Preparing for Kona

Moments Away…Ready For Something New

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The time has come. Seven hours until the new year, 38 hours until I step on the plane to Kona, Hawaii.  And while I still have a lot to do, I’m so ready. Ready for the emotional and physical roller coaster of 2013 to be finally over; ready for the island breeze of 2014 to rush over my body.

My take-away from this year? Simple: God’s plan is NOT my plan, of which I am so thankful for.  2013 has been about my expectations being ground to dust, to make room for things so much better. There is no way I could have anticipated the mountains I would climb this year, and as hard as it was, I’m glad I climbed them.  I have found my victory is Jesus.

This new years, I’m focusing on what is coming, instead of what has past. I’m focusing on the blessings instead of the valleys. I could talk forever about the lessons I’ve learned this year, but I have neither the time or energy.  For now I’m simply looking forward: to the new friends I will meet, the new lessons I will learn, the new places I will see, and most importantly, the new ways I will grow closer to God. Because I’ve learned when everything is stripped away, he alone matters.

These past few weeks I have been meditating on the words from the Valley Song by Jars of Clay:

While we wait, for a rescue, with our eyes tightly shut,

face to the ground, using our hands, to cover the fatal cut.
And though the pain is an ocean, tossing us, around, around, around,
You have calmed greater waters, and higher mountains have come down.

I will sing of Your Mercy, that leads me through valleys of sorrow, to rivers of joy…

 

Thank you dear friends for reading and keeping up with me! I am so excited to share with you about new adventure! Stay tuned for updates while I am in Kona! New Years blessings on you!

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New Zealand Bound!

 

I have some exciting news to share! Instead of doing the first part of our outreach tour in Hong Kong, my school leader has decided that will be traveling in New Zealand with the founder of YWAM! We will be spending the month of April touring and serving in New Zealand, and then spend May and June in South Korea! Below is a portion of a letter from my fabulas school leader, Maria Jackson.

DEAR STUDENTS,
WE ARE SO EXCITED TO MEET YOU ALL SO VERY SOON.:)

TODAY, ONE THING WE MADE DECISION FOR OUR OUTREACH LOCATION.
THAT IS, WE WILL NOT GO TO HONG KONG BECAUSE DOOR IS NOT OPENING.
BUT OUR YWAM FOUNDER LOREN CUNNINGHAM WANTS US TO TOUR WITH HIM TO NEW ZEALAND ONE MONTH OF APRIL.
SO TODAY WE MADE DECISION WITH HIM.
NOW OUR OUTREACH TOUR NATIONS WILL BE NEW ZEALAND AND S.KOREA.
WE ARE SO VERY EXCITED FOR YOU AND IT IS UNUSUALLY SMALL SCHOOL.
AND WE WILL HAVE 21 STUDENTS AND 13 STAFF. SO ALL TOGETHER WE WILL BE 34 OF US!

This news is so exciting for me! I am so at peace about going on my DTS, even though my health has been in question.  I have faith that God will provide what I need for this trip; physically, emotionally, spiritually and financially.  Please for continue to pray for me, I am definitely experiencing some spiritual warfare.  The devil can try to keep me home, but its NOT GOING TO WORK!

Blessing friends, hope you Christmas is peaceful 🙂

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Be Still and Know That I am God

“Be still and know that I am God,

I will be exalted among the nations,

I will be exalted in the earth.”

Psalms 46:10

Be Still…translated from the Hebrew word râphâh, which literal means cease, fail, idle, let alone, slack and to be weak or slothful.

Think about those English words for a moment.  Do they sound like good things to do?  Not in the culture!  In our present age, it is all about being the fastest and most efficient.  We strive to be self-suffocate, independent people.  Its all about how much we can do do do, to be there best best BEST!  Busy…has somehow become the new happy.  But it isn’t very happy at all.

From reading Psalm 46, it sure doesn’t sound like God’s idea of happy either.  Apparently, God wants us to slow down…stop and think if him.   This is does not come natural to me, this has been my struggle for the past couple months. 

