Friday, May 30

Officially Obsessed

Wow. I only wish I could describe this place to you. The past few days have been wonderful. The picture to the left is actually on the roof of the Dream Center (which isn't allowed...but we interns have connections, haha). These are just a couple of the people who have blessed my life already. How refreshing it is to be around kindred spirits. The unity already that is already beginning to develop is unlike any I have ever experienced. Yesterday my roommate arrived...Lindsay - who is legitimately one of just those nicest of nice people. Way nicer than me :) Yesterday I went on a tour at the Dream Center and got to see everything. This campus is gigantic - and thats an understatement. I'm not even going to try to explain it.

Last night I attended the Thursday night service that is held weekly at Angelus Temple (the church a couple blocks away that is connected to the Dream Center). The service was awesome. I am completely blown away by the way this church operates. All I could think was - this is how a church is supposed to look...every type of person you can imagine was there. Maybe this will give you a little glimpse - Sinbad's daughter was on the worship team, the entire Men's and Women's and Teens Discipleship program attends (this is the one year intense rehab program @ the Dream Center), the homeless and druggies from Skid Row are bussed in, eighty year old women, a couple of Laker's dancers doing a dance performance, and me - white Arkansas/Texas girl. Put all of this together - worship is powerful, genuine, and these people actually believe in Who they are singing about, its so evident. Help my unbelief Lord. The message was beautiful and ended with a time of prophetic words to sons and daughters of the Abba Father...How beautiful to see women with abusive, non-existent dads at the altar weeping, as the words of the one True Father were spoken over them. Restoration happened. The Spirit dwells here.

Too much to write about, I was orientation. This place is pretty lax and chill / there is so much going on - you just kind of have to figure it out and jump in. Part of our orientation consisted of a trip to Target, a 3 story Target might I add, every girls' dreamland. You've never seen anything like it - the shopping carts had their own escalators. The food around these parts is well...all donated. Praise Jesus. You never know quite what you are eating, but I cannot complain as I sit with the homeless who are ravenously eating every bite. Anyway, today we also met Pastor Matthew Barnett - the master mind behind who started and runs this place. He also preaches at the church I mentioned earlier, Angelus Temple. He is so down to earth and all about Jesus and restoring the broken. He was so encouraging and thanked all of us interns a million times for taking part in this ministry. Something he said to us really stuck out to me as he speaking about how the Lord has truly blessed the Dream Center, he said - "If you first reach the people that nobody wants then you will eventually reach the people that everyone wants." Amen, he was referring to some of Hollywood's very own who have contributed and attend church here.

This is enough for now, although I have much more to write about. Know that words do no justice. I am off to go for a run...then all the interns are headed to Santa Monica tonight for a night of fun :)

Wednesday, May 28

KT meets Cali, Dream Center, and New Faces all in one day

Ladies and gentlemen...I made it. First things first, good thing I didn't bring my vehicle out here. The traffic out here is unreal and the drivers are lunatics. I couldn't have done it. So, good choice number one.

Lets back up...I said my goodbyes this morning to my family and then my dad took me to the airport. After shedding a couple of tears - I was off. As much as I like to go and "bravely" do random things - I have decided it will never be easy to leave home...and for that I am grateful. My flight was interesting, the child to adult ratio was about ohhhhh 7:1. Not sure how that happens, but good thing I like kiddos. I conversed with the sweetest Hispanic woman sitting next to me for a good part of the flight. After telling her what I would be doing this summer, she just kept looking at me saying "Do not be afraid" and "It's going to be ok". Needless to say, 5 minutes into our conversation she had whipped out her napkin and was writing every bit of her contact information down and made me promise I would call if I ever, ever need anything - or if I want to come to her beach house on Newport beach. God is good :) The majority of the flight was spent with my iPOD playing and just talking to my Jesus about everything I was feeling. I thought I would read -- but found it best to just talk to Him and give the next 3 months fully to my Father.

And - yes, my biggest fear laid to rest when someone was there (in fact a whole greeting crew) was at LAX when I arrived. Two of them are on staff at the Dream Center - and we picked up two other girl interns as well. I have already met some very incredible people from all over the US and even abroad - hilarious people, I have laughed a lot. My roommate has not arrived, but I have met a couple of people on my hallway. I am currently in the coffee shop/cafe in the Dream Center (coffee is really fabulous here I have already learned). I am just people watching...I just want to know everyone here. Tomorrow we will go on a tour at some point - I haven't seen very much of this place yet but know one thing -- this place is HUGE and its literally in the middle of downtown. Pretty phenomenal.

Fun things I have already seen - the famous Hollywood sign, the Lakers stadium, the Nokia theater (featuring Kenny Chesney tonight), USC, a lot of palm trees, and the ocean :)
Thats all I have - I'm sleepy - time difference is killing me. Oh yes, and thank you so much for all the phone calls/texts/messages throughout this past week. You have no idea how much of an encouragement you are to this vulnerable spirit :) Goodnight.

Monday, May 26

LA - Ready or Not Here I Come

...I cannot believe it, but I have given in and joined the blog force for the summer. Oh well, it will be an effective way to communicate to the many of you who have asked me to keep you updated on what is going on out in LA. For those of you who are still confused about what this summer holds for me -- watch this video...this seems to help people receive a glimpse of where I will be and a better understanding as to what the Dream Center is and the type of ministry that I will be involved in over the next 3 months. Here is the link:

As for the good stuff - 48 hours and counting. I fly out from Arkansas on Wednesday (May 28) at 2pm. I am really excited, a little nervous, and just ready to be there. I will feel better once I have everything packed; for those of you who know me well...I am a tad bit OCD when it comes to having things organized and orderly. I am learning you can only be so organized when packing for 3 months. Packing quickly becomes cramming. I really know very little about what I will be doing from day to day - I have the 29th to get acclimated and will begin my internship orientation on the 30th. As I have told many of you, about the only thing I know is that I will have a three hour block each week to do my laundry. I guess it's a good thing that my heart is exhilarated by "the unknown".

In the meantime, I am trusting and holding fast to a calling that the Spirit began to whisper to me back in December. I have been reading The Valley of Vision...(a collection of Puritan prayers--which you all need to order off of right now) and this prayer could not depict the state of my soul more beautifully nor better relay the calling that I received:

"Thou has knowledge of my soul's secret principles, and art aware of my desire to spread the gospel. Make me an almoner to give thy bounties to the indigent, comfort to the mentally ill, restoration to the sin-diseased, hope to the despairing, joy to the sorrowing, love to the prodigals. Blow away the ashes of unbelief by thy Spirit's breath and give me light, fire, and warmth of love. I need spiritual comforts that are gentle, peaceful, mild, refreshing, that will melt me into conscious lowliness before thee, that will make me feel rest in thee as my all. Fill the garden of my soul with the wind of love, that the scents of the Christian life may be wafted to others; then come and gather fruits to thy glory. So shall I fulfill the great end of my being - to glorify thee and be a blessing to men."

So here I go...continually praying those words.
As for you - just pray that someone actually picks me up from the airport on Wednesday.