Friday, July 11, 2014

Date Night Challenge

Do you and your spouse or significant other prioritize a few date nights every month? Do you try to go to the nicest restaurant around to enjoy for the night? Or maybe you aren't in a relationship but set aside money for special outings for yourself throughout the month. 

Well, I have a proposition for you. What if you used that night and the funds you would have spent and invest them in supporting my ability to work for Pioneers and mobilize students and adults to reach the unreached with the gospel. I am not asking you to give up your date night or time together. BUT instead one date night a month, pack a dinner and go to a park and enjoy that time there together, instead of at a fancy restaurant. 

Here is the exact idea of this "date night challenge":

1. Once a month you choose to pack a dinner (or go to McDonalds and get a large diet coke in my honor ;) ) for your date night instead of going to a "fancier restaurant". 

2. You then have it set up that every month, the sum of whatever you saved from dinner that night (anywhere from 25, 30, 50, even 100) is automatically put into my support account with Pioneers. 

3. Every month, I will send you an unreached people group that you can be praying for and sharing about throughout the month. 

4. You invite your friends and family to join you in the challenge. 

The goal is two fold. One, the more friends and family you invite, the sooner I will be fully funded to start my ministry of recruiting short and long term missionaries to the field. Also, this is an opportunity for you to educate your friends and family about the spiritual need for the gospel in so many communities around the world. 

WANT TO KNOW MORE ABOUT THE UNREACHED AROUND THE WORLD? Click this link for a past blogpost, as well as go to Joshua Project.'ve read this far and you want to accept this challenge. What now? 

1. Follow this link: and make sure to put in my account number 101401. Be sure it says "Schedule recurring EFT gift" in the drop down box and not "Schedule one time gift." Fill out the form and give whatever you believe you would be saving on your dinner by packing dinner instead. (Even if it is 10 is NEEDED and SO appreciated...but feel free to give more ;) )(if 10 couples or singles gave $10/month that is $100/month toward my need) 

2. Then, be sure to give me your email address so that I can add you to the email list and send you a new unreached people group to pray for every month. 

3. Tell your friends and family. Challenge them to join you in using your date night to advance the Kingdom and reaching the unreached with the gospel! 

4. If you are on instagram or twitter (I guess facebook now too) use the hashtag #marysdatenightchallenge so that I can see the pictures of your date night and how you are educating your kids, family, and friends on the unreached. 

I praise God for how He is working and I pray that you will ACCEPT this challenge and become as passionate as I am about getting the Gospel to those who need it most!! 

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

We are going to Camp!

I am SO excited to officially announce that I get to spend a whole week in July with this awesome family!

During the third week of July, I am blessed to be joining this family at Victory Lane Camp. Victory Lane Camp is a camp in Indiana especially for children with disabilities and their families! It is a Christian Camp that helps give families and members of their communities valuable training to empower the children and the family members. My role will be an extra set of hands for Tom and Angela as well as a partner in crime for the boys ;). There are special sessions just for them as parents and I will be able to hang out with the boys while they are in the sessions as well as helping however I can throughout the week. (Maybe even let them have a date night during the week ;) ) 

I am so excited for this opportunity to get to know the Humphrey family better as well as just love on them for the week. But, in order to get there, I need to raise about $200 more dollars! 

This is the link to their website you would like help get me to camp, you can just click the big "DONATE" and be sure to put my name in the subject line. (the link is through paypal, so if you do not have a paypal account.. you can always give me the check/cash and I can send it along to them.) 

Thank you so much for helping invest in my life so I can then invest in the Humphrey Family! I will be sure to have lots and lots of pictures and videos from our week at camp! 

In case you don't know about this crazy fun family, here is the info Angela provided for the camp bio: 

["After 28 years of marriage and as our 2 biological children were flying from the nest, we began praying in earnest about what God had next for us.  On our 3rd mission trip, we believe God answered those prayers when we met Ian on a visit to the Robin’s Nest Children’s Home in Jamaica. Despite having Cerebral Palsy, being non-verbal and non-ambulatory, Ian was a delightful 8 year old boy. He communicated quite well with eye gaze, expressions and gestures. God led us to begin the adoption process and 16 months later, we brought him home. Two years after adopting Ian, we again felt God leading us toward another adoption, this time through our local DCS.  Jeremy and Lucas (ages 9 and 6) were in foster care and needed a forever home. They began visiting on weekends in March, 2011 and their adoption was final in August. Due to past trauma, neglect and abuse in their lives, Jeremy and Lucas have many challenges to overcome. God is using all our boys to grow us in ways we never would have imagined.  Because of each of the boys’ unique and special needs, it has been difficult to find activities that we can all do as a family. A friend sent us a link to Victory Lane Camp and our interest was piqued when we realized that there were appropriate activities for all the boys but mostly the Christ-centered resources for the entire family."]

