A Heart for Kurdistan – A Continuing Journey

My anything story started 10 years ago, January 2005 in Nashville, TN, at the Passion Conference when I stood up and my friend Wendy prayed over me as I “accepted a call to the nations.” At the time, I thought it was “just” for the trip to Kenya in the summer of 2005; boy was I wrong!! Looking back I realize how powerful praying scripture really is; when a naive 20-something who has never lived outside of Iowa prays Isaiah 6:8 from the heart – “Here I am Lord, send me” it actually happens! Fast-forward to 2007, Passion ’07 in Atlanta, is when Kurdistan first came on my radar. I didn’t think too much of it that year, other than in prayer. A year later in 2008 in Dallas, TX, volunteering this time, at yet a Passion gathering, I respond again to the call of God from Scripture, this time from Isaiah 26:8, “YES Lord” – two extremely powerful and life changing words. Little did I know that a God-chance meeting in those two days would change the trajectory of my life forever! This Iowa girl finally got to live outside of her home state in 2009, “ironically” I stuck with somewhere that started with “I,” it just happened to be on the other side of the world – Iraq. The process of going was not easy, but I truly and sincerely prayed “anything God,” and I truly meant it. Uprooting my “comfortable” life to move to the other side of the world was a death and grieving process to so many things – homeownership, car ownership, friends, family, comforts, the familiar. Yet Philippians 3:7-14 became so real to me through the process – the loss was turned into gain! Though I only spent 8 months living among the people in the Kurdish region of Northern Iraq, I fell in love with the nation, the people, and the Middle East. When I left, God gave me a word that I would return one day, that what He had called me to do there was not yet done. I am still waiting 5+ years later; I do not know the what, who, when, or how – but I am believing God that what He has spoken will come to pass. In the five years since returning back to the states I have grown even more in love with the nations, with Jesus, and have become a Texan! In 2011, I moved to Waco, TX, to do a yearlong discipleship training school through a local church. Silly me, I thought I would just be in Texas for a year, instead God had other plans – to graft me into a tribe of fellow comrades while shifting me into a new season of life. In obedience to the voice of God, I stayed living in Waco after completing the discipleship school despite not having clear direction or any employment. In that “desert” year, again in obedience saying the “anything” God prayer, He pointed me in a new direction. I am currently in the process of completing my graduate degree in Clinical Mental Health. My passion has always been first and foremost Jesus – and now I am honing in on my part of the body. I want to see kingdom change in the hearts, souls, minds, and lives of people by seeing emotional and spiritual healing through the power and love of Jesus! My heart is still for the nations, specifically for the refugees and displaced people in the Middle East. I am holding on to the promise God spoke when I left Kurdistan in 2009 that my time there was not yet done; yet not my will but yours be done Lord. My current anything prayer is one of surrender yet again. “God – do what you will! I am willing to (surrender) and do anything.” I could have never imagined these last 10 years and I know that the best is yet to come! #AnythingProject