Thursday, November 25, 2010

Bittersweet Thanksgiving.

All day I have been thinking about what to say that I'm thankful for.
I explained what Thanksgiving is probably a million times.
:) But truly I am happy. For so many reasons.

Here I go:
How lucky I am to be free.
To choose my own desitiny.
I will never take my freedom for granted again.
I can't wait to have a voice.

I was born in America.
Enough said.
Thank you Jesus for letting me be born in a place where I can have an education and everything handed to me on a silver platter.

I am blessed to have the opportunity to live in India.
I'm thankful that I get to see these kids everyday and show them what love looks like.
They teach me so much about life.
Even though sometimes it might be really difficult.

Honestly, I have had a LOT of best friends. Probably like 1,000. I have collections and categories of them.
But these two are more than best friends.
Kailtin Bowyer. She is my prayer warrior, my comforter, my listener, my voice of reason. She helps hold me together and pieces me back together when I'm broken. Even though we may be scary different, we understand each other's hearts, which I guess endless hours of car rides together might do to you, but really, thank you for being my best friend.
Thanks for the smushed cupcakes ;), oreos, skittles, and games for my kids. :)

Austin Greco. You know all the bad, nasty and ugly stuff... but you always point me towards what is beautiful, Jesus. :) Thank you for constantly praying for me when I was breaking down with my insides coming out. Your lame Pope jokes about his hat really do make me laugh. :)

I pray for them everyday, I hate being away from them. I truly am so thankful for them. Mom, Dad, Em, Rick, Chan, Gram, Popop, Aunt Bec (sorry you had to be alone doing accounting on Thanksgiving--please pray for her). I love you all so much. I wish I could be home with you guys.
They made a Flat Nat this week which pretty much made my entire life.
It's the nicest thing anyone's ever done for me.

I know it may be difficult to share openly the depths of my heart with you all, but truly, you give me a reason to stay everyday. Your words of thanksgiving brought tears to my eyes tonight(and you don't even know what it is!). The thing is, everyone wanted to be my friend. I am the American, therefore, all want to be associated with Map. But you...You got to know Natalie. You know that I love to laugh and be silly, my favorite foods and drinks, you know the desires of my heart, when I'm pretending to be happy but inside I'm really crying. Thank you for knowing the real me. For giving me all you have, when I know you have so little...I love you all so dearly. Thank you for making a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner for me even though we had no gas or electricity. I will never forget my Thanksgiving in India because of you.
God, please bless this family with things of Your Kingdom FOREVER.

FOR ALL OF THESE THINGS, for changing me. I had a friend tell me this week..."before you left, all you cared about was facebook, boys, and clothes..." That person was so right. God has completely and totally flipped my world upside down and made me a new Natalie. I like who I am...Who would have ever thought?!
Today on the way to my second family's house for Thanksgiving I was stopped so many times. First, I got word that my Dinesh and Robin were sick. So I found them and prayed for them. Then I heard Maryum was sick, so I stopped at the house she was at and prayed and sat with her for awhile...After not speaking for hours, she saw the tears in my eyes and got out, "I'm fine, Map Didi." :( My heart. I said, "You are not fine, baby." Please pray for my kids with malaria.Then I got stopped again by a bible college student. She was crying so hard. She is an orphan and she feels so alone in this world, without a home and a family. I prayed with her and told her that she's not alone, that she has a father in heaven who loves her very much. I continued to get stopped with people asking me to pray for them... Finally I got to my family's house, even though I was an hour late, I felt so grateful for so many reasons. I think God wanted to remind me how incredibly blessed I am. I have so many reasons to be thankful.

After the electricity and gas went out I texted my Aunt.
Her reply:
"TII...This is India."

One Grateful Girl

P.S. This week when I came to my second family's house, I found my eyes pasted on their wall. Weird, flattering, funny ("so this way you are always with us!").

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

BREAKING NEWS! Finally figured it out:

This has been VERY MUCH long awaited if you know Natalie Grace Donald.
For years and years I have been trying to figure it out and I think I finally have.
How you might ask?
By letting go and letting God figure it out.

