The last few days the battle has felt too much – too hard. The needs are too big. My heart is too heavy. My eyes cry too much. The sacrifices are too great. The road is too bumpy. The children are too hungry. The weak are too sick. The chains are too tight. The nights are too long. The days….too overwhelming.
I was talking with some of the mission employees yesterday. Some days I feel like I’m in my own little prison. If I stand at the top of my stairs – there are dozens below – waiting for me. Hoping to get their chance to talk to me about their latest problem. Praying there is some way I can help them. They’ll wait all day – holding out for the hope I’ll acknowledge them today.
Yesterday I decided to work in my office for the morning. One after another – no less than 9 people came to me asking me how could I just leave them? With tears in their eyes they could not understand. Did they not show me their love when they ran and met me at the gate entrance to St. Louis after being gone for so long? Did I not see that they were my family? How could I leave family behind? Can’t I take them with me?
Pics of our warm reception after being gone 9 months to have the twins:
Aww…. it’s a lot. Makes me not want to go outside. Am I wrong for going? Am I abandoning them? Am I letting everyone down? IS THE TIMING OFF?
I have been studying about Abraham. I’ve been drawing some of my strength from his story. Because not only does Abraham have a history of faith, but his life also reveals some serious bouts of doubt and some remarkably foolish decisions. It gives me hope because no matter what our track record of doubt is and all those foolish things we have done in the past – – we can still give God an opportunity to testify to our faith.
Abraham was headed somewhere – but he actually didn’t know where. He had accepted to go without ever seeing. Jose and I did the same thing. We were called to the Mole before ever seeing it. So I’ve really been trying to learn from Abraham and about GOD’S TIMING.
Beth Moore says:
The command given to Abraham (from KJV) is GET THEE OUT OF THY COUNTRY.
What that’s saying to us is: GET THEE OUT OF THY COMFORT ZONE. (AMEN).
Time can test almost anything and undoubtedly anyone. In fact, obeying God can initially seem to get us in a bigger mess than we left. (I certainly feel this way sometimes).
We can be in the bull’s-eye of God’s will for our lives, and things make utterly no since until the ugly, five-letter word – LATER. Obey Now and Ask Later. (Aww….this is what I’m trying to learn. The people here in ST. Louis have a LATER coming to them – me too).
We often say: Time heals. (I tell the people here that in time – it will all be okay). Yet I’ve known just as many whom time embittered. Only God heals. Only God restores. Only God effectively prepares, equips, and matures. (Amen. I get it).
Our lives are built on the faithfulness of the believing generations before us, and those after us will build on ours. Our ego says: If I don’t do the planting, sowing, growing, and harvesting it won’t get done. We’re mistaken. (Okay – this is me. I think I have to be all things to all people. That if I leave – my family/friends in St. Louis won’t be taken care of. As if God isn’t big enough).
As much as we’d like to think otherwise we just have one little piece, and our faithfulness with that one piece is paramount. Time is often where he tempers and tests us so that premature births of ministries don’t result in lifelong handicaps. God created time and never wastes it.
What I’m learning is that God’s timing is always perfect. He knows the way everything will play out. If He calls me to go somewhere then He will replace me when I’m gone. If I get to the Mole and I have all these ideas about what to do – and it doesn’t work – INSTEAD of getting frustrated – maybe I should accept that God is trying to prevent a lifelong thorn. I never thought about it like that before. Have you?
One thing I know is that God has been speaking to me. He does it in many ways but only when I take time out to listen. I haven’t had time to talk with him over the last few days. The result: a doubting, depression. God is NOT okay with me ignoring Him.
My brother teases me and says my blogs are bi-polar. I’m up and I’m down. One minute I’m on the mountain and the next minute in the pit. You know what- that’s just life. Well -maybe it’s just my life!! LOL! I probably write a few times when I shouldn’t – but writing is therapeutic for me. One thing I notice though – on the blogs where I am down – a lot of times it’s on a day where I didn’t really listen for God.
The world will not stop and our true God-ordained ministries will not end when we take the time to let God make us healthier and better equipped. No wonder He goes to such lengths and depths to prepare us as much as we’ll permit him.
He knows our insecurities, our doubts, and our uncertainties. He knows mine very well. If God has granted you several reconfirmations of His direction, persevere and walk with Him there – even if the full purpose eludes you. Have the faith to Obey Now and Ask Later. He will send someone to harvest while we go elsewhere to plant. Seems so simple doesn’t it? (Yeah…not always).
One thing I do know: He knows what He’s doing. So while the battle feels too much – TODAY – I persevere….
Categories: Mission Stories, NW_Personal Ministry Update, Personal Stories
Every time I read your blog I’m left with this amazing insight into your world. You inspire me in my walk and the direction I believe God is calling me. Thank you for writing (even when you think you shouldn’t). I always walk away with something…
I don’t think you’re the only one who feels those ups and downs. It’s all of us. Seeing you go through them only shows us how human you are – even though some days your work seems too mighty for any of us to ever measure up to.
God has given you a talent. He has given you a heart for the people. As you learn from Abraham – I learn from you.
Jody, you bless me with every blog you write. I, too, struggle with being human 🙂 and the down days are definitely the pits…that’s why negative circumstances are called the “pits”, one is down in the dark, dank, lightless pit. But when we come back out, doesn’t the sun seem to shine even brighter? When I turn to God from the pit and start praising his attributes, it seems He snaps His almighty fingers and I’ve climbed back out again. I hope and pray this helps you on those “special” days. P.S. I met Janeil at the Feed My Starving Children partner conference in January. Please greet him for me.
I always appreciate you just laying it out there for us. It lets us know how to pray. I hadn’t thought about your reception back there since September. You are certainly a very important family member for them. I know tomorrow night you will be speaking with everyone about leaving. Praying for you and your speech tomorrow night.
Jody you are God’s mighty warrior. He will continue to give you strength. Your posts continue to give me some.
Love you girl! Love hearing about your day to day and how God is moving.