To All the Single Ladies…

First off, let me preface this blog with the fact that I love married life. I am sure that I have the best husband in the world and I’m so thankful that God brought us together. My life really did change for the better when I met him…and even better when I married him. 🙂

But this is for all of the single people out there- the ones that haven’t found “the one” or their “soulmate” or whatever you want to call that future spouse of yours.

I remember before I got married, people were telling me about how wonderful married life was. I was told (with good intentions) that life would start when I got married.

And honestly, even as I was about to say “I do” to the man of my dreams, these kind of statements bothered me. 

Because I cherish my single years. I look back and smile about how my time alone with God really prepared me for my life now. And I wouldn’t trade them for the world. Sure, I wanted a relationship, but as much as I love Reinier, he isn’t the most important factor in my life. God is.

To all the single ladies…and guys out there- life doesn’t start when you get married. Your life has started! God is wanting to work in you and through right now in your single years. He will use you in ways that you never dreamed possible. Your mission during this season of your life is to fall more in love with Him!

Because more important than a relationship with a person, is a relationship with your creator. The one who made you, formed you, loves you, and has a perfect plan for you. 

I was a single girl in ministry for years before Reinier came along. He was in Madagascar doing missions work for 7 years before I came into his life. Was it sometimes lonely? Sure. But were either of us ever alone? Not even close! God was preparing us in those years to become who He was desiring for us to be. And He is doing the same for you.

Trust Him with your life. Don’t wait for someone else to begin the calling that God has for YOU!

And if it is His will that a spouse comes along, it will happen at the perfect time. And that person that God has for you? He will be following after God’s plan too!

Know that I love you and I’m praying for you and this journey that you are on. Stay faithful, my friend!

Kristen 🙂

Want to know more about the work that Reinier and Kristen are doing in Madagascar? You can email them at missiontomada@gmail.com to receive their newsletter. If you would like to donate, you can go to http://www.worldoutreach.org/donations and search for Kristen. They would love to have you join the vision that God has given them for the country of Madagascar.

What Is Your Story?

“Come and hear, all you who fear God; let me tell you what he has done for me.” Psalm 66:16

Have you heard the song “My Story” by Big Daddy Weave? If you haven’t, do yourself a favor and check it out…

Go ahead…I’ll wait. 🙂

Okay, now that you have listened… there is a lyric in the song that says, “To tell you my story is to tell of Him.”

And I just can’t get over it. I guess because that’s my prayer.

That when people hear my story…or even more, see my life, they will hear and see Him.

His grace. His mercy. His goodness. His love. All of this wrapped up in my life- during the good times and the bad.

My desire is that my life daily speaks of His faithfulness and His character to those around me. Because ultimately…He is the reason for it all. I know that my peace and my joy don’t come from anything or anyone around me. He is the giver of all good things.

And that is my story.

I’m just the recipient of grace that I don’t deserve, love that I can’t understand, and hope that carries me through each and every day.

What is your story?

 

 

My Story

This is my story. This is my song. Praising my Savior all the day long.

Tonight is just one of those nights where my heart is wanting to be in Madagascar. I was looking through pictures and all I wanted to do was to be able to go love on a kid at the Wellness Center. I really do feel like I have two homes. I love both of them, but there are those moments where I feel like my heart could explode because of the love for this country on the other side of the world. God’s calling and His will are so perfect.

I realized that I have never shared the story of how I ended up in Madagascar on this blog. I thought tonight would be a great time to share it. As I recall everything that has happened, I can’t help but know that my God is faithful and His plans are way bigger than my own.

I’ll try to keep the first part short just to give you a quick run through of the things happening way before I knew that Madagascar was on my life map!

I had always said that I would love to visit Africa the summer after I graduated college. Well, my mom was sitting in a children’s ministry conference and felt like she needed to go to this one particular workshop. The class was great and she wanted to book the guy for a Kid’s Crusade at our former church. Long story short, he ends up asking her if she would want to go with his team to South Africa. And guess when it was? The summer after I graduated! So my mom, brother, and I joined the team. We established a great relationship with the children’s pastor there and my mom decided to take a team in 2012 to visit this same church. On that 2012 trip, we met Jaco and Ilke, missionaries who were about to return to Madagascar to plant a church. They invited us to join them and we accepted the offer!

