Tag Archive: God

I believe that your dreams can be good and God inspired and that he uses them for things.  However, if you rely on them too much then it’s not going to do you any good.  For example, in my last blog I mentioned that I wanted to go to Peru and do all this stuff and bring a team down there eventually.  I still believe that these are dreams and desires he has given me but I also think I was trusting in them too much and not trusting him to mold and shape these dreams.

God’s plans for your life are so much bigger than you can imagine or think and when you concentrate on one or two dreams he has given you then you end up missing something. Before I went to Peru, I thought the Lord was saying, give your dreams and desires that I have given you because I’m going to do something so much better if you just trust me and the plans I have for you.  I wasn’t completely comfortable in giving them up right away but ultimately decided that he knows best and most likely he’s going to use my obedience.

The second thing I felt like I was being told was be faithful in the small things and you will be rewarded with much.  Don’t wait and do something that you feel like God called you to do but do what is in front of you first.  If you are obedient in serving and doing the little things, he will be able to trust you with the bigger things.  It seems like a simple biblical concept but I think that its truly a great thing to put into practice.

Look, I know that God has a humongous plan for my life and he may or may not include the dreams and desires that I’ve had so far.  However, I also know that if I trust in him, he’s going to end up blessing me and trusting me with much and it will always blow my mind that he loves me and wants to include me in his work.  I want to be that guy!  I want to be like Jesus.  I want to be the guy that goes when somebody needs to be sent but I also want to be that guy that stays and cleans the toilet if that’s what needs to be done.


My idea wasn’t to come to Peru by myself to hangout with friends and relax.  My plan included bringing a team of people and reaching out to the poor areas of town and possibly even the jungle.  I wanted to do so much in the short two weeks that I was saving my time for.  As God often does, he changed my plans.

I’ve had such a strong desire to return to Peru since my February 2012 trip along with my friend and roommate Paulo.  I wanted to go do something for God and for the people of Peru.  I was going to be the leader of a missions trip that was going to be different.  It was going to be one of those short term trips that actually does good for the local community.  When I began to see that things weren’t going to work out after trying to plan and meet with people, I began to become very frustrated.  I was upset with myself, other people, and even God for not allowing me to do work for him.  I then began to go with him to the wilderness and found out that he wanted me to himself and that he had so many plans and gifts for me.  He wanted me to be ready for things ahead and not to be frustrated by my lack of works.

After that, I felt a little better but then got the idea to take the trip by myself anyway because I had been saving up the vacation time for a trip this year anyway.  I finally worked it out with my missionary friends and looked forward to going and helping them out.  Again, I had a plan to teach in the ministry school, minister in shanty town, pray for the college, etc…

Then September and October came along which included allergic reactions, bed bugs, broken doors, broken water heater, cleaning my entire home, throwing away many things, and drying every piece of cloth in my entire home.  As you can imagine, this was extremely stressful and overwhelming(not to mention my finances taking a huge hit).  By the time everything was taken care of with the bugs and fixing the other stuff it was a few weeks before I was to leave and I was still worried, stressed, and breaking out in hives.  I was determined to still go and give it my best shot.  I sent a message to my missionary friend Shaun and told him that I had a rough couple weeks and he responded with him saying they would pray.

Fast Forward to my arrival and one of the first things Shaun says to me on the ride back to the house is based on what you told me , we have decided that you are going to be treated as a family guest meaning I could participate in things or not.  He recommended that I just rest and then see how I felt.  I wasn’t sure how to take it but knew that it was the right thing to do.

I began to rest the next couple days with every intention of getting up to go to the school and prayer one of the days but I never made it.  I slept the best I have ever slept in my entire life.  Approximately 10 hours every night.  It was insane!  I ended up going to church and praying a few times for people, going to children’s church once, and taking a prayer walk and that was pretty much the extent of my “service” while I was there. 

My Father (God) always has the best plans for me even when I think my plans are to honor him and are the best for me.  He thought it was a better idea for me to rest, have fun, and spend time in his presence for a restful two weeks.  He was right and I’m better for it. What’s new?  haha.

