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Jewel in Cambodia Scarves for Cambodia Journals for the Journey

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

A Journey..

Last Saturday morning, 500+ IWU students and faculty/staff met in the early morning to walk 3.5 miles to the downtown Marion square, praying with each step.  I prayed for the economy of Marion, for boldness in the Christian community, for the arms of IWU to reach far into every street, for the churches to be open and loving, and for the hurts and needs of our community.  I prayed for organizations like Marion Inner City Outreach, the Grant County Rescue Mission, the YMCA, St. Martin's Community Center, the Boys and Girls Club, Family Services... 

Everyone was encouraged to donate $20, and we made over $12,000!

It was so awesome to walk and pray with so many people!  It was so bitter cold too!  We were escorted by Marion police officers, and traffic was stopped at each intersection.  I just wonder what people were thinking when they saw us!

Monday, March 30, 2009

David After Dentist

This is really really funny...

I don't think my sister would mind me telling this story (isn't that a great way to open a story?!  haha!)  But a few years ago, Jessie had her wisdom teeth removed.  That afternoon I was taking a shower, and Jessie had to desperately use the restroom.  I wouldn't normally let anyone into the bathroom while I'm showering, but I made an exception for the girl, just this one time.  Well as she was standing at the sink, she fainted.  I was naked and wet in the shower, and wasn't sure what to do?  Splash water on her?  I don't know!  My mom was waiting in the hall and was yelling at me to make sure she was ok.  I wasn't naked in the shower!  On no condition would I come out!  You see Jessie had fainted against the door, therefore my parents couldn't get in.  Well Jessie finally came to enough to skooch herself away from the door, and my mom got her into the hallway - where Jessie promptly fainted again!  Oh boy.  Mom yelled for Dad to carry her back to the couch, (he was mowing the yard, and I'm sure he smelled like quite the treat for Jessie.)  End of story.  =)

Friday, March 27, 2009

I stand amazed by a miracle.

I wrote this Sunday, September 9, 2007, but I wanted to re-post it.

For the duration of one long and intense week I felt strong pain and experienced great GREAT discomfort in the lid of my right eye. The reasons are unknown. Perhaps I sliced it while applying eyeliner, or it was possibly due to sleeping in my contacts for two nights, or maybe, yet improbably, I was bitten by a vampire in the night. Nonetheless, I was hurting. Every hour on the hour I applied medicine, but there was no progress, no healing. In my pain, I was discouraged. I wanted my mom, the nurse, who woman always heals my wounds, to fix it quickly. She would know what to do; unfortunately, that was not an option.

Sparing you some details... I awoke and struggled to open my eye. It was difficult and it was disgusting, but I persevered. Once again – did I have another option? The process of inserting my contacts was gruesome.  (I am legally blind without contacts.)  I cried; I cried like a baby. I got in the shower and said “God, I’m giving this to you. I know You can do this.” In that moment, I had faith that could move mountains. Almost without thought, scripture verses were constantly approaching to mind. “No one is like you, O Lord; you are great, and your name is mighty in power.” And “O Lord, You are a refuge from the storm. You are a shelter from the rain and the heat.” Also, “If you believe, you will receive whatever you ask for in prayer." And, “You are the God who performs miracles; you display your power among the peoples.” He is the Great Physician; He is the Lord who heals. I have seen the works of His hands. I had my eyes closed in prayer for about ten minutes, and when they were opened - there was no hurt, there was no irritation, and my vision was clear. There was no doubt in my mind that God had reached down His mighty hands and touched my eye. “He is the one who is worthy of your praise, the one who has done mighty miracles that you yourselves have seen.”

I still remember this morning.  I remember standing in the shower, crying.  It hurt SO bad, and I was really discouraged; but my faith was strong, and I know that is why HE touched me.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

A new look...

Yep!  I'm wearing my contacts.  2nd semester last year I started having horrible pain in my eyes and I've worn my glasses almost everyday since May.  Just recently I have begun wearing my contacts again.. every 3rd or 4th day, just for hours at a time.

 You may also notice that my blog has a new feel... let me know what you think!  Check out the pictures on the right, just below my BLOGGERS:: links.  They are from all over the world! 

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

37 days and counting...

I leave for Cambodia in days!!

I can't wait...

To lead my team.

To see my friend Chamnol!

To visit Angkor Wat!

To travel the countryside!

To ride an elephant!

To see the beautiful children!

and play with them!

and take their pictures!

To visit the Wesleyan churches.

To teach English.

To see the students at the Wesleyan Bible College.

To learn.

To laugh.

To love.

To ride in the van for hours.

To share my testimony.

