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Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Questioning and Confirmation

As I've mentioned before, I'm really excited about my summer missions trip to Uganda with Empower A Child, but (unfortunately) the human mind is accustom to doubt. . .this is a big decision! I've been praying for a confidence that this is what He wants, not just what I want.

This past week, God definitely answered prayer! (Does He ever disappoint?) This Sunday, our youth group leader announced that we would be helping the members of our church with different tasks for donation; which would all be going to fund my trip. Wait! What? I expected to hear groans ("We have to do work for nothing?") But, instead, everyone looked really excited- they are glad to help with my trip :)

Last night something out of the ordinary happened: I got an order through Etsy!! My second order made to a stranger :) I was so happy! Then this morning. . .I was woken up by two very excited parents- I had another order from Etsy. What? Woo Hoo! It was for one of my more expensive items- a cuff I had been wanting to sell for quite some time!

Now I'm beginning to realize that "God WILL provide"

It's not just a saying, it's reality!

My First Home Ashewelry Party. . .

I've heard that home jewelry parties are a great way to get the word out about your business. I've also heard that they are pretty successful financially- which made it a perfect way to raise money for my trip to Uganda this summer.

I decided to have the first (of many- hopefully) @ my house- come and go. So, after getting the word out through FB, Twitter, and mostly word of mouth, many people were excited! So, we cleaned house, set up, I made a basket for a silent auction, made a "Ring Stack Station", and set out the Christmas cookies.

My expectations seemed to exceed the results. I thought there would be several sitting around our table sharing conversation and hot cider, a room full of friends, and (of course) lots of orders. Within the first ten minutes I had two customers show up!! Both of whom made orders- I was so excited! But...these two turned out to be my only customers all night. I spent the next three hours waiting for customers who had RSVP ed...but never showed up! Being optimistic though, the two orders I had that night was better than not having any orders and not having a party!

After seeing a lot of friends and neighbors the following day, I found that a lot had forgotten! BUT from that many made orders with me- by the end of the week, about 6% of my trip is funded :) it's a start!

A New Purpose for Ashewelry

A lot of questions have been enveloping my thoughts lately- as you can imagine. There are many choices that one makes in a day, in a lifetime...but I've decided that I should take mine one at a time.

Many, if not all followers of Christ wonder about God's Will for their lives, but I've heard once that about 97% of God's Will is written. (I'll bet you know what's coming next!) It is in His Word. As Luke 16:10 says: ""Whoever can be trusted with very little can also be trusted with much, and whoever is dishonest with very little will also be dishonest with much." at this moment, we know a portion of God's plan for our lives- that we follow His commandments. If we can't do these things. . .how can we expect Him to reveal more to us? If we can't follow His original instructions, there may be a reason that He isn't revealing more to us.

With this in mind, it's a lot easier not worrying about what I should do next, because I am doing what I should at this moment. Although. . .I still wondered about which missions trip to go to this summer (or if I should go on one at all!) Many opportunities have come up- and I've seeked guidance from God and loved ones around me ((Proverbs 2:6-9 , Proverbs 20:18)) and God has gently shut the door on each one. Through each experience, I've become more sensitive to His leading.

Through all this, I was reminded of what Elizabeth Elliot said about God's Will. "The Shepard is much more interested in making sure that the sheep get to where they belong than how the sheep are in getting there." I've talked to mom about this, and she mentioned that in Sunday school they discussed that very thing. We miss a lot of opportunities because of doubt. We want and audible voice and thunder! But some decisions require stepping out in faith! If the choice you're about to make is in accordance to the Bible and your concience, and after humble prayer your view doesn't change, then go ahead and act. If it's not what God wants, He will make it clear. He will shut the door someway. Even if the result is not what you expected, God was teaching you something!

I narrowed down what type of trip I want. . . and I think I've got one! :)

Empower A Child is an organization that brings volunteers to countries throughout the world to help in a variety of outreaches. Including an orphanage, juvenilles home, drama ministry, sports ministry, a childrens hospital, and VBS. I wanted a range of outreaches so I could make a better (career/life) decision based on experience. Otherwise, I will most likely be a liguistic translator (writing the Bible in a group's language) or a "Church planter" (developing a church where Christ is unknown). I would be able to choose when I go, and how long I stay. I'm also taking this trip with a close friend of mine, so we can share the experience.

The trip we've chosen is to Uganda. I'm still in the information inquiring phase, just past the informing my parents phase :) they understand. . .but mom still wants me to stay in-state (or in-country!)

~Although, I don't have to stop making jewelry! Ashewelry will be a great help in fundraising money for this (fairly costly) trip!~