A few months before my first Madagascar trip, the Lord really began to put missions on my heart. The fact that 40% of the world had never heard the gospel really began to sink into my spirit. I didn’t know what God was doing in me, but I knew that He was doing something!

I remember going for a walk one day with my mom and telling her about my heart and how I would totally be okay with finding a missionary husband. This was never in my radar before! Talk about preparation!

So we went to Mada, and I loved it. I knew leaving that I was not going home the same. (And not just because I met a really good looking South African Missionary guy either…But that’s a whole other story!)

I went home and really began to pray about what God had for me. During this time Reinier and I were getting to know each other better and I knew that there could be something there, but I was so determined to keep the two separate. I needed to know that missions was where God was calling me!

Well, I decided to go for 5 months and the rest is history. The Lord gave me such a passion and a love for these people. I had so many “there is no other place I would rather be” moments. It was such a beautiful thing.

And now here I am. Living in Texas, but preparing for marriage and for a move to my other home. It’s such an amazing testimony about how God prepared me for what was to come. Little did I know in 2010, that God was preparing the way for my life of missions and for me a husband. I couldn’t be more thankful.

Sometimes I have to go through this story in my mind just to reassure me that God will continue to guide me in every area. I have been so blessed with a church family in Texas that has supported my calling and allowed me to work while I am here, in this home! And I have a missions family waiting for me on the other side of the world. What could be better?

God is good, y’all. 🙂

-Kristen

P.S. Want to support us as we reach the people of Madagascar? Our monthly budget goal has not been reached and we would love for you to join our team!

The fastest way is to make an Online Donation via www.WorldOutreach.org/donations and select my name from the list. You can also set up automatic monthly gifts if you select the “Monthly” option. Or simply mail your gift to World Outreach Ministries, PO Box B, Marietta, GA 30061 and designate it for Kristen Evans #441.

2 Words

Lately there have been two words that have been popping up in my mind a lot. And honestly, I hadn’t put them together until I sat down at the computer to write this blog, and then suddenly… I got it.

The first word is an emotion. And lately I have been feeling it a lot when I look at our budget and what we are needing to raise money for. That word? Overwhelmed. It all just seems to be too much. We are saving for a car. We are working on a raising a monthly support budget. We are planning a wedding and a honeymoon and… the list can really go on for a while. So the first word? Definitely overwhelmed.

The second word is an action. It’s one that I believe God calls each one of us to do, sometimes in different ways. The word: obedience. This word can look different to different people, but for me, at this time of my life, it honestly looks a little scary sometimes. I’m not guaranteed a salary. I am leaving behind a life of comfort and family. The little world of Kristen Evans is about to change!

But, as I sat down to write this, I thought about something.

Our obedience should leave us overwhelmed.

Because it’s the process of being totally in over our heads while obeying the will of God that leads us to trust Him more. We will see His power at work in our lives and know that it isn’t because of us.

Let me put it in a more simple way.

Obedience + Overwhelmed = Opportunities.

Opportunities for God to show His provision.

Opportunities for God to show His love.

Opportunities for God to show His character.

What an amazing equation.

“Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us.” Ephesians 3:20

Hopefully this is an encouraging post to someone other than me. If you feel overwhelmed, keep obeying. He will come through for us!

Kristen

P.S. Want to support us as we reach the people of Madagascar? The fastest way is to make an Online Donation via www.WorldOutreach.org/donations and select my name from the list. You can also set up automatic monthly gifts if you select the “Monthly” option. Or simply mail your gift to World Outreach Ministries, PO Box B, Marietta, GA 30061 and designate it for Kristen Evans #441

The Heart of the Father

After our altar time on Sunday, I asked the kids to share their prayer requests. Most of them were the typical requests about keeping people safe and people being sick, but there was one child whose request was different…and heartbreaking. His prayer was that his dad would love him.