So here it is:
I was blessed with the spiritual gift of mercy.

the divine enablement to cheerfully and practically help those who are suffering or are in need, compassion moved to action. People with this gift: focus upon alleviating the sources of pain or discomfort in suffering people; address the needs of the lonely and forgotten; express love, grace, and dignity to those facing hardships and crisis; concern themselves with individual or social issues that oppress people.

So I have been praying about it for so long and it finally just came to me, in the form of pictures in my mind during church one Sunday morning.
I want to bring comfort to those who are suffering. Perhaps, maybe even work for World Help or World Vision or Children of the Nations one day.
I want to be the person that comes in after a tsunami hits, or a village is attacked, or a family loses a child, or someone finds out they have cancer.
I want to bring hope, healing, and restoration.
I know I still have a long way to go in maturity and schooling.
But I pray that one day God can use me in these areas.
After talking with some sources, I think that going into social work at a Christian school would be the best thing for that profession (if you know any colleges with good social work programs, let me know!).
Please pray that God makes it clear where He wants me and that He provides the money that I may need once I get there. :)

Please also pray for a hard decision I may have to make in the next few weeks.

To those who care about the little things about my life like what I want to do.. Thank you.

I love you and I'm thankful for you,

Sunday, November 21, 2010

You're invited to the Pity Party of Natalie Donald

Yiggity yo,
So I haven't written a blog in awhile due to the fact that only semi-depressing things have been flooding my mind. But I need prayer and encouragement and friends. Yikes. I feel so tired. Satan keeps knocking me down over and over again. Last night ,I was legit making a plan of coming home. That's how serious as a heart attack I was. But whenever I thought about telling my aunt and the karuna kids, I broke down and cried. I couldn't even imagine it.

I guess I expected these things to happen. No, I really DID expect these things to happen. But now that they are...I feel like I'm suffocating.
I know..I'm so over dramatic.
Persecution. It's the worst. I guess all of these trials are taking place to teach me that I can only trust one person. I need to rejoice in these times of trials. But my heart simply cannot comprehend that there are really evil people out there. I can only pray that God will give them hearts of flesh one day. All week I've had this verse in my head...echoing over and over again: "We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed." 2 Corinthians 4:8.

Familiarity. Things are becoming familiar to me. Which is not good.Kids not having shoes. Families digging through trash to find a scrap to eat. Beggars with no hands. Children with dead eyes. All of it. It's not breaking my heart anymore and that scares me. Things that used to haunt my mind and scar my brain, are beginning to fade.
Restore the compassion and mercy inside of me, Oh Father.

Homesick. Straight up, realness with you...It's Thanksgiving on Thursday. And I'm sad, my heart aches. I want to be home so badly. Honestly, I don't care about the turkey or the stuffing or even the sweet potatoes with marshmallows on top...I want to be home with the people who love and care about me.

These emotions are real and raw and I'll probably regret each thing I said in the morning. But I ask that you just remember me this week. I ask that you pray for me not to be too sad...or want to run away whenever the going gets tough.

No turning back, no turing back,

P.S. Thanks best friend for praying for me and in your prayer mentioning that I'm pretty baller. It made my awful day a little better.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


  1. This week I got bored.
  2. Why you might ask?
  3. Well, because my lovies have been on Diwali vacation for 2 weeks.
  4. I never thought bored would be a bad thing.
  5. But then! My brain began to semi do what it does best.
  6. Worry.
  7. It is professional at worrying.
  8. What does it have to worry about?
  9. Well: What college am I going to go to? Where am I going to live when I get back? How will I ever get a job? How will I get a car to get to my job? How will I earn money to buy a car? How can I go to school if I have no money? Where will I go to church? Where can I find a church with a good college group? Who will help me through this processing process I will go through when I get back? How will I find Christian friends? Who will pray for me when I have something as simple as leg pain?
  10. I also started missing home like crazy.
  11. So…My Karuna Children are home now(Praise the Lord).
  12. But my mind is still disturbed.
  13. So what I’m asking from you…
  14. Is that you pray for all of these worries.
  15. And pray for me to just give them to God.
  16. And know that He will provide.
  17. And He has perfect timing
Evidence of my boredom:
  1. Natalie Grace Donald

Saturday, November 13, 2010

To the happy couple :)

My sister and her future husband, my future brother, Eric.
I am soooo happy for you two.

