Recognize and Retaliate.

“Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. Resist him, firm in your faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being experienced by your brotherhood throughout the world”.  1 Peter 5:8-9 ESV

Friends, we have a real enemy who is consistently seeking to devour us.

What does this mean? What does this look like in everyday life? Can Satan truly destroy us if we are children of God?

Well, for believers the answer is no. He cannot pluck us out of the hand of God (John 10:28-29). He cannot undo our salvation or separate us from God’s love (Romans 8:38-39).

He cannot destroy our souls (Matthew 10: 28). But, he can devour our confidence, faith, relationships, righteousness, emotions, health, and thoughts while we are on earth.

There are two key things we must remember when we are being devoured:

  1. We must recognize the enemy’s lies and the people, situations, and excuses he hides behind.
  2. We must retaliate against those lies with the truth of God.

“Be sober-minded; be watchful…”

To recognize means to be watchful and see the various ways that the enemy is attacking our lives. These attacks are not always easy to identify at first because he “disguises himself as an angel of light” (2 Corinthians 11:14).

This means that he camouflages himself with the different situations and people in our lives when actually he is the one who is attacking us. We may forget he is there or we may forget that he is actually the bad guy.

That fight with your spouse, the traffic jam when you are already running late, the thoughts you have about not being quite enough, the dreadful diagnosis you just received, the loss of a loved one, etc.

He uses these things to devour us and to injure our faith and hope in the Lord.

Resist him, firm in your faith…”

After we recognize that these things are not coincidence, we then should retaliate against Satan’s attacks. Just like Jesus reciprocated with the truth found in God’s Word when the devil was tempting Him in the wilderness, we must also take up the “sword of the Spirit” (Ephesians 6:17) in the midst of battle.

This means that we have to be engaged and rooted in the Word of God in order to be able to use it when the enemy is prowling around in our lives.

We can’t just graze over Scripture because “it’s the right thing to do” or only open our Bibles while sitting on the Sunday morning pew. I’m telling you, as someone who used to do both of these things… it won’t work!

We must cling to the word of God desperately, whether we are in a desperate season of life or not.

I’m speaking to myself as well when I say that we have to realize that we need to cling to Jesus in all of life’s ups and downs.

That means we have to absorb His Word and have conversation with Him not out of habit, but out of the realization that we desperately and consistently need Him.

Start today anew. Recognize the different areas of your life where the enemy is trying to attack you, and then retaliate by leaning fully into the Father and His Truth.

Gals, stay watchful. Stay firm in your faith. Your enemy does not rest… but thankfully, neither does your God!

Father, I am so thankful that You have equipped us with Your own words and precious Holy Spirit so we might retaliate against the enemy’s attacks. We never have to fear that we will be destroyed by the devil, because You came down to earth and conquered him once and for all. His clock is ticking and he is seeking to wreak as much havoc as he can before it is finished, but YOU ARE IN FULL CONTROL. Lord, keep us strong. Help us to constantly and consistently be seeking You. Help us to ground ourselves so deeply in Your truth that we are able to immediately recognize the enemy’s lies. My Father, I pray for each woman reading this devotion right now, that You would make Yourself known to her in a new and mighty way today and be her strength. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

© 2018 by Casey Durham. All rights reserved.


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I don’t know if it’s still a thing, but I vividly remember people being obsessed with finding out the meaning of their names back in like the late 90s, early 00s. I was around age 7-9 when I somehow found out that my first name means brave. Ever since then I have had a special connection with that word.

Not that I feel I am brave AT ALL. Matter of fact, I think that’s something I’ve especially struggled with my whole life…being brave and courageous when I’m so fearful and worried. I know I’m not alone in this struggle, but for some reason the idea of being brave has always been important to me, yet I have failed repeatedly.

Right now I’m in a season of life where I need to be brave.

Let me be clear, nothing ‘major’ is going on. Things could always be a lot worse and I am beyond grateful for my good health and God’s provision in so many areas of my life, but, we all have different battles.

Right now I am at a crossroad. I am being faced with the uncertainty of the future and have some decisions to make. Sometimes I feel like I am drowning in fear. I am anything but brave.

I was driving home the other day when one of my favorite worship songs came on the radio: “You Make Me Brave” by Bethel Music. As I was singing this song to the top of my lungs, it just sort of dawned on me (y’all, this is not profound) that I will never be brave in and of myself. Just like the song says, He makes me brave. He is why I can be courageous in the midst of uncertainty.

For a great portion of my life, I strived to be what my name suggested.  Unfortunately, I was relying on my own abilities and strength to be this way. Instead, I have learned that the ONLY way I can be brave when I’m afraid or uncertain or anxious is to rely on my Father who makes me brave.

Are the uncertainties still there? Absolutely. Do I know what is coming around the corner? Nope. Am I still scared? Honestly, yes. The Bible does not say we will never experience fear, it just tells us we have no reason to hold onto it because of who our God is.

