Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Along the Path to Friendship

These past 2 weeks have been an accumulation of emotion, elation, determination and friends. I entered into the world of missions a loner, and honestly...I liked it that way. On my own I was responsible for no one else but me. That way if things weren't what I expected, well that would be that. God had different plans for my life these past weeks though.

A funny fact about me is that I really enjoy being alone. I mean, I own a business for the sheer fact that I do not like working for/with people! I don't do meetings and I honestly do prefer text and email over phone calls and face-to-face. I have never been accused of being a socialite. Now, I can behave myself in social occasions and I do clean up well :), but I prefer the solitude of my own office and gym as opposed to the hustle and bustle of the outside world. My husband is well aware of all these facts, so when I came to him with the call to travel around the world...with people I don't even know...he knew it wasn't my idea.

God requires one thing from us: OBEDIENCE. It seems like such a small word for what it actually implies. I mean, we get obedience. Our parents told us we should obey and we tell our children the same thing...but obedience to the Father can look and feel quite different. Our parents tell us, "Don't run with scissors or you'll poke your eye out". God says, "Set aside your fears and run with Me." Mom tells us, "Don't touch the stove, it's hot." God says, "Endure the fires of the world for Me Name." My dad told me, "Be careful who you trust." God says, "Trust in ME to lead you where you must go for My name." My own heart says, "Be careful what you wish for." God says, "There is nothing you posses that I did not give you." He required me to get on 3 different flights, meet people I did not know, share my life with these people...and come back completely changed.

Leading up to the time the first flight left the ground, I had doubts. Literally, until then... I doubted my abilities. I doubted God's calling. What if I had heard Him wrong? What if He was actually speaking to the person NEXT to me and the wires got crossed?!?!? What if I was awful? What if I really had nothing to offer? These were thoughts clouding my head as I strained to hear my boarding group called. I honestly thought I could simply slip away and consider my trip payment a donation. The problem was I had been slipping away for over 30 years. He required my full obedience, and since it truly is ALL I have to offer, I had better offer it up good :)

So what happens when you really do simply obey? Well, I'm glad you asked. What I had to offer wasn't much BUT what God had to offer through me was HUGE. I left with more friends (the real kind, not just the ones who you call friend) than I have EVER had. I lived life with people. I got my hands dirty and immersed myself fully in a culture that could teach Americans a thing or two. Like the Grinch, I believe my heart grew a few sizes that week. I was refreshed and revived in my Spirit, anew in my calling. I left with a clearer vision of my purpose than I had ever had before. Why? All because I chose to OBEY. I received infinitely more than I could ever give, which is exactly what God promises in His word.

The biggest treasures I received were the friends who now have a permanent place in my heart (whether they want to or not). I will remain forever changed and forever grateful for these experiences that were allowed due to my simple obedience. What on this earth is holding you back today?

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