Le bien et le mal
God moved today. Not even 1 hour into my flight, I witnessed the woman behind me give her life to Christ. To those who have been praying for me: God has already answered and done even more than I could imagine. I’m not sure where to start…
On Monday night, the associate pastor at my church gave his testimony during my college church group. One of the things he talked about was how he would talk to people on airplanes and on beaches and in frat houses about Jesus, and that many people came to be saved through those encounters. For a very long time now, I have been praying I would be able to build the courage to do that. That God would give me the words. That he would use me… and not make it weird or awkward. How the heck do I do that?! I can’t lead people to Christ. I have no idea. I don’t want to turn people away from the good news. I asked my pastor how he did it. “Just love people,” he said. But, like, how? I need to see it in action!
God answered my prayers on this plane-- I sat next to a woman when our plane took off. We start chatting. Long story short, the guy in front of her was rude so she moved to the row behind me (side note, the plane was super empty so I had the whole row to myself mwahaha). A few minutes later, I heard another woman behind me randomly ask her if she liked music and played any instruments. The first woman was shocked. “Yeah I love music. I play guitar, sing, and write music; how did you know that?” The other woman explained she knew that because of “words of knowledge” from the Holy Spirit. She asked God to show her something about the first woman. Their conversation went on as they talked about spiritual things. It was the most amazing thing to overhear. It got pretty crazy; I don’t want to share too much because a lot of it is personal for the woman, but let’s just say she now truly knows how deeply Jesus knows her and loves her. They prayed together and she received Jesus into her life. I couldn’t bear it any longer, so I turned around and joined their conversation.
We spent 3 and a half hours talking about how good God is and the new believer shared a lot of her life story with us. You could tell God has been working in her forever. We talked about what the Bible says about her and what it says about Him. You could tell she was being blown away by almost everything we said. It was quite emotional and 100% awesome. When she received the Holy Spirit, she said she felt so much more alive, like there was a fire inside her chest. She also spoke a little bit in tongues! Seriously, God is sooooo good!!! I also spoke in tongues for the first time in my life. I felt so much peace and joy in my body. It was almost like I was floating. She said at one point: “we are not in this plane right now. We are in Heaven. This is Heaven.” She was so right.
"For where two or three gather in my name, there am I with them.” -Matthew 18:20
Unfortunately, the trip goes downhill from there. My anxiety levels were at an all-time high and stayed high for two days straight. I had a panic attack in the Paris CDG airport bathroom and couldn't get myself to calm down. All I wanted was to get on a plane right back to California. When I prayed for God to help me, He gave me a beautiful and personal gift, so I knew it was His doing: "La Vie en rose" started playing over the speakers in the bathroom. This is a song that my mom and I share and it's a song that represents my love for France. I almost immediately stopped crying and I went to board my next plane to Marseille.
Throughout the entire flight, I had to concentrate to keep my breathing steady. The panic attacks were far from over. I'll spare you most of the gross details, but I did get sick in the cab from the airport to my homestay. I met my host mom (Liliane) in the most lowly state and continued to be sick throughout the evening into the night. I felt super impolite, but Liliane was very kind and understanding with me. Liliane is an older woman who lives in the suburbs of Aix. She doesn't speak very much English, but she is very friendly and wants to help me learn French. I am actually quite satisfied with myself because I can understand almost everything she says to me in French (Madame Dugo would be proud)!
Anxiety, jet lag, plus being ill has taken its toll on my body. I have felt very off every day since I've been here. It has been hard so far and I'm not at the point where I would say I am enjoying my time very much. I hope and pray I will start feeling better emotionally and physically.
But it hasn't been all bad. The city is beautiful; it almost feels unreal, like Disneyland. The other American students are fun and nice. I can tell we will become close quickly. My program directors are absolutely amazing as well. They have done a fantastic job giving us all kinds of important information and helping us feel situated here. We've done historic tours of the city as well as café meet ups and scavenger hunts to get to know the city on our own. Tomorrow we are taking a day trip to Cassis on the Mediterranean. Hopefully there will be lots of cool pictures coming!!!
Prayer requests: good health and peace (lots of both plz)
- No Comments