broken pieces for glory…a third year praying into marriage on mission

Friday, October 3

When Kevin and I were dating, and then on into our marriage, we talked a lot (and still talk) about our heart and vision in our relationship. Where we landed, is that we wanted our marriage to be more than just about us. More specifically, we wanted it to be something that was radiant of the glory of God. Truly, we are just two completely broken people who, like the rest of the world, like being about "us". "Us" is easy because I mean, when do we not like to be all about ourselves?  But we didn't want that. In fact, we wanted to fight it. Yes, we're still broken, but we wanted to be two broken people that allowed God to take the shattered pieces and create something more beautiful and intricate than we could have ever imagined ourselves.

Each year, Kevin and I pray specifically for something. And I'm not even kidding when I say that it still amazes me at how God has been so crazy in answering our prayers….it's kinda like i'm now convinced that God doesn't want us to be about just "us" either. He wants us to be apart of HIS movement, a bigger "US" if you will... So here's a little story...

Our first year of marriage we prayed that God would use us in the neighborhood where we lived. Our apartment complex was teeming with people, old, young, and everywhere in between. Picture a taco truck on the curb, swarms of kids playing in the courtyard, abuelas chatting away, and lots of hot cheetos and takis. We moved on in, had lots of awkward conversations that turned into less awkward conversations, that soon turned into friendships, that eventually turned into kindred spirits. We held big parties and invited our neighbors. We failed at cooking a Turkey, sang very loud and off key Christmas carols, and held the jankiest VBS known to man on our porch. Every day kids came to play, and cook with me, or read books and play swords with Kevin. We feebly held a Bible study for college students in our home where often we didn't have the right words to say. But I cooked a lot of yummy food that hopefully that made up for it. And that year and a half in the barrio was so rich and dense with love. It united Kev and I in prayer, because we were just so far outside of our own sense of normal, but felt so right because we were so far inside God's will. Our hearts, oh yes they were knit together. {our first year on mission here}

Our second year, we prayed heavily that God would take us abroad to serve sometime before we had kids. In our minds, we really could not figure out how this would happen. We pursued avenues on our own, like I was a freaking pro at internet job hunting, and every door shut. Nothing felt right. But then God in his surprising ways orchestrated the perfect opportunity for us! We were asked to go to Nepal to help out with an aftercare home for girls rescued out of trafficking. The night we were asked, Kevin and I lay in bed under the covers, giggling like school girls in awe at the possibility. Not only was our dream to serve abroad being answered, but everything (from plane ticket, to house, to food) was taken care of! Like when the heck does that ever happen? Our time in Nepal only drew us closer, as we navigated sickness, a new culture, and the power of God working in the rescue of the girls…all together. I will cherish those memories forever. It was a marriage that felt alive, because it was a marriage on mission. {our second year on mission here}

And so this brings us into our third year of marriage. As you know, we are now back in the states, and I am in school. Things are routine again, and the ordinary stifles me. Kevin and I were feeling confused and a bit stumped as to where we were being called to serve. So a few months ago we began to regularly pray that God would open a door for us to get involved in…well, something. I happened to be standing in line at Target one night, and it suddenly dawned on me that I was completely surrounded by international students. There was a group of girls speaking German ahead of me, some guys speaking Arabic to my right, and a Korean couple to my left. It was like God took a mega phone, and was like "HELLO. These are my people from other lands, LOVE THEM". And I suppose if we want to love someone, we have to get to know them. And I hadn't the slightest clue how to meet international students, short of becoming a creepy stalker, which I was maybe willing to entertain the idea.

So Kev and I prayed, and I put a little shout out on Instagram. I honestly wasn't expecting much…but I guess IG is anointed because a friend of mine who lives in my hometown (in northern california) happened to casually mention that her uncle runs an international student ministry IN THE EXACT SAME TOWN WE LIVE IN (in southern california)! I literally fell on the floor. So I emailed her uncle, Kevin and I showed up at the conversation lunch with the students, and fast forward a month later and we are in love with these guys! God is showing us that we don't even have to go abroad to serve the nations…the nations are here at our doorstep and we can love them so well! Most international students never get invited into an american's home and how crazy it is that we get the privilege of welcoming the world into our home for a meal? I'm floored.

So yeah, this was a lot of rambling, and if you stuck around…best friend status.
But I just wanted to document this goodness, and drink it in.

 I so believe that whatever season we are in, God wants us to leverage that for HIS kingdom!

If you are married, then pray your little hearts out that God will use your marriage for HIS glory. He's kinda about that, so I promise He will answer in some crazy way. If you are single, pray your little heart out that He will take you on a ride for HIs glory!

Friends, we get to enter in and be enfolded into the plans of God to bring about justice, kindness, love, tenderness, gentleness, and PEACE to this world.

happy Friday! 

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