Thursday, May 17, 2012

New City. New Neighbors. New Experiences.

When I started this blog, I promised myself I would update it on a regular basis.

So here we are 3 months since my last post, if you are a regular reader, you'd think I dropped off the face of the earth!

 But fret not. I am here.

And if you are here because I sent you a support letter in the mail....WELCOME! :)

In fact I have not been twiddling my thumbs around, doing nothing. A LOT has been going on!

If you have read any of my posts on this blog or even talked to me in person, you know a bit about my journey in the past year as I have tried to figure out this call that the Lord has put on my heart for the urban poor.

For the longest time I struggled with how to make sense of it all. I went to school for Film! I thought I was going to work in Hollywood working on TV shows and summer blockbusters.

But during my last year at Biola, things began to change. I became heavily involved with various ministires, I got to invest in the lives of others and be invested in by amazing teachers and mentors. As I gained opportunities to minister to the urban poor, the more my heart began to break and I realized how much the gospel was needed in the city.

I realized that working with people wasn't just something I was good at, it was life-giving. I began reevaluating my future. My brain began to hurt as hundreds of questions raced through my mind.

Is this just a phase? Am I cut out this? Am I strong enough? What the heck am I gonna do with a film degree?!

A month before graduation I finally came to terms with it. GOD DOES NOT WASTE. He has given me my gifts, talents, and passions for a specific reason. He gives us specific seasons to use these gifts, talents, and passions. I believe that God will provide opportunities to work with the urban poor as well as opportunities to use my talents of film and media.

With that I am excited to share with you what is next for me!

 This summer I will be living in Bellflower, CA as a Community Fellow through a non profit organization called Kingdom Causes Bellflower.  The Community Fellows program is an opportunity for young leaders to gain tangible, hands on experience in Christian community development work. I will move into an under-resourced neighborhood in Bellflower, and will use my time in the neighborhood to intentionally build relationships with my neighbors and help bring about community transformation. The Kingdom Causes staff will provide training and support as we learn about community development, and will cover our housing costs for the year.

I look forward at the opportunity to work with like-minded people to provide a glimpse of reconciliation, hope, and healing that comes from the gospel. I am excited to gain hands on experience doing urban ministry and learning what it looks like to truly love my neighbor. I am looking forward to being stretched relationally, emotionally, and spiritually. 

A year ago, I would have NEVER imagined that I would get an opportunity like this! The Lord has been so faithful to me in the past year. It has been a difficult process, especially in the past six months. There have been times where my faith has been shaken and tested. But I am reminded of this verse: 

'Your word is a lamp to my feet, and a light to my path.' 
(Psalm 119:105) 

As much as we want to see what our future looks like, we simply can't. What we can do is abide in Christ and TRUST that he will provide in his timing. This is such a difficult concept to truly believe in our hearts (I have my freak out moments from time to time, thankfully I have a few core people to knock some biblical sense into me!) Surrendering our fears to the Lord and allowing him to do his work is very, very difficult!

As I meditate on Psalm 119:105, I see how much this verse is so applicable to my stage in life. He reveals little by little his plans for me, and by faith I must follow. And he always provides. 

Thank you for your support. I hope you will follow me in my journey in the next year! Feel free to subscribe to this blog!

Check out more about Kingdom Causes Bellflower 

-Rachel :) 

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