I am different than a lot of people; I’m an odd combo, an oxi-moron.  I am a major extrovert…with some major depression.  What does this mean? It means I get my high from people.  Being with my friends, feeling connected and in the middle of whatever is happening is better than any drug for me. I can be physically and even mentally exhausted to no end, but when I’m with a big group of my friends, I become an energized social butterfly!  For a lot of people this type of situation can be overwhelming and exhausting, but normally it isn’t for me.  With some friends by my side…I’m on top of the world. But when I’m all alone; doing homework, riding the bus, trying to fall asleep…there’s a different side of me.  Its a sad, lonely, confused Heather.  There are few that have seen this side of me, which isn’t even really on purpose.  Its just the people that know me well enough to be spending time in a one on one setting who see glimpses of the depressed side of me.  For years I have had everyone fooled, thinking a was happy as all get out, and I wasn’t even trying to fool them!  Because I DO have great moments and I HAVE been blessed by a lot of things.  But for some reason, whether its by nature or nurture,  I can have a great night with friends and still cry myself to sleep that night.

This is one of the reasons why it so hard for me to follow the Lord’s instructions and “be still.”  Being busy is probably my greatest coping mechanism.  It isn’t very healthy, but its better than some of my alternatives, and it looks great.  When I have to hold yourself together to be busy, nobody gets to know how sad I am…including myself.  When I’m busy, with often very good things, I get to hide from my emotions.

I have been living the functional yet dysfunctional lifestyle since September.  Now, the school term is over, I am not working or dancing.  I have twenty days to get ready to go on my trip, but not much else going on.  While it should feel like a relief, and it does a little, it is actually very scary.  I feel like I am going through withdrawals from school…because at school I have so many friends and so I love it.  I am dreading this holiday season, because it has such bittersweet memories, but mostly, because it is suppose to be a time of rest.  And for me, resting means I have to feel.

A lot has happened to me over the past few months.  There have been very hard things happen, but I had to keep going, because I was busy.  There were always places to go, people to see, no time to be sad and cry.  Now it is different, I can’t be numb anymore.  I know that is going to be good for me, but honestly, it really stinks.  I pulled things together really well, and now I have to un-pull-it-together so that I don’t completely fall apart while on my missions trip!  Honestly…I don’t even know where to start, except by writing this post.  And by remembering that verse, meditating on that day and night. Tonight, that is what I am trying to do.

 

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Swing Dance Fundraiser Recap

On October 25th, some friends and I hosted an awesome fundraising event for my DTS: A Swing Dance Party!  We had a great turn-out, people of all ages and stages of dancing.  We definitively raised awareness for my trip and had a LOT of fun,  plus raising over $300! God is good! It was also an honor to dedicate the night to the family of Dave Huttala, who had died exactly one year before.  He was the dad of a dancer friend of mine.  Please enjoy these pictures of the event: Photography by my friend Dane Vandwiele.

 

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Post Thanksgiving Update

Laughing...because sometimes the life of Heather is just unbelievable.

Laughing…because sometimes the life of Heather is just unbelievable.

Dear friends,

I am coming home from the Tri-Cities tomorrow and I NEED HELP! I have been very successful with Black Friday Shopping and have been able to get most of my Christmas/thank you gifts for people and a lot of new comfy/workout clothes for Kona. I got some new bed sheets and towels for my move also! I have been advice to get what I can here for cheap because everything is so expensive in Hawaii. So now I just need to sort everything out! I need to sort: what I am planning on bring to Kona, what clothes I am going try to sell, what items I can use for my next fundraiser or donate to my Grandma’s House, what items I need to put into storage, and what things go together to make nice Christmas gifts!

This is fun work, guys! And I have tons of yummy food to feed you and old things to give you if you so desire! But I do need help staying focused and lifting things. I also have finals week after next and need help studying! I actually enjoy my classes and homework, its just really helpful having someone with me keeping my on track and quizzing me.

