Retreat Reflections ☀️

Ahhhh… We just returned from our Present Moment Retreat refreshed and renewed! ❤️ What a true honor and blessing to guide yoga, build community, and nourish the body, mind, and spirit! 🙏🏻

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“The ultimate touchstone of friendship is not improvement, neither of the other nor of the self, the ultimate touchstone is witness, the privilege of having been seen by someone and the equal privilege of being granted the sight of the essence of another, to have walked with them and to have believed in them, and sometimes just to have accompanied them for however brief a span, on a journey impossible to accomplish alone.” ~ David Whyte


From my retreat journal… “But hope means that we must trust and wait for what is still unseen. For why would we need to hope for something we already have? So because our hope is set on what is yet to be seen, we patiently keep on waiting for its fulfillment. And in a similar way, the Holy Spirit takes hold of us in our human frailty to empower us in our weakness. For example, at times we don’t even know how to pray, or know the best things to ask for. But the Holy Spirit rises up within us to super-intercede on our behalf, pleading to God with emotional sighs too deep for words. God, the searcher of the heart knows fully our longings, yet He also understands the desires of the Spirit, because the Holy Spirit passionately pleads before God for us, His holy ones, in perfect harmony with God’s plan and our destiny. So we are convinced that every detail of our lives is continually woven together to fit into God’s perfect plan of bringing good into our lives, for we are His lovers who have been called to fulfill His designed purpose.” ~ Romans 8:24-28, The Passion Translation


Please enjoy the following visualization meditation I guided at retreat — bringing a little beach therapy back for you! 😊

Message in a Bottle (11 minutes)

 

Capturing Columbia! 🇨🇴

“Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders. Let me walk upon the waters wherever You would call me. Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander.” — Hillsong United

¡Buenas!

Columbia CAPTURED and CAPTIVATED us as a family. At first, it was the unique smell of the country as we first stepped outside the airport in Barranquilla. The beautiful ocean coast of Santa Marta, and the lush banana fields of Sevilla, Magdalena caught our eyes. The tastes of fresh coconut, plantains, and savory rice and meat dishes entertained our pallets. However, the precious Columbian people completely stole our hearts! Even in the poorest of physical circumstances, they had each other — a sense of community and togetherness. The patience and joy of the children encouraged us to embrace these qualities more so in ourselves.

Our days were filled serving in the Compassion Child Development Program in Sevilla, as well as making home visits to families who have children participating in the project. Compassion International beautifully addresses the physical, social/emotional, cognitive, and spiritual needs of the children and families involved in the program. They are making a HUGE difference in this community, and a global impact as they service needy countries all around the world.

We personally sponsor two children in Columbia, and were blessed to visit and play with them both for an entire day! Yasir and Jadis traveled far to join us for a water and beach experience. They journeyed by plane, boat, and bus to visit us. It was their first time to the city, and to the ocean. We had the BEST time ever! They hugged us continually and told us how much they loved us. They brought us beautiful, homemade gifts. Their family members were overwhelmed with both shock and gratitude. We treasure the opportunity to continue our relationships through regular letter writing, prayer, and financial support. We know God has big plans for Yasir and Jadis and their families! Please continue to pray for health, provision, opportunity, hope, and joy.

You will be My instrument. I will transform you and make you into a different person. As I train you to hear My voice, you will become a sharpened instrument in My hands. These are the days that I will train you and instruct you in My ways, giving you many secrets of what I am about to do. For I will make you a missionary of hope to many. You will be a voice that always brings life to others and grace to the weakest one. I will put words in your mouth that have never been declared or spoken before. I chose you for a purpose, and My plan for your life will be fulfilled. — I Hear His Whisper, Brian Simmons

Thank you for supporting us in this call of EXPANSION! May we all continue to LOVE, SERVE, and INSPIRE locally and globally through our thoughts, words, and actions.

