Wednesday 29 February 2012

Going Home!

I love being here in Mexico. I LOVE it!  This is where God wants me to be right now, and I couldn't be happier about it. There is nothing better and more fulfilling then knowing you are doing exactly what God wants you to be doing!

But, I am going to have to say that I got really really excited to go home for a visit in July when I bought my plane tickets today! =) I mean... by the time I go home it will be over 11 months since seeing everyone... that's a LONG time!

For all of you Nebraska people. It looks like I will be in Nebraska from July 22 or 23- August 3rd... and yes i want to see YOU!

Just to show my enthusiasm ... you should check out the Nebraska fight song... "there is no place like Nebraska" (not a good video, but still a good tune ;) )

Oh... just a side note... want to visit Mexico. Now seems to be a good time to buy tickets! A few days ago when I looked at tickets it was going to be over 700 dollars for me to fly from Mexico to Denver and then Omaha back to Mexico. BUT, today I payed $450 including taxes!

Monday 27 February 2012

Whats your favorite book?

Know what question I hate?

What is your favorite book?

I am not sure if i will ever be able to really answer this question. I really really love books with sarcastic protagonists. Books that I can not figure out with in the first three chapters. Books that make me feel something. I don't know if i can ever choose just one....There is so much out there!

Picking a nonfiction book would be easier for me. I still don't know if I could narrow it down to just one.

Actually, I think it would be easier for me to pick my least favorite books.

For instance, The Great Gatsby. ewwwwwww. Anything by Hemingway. The Grapes of Wrath. Basically, if it showed up on my American Lit book list, I probably didn't like it. Seriously, have you read their stuff? i could drink 8 shots of espresso, start reading that stuff and STILL end up in a coma. It is not for me...

By the way... if you like that stuff... then I am very happy for you. But, i will not be participating in your book club!

How about a couple fiction favorites...
1. Kristin Billerbecks Ashle Stockingdale Series... very funny!!
2. Harper Lee's To Kill a Mockingbird
3. Suzanne Collins' Hunger Games Serious... maybe... it is good. Give me five years and I will let you know if i still like it.
4. i really love Judi Picolts books... i think i have read all of them!
5. ummm... this is too much pressure.

Of course, I could then come up with a list of Christian books that i really enjoy... but i will save that for another time!

Side note: I have read 11 books so far this year, working on number 12!

What is your favorite book? I could use some new titles!

Sunday 26 February 2012

MK Spiritual Emphasis Camp

Yesterday we made the journey home from camp. I went to be the girls counselor and game leader!

It was a good time of playing outside, hanging out with fellow missionaries, games, camp food, worship and teaching! Sometimes I am surprised how much I miss camp =)

One kid accepted Christ at camp and one teen had a great conversation with one of the adults about assurance of his salvation!

I would say camp was a great success.... but now it's time for a nap!

Here are some pictures!

Monday 20 February 2012

Lesson Learned

So, today Tiffany and I were invited to Marta's house (a lady who leads the kids ministry at our church) to meet a young person and tell him about youth group, eat lunch... yadda yadda.

Anyways, we didn't want to go. Not because we didn't want to meet this person, not because we don't love Marta. We just didn't want to go. We had a hundred excuses too!
We were tired.
We needed to clean the house.
We have laundry to do.
We needed to get ready for classes.
We need to open the coffee shop.
We needed to catch up on emails.
We wanted a break.
It seems we never really have a day without something going on.... can't we just have a few hours to ourselves.

But, we went.... grumbling and kinda complaining the whole way there.

We get there... and the kid isn't there. We socialize for a while, play with the dogs, pray for a while... and then kinda decide he isn't even going to show up.... so we sit down to eat.

Then he shows up and we start a casual conversation with him, not really knowing what was expected of us. THEN Marta begins to talk this this kid (his name is Daniel). Marta knows his issues (which include... he is 15 and thinks his girlfriend is pregnant, issues with his parents, doesn't go to school, talks about the saint of death etc).... but, she lays out the gospel very very clearly... she let her passion and her faith in God shine brightly. Daniel took it all in, you could tell the entire time he was thinking and absorbing all of the information he was hearing her say.