I am sad to announce that I am having more health issues. I will not get into the nature of this yet because at this point there are a lot of unknowns…which is so frustrating! So my Go Fund Me site I would say is about half missions funding and half medical funding…crazy. I am excited to be ending my second day without any Dr./Urgent Care/ER visits…but I know it all will continue once I get home again. What I can say right now is that my right wrist is still giving me trouble (its is still obviously sprained/dislocated), I am very low iron and I seem to be having some heart trouble.

One more crazy hiccup in my life…my beautiful purse was stolen/lost on the bus on Tuesday! Yes, I have checked in with my bank. Yes, I have emailed Trimet. NOTHING! Finally I had all my IDs and cards in one place…then ALL GONE. Fortunately I still have my phone and keys.

So, here are the prayer/help as you can needs for right now:

  • That my purse will be returned
  • That I will have clarity concerning health decisions
  • That I will be able to focus and do well during finals
  • That I will be blessed with helpers to get things done; even the simple things are so hard sometimes
  • That my friends will be able to understand my needs and help me, especially financially
  • That I will be able to get on a good sleep rhythm
  • That I will be able to have good boundaries with certain people, no matter how much I love them
  • That I will have the energy and focus to get the important things done
  • That I will be thankful for many people and things I have been blessed with
  • That I will rely on GOD NO MATTER WHAT

I have several new blog posts in the works, including a Thanksgiving thankful post, and a recap of the Swing Dance Fundraiser…WITH PICTURES!  But this is what I have got for now. As much as I hate admitting it, I need help.

Keep updated with my Fundraising Site and Facebook Page, and of course for all my silly and/or deep thoughts on Twitter.

Blessings on you all!

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I’m on Facebook!

I’m on Facebook!

Why a page for me, “The Corpse Butterfly?” Well I’m not quite sure yet. But I guess I’m excited to share who I am.  My words, my music, my dancing. Its kind of scary. It was scary going downtown dressed as the Corpse Bride on Halloween night. It was scary when I picked up my purple butterfly wings for the first time at church. It was scary the first time I tried to take the zombie makeup off and the pretty makeup on in less than an hour. It is scary every time I share myself with someone else.  It might always be a little bit scary when I give in to the metamorphosis that is me in Jesus. Yeah…its scary. But it is SO GOOD. 

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With You in Spirit Tonight

Here’s another letter from a relative I received today. God is with us!!!

 

 

 

I remember swing parties and will be with you in spirit tonight, even though we are separated by some 66 years and an entire continent. I’m also excited for you as you prepare for your Great Adventure and will be mailing a contribution soon. 
 
I will also read your blog and email you from time to time. (I’m not a big Facebook fan.) When I turned 18, I had just finished my first year at Lindenwood College, a small Presbyterian school in St. Charles, MO, just outside St. Louis. I was on my own for the first time and loved every minute of it.
♥♥♥
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Swing Dance Fundraiser…Less Than a Week!

The countdown is on!!! The Swing Dance is Friday night!!!

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Now that I have lots of information about my trip and what I will be doing, I am even more ecstatic to share about it in this great night of dancing!  I am being blessed so much already by the people who are helping me put this event together and who have RSVPed!

For more information about the event please visit my earlier posts Fundraiser Swing Dance: To Kona and Beyond and Swing Dance Fundraiser Reminder and Update.

You can RSVP on the Facebook Event or on Google Calender

Thank you and I hope to see you there! Please feel free to introduce yourself!

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Welcome to the HeartBridge Performing Arts & Media DTS!

Aloha and Welcome to HeartBridge, Performing Arts & Media DTS!

We are so very happy to accept you as one of our 2014, JANUARY quarter DTS students! You are an answer to our prayers, by join our calling to Know God and Make Him Known through the Arts and Media.

Friday, January 3 /  There will be orientation and a welcoming Celebration. ( We are encouraging every students to bring one small gift from your nation to present to the Lord as gift in this day. 

Monday, January 6 / Our first full week of lectures begins.