And while this is not your “normal” prayer request, I can almost guarantee that there are a generation of young people who are crying out for their father’s love. And adding to that, I know that there are grown men who have lived their whole life without knowing the love of an earthly father.

It’s unfortunately a heartbreaking reality.

But as I sit here, I can only think about the fact that we have a Heavenly Father. For this I am eternally grateful. He isn’t the “better” version of our earthly dad, He is the perfect version. This Father never gives up on us. He never leaves us. He never fails us. And most importantly, He never stops loving us.

And for the child who has grown up without a Father, for the grown man who has never heard the words “I love you” from his dad, and even for the person who has a great relationship with his earthly father, this is still such good news.

And while my heart still breaks for this child and for the thousands of others who are crying out for the love of a father, I can be certain that the love of Christ far surpasses anything on earth.

No matter what your relationship is with your earthly father, know that your Heavenly Father adores you.

You are loved.

You are accepted.

You are His.

The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, “Abba, Father”. Romans 8:15

From one child to another,

Kristen

The Story. :)

Hello from Madagascar! It has been a blast being back in my other home for the last week. I think it is safe to say that a lot has happened… I have preached twice, did the children’s lesson at the Wellness Center, and what was that other thing again? Oh yeah… I GOT ENGAGED! I’m so excited to be able to spend the rest of my life with this amazing guy who has taught me what it is like to truly be pursued. He loves me well. 🙂

So for all of you romantic people out there, I thought that I could tell you how it all went down. If you are friends with me on Facebook, you saw the photos, but the whole story is pretty fun!

Reinier and I had a meeting about extending my Visa at the MAF office. MAF is Mission Aviation Fellowship and they fly missionaries around to minister at different locations, but also help us with our visas, which is a major blessing. So we were having this real meeting about my visa, and Patrick, one of the pilots (and Reinier’s old neighbor) comes in and says that he is about to take the plane for a quick 5 min ride to make sure that the autopilot on the plane was working well. (Why I got on a plane that I wasn’t sure was working 100%, I do not know haha). So we finished up with the meeting and walked to the 4 person plane that was outside. I sat in the front seat and we took off. He even let me fly the plane for a minute (which I was too short to see the nose of the plane, so I had to sit on something… funny.) We flew over different villages and the scenery was beautiful!

Well, Patrick says that because it’s someone else’s plane, he is going to practice landing it since he doesn’t get much of a chance to do so anymore. We land on a dirt runway and I look to the side and see a table with a table cloth and flowers and plates sitting in an open field. (And yes, that’s when I knew!). We got out of the plane (with a big smile on my face of course) and walked to the table. Patrick was taking pictures of us and it was just a fun moment. He then pulls a book out of the bag under the table…. It is a picture book (like shutterfly) of pics from Madagascar ministry and our relationship. The last page of the book was a picture of him on one knee with the caption, “Will you marry me?” … Romantic right?

So he gets on one knee, does that whole proposal thing, and I say yes…with full confidence. 🙂 I then see someone moving in the tall grass on the other side of the plane. I say hello because I thought it was one of our friends. It was actually his brother and the friend popped up on the other side of the field…. I laughed pretty hard. But we got lots of good pictures because of them, so I won’t complain! 🙂

So yeah, that’s our story. I think that it’s a pretty good one. And I think that I got a pretty good guy. 🙂

So, what are our plans?? Well, He will come to the States in December, we will get married in January, and then head to South Africa for a second, smaller ceremony. After the honeymoon, we will head back to Madagascar to begin this crazy missions life together. I couldn’t be more excited. He has been on the field for 8 years already and I have full confidence in what he is doing. He leads the Bible School, is one of the Pastors at the church, leads the Wellness Center (feeding project), and so much more. It will be an exciting ride to walk alongside him as his wife!

As we prepare for marriage during this season, will you pray for us?

-Pray for a fresh anointing on both of our ministries

-Pray for unity in our relationship

-Pray for finances as we work on buying a car, paying for visa costs, and raising monthly support .

-Pray for lives in the States, South Africa, and Madagascar to be touched through our lives and relationship.