So, I am going to be more intentional in this and I want y’all to keep me accountable. When I am afraid, I will put my trust in God. I will run to the One who makes me brave.

“Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”-Deuteronomy 31:6

When I am afraid, I put my trust in you.” -Psalm 56:3 

Listen to this song: You Make Me Brave – Bethel Music 

celebration > comparison.

As you can see, I have not written for a while.
Partly because I have never wanted this to become like a deadline thing. I never wanted to have to “come up” with something in order to have content on this blog. That’s not what it’s for. This blog is to capture what God is teaching me and what He wants me to say. Whether no one reads it or 1,000,000 people read it… that’s the purpose. I write when He lays it upon my heart.

Secondly, with my workload in school and the other demands of life, it’s almost impossible to find time to sit and write.

So there is my quick blurb as to why I have been M.I.A.

Now, I wanted to share with you something that God has really been pressing on my heart lately. Y’all have probably heard this before and may have this area completely figured out, but I surely don’t. It has taken me YEARS to even hear the obvious message of what God has been trying to say.

It took recent life instances, an encouraging friend, a specific devotional, and many passages of Scripture before the lightbulb finally dinged over my head.

Here is what I’ve learned lately:
Comparing yourself to others does absolutely nothing but harm.

As a 23 year old without a career, still in grad school, not married, living back at home…. this. hits. home.

It’s hard for me not to look at people I went to high school or college with who seem to have it all figured out without a hint of jealousy or bitterness. Picture a bratty little girl throwing a tantrum when she isn’t getting her way. That’s how I’ve been lately.  “Ugh why am I stuck here God? It isn’t fair…. I want this and I want that”.

I’ll be candidly honest, it had gotten so bad that I would look at others’ successes with absolute resentment.

Then one day my dear friend told me about a devotional on the Bible app called The Comparison Trap. As I worked though the five days of this devo, I noticed how much of a struggle this area is for me.

One of the things that hit me like a ton of bricks was: instead of comparing yourself to others, you should celebrate others.

It seems so obvious right? But I truly believe this truth has changed my life. I’m sure I will still struggle with wanting what others have or wanting to be further in life than I am right now, but I will do my best to make a conscious effort to CELEBRATE others’ successes instead of acting as though their victories are my losses.

Did someone just get the kind of puppy you’ve always wanted? Celebrate that for them. Your best friend has lost 10 pounds when you can’t even lose one? Celebrate that for them. Someone just got engaged on your timeline and you are struggling in a season of singleness? Celebrate that for them. A couple in your church just found out they’re having twins and you are struggling to get pregnant? Celebrate that for them.

The list goes on and on. Build others up and celebrate when God blesses them. There is no need to harbor bitterness when you feel your life does not compare to others. Focus on YOUR blessings and what God has done for you, and celebrate what He is doing for your friends and loved ones.

Letting their successes bring you jealously and bitterness will do nothing but destroy you. Share in their joy, seek the Lord always, and know that His timing is always perfect.

1 Thessalonians 5:11 says, “Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.” 

Practical application: Instead of dwelling on what you DON’T have, try sitting down and making a list of what God HAS blessed you with recently. I bet the list will be longer than you think!



Around New Years, when everyone is making resolutions, some people ask God to give them a word for that year. I’ve heard of several people doing this before. The word could be something like “patience” or “selflessness” or “faith”.  Your word is something to focus on throughout the year. An area that God will work on in your life.

Recently, a friend of mine shared her word with me: intentional. (How brilliant right?!) This could mean several different things, but I think it ultimately means to be purposeful…in your walk with God, in serving others, in your ministry that He has given you, in your relationships, in your time etc. To live and love intentionally.

I was laying in bed the same night that she told me this with a ton on my mind. I’m kinda in a weird season of life where I feel like I’m just waiting for a lot of stuff to happen. I catch little glimpses of what I believe God wants me to do, but just don’t have the resources to do them yet. I’m in school, back at home, unmarried, not yet in my career, and not really in ministry as much as I would like to be. I feel like I’m crouched down at the starting line just waiting for someone to shoot the gun. I’m ready to run.

As I was laying in bed, I began to ponder what my word would be and what I needed to focus on for this upcoming year.

It didn’t take me long to hear the word in my mind: Rest.

What a strange word.

I must admit, this word revelation did not completely take me by surprise.

Have you ever heard God speak to you about something in about a million different ways? (Or maybe that’s just me, because I’m too stubborn or clueless to get it the first time). That’s how the concept of ‘rest’ has been for me lately.

My personality type does NOT rest. My mother may disagree because she sees my lazy side, but even when I’m lying on the couch binge watching Netflix, my mind is running at full speed. I’m constantly planning, pondering, or checking things off my list. There is no ‘off’ button for me, especially in this preparation season of life.

God has been placing rest on my heart for several weeks now. One thing I have realized is not only how much I don’t do it, but also how much I don’t even know how to do it.

In Matthew 11:28, Jesus says “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest”. 

I have always loved this verse when I was anxious or overwhelmed with stress, but now when I really focus on my word… rest… it becomes so much more. It is the key.

