Kia ora! I have arrived safe and sound to the YWAM base in Oxford, after what seemed like a lot of travel. Thank you for praying for safe travels and good health, I am feeling much better now that I’ve got my feet on the ground. Before I talk about NZ I need to brag on God for how he blessed me during my travels: First, I got to stay in Portland for a few days with a friend of a friend. It was just 2 of us in a spacious house with a gorgeous kitchen which was much needed after 3 months sharing a dorm building with 60 people. I wasn’t feeling great so I didn’t really get to see Portland but rather slept most of the weekend away, but it ended up being exactly what I needed. Then, I took a train to Seattle. My train was late so I ended up getting to Seattle after midnight and was debating whether to try public transit or take a cab to the airport – knowing that public transit would be cheaper but not sure if I would be able to find the station and wanting to stay safe being solo in a strange place late at night. Well, God sent an angel literally out of nowhere that showed me to the subway, which was only a 2 minute walk from the train station, and it turned out that late and night you can ride for free. Then on my long 14 hour flight I got an entire row to myself, so even though I don’t sleep well on planes, I was able to stretch out and sleep better than normal. Ok, on to New Zealand. After 15 months away from my beloved Oxford, the Lord opened the door and called me back. When I was praying about this season the word I got was to serve wherever needed, and right now that is in the kitchen which I am stoked about (though I’ve decided my unofficial title will be prayer warrior and encourager extraordinaire :D) I will be cooking with a lovely Malaysian woman whom I already love, she is so similar to me and so something only the Lord could orchestrate. This base is getting a School Of Worship, the first one is running at the end of February, and once that gets up and rolling that will be the my “bread and butter”, the main thing I do on base, and probably various roles around when that’s not running. It’s a really beautiful, unique season here on base right now – this is the smallest quarter I’ve ever been around for. The Snowboarders DTS kicks of on Sunday night and there are only 9 students, so with students and staff there will probably be around 25 people around the next 3 months. I’ve never seen a season like this here and while it’s weird and different I’m excited for what the Lord is going to do – one of the things our base is big on is a family feel and it is cool to see how that has continued to increase in the 15 months I’ve been gone. One of the things that has changed that I love is that we now eat family style for lunch and dinner instead of buffet style which I’m seriously digging. I was chatting to someone tonight and noticed there was a mixture of around 8 students/staff in the kitchen cleaning up dinner, baking for the welcome dinner, and just hanging out and BEING together. It made me really happy, I love crowded kitchens, perhaps because I come from a large family. Grace (the other cook) was telling me today how she never wants anyone to be told they’re not welcome in the kitchen, which I was stoked about because my heart was that the kitchen would be very much open-door, so to come in and see that already in play was awesome! Like I said, God has totally orchestrated Grace and I working together this season and I’m excited for what’s in store. The Crossroad’s DTS is also returning from outreach the next few days and will be here the first week for debrief. It’s such a beautiful time to be back – to celebrate with one school as they wrap up an incredible season, and to celebrate with another as they start this incredible DTS journey. Even though I am a bit jet lagged, I also feel so rested just being back in the place I consider home. The Lord has so much for me in this next season and I’m amped – even in the last day I feel like my passion for Him has increased and I’m stoked to go deeper with Him. Pray for unity among the schools as they kick off and wrap up, and that people would arrive safely and also feel at home here. Pray that God’s hand would be upon my relationships with staff and students – good friends are so important in life and that is something I really am praying for in this season. Thank you for your support!
“The nice thing about being away from home is the feeling of excitement when returning to it.”