Mission Experience–The Pre-Trip Stories

I love YD!

It was a wonderful time of the year…The most wonderful time of the year, if you ask me, although it has absolutely nothing to do with Christmas or Winter and everything to do with Summer. Any ideas what I’m talking about? YD camp, of course! 🙂

To catch you up on events:

Early in 2012 I received an information brochure and application for Mission Experience from Young Disciple. I read over it and asked my Mom what she thought (She totally thought I should go!) and then placed it in my drawer. I wanted to forget about it because the idea of going overseas was terrifying.

Yet I was constantly nagged by the thought that this was something God wanted me to do. This nagging got unbelievably worse when I went to YD camp last year.  I did my best, I could not forget it.

Now for the story…’Twas the most wonderful time of the year:

I arrived at camp on Sunday extremely excited! It was an amazing two weeks (of course!), but all throughout those weeks I was trying very hard to ignore everything shouting at me to surrender to God and apply to go on ME (Mission Experience). I finally did that when, during choir, Mr. Tony asked which of us would like to introduce the song “I Will Go”.

No one else was volunteering–and I certainly wasn’t! But there’s something about wanting to do things to make others happy that is very powerful in driving a person to do things they didn’t want to do. 😉 I nervously raised my hand, agreeing to speak in front of way-too-many-people for me to stay in my comfort zone.

He put my name down for the program Sabbath afternoon and I was stuck. If there is one thing I won’t do, it’s tell you to do something I refuse to do myself. So if I have to remind you  of the Great Commission and urge you to go and fulfill the mission Christ has for you, I also have to give in and fulfill my mission.

The thought constantly in my mind for the next couple days was: “How can I introduce the song ‘I Will Go’ without saying ‘I Will Go’?” You would not believe how ridiculously hard I tried to figure that out–from asking Mr. Tony, to asking my unit counselor and even the head girl’s counselor…It was unavoidable.

So that Sabbath afternoon, as I introduced the song for choir, in my heart I told God “I will go.”.  As soon as I got home, I filled out the application and sent it in. Long story short, I was accepted and started on the fundraising journey.

Fundraising:

In the beginning I was very excited to see what the Lord would do in and through me–the miracles He would work–as I sought to raise the funds needed for the trip. But, as so often happens, I soon became discouraged by the disbelief surrounding me and began to wonder if it was really possible.

A few people had asked me what would happen if I wasn’t able to raise the whole amount that I was supposed to raise and I had to tell them I had no idea. I told my parents this and they advised me that I should call YD and ask them. I didn’t really want to (have I mentioned that I’m terrible at phone calls?), but ended up calling anyway.

I’m so thankful that most–if not all–of YD staff are perfectly willing to have mostly one-sided conversations, if you can’t figure out what to say! I tried to call Mr. Ted, but he wasn’t there so I just called the main office number and ended up talking to Mr. (Will) Evert. Here’s the gist of our extremely encouraging conversation.

Conversation:

I asked Mr. Evert what would happen if I was unsuccessful in my fundraising and he told me that no one had ever been unable to go because of a lack of funds–some raise more than they needed and some less, but either way God provides. I told him that was encouraging and he said “Oh, so you need encouragement too, huh?” We ended up having a rather long conversation during which he shared some awesome things with me. I’d like to share the two which have really stuck in my head ever since.
1. “When we give ourselves wholly to God and in our work follow His directions He makes Himself responsible for its accomplishment. He would not have us conjecture as to the success of our honest endeavors. Not once should we even think of failure! We are to cooperate with One who knows no failure!” –Christ’s Object Lessons, pg. 363

2.”Work hard…Pray hard…Trust hard…And God will answer prayers!” –Mr. Evert

So when we give ourselves completely to God, working faithfully for Him, cooperating with Him through prayer, and trusting in His power, God will answer our prayers–through Him we CANNOT fail!! That’s awesome!

After that I went back to my fundraising with a renewed hope and energy. God provided in so many ways and on Sunday, March 26, I was on my way with an amazing team to experience my very first overseas mission trip. Scary, but amazing…And that’s another story for another day.

Until next time,

Stay Faithful!

Samantha

Quick Update

Earlier this evening, as I was sitting on my bed looking over some papers, my Mom called my name. I jumped up and went out to the living room to see what she needed. “The last time you updated your blog was a YEAR ago?!?!?” She had called me because she was wondering if I’d like her to put a link to my blog in a new post that she was writing for Hasten Home. I said “sure” about the link, but I honestly hadn’t realized it’d been THAT LONG since I last posted an update on here!