What exactly does this mean? How do we rest when life demands so much of us?

I’ll be honest, I still don’t have a solid answer for this, which is why I think this next year will have a lot of lessons in store for me. I do know that true rest starts with Jesus alone, and that is where I will begin.

So, 2017… I don’t know what you have in store. I will still be in school. I will still be working. I will still be trying to take on entirely too much without ever saying “no”. I will still be busy, and at times feel overwhelmed. But I will also be determined to learn how to rest in the Lord and put it into practice. I believe that is what God is gonna show me this year and what I am going to work on with His help.

So, stay tuned friends. I can’t wait to take on this new year with Him.

Lord, thank You for all that You have done in this past year of my life. I believe my word for 2016 was ‘wait’. There were many things I had to wait for in 2016. Even though I still feel like I’m in a period of waiting, I have seen You work in huge and mighty ways. I’m SO thankful, God. You have moved mountains. I pray that as this new year approaches, You will lead and guide me in all areas of my life. I pray that above all, You teach me how to rest. How to rest in who You are, in who I am because of You, in the plans You have for me, and in this current season of my life. To rest fully assured that You are in control. I love you, Dad. Please continue to reveal Yourself to me every single day.

What will your word be for 2017? Ask God to reveal it to you!

Giving Thanks.


Taking a moment on this Thanksgiving morning to write a brief ‘thankful’ blog post.

Why? Because I need a minute… I need to stop in the midst of the “busy” and be thankful.

I tend to complain a lot, especially in this season of my life. I am taking on about 10 different things at a time and I constantly feel like I’m about to drown. My people that deal with me on a daily basis hear me complain and whine way more than I would like to admit (thank God for their constant love/patience).

This Thanksgiving is a little different in several ways. This year, my life isn’t pausing for the holiday. As a grad school student, life rarely pauses at all anymore. (I mean, this morning, I got up early to do…homework. What in the world!!) So I wanted to take a minute to purposefully pause and give thanks to the Lord for (A FEW of) the amazing things I have going on in my life right now, even if they feel like spinning plates sometimes.

First, I have been meditating all week on how AMAZING the Lord is. I am so thankful that He has been with me every single step of the way my whole entire life. We hear this concept all the time, but to sit and just really think about how He has been with you through it ALL will take your breath away. He has loved me when I was unlovable, He has had patience with me when I purposefully walked away from Him time and time again, and He has held me in moments where I could not walk. Oh, what a Savior! I could go on and on about the wondrous ways He has, is, and will work in my life, but I will just say that I am so thankful for this personal, intimate God we serve. Y’all, I truly could not do life without Him.

Second: family. Both blood and ‘made’. I have learned that family isn’t always just the people you are actually related to. I have been so so blessed to have such an amazing, huge family. Even through the rough times, I know that they will always be there for me and support me.

Third: my boyfriend. I could go on and on about how God’s grace has been made evident through every single step of our relationship, but for lack of time I will refrain (for now).  I am so thankful for Mason and who he is. I am also so thankful that God said “no” to a lot of my prayers in the past… I get it now Lord, and I will be forever grateful.

Fourth: my friends. I cannot even begin to explain how thankful I am for all of the friends I have in my life. They have seen the worst of me, yet they love me anyway. There is something so special about God placing people in your life at the very moment you need them.

Fifth: my church family. I have learned the importance of this especially within the last year. As a believer, it is necessary to have a support group of other believers who are there whenever you need them. People who pray it out with/for you, listen to you, and are the hands and feet of Christ. I definitely have that and I am so thankful for each of these individuals.

Sixth, and my last one for today: opportunity. I have so many amazing opportunities in my life right now. These are often the things I complain about the most, but I am so thankful for the chance to have them. I have school, two jobs, a side bit of photography, and two ministry opportunities that I am a part of. The opportunity to further my education is such a blessing even though it is very difficult. I am so thankful that God provided these areas within my life and that this season teaches me to lean on Him even more than before.

So, this Thanksgiving, even though I will be constantly thinking about the assignments I have to do, the photos I need to edit, the work I need to get done etc., I am determined to continuously realign my focus on God, from whom all blessings flow. I am determined to look at the people/circumstances around me with a heart full of gratitude. God is so so so good to me, and I have done absolutely nothing to deserve it.

I will leave you with this verse because today, it is applicable in more than one way. 😉

“Oh, taste and see that the LORD is good! Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him!”

-Psalm 34:8 ESV

Happy Thanksgiving Y’all!!

South Africa: Week 2

Sunday – July 24, 2016


On our final Sunday there, we split into two groups and went to two separate churches. My group went to Lawley Family Fellowship in the Lawley township. The church building almost looked abandoned from the outside. The building was missing windows, doors, and even the roof in some areas. After everyone arrived, we went inside of the church to get started. They have to set up chairs every time for church because they’ve had so many robberies. They have had chairs and windows stolen from them before.

