Brazil / Christianity / God-sized dream / grace / missions / Uncategorized

God-Sized Dreams–How to change the world one moment at a time

justicedragonfly.jpgrio branco rio branco2 rio branco 3 riobranco 4 riobranco 5jude.jpgselahface.jpg

I still remember the day I arrived in my new (then) home for a year in Brazil.

After a week long vacation in Rio de Janeiro, I boarded a plane destination Rio Branco, a city in the Amazon region of Brazil.

A place with thousands of clandestine drug-running airstrips, where poverty oppresses, a region with thousands of unreached people groups, some of whom have never even made contact with outside world.

As the plane landed, I looked out and saw dusk settling over a single strip airport surrounded by jungle.

I quickly found my driver and my new roommate and loaded up in the car for the drive home.

I breathed deep and took in the smells: burning wood mixed with damp dirt and humidity.

This wasn’t how I’d expected the jungle to look. I imagined palm trees and tropical animals, but what I saw was orange colored dirt roads, surrounded by thick jungle. Shacks lined the streets along with the occasional corner market that looked more like a backyard project than a place I’d buy food. Wide-eyed children played soccer and mothers carried babies.

My heart beat outside my chest. I was in love.

I woke every morning at 5 am for a run through the outskirts of town. I’d watch the town come to life with the sun rise. Wood shutters opening, shirtless children and bare feet slapping the ground from wood paneled homes into dirt filled yards, men climbing onto rickety old bikes in torn shoes, the bustle of women going to the market before the oppressive humid heat paralized movement.

Our opened aired church building held meetings that resounded so full of life and centered our days. The same neighbors that wore torn shirts and flip flops during the week came dressed in their Sunday best. Their warmth radiated with their praise.

I watched these people with hands raised and hearts aflame and I knew what kind of conditions many of them lived in. Their circumstance didn’t dictate their joy. People were hungry for God in a way I’d never seen before, and people were open to the Gospel in a way that I’d never experienced.

It’s been 13 years since I walked those streets and I still miss it. I miss the people, the chaos, the life I found in a hard place.

Now I live in tension. My heart longs for people in other nations, but my greatest mission field is right here. My greatest joy happens right here in my home grown God-sized mission field where I can choose to either spend my days discontent and waiting for the next great thing, or sing a hallelujah chorus over my everyday and pour myself over this place God has me and let Him fill me up over and over again.

That’s really what we do, pour out until we think there’s nothing left, then He fills us back up again. Every diaper, dish, laundry load, midnight cuddle and scraped knee is an opportunity to choose joy, walk in grace for today and pour into little souls that will do greater things.

We are everyday world changers because every moment is a ministry opportunity.

We can change the world one moment at a time.

We live for an audience of One where small obedience grows into character that shapes big destiny.

And we wait.

We pour out like water and with grace He fills. Everything we are fights to make every moment a grace filled one because today He is here and this moment is wrapped into our God-sized dream.

These are not small beginnings. Faithfulness in the small things leads to God-sized destinies.

“Don’t despise small beginnings for the Lord rejoices to see the work begin.”–Zech 4:10 NLT

To read more about God-sized dreams click here or A Little Girl and a God-Sized Dream click here. It will inspire you.

Holley Gerth asked us to highlight an organization that we think is worth trumpeting, so mine is Project Amazon. They are church planting and reaching thousands of people groups in Brazil with no current Christian witness. My personal belief is that one of the greatest ways to change a city is to plant a life-giving local church. This is what Project Amazon does.

I’m linked up over here today.

Photos 1-4 credited to Eduardo Arraes.

Photo credit 5.

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22 thoughts on “God-Sized Dreams–How to change the world one moment at a time

  1. Hi Kirsten, Beautiful pictures, great post. Your heart is obviously on the far away mission field and your life is on “your home grown God sized mission field.” Why not take your home grown mission field to where your heart is and have the best of both worlds. I love your posts. God bless

    • Thanks. Well, we’ve been here and I’m content and God just hasn’t opened the door for full time yet. But, we pray about it all the time. I trust that The Lord will fulfill the desires of my heart no matter where He leads us …whether here or in a foreign mission field. Also, I do believe a missionary heart is a heart for people whether that is right where I am or in another country, and my heart is definitely for people wherever I am. Love your encouragement. So glad you like my posts. That blesses me!! Blessings to you!

  2. Hello! Everything about this post is well said! Every time I come in contact with people who question why God is calling me to “go unto all the world” the thing that comes to mind is that we are all missionaries in our own specific way. I am no more of a missionary than another Jesus loving individual. We are all called to be missionaries no matter where our “mission field” may be. One quote that has always stuck with me is that “Mission work is not a calling for certain individuals, but for everyone who names the name of Christ”. So in a sense, we all are “called” to go unto all the world and preach the gospel on a daily basis, whether it be in Brazil, Africa or in our household. We are the keepers of the Gospel and it is meant to be spread throughout the world. Thankful for your encouraging posts! They always keep me uplifted 🙂 Blessings to you are your family!

    • Yes and amen to all of that! Well said. Yes, I believe the same thing….we’re all missionaries and we’re all called to preach the Gospel. That is awesome. So glad these posts keep you uplifted! That blesses me. Have a great evening!

    • Hey Lori,

      Lioness Arising: Wake up and Change Your World. Just get the book….not the curriculum or anything else. I think you’ll love it. Hope this helps! If not, we can talk tomorrow.

  3. Simply beautiful! Makes me want to go there too! But I know that it is the Lord who has placed me here in Italy, so will work with all my heart here where I’m planted.

  4. Hi
    Reading your posts is inspiring and refreshes my faith, so really you are being a missionary to all of us who read your blog! Look at me away in Yorkshire, England, feeling anew the wish to follow Jesus closer and if I do that, I will be a missionary to those around me – so thanks to you, the Word is being spread! x

  5. Stunning post, complete with moving photos, my dear! This is my favorite part: “We are everyday world changers because every moment is a ministry opportunity.” I rewrote that on a piece of paper and popped it on my dashboard. What an awesome reminder that no matter what it is we are doing, we can do it (big or small) for the glory of the amazing God we serve! THANK YOU for this today!! 😉

  6. my heart so agrees with all you have said. we lived in uganda for a year and I fell in love with missions. I have since been to India and we have launched an organisation to empower education in villages, but being a mum to three little kids I stay home, and at times my heart so longs to be over there. But you are so right, its about making the most of the here, its about seeing where I am as a mission field and doing all I can to bring the love of Jesus to those around us.

  7. I have a feeling I’m going to be rereading this post frequently. I need to–how quickly I get caught up in frenetic energy and forget the vital work I have to do in this moment, with these small ones. (by the way, I have a dear friend who blogs at afterbelly.com, and your writing, pics, and missional heart remind me of hers–her name is Nathalie.)

    Also, a tech question: what software are you using for your photo editing? I am a total newbie at this; I’d make my blogs just have words, if I could.

    Blessings to you!

    • I’ll have to check out your friend’s blog! So glad you stopped by! So true….easy to get caught up in the tyranny of the moment and miss the important things. Happens to me. I’ll email you with details and info in photo editing. Blessings!

  8. I have been a missionary for 6 years. Raising family is the hardest mission though. We need to encourage one another as much as we can. Thank you for your post!

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