Joyska's Journal: January 2006

Monday, January 30, 2006

Who is your life!

One of my favourite verses for a long time has been Colossians 3:4 which says:
"When Christ WHO IS OUR LIFE (emphasis mine) appears, then you also will appear with Him in glory."

How happy I was as I was reading through Deuteronomy to find this: Deuteronomy 30:20
"That you may love the LORD your God, thay you may obey His voice, and that you may cling to Him, for HE IS YOUR LIFE and the length of your days..."

Just good to gain perspective again, on what my life is and who it belongs to.
Joyska at 12:17 AM

Friday, January 27, 2006

protection vs destruction

I had the most interesting conversation with an American today. I don't usually allow myself to get into black and white good vs bad conversations, but this was one that gave me an interesting perspective.

We were talking about "conspiracy theories", chemtrails, and corruption (the three c's... whole other post to explain). Anyway, this American began explaining why American's are so adamant about being allowed to carry guns. She explained that in many American's minds, things like the militia (i.e. the Michigan militia) exist to help protect citizens if the government is unable to, or to protect the citizens if the government becomes corrupt... therefore taking away the right to have guns is making them vulnerable to government corruption and taking away their ability to protect themselves.

Interesting. My view on guns has always been that they are destructive. Every situation I can think of makes guns destructive, not protective. Is that my Canadian upbringing? Do I live under the belief that in general, I am safe?
Joyska at 6:35 PM

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

wisdom of Deuteronomy

I'm back in the beginning of the Old Testament again. Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers... and now Deuteronomy. I think I need to find out what that word actually means... Genesis means beginning or origin, Exodus is the leaving of Egypt, the great Exodus of a nation from another, Leviticus is the law for the priestly nation, Numbers, is just that, the census of the people and the events around their time in the wilderness, but what does Deuteronomy mean? I'll let you know when I find out... or if you know, let me know!

That however is not the point of this post.

Deuteronomy 4:39 says this: Therefore know this day, and consider it in your heart, that the LORD Himself is God in heaven above and on the earth beneath; there is no other."

That statement comes in a running commentary by Moses on what has transpired over the 40 years in the wilderness. Having just finished reading all of those events, it was a great refresher. But then I started thinking of what living through all of these events must have been like. This was a nation that through many miracles, signs and wonders were delivered from slavery and brought through the Red Sea on dyr land, had the cloud by day and the fire by night to lead them ALL 40 YEARS, and again and again complained and challenged the Lord. (Read Numbers 16 for a dramatic example... remember the story where the earth swallows up a bunch of people? read what comes after it!!).

KNOW this day, CONSIDER it in your heart. THERE IS NO OTHER. I believe that God is again making His supremecy known on the earth. I've blogged before about "SO THAT THEY MAY KNOW THAT I AM THE LORD" but I am more and more convinced that the LORD is on the move in unprecedented ways. And we haven't seen anything yet.

Yesterday at Hope City, Goldie came in, not 100% sober, but animated. At one point she said "He's comin, y'all, he's freaken comin!" Though it made me laugh, I can't help but think that He is revealing himself to her in a new way. It just brings me back to thinking... know this day, and consider in your heart... there is no other.

I want to be found as one deciding each day that He is who He says He is, and found considering in my heart what that means and declaring that there is no other... in today's whirlwind of choices and events... that is the wisdom of the hour.
Joyska at 1:15 PM

Saturday, January 21, 2006

we won't shoot

tonight I saw a movie that restored my faith in the movie industry. They can make good movies. I saw "At the End of the Spear" and I was inspired again.

There was one line in the movie (many actually) but one that I keep thinking of. When the child asks the dad if he will defend himself, (that is all I want to say so that I don't wreck it for you) the father's response is

"NO, we won't shoot, because we know we are going to heaven... they aren't".

That puts a new spin on an old debate. The need or desire to defend ourselves... kill or be killed... is everywhere. On TV, in the news, in most movies, and to a lesser degree in all of our day to day lives. I'll put them down before they put me down, i'll make my point loudest so that I can look like I am right, and who cares about the other guy and many more crazy ways of defending ourselves and making ourselves secure.

But the amazing thing about this film, which is the story of 5 missionaries who gave their lives for the native people of Ecaudor... is that they were more secure and confident about who they were and what their standing was with God, let alone everyone else in their lives. They got it. They understood. They knew that they already had eternity secure and garaunteed. They also understood that the natives didn't. And for all intent and purposes, they WOULD NOT shoot them when they attacked because they knew the natives eternal destiny was hell.

That very fact... that they didn't shoot, was one of the catalysts that changed the heart of one of the natives. It's a fantastic story that I highly recommend. It's a little intense and brutal at times, but the story is true and inspiring.