The service was amazing! The pastor started by reading scripture and then the congregation sang a few songs led by an amazing woman sitting on the front row. No PowerPoint song lyrics or fancy praise band performance… just powerful voices being raised to an Almighty God. It was in that moment that I began to break. Then, a few people from our team got up and shared their testimonies with the congregation. The pastor introduced a special, unplanned item from the “church sisters”. The ladies got up and started singing on the way up to the stage. These four ladies sang so passionately and loudly, that I can began to sob. The presence of the Holy Spirit in that place… I cannot describe it to you. They sang a few songs and I was overwhelmed by how amazing God is. I was also challenged because often I go to church not in the right attitude. I’m there because thats the thing to do on Sundays or I go looking to see what I can get out of it. If I’m not entertained or satisfied, then I leave in a ‘bleh’ mood. These people were there to worship God to the fullest, even when it wasn’t easy. It wasn’t about them, it was about worshipping Him. After the service, some of the ladies prepared soup for us. They were so kind and giving. The whole day just completely wrecked my soul.


Monday – July 25, 2016

On Monday, we got up early and went to a Christian school chapel service at Graceview Christian School. First, we did an icebreaker song and then a few girls from our team shared their testimonies. After that the whole group sang a song for them and then some of us did a skit. The skit explained the Gospel very clearly and how we can get stuck in sin. Then one of our guys got up and explained the Gospel again and wrapped it up. We had to leave pretty quickly because their chapel service was short, but it was awesome being all together as one group.

That afternoon, we headed to Bosasa Youth Development Center to minister to those in the juvenile detention center. We were separated into different groups. There was a group for the female section, one for the males ages 13-18, and one for males ages 18-21. I was selected to be in the female group, which I was very happy about. To be honest, I was a little frightened to be in either of the male groups. When we got there, we went through security and then had to wait to head to our section. My group was told to follow the males (13-18) group and then we would split up from there. We were standing in the room waiting to go to our section, but we just never did. We still don’t know what happened, but we weren’t able to go to the female section. I was in a horrible mood because I felt like I was being useless just standing on the side. There was already way more of our team than there were guys, so with the girls team being in there too, the ratio was way off. Our team shared testimonies, did icebreakers, and gave the Gospel message. After this, we split up into small groups. As I mentioned before, I was NOT in a good mood. I was bummed because I felt like God was going to use me to bless others that day and here I was standing on the side doing nothing. I looked around the room to try to find a group to join. I finally settled on a group with one boy and two other female leaders. As I approached the group, I suddenly realized that this boy was quoting paragraphs of Scripture. Long story short, this boy had only been saved since May and was so into the Word of God that he knew it by heart. Every time we asked him any question, he would take it back to Scripture.There were a group of guys in the prison that were saved and witnessing to/discipling others. Here I was, pridefully expecting to bless others, when really I was the one who was tremendously blessed.  It was a very humbling experience.

Tuesday – July 26, 2016

Tuesday we went to marketplace to do some shopping. I thought I would be really good at the whole bargaining thing, but boy was I wrong. I was very overwhelmed at this place. I ended up getting stuff that I really wanted for my family and friends, but it was not my favorite experience.

That afternoon, we split into two groups. One group went out to a high school for ministry. My group stayed behind with the Mozambique team, who had just arrived the night before. We gathered around the fire and sang worship songs and talked about what God had done throughout the trip. It was a wonderful time of reflection, fellowship, and worship.

Wednesday – July 27, 2016

On this day, we got up and split off into our two groups for ministry. My group went back to Queens High School like we did the previous week. My bus got there late, so we missed some of the presentation. Testimonies were shared and the message was given. After that, we split into small groups. We went over the lesson and asked them a few questions. At the end of it, we gave them the Gospel of John to take with them.

That afternoon, my group did an Olympian day camp at the WOLZA property like we did the week before. We played games and sang songs with the kids when they got there. Again, the kids were split into two groups by age and I went with the older group. Our kids heard a lesson on Shadrach, Meshach, and Abednego. We then split into small groups. I had a group of two 9 year old girls and one 12 year old girl. I explained the Gospel to them and got to know them a little better. After the event, we were able to line the kids up and give them new clothes. This is an amazing ministry and I am so thankful they do this every week.

That night we went to a restaurant called Carnivore. It is kind of like a Brazilian steakhouse, but with exotic African meats. I tried everything on the menu besides the Crocodile because I had had that before and did not like it. The strangest thing I ate was Zebra, but it was actually quite delicious. I loved being able to experience this with our team. It was a very fun night!

Thursday – July 28, 2016

This morning we got up and headed off for our Safari. We were all SO excited!! We started off by going to an animal creche where we were able to pay to get in the pen with certain animals. I was able to hold baby white lions and play with Anabel the cheetah. She was playful like a dog and tackled me to the ground. I was really scared, but she was just playing. It was awesome being able to see these animals up close. As we drove through the park, I thought about how wonderful God is to create such amazing creatures in such beautiful places. I spent a lot of time in prayer just thanking Him for creation. This was one of the coolest experiences of my life.