“We will show mercy to the poor and not miss an opportunity to do acts of kindness for others, for these are the true sacrifices that delight God’s heart.” — Hebrews 13:16 TPT

Dios te bendiga,

Jon, Heather, Madeline, Mackenzie 

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Contemplating Columbia 🙏🏻

WOW!

In a few hours we leave for our family mission trip to Columbia with Compassion International! As I reflect upon my recent journal entries — may the following messages given to me encourage you to LOVE, SERVE, and INSPIRE in ways beyond your wildest dreams! ❤️


Be focused and fierce in prayer. Close your eyes to the obvious, and behold a vision of restoration and justice. This is what God wants to bring to earth. There are people who need you to close your eyes and see them when you pray. I mean really pray tenacious prayers that reach heaven and scare you as they pass over your lips.” ~ Lisa Bevere


“In a short while, you will be standing firm on the mountaintop. The vision you carry will unfold and carry you there. My encounters with you will increase and I will be instructing you on a new level.” ~ I Hear His Whisper, Brian Simmons


“When you enter a town and are received, eat what they set before you, heal anyone who is sick, and tell them, ‘God’s Kingdom is right on your doorstep!'” ~ Luke 10:9, The Message


Feed the hungry, and help those in trouble. Then your light will shine out from the darkness, and the darkness around you will be as bright as noon.” ~ Isaiah 58:10 (NLT)


“It doesn’t matter what others see for you. If God has spoken, believe Him. Go where He tells you to go; listen to what He speaks to you. Follow this Lion as He leads, and trust the knowing even when others might not understand. Are you ready to be amazed?” ~ Lisa Bevere


We are flying into Barranquilla, staying in Santa Marta, and serving in Sevilla, Magdalena, Columbia (see map below). This Compassion Trip is entirely possible because God opened a HUGE door for us to go, and because of the generous support of our dear family and friends!

Over 65+ individuals and/or families have helped us via fundraising support etc.! We are beyond grateful for each of YOU! — Kelli Abramovich, Debbie Ayer, Angela Bertram, Krysten Begley, Del & Betty Blake, Dan & Wilma Bohlmann, Barbie Borinski, Ed Canavan, Beth Cellular, Nicki Church, Clarkson Family, Teresa Demeter, Jaime Finnessey, Lyric Godfrey, Brittany Greathouse, Mary Grubb, Denise Gusich, Kay Hannah, Jen Haren, Hedrick Family, Jennifer Herman, Cindy Hoel, Diane Holtrup, Libby Hunt, Kim Family, Larish Family, Kim Mack, Tracy Macon, Mandat Family, Brenda Matthews, Lisa Maxcy, McFarland Family, Dana McNally, Ed McQuade, Amie Moller, Munson Family, Nichols Family, Virginia Orr, Hanan Palz, Maggie Parrish, Marcy Pratte, Maile Propst, Raber Family, Charlie & Pam Rehfeldt, Chuck & Mary Rehfeldt, Heather Ripberger, Nathalie Rivett, Nicole Roberts, Todd Rogers, Bob & Jackie Rundio, Stephanie Russell, Saar Family, Amber Samplin, Kate Shipp, Stephanie Sinagra, Bebe Smith, Summer Standifer, Susan Tangeman, George & Michelle Taylor, Martin & Haydee Taylor, Tracy Trapnell, Trowbridge Family, Valencia Family, Shauna VanHemert, Dan & Melana Wallace, Wang Family, Terri Wiest, Lynn Dee Witteveen, and Suzanne Zupancic. ❤️


Please continue to keep us and our team in your thoughts and prayers as we serve the beautiful children, families, and communities of Northern Columbia April 4-9, 2018. May God bless you beyond measure! 🙏🏻

❦ God, give us eyes to see, ears to hear, hands to love, and hearts to grow in our understanding of You.

❦ God, use us and our team to love these kids and their families, and use us to be Your message to them — that You see them, know them, love them, and have amazing plans for them.

❦ God, may our team be an encouragement to everyone we encounter!

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