The Beginning

Well I made it to Brisbane, Australia and have been here for about three weeks and I’m LOVING it! It’s been insanely busy these last three weeks and even though they have gone by fast I feel like I’ve known both this place and the people here forever!

This week we have been learning about hearing the voice of God and Intercession and I can’t help but think that the people with me here were an answer to prayer!  It’s amazing how fast we have all connected with each other and it feels like a little family already! I also can’t help but think this is a little glance into what heaven will be like.  I see nothing but family being in heaven connected by our love for the Father.  All together praising Him and encouraging one another.  Never to feel lonely but surrounded by loved ones. Ah! I can’t wait to see that glorious place!

My passion and eagerness to share Jesus with others have grown so much since being here! I want people to feel and experience the love of God and the hope we have in Him!  In my Bible reading I found a verse that really spoke to me.  It’s Philippians 2:14-16 and it says “Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life-in order that I may boast on the day of Christ that I did not run or labor for nothing.” WOW! What a powerful verse.  We are called to be stars that shine in a world full of darkness. This makes me look even harder at how I act and carry myself.  I want others to know I’m different (in a good way!) and wonder why. I want to catch other people’s attention so that they ask “why?” I want to show the love of God to everyone I come into contact with.  I know this is a high goal and if you believe it or not we are human and we all mess up but that shouldn’t stop us from striving to be like Jesus every second of the day.  So I am going forward with that attitude and hope to turn a few heads in the process so that God can work through me and so that God can reach the lost!

The photo below is of my finance progress.  We found out the choices for our outreach locations and I will soon announce where I will be going next!! So I am trying to get a head start on getting the money together for my outreach phase! If you are interested in joining my little adventure please contact me!  God is going to amazing things during this time and YOU have the chance to be a part of it!  I think is so cool that anyone and everyone can make a difference no matter where they are or what they do!  As you can see by the photo below I am SO close to having the rest of my budget so please consider joining what God has planned for this time!

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Philippians 4:1 “Therefore, my brothers, you whom I love and long for, my joy and crown, that is how you should stand firm in the Lord, dear friends”

The Countdown Begins!

Well tomorrow marks ONE month till I leave for Australia!! Its crazy to think about but I think its starting to feel REAL…Im REALLY going!! I can’t imagine what is waiting for me there but Im SO excited!

Things have been a little slow fundraising wise but Im keeping the faith and trusting in God to provide all that I need :] I feel like the DTS has already started and this whole support raising thing is my first lesson…FAITH.  Money is something we all deal with and need and usually comes with stress.  I worry constantly about bills, gas, food, and now everything needed for YWAM.  I think we all need to take a step back and look back on times in our past that we have stressed about money…did it all work out in the end?  I am sure 90% could say yes! I know I can…everytime I have worried about money it eventually works out somehow..that right there is GOD. He provides for us over and over and most of the time we just pass it by because we have for some reason grown accustomed to God’s provision.  These are things that I want to work on and improve.  First, to not worry about money but let it go and give to God becuase he NEVER fails us and he will always provide.  Second, to give thanks and credit to God for that provison, not to just be thankful it worked out but to give thanks to GOD for working it out!

In the process of applying for my visa I got flagged becuase of my numerous world travels…lol!  So on tuesday I traveled to St. Louis to do medical testing to hopefully clear up any worries the visa people may have about me!  Please keep this issue in your prayers.  Please pray that the results get to the officals as quickly as possible so that I have my visa in time for my departure.  This also came with extra cost i was not expecting so I would appreciate any prayers reguarding fundrasing!

So many have already given to my DTS and I am SO thankful.  I know how hard it is to give..believe me! We all have things we need and could use the money for so I really am SO thankful that you chose to invest in my future!!

I don’t think I have ever been so eager to do anything in my life!  I just know that im going to change for the better and get closer to God…and I want that more than anything…ANYTHING.  I am excited to be surrounded by people who share the same passion for God as I do and to learn and grow with them!

Im seriously SHAKING as I write this…I dont have the words to express how deep my need for this DTS is..all I can say is I’m READY!!

So please join me in prayer and financial support for this amazing journey I’m about to embark on in just ONE month!!

Here is a video showing one way I use my passion for art to bring glory to GOD: Oceans Painting Video

Thanks for reading and contact me if you are intersted in joining my journey!!

Bethany

cookie time!

cookie time!

