Wednesday, March 22, 2017

ONLY THE BEGINNING(but the end of my DTS)

Hey everyone,
    Sorry for taking so long to send out an update letter! It has been a crazy few weeks trying to get settled back in to everyday life! I want to thank everyone for all your support over the past 6 months! It has been a life changing experience! I’m not sure where or how to begin to describe all that I saw and did. So please bare with me as I try to breakdown a packed schedule over the past few months into a few short paragraphs.
So to start off I want to fill everyone in on what the first few months, called lecture phase, looked like. We had lessons on various topics and then in the afternoons we would do our “duties” to help keep the base functioning well. I got blessed with the work duty of being the nanny for some of the most amazing children living on the base. On Friday evenings (or Saturday mornings?) we’d get up at 3am and go out on to the streets where women were being trafficked. We would pass out gift bags and talk to the woman. Side note it takes years of positive encounters for trafficking victims to even consider leaving life in the sex industry due to stolkholm  syndrome and many other factors.
 After the first 3 months of training we left for Greece. In Greece we did a lot of prevention work in the Refugee camps and were able to minister to the children and families. (Impoverished people are easily susceptible to trafficking). It was so challenging to see the devastation through out all of the refugee camps; many of them came from lavished lifestyles. It broke my heart to see the living conditions and not be to help everyone. It’s hard to even put into words what it was like but I would love to sit down and talk about it more but I feel that some of it is too heavy to throw around on the internet.
After a month is Greece we headed to France for a month and a half. The work there was a bit more tangible. There were many different ways we worked to end human trafficking such as awareness, giving out gift bags, and meeting with the girls! One of my favorite ministries was one that we met with girls being sold from Nigeria. They spoke English, which made it a lot easier for communication. We would go out on the streets and invite the girls to come to the local pizza shop and do a “bible study” with them (anywhere between 20-45girls show up). We were able to talk more in depth with the girls and hear many of their stories and speak value and identity into them. One girl took the help that was offered and left the streets! As I mentioned before it can take years to get those being trafficked to even view themselves as more than just an object and even begin to see themselves as valuable so this was very exciting to hear how quickly this young girl chose to leave.
My time away has deepened my desire to see an end to modern day slavery. Seeing these victims of human trafficking face to face and hearing their stories has truly set a passion in my heart. I will be continuing this work as I am planning to go back to LA in June. There I will be doing awareness and local outreaches to the woman who have fallen prey to sexual exploitation. If you would like to hear more about what I will be doing I would LOVE to meet up and talk about it!
In order to continue this work I will need to have long-term financial support. Please take time to consider helping to end human trafficking through supporting me! Even if you cannot support financially I would still love to sit down and share with you more about what I will be doing!  Thank you for all of your support!
   With much love
            Dani Cupo

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Broken but Not Forgotten

We cry when animals get beat because they can't protect themselves yet we turn the other cheek when children who can't protect themselves get beat.
Well those beaten, broken children grow up to be broken beating adults. 
This cycle of abuse has got to stop. Our hearts have got to skip a beat when we hear of yet another child being abused. Our hearts should skip a beat as we look at these grown
up children doing the only thing they were taught to do. 
These children, these grown up children are more damaged than they were as kids cause now they're doing what they swore they'd never do. 
This cycle has got to end! But where does it end? They see no end. We are the end. 
We can break this cycle. We can set them free. 
Because we can do all through Christ who strengthens thee.

