Archive for March, 2012

اللغة العربية أو الإنجليزية

Posted in Uncategorized on March 28, 2012 by Luke Summey

I truly thought I would be online again way before this. Oh well. So update number two comes halfway through the trip. Oops.  =)

In LA we had an incredible day. The Church on the Pearl was very gracious to us and picked us up at the airport at 5 am, let us crash in the fellowship hall, go about our day, and then took us back to the airport later that night. They were wonderful. We walked about 12 miles that day. The group hated me afterwards. =)  Three summers ago I was with a group in LA for the summer and my part of the team spent time in Venice Beach, so that is where I took the Jordan team. We spent time prayer walking the whole area before we did anything. The group immediately felt their hearts break for the amount of need for Truth, Hope and Love in that area. Afterwards we broke into groups of two and walked around initiating spiritual conversations with people there. It was really good for everyone. We feel strongly that God had purposed us to be there that day.

The next day we arrived at New York and met up with Arjay. We were picked up by some new friends and dropped off in a part of the Brooklyn area to help a new church plant. One of the churches main means of helping out the community is by taking care of one of the few parts of New York that isn’t concrete: a local park. The park is poorly understaffed and so we helped by cleaning it up. The community took a lot of notice and thanked the church. A few even took cards hoping to attend! After that we ate New York pizza in New York (WhAt?!) and then prayer walked the Arab community nearby. It was awesome!

Then came the 12 hour flight from New York to Jordan. It was long…even if you slept for a lot of it.

Then we landed. I was home. We spent the first day with my family. It was good for us to relax some and get to hear about our purposed here. We loved it. The next day we all split up. Amber is hanging out with a Christian girl in the capital(Amman), Arjay is hanging out with my Dad and getting to see different ministries here and meet different pastors, and the rest of us are up North bouncing between the village of Husun and the city of Irbid. We’re hanging out with the Christian college group here, getting to see their life, go to classes with them at their universities, and meet their friends. So far everyone has loved the food! Yay! It’s good because we haven’t had anything American yet. The people here are so wonderful. I love them so much. I miss my home.

The plan was for all of us to be paired with stronger English speakers for the week. Most of them speak decent English. However, since they know I speak Arabic many have decided to default in Arabic and have me translate for them. Let me tell you this: it has been six years since I have regularly used strong Arabic, six years that I’ve lost a lot of it, and even at my height I was never super confident; at least solely in Arabic. I think in what Arabs call Arabeezy and what Americans call Arabish. It means a combination of the two languages but not one or the other. I’ve had to put all of my words and efforts into just Arabic. This week has proven to me several things: 1) cultural immersion is the best way to learn a language. It’s possible my Arabic is better today than ever before. 2) Translating is an art form. Explaining cultural details and accurately defining words and actions takes time and care. 3) I love Arabic and learning the language. The more I learn the more I love. 4) Translating and/or functioning nearly completely in Arabic (since I’m only with the team members for a few hours a day)  is super exhausting. It’s hard for me to talk to the team in English right now because my current first instinct is Arabic, but even when I realize what is going on…I’m just tired. I sleep 8 hour nights and take 2 hour naps during the day.

I guess today is the halfway point in the total trip. We have two and a half more days in Jordan and then we leave. I’ll try to update again the day after tomorrow.

Love you all!

(Also, Katie, I miss being able to talk to you every day. It hurts not being able to.)

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Already an Adventure, Now to the Airport

Posted in Uncategorized on March 23, 2012 by Luke Summey

This trip has already been an adventure and we haven’t even headed to the airport yet. T minus an hour before we leave for the airport. T minus five and a half before we take off. It’s crazy. I just finished packing and it still hasn’t quite kicked in yet. I know it’s coming though.

God has already made this trip incredible. Simply through the preparation for this God has spoken to so many of us in different ways. For each of us we have spent weeks preparing our hearts. God has provided in crazy ways. Between the Jordan and Japan trips, God provided $20,000 within two months! Crazy! This is the first time I’ve organized an international trip at all, much less with six other people coming with me. I’ve learned a lot about leadership through this. Training the team, learning to think of details, organizing, making phone calls, writing emails, finding contacts….and somehow taking the time to prepare my own heart for this. I’ve been pushed, and I’ve loved it.

Tonight we leave for Los Angeles. Our first day will be there.

Lord bring the rain!

Be Prepared (the motto of the boy scouts)

Posted in Uncategorized on March 20, 2012 by Luke Summey

“For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.”  –Isaiah 43:19

“Is the LORD’s hand shortened? Now you shall see whether my word will come true for you or not.”  –Numbers 11:23

“Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater works than these will he do, because I am going to the Father.” –John 14:13

” I still have many things to say to you, but you cannot bear them now. When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth, for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come. He will glorify me, for he will take what is mine and declare it to you. All that the Father has is mine; therefore I said that he will take what is mine and declare it to you.”  –John 16:12-15

Do you feel it? Have you sat down in the presence of the Holy Spirit and felt it coming? For I am about to do something new… Have you doubted the possibility? Is the LORD’s hand shortened?… Do you feel like you aren’t a part of it? ..whoever believes in me will also do the works that I do; and greater… Do you feel like the great mysteries of God are only for those randomly enlightened by God? …he will take what is mine and declare it to you.

