Rude Awakening

Rude Awakening:

“The occurrence of being made to face an unpleasant fact.”

“If you have a rude awakening, you have a severe shock when you discover the truth of a situation.” (Dictionary.com and Free Dictionary.)

“You’re in for a rude awakening Chelsea.” I was caught completely off guard the first time I heard this sentence nearly audibly. It was March of this year. I was hoping, packing and praying for the opportunity to come here to YWAM Kona. I had never before heard such an abrupt statement that made me question whether it was God or not. So naturally, I disregarded the sentence I heard and continued on in my fundraising.

As the days and the weeks went by I continued to hear this sentence, “You’re in for a rude awakening Chelsea.” In all honesty I questioned if this thought, this statement, was coming from the enemy. Thankfully it was not. Fast forward to my plane ride here to YWAM Kona April 6th. I was napping on the plane, my head in my arms, rested on the tray pulled down behind the seat in front of me. Suddenly, I was woken up. I was woken up by the same statement but this time it came with more detail, more insight. I have never heard the audible voice of God but this experience on my plane ride to Kona was sincerely the closest thing to audibly hearing Him that I have ever experienced. I was awoken as I heard; “You’re in for a rude awakening Chelsea. I am going to break you down and build you back up into the woman you never thought you could become.” My immediate response : “Woah, oh no.” Lol.  It was both exciting to hear almost audibly and so directly from God, yet also I was struck deeply by the fear of the Lord. For two reasons. For one; that He would give me the honor to hear from Him so clearly and directly and secondly; I trembled with the reality and curiosity of what being broken down would look like.

Its been an amazing and life changing experience here at YWAM Kona. Each week of class is filled with incredible, admirable and seasoned saints. All of who teach us from their own experiences of walking with Jesus in such a steadfast, self sacrificial way. I began to hear more and more frequently of the short and long-term missionary endeavors of these teachers I had the opportunity to glean from. That’s when I heard it again, the sentence, the heads up from Jesus. This time with the final portion added to it. “You’re in for a rude awakening Chelsea. I am going to break you down and build you back up into the woman you never thought you could become, and take you to places you never thought you could go.

A few weeks ago in speaking with one of my school leaders/ outreach leaders I shared this word from the Lord and it sparked their curiosity as to what the rude awakening looked like. I wasn’t sure what it meant quite yet so I pondered this for a few days, maybe a week.

Quick reminder: Rude Awakening as described in Dictionary.com “An occurrence of being made to face an unpleasant fact.”

Last week an incredible missionary of 20 years came and shared countless stories of the doors God opened for her to be used in many countries and amongst many lost, forgotten, hurting, broken, and unreached people. I cried each class session as my eyes were opened to the NUMBERS of sex slaves, both adult and children. The Numbers of orphans because of the Numbers of people victim to being massacred by HIV. The Numbers of child soldiers. The Numbers of people who have never heard the name of Jesus. And many more, many, many more NUMBERS. This was my RUDE AWAKENING.

One very common response to the injustices in this world is to feel overwhelmed with the thought of, “But what can I do? I am only 1 person.” Let me help you by bringing to remembrance our Lords sweet ministry to people during His time on earth. He being one person often ministered to one person. Not always but for a large sum of His time here. Ex: John Ch.4 Jesus stopped on His journey to Galilee He stopped in Samaria to minister to one Samaritan woman. There are many other testimonies in the bible of God reaching out to one soul at a time. In the same way may we take our time to reach the one God has set in front of us. One child at an orphanage, one prostitute on the street, one person on the way to work, one co-worker at work, one family member at home, one person at school or all of the above. Be led by Him daily and don’t discount your ministry to the one. God died to save that one. Who knows, they could be the next Billy Graham. We can change the world and end these injustices by taking our time and taking initiative to love just one person at a time. Of this I am convinced.

