Tuesday, September 11, 2012


Pablo Ortiz and Frank De Martini. Who are these men and why in the world am I writing about them?

Before last night I had never heard of them, yet their stories greatly moved me.

Last night I was channel surfing and came across a television special on 9/11. This particular one was called Heroes of the 88th Floor. It had survivors sharing their horrific stories, how they were trapped on a floor or in an elevator. They gave up hope of being rescued. Then two men came, pried the doors open and helped people find their ways to the stairwell. The show had survivor after survivor telling how Frank and Pablo helped them. "If it wasn't for Frank and Pablo, I wouldn't be here," was something I heard often from their lips. At the end of the show, one man said, they gave their life for me, and I am willing to give my life for others like they did.

Pablo Ortiz and Frank De Martini were simply two average men. They didn't possess supernatural strength. They weren't body builders who could bench hundreds of pounds. They were fathers, husbands. They saved over 70 people. Many of those 70 people then turned around and helped others escape.

At the very end of the program, a chorus was played in the background while they continued to show footage and survivors recounted their stories. Not many people would recognize the song by the music alone. Here are the lyrics:

What a fellowship, what a joy divine,
Leaning on the everlasting arms;
What a blessedness, what a peace is mine,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.

Leaning, leaning, safe and secure from all alarms;
Leaning, leaning, leaning on the everlasting arms.

Oh, how sweet to walk in this pilgrim way,
Leaning on the everlasting arms;
Oh, how bright the path grows from day to day,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.

What have I to dread, what have I to fear,
Leaning on the everlasting arms?
I have blessed peace with my Lord so near,
Leaning on the everlasting arms.

Elisha A. Hoffman 1887
"Leaning on the Everlasting Arms"

I will never forget what happened on 9/11/01. I will never forget the stories I heard how God used two simple men and how their actions of courage, valor, and honor brought peace, hope and comfort to those they saved, and to all of us who have heard those stories.

Out of this truly horrific evil event, people found peace, comfort, and safety-all these things that only come from an everlasting Father.

Do you want to have this peace?

Frank De Martini

Pablo Ortiz

Monday, May 28, 2012

Looking Up

Lately, I've been wondering why God is leading me to go home. Don't get me wrong, I want to go home, and I miss my family and friends, but I don't know why I'm supposed to go home. I have vague ideas of why, but no real path set before me.

It's weird to not know what is next in life. I know what I want to do, but God isn't telling me to do what I want!

So what's next?

Tonight, I was reading my Bible and came across this devotional about the Israelites in the desert, and how God showed them His will by the cloud during the day and the fire at night. (Numbers 8:15-23) All they had to do is look up and see God's will!

How amazing would it be if God did that for me!?! How easy would it be, to just follow God faithfully, and to know that He is leading you each step of the way.

It's not so easy for this modern day girl. I'm not an Israelite and I'm not living in the desert. I've never seen a cloud that looks like fire at night. So, how am I supposed to know God's next step for me?

I guess it comes from reading the Word each day, and spending time with Him, which by the way, is something that I've been neglecting! :(

So, what to do when you don't know what to do next? Do what God told you to do the last time you were sure He was speaking to you...and KEEP LOOKING UP!

Even though my heart is telling me to stay here, my brain is reminding my heart, it's time to go home. It's time to return to my roots and to see what's in store for me next. I'm praying and hoping that it's something great, because it's sure going to be hard to leave here, only something truly great can refill the Russia size

d part of my heart that I'll be leaving here.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Bigger Than I Can Imagine

Today, on the way home from church, I was with one of my dear Russian friends and she shared that her parents had recently been in the states for a conference. At the conference, they found out that the church had been praying for my brother, John, and me. Somehow, this church knew of our struggles that we are dealing with in our current living/working situation. I have no idea how they found out, but I am so grateful for their prayers!

I think that's just like God to not only reassure us that people are praying for us, but to also put us in our place and to show us how big HE is.

