Friday, 6 January 2017

Never the Odd One Out

I've been reminded many times in the past few weeks something that God impressed upon me a while ago.  He said, "You are never the odd one out." I believe this was for me personally, but it's also for anyone who feels left out sometimes.

Never the Odd One Out

You are never the odd one out.
I am with you until the end of the age.
I have clothed you in white
You are righteous and holy 
and precious and MINE

I am renewing your mind, changing the way you think.
I am preparing you for war.
I put your armour on for you sometimes,
When you feel weak or unworthy.
When you are weak, I am strong
And give you My strength.

When you feel unworthy 
I tell you of your worth and your beauty.
You will never be alone. 
I am by your side.
Just look up into My eyes of fire and see Me
See My glory on display for everyone who looks to Me.

Then your strength will be renewed with your mind,
You will trust in Me
and lean not on your own understanding
But in Mine, which is perfect and true.

My love is for all for I am Love
A love that is patient and kind,
Selfless and strong.
More powerful than death itself.
You are never the odd one out.

I've really enjoyed the past few weeks, celebrating Christmas and New Years with friends, going on a mini holiday to New Zealand, and getting to meet new staff for this next year. It's also been hard sometimes, not being at home with family during Christmas time. But God's been teaching me a lot through it, about obedience in Him, relying on Him for strength and guidance, and trusting that He will show me what's next in 2017.  He's been closing a few doors, but I trust that means He will be opening ones that are better than I could ever imagine on my own.

enjoying the Christmas lights of Toowoomba
playing carols at Just Church

redecorating and getting ready for new roommates
Christmas eve dinner

Here are a few highlights of the last few weeks.

Climbing Tabletop to see the sunrise. We got up at 3am to say goodbye to a staff member and friend and then drove to Tabletop mountain. I've never climbed Tabletop in the dark so it felt like completely different terrain. I feel like God always shows me something when climbing that mountain, and this time was no different. I was more grateful than ever for the friends I have, friends that are encouraging, willing to help and hike slower than they could to make sure I'm okay. Friends that have my back and light my path (literally with flashlights, since mine died).  Also, God is never boring. He's always creating something new. Even though it was overcast that morning and we didn't see the sunrise as much as we'd hoped, a different thing happened. The sun rays came out from the clouds slowly but surely until the whole sky was bright. So cool!

Another highlight was my trip to New Zealand. It's such a beautiful country. I feel like when God created the world, He had a cup full of "beauty" He could spread out over the world.  By the time He got to New Zealand, the cup was still half full and He just decided to pour the rest of the "beauty" over that country.

I went to New Zealand primarily to renew my visa as I am staying here in Australia for an additional 6 months and I needed to be outside of Australia to apply for the visa. At first, I was kind of annoyed I had to leave the country and fly to New Zealand between Christmas and New Years.  But I am very happy I did. First, a praise report. My visa was granted in 29 minutes! That meant I got to spend the rest of my time enjoying the people and the view instead of worrying about the visa being granted on time.
While I was in New Zealand, I got to spend some time with a few old friends & meet new ones, go hiking, see some glow worms, and just rest in God.
hanging out with my friend Kahlia,
a past student
me and my friend Landon,
a past YWAM Toowoomba staff

Cathedral Cove
on a walk to Cathedral Cove

view from Mount Maunganui

Auckland from on top of Sky Tower
looking up at the Sky Tower in Auckland

We just started Staff orientation this week and I'm looking forward to meeting the new students who arrive in two weeks. 

Thanks for all your prayers and support. I would love to hear from you, to hear more about your heart and what God's been teaching you lately and how I can be praying for you.

Remember, you are never alone, and you are never the odd one out.