The Holy Spirit has been given to us. Why has the Church ignored this and focused only on the other two members of the trinity? The Holy Spirit is what makes the Church different. Dreams, visions, prophecies, miracles, the expansion of the church, masses of people saved… these aren’t myths of the past. These are the realities the church is to be living out through the power of the Holy Spirit.

Something is coming. A movement of the Church. It’s gonna be big. Are you preparing your heart for it?

Cardio Overhaul

Posted in Uncategorized on March 15, 2012 by Luke Summey

My heart is just flesh. It’s squishy. Because it’s in the heart of my chest (yes God, pun intended) and surrounded by muscle, bone and flesh I tend to think of it as protected and invulnerable. Were I to battle I would place armor over it to further keep it from harm. When life does battle against me I try to put up armor to protect it. When others want it…no. It wouldn’t take much to break it if I pulled it out. Many people would try, like thieves looting for plunder. Some would do it on accident. Like children not recognizing how fragile something is. Some would do it without realizing or being able to stop because they themselves are hurt, like a victim of radioactivity giving someone else a hug.

I don’t know how it’s happened. There are these callouses on my heart. I’ve kept it so protected. How did anything even rub against it to put them there? I think it’s sick to. Are they clots? What it the food I ate? Did what I put into my body elsewhere end up finding its way into my heart and is harming it? I’ve done all I can to protect it. I’ve even only given special people access to it before. Some of them hurt it though. I got better at giving people access. Sorta. Why does it keep hurting?

My heart lets my body move. It pumps life into my whole body.  It gives them motion. It speeds up to increase my action and slows down to give me rest. When that lifeblood returns to my heart, sometimes I wonder if it’s been given all that it needs. I wonder what my heart is pumping into the rest of me; the quality it pumps into my actions. My heart really is me. It pumps the essence of who I am into me. Others hearts are the essence of who they are. I know myself by knowing my heart. Others know me by knowing my heart. I know others by knowing theirs. I guess I have to be vulnerable sometime.

I know you by Your heart. But your heart isn’t like mine. It doesn’t have callouses, it isn’t sick, it doesn’t change because of others, it isn’t vulnerable to attack, it isn’t hidden from others, it doesn’t pump anything bad. Your heart is pure. Your heart doesn’t change because of others but it changes others. You’re heart heals. You’re heart is full and strong. Your heart beats an unending life.

Ok…this is hard…and scary. My heart beat is irregular, quivering. Ok, here it is: I want to know Your heart. That’s all I want. I want to know Your heart. If I know Your heart then everything will change. So…here is mine. It’s naked, out of my chest…take it into Yours. Plummet this heart of mine into the depths of Yours. Then can you fix it? Can you scrub the callouses off? Can you pump out the sickness in mine and fill it with Your blood? With care take my heart and break it inside the warmth of Yours. Can my heart pump Your lifeblood? You’re is better. Mine doesn’t work. It doesn’t last. Fix it God? I know I’ll have to bring it back to you over and over so that you can fix it. I want Your lifeblood in me. I want it to pump through my veins. Everyday I’ll come to You and let You take my heart into Yours and fill it. I’ll give it to You.

I just want to know You, Lord. Teach me more about You. Let me die to myself. Empty me of myself. Fill me with who You are. My life is Yours.

Man Plans, The Lord Determines

Posted in Uncategorized on March 12, 2012 by Luke Summey

“In his heart a man plans his course but the Lord determines his steps.”  –Proverbs 16:9

Have you ever read a particular piece of scripture and seen a really obvious meaning in it and then one day after having read that same piece of scripture a million times before you suddenly see an even deeper truth? Something even more profound pops out at you? When Jesus says, “He who has ears, let him hear!” it initially means that if you can interpret the words of God then listen, but after really hearing you discover that it means more than that. It means that to the one who truly hears there is a deeper, hidden truth from God. Hearing doesn’t mean understanding a piece of scripture, it means seeing the deeper truth beyond the first layer of truth. When we think we fully understand a piece of scripture, that is when we have stopped hearing. Those who hear don’t tune out what they feel they already understand or have heard. Those who hear listen intently even when they have heard it a thousand times because they want to hear and know more.

This past week as I spoke at the Vine (BCM Oahu’s worship service) and I quoted Prov. 16:9 using the typical context that men make plans but really God is the one who knows what is going to happen to them despite their own plans. Someone even quoted to me later a different version of the verse that says, “Man makes plans and God laughs.” which furthers that concept. But I wonder if the later version of the verse missed out on a very important, deeper meaning in the more direct translation.