As we were walking out Lisa turns to me and says... "so you ready to lay down your life?" to which I now know that I should have responded "I won't shoot".
Joyska at 9:32 PM

Friday, January 20, 2006


okay... all you lurkers out there... i want to read your comments... You've got something to say i know you do!!!
Joyska at 9:33 AM

Tuesday, January 17, 2006

Goldie does it again!!

Well it is Tuesday and that means Hope City!!!

Last night when the crew went downtown to feed the poor, one of the guys invited an older woman in who was walking by. It was taco night and there was LOTS of food left when she came in. With a heaping plate of food and a nice warm spot to hang out and eat, Marsha started to cry. ON further investigation, she shared that she was on her way to go get booze and when she was invited in, the feeling "lifted off or her"... she didn't want the alcohol anymore!! She, after talking with some of them gave her heart to the Lord!!!

SO then today, we are praying and Marsha shows up!!! She hangs out with us as we pray, and then Manny, one of the guys from IHOP, begins to prophesy over her. He calls out destiny over her life and invites her to say YES to walking out the commitment she made last night.

After we went on and finished the prayer meeting, Marsha asked if she could say something. She went on to say that she wanted to say yes, but she knew she was going to fail again and again.

Before anyone could reply, Goldie (i LOVE this woman!) begins to share how she fails again and again, and how God keeps taking her back... that is NOT about being perfect it's about saying yes! Goldie is a recovering crack ADDICT! She is also a follower of God, and she prayed for Marsha! This is what I have praying to see for a long time.

Later Goldie shared her first prophetic vision. She saw a huge white house that was always full where prayer and music was always happening and how anyone from the street could come in and find God! It was the prayer room in the city! I couldn't believe it! And yet... yes, I could.

Of course we will continue to walk with these women. The Lord is doing such fun things and it is fun to be a part of it!
Joyska at 6:19 PM

Sunday, January 15, 2006

Yeah Ty!

I just watched two hours of ABC's Extreme Home Make Over and all I can say is YEAH TY! There was an 11 year old girl that tried really hard to get a hold of the show and eventually through many tries and other strategies managed to get their attention. The problem was that the whole house was taken over by black mold... it was terrible.

Anyway, I was overwhelmed by the beauty of this story. If you saw it, I'm sure you enjoyed it. I think I like this show because there is always a redemptive quality to it... they are always pulling together to get the job done... against the odds, for the good of the family, as a community etc. I just have been watching so much of the "other news" that leaves me sad or angry, that to watch a show that actually makes you want to cheer is a cool thing!

So of course they got a NEW HUGE house and it was beautiful, full of all the fun extras the show is known for.

Here is the cool part. Even the wonder of this story is NOTHING compared to the plans of redemption the Lord has for us. The world (if you can allow me to stretch the analogy) is slowly being taken over by the "mold" ... the toxic and fatal.... but HIS plan is complete restoration... we have NO idea! But personally, I want to be found like this little 11 year old girl (Jael Faith) and tenatiously going after the one who can change it all!

so Yeah TY, for the show (Ty Pennington?) but more importantly... YEAH GOD!!!!
Joyska at 6:09 PM

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Happy Birthday Mom!

Today is my mom's birthday.

She was born in the Netherlands and moved to Canada some time in the 60's and married my dad in 1966.

My mom is an amazing lady who has raised 4 kids who now live in Ontario, Michigan, and Missouri... (ah.. that would be me).

My favourite memory of my mom would have to be the trip to Holland a couple years ago for her mom's (my grandmother's) 100th birthday. We just had time to hang out with dad's family and her family and I got to see where they both came from. I love listening to mom speaking in Dutch, laughing and just being relaxed.

Happy Birthday MOM!!!! I hope it is a really good day!!!
Joyska at 8:59 PM

Friday, January 13, 2006

Hope City and the importance of Vision

i hung out with some of the women from Hope City yesterday. We went out to the country to pray at one of the women's homes. As we driving out there (literally a 1/2 hour out of the city) the houses got increasingly bigger... increasingly more land, and increasingly fancier... in the country farm land... amazing.

I honestly and often call myself a Poverty SNOB...meaning that I look at these huge houses and expensive homes and think... do you KNOW how many children we could feed and house with the money used to build that house!!!!????!!!! Anyway, I made some comment about that, and Lisa warned me that the house we were going to was even more than what we had seen... but she said when you see the house remember there is a vision behind it.

OH MY GOODNESS! This house is HUGE!!!! BEAUTIFUL!!!! GORGEOUS!!!! and every other possible positive adjective. And then they told me the long term vision for Hope City. This house was built with the vision of housing women from the city that need a new start. Abused women, prostitutes, single moms, drug addicts needing a place far from the city... it is perfect! The house has 6 bedrooms upstairs, as well as a computer room, and get this A GORGEOUS PRAYROOM that looks over the 90 acre farm. The whole place is decorated in country/early americana and has 4 fireplaces, a library and 3 rooms designed for counseling or small groups. The kitchen is MASSIVE, the living room is two stories high with the fireplace taking up 2/3rds of the wall, and the have an old sled for a coffee table!!! (I laughed at that) The basement is half finished but houses currently an office and a small computer business that this family runs. The plan is more bedrooms, a kitchen and a bathrooom to be added to the house.