     I was laying in bed and I heard what I thought was a whip and then a horse neighing and I was so upset. I was so sad that this helpless animal was being beaten but then it hit me how there are so many people who get beaten so much worse and more regularly yet we don't talk about it. Why don't we talk about it?! My theory is that it its just too painful to acknowledge. It's to scary to admit that people could do such a thing to another person but you know what's even scarier? The fact that so many of us can ignore women, children, and even men being beaten. How can we live with ourselves if we acknowledge what people go through and still do nothing about it. We can't so it's easier to just pretend that it doesnt happen. It's easier to pretend that people are not beaten and broken emotionally and physically everyday of every hour. Lets stand up for that person we see being treated unfairly, lets love deeper, lets protect more. Let's work together more. 
P.S. this was written at about 2am and inspired but God so s/o to the homie for giving me these words

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

The Living Word

Matthew 13:10-17
10Then the disciples came and said to him, “Why do you speak to them in parables?” 11And he answered them, “To you it has been given to know the secrets of the kingdom of heaven, but to them it has not been given. 12For to the one who has, more will be given, and he will have an abundance, but from the one who has not, even what he has will be taken away. 13This is why I speak to them in parables, because seeing they do not see, and hearing they do not hear, nor do they understand. 14Indeed, in their case the prophecy of Isaiah is fulfilled that says:
“‘“You will indeed hear but never understand,
and you will indeed see but never perceive.”
15For this people’s heart has grown dull,
and with their ears they can barely hear,
and their eyes they have closed,
lest they should see with their eyes
and hear with their ears
and understand with their heart
and turn, and I would heal them.’
16But blessed are your eyes, for they see, and your ears, for they hear. 17For truly, I say to you, many prophets and righteous people longed to see what you see, and did not see it, and to hear what you hear, and did not hear it.”

I’ve grownup with access to the Bible; it was never hard to find one if I looked, I grew up hearing scriptures without even wanting to but what has really hit me is how western Christians don’t realize how sacred and valuable it is to have access to the Word of God. I’ve heard the above parable and plenty others more time than I can count but my heart never heard them until just recently. The bible says it so clearly in Matthew 13:13 “You will indeed hear but never understand”. How true is that for the western world today? We read all these verses in the bible but we never take them to heart. These are Jesus words spoken to us, spoken for us so that we may know Him better. His word is there to draw us closer to Him, help us understand Him better and to help us live the life he originally intended us to live yet we throw it around (figuratively) and twist it to use it as a way to make us feel good about ourselves. I use to roll my eyes every time someone would reference a verse or I would just take the verse for face value but the bible is His living word! That means that it can speak t you, obviously not literarily but it can speak to your heart! I’ve begun to realize that there are so many people in this world that don’t have access to the bible! How can I sit around ignoring the best book ever written while others cling to any verse people will recite to them?
Another thing that has really fueled my passion for reading the bible is realizing that as you read the bible in order or at least books at a time, you are able to see the context therefore helping the words come to life and make more sense. There are too many people who manipulate the word of God to benefit them. When you start to read the full context of stories it make parables like the one above come to life! As I’ve read the word more and more I feel myself become more and more confident in who God is and also more confident in being able to call out and recognize false teachings. When people quote a piece out of a parable I can now connect where that came form and who Jesus was speaking to when he said that! It is so easy to think that the word is contradicting but when you know the context of what was happening when God said things it helps it make so much sense; it no longer seems conflicting.  

The word of God is a gift from our Father, lets appreciate it. I challenge you to pray that God will make the words come to life to you each time you open the bible and I challenge you to stick to reading one book in order for the next week. The more you read it, the more exciting it gets! I’ve been working my way through Matthew the past few weeks and it is SO MUCH FUN! I had no idea how much fun it would be when I began but as I began to see how the parables all linked up it made it so fun. I transformed from a boring old book with a bunch of rules into a book full of amazing stories and life. Once again, feel free to contact me if about any questions you have about God or even what I am doing! I pray that God uses my words to reach you and set a fire in your soul so that God can transform you!