Initially when I heard this word from God I was afraid but now I see clearly. The rude awakening I am currently experiencing is taking on the heart of God and being willing to let Him break my heart for what breaks His. He is also giving me His eyes. He’s breaking me down and my finite shallow perspective of life. He’s ruining me with His vast, unconditional love for the nations and for every single soul. He is building me back up into a woman who is resistant to apathy and will no longer settle for plan b. I want plan A. I am ready and willing to go wherever He leads me, (Psalm 23). Whether its back home to Ca, back to Kona or to the ends of the earth. In following His leading I refuse to sit back and do nothing about these injustices. It begins and ends with prayer. Beyond traveling somewhere physically I am even more committed to no longer ignoring the reality of the lost, hurting, dyeing, needy and unreached. I will daily look to Jesus in how to pray for these injustices in the world and be led by His Spirit as I minister to the one.

In February this year during a quiet time with Jesus. God spoke to me as I was reading proverb 31. As I read through Proverb 31:8-9 God said “This is your destiny Chelsea.” I wrote “My Destiny” next to those two verses in my bible and in excitement I wondered what that meant. Nearly 4 weeks ago, early May. Two school leaders I had never met prior prayed over me and prophesied these verses over me (Proverb.31:8-9) and said these are life verses from God and that God has given me a heart for injustices. I laughed with joy and began to explain that this was confirmation to God already giving me these verses months ago. God is so good and He does speak.

Proverb 31:8-9 “Open your mouth for the speechless, In the cause of all who are appointed to die. Open your mouth, judge righteously, And plead the cause of the poor and needy.”

May God continue to break all of our hearts for what breaks His. May stir in us a Spirit willing to stand up for the speechless and ready to end the injustices in the world.

Jeremiah 18:3-4  “Then I went down to the potter’s house, and there he was, making something at the wheel. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter; so he made it again into another vessel, as it seemed good to the potter to make.”

May we become moldable in the hands of God our potter. As He reshapes us children of God into vessels ready to do His will.

May God break our hearts for what breaks His. May He build us up into men and women of action rather than apathy.

 

 

Stand Still

“And Moses said to the people, ‘Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the LORD, which He will accomplish for you today…’.” Exodus 14:13

The past few years have been the hardest years of my life. I went through the start and the end of a marriage. For anyone who can relate, you know the depth of the pain of such an experience. Maybe you have heard of the analogy of two paper hearts in regards to marriage. Picture two paper hearts, now picture them glued together. So, these two paper hearts become one new heart. Now picture trying to separate the one heart that’s been formed into two separate paper hearts once more. It’s impossible.

Therefore, I am grateful for serving a God who does the impossible. The one new heart, my ex-husband and I became has become two separate hearts once again. Initially, I was a fragmented, torn up, disillusioned and depressed paper heart. But I am amazed and blessed to say that my God has done the impossible. My God has made me whole again.

Last year, as I painfully ventured through the valley of the “Divorce Process” I cried out to God in pleas of desperation, begging Him for direction. It was then, I heard Him reply with a question, “Chelsea if you could do anything at all next, what would it be?” My immediate response was, “God I don’t know because I know I should really go back to school, get a career, etc..etc…”. Again God brings to life a question in my heart, “Chelsea, if you could do anything at all, with no bounds and no financial restrictions, what would it be?” My response this time, “YWAM.”

In faith I began to seek counsel, pray and apply to come to YWAM. YWAM Kona specifically had been on my mind off and on since 2012. It was brought up at a Circuit Riders conference, at the International House of Prayer in Kansas City Missouri. Gods timing is perfect I am living proof of that. YWAM stands for Youth With a Mission. It is a missions training organization with bases all over the world. They each include a 2-3 month lecture/training phase then finish off with 2-3 months of outreach in a foreign country. I got accepted to YWAM Kona in December last year with not a dime towards the funds to get me there. In faith I began to fundraise through yard sales, support letters, emails and working lots. Comes the end of December I had only $1,000 towards the $10,000 I needed.