I am selling these beautiful holiday cookies made by my wonderful sister to help fund my YWAM trip! Get some amazing and delicious cookies for the holidays while supporting a great cause!

YWAM Brisbane

Hey guys! Here is YWAM Brisbane’s promo video. Hopefully it will inspire you and will also show why I am so passionate about this program! I believe I will find direction and Him and can not wait. I am in desperate need for both of these things and I am asking for people to join me in my journey and this amazing opportunity! Please contact me at bethanydownunder@gmail.com if you are interested in joining me either in prayer or financial support. The need is great but He is greater!!

Puzzles Puzzles Puzzles

Hey guys!

            I was thinking the other day about puzzles.  I feel like a lot of people would agree with me that when you FINALLY finish a puzzle, it’s an awesome feeling to take a step back and look at the beautiful picture you just put together.  It’s crazy to me that a few hundred little pieces, which on their own don’t look like much, could make a beautiful picture.

            I can totally relate to this because it’s pretty much the same as painting a picture.  I spend hours putting thousands of small strokes of paint on a canvas to create a picture.  That’s crazy!  Sometimes it’s hard and tedious, but once I’m done, I look at it and get the most wonderful feeling inside!  I say WOW!  I really just did that! 

            I can also relate to this as I am starting a new puzzle of “fundraising.”  It’s probably one of the hardest and least fun puzzles out there for me, but it leads to something so wonderful!  I did some figuring, and if 200 people gave just $50 dollars, that would come out to $10,000!  That right there is my entire budget for my YWAM DTS.  So I am asking for 200 puzzle pieces to complete my beautiful picture.  You see, no piece is more important than the other because EVERY piece is essential.  A puzzle missing a piece is no longer a beautiful picture … it’s just a collection of cardboard!  Please know that if you invest in this puzzle, you will not just be a piece of cardboard but an essential part of God’s picture for my life!

 

And for an added bonus!  The first 20 people will get their very own painting by yours truly!!

 

Email me at bethanydownunder@gmail.com

I’m ready for this!

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Well its official! I have been approved for the YWAM music, art and dance discipleship training school! I could not be more excited about this new chapter in my life.  I am completely ready to give myself to God and let this program teach me and help me grow in Him.  I will leave for Brisbane, Australia in February and the program will last till August. If you would like to get a little bit more information about what a DTS is, you can go here: http://www.goywam.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=113&Itemid=456

This DTS is specifically focused on music, art and dance.  In my case it will be art.  We will have specific times each week to develop our gifts and discover ways to use them for God.  If you know me at all you know I have a huge passion for painting.  I have always loved art but only recently discovered my love for painting, and I can’t imagine doing anything else.  I know God has special things planned for using the gift he has given me to further His kingdom, and I am convinced that this program will help me discover that.  Another very cool aspect of the DTS is that during the last three months of the program I will go with a team somewhere in the world and do an outreach using everything we learned during the previous months.  Previous teams have gone to places such as Japan, Thailand, and Saipan and have been involved in various outreaches using the fine arts. I have read many stories about the incredible things that happen during these outreaches, and I can’t wait to see what God has planned!

First, I would like to ask that you join with me in prayer.  Pray that God would prepare my heart for this experience.  Pray that God would move through the DTS program and everyone involved.  Pray that I grow deeper in my relationship with God there.  Pray for the relationships I will make, and that I will be able to open up and truly grow in every aspect of my life.  Pray that God would provide financially during this whole process.  Finally pray that God would bless abundantly those who give because they are the ones that will get me there and will make the amazing things God has planned possible. 

Like any school there are financial deadlines I must meet.  Unique to this experience is that the school is a ministry in itself.  In addition to my classroom work, I will be involved in numerous outreaches during my time there.  The money you give will be used not only to help me grow in my relationship with God and learn how to better reach the lost, but it will also benefit the people of Brisbane as we reach out to them during the DTS as well as the people we will reach during the outreaches.  I am asking that you would prayerfully consider donating to this wonderful opportunity.  It will be impossible for me to do this without YOU.  In total I will need to raise about 10,000 dollars.  This is a huge amount, but I have complete faith in God that He will provide.  Any amount will help me … seriously ANY amount will help.  The first deadline is September 10when I will need about $1,000.  After that deadline I would like to have the rest of the money by the end of November.  Please help me and become a part of the bigger picture! 

