"The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have life and have it abundantly." ~Matthew 10:10
It's about a halfway point of our outreach and I think everyone has hit a rough spot at some time in the last week. Praise God for my team! As one of us gets these feelings, another will be there to hold you up and encourage you, reminding you that, "We did not fly halfway around the world to be tired." We came here to be God's hands and feet to these women, and surely His strength will move the body. We came to work at this ministry to break ground in an area of red light bars that have most likely never heard about Christ, are stuck by their circumstances, hopeless, and who long for a pure and loving relationship that doesn't leave them with a nasty hangover and guilt the next morning. So while it's hard for us, we should be joyful because we've already been promised victory through Christ in these places.
As I led the bible study this morning on Romans 5:1-5, God led me to the hope and confidence we have in His Name. The passage goes as such:
"Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.”
I am Justified to be doing this ministry by my faith and have Peace in it.
I Stand in His Grace and Rejoice in the Hope of His Glory being revealed to this city, people, and nation.
I can rejoice also in the suffering, the exhaustion, the tests and trials, and the discipline I have faced here. And I can do that because of Hope. “
My hope for change will not put me to shame. I can say with confidence and full expectation, “that bar will be a coffee shop, that one an art gallery of ocean scenes, this bar will be a children’s day care, and those 4 on the corner over there - will be a global community center.” The world tells me that that it is impossible and foolish to really think that all of will come true- but my hope and belief that “if you have faith and do not doubt, you will not only do what has been done to the fig tree, but even if you say to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ it will happen” [matt 21:21] So then I can declare the change of this island from being a sex tourism industry, to being a place for families to come and experience the beauty of Thailand together.
I know this all to be true and can walk in such because God's love filters through my heart, as the Spirit dwells within.
His heart and mine are becoming more and more entwined and this is my prayer. That I continue to give up my life every moment, that the Holy Spirit's inhabitance in me takes the place of my heart, that His love becomes my blood, that with each breath I inhale His sweet presence, and that with every second I be even more so aware of He that is In me.
"Peace be to the brothers [and sisters], and love with faith, from God the Father and the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace be with all who love our Lord Jesus Christ with love incorruptible." Ephesians 6:23