God has made each of us incredibly unique. He’s also given us free will. What if God lets us choose part of our life? Choose the direction we go in life? We get to choose whether we follow Him or not. Once we make that choice we still have to choose how much of ourselves we give to Him. We choose how deeply we die to ourselves and surrender to Him. What if God allows us to make certain choices? What if we plan our course but the Lord determines our steps? What if I chose to be a Religious studies major and God ended up using that decision to determine me to the Pagan Student Association at Appalachian State?  What if I chose to surrender to Christ and answer His call to become a Church Planter and He determined me to spend time in LA and Hawaii to learn from Church Planters before I start? What if I choose to pursue Katie and the Lord determined us to plant a church together in Cookeville? My willingness to serve God combined with the uniqueness that God instilled in me leads me to plan my course but it is the Lord who determines my steps in that. It is the Lord who works and moves. What if God is so great that He allows us to make choices that affect His plans for us because He is so incredible and awesome that there is room for change in His plans. What if we die to Him so that our uniqueness can be used in greater ways for Him than we could ever live out?

This past week the Jordan Team finally got our tickets. We made several changes before finally getting specific tickets. We saved $700 a person by making a last minute ticket change that cost us 1.5 days in Jordan. We have four all day layovers. One in LA, two in New York and one in Dallas. It means we only have five and a half days in Jordan. Our original plan gave us two days in Germany (one day on each end) and then seven in Jordan. Now our time in Jordan needs to be even more focused. However this lead to a change in our mindset. We were going to spend one day in Jordan touring and both days in Germany doing the same. With this last minute change two things have happened: First, our determination to make every moment in Jordan count has doubled and second, we realized that we have four days in very different parts of America to serve and recognize that we are still On Mission and not just touring. God just threw us a curve ball and is giving us a day to serve on the west coast, a day in the deep south and two days in the North East. Only God could arrange that. We’re writing contacts we have in all three cities to find ways we can leave the airports and serve for the days we’ll be there.

We had a choice. We plan our course. We could have taken those four days to tour different parts of America, but now the Lord is asking us for our willingness to follow His call and by agreeing He has already determined the missional steps we will take in all of those places.

The Lord Most High is incredible.

When God Leads…

Posted in Uncategorized on March 6, 2012 by Luke Summey

My heart is happy. So so happy. God provides the most beautiful blessings in life. Katie is here in the islands with me! The last few days have been wonderful with her here. She’s getting to see my daily life and ministry here and also we’ve been able to make plenty of time to get away and be with each other. Some of her family has been here for a short trip as well and so we got to see them for a little bit to! It’s nice to have my future wifey around to see her future hubby do the Jesus thing that we’ll be doing together soon. 😉  Also just nice to not have the whole long-distance thing be a factor for a week (surprise! It’s more fun in person!). Hopefully it will stop raining at some point this week and we’ll get our engagement and bridal pictures done.

Note number two: God is awesome. Just thought I’d throw that out there.

Numero tres: Ministry goeth well! Epoch, LGBT, meetings with students, speaking (happening often now =O) and all other things in related areas are going really really well! It’s super exciting! I’m pretty much on this Jesus ride and I just can’t get enough. I’m always tired at the end of the day but excited to see what God has done and it makes it all worth it; every time.

Rakam arb3: Jordan. I don’t think I’ve mentioned this in the blog yet, but seven of us from BCM Oahu are going to Jordan over the UH spring break (in two weeks) and four others will be going to Japan. The Japan team will be going to do disaster relief. I’m leading the Jordan team and we’ll be doing language and cultural exchange with college students at both the University of Jordan in the capital of Amman and also at Yarmouk University in Irbid. I’m really excited about both trips! However, I’m going to be blunt, we need help getting there. Jordan is twelve time zones different from Hawaii. In short, we’re traveling to the exact opposite side of the globe. That costs a lot of money. Here in Hawaii we don’t have a strong support base and so we’ve had to do a lot of extra fund-raising for this and we’re still very short of what we need. We’re buying the tickets today but most of us don’t have the money to pay the convention back for this. As always, I ask you to pray for both the trip and the financial means for us to make it but I also invite you to prayerfully consider if God would have you contribute to this. If you or anyone you know would like to, by all means, feel free! 😉  Checks can be made out to HPBC with a tag for BCM Oahu Missions and sent to this address:
2042 Vancouver drive
Honolulu, HI 96822

We’ve had weekly meetings where I’ve taught the team a lot about the country. I’ve made a lot of the food for them, taught them some of the language, taught them the history of the region, important cultural information, taught them the history of Islam and about Islam itself, and taught them about the Christians in the country and how they are different from Christians here in America. I’m really excited to see the cultural exchange; since Hawaii is a blend of Asian and Pacific cultures and they have experience with multiple cultures already they have a lot of potential to adapt quickly even though Arab culture is very different. The trip will be a quick 7 days in the country but I’m convinced it will be life-changing for our team. How could such a wonderful place like Jordan not be? =) Home home home. I’m taking people home with me. I can’t wait for them to meet my people, hear my language, see Arab hospitality, and fall in love with it.

افتقدك وأنت، يا الأردن