To see God working.

and to make memories - 

memories that I will never forget.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Nahun Zeleya

Since sometime last Fall, around the beginning of October, I have been friends with a guy in Honduras. I went to Honduras a few years ago and worked at El Sembrador, a boys' boarding school in Olancho; and Nahun and I must have a mutual friend on facebook from there, because he added me as a friend on facebook, and we have been talking online since then. We used to talk almost every evening on the weekdays, as he worked in an office with great internet capabilities. He was a great assistance for my Spanish, because we always talk in Spanish. He asked me once back in January if I thought coming to America "wet-back" (without legal documentation) was a sin, and I wasn't sure what to tell him. Well on February 13 he crossed the boarder to live with his brother Texas, and raise money to send to his family in Honduras. He was very hopeful for an opportunity to help his family, and sought God in everything. Well, evidently he was caught, and held in prison for 20 days before he was returned to Honduras just today. He said he wasn't treated very well, but he wasn't abused. We didn't talk long, because I was rather stressed with this huge exegesis paper due tomorrow afternoon, and my very-important-for-my-grade-if-I-want-to-stay-on-the-Dean's-list economics test in the morning, so Nun and I will happily finish our conversation tomorrow. I am disappointed because his dreams were crushed, but I am glad that we can finally talk again. We hadn't spoken since the day before he came to America. I'm very curious to hear what else he has to say...

Because everyone like's pictures...

Nahun (red tie) with his family and friend's at the non-denominational church, where his dad (grey suit) pastors, in Tegucigalpa.

Nahun (on one knee) with his brothers and cousins on Thanksgiving, or maybe Christmas.

Nahun (with Christmas tree)

Don't worry Mom (and Joni), he doesn't have my address, and doesn't know my english name. =)

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Footloose and fancy-free??

So here is the story.. I've been at my desk since 5:45 on Friday evening.  I've left only twice to eat, though once I did take the long way back because it has been marvelously beautiful outside, and I did go to church this morning, then to Grandmom's for lunch.  So how many hours is that?  Like way more than 24 I'm pretty sure.  I've been working on an exegesis paper on James 4:1-10 for Inductive Bible Study.  I just started Thursday night, and it's due on Tuesday.
I have been so stressed.  It's ridiculous.  I had two of the worst mental breakdowns I have ever had.  It's been craaazy in here!  I waited all week for a weekend, and didn't realize that I would spend all weekend on my booty at my desk - flipping through Bible concordances, and from reference page, to reference page, to reference page.
Remember my friend Bonaventure?  He is refugee from Rwanda, and a student of nursing here at IWU.  He is taking my mom now and she is super hard (super hard.)  He has anxiety problems, and before his last test Jessie and I baked him alot of cookies and well -- evidently they're lucky cookies, because he scored the highest grade in the class and brought his average up significantly!  So tonight, Jessie and I took a half hour to make him cookies.  We also wrote him a sweet note.  Jessie remembered 1 Peter 5:7 and I was like VWA-LAA, perfect. "Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you."  I later forgot the reference and when I did a little keyword search, I found this::

You who are young, make the most of your youth.
Relish your youthful vigor.
Follow the impulses of your heart.
If something looks good to you, pursue it.
But know also that not just anything goes;
You have to answer to God for every last bit of it.
Live footloose and fancy-free—
You won't be young forever.
Youth lasts about as long as smoke.
Ecclesiastes 11:9-10 (The Message)

Whew!  I feel a little better.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Evidently I have a pronunciation problem..

....and evidently I have never, before Thursday, said the word mustache out-loud - BECAUSE I CAN'T!  One of the male dorm's on campus is celebrating Mustache March, and I was trying to explain this to Jessie and Traci, and all I got was laughter.  Well, it wasn't funny until they evidenced how wrongly I say the word mustache.  It sounds right to me.. but it's more like moostash, and when I try really hard to correctly pronounce the 1st syllable, it comes out more like mustush.
Now my sister JUST pointed out that I have always said her name wrong.  Evidently it's JEssie, not JUssie.

Friday, March 20, 2009


The last few days at work I have been scanning these beautiful pictures from the good ole 80s. I'm not sure why... but I'm doing it.  Just thought I would share a few of my favorites with you...

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Follow up..

Yesterday morning and afternoon, I definitely felt like everything possible was going wrong. But it ended better than it started! After emailing back and forth all afternoon, Mari Howard, who told me in the morning that our fundraiser had to be rescheduled, finally realized that the event that was "in conflict" with ours, was indeed the event that we were partnered with -- and the event did indeed happen, and went better than I expected. However, my girls are still quite worried about their funds, so you can put Loren, Zoey, Aimee, Hannah, Ashton, and Angela on your prayer list!

Something else that happened! I went to visit one of my very favorite people on campus, Bill Miller, my Spanish professor from last semester.  He made me feel much better about my day!  For this and many other reasons, he is one of my most favorite persons on campus!  Unfortunately, the solution to one of yesterday's problems (the schedule conflict) forces me to drop his class.  =/

For dinner, all the World Impact missions leaders went to Olive Gardens in Kokomo.  I spent a good part of the evening talking with Norm Wilson (Intercultural Studies professor), and Bud and Carol Bence (Mom's friends, and also work at IWU) about Cambodia, and missions, and my future.  Also, we had a nice cooling rain last night.

Also, I found a sweet little note at my Cambodia table, from Miss Elli Vinluan that said "Hi Jewel, Love Elli."  I love that little girl!

