Adventuring with Jesus

Above: Hanging out with youth in Travertine Falls, lower Grand Canyon

I’m thankful for the time that I’ve had in July and August to rest and rejuvenate and engage in a huge passion of mine for the outdoors. I spent time in Arizona with family and working as a riverguide with Grand Canyon Youth.


It’s been an adventurous summer – and indeed for each of us living every day with Jesus is truly an adventure.

In his book “Love Does,” Bob Goff says “Every day God invites us on the same kind of adventure. It’s not a trap where He sends us a rigid itinerary, He simply invites us. God asks what it is He’s made us to love, what it is that captures our attention, what feeds that deep indescribable need of our souls to experience the richness of the world He made. And then, leaning over us, He whispers, “Let’s go do that together.”

Similarly, through prayer and reflection, this summer I felt God asking me a question, “Kelly, what do you want?”

While there are many things in life that I want, at the deepest part of my soul, I always come back to one answer: I want to see the Church be the fully united, reconciled bride of Christ.

As God’s people, we are to be a sign of God’s kingdom which has come. Through Christ, God came to reconcile us with Himself, and as bearers of this message, we are the physical body of Christ here on earth.

Today’s world can be characterized by hatred and division, but the Church, like no other institution, can embody the reality of a dynamic reconciling love.

So, what do I want? Simply that all people who call on Jesus as the Lord and Savior would be one.

That is my greatest passion and my heartbeat. Despite trials and hardship, I can’t get away from it. It’s what drives me during the day, and it’s what keeps me up at night. Thus, I’m beginning to see that my life is a prayer with Jesus, yearning that we would be one, so that the world will more fully recognize Him as the Son of God (John 17:23).

There are small signs of this kingdom coming here in Boston. There was an article this month about UniteBoston posted on the Paulist Fathers “Koinonia” newsletter, which is super cool!

Also this month, there was an article about Boston from a nationally recognized ministry stating that “Many of Boston’s denominational and church leaders are passionate about unity and are sharing life and discipleship across Orthodox, Pentecostal, Catholic and Evangelical congregations. In fact, many churches blend the best from various church traditions. This is a trend that is taking traction in other cities, and Boston will surely provide fascinating models for unity.”

UniteBoston is just a small part of the unity that God is bringing forth here in Boston – and we’re so grateful to have you be a part of things!  The best is yet to come ~

Advertisements

Update: Missionary Support Account Change

Hello!

God is doing amazing things through Journey Church and UniteBoston, and it’s because of you that I’m able to do what I do every day! (By the way, have you checked out our awesome new website www.uniteboston.com?)

We are in an exciting season with UniteBoston. Due to God’s grace and your partnership, we’ve grown more than ever before! Now that we’ve received our tax-exempt status as a 501c3 organization, I’m now able to receive the funds that constitute my salary through UniteBoston, rather than through Elim Fellowship.

We have a skilled finance volunteer with us to help process our finances, which means that more of the money that you give will go directly towards our work in the city, rather than the overhead processing fees that were charged through Elim Fellowship.

This is good news! I would be honored if you would consider joining the team of people that is supporting God’s work in Boston through this ministry!

To do this, simply go to uniteboston.com/give and click on “Staff Support” in the drop down menu. Recurring donations can be made for your convenience.

If you prefer to give by check, include “Kelly Steinhaus” in the memo line and mail it to:
UniteBoston
P.O. Box 961162
Boston, MA 02196

Thank you for your partnership in this ministry. I know there are many places you could give, so I don’t take for granted that you choose to invest in God’s kingdom through UniteBoston! I’m deeply grateful to be here in Boston and living out the things that God has called me to, and I wouldn’t be able to do it without you. So, from the bottom of my heart, seriously… THANK YOU!!

Be assured of this promise: “Therefore, my dear brothers, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.” (1 Cor 15:58)

Much love in Christ,
Kelly

It’s Labor Day! Get out and Play

Highlights from this month:
Gearing up for 10 Days Boston! September 24 to October 4
Journey Church Free Community Car Wash
Labor Day was initiated in 1882 to create a holiday for workers. That means that Labor Day is a day for play! (hey, that rhymes!)

What are you doing on Labor Day?

This past month, I’ve incorporated a practice of asking myself every morning, “How are you doing?” and “What do you need?” and then inviting God into that conversation. It’s hard  to explain how this simple time of reflection has literally transformed my life, as I tend to be terrible at taking care of myself.

Gottfried Benn said that, “Whoever wants to understand much must play much” and I’ve begun to understand that one of my greatest needs in life is to play with friends.

This past month, I’ve swam in a waterfall waterside, completed the ice bucket challenge, and even floated in the midst of the sparkly bioluminescence in the ocean. At right, my friend Sarah and I with crazy seaweed hair during a ministry picnic.

Play gives me a fresh perspective on life and fills me with joy. In turn, I find that I’m more productive at work and overall a whole lot happier.

