Pressing in to Trial

It’s 7:32AM on a Monday where I am right now. Where am I, you ask? I’m actually in the Czech Republic at our Josiah Venture headquarters for our weeklong training seminar of Winter Academy. For a week each January we have a week of diving into our systems, discipleship tools, and the life of Christ to prepare and train for the work we have set before us. Honestly, it’s a pretty full and exhausting work; but for the purpose, it’s more than worth it. We drove here yesterday right after church. With only one stop for a hip-hop (gas station) coffee and McDonalds (truly the only option on the road; I’ve eaten more McDonalds living in Europe than my whole life combined), the drive was only 7 hours from Zagreb to Malenovice.

This week was an unusual one…and I have a lot to be thankful for. I saw God’s goodness, presence and friendship in new ways. The funny thing about life in Europe is you can be in multiple countries in just a matter of hours…that’s what my week looked like.

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Health Problems & God’s Help

Last week, I may have shared that I’ve been experiencing some medical problems. This Monday-Wednesday I had to travel to Vienna to see a specialist and doctor to look further into my health problems. The road ahead is long but I’m really grateful for this doctor and her care. Dealing with health problems on your own is never fun…but to do it in a foreign country is another battle. I often travel on my own for work and I’m used to “dealing with things on my own”. It’s easy for me to have this “I’m strong and independent” kind of attitude. But I started to realize the ugliness, self-dependence and pride that was in that. So lately my prayer has been that I would be dependent on Jesus, asking Him for help and aware of my deep need for Him.

In this, I saw God’s goodness in His evident presence, reminders that He’s my strength & good doctors. I’ve sensed this year will be one of deeper dependence on the Lord in ways I don’t expect.

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Adventures, Beauty, & Enjoying

This week I had many opportunities to enjoy and rest. Whether it was through my daily walk & thanking God for the sunshine and scenery or art, I was filled with so much thankfulness this week for the opportunities I had to spend with Jesus. There’s many experiences, adventures, and daily-life activities I often do alone so I really only get to share those with Jesus…and it’s a great joy 🙂

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Good food & fun encounters! 

Cooking is such a stress reliever for me. I love cooking for other people, I love getting creative in the kitchen…it’s such a joy. On one of the nights I was in Vienna for my doctors appointments, I grabbed a quick dinner in a little hole in the wall place. I journaled & wrote while I was there. Two older gentlemen from Russia sat down next to me, probably in their 50s and 60s, and we spoke broken Croatian and Russian to each other. Croatian and Russian are somewhat similar so we could understand each other a bit. I love these fun encounters that often happen on a daily basis.

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Biblical resources, training, sermons, etc.

I’m so so thankful for podcasts, biblical teaching & resources. My church is 100% in Croatian, so being in process of learning Croatian, I don’t get much out of the weekly sermon. So every week I carve out time to listen to a sermon or do something to be spiritually fed in that way. I’ve also been loving this album from Leeland. I’d highly recommend these podcasts and resources!

Thanks for tuning in to another week, being a part of this, and giving thanks to God with me!

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