Friday, August 24, 2012

boy was i wrong. on being naive enough to say "here i am use me..."

14 days ago...i spent my first year anniversary in hawaii.  that day i had to bring my baby sis to the airport and say goodbye to her. i uttered goodbye to my friends and family in LA last august 10 2011 and august 12, 2012, i had to say those words that bring pain to my heart once again. the rest of the day i sat in a classroom full of (almost) young college age students who were big dreamers and had desires to change the world. i sat in the class looking at each of them...wondering if they knew the weight of the words that came out of their mouths when they uttered the words "GOD USE ME...ANYWHERE I WILL GO FOR YOU...ANYTHING I WILL DO".

i remembered saying that when i was about 20 when i first met my Savior. my heart was on fire, my passion was bigger than life and i believed God could use me for anything and i was ready to change the world for him. i mean why wouldn't we do it together? i had a strong testimony. i was sexually and physically abused as a child, got into sex, drugs and rock and roll and was the poster rebel child... and after an encounter with Him, i had a radical conversion... the kind that saul/paul had. i thought that testimony was enough to be the foundation of Him using me....after all i had already been through hell and back in my teenage years. after that, i thought i was invisible...i had a big dream for God and i thought God was going to shield me from potential heartaches that could happen. I thought those words wouldn't come with a price.


God wanted to use me alright, but the 12 years of preparation to get to where I am was beyond what any classroom setting could give me. He literally took me through the school of hard-knocks and worked intensely in my heart squeezing out self-sufficiency, pride, idolatry, hate, anger, pride and all the other sins that i cradled and worshiped in my heart for so long.

10-12 years of tears and seeing my prayers die. not receiving any answers to the question "why". instead one heart ache after another happened. all this while serving God and remaining to be faithful to Him as best as i could.
  • seeing my sister fall out of love for God and walk in a rebellious lifestyle that continues to hurt my heart till today
  • seeing my parents battle out an ugly divorce while the whole church, friends and me and my siblings watched. 
  • dealing with adultery in the family and learning to forgive
  • learning to forgive my abusers and the ones who tolerated it, and forgive them wholeheartedly, even when it was hard.
  • teaching my son everyday to forgive his father who abandoned him the day he found out i was pregnant 
  • learning to let go and not make sense of it all when all i had was $10 in my bank and me and my son were sleeping on sleeping bags/couches of friends coz we had no place of our own.
  • seeing the ministry/church that i was part of FALL apart big time. and seeing the church/ministry slowly rise back up from the ashes that burned and hurt so many people..and having to go through the process of healing with friends and leaders while watching people leave the church and turn their backs on God
  • fighting to homeschool my son as a single mom while working and doing whatever i could to bring food to the table  and still serving at church and trying to change the world.
and after all that....God asked me to leave my family and friends to move 2500 miles away to a place where everyone was a complete stranger. He asked me to move to hawaii as a missionary, where i knew no one, so that when He would open doors, everyone, including I, would see and know that it isn't by anybody's doing but God. and open doors He did. but even the journey here for the past year proved to be one of the most beautiful times in my life but also one of the most painful times. 

i was blessed with wonderful and beautiful marriage and a loving husband. but we also experienced a church fall out with burned friendships. i celebrated my son finally having a father who loved and accepted him. but we also had in-law issues as well as battling with homesickness, loneliness and intense spiritual warfare. we had wonderful friends who paid for our beautiful LA wedding but we also lost half of my ministry partnership in a year and we had to honorably explain to my ministry partners what happened and why we left the church. i had to learn to let go of relationships and learn to embrace new friendships. i learned to forgive and trust but also be wiser about who to build with. i learned to allow my heart to be hurt and still show grace. our dog's life was saved. we had also desired to be part of one of the most beautiful churches we have ever encountered....only for God to ask us to go back to the flock where John and I belonged...the ministry that has trained me, launched me and been my spiritual family for the past 12 years. LOTS OF CURVE BALLS THROWN OUR WAY. 

i've been here in hawaii as a missionary for a year and 14 days now and even through all that...and everything i went through these past 12 years...i will still continue to say "GOD USE ME...ANYWHERE I WILL GO FOR YOU...ANYTHING I WILL DO". of course, i'm not as naive as i once used to be...this time...i proceed with much wisdom and a slight bit of caution before saying yes to Him ;) but i decided i would rather continue to have big faith in my God and go through the rough times with Him than be jaded. because my God has been so-so-so very good to me that my heart cannot afford to be jaded or poisoned by unbelief or bitterness. 

and as faithful as ever...even these past few months since quitting my job last May, God has opened doors that i would have never been able to open myself. from meeting and building relationships with leaders and pastors  of various churches, ministries and businesses; to john getting offers from churches who want to hire him as a worship pastor and let him grow in his gift of music and leadership; to me having a choices of churches to intern for and great leaders to work with; to having ministry partners and friends who still continue to believe in the dream God has put in my heart, even through the messy; to our whole family making new friends here in these islands, some who who i know for sure are going to be my life long friends and our "ohana" here in hawaii....

GOD HAS BEEN FAITHFUL TO OPEN DOORS like He said He would. and with those doors come the realization of dreams... you know that "big dream" i mentioned in the first paragraph...the one that has been growing in me for years now!?!?! well....10 years after carrying that baby... i feel like a damn elephant already...i know this past year was a season of laboring something in the supernatural...and i can't wait to see what God is bringing forth for this  NEW season in my family's life.