Saturday, May 31, 2014

nothing is impossible with God

It is such a privilege to lay your life at God's feet and watch Him provide. I have loved being able to do that these last few months. It is not easy. Actually, it is really hard. BUT God always provides. Through this process of submitting the nursing salary I could have and instead raising my salary so I can go into full time ministry, I have learned SO much. I have learned that I too easily get discouraged and let lies dominate my thinking instead of TRUTH. God has promised so much to me and I too easily fix my eyes on this world instead of the cross and His promises. He has promised that He will never change. He has promised that He will provide my EVERY need. He has promised that He will remain faithful even when I am faithless. He has promised that He will love me no matter what. He gave His Son to show that never ending, all encompassing LOVE.

I am learning that it is a privilege for me to ask my friends and family to partner with me in this ministry. It is an opportunity and not an obligation to allow them to give in this way. 

I count it a privilege to help (myself) and my friends and family move from a temporal man-made, horizontal, buying and selling, to ETERNAL, God designed, vertical giving and receiving. I am excited to help believers in transferring huge portions of their earthly banks to their heavenly bank. I look forward to allowing them to enjoy the rewards and multiplying dividends of their investment forever. The heavenly bank is full of riches, we only have to ask. *(excerpts taken from "God Ask")

"I have found that there are three stages in every work of God. First is impossible. Then it is difficult. Then it is DONE." -Hudson Taylor

I am excited to share with you an opportunity for you to join in the "Impossible". I am asking God for 75% of my support by the end of June. I am praying to have $2100/month raised by the end of June. That means I need to raise 1700/month within the month of June.This would seem impossible to me, if I didn't know that God already has this done. I just have to be faithful and ask.

I am SO excited to begin working with Pioneers as a recruitment coordinator. I will have the opportunity to recruit short and long term missionaries to join our teams around the world reaching the unreached with church planting missions. The GOSPEL is going out to the WORLD and I have an opportunity to be a part of that. Who wouldn't want to join in that? Because I am a nurse as well, I have the unique opportunity to recruit medical professionals to reach the undeserved populations with not just much needed medicine but the gospel as well. Oh I CANNOT wait to see how God is going to use the talents and abilities He has given me to reach the unreached with the Gospel. Oh how I love watching the Kingdom Grow!!!

Will you pray for me this month. That I will trust God as I make phone calls and meet with families and churches? I pray for bravery, a clear mind and ability to share the vision. I wait in expectation for God to meet this need. 

In order to have $1700/month: 
       -2 ministry partners to give at least $250/month
       -8 ministry partners to give at least $100/month
       -8 ministry partners to give at least $50/month

"The Lord will fulfill His purpose for me; your steadfast love, O Lord, endures forever. Do not forsake the work of your hands." Psalms 138:8

"Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we can ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations forever and ever. Amen" Ephesians 3:20-21

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Not as I planned...

I still struggle so when things don't go the way I want. You would think that after countless times of God proving that His way is better, I would've learned. BUT no. I still fight back. I still desire my plan to be acknowledged and put into action.

That's how I feel about these last few months. If it was my plan, we would have a treatment for mom and she would be on the road to getting better. She was supposed to be done with treatment by July and then I would feel comfortable moving to Florida after that. BUT that wasn't God's plan. Now we are completely clueless as to a next step and totally unsure what the next few days look like let alone the next few weeks.

I also wish that I could have my plan when it came to support raising to work for Pioneers. I had the "perfect plan" in place. I sent out the first group of my support letters and then a week or two later I would start following up and calling my friends and family and sharing the vision behind what I will be doing with Pioneers. BUT once again, that was not God's plan. Less than a week after I sent out my support letters, my mom was in the hospital for over two weeks. Then as soon as she got out, I had to study for my nursing boards (WHICH I PASSED!!!!!). But that means that it has been over a month since I sent out my support letters and I am JUST now SLOWLY starting to follow up with families.

This is definitely not how I would've planned to do things. HOWEVER, I have seen time and time again that when I submit myself to God's plan instead of my own, it works out SO much better. When I step back and allow Him to work, He gets so much more glory and it works out best for me.

Oh, when will I learn? To just step back and let Him take control from the beginning.

May God get the glory and be shown completely through these next few weeks.

Would you pray for me in this time of support raising? It can be incredibly challenging to humble yourself enough to ask your family and friends to partner with you and support you. But I know that this is the road that God has me on and I cannot wait to see where He leads.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Come what may...

Today we cried.
The weight of moms illness is finally becoming a reality to us.
It is real that the doctors don't know what to do next and we are at a loss as well.
BUT it is also real that all these earthly doctors do not know ANYTHING compared to our Great Physician in Heaven.
He has this under control.
He knows.
He can heal her if He wants.
And if not,
He will still get the Glory.

Praise God!! That is what we will do FOREVER!

This is the text copy of an email my dad sent to our support system this morning.

Dear Ones - We met with the oncologist yesterday;  Despite the fact that
Carol is feeling better - the news from the scan was not good.  The cancer
even with  the one chemo treatment is not retreating in fact some of the
lymph nodes increased in size.  This is just baffling to all the medical
minds that are working together for us.   This puts Carol in stage IV

Our next stop is Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN.
We have an appointment on May 27, 2014.

Due to medical travel restrictions it will take us about 3-4 days to get
there and they do not recommend flying due to cabin pressure changes and the
edema in Carol's legs.  So we will have a great time - doing some tourist
type things along the way :).  I will miss graduation :(.

