Coffee and Nutella...at 5AM

On the short flight to Charlotte, NC, I was blessed to be sitting by a girl from Cali who was returning home from a Missions Conference.  She is in the process of raising support for a 10-month mission trip to Thailand, and it was a huge encouragement talking with her.  We prayed together as the plane was landing, and through this, the Lord surely blessed me with confidence in the work He is going to do in and through us this summer.
On Friday, after what seemed like a lifetime, our team finally landed in Athens, Greece…stiff-legged!  Pavalos, the pastor of the Greek Evangelical Church of Peiraias, greeted us at the airport.  We have already seen the necessity of becoming more flexible to the slower paced Greek culture, the changing of plans, as well as the falling through of plans!  We were originally supposed to be staying at the Bible College, but it would be packed quarters until the end of next week.  So, we are now staying at the Greek Evangelical Church for about 6 days.  Also, we were to be traveling to Volos the first week, and now we’ll be going after our 6 days in Peiraias.
Saturday morning we were able to sleep in and take a short stroll around the neighborhood, having not the slightest idea where we were going.  Ms. Vicki, a mother figure of the church, prepared Tyro pita and Baklava around 1PM; she then gave us a better-directed tour – taking us to the port and beaches.  In a way, this can be a parable God used to show us that we really can't do things on our own, but with His guidance, He'll show us the beautiful, good things...especially in a place that is not our home.
As Ms. Vickie began preparing dinner for us, I became even more excited about practicing what little Greek I know with her.  She guided me through phrases and vocabulary as I pointed to everything I could find so she could tell me the word for it.  It was quite entertaining, considering she speaks little English.  However, she knows Spanish, Portuguese, and Greek - so my 2 years of Spanish were somewhat beneficial.  I learned she was born and raised in the Dominican Republic and has lived in Greece for 27 years now - it took her 6 months to learn the Greek tongue.  She laughed with me and said she enjoyed my questions because she was reminded of herself – always curious and wanting to learn.  So, she kept asking me “What more, what more?”
We, as a team, are in the process of getting to know each other and soak everything in.  We are all trying to get comfortable in a place where we were just thrown into, and right now, have feelings of a lack of direction.  Our mentor couple will not be arriving for 2 more weeks as well as Emily, a new addition to the team who we have yet to meet.  Right now, we are definitely in need of having go-with-the-flow attitudes and rest while we can (I like the sound of that)...
I am awake writing this at 5AM because I could not sleep.  Several of us couldn’t.  Elise and I were woken up by the heat and a mosquito that wouldn’t quit pestering us, and we couldn’t get back to sleep due to the loud commotion on the street… Also, the nightmares I’ve been having for about a month now still won’t cease.  I am hoping I will soon be able to sleep peacefully!  So, we stayed awake, talking and eating nutella and toast.  But we have church at 10:30 so I am going to try and rest for a short while.

In Christ,


Joy Comes with the Morning

Psalm 30:5b "Weeping may tarry for the night, but joy comes with the morning."

God has been using the phrase "Joy Come with the Morning" in my life a lot lately - and the way He works it into my life has become quite humorous.
One night, a few weeks ago, I felt incredibly unprepared, insufficient, and lacking the financial support to get me to Greece for the mission to which I have been called this summer.  That night, some tears were shed along with a cry for the faithfulness of the Lord.  But the next morning, I was brought back to the humble reality that Christ makes all things possible, and impossible is not a word in God's dictionary.  That morning, my anxieties, fears and doubts were swept away by His faithfulness.
The day began by finding out I had an A in a class I thought I was practically failing (something to give me a bit of hope for the day), a couple of phone calls from churches and families offering a great deal of financial support for Greece (adding more proof of God's call for me to serve in Greece this summer), and blessings of encouragement from strangers and acquaintances (providing the affirmation I needed at the time and knowing God will equip me).  Indeed, joy comes with the morning!  And indeed, He remains faithful!

Not always will our weeping only last one night.  Oftentimes, our days of mourning last a while, but God remains faithful as we draw on Him for strength and hope.  You have turned for me my mourning into dancing you have loosed my sackcloth and clothed me with gladness...~Psalm 30:11  So, instead of becoming cast down during our toils, we are to look to the Lord for His faithfulness.  He will remain faithful to us, 1) because He loves us unconditionally, and 2) because He cannot deny Himself (2 Timothy 2:13b)

Psalm 30:12 "...that my glory may sing your praise and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give thanks to you forever!"


Ya-ssas! (Hello)

This past year, I have been learning a deeper meaning of living as a "sent" people.  By this, I mean, mission work is not confined by taking trips to make a difference - it's about having a heart for where you are right now, and where you aren't.
As I have been striving to be an example of Christ and reflect God's love to the people around me where I have been called for 4 years of my life, in Auburn, I gained a new desire to serve Him overseas.  God has so graciously blessed me with an exciting opportunity to serve Him in the beautiful country of Greece this summer!  My purpose for this blog is to keep those of you reading informed and updated on how God is preparing the people in Greece for His kingdom.  I will be serving alongside 6 other interns through an organization called Mission to the World.  I am humbled in knowing God is not served by my hands as if He needed me, but that He wants to work through me (Acts 17:25).  

What We Will Be Doing In Greece

From May 23-July 30, I will be serving with 6 other interns from across the US.  We will be working with a church plant in Athens, primarily engaging in relational evangelism.  Our team will be working with the church congregation leading worship and helping with events, skits, and sports, leading a couple of outreach events for the youth, and participate in weekly youth meetings.  At the end of the summer, we will help run a youth camp in the city of Kalamos.  We will also be working with New Zoi (New Life), a ministry to prostitutes who have been trafficked into Greece from various places in Western Europe and northern Africa.  We will also be putting on festivals for the children of immigrants in Athens as well.  This is an outreach to the children and parents, where we will be showing them the love and grace of Christ and to show that the church is here to help them.

How You Can Serve Through Prayer

The people we will be working with need prayer for a few things. The youth, that they would take their faith seriously; that they would treasure the gift they have been given and that when they go to school and work, they would be a light shining in Athens for others to see! 
The young women we will work with through Nea Zoi (New Life) need prayer that their hearts would be open, that they would be softened and not closed off to me and the team, and that they would be encouraged and gain the strength they need to turn from prostitution to the gospel. The workers at New Zoi need prayer for safety as they work, and that their ministry would be fruitful! 
The immigrant’s we will be working with have physical needs, food and shelter, as well as spiritual needs. 
Most of the people who we will be working with will not be Christians, they may have been exposed to religion, but most not to the gospel. However, the youth group at the church, of course, are Christians for the most part.


I leave in 8 days and this could not be a more exciting time of my life!  I know the road will not be an easy one - we will be faced with some growing pains and mountains to cross - but it will be so worth it! And with God's promised presence and success, I know this journey will fill me, and many others, with a new love, joy, and purpose of living for my Savior.

"May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all." 2 Corinthians 13:14