressing up old ladies as fortune tellers.

Yet, the reality is, in many parts of the world and especially in Asia, fortune tellers are very much believed, as are witch doctors in numerous places throughout the villages.

So I had to explain that though sometimes these things are made up or pretend, that this isn’t always the case. And that the real ones do have powers, powers that come not from God, but from Satan.

To which Andrew replied, “well that’s kinda of freaky.” And I smiled and agreed. Yet, I couldn’t let it end there.

So I further explained that though these fortune tellers had predicted a great earthquake, our God is greater.

The truth is, God is the only one in control.  Satan has only the powers which the Father has allowed.

I asked the kids, “What do you think will bring the Lord more glory? If there is another earthquake proving the fortune tellers correct? Or, if nothing happens, showing that it is God who is in control?

The day came and it went, and though there were small aftershocks, there was no great earthquake like the people had predicted.

Why? Because only God knows these things. Because only God is in control.

Today a lady in the Bible study group commented how yesterday while at work, her boss said they would close up shop early due to these predictions. She said that she tried to tell the lady that nothing would happen, because God was in control, but the lady would  not believe.

Another lady shared how some had believed that a large quake was going to hit this past Saturday. She is the only Christian in her family, but on Saturday her grandson came to church with her. When they got home, everyone was outside in fear of another large quake. The boys parents tried to tell them to stay outside, but the little boy told them, that he was not afraid, he was going inside with his grandma, because her God was in control.

The truth is no one can predict what the day will entail, no one know what the future holds.

Except the Lord God Almighty.

I’m so thankful that My God showed Himself mighty yesterday, proving that it is He and He alone who is in control, and that nothing can happen that He doesn’t first give His approval to.

Blessings from Nepal.

When bad things happen… God is still God!

hokshe earthquakeWhy does God allow difficult times? Why does He allow bad things to happen to good people? These are classic questions that people have been asking for years.

After experiencing this earthquake, I have been intrigued with what the Scriptures have to say concerning earthquakes. My husband reminded me that the first earthquake took place when Korah sinned against God and the earth swallowed him and his family up. This morning I thought about the day Jesus died, and how the darkness covered the earth and the earth shook.

On Sunday, Eric preached from Acts 16, when Paul and Silas were in prison. See, they had been sent to Macedonia after receiving direction from the Lord to go. When they arrived, they had met opposition on every side, and in the end found themselves in prison,after having been beaten for no good reason. As they are in jail, the hour nears midnight, and they are singing praises to the Lord (that’s a whole other post 🙂 ) When suddenly the Bibles says there was a great earthquake. It doesn’t tell us what it registered on the Richter scale, but I’m here to tell you it had to be at least an 7-9 in order to break open the prison doors. Not only did it break open the prison doors, it broke the shackles off of each prisoner. Yet, amazingly, the prison did not crumble. Yet more amazingly is the fact that they all remained in the prison.

Having been through an earthquake, this is striking. For as soon as people felt the quake, they were out the door if at all possible. The biggest aftershock that struck a day after the massive earthquake, found me inside the house washing dishes. Yet, as soon as I felt it shake, I was out the door with the kids.

Yet, Paul and Silas and all the prisoners remained. Amazing.

But what is more wonderful, is the fact that it was because of the earthquake that the jailer and his whole family were saved.

As I look around at the destruction, I have to believe there is a bigger picture going on.

I believe in the days ahead, we will be able to look back, and see the hand of God, and how He used this disaster for His glory, for the salvation of many.

So, as our family ministers, as we go and deliver food, tents, and supplies. We go as Christ Ambassadors.

We are therefore Christ Ambassadors, as though God were making his appeal through us. We implore you on Christ behalf, be reconciled to God.
2 Corinthians 5:20

In the Blink of an Eye

nepal earthquake 3Today, marks one week since the major earthquake that shook Nepal. Since then there have been numerous aftershocks. Which they say is normal, but none the less frightening.

A week ago, our family woke up to celebrate our daughter Lauren’s birthday. It was just a normal Saturday morning, the kids had friends to sleep over, and we had cinnamon rolls for breakfast. Then we proceeded to get ready for church. Lauren opened her gifts and was excited to get a Nepali dress that she could wear to church that day.

Church proceeded as normal, until the close of the service when earthquake struck. And in the blink of an eye, life here in Nepal changed.

This past week, the sounds of jets soaring above our house has been constant, as rescue teams have come from around the globe. Work has been done to find the living buried among the dead. Work has been done to get those wounded the medical treatment needed. Work has been done to provide tents, food, and water to those hit the worst. And the work continues, and will continue for months to come.

Today was kind of surreal, as we met in the church. It was to be honest quite unsettling to be up on the third floor. Yet, as I taught the children about the sovereignty of God, I taught myself. See, this earthquake did not take the Lord by surprise. This earthquake was not a shock to our God. And though it is tragic, and though life here has changed and the country is in turmoil. God is still on His throne.

Some may ask, why has God allowed this to happen, why did He allow some churches to collapse, why did He allow Christians to die in such a tragic way. I told the kids today, that though we can’t understand the ways of God. Though right now it doesn’t make sense. That I believe years from now we will be able to look back and see the hand of God. We will see how God took a horrific situation and used it for His good and for His glory.

Today, as we were on our way to church, we were on the public transportation. A young man who spoke great English struck up a conversation with us. He asked where we were from, (which is quite normal), but then he asked, why we were still here?

The Nepali people don’t understand why we would stay here, when we could leave. They don’t understand why we want to help their people.

Yet isn’t this why we came, so that we can be His hands and His feet?

In the blink of an eye, life here was forever changed. In the blink of an eye, families lost loved ones, and homes were destroyed. Yet, the reality is in each of our lives, that is all it takes. Whether in the States or on the mission field, lives are changed in the blink of an eye.

The question is not why God allows such things to take place, the question is are we ready if He does? Are we ready to stand before Him?

The question isn’t why, the question is will we praise Him even when tragedy strikes?

I don’t know where you are today, I don’t know what difficulties you may be facing. Yet, I do know that God is with you. He is walking right beside you. I do know that regardless of what happens, He is worthy of our praise, and has told us to give thanks in all circumstances.

I challenge you as He has challenged me to rest in Him. To rest in His sovereignty, and know that He is completely in control.