This week I wrote down what I want in a husband one day when I get over the "I wanna be single forever" phase of my life, so I don't forget:
1. I want him to be willing to lay down his life for me, just as Christ did for us.
2. I want him to nurture me and care for me, make me feel loved.
3. I want him to be my best friend who I trust with everything. Then love.
4. I want him to know me, know my heart, pursue my heart.
5. I want our desire to be to seek the kingdom together, to further it.
6. I want him to cherish, protect, and guard my heart.
7. I want to have fellowship and prayer together.
8. I want him to love me, but worship the Lord.

I think all of these things Eric and Em have. I pray that God blesses your marriage for the rest of your lives. Looking at your engagement pictures is like eating candy. They are beautiful and the love you two have for one another is so evident. Like iron sharpening iron. :)
I love you two. Congratulations and thank you for being an example in my life.
I can't wait to help plan in 4 months (if you'll let me). :)

Friday, November 12, 2010

God's Voice

Rainbows. Donkeys. Writing with His finger in the sand. Creation. Angels. Dreams. Visions. Pillars of fire. Pillars of clouds. Supernatural Events. Stopping the Earth's rotation. Signs. Circumstances. Audible voice. Impressions. Music. People. Scripture. Inner Spirit.

Last night I was listening to this sermon from the Kansas City Boiler Room (my most recent addiction:
And Adam Cox was talking about hearing God's voice.
Lately I have been starving to hear God's voice. Just praying praying praying to hear His voice.
Adam started listing a billion ways we hear God's voice (some listed above).
One of my closest friends here feels like her world is caving in around her. She feels like Satan is attacking her in so many ways. She just kept saying, "God is not with me. He cannot hear me. He has left me. I just want to die." So I grabbed her head, I put my lips to her forehead, and I started praying. "Lord, we want to hear your voice. Father, send us a sign. Heal this broken heart and show Elizabeth that your heart is breaking for her too! Give us a sign, Father! Give us a sign!"
She told me just to leave her...So I began to walk away.
As I was walking away, not even a minute later, I began to feel raindrops. It started to pour, HARD. And it's not even the rainy season here.
It hasn't rained like that since I first came to India.
The Inner Spirit spoke to me: "Go tell her, I have NOT left her."
I ran back and started screaming outside of the Girl's Hostel, "ELIZABETH! ELIZABETH! COME OUTSIDE!"
She finally came out as I stood in the pouring rain.
"See! He is crying just as you are now. He has not left you. He will never leave you."

Please, call me by name Father, because your words are perfect.
Natalie Grace Donald

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

I don't know how many times I've looked at these in the past few days.

It feels like 100 times at least.
I miss my friends. :(

My cup feels empty, and my mouth feels dry.


I feel overwhelmed with all God is trying to teach me. At times, I simply want to give up and say, “I’m ready to go back to my old life. To be old Natalie again, lukewarm. I’m ready to have the lukewarm job and the lukewarm boyfriend and the lukewarm attitude towards You, Father.”

Then I think,

I’d rather be hot, on fire for you, or cold, totally broken, then to come to you at the end of my life, knowing I lived safe, and knowing I chose the world instead of my soul. I chose to die instead of live.”

I feel vulnerable and broken. I feel like everything in my life is being flipped upside down for this King.

Things like this:

to save your life, you have to lose it.

to live, you have to die.

to be powerful, you must become like a child.

to see, you have to have faith in the unseen.

to mature, you have to become humble.

to lead, you have to become like a servant.

"AHHHHHHHH!" Says my brain.

Boy, have I been praying. I feel like all I can do is pray. And I am humbled. Wow, how I am humbled. Tears come with the reality that I have chosen venomous sin in my life, knowing fully well that Jesus was brutally murdered for that sin. Forgiveness and mercy is a beautiful thing that I wish I had more of.

My notebook is completely filled with prayers. I feel like my brain is constantly being regurgitated onto paper.

I wrote my first song. It’s not that great. But I wrote it after my chaotic week and the words just sort of spilled out.

