Wednesday, June 02, 2004

Amsterdam update's already been 3 days!
A lot has been going on and I have been really enjoying myself on this trip. I have been staying with Jeremy Isom at his house while his wife is away on a trip to the states. He has an awesome home right in the center of Amsterdam. So I can walk to everywhere I need to go. We have been hanging out each night over coffee and talking like a bunch of conversation starved women :)
We are both at similar crossroads in life and ministry and have had a lot to talk about. This trip we have really been able to cut through all the superficial stuff and really talk about our lives and ministries, family and marriages. Good stuff! Definitely a God thing. I look forward to seeing this relationship don't get a lot of these kinds of friendships in ministry, so it's refreshing.

I have been hanging out with Christa too. Again having a lot of real deep conversations and planning the weekend retreat that I am speaking at. I went to her Alpha group last night which is the group that will be at the retreat. It was really awesome. There is about 20 of them form various different spiritual backgrounds. All of them are there at this course to learn about Christianity. There are many at various levels of commitment to Jesus and some exploring or just looking. It was a great night. We watched a video on "God's guidance" and then broke up and discussed it. I had a lot of good conversations and was able to share my testimony with a young adult Dutch guy who said he was a believer in God but not yet a believer in Jesus. The night was rich and it looks like its going to be a great weekend.

Pray for me though because the topic of the Holy Spirit is a sensitive one over her and there is a lot of misunderstanding and apprehension about spiritual things.
Plus I most likely will be sharing with a Dutch interpreter and that always is a challenge in communication.

During the meeting I had a really interesting thing happen.
a young man name Danny was sharing some of his struggles to the small group and in his conversation he mentioned that he needed God to just give him a hug. When he said that, the Holy Spirit leaped within me. I was instantly moved and kind of surprised my the suddenness of it. This morning while I was studying the alpha material for the weekend there was a portion in the study that said:
Being filled with the Spirit is like walking with your father hand in hand and suddenly he stops and looks at you, leans down and picks you up and hugs you! it's like a smothering embrace of love form your heavenly father. I instantly had a confirmation that the Lord is going to "hug" us this weekend. It was really a cool little thing. I can't wait to share it with Danny this weekend after God fills him with His Spirit!

Wait till I show the pictures of the YWAM cafe in Amsterdam center. A way cool cafe, totally modern, and they are reaching out and touching all kinds of people and they serve beer. LOL! Only in Amsterdam! I laughed my butt off...oh how people would freak in the states. Ministry is quite different here! The neatest people though. I will be staying at the YWAM (Youth With A Mission) building that has the cafe later this week. I met the lead guy(BART) who runs the youth ministries for YWAM here in Amsterdam, he is letting me stay there for free...very nice price indeed!

I will be heading up to Norway next Tuesday-Thursday and be staying in OSLO. I've always had a heart for the Scandinavian countries and have an awesome window of opportunity that just came up, so we will see what is going to happen. Jeremy is trying to hook me up with a leader there who runs a ministry called SUB-CHURCH, an edgy alternative ministry run by a bunch of Christian head bangers. Just my style!

So keep me in prayer...I already feel great and the sore throat is gone that was plaguing me for the first 3 days. Thank God...I thought I might of had strep because Austin came down with it. But today is good.

Well, thank you for your prayers...
I'll write more about my walk through Amsterdam the other night and how it was like walking through Dante's inferno! Very tragic and surreal...

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