Sure, I have friends in California, but I haven't really shared with any of them the struggles that we are experiencing, and I know that my brother and John as well haven't shared with anyone. We have no idea how this church knows, but just knowing makes it much better! People are standing with us, and seeking God for us! Wow! I am amazed at how God works for us!

What an amazing God we serve!!

And to the people out there praying for me, my brother, and John....THANK YOU!!! Just knowing that others are praying for us, helps so much!!!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Getting to Know Me :)

I haven't done one of these survey in years, so I thought I'd put one on here!!

What woke you up this morning?
Some weird sound near my fridge! Yikes!!!

Where are you?
In my apartment in Vladivostok

Is tomorrow going to be a good day?
Hopefully a good day!!

What’s on your mind RIGHT NOW?
This upcoming week and all the things I have to do for it!! AAHHHH!!!!

What kind of home would you like?
a comfortable one

Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
still traveling the world!

Do you listen to music every day?
Oh yeah! Music is such a huge part of my life!!

Do you still go trick or treating?
ha! no!

What was the last thing you ate?
frozen grapes

Are you a fast typer?

What's your favorite color?
It depends on my mood.

Whats your favorite type of soda?

Have you ever moved?
Many times

Have you ever won an award?

Are you listening to music right now?
yeah, Hillsong-Ты мой Господь

Who makes you mad?
Mean and rude people!

Have you ever heard a song written about you?
yeah, my brother wrote one for me.

What do you do when you’re mad?
call my mom

When was the last time you actually cried?
last week

Ever cried yourself to sleep?
oh yeah, of course. i'm a girl!

Do certain songs make you cry?
not usually

What usually makes you cry?
something very moving or sad

Are you usually a happy person?

What makes you the happiest?
several things make me happy, but being with my friends and family makes me the happiest!

Monday, April 9, 2012


"Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope." Romans 5:3-4 (NIV)

Wow! This verse was what I needed to hear today! Life has not been easy the past three months. There has been almost something each day to deal with, and I'm not going to lie, it's been tough. Lately, it's been to the point that I just want to go home. Then God always comes to the rescue and reminds me that my time here in Russia is short and to tread on through all the daily muck and mire.

I often wonder, when another issue/problem arises, why there is so much spiritual opposition? It's not like I am Mother Teresa or Corrie Ten Boom. The work I do here, isn't something that is out of this world amazing. It's simple. I'm a teacher. So, why on earth am I facing so much opposition?

The only answer I've come up with, is that God is using all of these trials to make me seek Him. When I seek Him, I grow as a person and in my walk with Him. I know so far, that He has taught me from people I've come across, to watch out for certain characteristics and behaviors in my own life, to purge of them while I am young and not to let them take root and grow.

I am grateful for what I have learned, but sometimes I just need a break, and today was one of those days.

But God you are ever faithful and You have reminded me yet again that, "we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance, character; and character, hope."

Tuesday, March 27, 2012


Over the past few years, I've felt like God was telling me to write a book for young ladies. It would be a "how to book" that helped them figure out how to be godly young ladies.

I've started writing this book several times, and each time I get lost in what I want my message to be, and I eventually quit writing.

The other night, I was talking with a friend and he reminded me that the best way to start anything is with prayer.

I know that, yet I forgot to do that each time in the past.

So, this time, I'm bathing this thing in prayer!

Who knows what will happen with it this time around, hopefully I'll finish it, but I know that this time it will be something God has directed, not Alexa directed.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

Stories...We've All Got 'Em

At our school, we have this hard working man, who is definitely a Jack-of-all-Trades. He knows how to fix basically anything.

Tonight, I just happened upon him in the hallway and we started talking. One thing led to another, and I found myself a few minutes later, sitting and talking with this man and my brothers, and he was just pouring out his history to us without us even asking one question.

I knew that he wasn't originally from Russia, and I'd been told he was from the 'Stans, but I didn't know which 'Stan.