Sunday, October 16, 2016


            So the other day I went hiking with some of my friends here at YWAM and had the craziest realization. So I wondered off on my own for a little just observing just how beautiful the mountains were when a thought popped into my mind. But before I tell you what I thought about I want you to picture your favorite place. Where do you look around and go WOW the world is so beautiful! It could be the beach, the mountains, the city, or even looking at animals, just think of something that completely awes you in nature. Ok do you have a place or thing in mind? As I’m looking around at these majestic mountains that God created I realized that God finished creating all of this and thought, “you know what this world needs? A Dani. That’s what will make this world complete.” Guess what guys!? God didn’t just think that about me, He had that same thought about you! That is just SO exciting when you let it sink in. God created this amazing world we live in and said I need you. You will make this world complete. It’s just so crazy. When that realization hit me I couldn’t stop smiling. It is just so freeing to realize that God made each of us and everything He made was good. You are good; you are loved, and cherished by the one true King! My mind is just blown and my heart is so filled with joy right now.
            I just want to go more in depth about what I mean when God said “I need a (insert your name) in this world” because I feel like so many of us instantly think about how worthless or talentless we are. Those thoughts about being unimportant are total lies. They are lies that the enemy LOVES to feed us. In Genesis 1 it goes through everything being created and after each thing was created God said it was good. That means that after he created you he said YOU ARE GOOD ! Yes we sin, yes we mess up, yes we don’t honor how great God is like we should but God still loves you and made you for a reason. Each of us were created in His image. Each of us here on earth has characteristics of God in us. Your talents, your personality, even your looks are made in Gods image.

            God also gave us free will so those talents He gave us can be misused but that doesn’t mean that you are loved less. God wants to see each of us living to our full potential but that means that we must seek Him first. Ask God to show you what He wants you to do with the gifts and abilities He gave you. It amazes me that God has created mountains, beaches, lakes, rivers, plants, animals, and so much more but He chose to make you and I because He saw the lacking in the world without each and everyone of us in it. I hope that out of everything I wrote or ever right I hope that you realize just how loved you are and how important you are no matter what you do. So I just want to finish off by saying as much as I love each of you guys, JESUS LOVES YOU MILLIONS OF TIMES MORE! His love for you is so intense that it’s actually unfathomable.

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Not Your Fairy Tale Love Story

         “Love is patient, love is kind…” I’ve lost track of how many times I’ve heard this but I don’t think I’ve ever truly understood what this means until just recently. For the past year I have been questioning what Gods love looks like for a long time but I’ve started to realize just how true that saying is. Gods love IS patient and His love IS kind. I mean God continuously took care of me and loved me for 20 years even though I didn’t want anything to do with Him. He waited for me to say I believe in you. He wanted for me to say I love you too. As He waited he didn’t stop loving me though. I use to ask why he hasn’t shown me this crazy expression of love but this past week I’ve been realizing that Gods love is not like the love we see in movies. It’s not this rollercoaster of emotions that are going from one extreme to the next. His love is truly steadfast. It’s never changing. Nothing we do can make Him love us more or less. It’s truly the most beautiful act of true love.
            Some of us may struggle with what steadfast love looks like because we’ve grown up with parents who often portray the rollercoaster love so we think that that is what Gods love looks like but it’s not. For those of you who have not been blessed with people who have shown you what true steadfast love looks like, I have hope for you. It has nothing to do with your actions, or even your earthly parents. If you want to experience a love better than any love story you have ever read or watched listen to what the bible says about Jesus love: 1 Peter 2:24 “’He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; ‘by his wounds you have been healed.’” Read that again and this time really read it. Do you realize what that is saying?! It’s saying that Jesus took on OUR sins so that we might live for HIS wounds you have been healed! I mean what greater love is that? But you know what’s even crazier than that? The fact that as Jesus died on the cross for you and I even though He knew that some of us may never accept him or that we would repeatedly reject Him yet He still chose to die for us.    
            I still cannot get over how amazing Jesus love is. I mean He already sacrificed so much for us aka His comfort in heaven next to God to show His love for us but He just loves us so much that He wanted to do more. He didn’t just die so that we can be forgiven from our sins. He died so that we can live in righteousness; so that we can be healed. That doesn’t just mean that we get to live a slightly better life in Him but we get to be FULLY HEALED. It’s so cool because God is so patient that even after He gave up his son he still patiently and lovingly waits for us to say yes to His love so that we can live fully in Him. And even after we invite Him in he is so patient that He waits to heal us until we ask because He never wants to force us to do things we don’t want to do. It’s not that his love is changing or inconsistent. It’s that his love is patient. His love is kind. He waits on us to accept His love and sacrifice. I mean just think about that. To me this kind of love sounds a heck of a lot better than the love we see in movies.