Peru Arrival

I arrived here in Peru after a long 17 hours of planes, layovers, and bad airplane food.  With about 3 hours to go, I broke my headphones and man did I hit a wall after that.  I even ended up reading 2 People magazines that my plane seat neighbor offered.  She was a sweet lady. I feel bad because the actual headphone piece was stuck in the jack without a way to get it out.

All in all, I arrived in one piece and got through immigration and customs pretty quickly.  Shaun was there to greet me and it was so good to see him.  It’s not fun to fly by yourself for more than a couple hours and I was glad I had somebody to talk to on the way back to his house.

He explained to me that based on what I had told him that I would be treated as a family guest and that I could do and not do what I want when it comes to ministry stuff.  I told some of you and had a post on Facebook saying that this would be a more restful trip because it’s been a hard couple months.  I was grateful to hear that there was no pressure for me to perform or participate in anything. I feel like I’ll take this first week and really pray and spend time with God to see what he’s saying and why he has me here.  There is this deep need for solitude right now and I have the perfect room in their house to do it.

Please pray that I hear what the Lord says and that I trust that he will speak and come through for me.

I feel like I write about the same things all the time.  I don’t know if it is because I always fail at these things or my progress is just too small for me to see.  I feel more lonely and broken than I ever have but this time I know that it’s okay to be this way.  I know I need Jesus more than I ever had in this time.  Even as I type this, I’m listening to Jonathan David Helser sing about how he is closer than my own skin. Man, why can’t I just realize this and give in to his overwhelming comfort and peace?  I even seek for love and peace in the right place most of the time but to be with a community(body) and to actually be with that community consciously is so different.

I know that isolating myself is not the right thing to do and I don’t but it almost seems like I’m isolating myself within a community and that can only be my fault, I think.  It’s probably because I don’t really initiate and communicate things to people very well.  I’m still learning a lot in that department these days.  I desperately wish to have a best friend that I can tell everything to.  I have a couple people I can do this with but sometimes it seems like they are all busy with their own lives.  When these times come and I feel like nobody wants to spend time with me and I sit here for hours on the stupid alternative universe that is Facebook, I wonder what am I actually doing with this life.

Please pray for motivation for me.  I know that God isn’t going to make me pick up a bible or go serve or anything but I seriously lack motivation to do anything when it comes to spending time with him within the last few months.  I have started listening to worship music more often and I believe that is a start but I really need to know his presence.  His presence is where everything is that I need.  Pray it is with me when I wake up and when I lay down.

Also, I know God has big plans for me and my service for him but it seems so far off and I can’t seem to gain any traction in doing anything for him in spreading the Good News!  I desperately want people to come to him on the account of them seeing him in me but I don’t think that happens very often.  I want to be able to communicate better and to love better and just abide.  I strive too much.

Thanks for listening even though there isn’t any stories or more detailed thoughts.  Hopefully, some others feel some of these things sometimes too and it helps you know that your not alone.

Love, Justin

My greatest two fears right now

Why would I write about the two things that I fear the most right now and don’t want to talk about?  God told me to and I’m sure it is because some of you( if not all) will be able to relate in one way or another.

Fear #1 The Fear of Confrontation

I have always been the one to give up my lunch money instead of putting up a fight.  I have felt like that if somebody wants to argue or confront me, I must be in the wrong or have hurt them somehow.  So I give in and let them have there way and I therefore have been a push over most of my life.  However, in the last few years, I have realized that I must put up a fight for some things that I believe in.  If I don’t I will most likely end up being in trouble or involved in something that I never intended to be a part of and that usually holds me back from what I’m actually suppose to be doing.  So there comes a point where you can love and care for a person so much that you will not want to confront them on certain things that you need for them to do or that you need from them.  I had been growing from no confrontation at all to trying to be the most loving and non-direct as possible.  This can work rarely but most of the time it ends up to where somebody is confused or you give in and your right back to where you were in the first place.  So at this point I fluctuate between being non-direct and knowing that I need to be direct and loving.  I know I need to graduate to being as direct and as loving at the same time.  I need to just say things when they need to be said and get it out so that they clearly understand.  Now there is still a way to do this in a loving healthy way.  You can be bold and loving at the same time.  Verses that comes to mind are 2 Timothy 1:7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity. God want us to be bold and not fear.  Deuteronomy 31:6 So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them.  For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you.  He will neither fail you nor abandon you.  So let’s be bold and confront things we need to confront head on.  Please pray that I am able to do this as there is a situation in my life where I need to do a much better job at this.