Then this morning, I was able to sleep until 9:45 because I DIDN'T have to get up early for a lunch appointment, or anything else!  It was fantastic.  I took my time getting ready, checked my email, turned up the Gaithers while I got ready.. it was nice. =)

Needless to say.. there are good days and there are bad days!  By blogging, I'm choosing to forget about yesterday and remember today!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Let's make a running tally...

-- a running tally of all the bad things that are happening today.

-I overslept my alarm by 3 hours.
-In carrying my mail from my mailbox to class, I lost an envelope of $$$.  I retraced my steps and didn't find it.
-I just realized I need gas and I have to drive to Kokomo tonight.  Either I cut out of work early, which I did yesterday, or I'm late to my dinner meeting.
-I received an email this morning from conference services that said our fundraiser tonight (which we have been planning for 3 weeks) is canceled because the space was requested by something bigger and more prominent.
-My advisor failed to mention that 2 classes I need next semester are overlapped and my only option is to not take 1 of the classes.

The good things:
It's a beautiful day.
Even though I missed the prayer walk because I overslept, and I'm skipping chapel -- God still loves me.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Just a picture..

This is one of my favorite pictures ever.. I had forgotten about it until recently.  I think I probably posted it the day it was taken, but here it is again.  It was taken in Kansas, last July.  Kiara, then almost 6 months, is my goddaughter.  I had just met her 2 or 3 days prior to this.  We were hanging out in our hotel room on my laptop and when I realized she was looking at me, I tried taking a picture.. but it turned out like this!

Here is another similar occasion from a later date:

I wonder how she's growing now...

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Baby Jackson

One of my best friends from high school had a baby early yesterday morning. His name is Corwin Jackson.  I love babies and I love Anna and I'm hoping that I can visit them later this evening.

Here we go again....

...back to the grind!  Sadly, Spring Break has ended and I am back in classes at IWU.  I had a good vacation in GC.  I stayed home with my sister and parents, and didn't do much of anything.  I made it out a couple times to dinner with friends, which was nice; went to the Creation Museum, which was good; worked out 3 times, which was necessary; and rested, relaxed, and rejuvenated myself, which was very nice!  I didn't do enough homework, but I did get 1 large project finished and that is a good feeling!!
It is Wednesday, which explains why I am blogging so early in the morning.  Every Wednesday morning at 6:30 I go on a prayer walk across campus.  This morning almost 40 students gathered together with Dr. Lo - an incredible number!  We prayed over the Townhouses and specifically for 2 students, Whitney Reynolds and Samuel Fowler, who have serious physical concerns.  We then went to the PPAC, where we have chapel at 10 and 11 o'clock.  We surrounded him in prayer as he will present a very large vision in chapel later today.  On Saturday March 28th, the Dean of the Chapels Office has organized a Community Prayer Walk, and Dr. Lo is hoping for 1000 students and faculty to represent IWU to Marion and go on a prayer walk through the Marion area.  He is also praying that $10-20,000 be given as an offering to our needy community.
Coming back, I feel overwhelmed, weary, and anxious.  In addition to a long list of school projects, I am feeling heavy pressure and responsibility for leading the trip to Cambodia.  Yesterday, I read in Psalms 46, "Be still and know that I am God." and in Matthew 6:33, "But seek 1st His Kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well." Beside that I had written, 'The spiritual person puts the care of their soul before ALL things'  So today, I am resting in His promises, and trusting (but quitting) all my work and responsibilities to Him.

Picture taken by friend Paul Garverick II in Rio Bravo, MX

Saturday, March 07, 2009

Iris Ministries Sudan

I received this email this morning from Michele, Field Ministry Coordinator in Sudan::
Beloved- a quick email to ask you to pray… the LRA attacked killing 5 people and abducting an unconfirmed number from a village about 2 miles from our compound. Movement is now restricted and people have been urged to take up their “pangas” (machetes) creating another security risk. We are not to our knowledge in any immediate danger as the rebels seem to be moving in the opposite direction and only really attack at night. We are praying. Please pray with us. Tension and fear are running high. Our obvious concern is for the safety of our children and our team… we are worshiping in the face of hate and fear. Much love in Jesus, Michele

My friend Jennie Telfer works with Michele at the center.  Iris Ministries is similar to an orphanage, but is more like a village of small homes filled with family units of 10-15 children and a mama.  Read Jennie's blog about the LRA's movement nearby, HERE.
Please pray for Jennie, the ministry compound, and those in the path of the ruthless rebel army.


Wednesday, March 04, 2009

A woman rather confused..

I went to the dentist this morning for the regular cleaning, and the lady was asking me about my summer plans.  Now, I consider myself a very friendly and sociable person, but, when I'm in the dentist chair, I do struggle carrying my share on the conversation.  I think it has something to do with ten fingers and two tools in my mouth.
Anyways... I told her that I will be teaching English for six weeks in Cambodia and she was rather impressed.  She asked, "Teaching English, huh.  So, you speak Spanish pretty well then don't you?"
"Yes ma'am I do... (but NOT in Cambodia.)"

Cambodia is in Asia, a country very far from any spanish-speaking nations.  The people of Cambodia speak Khmer.  It looks more like this:::