That afternoon, we went to Zandspruit again for the after school ministry. We sang, played, and loved on these kids for the second time. After the message, I had a small group of two girls and two boys, all in 3rd and 4th grade. They asked me a lot of questions about God and the Bible, and I was able to share the Gospel with them. It was really hard leaving these kids because they wanted us to come back the next week. This ministry goes on every week though, so those kids will continue to be loved on.

Since this was our last night there, we had a meeting where we sang worship songs and shared what all God had done over the past three weeks. We were all sad to be leaving the next day, but passionate about what God had done. After the meeting, we had a talent show. We had some great acts… some were heartfelt and some were hilarious. It was the perfect ending to our trip.


Friday – July 29, 2016  


Our last day was spent packing, cleaning, and dreadfully saying goodbye to all the people we had served alongside of the past two weeks. We took pictures and hugged all of the wonderful people at WOLZA before getting on the buses and heading off to the airport. I was so sad to leave, but a part of me wanted to get back home. It strangely felt like we had been gone a year, but also that we had only been there for a few days. We had our last meal together (besides the airplane food) at the airport and then got on the plane for a 15 hour flight.

Saturday – July 30, 2016

When we got back to America, we had to split up and go into different places. We hurriedly said goodbye in the airport before catching our next flight. It felt rushed and incomplete. These people had become family in a matter of three weeks and now we had to head back to reality, all in different directions. There were a lot of emotions piled up and no time to deal with them. A group of us were flying to Charlotte next, so we headed to our gates.

Two flights later, we finally arrived back in Greensboro. We were welcomed by loving faces, homemade welcome signs, and thanks to my amazing Mom and Grandma, some sweet tea. Praise the Lord! And just like that, the trip was over.

To say my life has been forever changed would be an understatement. God worked is SO many ways throughout this trip and I am still seeing Him work because of it today. I learned so many lessons, felt His presence, and was impacted by every single person on our team.  I cannot wait to go on another missions trip in the future. He is so amazing and He gets all the glory from all that was accomplished on this trip. I will truly never be the same.

South Africa: Week 1

Saturday – July 16, 2016

On the first full day of ministry, we went to Cosmo City Baptist Church to do a day camp for the kids. We had gone around the neighborhood the afternoon before and handed out flyers for the event. When the kids first started arriving, we began playing different games with them outside. Soccer was by far the most popular pick! After playing for a while, we went inside the church and began by singing songs. The kids really got into it! We then split up into groups of younger kids and older kids/teens. I was with the teenagers. The Gospel message was given to each group and then we broke into small groups. Me and my friend Annie had a group of four girls. We explained the Gospel and prayed with them. Three out of the four came to know Christ! Such a blessing on the first day! We were able to hang out with the kids for a few hours longer and invited them to come back to church the next day.

Sunday – July 17, 2016

Cosmo City Baptist Church

For church we went back to Cosmo City Baptist Church. We were so blessed to see that MANY of the kids we had invited the day before had came back for the Sunday services. We were blessed by songs, a morning devotion, prayer, and the message given by the pastor of the church, Pastor John. Some of the Student Fusion participants, including myself, gave their testimonies in front of the congregation. Then, a lady from the church shared her testimony about how God had continued to be faithful to her and provide for her throughout the years. After church we were able to fellowship with the people from the church. The whole day was such a blessing!

Monday – July 18, 2016

WOLZA- photo by Noah Haneman

On this day, we ministered by working around the Word of Life campus in South Africa (WOLZA). We split up into different groups and tackled different tasks on the property. Some groups had to dig ditches, move rocks, chop wood, etc. each for a specific purpose in order to help with future ministry. My group was assigned to clear out and burn some brush in a wooded area for an upcoming youth event at WOLZA. It was awesome being able to help out the missionaries that live there, but also to help in order for them to be able to minister in different ways in the future.

Tuesday – July 19, 2016


We began by splitting into two groups for ministry. My group went to Orient Hills Daycare which was located in the middle of an informal settlement. The kids were very slow to open up to us and a lot of them didn’t seem to speak much English. This was a drastic difference from what we had experienced with the children we had met thus far. We sang some songs, played games, and a message was given by a team member through an interpreter. They really started to open up when we began playing music and dancing with them… those kids LOVE to dance! I had a very special connection with one of the little girls there. Once she opened up to me, she wouldn’t let me go! We couldn’t verbally communicate due to the language barrier, but we were able to spend time together and show each other love which thankfully does not require any words. She sat in my lap and I sang to her and rocked her. We kept hugging each other and laughing. When we were getting ready to leave, I was holding her and she fell asleep in my arms. It was a very touching moment and even though I do not know her name, I will NEVER forget her. I will always pray for her and carry her in my heart. After that, we went around the settlement in small groups for door to door evangelism. We were able to talk to multiple people and reach them for Christ, which was an amazing feeling. One of the men we talked to really wanted a Bible of his own, so my friend was able to give him her New Testament. We take the access we have to the Word of God for granted so much…

Wednesday – July 20, 2016

On Wednesday, we were split again into our two groups for different ministries. Group 2 (my group) went to do a ministry at Queens High School. We introduced ourselves and then did the “human knot” as an icebreaker. We sang “How Great Is Our God” and then a message was shared. After the message we broke up into small groups in order to talk in further detail. Me and my friend Emily had a group of three girls. We were able to discuss the Gospel further with them and hang out with them for a few minutes. These kids choose to come to this ministry on Wednesdays during their lunch break, when they could be doing so many other things. It was very encouraging to see!