By the end, Marta asked him if he wanted to pray and commit his life to Jesus and he said YES! So of course, we prayed with him, and then he had to leave.

When Tiffany and I left... almost in unison we said... "well that will teach us to not want to do something!"

God taught us a lesson.... He humbled us... and showed us how much He is working around us and through us even when we aren't expecting it.

Almost everyday I get to spend time in peoples houses... for coffee or a meal or whatever. Sometimes I don't feel like doing it. But, today was a perfect example of WHY i should do it. Even when I have things at home I need to do.

***Please pray for Daniel. That he starts reading his bible, that he draws close to God!
Pray also for Marta who plans on sharing the Gospel with his mother tomorrow!***

Friday 17 February 2012


Hey everyone!

Nicole came down to Ixtapaluca a few months ago to take video for CAM International... well, actually, Camino Global! (Remember, they are changing their name sooooon!)

Here is the video about our area:

Community Transformation in Mexico from Nicole Greiner on Vimeo.

And a video about the different Ministries that Camino Global has... this one also highlights our area here in Ixtapaluca!

Camino Global Ministries Teaser from Nicole Greiner on Vimeo.

Tuesday 14 February 2012

Happy Valentines Day!

Um.... I am almost afraid to actually say it but... whispers... happy valentines day. I am only afraid to say it because I have seen about 100 facebook statuses that say something like "I hate valentines day" or "thanks for the reminder I don't have a boyfriend" or "this day makes me feel miserable". These statuses make me sad. (on the other side of things my facebook status made fun of everyone who said... " I have the best boyfriend in the world, i am the luckiest girl, no one compares... blah blah blah... i saw about 100 of those as well... they were almost all identical!.")

I totally understand how much it kinda sicks not to have someone in your life to give you a cheesy card or flowers. Some days I wonder, just like many other, if you will ever get married, or have a Valentine. 

But, Valentines day isn't all there is to life... it shouldn't control your moods or your worth. You are worth FAR more then any relationship status on February 14th!

Anyways, my point is that although it may seem like Valentine's day is nothing but a day to remind all the singles around the world that they don't have someone special, it doesn't have to be. In fact, there are tons of things you can do on Valentines that don't require a date. 

Things I like about Valentines Day..
1. You don't have to share any of the Valentines candy with anyone! Unless you want to!
2.You can just hang out and watch a good movie or write or read... while all of your friend that are dating or married are out fighting the crowds in the restaurants
3. It is a day to remember all the people who LOVE me and who i love!
4. It is a day to remember to shower everyone you love... with extra love, encouragement and cheesy cards!
5. OR its a day you can do something extra special for someone you know that is going through a rough time.
6. It is also a great day to remember God's unending love for us.

1 John 4:7-8 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love.

Sunday 12 February 2012

Valentines Parents Appreciation Dinner

Today we held a appreciation dinner for the parents of our youth group! We actually gave a lot of the responsibility TO the youth this time. We bought the stuff and they decorated, they helped cook the meal, they helped clean, they came up with what they wanted to say to their parents!
They did a really good job!

I think we had 34 parents and then all of the youth in the house. Kinda crowded but it worked!

It was good to see the youth tell their parents how much they appreciate them. They read things, sang songs, served them dinner and wrote them little letters!

This was a well deserved treat for the parents!

Saturday 11 February 2012

We went to the Circus!

Fabian, Tiffany and I went to the circus tonight. I think we were the only ones without kids, but i felt like one!! =0)

It was a good time! If your in the area...  its the final days... hurry hurry!!

There wasn't any cameras allowed.... so the pictures aren't very good. But, here are some illegal ones taken from my phone (don't tell!)


I was about 14 years old.... not comfortable in my own skin and looking for a way to fit in. So, when a group of 15 teens stood in front of an 8 foot wall trying to figure how to conquer this obstacle in front of us, I (of course) went with the plan. We could build a human ladder... or maybe one person can run and fling themselves over the wall... or maybe one of the stronger guys could hoist one of the smaller girls up and over, no big deal. 