 

So real quick in 2013 (my last update was posted in January)…

January, February and most of March were spent fundraising for Mission Experience. That was a very faith-trying experience, in and of itself, which makes for some awesome stories I’ll have to write about later…

The end of March-the end of April were spent in the Philippines on Mission Experience (which will soon have at least one blog post dedicated to telling the amazing experiences involved…)

June…What did I do in June? 🙂

July: I was once again blessed by the awesome opportunity to attend YD camp! Maybe I’ll write a separate post about that, too…

August: Well, it’s August now and I’m currently trying to update my poor, dear blog friends… 😉 Really, I’m praying and seeking, trying to discover God’s will for my life. Seems college is not currently in the plans, as much as I’ve wanted it to be for the last couple years. I have an idea about what He might want me to do now so I’m moving forward with that. We’ll see, and I’ll let you know if anything works out. “Trust in the Lord with all thine heart…And He shall direct your paths.” (Proverbs 3:5,6)

 

Well, I guess I should sign off for now and get some sleep…I’ll be sure and write some interesting posts soon! (Now I’ve said it and I absolutely HAVE to… :/ )

 

Until next time,

Samantha

 

My First Sermon

Written October 22, 2012

It was a lovely Sabbath afternoon. My brother and I were out hiking with some church friends in the beautiful Oregon countryside. Most of the group was enjoying the walk and scenery with Mrs. Witcombe, our Pastor’s wife, but Jonathon and I had opted for walking faster and enjoying pleasant conversation with the Pastor. Pastor Witcombe decided that perhaps it would be a good idea to stop and rest awhile so that the rest of the group could catch up a bit. Well, as we stood there Pastor mentioned that he would like Jonathon to do a sermon at our church sometime. This was an okay conversation–I agreed, he should! As the group caught up that specific subject was dropped, but as we started walking again Pastor said “You should do it too, Samantha!” Ummm…bad turn of events! In my mind, I was thinking “NO WAY!”

Fast forward about a year. I’m spending time on my knees Sabbath morning, my 16th birthday. This really is a long story, but I’ll summarize it for you. (Watch the video linked to at the end of this post for the whole story. 😉 ) For a couple years now I’ve struggled with the subject of music. This specific morning I’d been battling with God as He prompted me to destroy the last bits of it that were still in my life. When, at last, I surrendered I was at such peace that I told God that there was nothing that could keep me from sharing it. Ummm…remember the story this post started with???

So, I gave in and wrote my first sermon. After a couple weeks of “Am I sure I want to do this???” I wrote an email to my Pastor asking if he still wanted me to do that. Silly question. His response? “Yes indeed!” 🙂

He got me put into the schedule and last week I shared my first sermon. I was nervous at first, but by the time I stood up-God had put His peace in my heart. He always blesses when we submit our lives to Him and follow His guidance! What an awesome God we serve!

If you’re interested in listening to the message, it’s on YouTube.

Now Whatcha Up To?

Once again it’s been way too long since I posted on my blog…So I’m going to do another picture summary of my recent life. Besides, they’re fun to do and I’m told they’re fun to read. Anyway, here goes… 🙂

For one, I’ve gotten a “new” laptop. This one isn’t quite so skilled in trying my patience! 😉

 

Remember how I told you I was memorizing a canvass for YD camp? Now Jonathon and I are doing local canvassing–fundraising for college.

 

Practicing music when I can...

Practicing music when I can…

Hanging out with Jonathon and his friend...

Hanging out with Jonathon and his friend…



I believe I have all the funds needed for Mission Experience!!! This is a pic of me with a bag I got for the trip...

I believe I have all the funds needed for Mission Experience!!! This is a pic of me with a bag I got for the trip…

I just love this pic of the kitties. Puddles on the left, and Sherbert on the right.

I just love this pic of the kitties. Puddles on the left, and Sherbert on the right.

Work, when I have the chance. (These hawks were circling above us while Jonathon and I were painting some weeks ago. There were at least twice as many as are in this picture!)

Work, when I have the chance. (These hawks were circling above us while Jonathon and I were painting some weeks ago. There were at least twice as many as are in this picture!)

Another picture I took at work. This garter snake was fun to play with. (Don't worry, I don't usually take pics at work...Just once in a while. ;) )

Another picture I took at work. This garter snake was fun to play with. (Don’t worry, I don’t usually take pics at work…Just once in a while. 😉 )

Presents WP

Gathering and wrapping presents…

Having fun with "photo shoots" with my little siblings...(It was quite a lot of work to collect all those acorns!!)