What about you? Are you good at taking care of yourself and tuning into what you need? I want to challenge you to incorporate this practice into your daily devotion time, so you can better take care of yourself and allow the fullness of who God made you to be to shine!

Read more about this in my sermon: Where the Spirit Dwells

UniteBoston Updates:

  • God is Uniting Boston with a Nationwide Prayer MovementWe are in the midst of a 40-day season of fasting and prayer leading up to October 4th.
  • It’s been so cool to see how God is bringing together the Christian Community in Boston – Check out 10daysboston.com to see the full line-up of geographical gatherings, ethnic groups, and denominational streams involved and watch the Youtube Video Update at right! If you don’t live near Boston, check out 10days.net for the 20+ locations throughout the nation taking part in these ten days of worship, fasting, and prayer
  • We had our first official UniteBoston Board meeting –  It is really great to have others oversee the mission of UniteBoston and the work we are doing in the city.

Journey Church Updates

  • Journey Church is preparing for our public launch on September 28! We are excited about this opportunity to welcome people home to Jesus and to the family of God. This week, our advertisements on the subway went up, and next week we will have a missions team from New York come to join us! Watch our Launch Video here
  • I organized a free car wash for the Cambridge community a few weeks ago, and we had an amazing response. We washed nineteen cars and had some amazing conversations with families in the area!

Prayer Requests and Praises!

  • Praise! I’m so thankful for how the Lord has rejuvenated me in this season and for the amazing friends He has placed in my life (yes, that’s you!)
  • Prayer! I’m beginning seminary this fall at Gordon Conwell’s Boston campus. I’m really excited about this opportunity to further my theological training and effectiveness as a minister of the gospel of Jesus Christ. As such, my monthly expenses have increased. Let me know if the Lord is stirring you to be a part of the team of people that is sowing into all that He is doing through UniteBoston and Journey Church.  Together we can change the world!
  • Prayer! Finalizing all the logistical details for 10 Days Boston can be stressful – pray that I would find peace amidst all the moving pieces.
Ecclesiastes 3:13 says “It is a gift from God to be able to eat and drink and experience the good that comes from every kind of hard work.”

As important as it is for us to labor and work hard, it is to play. So get off your computer and go have some fun :)

Kelly

Unbearable Beauty

photo 1-12“I am roaring drunk with the lust of life and adventure and unbearable beauty.” – Everett Ruess

This month I’ve been totally wowed by the incredible world around us. Above is just one moment of the adventure – jumping off of a sandy beach in the bottom of the Grand Canyon.

From the intricacy of tiny white flower petals to the expanse of a massive canyon, every iota of our world speaks of passion, love, and beauty. The great outdoors have a way of making you seem small and insignificant, and giving you a fresh perspective.

But the existence of this unbearable beauty everywhere begs an explanation.

Ann Voskamp asks simply “How can we behold loveliness – and say that this world looks like this if there were no God?”

Truly, through everything God has made, His eternal power and divine nature become visible – so that we have no excuse for not believing (Romans 1:20).
This month has been a month of healing and refreshment – I got dirty with my sister in the Flagstaff Mud Run and guided youth rafting down the San Juan River. I also had the opportunity to spend wonderful moments with my extended family at a gathering to celebrate my Papa’s life, and my Granny from Colorado flew in to visit – these are memories that I truly cherish. I also preached a sermon on how God’s power to heal points us to the wonder of God.

As I leave tomorrow to return to Boston, you can join me in thanking God for the restoration He has done in my heart and soul these past few weeks. I am filled with excitement and anticipation for what God will do this fall – The launch of Journey Church on September 28th, and 10 Days Boston from September 24th to October 4th!

Spending time in nature attunes me to the age-old rhythms of time, of wind and water – God is so big! Yet that He concerns himself with the ins and outs of our day-to-day lives continually astounds me.

When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him? (Psalm 8:3)

In His abundant, unbearably beautiful love,

Kelly

Loving Cambodia’s Children: May Newsletter

Highlights from this month:
May: Loving children at Cambodian Hope Orphanage
June: back to Boston!
11 months in 5 minutes: Highlight Video from the World Race
This is the last month on the World Race…crazy! We worked in an orphanage in Phnom Penh, Cambodia. I really enjoyed loving on the children that society has largely rejected. We organ
ized a field day for the King’s birthday where we had jump rope, water balloons, and relays – so much fun (see photo on the right)

We also raised some money and gave the kids new sports equipment as well as a refrigerator. I enjoyed teaching some volleyball clinics – but sometimes they learned too well! In the photo below, you can see me getting “schooled” by one of the young men.

In Cambodia, I also saw extreme poverty, which really broke my heart. We met some children who lived in a dump and worked 8+ hours a day collecting bottles and cans so they could eat. I also befriended some young Cambodian girls on my early morning runs, and the mother asked me if I wanted to buy her children. This experience really moved me…Read my blog about ithere.

