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Author Archives: courtenayfolk

About courtenayfolk

My family and I have been called to the missionfield of Costa Rica. Our mission is to share the message of God's grace with the Ticos there. We live on the Volcano Irazu.

Break My Heart for What Breaks Yours

That has been my prayer.  One of my favorite songs says, “….break my heart for what breaks Yours….show me how to love like You have loved me……everything I am for Your Kingdom’s cause….”  I truly want to see the world as the Lord sees it and love others the way that He has and does love me.  Since I have started praying for this, the Lord has put me in situations to see Him minister to others and show me how we can minister to others.  Over the last two months I have gotten the privilege of people who are suffering under the trials of this world to share with me and I have seen how hard this life can be.  We were in the middle of all of the tornadoes in Alabama that came through and we drove up on houses where a tornado had just ripped people’s houses and lives apart and they were just standing with their hands on their heads in shock.  In trying to prevent a latino woman from having an abortion, I saw young women coming out of the abortion clinic crying because they had just had an abortion.  It was a sight that I think I will never forget and it broke my heart.

Now the question is, what do I do…. how do I respond to Him breaking my heart for what breaks His?  The first thought that comes to my mind is LOVE.  God loved me when I was unlovable.  He has given me hope in His love and His promises.  I have faith in His character.  He has granted me grace in my most difficult times to endure and even worship Him when the world thinks otherwise.  Therefore, I am to extend His love to others.  I am to share His hope and promises with others.  I am to share and teach others about His character so that they too can run to Him in their time of need.

My challenge to you – Will you open your eyes to see as He sees and love as He loves?  Will you allow Him to break your heart for what breaks His?  Will you help others by sharing the ultimate gift of salvation through Christ and not keep it to yourself?

2 Thessalonians 2:16-17  ” 16 May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and by his grace gave us eternal encouragement and good hope, 17 encourage your hearts and strengthen you in every good deed and word.”

Please listen to this song and be challenged to love people right where they are and love them with the love that you have been given!!

 
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Posted by on May 22, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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Update and Prayer Requests

Hi guys!!  Whew!!!  What a busy whirlwind we have been in lately!!  I
apologize for not updating everyone in a couple of weeks.  We have
been tremendously busy!  We have over the past weeks met with new
churches, already supporting churches, possible future ministry
partners, spoke with around 300 AWANA children, I (Courtenay) attended
a women’s retreat with Kay Arthur and the women of Mt. Moriah, and
Jacob has even played in a couple of church softball games!  In the
middle of all of that, we have been doing home school and trying to
visit with friends and family!  We are currently in North Carolina at
a Church Planting seminar that will last until Thursday.

I tell you all of that to let you know that we really have appreciated
all of your prayers and we ask that you continue to pray for us…..
1.  We need energy.
2.  Quality rest when we can get it.
3.  Remembrance on my part to take my medicine – last week I forgot my
weekly dose of Methotrexate and I got in a lot of pain.
4.  We are attending a church planting seminar until Thursday
afternoon.  My parents are keeping the children and doing their home
school with them.
5.  We will be traveling on Friday to pick up the children and then
from there, we will drive to Mississippi.
6.  We are speaking Easter Sunday in Iuka, MS, then we will speak in
Alabama, then we will head back to SC probably on the following
Thursday.
7.  That we would share God’s love and grace with all of those that
the Lord places in our paths.
8.  As we share about the Lord’s work in Costa Rica and in our family
that others would be drawn to and/or closer to our Heavenly Father.

We love each of you and cherish your prayers,
Jacob and Court

Romans 15:4-6

4 For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us,
so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the
encouragement they provide we might have hope.

5 May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same
attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had, 6 so that
with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our
Lord Jesus Christ.

 
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Posted by on April 18, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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“…whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God”

1 Corinthians 10:31

Have you ever really considered this verse?  Whatever means what?  Everything?  Perhaps.

That is how I am thinking of it.  Everything I do, I should do it all for God’s glory.  Before I left Costa Rica a young lady friend asked me, “Do you only listen to Christian music?”  And I replied yes.  I began to think on that.  And my reasons behind that.  Then thinking on my life…. Do I do all things as if I am trying to do it to bring God glory?  Quite a challenge.  I worship through music for His glory.  I assist others for His glory.  I live in Costa Rica and serve the Ticos, teams and my family for His glory….. but what about other things?  Little things?  Quite a challenge and I would extend that challenge to you as well.  Just to think about this mandate from Scripture.