Having fun with “photo shoots” with my little siblings…(It was quite a lot of work to collect all those acorns!!)


So, overall I’ve been quite busy. I also shared my first sermon at church about a month ago. I’ve nearly finished a post about that, and I’ll share it soon.

Oh, and the most exciting of all? I’m a High School graduate! I passed all the tests to get my GED (easiest way I know of for a homeschooler to graduate). I love it! 🙂

Until next time,
Samantha

Of Lessons Through Illness

Written October 13, 2012

I sit here tonight, in my cool messy room. My head is a bit painful, I’m congested, and my throat is less than comfortable. WHY???

Well, because you need it.

WHAT???

You need it.

SERIOUSLY???

Yes, my child. You need it. Remember you’re struggling with keeping your voice gentle? Well, I’m offering you some help. 🙂

So I sit. Yes, Lord, I think I understand.

Seems to be going around blogs, these days. I’m sick. Why? And God replies: “I have the best in mind.”

Quite recently I prayed that God would help me with my terrible habit of endless yelling. Raising my voice at the cute 3-year-old because he made a mistake. Or the growing 8-year-old who just never seems to get it.
I posted a while ago about getting quite ill after YD camp and thinking that I had whooping cough. You know how that finally got cured? I quit yelling. That simple. Shortly after, old habits returned…And guess where I am today! My throat hurts!! (I really was sick, and I managed to get over that…but my throat needed rest in order to fully heal…)

You see, I have a dreadful temper. If angered deeply enough I’ve been known to physically be a bit awful. Seems I yell my life away nearly everyday (if not every day). I hate to admit being controlled…but my temper controls me.
(Did you notice in the dialog above the all-caps in my responses? I didn’t think about writing it that way–that’s just what comes naturally to me. I’m frustrated. WHY AM I ALWAYS SICK??? [Isn’t CAPS the online way to yell?] For the record: I’m really not always sick.)

So I ask God for victory…He, in His infinite mercy, grants me some help when I can’t seem to do it on my own.

Last night, I lay on the couch. I was frustrated. I came home from babysitting for the day and suddenly noticed that the tiredness that had been in my eyes all afternoon was fever. I was having difficulties with changing the offices and positions I hold at church. (Last two years I was: chorister, Kindie Sabbath School assistant and greeter. It didn’t work out when different agreements came together and I was the Greeter, Song Leader, and Sabbath School Teacher all in one week! So, this year I’m only accepting Kindie Sabbath School assistant. But, the work is great and the laborers are few.) My room was a mess–and there was NO way I wanted it to stay that way! But I was tired. I told Mom all I wanted to do was sleep…And she said that was probably a good idea. But, no! I didn’t really want to sleep.

My sweet sister then came over and felt my forehead. “Oh, you’re quite hot!” And off she ran. Before long she was back with a cool washcloth and placed it on my head. I said something about freezing to death (quite the exaggeration, and I wasn’t even talking about current situations), but off she ran again. Quickly she returned with her warm feather comforter and snuggled me up cozily, there on the couch. Then she got another bright idea. “May I go in your room, Samantha?” “Uh, I guess” (She didn’t seem in the mood to get into mischief 😉 ) Off she ran again and soon returned with Mr. White. (My teddy bear…that I seem to not sleep well without.) She lifted the blanket and put it in my arms. Touching the washcloth she exclaimed, “this is already quite warm!” and again, off she ran to cool my washcloth. The timer went off and she ran to get dinner out of the oven. Dinner time! I considered getting up out of my cozy bed to get something to eat. Not for long…My dear sister was soon by my side with a plateful of food.

How could I be angry???

It makes me think: God in His great mercy came down to this earth, suffered for me, paid the price for my sins, served His whole life long, went back to Heaven and sent us the Comforter, and is currently preparing a place for me.

How could I be angry???

He did the same for you.

How could you be angry? Or depressed? Or troubled?

Jesus longs to give rest to the weary soul. I think it’s about time we ask, don’t you?

“Dear Father, thank you so much for coming down to this dreary place to save us. I pray that you would draw very near to all who would read this, that you would grant them the peace you have promised (John 14:27). I thank you for hearing and answering this prayer. In Jesus’ precious name. Amen.”

This is the confidence that we have in him, that, if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us!