Thanks so much for your investment into our lives and for reading about our story! There is so much more to tell, but that will be for another day. Love you guys!

Kristen (soon to be) Vorster. 🙂

P.S. Want to support us as we reach the people of Madagascar? The fastest way is to make an Online Donation via www.WorldOutreach.org/donations and select my name from the list. You can also set up automatic monthly gifts if you select the “Monthly” option. Or simply mail your gift to World Outreach Ministries, PO Box B, Marietta, GA 30061 and designate it for Kristen Evans #441

DSC_0686

Life According to Disney

Let it go, Let it gooooooo!

Okay, now that the song is in your head, we can begin. 😉

I have been wanting to write a blog lately, but never had any inspiration. I’m one of those people who loves to write, but if nothing comes to me, the website just gets shut down until something pops up in my head…usually when I’m no where near a computer. And that’s what happened yesterday. And so, I present to you…Life According to Disney. 🙂

I began to think about how God wants all of us. He wants us to look at our life and let it go!

I think about the way that I always imagined my life. I would graduate college, get married a year after that, have a child a year after that, be a children’s pastor (in the States, of course), and enjoy the “white picket fence” life. It was going to be great.

But then as I look back, I realize that God has something greater for me. That the ideas I have had in my life…I needed to let go.

And maybe that’s you too.

Maybe you have these expectations of the way life “should” be.

Maybe you have in your head what you will do and where you will live.

Maybe you have your life planned out to the year and to the month and to the day.

Maybe you have that perfect spouse imagined in your head. (Tall, dark, and handsome…of course!)

But…maybe God has something different for you. What if He is leading you to let go of everything you have in store for your life and live the life that He has for you? What if He is calling you to let it go?

Your timeline? let it go.

Your comfort zone? let it go.

Your plans? let it go.

Your finances? let it go.

That relationship? let it go.

And let God do His thing. Because as you release your life into His hands, I can promise you…His way is better.

I wouldn’t have imagined being so excited to move across the world with no air condition, no promise of a flushing toilet in places, and definitely no Casa Ole, but somehow…in the midst of God’s perfect plan, I know that I am right where I want and need to be.

Because in the midst of letting it go, you find that He gives us even more in return.

So let that be an encouragement for you today. My prayer is that we can let go of everything that we hold so dear and embrace the life that He has for us!

-Kristen

P.S. Would you like to support me in this life that God is leading me in? If you would like to help in this mission to Madagascar, it’s easy and tax deductible. The fastest way is to make an Online Donation via www.WorldOutreach.org/donations and select my name from the list. You can also set up automatic monthly gifts if you select the “Monthly” option. Or simply mail your gift to World Outreach Ministries, PO Box B, Marietta, GA 30061 and designate it for Kristen Evans #441

A Quick Update :)

Ephesians 3:20 “Now to Him who is able to immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us.”
I love the fact that God loves to blow our minds! When we put our requests before Him, He is not only able to meet those needs, He is able to do more than what we could ever imagine with them! And even better than that, during this time, he is working in us to do what He wants to accomplish. The outer needs and inner needs are being met. What an amazing God!

As I make this move to the other side of the world, I am trusting Him for the “immeasurably more” in my life and in the lives of those in Madagascar. I truly believe that God is able to do more than I could possibly comprehend in every aspect. My desire for a greater anointing and fresh creativity in portraying the good news of Christ will be fully because of Him and for Him. 🙂

With that being said, I am so excited to announce that I will be working with World Outreach Ministries. You can check out their site www.worldoutreach.org for more info, but basically they are a home office to take care of things in the States while I am away. I have the freedom to minister there, while not worrying about things here. It is a great fit for me! They will handle finances and make sure that any donations given through them to me are put into my bank account. Also, any donations given are tax-deductible, so it’s a great thing for those giving as well. If you would like to join my support team, there will be more info at the end of the email. I don’t want this email to be all about $, but I do believe that working together for His kingdom is such a great thing and that giving makes you a vital part in reaching Madagascar for Christ. (Okay, missions plug over…for now!)