That afternoon, we stayed at the WOLZA property for a ministry that is held weekly for kids and teens.We had several game areas set up when the kids arrived. (I was helping with the duck duck goose area.) After games we all came together for music time. The kids all love the songs! For story time we split up into a younger group (grades 1-3) and an older group (grades 4-7). I stayed with the older group. A guy from our team gave the message to the older ones and a girl from our team gave the message to the younger ones through an interpreter. After the Gospel was shared, we all split up into small groups. I had a group of three sweet girls. We were able to talk about the message that was shared and then pray together! It was encouraging to know that this ministry pours into these kids weekly… it isn’t just a ‘one and done’ type of deal at all.

Thursday – July 21, 2016


On this day, we spent the first half of the day sight seeing. We were able to go to the Apartheid Museum and then on a red bus tour through the city of Joburg. We learned a lot about the history of South Africa and it really made us think differently of the country we were in and the people we got to share Jesus with. Our eyes were definitely opened. The rest of the day we spent at an after school ministry in Zandspruit. We sang songs, played, gave the Gospel message, and broke up into small groups. We were able to hang out with them for a while and love on them. These kids jumped on you and wouldn’t let go! They were definitely some of the most loving kids we met. They were also so interested in hearing the Gospel and listening to what we had to say. When we were leaving, they didn’t want us to go. They asked if we were coming back the next week (which we were) and then they ran beside our car and some even held on while we were trying to leave. We couldn’t wait to get back to them the next week!


Friday – July 22, 2016 

On Friday, we went to a creche in the Lawley township. For this ministry, we did a Micro F1 set up, sang a lot of songs with the kids, and shared the Gospel. They had a pajama day that day and they all looked SO adorable dressed in their PJs. We had a blast getting to sing and dance with these kids, and they LOVED getting hugs and sitting with us. I had four or five in my lap almost the whole time! It was amazing to share the love of Jesus it such seemingly small ways.

This day really taught me something about how God was working in my own life. 1 John 4:19 says that “we love because He first loved us”… now don’t get me wrong, these kids are easy to love. With their constant hugs, smiles, dancing, singing, and laughter, you can’t help but to love them instantly. But,  it truly is amazing HOW MUCH you can love a stranger around the world who you barely know… how much more love the Father has for us and for these children. WOW! God is so good.

Saturday – July 23, 2016 IMG_2545

This day was filled with nonstop activity. We started the day with ministry at a church in Etwatwa. We held a daycamp of sorts for kids and teens. A few of us went around the neighborhood beforehand inviting people to come. It was awesome to see how many kids showed up almost immediately! We started the day with some songs we sang all together as one big group. Everyone got into the songs, from the youngest to the oldest. We then split up into two groups – kids and teens. I stayed with the teen group. We played some games and got to know each other some before heading into the church building for the message. After the message, we broke up into two groups, boys and girls. We were able to discuss the message that had been given and pray with the girls. What a blessing it was to hear these girls ask in depth questions about the Bible and to be able to spend time in prayer with them.

After we left the church, we headed out to go to a real life RUGBY GAME! It was pretty incredible to see my first rugby game, even though I had absolutely no idea what was going on. South Africa won… YAY! I absolutely loved this experience. It was like an American football game mixed with Quidditch mixed with going to the fair… just a whole lot of YES!



I’m home!

I just got back from South Africa today and I know many people are going to ask me about my trip. It is difficult for me to process all that God has done these past few weeks and my feelings about all of it. All I can say right now is that God is so incredibly good. I do have a story to share from today though. Right when we got back to America, we were standing in the airport waiting to board our flight to Charlotte when my friend started up a conversation with an older man and a woman (his daughter) we had briefly spoken to earlier. My friend learned that the man was flying back after attending his sister’s funeral. She had Alzheimer’s disease and had been very sick. The man said he wasn’t sad because “she was in a much better place now”. From there my friend started to ask the man some questions about where he would go after he died. The man said he believed he would go to Heaven, but he wasn’t sure how. He said his plan was to see his loved ones again but that he wasn’t very religious. My friend then started to share the Gospel with him and his daughter. As I sat nearby and listened, I realized we’re definitely not in Africa anymore. The man said his other daughter was a Christian and that he knew all about it, so he didn’t want to discuss it now. He didn’t want to talk religion. He had no certainty. No hope. He was just guessing on what would be next. That is when it sunk in. That is when I realized that we were back on our continent. Back where people claim to know everything about everything but walk blindly from day to day. My friend ended up praying out loud for the man and his daughter despite his blatant rejection and lack of interest. The man walked away in the middle of the prayer. He wasn’t just annoyed, he was angry. Deeply angry. The whole encounter made me almost break down. The mission field is everywhere. I love international missions. I love Africa. I loved seeing people really listen to the Gospel and take it in, but my heart is absolutely broken for America. My own backyard. People “know” all about Jesus here and they just blatantly reject Him “I don’t want to talk religion” they say. They are so blind and they do not care. How do you live every single day with no purpose or assurance? Without knowing the love of God, the Creator of all things? In America we shove ourselves in various distractions so we don’t have to think. We push away the Lord. We live unintentionally. We get by.