            Want to know the secret to getting this kind of love? Saying yes to God. Yup that’s it. All you have to do is say yes to Gods love and seek Him earnestly. He doesn’t just want to be your father but He wants to be your very best friend. He wants to be there for you through it all, the good, the bad, and the ugly. God wants to have a personal relationship with each and every one of us! Just invite Him in and you can even ask Him to reveal His love to you and He will. That’s how much He loves you. He is willing to show His love for you in an even more personal way even though He already showed you by allowing His son to die on the cross for you. Guys I am just so excited to realize how personal of a God I have and I just want you all to get to know Him for yourselves so that you can live in the freedom that I have found in loving Jesus Christ! If you don’t understand how to talk to God or just want to discuss anything I posted in hear feel free to contact me! I love you all and thanks for listening to my rambling thoughts!

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Missional Servant

    So not even a week in and I feel like I have learned a ton but also that there is do much information that I couldn’t even share it in a sensible order but there is something I feel led to share. I am reading the book “Making Jesus Lord” by Loren Cunningham and he talks about how we are all either missionaries or are the mission fields ourselves. In Mark 16:15 it says “He said to them, ‘Go into all the world and preach the gospel to all creation.’” Go calls all of His children to be missionaries. To go out into the world and share about His love. You’re probably reading this and like “No I’m definitely not called to be a missionary” Or “No I really don’t want to pack up my life to move to a third world country.” GOOD NEWS, that’s not what He, is calling us to do! The bible says go into the entire world…that doesn’t mean traveling somewhere to share the word or having to live in a tent and have no belongings or jobs. Nope not at all. God has a different way for each and every one of us to be missionaries. We share His love in our everyday jobs and communities by being servants to all Gods people with a joyful heart.
            Our base Director Jenny Barber has been teaching us how to serve the Lord in our everyday lives and how through that we will be able to share about our God because of the difference people will see in us. Servant-hood is not only doing the jobs that we are good at or even doing jobs we hate; it’s about doing everyday jobs we love or hate with a joyful heart because we are getting to serve our Lord. Jesus died on the cross for us. I mean he DIED a very painful death and still chose to do in joyfully because he loves us that much! If we do the little jobs like cleaning the bathrooms with delight we are still reaching those unsaved in multiple ways.
            The first way we are reaching the unsaved is that we are allowing those around us to go out and share Gods love because they aren’t stuck doing household chores when God called them to be on the streets that days. This doesn’t mean that your whole life has to be doing the dirty work so others can go out but it means that you must be willing to do the not so fun stuff when God asks you to so that He can use your humbleness with the large jobs.

The second way God can use our faithfulness in the little things for His glory is that if we do it with a joyful heart people will notice that you are picking up trash with a joyful heart and diligently…I mean guys how many times have you heard “actions speak louder than words” well then lets take action! And not just take action but also joyfully take action because when we do that we are serving our Lord Jesus Christ! How cool is that!! I mean what god says, “oh yeah I’ll take cleaning the toilets as a form of worship”? You probably cannot think of many if any. Well that’s what makes our God SOOOO special. He cares more about where our hearts than what we say or do. Please just take a few minutes to think about just HOW COOL that is! Like ahhhhhh all we have to do is chose to not grumble through our daily lives to show gratitude to God, I just cant get over how awesome that is!