Thursday, February 26, 2015

The Sweetest Letter!

I received a letter today in the mail that is probably one of the best letters I've ever read. It was from a little girl that heard me speak in Florida and I'd like to share it with you! I hope this blessed you and much as it did me.

Monday, February 2, 2015


Teaching at a bible study in Zambia
I remember the first time I ever heard a missionary speak. I had just started attending my church while in college and the pastor was sharing a story from his time in Africa. I remember him talking about being broken down on the side of the road for a night and finding leopard tracks around his truck the next morning. My reaction was like everyone else's. "That's an awesome story but people like me don't do things like that."

As I was falling asleep the other night, I was thinking about the meeting I had just come home from. I was given the opportunity to share at a church gathering and spent time sharing about the ministry in Zambia. I was telling lots of stories, from people being healed to encounters with lions. It was while I was laying in bed that I remembered hearing that missionary speak years ago. It struck me how I was now in his place, sharing crazy stories with people.

We never know where God is going to take us when we allow Him to reign in our lives. Now I have my own crazy missionary stories. I'm sure there are many who hear me speak and think the same thing I once did. "That's an awesome story but people like me don't do things like that." These stories are just testimonies of what God is doing through my life. I'm not some crazy, epic person. I'm just simply a girl who said yes to God when He asked her to submit her life to him. And so far it's been epic! :)

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Walking Through Memories

One of the main reasons I came home early was to help my mom with cleaning out the garage. Now the garage has always been my dad's 'man cave.' Everything is there is just… dad. One of his many spare pairs of eyeglasses is still hanging above his workbench.

It was overwhelming at first to know where to begin with organizing all of the belongings stored in there. If there was an organizational plan to that garage it was only known by dad! As I've sorted through all of our belongings I've come to a few realizations.

1) My dad was a horder. I don't think he threw anything away that could have the slightest potential of having a use again, even if it would be years later!

2) Our outdoor gear rivals Cabelas.

3) If a zombie apocalypse ever really happens, we're ready in terms of weapons! Gotta love growing up in a family that hunts and fishes. (I may also be a huge fan of The Walking Dead and am still excited over the season premiere!)

My favorite has been finding things that trigger memories from my childhood. Whether it's an old bicycle seat, sled, or even my first tackle box (bright blue with mickey mouse!). I'm not a very sentimental person so I'm not particularly attached to the objects but the memories that they bring up. It's made this entire process a bit more of a joy to go through.

I miss my dad and there's no doubt that that's going to ever change. I miss the missed opportunities I had with him. However I cherish every single memory we have together even more!

Thursday, October 9, 2014


In every season we life we have things we need to adjust to. As a missionary I often find coming back home to America a big adjustment. I don't realize how much I've adapted to the Zambian culture until I find myself back home.

There are little things that my family and friends like to point out, my weird accent in particular. My mom pointed out my patience in restaurant the other day when food was taking longer then usual. To me it was still fast service!

Then there's always the first trip to the grocery store or Wal-Mart! The many options can be so overwhelming. An entire aisle for crackers?!

While I was out on a run in my neighborhood the other day, I realized another adjustment. I said hello to a man while I passed him and he looked at my like I had two heads! In Zambia we wave at everyone as we pass! It makes me sad that people don't talk more to each other in America.

I think this is one adjustment I'm going to fight. Our entire walk with Christ is based on relationships. You can never have a relationship with someone if there isn't an initial "hello." Next time you catch yourself passing by someone, take a minute just to say hi. You never know who God is putting in your path!

Monday, January 21, 2013

Desires of My Heart

"Delight yourself also in the Lord, and He shall give you the desires of your heart." Psalm 36:4

Sometimes you don't know the desires of your heart until they suddenly seem impossible. I've been learning that a lot since losing my dad. I didn't realize how much I wanted him to be there for whenever I get married, or even to see him be the grandfather to my children. Those things have just seemed so far into the future that I didn't focus on them. However, when they are now no longer possible, it's hard to accept.

One thing I knew I always wanted though was to stand with my family together in worshipping the Lord. Since Dad is now with Jesus, I thought it was impossible. However, God showed me that it's not.

It all comes down to a deeper revelation of worship. When we worship, we enter into the very presence of God. It's a sweetness that cannot be described properly in words. The Lord showed me recently that when we enter into His presence, we are right there where all those who have gone home before us are. Right where my dad is. So when I worship God, I'm worshipping right alongside my dad. Suddenly heaven doesn't seem so far away.

"With God all things are possible." Matt 19:26

Monday, November 5, 2012

Thoughts on Change

I realized that tomorrow was my original departure date from Africa for my visit home. It's strange to think that I would have been in africa still during these past fews months. I had originally planned to try and surprise my parents by coming home earlier then planned. However, that changed when Dad and I started planning a hunting trip together. We were discussing going deer hunting if I could survive the cold while sitting in a tree stand at sunrise. He was betting that I'd chicken out. He was probably right.

Not all of the changes in my life these past few months have been bad. (If you don't know, I lost my dad in a car accident at the end of August.) I feel like my family has never been closer. We've had a lot more get togethers with my aunts, uncles, and cousins besides just during the holidays. I didn't realize how much I've missed them over the years.

Some things haven't changed though. My heart for the nations hasn't. My vision for the rural villages in Zambia has, in fact, only grown stronger. I find that my passion for the work I'm doing with Overland Missions just erupts when I get to share it with others. It helps keep my focused on what God has called me to do.

Can we avoid change? Can we run from it? Never. However, God gives us the foundation to stand on when we face it- good or bad

Monday, October 1, 2012

If You Could See Me Now

If you could see me now you wouldn't shed a tear. 
Though you may not understand why I'm no longer there. 
Remember my spirit that is the real me because I'm still very
Much alive, I've just been set free, Oh, if you could only see! 
I have beheld our Father's face and I've touched my Savior's
Hand. All of Heaven's angels rejoiced as I entered the promised
Land. Beyond the gates of pearl I've walked on the golden streets. 
I've touched the walls of jasper and dipped my foot in the
Crystal sea. The beauty is beyond words and nothing could
Compare, I've even seen your mansion and someday 
I'll meet you there. Let Jesus be your guide because
His Word will show you the way! So please don't
Cry because we will meet again someday. 
-Author: Patsy Stambaugh Deskins

I found this poem today and it reminded me of dad. Even though I feel his loss so very much in my life, this poem was an amazing reminder of where Dad actually is at this very moment- in the very presence of the Lord. What a beautiful place to be!!