If you are interested in joining with me financially or in prayer, please contact me ASAP.  My email address is bethanydownunder@gmail.com

 

Thank you for reading, and I hope you have a wonderful day!

 

Bethany

What’s next….

As I sit here in the last few hours of being 22 I cant help but look back at my life the past few years.   I went from being a university student to a university drop out to an art teacher in Sudan to going back to China.  These few decisions have changed my life completely.  Its crazy how one decision and change your life forever.  I am so glad I decided to go Evangel.  I made new friends there and also met up with old ones.  I learned how to live in American culture even though I didn’t even know I need learning!  I though I had it all figured out, I mean I only lived in China for six years my life…the rest of the time I was in the states.  How hard could it be?  Turns out a lot!  Some of my issues were just plane ole growing up issues but I’m glad I learned from them.  When I made the decision to leave Evangel many people didn’t understand why.  College is just what you do…you get an education then a job and then you do that job for the rest of your life.  Well I learned I am defiantly NOT like those people.  Since I was seven I have moved over twenty times.  It has become a part of my life to move, meet new people, and make new memories.  There is a line in a certain song that I identify with a lot, its goes “I got a gypsy sole to blame and I was born for leaving.”  So it was only natural that I got started looking for what was next in my life.  I was given the amazing opportunity to teach art in Sudan for a year.  I don’t think I have ever been so excited about anything in my life.  Ask anyone and they will tell you that I’d been talking about going to Africa like my entire life…and even better? I get to teach art!  So in no time I was off on another adventure.  Unfortunately things don’t always end up like we had hoped.  Things ended up not working out in Sudan and after six months there I decided to leave and move back to China.  This is one of the biggest tragedies in my life up to this point.  I had such high expectations of what God was going to do in and through me.  When things don’t turn out its hard not to dwell on it.  I have only just begun to sort through all the emotions of leaving Sudan.  It will always hold a place in my heart.  Then before I knew it I was back to China.  Now not everybody knows this but up to this point was not a fan of China.  I didn’t really enjoy growing up there, I always had felt alone and I struggled with depression.  So even though I was excited to go back and see my parents I was also pretty nervous about it.  I didn’t want to go back to the dark pit that I put myself into when I was living there.  But I felt God telling me this was the right next step for me.  And wow was He right!  My life changed so much in those six months.  I fell in love with China.  I fell in love with the people there.  I made such strong friendships with some of the students at the university I was at.  I had never felt such love for that place and the people there.  Coming back to America was so insanely hard for me; I didn’t want to leave this place I could finally call home.  But I knew it was time.  So here I am back in the states working in the food industry.  Some may think that is too mundane but I enjoy it!  I love the people I work with and have fun most of the time ;].  At the same time I know this is not what I am suppose to do the rest of my life.  So I found myself in that familiar time in my life where I needed to figure out what was next for me.  I am so tired of trying to figure it all out so I’ve decided to let God do it!  He knows what’s best for me and I know he has great plans for me.  This leads me to the whole reason of this post.  In February 2014 I will be attending an YWAM DTS in Brisbane, Australia.  This specific DTS (discipleship training school) is focused on music, art, and dance hence the name MAD DTS.  I am confident this will lead me to what God has planned for me.  The first part of the DTS is mostly lectures where I will learn more about God so that I am better equipped to share about Him.  The last part of the DTS I will go with a small team to a country and do an outreach together using our gifts and what we have learned.  I am trusting in God more than ever.  I trust he will use this time in my life to reveal himself to me so that I become closer to Him.  I also trust he will use this time to show me what He called me to do and how I will use my love for art to glorify him and to share about Him.  I am so excited about this opportunity and feel confident in what God is doing in my life.  I am giving Him total control…I ask Him to do his will through me and to bring glory to His name.  I will share more about ways to partner with me but for now I would just ask you to join me in prayer that God would prepare my heart for this opportunity and that his provision would reign in my life.  Thank you all for reading (if you made it this far lol!).  I am hopeful that the 23rd year of my life will be a great one, focused on God and pursuing His will. 

 

Thank you to all who believed in me and have showed support throughout my life.  I don’t always make it easy but I am so thankful for the people God has blessed me with, an incredible family and amazing friends.  I couldn’t ask for a better life than the one He has given me.  You all make me feel special and thankful to be alive.  You drive me to become better and reach for my dreams.  Thank you!

 

Bethany