So yes, I will be posting a detailed report on what happened in South Africa hopefully this week, but I just had to share this first because the contrast between the two is so unreal. I hope to go back to ZA one day… matter of fact, I want to go all over the world and share the love and truth of God, but I will NOT sit idle until then. I cannot. Please join me in praying for America. If you think we are the richest country, you are highly mistaken. I would rather live in a house made of tin and cardboard and know the love of Christ than to live in a mansion with no hope, peace, love, or joy. Nothing compares to Him. That is what this trip taught me.




In my current walk with God, I’m diving in and trying to really understand who I am in Christ. I know what He means to me, but what do I really mean to Him? After all there are over 7 billion people in the world and I am but a speck of sand among everyone else. In our little human minds it is very hard to balance our identity. We either live as though we are the center of the universe, or as though we are insignificant, forgotten, and nothing at all.

Today during my quiet time, I kept reading different verses regarding different subjects, but the same word kept popping up… “heir”. The ever trusty Mr. Webster defines this word as “one who inherits or is entitled to inherit property or one who receives or is entitled to receive some endowment or quality from a parent or predecessor”. Romans 8:15 says, “for you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”. As believers we are sons and daughters of the Creator of the universe. Galatians 3:29 says that we are Christ’s. We are heirs.

So what exactly do we inherit? What does it mean to be an heir of God? How do we LIVE like an heir? (Whoa buddy, do I struggle with that last one…)

First of all, God chose us through spiritual adoption. He chose us. He wanted us – each of us. We aren’t just specks. We are noticed, chosen, and cherished. As an adopted child of the King, we were taken from our filthy rags and given instead the robes of royalty through Christ Jesus. Not because of who we are or what we have done or even what we deserve. We were lowly, poor, and destitute in our sin. But Jesus saw us, chose us, redeemed us, and made us a part of His family forever. We are princesses. We are princes. We are chosen heirs.

So what is our inheritance? We have probably all heard about receiving eternal life in Heaven through Jesus… But what about right now? What about this day-to-day, mundane life we live? Well, as believers, we inherit His precious Spirit. In this we get a relationship with the Creator of all things, who literally named every single star (Psalm 147:4). That is just beyond my comprehension. Such a big God that He knows all of His creation intimately and has chosen such a relationship with them. We as adopted heirs, unworthy yet chosen, get a forever love story with THE King! As a vivid dreamer and a fairy tale lover at heart, this just overwhelms me… talk about the ultimate Cinderella story! He has given us His Holy Spirit while we are still here on earth, not yet in our forever Kingdom. This Spirit guides, helps, comforts, loves, and walks with us. We have personal access to the King. What an inheritance indeed!

But it doesn’t stop there… The Bible says we are heirs along with Christ (Romans 8:17). You mean we inherit all that Christ inherits? Yep. Co-heirs with the Savior of the world, no big deal. I would say that this shows how serious God is about our adoption. We are truly His! We receive the riches of glory and of His grace while we are here on earth and then wonders unimaginable when we enter into the Kingdom of Heaven (1 Corinthians 2:9).

So, how do we live accordingly? How do you live like an heir to the King of Kings when you feel lower than dirt sometimes? When the oppressor (Satan) is trying to make you feel like an unloved orphan or an outcast or an unworthy servant?

  1. We remember who our King is! (Nehemiah 9:6; Isaiah 40:12-28; John 16:33; 1 John 4:4)
  2. We remember that the end of our story is already written and secured! (Revelation 17:4; Matthew 25:32-36)
  3. We remember that not by our own self, but by our Father we are royal heirs! (Romans 8:14-17; John 3:16; Luke 12:32)
  4. We remember we do not rely on our strength to walk this daily life! (Psalm 94:22; Acts 20:32; Proverbs 3:5-6)

Guys and gals, we are heirs of an abundant life while still here in our temporary home and then we will inherit eternal life in our forever home (a palace) with our King forever and ever. Now that is a real fairy tale. Let us all (myself definitely included) start living as heirs. “And they lived happily ever after…”


sitting still at a green light.


Have you ever been stopped at a traffic light, perhaps distracted by something else, when all of a sudden you hear a loud honk coming from behind you? The light has turned green and you weren’t paying attention. Immediately you push the gas pedal, perhaps a little embarrassed and irritated with the impatient driver behind you. I mean come on, it was just an accident. It would be absolutely absurd to purposefully sit through a green light. No one would ever do that.