It still needs a lot of work, and I feel like I have the music in my head, my friend is just putting it to a guitar for me.

Here it is:

I ask you, “Why?

Why? Why? Oh Why?”

Have you taken such a life?

I ask you, “How?

How, Father, How?”

Can I kneel here at your throne

and let it all bleed out?

Let each beat inside,

Show you the life

That I am chasing after, Father.


I’m beautifully broken

Divinely chosen

For You, my Lord, for You, my Lord.

I’m beautifully broken,

Divinely Chosen,

For a King

Who heals all things.

Like a child, I reached up to You

You took my hand.

And You helped me stand.

I’m beautifully broken,

Divinely chosen.

For you, my Father, for you my Father.

I’m beautifully broken,

Divinely Chosen,

For a King

Who heals all things.

Heal this heart.

Hear my soul.

For you are love.

And this I declare.


You are everything and I am nothing.

You are everything and I am nothing.

You are everything and I am nothing.

I’m beautifully broken,

Divinely chosen.

For you, mere Pita, for you mere Pita.

(My father in Hindi)

I’m beautifully broken,

Divinely Chosen,

For the King

Who heals broken things.

He heals all things.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Thankful am I.

I don't know how to write this blog.
I've tried at least four times and I still haven't found the right words.
Because I don't think there will ever be the right words to say to these people.
The ones that make life worth living, refresh the soul, and hold us together after the hardest week ever.
So, I don't know what else to say, but thank you.
To you who prays for me day and night. You know who you are. I know you are on your knees for me in prayer daily and I pray that God keeps us close forever. You are my best friend.
To you who brought me oranges, cold medicine, a million romance novels, and my favorite sweets when I was feeling sick. Thank you for loving me at all times and for teaching me what friendship really looks like.
To my family in Christ, who just lost everything, but yet has given me more than I could ever begin to ask for this week. I will never forget your kindness, your hours of cooking for me, letting me mourn with you for hours but then still finding joy in the Lord at the end of the day. Thank you for remembering that mango juice is my favorite and for thinking that I am a genius for getting the 1,000 rupee question right on Who Wants to Be A Millionaire. It boosts my self-confidence.
To you who is giving thousands to the Karuna Home, just because. I still cannot believe it. One day I hope you can come and meet my babies and see what a better life you are giving to them.
To you who sneaks me chocolates everyday, just because you know it will make me smile, despite the fact that one day I will become fat because of you.
To you who reminded me about the song that no one could sing, but the 144,000 redeemed. Thank you for teaching me how to love others. I am honored to leave your legacy.
To you who sent me the book about friends, reminding me that they are my angels and when I have awful weeks they somehow find a way to preserve my spirit again (and yes, you are my best friend, Gram. You always will be :) ).

I probably have a million other thank you's that I could say.
Today I am thankful because what would life be without friends?
Even though I feel as sick as a dog, I have friends that love me very much.
And that is the best thing for your health, I think.

Thank you Jesus for friends that put band-aids on my heart when the pain comes.


Wednesday, November 3, 2010

lieutenant dan moments

natalie grace, running up the steps of our roof or the karuna home not wanting to ever miss it.

watching the sun come up and the sun go down in india.
i am overcome with peace.

and in awesome wonder.

Transforming for my destiny

Natalie's thoughts:
"I'll be happy when I figure out what I'm doing with the rest of my life."
"I'll be happy when I fall in love."
"I'l be happy when I move to India."
"I'll be happy when I get more confidence."
"I'll be happy when I get back to America and eat a slice of pizza and take a hot shower."

"When will you ever be happy if you are living like this Natalie?"

Tonight, sitting on the roof of my house, watching the sun go down and the kites flying for miles in the distance, listening to switchfoot, dragon flies buzzing around me, reflecting on the past week, and having absolutely no idea what the rest of my life has in store, I can tell you that I, Natalie Donald, am completely and absolutely happy. Even though hard things may come, I can rejoice in the fact that I know a God who painted that beautiful sunset for me and who has a plan in store for me greater than I could ever begin to imagine.

"For when you are weak, then you are strong."
2 Corinthians 12:9-10

Natalie Grace