And what does the LORD require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Prayer.

“Prayer is, after all, a very dangerous business.  For all the benefits it offers of growing closer to God, it carries with it one great element of risk: the possibility of change.
In prayer we open ourselves to the chance that God will do something with us that we had not intended… This possibility excites us, but at the same time there is a fluttering in the stomach that goes with any dangerous adventure.”  Emilie Griffin
Sometimes the hardest thing and the right thing are the same.
[_] love O
Peace and love.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Happy American Thanksgiving!

My thanksgiving is a bit odd this year. Its a pretty normal day. Lecture, work duties, intercession, outreach prep, small groups...its a normal Thursday. No turkey or stuffing. No football. No Macy's Day Parade. But in spite of it all I am so thankful. SO thankful. I don't really miss the American holidays. No Halloween was actually quite wonderful! I'm actually, dare I say, quite content without Thanksgiving (well...minus the whole not being with family. That definitely sucks.) But in honor of thanksgiving I thought I would share with you all some of the things I am thankful for here in Oxford (and consequently things I will miss in the coming months...) because it is always good to be thankful :) "Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." 1 Thes. 5:18
1. Construction signs with giant exclamation points on them. Seriously they crack me up every time. I tried to find a picture online but was unsuccessful. So just imagine. Huge orange diamond sign with a GIANT bubble exclamation point. haha
2. Other people driving. The whole driving on the left side of the road thing still messes me up. I still don't look the right way when crossing the streets. I still attempt to get into the driver's seat thinking its the passenger seat. I'm so grateful other people are driving...I'm pretty sure if I was driving we would have been in at least one accident thus far.
3. Will Reagan. One of many worship artists I've been introduced to here. By far, my favorite. Here's a little taste

4. The Prayer Room. I love having a place of worship. No shoes. No agendas. Just prayer. It is beautifully holy.
5. Lara. Not only is she an amazing cook who has been incredibly accommodating when it comes to people like me with weird eating habits but she has the best sense of humor, she loves Jesus more than anyone I know, she has been a great person to hang out with every morning for work duties, she speaks truth into my life, she always points me back to Jesus, she has a heart for missions, and she is an amazing friend. AND She's British (which means she gets 10 extra points for having a sweet accent). But really. I have been truly blessed to know her.
6. Sweet as. Its a common phrase here. Like when something is good instead of saying "awesome" or "cool" or whatever you say, you say "sweet as." At first I thought everyone was swearing...and then I found it slightly annoying...and now I say it. haha You can also say any descriptive word (cool, gnarly, dopey, etc.) with as after it. A trustee here on the base said dopey as yesterday. I nearly peed myself. She's so precious.
7. Getting mail. I absolutely love getting letters and cards. I don't know why. There's just something about the tangible expression of encouragement that makes me smile every time I get a letter.
8. Mountains. Oceans. Rivers. Gorges. Hills. New Zealand landscape. I see God's handiwork everywhere. New Zealand is honestly one of the most beautiful places on the planet. No joke.
9. The All Blacks-Never have I seen a country so dedicated to one sports team. I love it!
10. Google Voice. (Liz :) Enough said.)
11. A limited wardrobe. Many people here despise the fact that they have so few clothes. I find it incredibly freeing!! It gives me the opportunity to be creative with my clothing and an excuse to wear my favorite clothes a lot :) Plus it just makes you aware of how excessive we are with clothing. Honestly, no one needs more than a suitcase full of clothes.
12. Awesome friends. I have met so many wonderful people here and have been so blessed by each one of their friendships. I'm just not going to think about the fact that we only have a month left together here on base.
13. Trampoline. I love the trampoline. This may not make sense to many of you. But my absolute favorite way to worship is to jump on the trampoline and sing/listen to worship music. I just have a blast with God!
14. Teddy grahams with your coffee at Cafe 51. Seriously America...we definitely do better with the whole flavor in coffee thing...but where are the teddy grahams or fudge or marshmallows with my latte?
15. Skype! Technology makes being away from home so much easier. I love getting on to see my little cousin sing "Zaccheus was a wee little man...". Or my parents smiling. Or my best friends joking around. Its awesome :) (PS-my skype name is kkulchar...)
16. Anytime toast. There is always bread available for toasting. Butter. Cinnamon sugar. I've been reacquainted with a childhood love. How sweet it is!
17. My supporters. I am truly blessed by each person who prays, gives financially, sends encouragement, etc. It is such a privilege to have each one of you behind me! I amazed each and every day by the people who God has brought into my life. Ah. I just love you guys!!!
18. I have ALLLLLL my funds!!!!! In case you didn't read the last post...haha
19. Most importantly God. I'm not being cliche when I say that. I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know him better in this season. The more I know Him, the more I realize I don't know. But the closer I get to Him, the more I realize He is all that I need. Words are not adequate to describe my thankfulness for Him and for the gift of sacrifice he has given for me and for the whole world through Jesus. Ah. He's awesome.
Peace, love, thankfulness, and turkey!!! :)

Monday, November 21, 2011

Face of Excitement.

This is my face of excitement.
Why, you may ask, do I have this face of excitement today?
God has provided ALL my outreach funds!!!!!!
This past week I was blessed by several large gifts. This morning during prayer the leaders asked all of us who still didn't have all our funds in if they could put our names on a white board with the amount we owed next to it (we agreed). I didn't have a chance to tell them about the money that had come in this past week but I thought I still owed quite a bit more so I figured I would just tell them to change the amount once they showed us. Well they turned the board around...and I have almost the exact amount I need!!!!! I was sooo excited :)  I am so blessed by all of you that have given, prayed, given more, and prayed even more. You truly have been a part of this mission and I am so thankful for all that you have done. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!
Peace, love, and be blessed! :)

Friday, November 18, 2011

Taste of my processing.

