bluegrass.

Kentucky


At school there is a phrase we use when one of us leaves, “boots on the field”.

This phrase means, the season of intentional learning becomes the season of intentional action. We have learned all that we set out to and now we’re ready to go help others and continue learning from them.

I started this journey August of 2015 at a place called, TurningPoint Church.

I am following a calling and not a job. The idea of this to the world is utter foolishness but I know the truth:

1 Corinthians 1:18, “For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing, but to us who are being saved it is the power of God.”

I want to tell you the story and let you decide if you would like to be a part of it.


On March 7, 2015 I found myself at a student conference in Lima, Peru at Camino De Vida.  Our team was standing off to the side taking in the scenery.  What was set in front of us were Peruvian students, worshiping the Lord with everything in them.  What happened within me is something I am still trying to understand.  There were moments in worship where I was an American, there were moments I felt Peruvian, but one truth I knew rang truest. I am a child of the Almighty God, and so was everyone else in the room. It did not matter where the world says I am a citizen. I am a citizen of heaven and so are they, Philippians 3:20.

In the moment of vulnerability that worship creates God spoke to my heart and said, “Don’t become comfortable where you are. You are about to be sent someplace new.” My stomach dropped. This made no sense. I am at a great church. I have a great job. My family is close. My friends are here. How could I leave?

I wrestled, without counsel, on this moment for a month. I was so unsure of what was taking place and I was even more upset that I found peace in letting go, instead of holding on.

One morning I prayed to Lord, “If you want me to go to another church in the United States, you are going to have to give me a supernatural love for them, because I just don’t love the idea.” It was that night, at a small group, that I met Pastor Josh Mauney and heard his vision for TurningPoint Church.

I was definitely not sold on the idea of Kentucky, I mean, who moves to Kentucky that has a missions heart? Regardless, Pastor Josh stayed after small group and let us pick his brain. I should say, this is by far one of my favorite things to do. I have this innate nature to learn from others and I saw an opportunity that night. I asked several questions relevant to what I was currently working on and helping lead. His advice was spot on. How he thought and spoke was how my brain worked. His intentionality in everything he did was remarkable. I really respected this pastor, it was probably the best small group i’d ever been to, but I did not really think anything of it.

Several weeks later we all attended the ARC Conference in Jacksonville, FL. It was there that I had the amazing opportunity to lead our schools group of interns, talk about a learning experience. In between sessions I saw Pastor Josh and decided to say hello, so he remembered me, and thank him for such a great small group. There was just something different about this pastor.

In the last session of the conference he was asked to come on stage and share his story, the same one he’d shared at our small group. It is a powerful story of the Lord’s planning, direction, and guidance in our lives. I had been so impacted by it at our small group that all I could think about when he shared it in Florida was, “That’s my pastor, that’s my pastor.”

Now, if you know me, you would know that is not a thought I would think on a normal day. That thought was so uncharacteristic but it didn’t change what was happening inside of me.

It was in that moment I knew the change God was leading me to would end with me moving to Kentucky.

Now that I had direction and vision I sought the counsel that I hadn’t for the past month.  Sometimes I believe we have to spend a sufficient time with the one who called us before we tell others where we’re called.

I believe in spiritual authority and order so I spoke with two pastors who have had tremendous impact on my life, and have also gone through transitions similar to what I may be walking through. Then I spoke with my boss. The grace and favor over these three conversations was nothing short of God’s work.

After a week I spoke with Pastor Josh, told him everything I have shared thus far, and we agreed I needed to visit. I let him know of the strong calling I felt to him, TurningPoint Church, and Lexington, Kentucky. I let him know I felt that I was following a call and not a job. So, if there wasn’t a job, I was still going to come, if that was the Lord’s will.

I had prayed for a sign to know what I should do the moment I drove into Lexington. What I experienced is not what I imagined would happen.  Tears streamed down my face and I could only think two thoughts:

  • I’m home.
  • This is the moment God has been preparing me for all of my life.

The first thought is easily understandable. Let me explain the second.

I always knew that I came to Highlands to be trained and then to leave. I never  felt that I would stay. That isn’t the purpose of our school. Again, “boots on the field.”  So, I have been waiting for the Lord to show me the pastor that I will support, the church that I will serve, and the place that will become home, for the rest of my life. I found that in Josh Mauney, TurningPoint Church, and Lexington, Kentucky.

Once I met with Pastor Josh we agreed that it was not in the cards to hire me at the present time, but that was the place I was called to be.

So the reality set in. I was leaving everything for nothing.

I was at a great church. I had a great job. My friends are here. My mom is close. My bills are non-existent, for the most part.

I would be moving to a place where I don’t have a job. I don’t have a place to live. I don’t have friends. My mom is 9 hours from me. I have student loans to pay for. My rent isn’t free, etc.

It makes no sense, but can I tell you something?

I COULD NOT BE MORE EXCITED!!!

There is something to be said for walking in faith. That is the season I am in.

2 Corinthians 5:7, “For we walk by faith, not by sight.”

Hebrews 11:1, “Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about things we cannot see

So, that brings us up to date. It is June 5th and I am attempting to sell my furniture, buy a new car, apply for jobs, and find a roommate.

I believe in the faithfulness and sovereignty of God. I cannot wait to see how he works this out for me and I hope it builds your faith in the process.  I could not be more excited for this new season that I am walking into.

I would like to ask for your help, if you feel inclined.

Prayer. Please be in prayer that obstacles are removed and that a clear path is made. Feel free to comment about the specific area you would like to pray about. That way, one day, we can look back and see how God answered your prayer, my prayer, and blessed the both of us with more than we could think to ask or imagine! What a neat way to see the Lord’s faithfulness.

If you would like to be a part of helping financially you are welcome to consider that. You can click on the link below and it will take you to the right place.

http://www.youcaring.com/maria-holder-365334

Financial help is always foundational but that is not my first priority, prayer is. Prayer creates an opportunity for the supernatural to happen in the natural, and in this situation that is what I need.

I hope that you will be a part of this story. Thank you for listening to the beginning.  More is to come and I cannot wait to see what that means.

All my love,

Maria

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s