Well I hate to tell ya… but as believers we are sometimes sitting still when we should clearly be going. I mean lets face it, when the Creator of all things says “Go”… you go! Know what I’m referring to yet? Yep, that’s right…The Great Commission. As believers, we are ALL told to go (Matthew 28:16-20), not just a chosen few. One of my biggest discoveries this past year was when I realized this was indeed a command. It isn’t called ‘The Great Suggestion’ after all. God wants us to go, yes, but He also commands us to go. Sometimes He may even be honking His horn, but we ignore Him. We sit still when the light is green.

Let me rewind to a few months ago and give you a little timeline of what God has been doing in my life. After I graduated from college in May and moved back home in August, I was determined to figure out the next chapter of my life-on my own. I’ve been a Christian for a while now, but one with a major control issue and a bad attitude to boot (still working on that). I would give God parts of my life or take His opinion into strong consideration before stubbornly doing my own thing. When I moved back home, I knew that I wanted to get really involved in church again, and take this gap year to grow in all areas of my life. Little did I know what He had in store.

As September approached, God was just really working in my life. I knew I was a Christian, but something was a little off, and I felt a strong tug in my heart. Not even knowing what the reason for this ‘tug’ was, I began to fight it. I was unnecessarily angry and defensive. Turns out this ‘tug’ was an internal war of control. Long story short, at the end of the month, I fully surrendered my daily life to Him-every single detail. Now, I would be lying if I said that I never try to play tug-of-war with Him, but I am fully committed to daily surrendering. After I rededicated my life, a lot started happening in my College and Career Bible study group concerning missions. A friend and I were randomly talking and I think they were saying how they felt called to go on a mission trip this summer. They asked me if I would ever consider going on one and, although I do not remember exact dialogue, I can tell you I probably scoffed as if repulsed by the idea and said that I just didn’t feel as though God was calling me to do that. I just wasn’t interested. I was afraid God was going to call me to go to the deep jungles where I would be completely isolated and have no Netflix or chicken nuggets for the rest of my life… UGH, can you imagine?! The horror!

One night, we had a speaker from the missions organization Word of Life come to our Bible Study. He gave a presentation about various mission trips happening this summer, and then something caught my attention. He started talking about the Great Commission… only he was saying things I did not want to hear. UGH! ITS A COMMAND?! It was like hearing a honk behind you at a green light and realizing you must go. A little embarrassed, a little irritated… I moved my foot towards the gas pedal.

About the trip: 

I have been called specifically to go on a mission trip with Word of Life to South Africa and Mozambique this summer. This will be a three week Student Fusion trip, which means it will be a group of college kids that will train in New York for a week before departing to South Africa. I have been blessed with the opportunity to go as a counselor on this trip! Although this is my first international mission trip, and I feel so unqualified, I am so excited to lean on the Lord for support and guidance as I am given the chance to support and help guide these students. To Him alone be the glory!

While in Africa, our team will be involved with community outreach, leading various children’s programs, and door-to-door and community evangelism. I am so excited to share the Gospel and God’s amazing love with these people! I’m also thrilled for the unknown! God is in complete control, and I cannot wait to see what He has in store for me and everyone else on this trip.


What I need from you: 

First and foremost, I need your prayers. Pray that God will continue to work in my life, and prepare me now and for the next few months before my trip. Pray that He prepares the hearts of the other counselors/leaders and students heading out on this adventure as well. Please also pray for us while we are actually there. Pray for our safety, for us to radiate His love every single day to all we meet, and for us to stay focused. Most importantly, pray that the people we are ministering to would hear His call and feel His presence. Pray for His will to be done every step of the way!

Secondly, I need you to pray that God will provide the funds needed for this trip. Because of the location and length of this trip, it is pretty costly. I have to raise the full $3,489 by May 10th. I know that this is absolutely nothing to such a BIG God, but to little ole me, that is a BIG number. Please pray that God would provide (as He always does). I also sincerely ask that you would prayerfully consider financially supporting me, as I step out in faith to serve the Lord. You would be more than a financial supporter, you would be a part of this journey and ministry! You would be helping others hear the Gospel!!

I have made a GoFundMe account for my trip, and will put the link for it at the end of this post. I also will include links to Word of Life’s mission page and to the WOL Student Fusion page that goes into more detail about our trip to South Africa/Mozambique. I will be posting updates on here in the next few months leading up to my trip, and then I will be doing a daily online journal during my trip-if possible. If not, then I will still try to update events of what happened each day after I return. Either way, YOU get to be a part of the journey, and YOU will have made a difference for eternity. YOU will be helping to spread the Gospel.

Thank y’all so much for reading this long post! I am sorry to be such a chatty Cathy…or I guess a chatty Casey. Please contact me if you have any questions!

Love, Casey


GoFundMe || Word of Life  || WOL Student Fusion