This past week has been crazy. Lots and LOTS of time thinking, praying, processing, praying, talking, praying, jumping on the trampoline thinking, and more praying. I have been so blessed by mail this week its beyond words. I know it wasn't necessarily intentional, but I needed encouragement this week and your cards/packages did just that. Mom, Dad, Liz, and Jordan. You guys are amazing. I am sooooooo blessed. Check out some of the goodies they sent me! (And yes...that is a balloon. And yes it does have a smiley face on it :) And yes the chocolate is all gone. haha)
 So here are some of my thoughts...straight from my school journal. 

God has been teaching me a lot this past week about His provision and how He sustains me. Over Faith Weekend I really experienced having nothing and having God be my everything. It was incredibly humbling, challenging, difficult--but in some upside down God way really good. (It took me a couple days and lots of prayer to be able to say that...). What I'm learning is God doesn't promise us physical provision (clothes, food, shelter, etc.). He simply tells us not to worry about those things. He actually promises us that we will experience the opposite--the poor will always be among us, we will experience persecution, hardship, struggle. But God is so much bigger than that. He sustains us in spite of our needs. His knowledge of provision is so far beyond my understanding of what provision is.
So what does provision look like?
It is Jesus Christ. He is the bread of life. His sacrifice on the cross makes it possible for every single one of us to live for eternity with our heavenly Dad, to live forever without any needs, to live infinitely in complete fulfillment.  And in this earthly life, the bread of life still sustains because He is always with us. God promises he will never leave me. God promises he will never forsake me. God promises he will never forget me. I don't believe God is in all circumstances (specifically in suffering), but he is ALWAYS with me, even in the midst of those circumstances. When it seems I have nothing, by earthly standards, what I have found is that God can best provide for me in those moments. Because it is in those moments that He is truly my everything.

My prayer is that I can live with God as my everything even in the moments when I have earthly things too. My prayer is that prayer becomes your prayer too.

Peace and love from spring in New Zealand!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Loss for words.

This past weekend was faith weekend. We were journeying around New Zealand trusting that God would provide. It was definitely difficult. It was definitely a learning experience. It is definitely difficult to describe. So this post is going to be short. But just pray for me as I process this weekend (and the past 6 weeks of lecture too haha). Hard to believe in 6 weeks I'll be heading to the Middle East!
Peace and lots of love :)

Monday, November 7, 2011

Scars on our hands.

I love reflecting on all God has done for me in the past few years. Especially when drinking coffee. He has taught me so much. One thing God has taught me in the past few years is the importance of vulnerability. Today in one of our prayer sessions they asked all the students and staff from our school who didn't have all the finances for their outreach to step in the middle. Talk about vulnerability... So I got up and walked to the middle. Despite the fact that I almost passed out from the heat (50 people gathered in a small space all laying hands on each other doesn't exactly cool you down haha), it was so encouraging to have people praying for me. Because the reality of the situation is I am still at least $2000 short of paying for the rest of my outreach phase and the actual figure is probably much closer to $3000. 
I heard a sermon by John Piper about missions and he used a really good analogy, so I'm going to share it with you. He said God calls us all to be to share the gospel with the rest of the world. Matthew 28 Go into ALL the world and make disciples of all nations. But it looks different for different people. We're digging a well in search of living water.  There are those who hold on to the rope and those who are lowered down into the well. Either way, you get scars on your hands. If you are reading this here's my challenge. Be one of those people holding the rope. Give $100, $200, $1000, or more. Help lower me down into the well. Because God hasn't created all of you to be down in the well, but that's how he has designed me. But there is no way I can go down into the well without your help. And when we show up in heaven, we both need scars on our hands.
Reminder: If you want to give, send a check (made out to "New Wine Anglican Mission" with "Katie-YWAM" in the memo line) to Katie Kulchar 420 Dale St Flushing, MI 48433. If you make out the checks to me personally that is totally fine...but your gifts won't be tax deductible. 
Peace and Love

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Core.

I hesitate to do public acknowledgment of people because inevitably you leave someone out and they are hurt and offended. So to preface this posting, I want to say that I am thankful for every, single, one of my supporters, friends, and family and my intention is not to diminish what other people are doing for me, it is simply to say thank you to these wonderful people in my life.
See I have this group I call my core. They are my prayer warriors back home. They are some of my dearest friends. They are the ones I can go to no matter what. And I am so blessed and thankful for each one of them.
So dearest core,
I love you all dearly and am so thankful for your prayers and encouragement. I am truly blessed to know each one of you! An email thanking you just doesn't suffice!
Ps- KT you better do 5 sit-ups. Core. Do another 5. ;)

My Prayer Warrior (LIMPY!)- Jen :) (PS-Don't think about penguins.)
 The Southern Belle and Wonderful RA-Rebecca :) (PS-Why do we have no pictures together???)
 My Long Distance, Long Lasting Friend- Jill :) (PS-Yes, this picture is from high school haha)
The Farmer's Daughter (And My Lovely Roomie)-Anna :) (PS- I wish I had the picture of you on the floor with all the food that you and Sarah threw on the ground in the corner of our kitchen...haha.)
Beautiful, Bible-studyer- Brittany :) (PS-I swore we had a picture together...but you look beautiful without me!)
Mi Amiga de Autobus y Eternal Secret Hermana- KT :) (PS-We were so ridiculous. Who am I kidding? We ARE so ridiculous. I love it.)
Friend through Thick and Thin- Cara (We were so hardcore. I can't even begin to list of all the wonderful memories we have together!)
My Best Friend-Liz :) (I read this quote today and I thought of you.
"We all let people into our lives, but you will find that really good friends let you into your own." Thank you for doing that for me.)
 
May God bless you with amazing friends like he has blessed me.
Peace and Love :)