As we sat there and talked about many things, from holes in the shower to "meat", I learned that there was more to this man than the world sees. He's from Kazakhstan and comes from a family of teachers, his mom is a doctor, and his brother owns a window factory. He taught for six years, teaching elementary children, and then decided to move to Korea. He loved Korea but he couldn't keep his visa and was deported, not to Kazakhstan, but to Russia, because it was cheaper. He was unloaded from the boat, he grabbed his two suitcases that held his entire world, and he walked into a new unfamiliar world.

He knew no one. He didn't have a job. Or a place to stay.

I didn't find out his entire story, but I know that God allowed him to experience all of this and planted him eventually at a Christian school. He is surrounded by missionaries, and he attends the weekly church services, and some of the Ms here say that he has repented and is a believer. Where he grew up, the main religion is Islam.

I can't help but wonder at God's working in this man's life.

It makes me stop and think about my own life, about those times I questioned God's plan for me.

Thank you, God, for the reminder that you are in control of everything. Also, thank you for reminding me, that everyone has a story, and that I need to stop and listen to them from time to time!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Patience...What is That?!?

So, I've been reminded the past few weeks how hard it is to be a lady in this day and age, especially when it comes to friendships with boys. There is a very fine line that one walks, and it's very easy to fall over the edge. I've been relearning that I need to be patience and let the man be a man, and that isn't so easy for this modern day woman!

I've been told through various movies, television shows, and songs that it's okay if I take charge and go after what I want, but that isn't the Biblical view of a lady. We need to let the man be the pursuer.

I do think that it must be hard for a man in this day in age with all the women's movements and demands for equality to figure out how exactly to pursue a woman. Let me give you a hint men, if the woman you like is a godly woman, then pursue her like crazy, it's what she wants! I know it's scary because you have to put your heart out there, but it's your job as a man!

Now on to my job as a Christian woman, I need to be patience and remind myself that my goal in life is to glorify God and not seek out a husband. I need to be satisfied with my life the way it is now, and continue to live it daily for Him, and to daily give over this "friendship" and let the Lord handle it.

By the way, this message isn't directed at any certain guy and I'm not using my blog as a way of pursuing anyone, it's just an honest writing from my heart. Maybe, by writing about what I am struggling with, God can use it to encourage my single brothers and sisters in Christ.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Embracing the New?

I read today that for someone to be able to change and embrace the new, they have to first let go of the old. I understand this, and it sounds great and all, but it's not as simple as it seems.

What if someone hurt you? It's hard to let go of the past if that means letting go of the hurt. Yeah you need to get over it and forgive that person. But what happens when you forgive them? Does it mean that no one else knows or remembers what that person did to you?

I think that is why it's so hard to forgive someone who's hurt you. It's the fear that Satan uses to tell you that no one else will remember how badly that person treated you, OR if you forgive them, then the world will think that it was just a little incident and that you overreacted.

It's hard letting go, even after you've forgiven them. But, it's a needed step to embrace the new.

So, today, even though part of me is screaming not to(the sinfully human part), I will give up the hurt to God. I will let it go and let the Father deal with it.

I am embracing the new!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Quest for Marshmallows...

The other day, we were driving down the road and I saw a sign advertising "Marshmallows, Made in the U.S.A.". Since then, every store that I've been in, I've looked and looked for them. After a few weeks, I gave up my search of the deliciously sugary, puffy bites of cloud.

Today, I was walking through a store, I happened to look over my shoulder at the aisle next to me, and there on the shelf were....MARSHMALLOWS!! They even have two sizes! Big ones and small ones!!! They are fresh and they even taste like the ones from the states, and aren't a cheap imitation of the real things!!

I think God is a lot like this when it comes to our future mate. So many of us single females, are actively searching and hunting down/stalking Mr. Right. It's time that we stopped looking, and started living this season of life that God has given us. Don't wait to live, start living now.

And, one day, while you are living your life and not out on the hunt, Mr. Right will just show up. He will be exactly what you need, and God will supply you with an amazing man of God that respects, loves, and cherishes you.

How refreshing it is, to just simply focus on what God has called us to do, rather than spending our time and effort on the quest for love.


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