Friday, April 24, 2009

Thoughts on reaching the one week mark...

So as of today, I have been in Oregon for one week!  It's a funny thing, but I feel like I have been here a whole lot longer, not in a bad way, like the days have been dragging by, but in a positive way!  I feel very much myself and very much at home here.  Normally, it takes me some time to acclimate, and test the waters before I feel like I can fully be myself, but I'm happy to say that I already feel well on my way.  It has been a pretty great week and I'm really excited to be here.  I have felt so refreshed by the new friendships, the sweet conversations and the extra time that being unemployed affords me to journal, and spend time in the Word and cook...all things that had honestly slipped to the wayside as of late.  All in all, I am so glad to be here...and not just here as in location but here as in my experiences, and my state of mind.  I feel very near to the Lord and I have a satisfaction that is only found in Him.  I feel Him near in this time of transition and I am so comforted by His steadfastness as all else changes.  It's been a good week with Jesus!

I feel like there should be a lot more to say here, but for now this will have to suffice.  Life is good, God is good.

Monday, April 20, 2009

As I type this blog I am sitting on my bed (praise Jesus!) in Tigard, OR!  That's right, I've made here safely and have set up my little room.  I must say, it's good to have a room and a bed again =)  My mom and I left early Thursday morning and made the 1,000 and some odd miles trip to Oregon over two days.  Although the drive was long, it offered some gorgeous sites and good times with my mom.  The last couple of days have been spent setting up my room, running errands, exploring Portland, hiking, walking, eating, shopping, going to church, meeting new's been busy to say the least.  The weather this weekend was absolutely gorgeous; clear blue skies and temperatures in the high 70's to low 80's!  
This morning after dropping my mom off at the airport, I came home and had some time to sit and collect my thoughts and spend time with the Lord and... I am really glad to be here.  I spent some time reading some journal entries from about January onward and it was such a blessing to just see how the Lord slowly, steadily built faith and trust into my heart, how He guided and directed my desires and now how He has led me here.  It was so good to lock myself in my room for a bit and to just let my heart reflect on God's Sovereignty and goodness in my life before running off to apply for jobs, get groceries and get caught up in the minutia of my new life here in Oregon.  

I'll end this post with some encouraging verses I read this morning.  

Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them.  Are you not of more value than they?       Matt 6:26

Are not two sparrows sold for a penny?  And not one of them will fall to the ground apart from your Father.  But even the hairs of your head are numbered. Fear not, therefore; you are more value than many sparrows.        Matt 10:29-31

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Heading North...

This post is basically a letter I wrote to my friends and family about my upcoming move to Portland, OR!

I am writing to you to share some exciting news and to update you on my life. On April 16th I will be moving up to Tigard, OR, a little suburb outside of Portland. This may or may not come as a surprise to you, so I'd like to give you a little bit of the journey the Lord has had me on over the past few months, share with you my excitement and ask you for your much needed prayers during this time of transition.

Late November through about mid January was just a really tough time for me as I wrestled through some challenging things in my life and questioned a lot of things from the direction of my life to God's character and the purpose of these trials I was facing. What I learned in this time and am still learning is that the Lord is completely trustworthy and every blessing and even every suffering has a purpose and intent in our lives which is to bring about Christ-likeness within us. As hard as those couple months were, I am now thankful for them because the Lord really has healed my heart and I feel refocused and realigned to His purposes. It never really feels good to be under the chisel of the Master Artist, but the results are beautiful.

In the midst of all of this, in about mid-December, I got reconnected with Greg, a good friend of mine from college, who had moved up to Tigard to be a part of a church plant called Colossae. ( ) Talking to him about what the Lord was doing through this little church really sparked my interest and I began to look into the church, initially just out of curiosity. I started to recognize not too long after I started checking out the church and listening to some of their sermons, that my heart just felt drawn to this church and to the opportunity for ministry up in Tigard. I was also recognizing that I was not really thriving in Orange County, where I'd been living since August. I was not involved in a church or a ministry, I hadn't met many people and I was feeling pretty disconnected. Something else I realized is that no matter where I headed next, there was going to be a period of building and risk taking necessary for me to make a place feel like home for me.

In late February I took a couple days off and flew up to Portland to check out the area and the church with my friend Kelly and I had an amazing time. I loved the city and the culture and I felt like I could really see myself fitting in there. Visiting the church was really great too. Just being there for one Sunday morning it was so evident that this was a body of believers who love the Lord deeply and care deeply for others. There is just such a welcoming and caring community there. The visit to Portland really served to confirm my desires to head up there to be a part of this church community, so I began praying that the Lord would show me His direction within the month of March...and He certainly did. During the last month the Lord removed a couple of things from my life, my housing situation and my job, that had sort of become "comfort crutches" for me. These were the things that I was holding on to that were keeping me from stepping out in faith and following the Lord. A frequent thought was, "I want to go up to Portland, but I have this great job with good pay, benefits and a team of people I really love." So the Lord removed that obstacle by reducing my hours by 60%, leaving me only working two days a week. My job was no longer holding me back, and I had received the final nudge I needed to take the plunge and head North! So that brings you up to the present. I am currently living with my aunt and uncle, saving as much as I can and preparing to take this big step. The Lord has provided a sweet housing situation for me with some other folks from Colossae which I'm excited about. I don't have a job lined up, but I am trusting the Lord to provide for me every step of the way.

So that is the snapshot version of what the Lord has been doing in my life. Although I am really very excited about my move, it's obviously a tough and scary thing too. I know I am going to miss my family so much. I know that my faith is going to be stretched a ton. I know that the Lord is going to refine my character a lot, which is always trying. This is certainly one of the biggest steps of faith I've ever taken but I am trusting that with great risk comes great reward.
I hope this email helps you to know what is going on, and hopefully get excited with me about what the Lord is leading me towards. I would ask you to please keep me in your prayers, I need them! If you have any more questions, let me know because I'd love to talk to you more about this whole process. Oh and I am trying to be good about keeping my blog updated so that you all know what I'm up to and what I'm learning. You can check it out at .

Much Love,Kristen (Giesh)