Fear #2 Being Alone

This one I really do not want to talk about at all but I know I need to.  I know that it is dumb but I fear being by myself.  It’s not that I don’t know that The Lord is there, it’s because he is there.  I’ve never been disappointed with being alone with him but I know that when I’m alone that I’m vulnerable.  The loneliest times in my life were very hard even though I knew he was there.  Don’t get me wrong, I know that he will be gentle with me but I just get this anxiety and anxiousness right now when I think about being alone.  I seem to think he is going to make me change and have me do something else.  I’m blessed to be a part of the best community of believers that I’ve ever been a part of and again for some reason I feel like he wants to take them away and that I will not want to do what he wants.  It’s very likely that he just wants me to be with him and him alone and for me to trust him .  He may just want me to be away from them for a small period of time because they represent my comfortable place.  I know that when your comfortable then its time to move and do something else.  I know that he’s not going to make me do something that I don’t desire but its really hard for me to believe and trust in that right now that he really does have the best in mind and has great plans for me to prosper and have a great life.  I’m looking to go on a solitude retreat so that I can go be alone with him.  I would love that you could pray that I do that and that in the future, I would not be hesitant to go away with him in solitude.  I want to be okay when its just me and him.  I want to have a good relationship and be friends and have great conversations.  I want this so that when he brings the right woman for me then I can only trust in my relationship w/ him and therefore know that me and her will be okay as well.  Lastly, I want to be able to trust in Jeremiah 29:11 and Romans 8:28.

We have been in the book of Hosea at my college young adult ministry on Tuesdays.  It is very interesting what God calls Hosea to do in taking a wife of prostitution.  Yet, if you think of it in this story; we are Gomer.  We tend to deny, disobey, ignore, reject God just as she does Hosea.  However, God chooses to love Gomer and Hosea does as well and keeps going after her.  He has a covenant relationship to where he just can’t but help to love her (us).

Now bear with me as I’m going to be vulnerable here but I also know what it’s like to be Hosea in this story because of my marriage fallout.  My ex-wife left me on Thanksgiving of 2007 in which come to found out was for a man that she had gone out with two days prior to that.  I knew that they had gone out but was a little naive at the time and actually didn’t care much because our relationship had already fallen apart.  The point being she ended up pregnant 3 months later and had a little girl in 2008.  I did not know until I stumbled upon a message from the father asking the ? if I had been with her.  I had not but when I found out I was devastated again because it was such a desire of my heart to become a father.  I had so many thoughts of Why was I not good enough and Didn’t I give you everything that you needed?  I couldn’t bear thinking about it much without being depressed and I hated her for it intensely.  So when Gomer does this to Hosea or when we do this to God he doesn’t hate us?  Say What!

This love that he provides is the best thing that I have ever experienced.  Even though I only catch small glimpses from time to time it is overwhelming.  I think I’ll be asking why for the rest of my life just because it’s unbelievable.  There is no good explanation to why he did what he did in my and your place.  We continue to be unfaithful from time to time and yet he is there every time when we come home.  I know what this unfaithfulness does to someone and how much pain, hurt, frustration, and hate it causes.  However, all he does is love.

Romans 5:8   But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Let’s praise him for his covenant love that we may never understand completely!

It’s one thing to know God was fully human and fully God through Jesus Christ his son.  It is another to know and understand that Jesus knew and experienced our same emotions.  I don’t normally think of Jesus being depressed and lonely.  At times, he was rejected, broken, mocked, and despised.  Jesus knew the Father and he was within the Father just as he is within us.  I feel like he knew what to do with those emotions because knowing the Father.  If we know the Father and press into him while we experience any of these so called negative emotions, I think we can come out of it much quicker because we will know how to deal with them.  We will be able to recognize that his love covers us and he wants to lavish it on us.  It’s like real life, you can love somebody from afar but if they are right there before you, you can really love them and show it.  The Lord wants to be close to you.  You can always look to Jesus as an example because he experienced the things we experience, he experienced human life.