- Please be praying for
        The medical staff as they compile all the records - we have to hand
carry them to Mayo
        Safe travel and a time of refreshment as we spend time together on
our journey to MN.

We praise God that our sorrow my last through the night BUT Joy comes in the MORNING!

"Come what may, I will follow you. Your gospel peace will see me through. On Sovereign Grace I will depend, to the end." -Abraham Cremeens

We are so thankful for our support system and we are praying to the God of miracles for a miracle for mom! :)

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

wonderfully made

For You created my inmost being, you knit me together in my mothers womb. I praise You because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful. I know that full well. Psalm 139: 13-14

The last few months, I have been thinking about this concept a lot. That we are all made in God's image and made perfectly because we were made by our perfect creator. If sin had not entered the world, we would all truly be perfect. There wouldn't be any sickness or crying or suffering or death. But, because of the fall and sin there is. Because we listened to the tempter and deceiver instead of our Savior, sin entered the world. And with sin came heartache, and death. BUT GOD, sent His son to redeem us from fear and sorrow of death. (For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life. -Romans 6:23) Through His son, we can have eternal life. What an incredible promise, that if we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness!! (1 John 1:9)

Now, back to my first point, that we were all created perfectly in the image of our creator. (Genesis 1:27) God did not make a mistake when he created my mom knowing she would have lymphoma. He did not take a nap when he created me with my autoimmune disease and osteoarthritis. He knit me together in my mother's womb. He created me fearfully and wonderfully. He did not make a mistake, he did not mess up. He created us each with our unique "problems" and hardships, but they aren't mistakes. He created me this way and He created my mom this way so that He would get the ultimate amount of glory and praise on this earth. I wouldn't want anything less!!! What a blessing it is to know that I was uniquely thought of and perfectly made. You are too! We were all knit together PERFECTLY in our mother's wombs. God does not make mistakes.

So when you are discouraged or feeling anything less than perfectly made, remember that you are FEARFULLY and WONDERFULLY made. God made you with a purpose and HE will get the GLORY from your life. I love reciting this back to myself when I am sitting with mom watching her suffer through some nasty illness. That God loves her and He created her exactly how He needed her to be. I also relate this to some of the children I have the privilege of working with. God created them PERFECT. He loves them just the way they are and He created them in HIS image. It helps me to love them unconditionally when I know that I see my Savior in their eyes. He is getting so MUCH glory through their lives and that is an awesome awesome thing.

This is not always an easy thing for me to remember, especially when I have flare ups with my Crohns disease or I watch my mom sick in a hospital bed. However, I know that James says to  "Count it all joy brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing." (James 1:2-3)

What a beautiful day it will be in HEAVEN when we can enjoy the GLORY of the Lord with NO MORE pain, heartache, sickness, cancer, fear, or death. But until then, we will endure and we will rest on the promises of our Savior.

I praise my God today that because of Him we know these promises to be true:

you are loved.
you are unique.
you are beautiful.
you are needed.
you are worthy.
you are made for so much more.

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Support Raising from the Hospital

When I started this journey towards working for Pioneers in Orlando, I never expected that I would have to take a few weeks off of support raising to be with my mom in the hospital. Nor did I expect to then start doing my follow ups from a chair at the foot of her hospital bed. But in His typical way, He has much greater plans for me and I am excited to see what He is going to do through all this.

So today I choose truth. I choose to remember that He is the one that I am doing this for and He is the one I serve. I am choosing to remember that He has a big picture in this and He will redeem this time. I am choosing to remember that this is all for His glory and I only have to sit back and be silent while I watch Him work.

And work He has. He has already been performing miracles in my mom's life. The night I wrote my last blog post, we are beginning to accept the fact that mom was going to have to have permanent dialysis up to three times a week because her kidneys were just not recovering. (BUT GOD), the next morning her creatinine MIRACULOUSLY was at 2.2. Because of this, we have not even heard the word dialysis since. PRAISE GOD! 

However,she still remains a mystery. The disease they believe she has (light chain deposition disease) is a very rare disease. There are less than 5000 reported cases of it EVER. Her oncologist has never seen it in her 30 years of working. Because of this, they are at a loss as to what to do next. They don't understand why this has happened or what the next steps are. We are continuing to pray for wisdom for her doctors and divine intervention as to what to do next. 

Now back to my support raising, I have decided that it is time to get back on the "support raising bandwagon". The Lord in His graciousness has truly redeemed this time. I was able to send out a good chunk of support letters before mom went into the hospital and I have had over 200/month be pledged towards my 2800/month goal. I feel so blessed. 

I have given this whole process to the LORD and am excited to watch Him work. 

Will you be praying though? Will you be examining your hearts to see if the Lord has called you to support me? 

I am slowly starting to follow up with my support letters so please be patient with me if you are waiting to hear more about what I will be doing and opportunities to support me in this. 

Here is my current support (plus almost a month's worth of one time gifts!)

I cannot wait to see this completely filled up!! God is doing BIG things in my life and in my families life!!