Neon Lighted Path

Have you ever wondered why every path, adventure, hardship you have walked on happened the way it did? Why God gave you the parents you got? Or the weird siblings He paired you with? Why you thought you wanted to be a Marine Biologist, forcing you to apply to colleges strictly in the East Coast? Why you were accepted to a Catholic school in Miami, Florida? Why He made you an overachiever, prompting your school to nominate you to attend a forum? A forum of Faith? Why God gave you the funny surfer mentor who asked the most realest question you have ever heard, “Do you know OF Jesus or do you KNOW Him?” A question that lead you to an internship that was really hard to explain to your parents? An internship that led you to your dream country, allowing you to learn so much about your Heavenly Father? Why He put specific desires and dreams in your heart? Why He continues to point neon lights to the path He wants you to go on? But sometimes you don’t think He’s talking?

Well, maybe not specifically these questions but similar ones. I have to say the past two years in my life have been, *dramatic pause of reflection trying to figure out the right words*, incredible. Hard. Growing. Inspirational. Renewing.

“but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40: 31

This past March I knew it was time to step into something different in my career and I began the process of applying to new opportunities. One day out of nowhere, I started an application to go back to school. To be honest I became very overwhelmed and anxious, thinking that I was crazy for considering applying to this particular school. My thoughts wandered between “I could never belong there” “if they find out about my past, I won’t even get accepted” “Am I crazy?” I closed my computer, left the coffee shop, and didn’t think much of it for the next three weeks. On my drive back from work one day I was listening to Kris Vallotton’s sermon “Called to Courage” (from January 7th 2018. Just in case you want to listen to it, it’s kind of great). Mr. Vallotton spoke about anxiety in a way that I had never thought about. He said “Often, the fact we experience anxiety is the reason why we know we are going the right direction.” Well hot dog! Ain’t that something? Needless to say a few hours later, I went back to complete my application and submitted it. Three weeks went by (reminder: this was all during my job seeking process) and I was finally getting some job offers with incredible companies, doing exactly what I wanted to do.  One job in particular was basically it my dream job. It was the end of the week and I had calls scheduled with the companies to discuss contracts the next week. The following Tuesday, I was finally given an interview slot for school. I was literally about to throw up because of everything that was going on (ok, not literally – I was just REALLY nervous). God really blessed me in favor with the companies I applied to, as they were all gracious in waiting until after my interview to take the next step.

The day of the school interview came and, y’all, I have had some great interviews but this one was incredible. My closing question for the admissions advisor was when I would hear back from them with a decision. My amazing advisor answered, “Well it can be two to four weeks or a couple of days, but no longer than four weeks for sure”.Five hours later. Let me repeat, five hours I received acceptance into the school I had been fearful to apply to.  Unbelievable.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding” Proverbs 3:5

During this whole searching for the next career step, I leaned on my own understanding. I thought I should follow the same path I saw my peers walking on: find a good paying job and start a long-term career. I had already taken a “gap year,” which I then followed that by taking a short-term job. I had plenty of loans piling up and waiting to be paid from my first degree. Yet, I found my heart aching for something more. I yearned for more Jesus. More Holy Spirit. More of my Heavenly Father.  

So, it is with great joy that I am excited to announce (drumroll please) … come the fall, I will be attending Bethel School of Supernatural Ministry in Redding, California!! I am sad to be physically leaving the family and community I have been blessed with on the East Coast. However, I could not be more thrilled to discover why The Lord is leading me to the West Coast.

Now, this is where I swallow my pride and I ask for help. First, please pray for logistics to settle into place. This includes: cost of tuition, housing/roommates, and the actually moving process getting out West, etc. Secondly, in order to go to school,  I need to raise $5,000 dollars for tuition alone. To be honest, if the Lord blesses me with more it would be a huge help for living expenses and costs that will arise throughout my time in the program.

Thank you for taking the time to read this life update. Furthermore, thank you for the support you have poured out to me over the years. If words could jump off the page, this whole letter would resemble a child on a trampoline:  I. AM. SO. EXCITED. I am filled with peaceful yet anticipation at the promise of what The Lord is doing in my life and in yours! This note is not just meant to tell you about me. Please please please, send me updates on how you are and what you are doing. I would love to grow through our respective seasons in life together. I leave your eyes with the following: He is listening, He desires to hear our cries.

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Phil. 4:6

Ways to donate financially:

  1. PayPal:   PayPal.Me/sgperez93
  2. Venmo: SheilaPerez28
  3. Donating directly to Bethel: https://my.bssm.net/donations/students/search.
    • Donors can simply search for Sheila Perez, click on the tuition link, and follow the prompts. Please note that no tax credit will be issued as tuition payments do not qualify under US law.

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