That brings me to this weekend.  As many of you know, this time last year I was barely able to walk across a room.  When I walked, I walked very slowly and more of a waddle.  Last March we took the kids to CharlesTowne Landing and I had to have my kids and Jacob push me in a wheelchair to make it through the park.  When the Cooper River Bridge Run came around last year, I realized it was something I had heard of my whole life.  I always thought, “I am going to do it one day.”  And I wondered, “Is it too late?  Will I ever be able to walk like that again?”  My next appointment with Dr. Gary Gilkeson I asked him if he thought I would ever be able to do something like that again.  It was hard to even get the question out of my mouth and I was on the verge of tears anticipating his answer.  At that time, I was in physical therapy 3 times a week and I was relearning balance…. relearning to put my pants on without sitting down and lifting my legs up with my hands….. relearning and regaining strength in my legs, shoulders and arms.  When he replied that he thought I would be able to do that, I was relieved and shocked.  I hoped…. I dreamed…. but never would I have imagined that only 1 year later……

Cooper River Bridge

Cooper River Bridge

This past weekend was a major milestone for me….  Over this past year I have followed all instructions given to me by my doctors and taken all medicines prescribed.  And I walked and walked our driveway in Costa Rica.  But bigger than that, I had God encouraging me and lifting me and gradually taking my pain away.  There is no cure for dermatomyositis and interstitial lung disease.  Some people live with these diseases without ever being fully out of pain.  I had given my body to the Lord.  Followed instructions.  Left my progress and pain relief in His hands and His timing.    In God’s good timing and plan, He has used my doctors and modern medicine and really worked wonders in my body.  A couple of weeks after the last chemo infusion that I received on October 31st, I woke up one morning and realized I had NO pain.  I was in shock and praising God.  I was breathing easier and able to get around and do all of my everyday tasks so much easier.  God was so good and is so good to me!!

As we got closer to spring, I remembered my question to Dr. Gilkeson last year about the Cooper River Bridge race and realized that we were going to be in SC during the race and I knew immediately that I wanted to get in good enough shape to do it for God!!  I let my friends and family know my plans and asked if any wanted to join me.  Sure enough, my mom, sister Monica and friend Donna Porter wanted to join me.  We trained and practiced and all met up Friday to get set up for Saturday.  Saturday morning came and our goal was to finish the 10K in 2 hours.  We got up early and drove over to Mt. Pleasant.  We got into place and the race started.  As we finally got going, a little ways past the start line we saw a man on the side of the road having pacemaker problems and I thought, “Can I really do this?”  But pushed the doubt aside and pushed forward.  We walked and walked and walked.  Before I knew it, we were on the Charleston side of the bridge and the crowds were there cheering everyone on saying the finishline was right around the corner.  And then, there it was…. right there!!  The finishline!!  10K behind me!!  And not only did I finish, but faster than my goal of 2 hours.  We finished in 1 hour 49 minutes!!  Thank you Donna, Momma and Monica for doing this with me!  Many people were praying for me and us and I truly appreciate it.  God was honored and answered our prayers!!

I can honestly say that me doing that walk was not about me.  It was not about dermatomyositis and interstitial lung disease.  It was about God.  He is so amazing.  He has taken me from extreme pain and hardly mobile to no pain and able to walk 6.2 miles!  And even when I was in major pain over this past year and a half, He carried me.  He gave me grace to endure and persevere.  And He gave me the umph I needed to push through the pain and continue to workout and restrengthen my muscles and praise Him all the way.  He was the one that I wanted to walk for and do to bring Him glory so that others would see what an awesome God He is.

So that brings us back to our verse.  And my challenge to you and to myself is to do all the things we do daily for the glory of God….. making breakfast, washing clothes, disciplining children, being a serving/loving/helping spouse, employee, …….watching the sports game, shopping, spending money, giving money away….. all for His glory.  Tougher than it sounds.  What a big challenge in such a few words.

Here are some pictures from my big, glorious day walking the Cooper River Bridge for God’s glory 🙂

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Posted by on April 3, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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End of March Update and Prayer Requests

Hi guys!!

It’s been another great week here in the States!!  All of our meetings and speaking arrangements have gone wonderfully!!  Highlights were the IABC Conference, speaking at Mt. Airy missions meeting, getting to see Dr. Gilkeson and meeting Will Browning!! Thank you for your prayers!!
This coming week’s activities include….
1.  My mom, sister Monica, friend Donna Porter and I are doing the Cooper River Bridge walk Saturday April 2nd.  This is to give glory to God for Him bringing my body so far in the last year that this is even possible!!  A year ago I could not hardly walk a block …. 6.2 miles would have been impossible!!  We have the dermatomyositis and the interstitial lung disease under control and we are praising God for this!!  This will be exciting and emotional all at once.
2.  We will be returning to the Upstate to share with the elders of Mount Moriah Baptist on Tuesday night and then Philadelphia Baptist on Wednesday night.
3.  In anticipation that my body handles me walking 6.2 miles on Saturday, I am going to attempt to go down on my Prednisone next week.
Thank you for keeping up with us and continuing to pray for us!
We love each of you!!
Court
Me and my love!
 
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Posted by on March 31, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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We are back in the USA!!

