BIG NEWS – one of our ISMers Class of 09.12 – Maria is now the Director of Marketing and Relationships at NightLight

BIG NEWS!

It’s Official!!!

You are looking at NightLight Design’s new “Director of Business and Relationships” for their North American region! … almost.

What does that mean? It means that if we raise full funding for this brand new position by July 1st, I will be responsible for directing the business strategy and managing key stakeholder partnerships for NightLight’s social enterprise, NightLight Design, throughout their North American region. We believe the creation of this position will greatly enhance the long-term sustainability of this business, and therefore increase NightLight’s ability to impact the sex trade community in Bangkok.

In March’s newsletter, I will include the complete breakdown on this new position and the business plan we have been working hard to develop! 

In April, I will let you in on the biggest lessons I’ve learned since returning from Thailand… deep stuff. 

Thank you so much for your compassionate hearts towards the women in Bangkok and for partnering with me to impact this community.

Meet Julie Gosen and Abby Zantingh coming to ISM September 2014.

“Hello everyone! I’m Julie and my adventure begins this coming September in Thailand and then on to the Philippines with Noah’s Ark! 
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I had to make some tough decisions to get here, but everything has fallen into place and I couldn’t be more excited to follow the Lord and to go wherever He wants me to go. God told me I was being held back where I am now and I didn’t understand why, until this opportunity with Impact came up. I applied and prayed and feel so at peace with this decision, and like I said, I couldn’t be more excited!
I bit of a background on me, I’m 19 years old, I took a year off to work, figure myself and to pursue my relationship with God, and boy has the past year been just that. I’ve been pushed and challenged, but through everything I’ve found that my relationship with God has gone deeper than I ever imagined and being where I am now, I could never go back. I grew up in a Christian home and always attended church until my high school years, where I felt like I was in a rut, I didn’t have many Christian friends at school and I felt stuck. Near the end of grade 12 I decided to make a change and to pursue God in any way I could, I started coming back to youth, involving myself in the church again and to go on a missions trip in the summer, and that was absolutely amazing and life changing. It was more wonderful than I could ever explain, and it was only a week! Imagine being gone for 3 months! I’m so happy with how my life has changed and I want to serve God in any way I can. I was praying alone in my room one night and I felt stuck again and then the words “long term missions work” passed through my head and I felt so overwhelmed with peace and joy, literally unexplainable, and I started crying and praised the Lord for even being part of my life. This trip could be the start to so much more.
I’m trusting God with the finances and I know I won’t have a problem. I’m ready to show his love, ready to fall in love with loving others, ready for a new chapter of my life and I’m overjoyed to know it’s happening in Thailand. I get to show others God’s love and who could ever ask for more? So come September, I’ll start my 2 month internship with Noah’s Ark, working with the kids there (which is amazing because I love kids SO much) and God knows that. Ready for new relationships, ready for challenges, ready to see more, ready to be a light in this world.”
Meet Abby Zantingh
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I am Abigail Zantingh, a servant for the Lord, excited to start His work in Thailand this September. I have done missions before in Africa, Mexico, the Dominican Republic and Guyana, but Thailand will be my longest stretch thus far. The Lord is so good and faithful with his provisions, care and leading–and I do not write that lightly. The Lord is AMAZING, truly my heart’s desire, my everything, and I am overjoyed with the honour He has given me to represent Him to Breakthrough Thailand starting this September.
     Two years ago I was at a youth retreat when I saw a booth advertising for ISM. I took their card, thinking it looked interesting, but I was only in grade 10 at the time. If I went, I would still have to wait a few years, so I pushed the thought aside. I never prayed about it. The next year, at the same convention, I was hit with seeing the ISM booth again. This time something in me stirred. I took their card again; I went to their website, watched a film; I began to pray earnestly about it. I felt the Lord beginning the first stages of being called to Thailand. I kept ISM’s card on my desk and just continued to pray as the days went by. Gradually, and I do not know when, I knew I was going to Thailand. If I ever prayed after that, God would simply endure patiently with me, for He had already told me to GO.
     I grew up in a Christian home, but my parents divorced when I was three years old. At a very young age I got into all the wrong things: movies, swearing, friends, the “parties” that only grade 3 students could have. My dad kept me going to church, but I saw God as more of a god of rules. The summer before high school I had had enough of the emptiness, so I gave my whole life to God. God took charge by utilizing the biblical basics I had developed in my childhood and then called me to an intimate relationship with Him. That was almost four years ago now. I have traveled, grown, and I am more in love with Jesus Christ than ever before! I know He has called me to some difficult things in my future, but perhaps my view of God is more adventurous and dangerous than some would like. However, God knows my heart, and He speaks to me with the love and beauty that only the Lover of My Soul can 🙂 My future is for Him, and more enticing than anythign the world could ever offer by a longshot!
     I think about Thailand often. God puts pictures in my mind of the people, the homes, and especially the children. I cannot wait to partner with life-changers and make an eternal impact for God’s kingdom in Thailand. By His grace and awesome might will I go and represent Him to the nations, until the day that every tribe and tongue shall sing together in His midst!

 

Meet Amanda Riebersal coming to ISM in Sept 2014!

imageHello my name is Amanda and my journey to Thailand begins in Sept 2014. Why Thailand?  Great question and simply put, the Lord said go. In September/October 2012, the Lord told me two years Thailand.  To be honest, I was surprised and totally shocked because Thailand was not even on my radar or even close for that matter. Plus, I knew very little about Thailand and I had no idea if the Lord wanted me togo for two years or to leave in two years. However, I slowly started to research many different options to goThailand and allowed the Lord to lead the way. Even though I looked into many possibilities, the Lord kept bringing me back to one which I finally pursued because I knew it was the door He wanted me to go through. Oh and by the way if you have not noticed I start ISM in September and begin my internship in October 2014.  This will be exactly 2 years just like the Lord said. Trust me, I did not plan it out that way it is just how it all unfolded because I was uncertain for the longest time about what He meant by 2 years Thailand. Praise Jesus for His provision, love,patience, and faithfulness.

So, here is a brief background of my life. I am from the United States and currently living in Florida. Igraduated from the University of Toledo in May 2013 with my Bachelor’s in Adolescent and Young Adult Education and my Bachelor’s in Arts with my major in History. I have a passionate for teaching but I did not start teaching right away because I felt like the Lord wanted me to pursue other options such as going to Thailand.However, the more I grown in Him I realize that my greatest passionate is seeing people encounter His love and helping them get closer to Jesus.

I grew up in a Christian home but I never realized that I could have a deep personal relationship with the Lord. I had no idea what loving God looked like or what living by faith truly meant until I went to Haiti. The pastor that we worked with completely trusted in the Lord to provide for their needs which He did daily. This pastor had so much joy and faith in the Lord and it was contagious. Also, the Lord was using this pastor in tremendous ways and I realized that I wanted to know the Father on this level. Therefore, I started to seek Him more and I realized that everything that is promised in the Bible we as believers have access to. The Lord has totally transformed the way I think and how I want to live my life because of His great love. Even though I have been to Haiti, Mexico, and Kenya, it is nothing compared to what I am about to embark upon but I am walking out in faith.

I start ISM in September and my internship with The Centre begins in October 2014 for 6 months. I know the Lord will lead the way and for that reason, because He is calling me, I am following Him to Thailand. I want to be a light wherever I am at for the Lord because I want people to encounter the love of the Lord. I desire for people to realize that they have access to Him daily and are capable of walking out in His promises and gifts that He has lavished upon us. I have a feeling that this is only the beginning of the type of life-style that He is calling me to live.

The Lord is good,

Amanda Riebersal