SO WHY didn't I know this before? Lisa wanted me to see it... not hear it. UNBELIEVABLE. The best part of it? It is only one aspect of the vision for Hope City!!!! Have I said that I am loving this or what? Time will tell when and what it will all look like, but this is phenomenal.

Do I sound excited?
Joyska at 7:28 AM

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

O Canada

Today I went back to the city. I love the Hope City crowd... both the ones I go down to the city with and the ones that we connect with in the city.

First a prayer request. Goldie, who I have written about in other blog entries, was there today with her grandson Keiffer, who they lovingly call Key. Key is very sick. He is around 7 months with a terrible bronchial infection, and needs daily treatments to help him breath. Please pray for him, and for Goldie as she is really struggling with the number of people in her life that she loves who are very sick and or on the street, dealing with drugs etc. Her questions of why God would allow it spurred a great conversation on the fact that God is GOD... that he is in control and it is our response, our choice to trust inspite of circumstances that draw us closer to his heart and (in Goldie's words) "makes the tough tougher". She is a strong 50 year old woman who has weathered many heart aches and continues to find peace in her God. As she says, "I know God is GOD, I just don't always see the whole picture and think I could do it better." Don't we all!

Then we go out to lunch. We are sitting around a table in the midst of a great restaurant called Winstead's (that have AMAZING steak burgers!!!) discussing current events and the "end of the world as we know it". As I sat and listened to 6 fiesty women share their opinions about Bush, about the war, and about the world in general, I thought I would throw in my two cents as a Canadian... after all Canadians are their friends to the North... right?

Well, when I said "as a Canadian", one of the women (from Kentucky... so add the southern accent for full affect) said... we Love oak leaves...

I stopped and laughed, said... "you mean MAPLE leaves?" to which she relplied... oak, maple, what's the difference?

AH Americans... you gotta love em! (at least when you live amongst them!)
Joyska at 4:45 PM

Sunday, January 08, 2006

the house of sick

my house is sick... I'm sick(cough, due to cold)... my room mate is fighting a possible pneumonia, and my other room mate is hanging out at home... not feeling great. So... the house of sick... cough. sneeze. cough, cough, cough, weeze.

Put on another movie... make more tea... throw on another blanket... and pray.

Good health to all of you.
Joyska at 5:52 PM

Friday, January 06, 2006

nothing to say

I wish I could have something profound to say that would amaze you all... but instead I will tell you my room mate's shoe size... 13. (please keep in mind she is a 6'2 female WITH ENOUGH SHOES TO RESTOCK PAYLESS!!!!!)
Joyska at 9:46 AM

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

One Thing

10,000 people... 250 children... 7 sessions... 4 days... and one tired Joyska!

The highlight of the conference for me was the kids dance. They danced to two of Misty's songs that had the phrases "I don't want to be offended when it's all coming down" and "i pledge my allegiance to Jesus, to Jesus" and "I want to be for you, not against you, I want to be with you where you are!" It was awesome to see the kids proclaim these truths as they dance and sang. Very powerful. And very annointed. 250 children learned the dance... about 200 actually performed it... complete with Faith doing the dance moves up on stage... in her wheel chair!

Then there is Adam's story. His father came to me during one of the practices to tell me about his son. A year ago, this ten year old boy could not walk, speak, and was in diapers. He was born with a disease that the doctors couldn't diagnose, but told his parents he would die by the time he was three. At that time they told him ...maybe 5. Then God healed him ... completely. At age 6 he contracted Meningitus (spelling?) and it almost killed him... God healed him AGAIN. Then at age 9 his brain shut down. He couldn't do anything at all by himself. The Psychologist sent him to the Neurologist, and the NEurologist said it was Psychological... neither knew what to do, and both medicated him highly. This was December of 2004. After seeking some advice from a hospital in Cleveland, his parents took him off of all drugs and God began to heal him again.

Saturday morning, along with Jonathon Maas and in front of the entire conference, Adam, (not his real name) LED the dance on the stage. THAT was my highlight!

Today I went downtown again. I LOVE the way the guys are at the door waiting for us and are welcoming and warm as we come in. Slim couldn't stay today, but we gave him a copy of the Song of Solomon condensed version... cuz, when he was at the conference !!!! he saw an ad for it and wanted to know more. It is so exciting to see the hunger in him and in Goldie. Shawn and Jeremiah too.

Tomorrow Art Katz is speaking at IHOP. Things never slow down around here!

Happy New Year to all! I hope your new year is going well already!
Joyska at 6:36 PM