Sunday, February 20, 2011

Mexico City re-cap... and now - Kalgoorlie + Coolgardie!

Hello from luscious Kalgoorlie! Our 1st week here's nearly up, and I'm happy to say the flies aren't nearly as bad as I'd thought...
To re-cap the last part of Mexico City outreach.....

Our last Saturday church sesh at Bellas Artes was incredible. In case I forgot to mention it previously, our team held informal 'church' sessions in a large park. We offered free art and English, with a Bible study afterwards. So the last Saturday we had in Mexico saw 9 people come to Jesus.
The last public painting we did in the Zocalo brought another 10 people into the Kingdom.

God gave us an exciting surprise on our last night in Mexico City – at our farewell 'do, Uni student and his sister gave their lives to God, after being witnesses to the whole 7 weeks the AES was in Mex. :)

So after a 2 day break to get over jetlag, the Transformation School and my team have joined forces for the last 3 weeks of outreach in regional W.A.

The 2 teams had a jolly 10+hour drive from Perth to Kalgoorlie, a country town north of Perth.
Our mission here is to serve and minister to the Aboriginals.
The ghost town of yester-year gold rushes, Coolgardie, is a half hour drive from our cabins in Kalgoorlie. On weekends we hold 'fun days' at the local recreation centre for the Aboriginal youth and kiddies; which include games and sports – most of the kids are crazy for basketball – and they're not shabby at the game, either!

We do BBQ's for the youth, then in the evenings the TS and AES hold a short service – great opportunities to goof off in testimonies and skits. After my staff Alex preached and gave an alter call last night, I think 6 kids came up.
I led 2 11-12 yr olds to Jesus – it was the coolest feeling! :)

During the week us YWAMer's are serving the schools – I'm looking forward to imparting practical truths to primary and highschool students. This will be my 1st time ministering to school kids – I'm praying all will go well! :)

We have plans to hold small groups for indigenous adults and parents of school kids. There's been a few suicides in this area recently, so the community's kind of closed of and hurting while they process these tragedies. But God wants healing transformation! And if He brought us here, you can be sure His plans have a good chance. :)

After 2 weeks here in Kalgoorlie, our combined teams will travel to Esperance, down south past Perth. Not quite sure what ministry plans are for Esperance atm.
Thanks for your prayers – Mexico City exceeded my expectations, and God answered many prayers in random ways. The Mexicans we met were just beautiful and I could see God's got many redeeming plans in place for that incredibly diverse nation. The Mexican churches have caught God's vision for good changes in their country, and they have a new passion to evangelise their own country.

I'm excited now to be back in Australia; excited to be investing into my own country. I've never worked with Aboriginals, but I've asked God for His heart for them, and He's done exactly that.
God has blessed the Australian Aborigines with particular gifts and traits; which I can see there are positive ways to direct those gifts. I'm praying for more wisdom in encouraging the youth to use their gifts and abilities positively for their future.
Love + blessings,

xx Cody xx

Friday, February 4, 2011

Here's to being broken, open & vulnerable!

Brilliantly beautiful, you can almost forget this glass shard has been shattered from where it belonged.

This morning, the AES said 'goodbye' to a couple I'll never forget - my staff Alex's parents. They're pastors in their home town of New Jersey, and a more powerful couple of God I've never met. :)
Joel and Alicia Adevai joined the AES for ministry to encourage us (and spoil us!) and were an injection of vitality and hilarity for the few days 'roughing' it with the AES here in Tepito.
God's used them in love to make me face a powerful truth, that were I to face & fight this giant I live with daily, I would actually enjoy life the way God intended. The giant I have is 'DENIAL'. 
Please don't misunderstand me while you read this entry; I'm not a whining, sobbing broken-hearted mess 24/7 whilst endevouring to be a good missionary. 
That would be pathetic. :)

I hope this isn't too jangled, but thoughts to God lately have kinda run like this...

I was expert at walking away from anything that was messy & painful.
"God...I appreciate all You do in my life; but it's not necessary to dig up wounds from the past, recent or ancient. If you live on this earth, you're gonna get hurt. Period. Parents, friends, strangers, whatever - it's life! You deal with it, forget about it, squash it down deep inside so you can focus on the present, and soon, it'll all be a distant memory.
 I feel fine now! I feel pleasantly detached & numb when life throws lemons. Mission achieved! So why reawaken memories I've worked so hard to bury? What's the point??"

God waits till I've calmed down, or replies immediately. Always with wisdom and deep compassion. Go figure.

"Daughter, you can't hide forever. Everything you work so hard to forget WILL one day come to the surface - in a time you'd rather it not. You were created to come to Me when you're in pain. If you deal with brokenness by yourself, there will always be parts missing - because only I am able to completely heal you. I am your Healer! But it's up to you - do You trust Me with you heart? Your pain? You're numb now - but believe Me, it's not all roses inside."  

Joel Adevai, Alex's pastor-Dad from New Jersey, USA, talked to our team before he left.

 "To be an effective evangelist, you need healing. Like the Samaritan women in John 4, you need to experience Jesus' healing before you can run off & excitedly tell the Good News. 'Coz people won't be moved unless they see the LOVE of Jesus in you." 

The reality I see now is, that no matter what, people WILL hurt you. Whether you protect and wall up your heart or not. 

So, for me, being Miss Independent actually stems from rejection and abandonment. Like millions of women in the world. But it's not a healthy foundation for independence. Because anything not built on Jesus, will certainly one day fall.
I'm still figuring out how healing'll look for me. And there's no need to have it all together + answers.
I'm human, and Jesus is enough for me.
If we let Him, God brings beauty & wholeness from what cripples us.
Love is choosing to love & getting hurt; because no matter what, God's always there to heal and protect. 
I have a Dad who's never too busy for me, and who's arms are permanently open. 
Good to know. :)