Here’s Payton’s highlight video that she put together from our month in Cambodia:

Next Stop: Boston
After almost 30 hours of travel, I’ve arrived back to America. It feels good to be here back on American soil, but strange as well. I’ll be spending a few days here at home in Arizona, and then will be in Boston from June 6 to 26. I’m excited to re-connect with friends and people laboring for the Kingdom in Boston – I’ll be emailing many of you so we can meet up!

You may be asking: What’s next? God has given me clarity about returning to Boston, and continuing in our efforts to help the Christian community work together with UniteBoston. I’ve traveled all over the world, and I can honestly say that there is nowhere else that I want to be – Boston is where my heart is. I’m excited about applying what I’ve learned in experiencing cultures around the world.  I’m also really looking forward to continuing to serve with Journey Church and reach the people of Cambridge with the love of Christ.

World Race Highlight Video
These past few days, I’ve been working on the difficult task of summing up eleven months of experiences with the World Race in just a few minutes. I’ve really been amazed by power of Christ’s love, so I made a video centered around this theme – posted below. I’d really encourage you to watch it!

Prayer Requests & Praises

  • Praise! I have been amazed at the grace and protection that has been present with me these past eleven months. I feel this is largely due to your prayers. So for those of you who have lifted me up time and again, I want to say, “Thank you!”
  • Pray for a smooth transition as I re-enter the ministry scene in Boston – that God would give me clear guidance and direction, and I might be able to integrate these experiences effectively
  • Pray for refreshment and renewal as I rest and spend time with family

This month, I’ve been amazed to reflect on the transformation that has occurred since I left one year ago. I really feel God moving me from glory, to glory:
“Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we, who will unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory…(2 Corinthians 3:17-18)

May He continue to transform us and the world,

Kelly

Miracles in Malaysia: April Newsletter

Highlights from this month:
This month: Homeless ministry in Penang, Malaysia
Next Month: Working at an Orphanage in Phnom Pehn, Cambodia 
Visit to the Orang-Asli Aboriginal people
Miracles! You may have opened this email to see some crazy story of healing or sign that could have happened only by the hand of God. Yes, there have been miracles. But I’m learning that every day is a miracle in itself. It just takes the right perspective.

This month I worked at a homeless drop-in center called Kawan, which means “friends” in Malay. We served breakfast and lunch to approximately 100 people three days a week. My job was to welcome our new friends as they walked in the door. There were a few people that I really got to know during our time there – It was a miracle to see how God opened up conversations and how they grew as they began to learn about Him. I really enjoyed getting to know all of my new kawans, and throughout this month, God has been using these friends to teach me what it means to be poor in spirit. I took my video camera around with me one day – check out this blog to see the “insider’s perspective” of a typical day serving at Kawan.

Two days a week, we also volunteered at the Adventist Hospital, where we helped to raise funds for patients who couldn’t afford heart surgery. We did this by playing music the waiting rooms. Over the course of three weeks, our team raised 18,500 RM, which is over $6,000 USD! This was the second highest amount that has ever come in by a World Race team! It was truly a miracle to see how people opened up their hearts to give to this cause. We also worked with the hospital chaplains to pray with patients. My teammate Jillian wrote an amazing blog about our work in the hospital called “A Day in the Life: Malaysia” – definitely check it out!

Here’s our highlight video from the month:

Visit to the Orang Asli People
We had the incredible opportunity of visiting the Orang Asli people, one of Malaysia’s aboriginal tribes. It was quite a journey – We had to take a ferry, then drive for four hours and then cross a pond on a boat to get there…When we arrived, the children danced and sang a song for us. We were the first white people ever to visit their village! I was so amazed to see how much joy they had, with so little – it was truly a miracle. Read my blog about this experience here  I wish I could take all of you to meet them – but the beauty of technology is that you can go to the village on your computer

Next Month: Orphanage Ministry in Cambodia
It’s crazy for me to think that I’ve been gone for ten months already, and that Cambodia is our last month of ministry on the World Race. In about 36 hours, we will be leaving on a plane to Phnom Penh, Cambodia. We’ll be working at an orphanage in Phnom Penh, Cambodia – I’m excited to hang out with a lot of little ones all month!

Finally, don’t miss a Recipe for Banana Roti, a favorite treat of ours on the World Race!

Prayer Requests & Praises

  • Pray for strength and endurance that I might finish the last month on the World Race well
  • Pray for clarity, that I would find time to process through everything that God has been teaching me, and that He would give me wisdom for my next steps
  • Pray for patience and discernment for relationships I have built with my teammates
  • Pray for Boston – My heart has been burdened by the recent events during the Boston marathon. Yet, it was amazing to see how the body of Christ in Boston came together during this time – read my blog about this here 

This month, God has been filling me with a lot of joy – and as Psalm 118:24 says:

“This is the day the Lord has made; Let us rejoice and be glad in it!”

Rejoice today, for this day is a gift that God has given you!

Kelly