I will be doing a lot of what I did on the previous trip. Between volunteering at an English School, teaching English Club, doing the children’s ministry at the Wellness Center, speaking at Malagasy churches, and leading the children’s ministry at our church, I stayed very busy. But it’s the best kind of busy!

Thank you so much for your prayers and support during this transition. I have been so blessed with a great family, wonderful church family, and the best of friends to keep me going! If you would ever like to meet so that you can hear more about my heart for Madagascar, I would love to sit (over some Mexican food course!) and share about what I feel God is leading me to do. It’s an exciting time!

As mentioned above, you can donate online through www.WorldOutreach.org/donations . You can search for my name and there are options to have automatic monthly deductions. This helps you not to forget! If you can’t do monthly, there are also one time giving options available. Also, if giving online isn’t your thing, you can mail in your gift to World Outreach Ministries, PO Box B, Marietta, GA 30061 and designate it for Kristen Evans #441.  They can also process donations of stocks as well.

Thanks again for your support! Your prayers mean more to me than you know. Let’s trust God for the “immeasurably more” in all of our lives!

Kristen Evans

Two Straws and a Pair of Pants

I have had this blog on my heart for a few days now and I’m finally getting a chance to write it! Thanks for reading!

Often times on Sunday mornings, I will step outside of our church building and just watch the people that pass by. Most of them are dressed in their Sunday best headed to church. It’s a really neat sight to see. But this Sunday, a kid caught my eye.

He was about 4 year old. His pants were too small for him, so you saw half of his bare bottom and he had two straws. He was walking down the street by himself, tossing the straws up and catching them.

And the part that stuck out to me? He was perfectly content.

Content with his pants that were a few sizes too small. Content with his two straws.

And my prayer at that moment was that I could be like that kid.

Content.

Living in Madagascar, it is normal to see kids even as young as 3 begging on the streets by themselves. I have seen so many people digging through big heaps of trash to find something that they could sell or eat. It brings the saying, “One man’s trash is another man’s treasure” to reality. There is one lady that I have seen multiple times who sits her chair on a mound of trash. Another man can’t walk and I see him quite frequently scooting himself down the road for long distances because he has no wheelchair and getting on a bus in his condition by himself is next to impossible.

And then I see my life. I have a nice bed to sleep on. I have food every day. I can walk down the street whenever I would like.

Yet, I still find things to complain about.

(insert conviction here.)

Paul says it best in Philippians chapter 4: I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

So today, my prayer and encouragement for all of us is that we can be content.

Just like Paul.

And just like the kid with 2 straws.

We’re The Same

Hello from Madagascar! I love getting the chance to sit down and write and just talk about what the Lord has been showing me through my times here. My prayer is that you don’t only hear my heart in these posts, but more importantly, you hear His. Thanks for your prayers and support!

People are constantly telling me how proud they are of me for going across the world and ministering. I get people telling me how awesome I am and complimenting me on what I’m doing here. And honestly, I get it. I have told people that I’m proud of them and have looked up to people in ministry all my life.

But can I just be honest for a second?

I really don’t think that I’m anything special.

I guess because the only reason that I’m here is because I chose to be obedient to what God had for me. I didn’t put on a super-Christian cape when I got on the plane. I am still just Kristen…a normal girl who chooses to obey a really big God.

My obedience just happens to be in a different geographical location than most. And that makes me no more special than you.

Yes, you.

You- the person who straightens up the chairs after your church service. We’re the same.

You- the Pastor who comes home tired after a long day of ministering to people. We’re the same.

You- the lady telling people about Jesus at your 9-5 job. We’re the same.

You- the student who is standing up for truth in the classroom. We’re the same.

And the list could go on and on of people who are choosing to be obedient to the call of Christ. It’s not about location. It’s all about obedience.

And that’s the beauty of it all.

We can be on opposite sides of the world, working for the same Kingdom.

So I want to encourage you today to be obedient in the place that God has you.

If you are a Pastor, lead well.

If you are a parent, love well.

If you are an employee, serve well.

If you are a student, learn well.

And as we stay obedient, we can lead others to the love of Christ… together. And that’s a beautiful thing!

-Kristen