Everyone seemed to nod and go along with the plan. I sat there gnawing on my fingernails... scared. Methodically, they lifted each of us up and over the wall without any problem. But, that didn't seem to help my nerves. Then there were just three of us left. 

They looked at me, I looked at them, they looked at me, I wanted to run away. The others who have already survived this trust exercise were cheering us on 'you can do it!!!' The two older guys stepped close to me and my heart was in my throat. 

"So, we are just going to, kinda like, throw you over the top, ok"

"throw me?"

"ya, you will make it, and the people at the top will catch you"

I looked up at the people who were suppose to catch me. One was leaning over the edge dangling his arms, two girls were talking... eeek.

"Catch me?"

"Yes, just do it" The boy was losing patience. 
He took a step toward me and i was trembling. 

"ok" i finally said.

"Good" the other boy said " this is about trusting your team"

I nodded and the boys hoisted me up over their shoulders and counted to three

I felt my body fly up and over the top of the wall and I watched the "catchers" part like the red sea! The wall seemed to just float by as i scrambled the grab on to something, anything. Then it was all over, I stared at my fingers desperately gripping the only thing from keeping me from falling eight feet to the other side... the safety rail.

"huh" one of the boys said "we thought you would be heavier then that'

I was pulled back up and i glared at the people on my "team". I remember thinking... do not trust people when you hear the words "toss you over the edge" or "we will catch you" again.

Isn't it interesting that one bad experience can shape the way you trust people. I have never been very good at trusting people (not just because of the wall experience, although i am sure that didn't help!). 

I have come to the realization (a few years ago) that I can't completely trust others, until I trust and understand that God is really the thing holding my life in his hands. Sure people will hurt me or give me reasons to not trust them and that is part of life. But, God... He will never leave... He will never hurt me... He knows exactly what I need, when I need it. He LOVES me, unconditionally, and that will never, ever change.... even when people do.

Then there is forgiveness... but i am not going to even get started on that now ;)

Ya i know, this isn't a  new thought. Just something I was thinking about this morning!

P.S for the record, I have done one of those walls again, several times!

Thursday 9 February 2012

who wouldn't want to live here?!?!

Lately its been chilly and rainy here in good 'ol Ixtapaluca! Which means when its chilly and rainy here at 7000+ feet above sea level it SNOWS on the volcanoes at 1700+ feet!!
Normally the clouds are covering part or all of the volcanoes but yesterday afternoon and this morning they were almost clear!!!

Almost everyday when i look at these beautiful volcanoes these verses comes to mind...
Psalm 121:1-2
I lift my eyes up to the mountains(insert volcano :0) )
where does my help come from?
My help comes from the LORD
the maker of heaven and earth

It really is a tough place to live... having to look at these majestic volcanoes everyday ;)

Wednesday 8 February 2012

God is Awesome!

I just want to say it again....

I was laying in bed today thinking about this. You do a lot of thinking when your laying in bed sick!

I am in awe of Him. It seems like every time I turn around I am looking at evidence of God at work, not only in my life, but of the lives of everyone around me. Not simply the "oh, that's nice" sort of thing, but the "that couldn't be anything but god" sort of thing. It almost leaves me speechless!

God is working all around us, but how often are we too wrapped up in our own lives to recognize the hand of our creator? But, every moment could bring something simply amazing... one more reason to praise Him.

The thing I find even more amazing is that He chooses to use me in what He is doing. He certainly doesn't need me to get anything done. I am pretty confident that the God of the Universe could accomplish His purpose without me. What an incredible privilege it is to be a part of the work He is doing in people's lives.

Tuesday 7 February 2012

Down and Out for the Count.

Yesterday we had a team meeting. I could feel myself feeling a little worse with each passing hour. That is a weird feeling, i think i would rather just wake up sick then feel the decline!