Weeks go by and the amount I needed seemed steeper than ever before. In the midst of anxiety, worry and doubt concerning fundraising I hear a still small voice; “Chelsea stand still and you will see the salvation of the LORD.” Of course I clung to unbelief and quickly brushed this thought right off my shoulder. As the days went by, as I cried out to God and wrestled with the idea and reality of the financial practicalities of YWAM I heard over and over, “Chelsea, stand still, and you will see the salvation of the LORD.” I was hesitant to share this with my closest friends. I remained unsure if it was a word from God or not.

A few more weeks go by. I grow in confidence concerning my call to come to YWAM Kona. Confidence in Gods leading was built through a series of wise, Godly counsel, scriptures from the Word of God, provision, peace and personal nudges from the Holy Spirit. On a rather peace filled day of surety in Gods leading, a dear friend in Christ purchases my plane ticket to YWAM Kona for April 2017. She stepped out in faith and tremendous generosity as she stands in agreement that this is Gods leading in my life. Not to mention that on this February afternoon I still had the standing raised amount of $1,000 towards my YWAM journey. In utter joy and gratitude I reflected that evening on Gods goodness and radical provision that played out hours prior. Then, in my silly prone to doubt heart I began to wrestle with God again. I gave Jesus, the God of the universe, a heads up that I still was in dire need of much finances towards YWAM and let Him know that I needed them by April 1st. LOL. In an instance I heard that beautiful, comforting, steadfast sentence, “Chelsea stand still, and you will see the Salvation of the LORD.” Believe it or not I still doubted this word to be from God, though it arose in my heart and calmed waves of anxiety for over a month now.

A few hours passed and I began to listen to a sermon as I nodded off to bed, (Shout out to Pastor John Schaeffer! You’re a dope teacher!). The pastor then says, “Right before God parts the Red Sea, Moses turns to the children of Israel and says, “Stand Still, and you will see the Salvation of the LORD.” Exodus 14:13.” Like any sane completely shocked, speechless and undone human, I jumped out of my bed, ripped the headphones out of my ears and began to pace back and forth as I try, and fail, to converse with God with a load of gasps, “What?!” ‘s, and endless circles of “It’s a Verse?!!” cry outs. Yes, the whole time God was speaking that sentence to me I did not know whatsoever that it was indeed a bible verse!!! The red sea represented the impossible amount of finances I need and Gods parting it long ago, was Gods promise to me, that He would provide.

This outrageous moment became the foundational confirming factor as I journeyed on in my YWAM excursion. I continued to work hard and attempt to fundraise but through some reoccurring wise counsel I knew, I knew that I knew that I should attempt to fundraise via direct phone calls. It was an internal battle for weeks. Why? Because who wants to call someone and ask for money? No one. (Unless you’re a pretend bill collector scamming people. LOL.) This is when God sent some clean rebukes my way through various friendships. If I am unwilling to ask someone to partner with me financially then I literally could be a part in withholding an eternal blessing from them. When someone partners financially with a missionary, they too are a part of the seeds planted and harvest of souls that are reaped on the missions field. So, I made my first phone call. This gentleman from church answers his phone cheerfully. In fear, I begin to explain that this was my first fundraiser call ever. To my surprise he begins to encourage me, then prays for me, then says he would love to partner with me and would pray about how much to give.

After a couple weeks and a few more phone calls and a bunch more rounds of encouragements from the verse Exodus 14:13, Sunday arrives. I get to church Sunday April 2nd, 4 days before heading here to YWAM Kona. And, well I’m still beside myself even now, typing this out, the gentlemen from my very first phone call hands me a check. The check was for $4,400.00. Minutes later I received an envelope of cash for $500.00. It doesn’t end there. That evening at my going away dinner I received another couple checks and envelopes of cash. 4 days before my arrival this Sunday evening I received over $6,000. God remained faithful to His promise to me. God parted the Red Sea. God provided for me to come here, to YWAM Kona!!!!