Until next time,

Samantha

Happy Birthday to me…

So just a couple weekends ago I had another birthday. It was on Sabbath and therefore was extra special to me, besides the fact that to me, this is a milestone year.

But, even all that could not slightly compare to the beautiful morning that I spent with God.

The day before I had resolved to make the last day of my current year the best it could be. I wanted to look back and remember it as a positive day. Then I’d have a great start to the next year, as well!

There is just something so special about spending time close to God. Close to His throne. In His presence.

That Sabbath/birthday morning I could feel God’s presence, and hear His voice so clearly. It was as though my bedroom floor was holy ground. It had been a long time since I was really up early enough to be able to spend time with my Savior in perfect silence–to truly “be still”.

And all I have to say to you is this: “Be still and know that He is God!”  It’s an awesome experience.

During that time, I decided that I was finally going to write a sermon like my Pastor has suggested (or rather requested). (I told God that I so enjoyed the peace in my heart that nothing could stop me from sharing Him with others…careful what you tell God!) I’m eager to share, yes, (how could you not be??) but I am also quite nervous! I’d appreciate your prayers, I don’t like talking!

But, you know what I learned that beautiful morning? When my Lord is by my side, I have absolutely nothing to fear!

 

Pressing Heavenward,

Samantha

Mission Experience 2013

Wow! I haven’t written a post in nearly a month! Oh, all my dreams of keeping my blog regularly updated are harder to fulfil than I thought they’d be! I can assure you, though, that the lack of posts absolutely does not reflect a lack of excitement! The most exciting of which has to do with Young Disciple’s Mission Experience (ME).

It was Monday, a couple weeks ago, when the phone rang. I was the only one in the house at the moment, and therefore ran to answer it. I wasn’t sure my voice would work too well, but decided that I may as well try. You see, many of the YD campers got sick this year, and I was among those sick ones. Well, when I answered the phone it was one of the last people I’d expected to hear from…Namely, Ted Evert.

It was a slightly odd and awkward phone call. My voice didn’t even work enough to say my usual phone greeting, and I only barely managed to say a few words during the rest of the “conversation”. He told me it was alright-he understood, and many campers weren’t feeling well-and then verified who he was speaking to. When I first heard his voice I imediately thought “Mission Experience”, but I was quite nervous thinking it probably was to tell me that the few remaining spaces had already been filled. I actually was thinking that I’d be relieved if that’s what they had decided, but also quite disappointed.  Mr. Ted did finally tell me the purpose of his call, after I’d tried clearing my throat to speak, and seriously failed…The way I explain my response is this, “I answered the phone and my voice wouldn’t work, he told me his purpose for calling and my brain wouldn’t work!” 🙂 I am accepted! And very excited! All I managed to say was “awesome”…And after he told me the usual “if you need anything, or have any questions, we’ll be here” the one-sided phone call ended and I went to my room, fell on my knees, and asked God how it could possibly be true. Questions flooded my mind.

Is it really possible that I, Samantha, am going on a mission trip??

Aren’t there other youth out there who are better prepared??

Did I really realize what I was getting into when I said “I will go” ??

And beyond all that, how am I going to raise over $2000 towards ME expenses??????

 

I am now working on the fundraising part of this trip. Praying and asking God to provide.

Here’s the basic explanation of what Mission Experience 2013 is…A youth-led evangelistic series in the Philippines, reaching dear people for Christ.

 

We’ll be leaving the US on March 25 and returning on April 25, 2013. I would really appreciate your prayers, now as I’m (and many other youth are) fundraising, but most importantly while we are overseas. I’ve never been overseas before, and it sounds a bit scary.

 

I am going to need the help of all who are able. In order to reach my goal I will  need to raise a minimun (I’d love to raise more!) of $2, 200 towards the expenses of the trip. Half of that must have been reached by October 15. I have plans to do some Literature Evangelism here in my local town, soon, and by God’s grace that will be helpful in reaching my goal. It’s exciting to me: doing outreach twice! Selling books with precious gospel truths in them, to raise money to go and share the same truth with others!

 

If you would like to help financially, I would also really appreciate that. You can send your check directly to Young Disciple Ministries, (made out to: Young Disciple Ministries), PO Box 400, Inchelium, WA 99138. And please write my name, Samantha Edeliant, in the memo field so that they can keep track of how close I’m getting to my goal.

 

Let’s all do our part to hasten Christ’s second coming!

 

‘Till next time,

Samantha