Sunday, January 31, 2010

Pray for Cusco

I am not sure how much of the news in Cusco has reached England, but I thought I would bring it to your attention and ask you for prayer. My friend sent out a good brief description of whats happening, so I am going to use that (Just to say, I am not in Cusco):

The area around Cuzco and Macchu Picchu in Peru has been hit badly by rain, floods and mud slides during this week. 
Thankfully there have been very few fatalities, but the current guess is that 10,000 people have lost their homes. Macchu Picchu is a major tourist attraction in South America- google it if you don’t know what I’m talking about! At the moment it is completely cut off from everything, apart from by helicopter. Over 2000 tourists have been stranded there since Monday, and there are still about 800 there now that need helicoptering out. It is estimated that it will take 1 month to get the road and rail links to Cuzco and Macchu Picchu repaired. In the meantime, these places are somewhat cut off, apart from by air. Now is summer in Peru, and so key tourist time. The loss of the income from tourism for this month will be huge. Food and water are available, but more expensive than normal, and in fairly short supply.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

A Glance at Galatians Pt 6

Pt 6 :: I no longer live

This is an amazing verse:
I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.

There is so much to unpack from these verses. But one I want to focus on is the bit where it says "I no longer live". Ponder this for a bit. What does this mean for you to no longer live? It doesn´t mean you have physically died. But it does mean your life has changed and has been put to death. I think about this concept of "I no longer live" and why I don´t live anymore? because "I have been crucified with Christ". My life is no longer about me, I am no longer Queen of the life of Cat. It means that my desires, hopes and dreams and character and all the old ways of how I lived have been Crucified with Christ. Think of this freedom!! no longer are we slaves to ourselves and our fleeting desires, or to the world that pumps into our heads ideas of the perfect life. We are now free in Jesus Christ. Which means a change of living and thinking.

I look back on my day and I think - how many times have I thought of "me" of my desires, of my wants and of my needs. The world I live is about me and there is problem here, there is a conflict with living like this and living in Christ. I can´t live like this and shine Jesus, the only person I will be showing is my sinful self. If I no longer live, then the world that revolves around me needs to be turned inside out to a world that is centered on Christ. I know this isnt something I can do by myself but I can keep looking at Jesus, I can keep looking at the cross and pray the God would remind me of who I am living for. I can look at the cross and say - I have died there with Christ, this is not who I am anymore.  Like this:

  • When I think of complaining about my life because its not going my way.... I can look at the cross.
  • When I think of not helping someone because I am too busy...I can look at the Cross
  • When I think the temptation looks good and I want to sin... I can look at the cross
  • When I think of not praying or reading my bible... I can look at the cross
  • When I can´t be bothered to love some... I can look to the cross
  • When I am too busy to talk to someone... I can look to the cross.

As a Christian I live a new life that doesnt revolve around me and my dreams.But its about the church and serving the church, its about my non Christian neighbour and helping at all times of the night, its about the student that I meet up with for a bible study, its about washing up, its about loving others, its about the homeless man on the street, its about the christian struggling in her faith, its about encouraging others, washing their feet, eating food with people,sharing the Gospel. Its about Jesus and what he wants with my life. Its not about my career, my promotion, my talk, my blog, my hunger, my "me" time, my shower, the way I think things should be run. Sometimes all of these things are to be crucified, we are to suffer our comfort for others. 
You hate hearing those words? They are hard. But think... What does it mean for you not to get your own way? for you to be crucified in Christ? For you to no longer live?

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Translate to Spanish

So I found a really cool little gadget that allows you to read my blog in Spanish! This came about after chatting with a student in Peru and he was telling me that you can translate your blog as he has one on his... and I found it. You can see it on the right here. Enjoy :) 

Friday, January 08, 2010

Not made for Goodbyes

Once again I am having to say goodbye to people and in all honesty I don´t like it. It makes me think more so that we are eternal creatures not made for saying goodbye, yet we are in a world where relationships break down and people have to move on. It also makes me realise that as a Christian I want to spend my life cultivating relationships, seeing them mature and pouring love into them with Christ at the center - I wonder how thats possible if I move around so much? Thats the problem with short term, you stay and make relationships only to leave after a short amount of time - which is hard when you are living in a culture that lives and highly values relationships.

I am convicted that mission is about long term investment, whether thats as a teacher in school in England or a builder in Peru or an evangelist or pastor in India. I don´t think the proffesion matters, we are all missionaries and our job is a means of reaching others with the Gospel and building relationships while glorifying Christ. How is it possible to do this if we move from one place to another? Of course there is a time to move, but I wonder that maybe we move because its more about our career prospects than perhaps obeying God. Would it be so bad to stay and invest more time in the people around you?

But one thing is that it makes me look towards eternity with Christ. Because I know that through Jesus Christ everything is united and the body of Christ is together. There is no seperation, relationships are bound by the eternal love of Christ.

Saying all this, I know I have to leave Arequipa and although its a huge adventure, it is still very sad to leave those that I have come to love and have shared my life with. So I am looking forward to eternity where we can share everything and be with Jesus!!!

Monday, January 04, 2010

What is your treasure?

I have another brilliant quote from the Tim Chester book - "The ordinary Hero" that just caught my attention and I want you to read it and be challenged by what he is saying -

"Why don´t we live below the average income and give the rest to the poor? Why don´t we move into needy neighbourhoods? why don´t we open our homes to hurting people? Why don´t we work four days a week to create more time for mission? Why don´t we take low paid jobs to serve the community? We have some very sophisticated reasons. I know because I use them. But most of the time, it comes down to this: our treasure is earthly treasure and our security is earthly security"
This has really made me think what my treasure is and whether I am living for earthly treasure or heavenly treasure? What excuses am I making now so I can live a comfortable life rather then suffering and sacrificing what I want for the sake of others and for heavenly treasure.

Saturday, January 02, 2010

2009 Review

Happy New Year! I can´t believe that its 2010...

Normally I do a month by month review, but this time I am going to do some highlights of 2009! These are my highlights:

  • Doing Relay and learning so much over those 10 months - also making amazing friends.
  • Having a mission week in Poland
  • Leading a student to Christ
  • Seeing many students in Exeter become Christians
  • Marjons Mission week
  • Team days with the SW
  • 121s with students - coffee and the bible open
  • Oxford International Outreach
  • God providing a way to Peru
  • Living in Peru
  • 2 years with Tim
  • Going to Chile
  • Seeing Lake Titikaka
  • Having Christmas in Peru
  • Camping on the beach in Peru for New Years
There were obviously hard times this year too, but I think they are an example of God showing me more of Him. An extreme struggle yet also a joy was obeying God to go to Peru, although I knew He was calling me there, there was also great times of wrestling in prayer as to whether this was right, whether leaving the ones I loved behind for 10 months was right. But God was faithful and provided a way especially when everyone was panicking because nothing was settled or known about my placement until a month before going. Again God was faithful. His patience is surely remarkable and the good times that have been had were all because of His Grace. Roll on 2010!