Right from week 1 (Jan.6) – week 12 ( March28) the daily schedule will include Lecture content, plus Skills Training, which involves learning/rehearsing 1-hour long production called “Coming Home. If you want a glimpse, check our website:   www.goheartbridge.com  or www.uofnkona.edu  – Performing Art (we will give you the weekly schedule on Arrival Day.)

Then,  March 30 – June 30 will be tour ( Outreach ) to the Hong Kong ? and South Korea for 3 months. ( Cost is $6,000 )- Please open to change. We are still praying.

( We might have HeartBridge Company extended tour in Korea for one or two more months. )

During week one, it is our custom to hold auditions for every student to try anything you want. That will help our very experienced staff to identify your best gift for JESUS.

Many students have been asking what date they should book their return home. I recommend scheduling your return ticket home some time around July. 1-3.

And we might recruit few people for “Heartbridge Company” extended one or two more months tour in same nation we are ending if we see your skill level is intermediate to pro and character is mature.  Also we will have time to recruit for next our staff.  Then if you want to move into next YWAM, Kona Staff or other courses then YOU need to Change the date for your return ticket later.

For your information, we also have an incredible continual secondary school Biblical Foundation for the Art ( Sep. ) & School of Performing Art 1 ( Jan.) scheduled to start as module course towards AA or BA degree for the U of N, that may serve as the perfect warm up for you to join our two-year Performing Arts degree track called “Center Stage,” which runs from early as September , 2013. Please check the course info :www.uofnkona.edu and you can register through online after completed your DTS.

We welcome any student who has successfully completed the PADTS to audition for our full-time performing arts company called HeartBridge if your Art skill is  intermediate or professional level with mature character .

Well, we are so excited to see you soon and pray for you that God will protect you and provide everything you need.  May all your friends and families will blessed by your obedience to God!

Friends, I am humbled and overwhelmed.  These last couple days God is making his plan so clear.  His timing is not our timing, his ways are not our ways.  But he does have our joys and dreams in mind.

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Official Acceptance to the Performing Arts Discipleship Training School at YWAM Kona!

University of the Nations
Youth With A Mission
Kona, Hawaii

Dear Heather,

Aloha, Bienvenido, 환영합니다, 欢迎, Bem-vindo, Welkom, добро пожаловать, Willkomen, and Welcome to the University of the Nations Kona, Hawaii!

We’re very excited to let you know that you have been accepted into theDTS – Performing Arts! So . . . welcome to our family here in Kona, Hawaii!  We’re looking forward to seeing you on Arrival Day – January 02, 2014.

The foundation of our calling as a mission and university is “to know God and make Him known”. In our training we want to see you encounter God in a fresh, new way and begin to discover your role in bringing the Gospel to a world waiting to hear the good news.

As you come here to YWAM Kona you will join a movement of hundreds of students from all over the world. Many have come to attend a Discipleship Training School as their first step of discovering God’s will for them in missions. You will also find students here who are pursuing Undergraduate or Graduate Degrees with the University. We’re excited to have you with us as we seek to see lives, families and communities transformed.

You’ll find our “Preparing to Come” document attached, which has lots of helpful information and will hopefully answer most of your questions. One of your school leaders will also contact you with information that’s specific to your course.

In island culture it is customary to bring a gift to honor your hosts. As you come, would you bring a small gift that is unique to your home or nation? All student gifts will be presented by your school leaders at the Hawaiian welcoming protocol.

In the culture of the islands all guests are treated as Ohana – Hawaiian for family. We’re looking forward to what God has in store for all of us during your time here. So . . . as a new member of our Ohana, “Aloha and e komo mai!” (Hello and welcome).

UofN Promo 360 2013 from Global Virtual Studio on Vimeo.

I am so excited to be officially starting this journey. Especially these past few days I have realized how pivotal I believe this adventure will be in my life testimony.  I have been broken in deep ways this week, and I am so excited to be in a God loving environment where he can put me back together in deep ways.  Praising him for thrilling news!

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