Yep, today I have been sick. Most of the time I feel like I can fight off a cold or illness or at least work through it... but not today. Today I have been pretty useless.... I slept until my dog had to go to the bathroom -- took her out, and slept some more! The only real time I got out of bed was when Tiffany (I love that girl!) brought me over lunch.

My dog has been super sweet all day. She just curled up next to me, with her head on me. I think she knows i don't feel very good... and she thinks that her touch will make me better =)

Anyways, I am awake right now and wanted to stop in and say Hi! Today I am thankful for ib profin (which is the only thing that makes me feel a step above road kill! Oh and i am also thankful for sleep!

Going back to sleep now. Hopefully tomorrow i can function!

Monday 6 February 2012

T2 Team!

Meet my team here in Mexico! Not everyone works directly with each other but we get together (in theory) 4 ish times a year to pray and encourage each other! We are from 4 different countries. =) 

Today we got together... we laughed, we prayed, we did some business stuff and switched languages about 1000 times.... usually mid sentence! 

Sunday 5 February 2012

Super Bowl Sunday!

Rod and Mayra had a few friends over for the stupid (i mean super) bowl. It was a good time eating, planying cards and hanging out!  The girls played cards.. the guys watched the game. We left right after watching Madonna attempt to shake it during the half time show!

Here are some pics (Thanks Rod, I stole your pics!)

Saturday 4 February 2012

Puppies and Coffee

Yes, this is a three post kinda day... =)

Today was suppose to be the "Grand Opening" of the coffee shop. But, just the youth showed up, for the most part, so we played games, drank coffee and just hung out-- oh yes, the Cottrill's made an appearance as well!

I took a couple pictures of different coffee shop stuff, i thought i would show you!

But first, I want to show you this puppy... I named him George. He hung around the coffee shop and the youth played with him. I tried to get my dog to like him so that i could keep him, but no luck... Maggie doesn't like other dogs. After trying to give him away he went home with the youth... but the little guy stole my heart. He needed a bath and a vet visit (he was attacked but you can't see it in this picture.) He was the sweetest little thing.

And some random coffee shop pictures!

My God My King

One generation shall command your works to another, and shall declare your mighty acts. On the glorious splendor of your majesty, and on your wondrous works, i will meditate. They shall speak of the might of your awesome deeds. - Psalm 145: 3-7

We all search for a purpose- a way to make a lasting difference. But some people go to extremes to do that, don't they? But, by searching out God, knowing Him and living in true worship our lives will express the glory of God. This manifests itself in acts of service or talking about the Truth in a world that desperately needs to hear it.

If there truly is a generation after God's own heart, our generation then we must be passionate about declaring God. The motivation is to "pour fourth the fame" of out King. To give GOD the credit rather than bask in our own self perceived greatness or accomplishments.

But really, this totally takes the pressure off of us to perform or self promote because there is the ONE deserves all of the credit. The "15 min of fame" mentality clicks away like a time bomb for those seeking individual fame, it is God's fame that will resound throughout all generations.

Let us show the world the myriad of ways God's fame is pronounced in our lives. Let's help those around us say "My God, My King"!


I am really kinda jealous of my friends at home who get to play in the snow today! I really do LOVE the snow!

*I love how beautiful it is on the fields when there are no foot prints in it.
*I love seeing my dog prancing around in it.
*i love when you get so much snow you can't leave your house!
*I love the calmness that snow brings (unless your at walmart).
*I love being curled up on a snowy day reading a good book with a cup of coffee or chai!
*I love playing in it... sledding, making snow men, snow ball fights, building forts (maybe i never really grew up)
* I actually enjoy putting my headphones on and shoveling!

The list could go on.... But to be fair to my lovely friends who are drowning in snow today there are a few things i don't enjoy...
* 30+ mile an hour winds that burn your skin it is so cold.
* scraping the windows of my car
* When the power goes out because of the snow... but it does make you appreciate heat when you have it!
* getting my car stuck when it slides off the road in a snow storm (although those are usually the best stories)!

Do you think it is too far off to ask God for a freak snow in Ixtapaluca?