Hi guys!!  Well, we have been back in the States now for a week and it has been packed with activity!!  🙂  Thanks to your prayers, our flights were the smoothest yet.  Zorro (our dog) did fantastic on the plane, I think most passengers were shocked when we were deplaning and they realized we had a dog, because he did not make a peep!  And the customs officials were great!  They thought he was the cutest and were so sweet to him!!  We rented a car and drove from Orlando to Charleston and arrived around 3am!  It was very easy and it was nice to wake up at mom and dad’s house!!  We were able to spend a couple of days in Charleston.  Mom and dad and I walked the Stono bridge a couple of times (3 miles) in preparation for the Cooper River Bridge Walk.  And we were able to spend my birthday with my parents!!  It was a great day!  Then we headed to Easley and got settled in at the Boles wonderful house!  We got to worship with our family at Mount Moriah Baptist and that is always a treasure and treat, something that we do not take for granted – being able to worship with other believers in English!!  🙂  This week will be a busy week!  I am finishing creating our newest video.  I will speak tonight with a women’s mission group and then we are speaking tomorrow night in Belton, then I speak at the IABC conference Saturday at 11:15am, and then we are speaking at a missions meeting at Mt. Airy Sunday night!  Please be in prayer about all of these!  Please pray that God would be glorified and others would draw closer to God through our sharing.

We will continue to keep you posted and covet your prayers!
Court
 
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Posted by on March 22, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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Roadtrip turned aggrivation, turned to surprise blessing!

So a couple of days ago, we decided to go for a drive with the kids out of our area to just have some relaxing time as a family.  In all our time here on Irazu, we have never taken a day to spend time with the kids and relax.  We decided that we wanted to take the kids through the mountains that we can see on the other side of the valley.  It is easily done and we were into the mountains within about 15 – 20 minutes.  It was a beautiful drive, one that went up to over 10,000 feet in elevation.  Then it went down the 10,000 feet to the other side of the mountains.  We all were having a great time.  We relaxed and played together as a family.  Then, when it was time to head back, the car started having BIG problems!  We knew we were not going to make it back over the mountains.  We could hardly get out of first gear and the car had a ton of black smoke pouring out of the back and it sounded horrible.  We tried just buying some coolant and more oil, hoping that would help.  In God’s providence, the new bottle of oil spilled all over the floorboards and never got into the car and we were in desperate need of way more help.  So we found a safe place for the kids and I to stay while Jacob went in search of a mechanic.  We had known for a while now that we were going to have to replace the motor, but we had been putting it off.  And sure enough the mechanic said that our crank shaft had broken and it was a HUGE fix, so we started praying about replacing the motor.  We called my parents, thinking we did not have the funds to do so and thought that we could borrow the money from them until we had the funds and would repay them.  We called Johnny and he said to just call Global Outreach and see if we had enough funds to replace it.  So I called Marla at GO and I was so nervous.  However, Marla was excited!!  She said that I would not believe how people had responded to us letting them know about our financial situation!!  She said that before our February paycheck, insurance and taxes had come out of our funding, we had received …… brace yourself ….. almost $11,000!!  Guys you are amazing!!  GOD is AMAZING!!  God knew we needed a new motor, He knew we needed our paycheck, He knew, He Knew, HE KNEW!!!  So needless to say, our account has already taken a hit, but to quote Johnny, “God never gives us extra.  He gives us what we need.  Sometimes He provides when we need it, sometimes after a need arrises, and sometimes before we have the need!” 

We now have the car fixed!!  When I drove it yesterday, it was amazing.   We still have to tweak it a little in that it is a newer motor in an old car, but all in all, it is fabulous!! 

As far as our financial situation goes, we are so amazed, humbled and blessed by your giving hearts!  We are so encouraged and thankful.  Our prayer is that the Lord would raise up more monthly supporters so that we will not get back into the situation we just found ourselves in.  Please join us in that prayer.  If you would like to become a monthly donor, please contact us or Global Outreach to let us know so that we can account for it in our planning.  For all of you that have faithfully supported us, THANK YOU!!  You guys have been there for us financially, spiritually, prayerfully…. we could not be here without you!! 

Eph.  3: 20 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, 21 to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen.

Here are some photos of our breakdown!  These were taken at a temporary mechanic’s shop out in the countryside as we prayed for the Lord to get us back to the nearest big city where we knew we could get major help for the car!

 
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Posted by on March 4, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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Mount Moriah Baptist Church Costa Rica Team 2011

If you would like to check out the photos we took during Mount Moriah Baptist’s trip to Costa Rica, check them out at this link…..

https://www.facebook.com/album.php?aid=111674&id=1241408466&l=548fd79615

We were so blessed by this team coming to serve with us in Costa Rica.  Not only did they share their testimonies of our Lord’s  glorious work in their lives, conduct Bible studies, lead singing and play with the children, but most importantly, they shared God’s love with the Ticos and our family!  What a joy and privilege to have them!

 
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Posted by on February 25, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

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