My Mission Trip to France=$3800

I have raised $3,857.00 to date. My support raising is complete! Thank you!

Monday, July 26, 2010

a Photo Journal post: I went to Spain and jumped off a bridge, cont'd

Meeting up with friends in San Sebastian - yay Spain! Becky and I with our heartattack burger. Way to rep America!

I COULD NOT figure out how to get under this railing. SOOO NERVOUS. Apparently, in times of fear I become a statue. Lol.

Did it. Twas awesome. Like flying!

I just kept laughing and screaming "That was awesome!" :)

Our wonderful hosts made us pancakes WITH SYRUP for breakfast. Mandy and Nathan are proud to be Americans.

San Sebastian! is beautiful!

Marina! Look at that beautiful blue sky!

hmm...basque protests....cross the border and the basque presence gets more intense...

san sebastian theatre

Spain+France EDGE girls! Just a lovely time with some lovely people.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Puenting en España

translation: I jumped off a bridge in Spain today.
It was fun. :)

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Je voudrais une glace, s'il vous plait.

...translation: "I would like an ice cream, please." One of my most commonly used phrases...

I have found a glacier that sells ice cream made from sheep's milk, which I am not allergic to. It tastes better than regular ice cream, and I am so thankful for it.

In other news.

Life since my last update seems to have only accelerated.

Here are some fun things that occurred two weeks ago:
The girls on our team, and one long term staffer, all went to my favorite beach, Cote des Basques, to go surfing. It was awesome. The waves were small, but many, and that made surfing a little hard because you just kept getting pounded...

That same night, my teammate Mandie and I went to the beach again and saw the most beautiful sunset and waves.

We had a petanque social at the hostel. Many people came out and it was lots of fun.

After working at the Picone's, I invited Victoria and all her friends over to our apartment for a movie night. After watching the sunset from our balcony, I made them pizza and popcorn, which is rare here, and we watched a Nooma video on the story of Job. Afterwards we read the Bible, and discussed what we could learn about Job with each other. It was a really beautiful, really rich time.

Later on that week, a woman in our church in Biarritz, who is actually a missionary with another organization, had a hip-hop recital. It was in the huge ballet theatre downtown - everyone went and it was a really great time.

The week after that was a really big soccer week. Biarritz is a 30min drive from the Spanish border, and every win for Spain has been HUGE here. Dancing in the streets and such (which is pictured below). My teammate Mandie and I got to witness a little bit of this after the huge win that put Spain in the finals.
In addition, there was a Basque festival that night, so we got to see some traditional Basque dancing.

One of the weekly events that happen here at team meals. It's time when we can get together as a hostel staff family twice week and share a meal. This time has always been fun, crazy, and just wonderful - all things you can expect when feeding 15+ people, I suppose!

Another lovely thing has been Lake Marion, a beautiful lake 5min walk from the hostel. I like to run here.

The past week has been a whirlwind as well.

RoxyJam, the international longboard women's surf championship, was hosted in Biarritz. So many concerts, art shows, and festivals came out of it. It was such a fun time. I helped lead worship at Hossegor again, which was wonderful. Then we sat in our allpurpose/church room downstairs from the hostel with all our hostel guests, church members, Edge team and families, and watched Spain WIN.
What a night, vive Espagne.
As well, the two girls from a Pioneers Edge trip in Spain came to visit for a bit this week. We had a girl night and watched Gilmore Girls, dyed our teammates hair, and saw went to the local theatre to see French. Which was hilarious.
In addition, we had a fun karaoke night for our "Apero Night", or our bi-weekly hostel socials.

Pictures coming shortly.

Oh, and some things to look forward to this weekend:

I'm going to Spain for the weekend, our whole team is, to visit the Edge girls in San Sebastian. Bungee jumping off a bridge might be one of the activities included....

again, pictures coming shortly. :)


Tuesday, July 13, 2010

about sharing my testimony

Three Sundays ago at our church plant in Hossegor, a famous surf town just north of Biarritz, I had the opportunity to share my testimony with our church family.

Honestly, the whole day before, I was quite nervous.

Ok, I was out of my mind freaked.

Some thoughts that ran through my head were: "What if French people are just overwhelmed by the intensity of my story, and just think it's inappriopiate because they've only known me for three weeks?" "What if they are offended by my bad experience with Catholicism?" "What if the translation turns out wrong and they don't get the heart of what I'm trying to say?"

That day I opted out of "after morning church" lunch, and took some time by myself to write out every word of my testimony, so that it would be easier for my translator to translate. This was such a rich time, and God really helped me to articulate what I wanted to share in my testimony.

By the time we left for Hossegor that afternoon, I felt prepared, but still nervous.

Everytime I drive to Hossegor, I get car sick. I've never struggled with carsickness before, except for the last time I was in France. I think it's the winding roads and crazy roundabouts that are EVERYWHERE in this country. AND the fact that every car is a manual (jerky driving).

Needless to say, everytime I get to Hossegor, I'm on the verge of throwing up, shaky-legged, pale faced, needing to sit down and drink water for AT LEAST half an hour. It's miserable.

That Sunday was no different.

But God is so good. My dear French friend, who is fluent in English, Audrey, came to bring me some water, and I got to share my testimony with her. She then agreed to translate for me, which was SUCH an answer to prayer, because she knows my heart and I was confident would communicate everything I would want to share with this church family.

I didn't sing worship that week, which was a relief. After worship, Christophe prayed for me, and I shared my testimony with our church. It all went well. Praise the Lord.

One of our hostel guests, Oliver, came to hear me speak and to check out the church.
It was so great to get to know Oliver, who lives in London. He said he had a lot to think about when it came to Christianity, but that he really appreciated the beauty and the honesty in my story.

The response after the church service was amazing.
Pauline, a dear friend of Victoria's, whom I've shared about before, just came up to me and shared how she loved my story and how it was good for her. Tears in her eyes, she said "I wish I could tell you more, but I don't know how to in English, but thank you."
It was so good to just hug her.

Helen is another dear friend of Victoria and Pauline's, and she also shared with me how moved she was by her story. She shared how God really spoke to her through it and how she was convinced she is in the process of understanding God's love for her.

Caroline, another dear friend I've made at our Hossegor church who's my age, shared how my NAME had been in her head ever since the first day I met her. She said it was weird, how she was always thinking about my name, but that after I shared my story, she knew it was because God wanted her to listen to me and to the truth that He is good and He loves her.

It was such a beautiful night in such beautiful community.

Thank you dearly to all who prayed.