Tune my heart to sing Thy grace

Come Thou Fount

Come thou fount of every blessing
Tune my heart to sing Thy grace
Streams of mercy never ceasing
Call for songs of loudest praise

Teach me some melodious sonnet
Sung by flaming tongues above
I’ll praise the Mount I’m fixed upon it
Mount of Thy redeeming love

Here I raise my Ebenezer
Hither by Thy help I come
And I hope by Thy good pleasure
Safely to arrive at home

Jesus, sought me when a stranger
Wandering from the fold of God
He, to rescue me from danger
Interposed His precious blood

Ode to grace, how great a debtor
Daily I’m constrained to be
And let Thy goodness like a fetter
Bind my wandering heart to Thee

Prone to wander, Lord, I feel it
Prone to leave the God I love
Here’s my heart, Lord, take and seal it
Seal it for Thy courts above

Here’s my heart, Lord, take and seal it
Seal it for Thy courts above

His Power in My Weakness

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. – 1 Corinthians 12:9-10

I look at the lives of my Christian friends and see incredible people filled with joy and love. Men and women of God who are so filled with the Spirit of God that it overflows into everything they do. When I see God working through them in wonderful and amazing ways I’m overjoyed they are experiencing God so fully. However, sometimes I’m discouraged that I don’t always feel the way everyone else seems to.

Instead of always feeling blessed by God, I just feel broken. Despite knowing in my head that through Christ I am redeemed, I sometimes feel hopeless instead of hopeful. I’m just as sinful and broken as I’ve ever been. How can I really be a child of God who walks in the light if everything in my life is such a mess?

I read 1 John 1:6-7 and feel dismayed. I know that I’m often not walking in the light. So I’m a liar who doesn’t live out the truth or fellowship with God? How can I feel anything but miserable?

Fortunately, the chapter does not end there. It goes on in verse 8 and 9 to say that anyone who claims to be without sin deceives himself and if we confess our sins God is faithful; he forgives and purifies us. I can still have joy, because it is in my weakness, when I feel most broken, God shows his power. He shows His power to forgive even the worst parts of me and His power to make me new. I rejoice because God not only forgives me, but is also turning me into something beautiful.

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The Best and the Worst of Paris Summer Project

 The Worst:

1. Not knowing the language was difficult. Most students spoke English, but in the suburbs, where we lived, most people only spoke French. The language barrier made it very hard to communicate and understand, which was very overwhelming, especially at the beginning.

2. Talking to students every day was exhausting. 2 Corinthians 1:8-9 and 2 Corinthians 12:9 are two verses that I really identified with while I was there.238

                For we do not want you to be unaware, brothers, of the affliction we experienced in Asia. For we were so utterly burdened beyond our strength that we despaired of life itself.  Indeed, we felt that we had received the sentence of death. But that was to make us rely not on ourselves but on God who raises the dead. 2 Corinthians 1:8-9

                But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. 2 Corinthians 12:9

3. Being away from family, friends, and a familiar environment was tough. Living in a foreign country for six weeks without much communication with people back home was a challenge.

4. France is very spiritually dark and is a difficult place to do ministry.

 

The Best:

1. France is BEAUTIFUL. Pictures don’t even do it justice; it’s one of the prettiest places I’ve ever been.

2. Getting to know the 19 other people on the trip and spending time with them was a blast!

3. French students were VERY nice and polite. Meeting and getting to know them was a lot of fun.

0564. I got to learn SO much about France and French culture. There many things I learned from French students I would not have been able to learn from a book.

5. French students are very open about their beliefs and were usually very willing to tell us what they believe about God.

6. Being part of the awesome things God is doing in France was such a blessing! While we were there our team had 1080 spiritual conversations, 495 gospel conversations, and we saw 5 people accept Christ. I am so thankful God allowed me to part of that!

And I, when I came to you, brothers, did not come proclaiming to you the testimony of God with lofty speech or wisdom. For I decided to know nothing among you except Jesus Christ and him crucified. And I was with you in weakness and in fear and much trembling, and my speech and my message were not in plausible words of wisdom, but in demonstration of the Spirit and of power, so that your faith might not rest in the wisdom of men but in the power of God. Corinthians 2:1-5

Thank You

“Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved.How, then, can they call on the one they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the one of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to them? And how can anyone preach unless they are sent? As it is written: ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!'” Romans 10:13-15

 Last week in bible study we learned what the bible has to say about sending. We read this verse, and it made me very grateful for everyone who supported me either prayfully or financially. I would not be able to be here sharing the gospel with French students without the people who were willing to send me.

So, if you supported me, thank you again! I am so grateful!

paris-aerial-view-eiffel-tower

I thank my God every time I remember you. In all my prayers for all of you, I always pray with joy because of your partnership in the gospel from the first day until now Philippians 1:3-5

 

God’s Heart and My Heart

In France our bible study is learning about God’s heart for the world and His desire for the knowledge of His glory to spread over the whole earth. In the beginning God created people and commanded them to be fruitful and multiply. He wanted to fill the world with people whom He loved and who loved Him and brought Him glory. However, man’s relationship with God was broken at the fall and God’s perfect plan for the world was distorted.

In spite of this, God still loved the world. In Genesis 12 He promises Abraham that He would bless the nations through him. This blessing eventually resulted in Jesus who came to bring forgiveness and reconcile us to God. When Jesus came he commanded his followers to “make disciples of all nations” (Matthew 28:19). Jesus reveals here that God’s heart for the world hasn’t changed. He still wants everyone to know and glorify Him. Furthermore, Jesus says not only that we should go to the nations, but also that the gospel will reach all the nations (Matthew 24:14). Because God desires for every nation to hear the good news, the good news will be brought to every nation.

In Revelation it says that at the end there will be people “from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb” (Revelation 7:9). However, currently 1/3 of the world’s population lives in unreached people groups (people groups where there are less than 2% native believers). Despite God desires for all the nations to know and love Him, right now 85-95% of missionaries serve in reached areas. Even though people from all nations will one day stand before the throne, at this time only 5.4% of money given to mission is used for foreign missions and only 0.37% of that 5.4% is used to reach the unreached.

When I learned these statistics, I realized that my actions and thoughts demonstrate that my heart does not align with God’s heart when it comes to reaching the nations. The people of the world who don’t know God are so important to Him, but I rarely even think about them. Reaching those who don’t know God and having them come to know and love Him is God’s priority and deepest desire. Even though I am currently serving in an unreached country, when I look at the way I live my life and the things that I pray about, it’s clear that I don’t have the same desire as God to reach the nations. I want to have the same heart that God does for the nations. I’m praying that God will give me a better understanding of His heart,  transform my desires into His own, and help me make it my priority to reach the unreached by praying for laborers, giving generously, and going if asked.

                After this I looked, and there before me was a great multitude that no one could count, from every nation, tribe, people and language, standing before the throne and before the Lamb. They were wearing white robes and were holding palm branches in their hands. And they cried out in a loud voice: “Salvation belongs to our God, who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb.”  Revelation 7:9-10

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