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My friends are back. They went to India and they did what God asked them to do for now. They came home because God said it was time to come home and I don't know what God will ask them to do next, but I'm glad that Eric and Tisra are home.
While they were gone their pastor visited them and shot some video that I watched in the comfort of my climate controlled home. I watched and listened as Eric spoke of the trial of inconvenience and the faltering steps of ministry.
“…something comes up and all you want to do is go home and have a cheeseburger or go to a Target and pick up dental floss without having to factor in a six hour drive in both directions. …You just want that release and that relief. You know, that’s the only thing you start to think about. And you’re like I couldn’t do this, but then something happens and you go a week’s time where everything’s perfectly fine and this is the new home. It’s a non-stop roller coaster, it’s just a matter of what’s the gap between the ups and the downs.”
Tisra let the words fall and then shifted the perspective a bit,
“Because those aren’t the reasons we came. I mean, we didn’t come here because we love Indian food, or we love the heat, or we didn’t want to have Target five minutes away. We came here to serve God by loving kids that need a ton of love and so when we can pull back from all the frustrations and remember that we have a mission for being here and we get to go to these homes and fight for these kids. That’s pretty incredible. That truly our jobs are to love on and fund-raise for and make life better for a group of kids that are outcasts and forgotten and thrown away and any horrible thing you can think of. And even our children get that. Like I said, on the rough days when all six of us are in a funk together, I mean they’re young, but we have had family meetings together and said ‘this is rough, are we all still in what are the reasons we’re all still in?’ And they have faces now. And those are the reasons and even our seven year old can say, ‘well yeah, we want her to see a mom and dad.’”
I wept as I listened and shared a bit of a moment with them on video. From there I have to ask others: Why are WE HERE? Why are any of us in the church we are in, the community we live in, the school, the town, the friendships we have? Is it because we want to hoard our relationships. Do we hold them close and call them our own? Are we here because of what we want, or because of what God wants.
You may say that Eric and Tisra and their family chose the road they travelled and you aren’t choosing anything so drastic.
But you chose Christ.
You chose to bear His name and represent Him and there are so many ways to do that, but none of them involve consistent lavish comforts.
None of them include doing it your own way.
There was nothing on earth for Christ, yet he came. There was nothing here that could possibly measure up to offering Him the incredible wealth, comfort, security and convenience that He deserved as King of Kings and Lord of Lords, yet He stepped into sandals that didn’t keep out the sand, clothes that didn’t always keep out the cold, a family that didn’t keep out the embarrassing moments, friendships that didn’t keep out betrayal and finally into sin that would send Him to Hell.
He didn’t do that because in heaven everyone was talking about what a great destination Earth is and he wanted to vacation here. He was on the ultimate mission trip. The one where your souvenir is nail holes in your hands and feet. He came to fight for you and make life better for you.
Surprisingly enough, we don’t come to church because of the spa like atmosphere. I hope that it’s an enjoyable place to be, but if you’ve known Christ for more than six months, it’s time to put your big boy or girl pants on and start serving.
That doesn’t have to be leading anything either, sometimes the best thing you can do is keep your mouth shut when you don’t like something.
We don't build relationships, we don't live where we live, we aren't even born into the families we have strictly for our own pleasure. If we believe that God has a purpose for every life, than it would stand to reason that He used some reasoning in His placement plan.
Once again...it's not about you. Remember that you’re here to love. Love is a lot of things, but selfish isn’t one of them.
The funny thing is, satisfaction and fulfillment aren't a mystery. Joy isn't an intangible. It's as simple as the song we were taught in the primary department in Sunday school.
J-O-Y must be
and Others in between."
More than you are committed to the vision you have for your destiny, you must be committed to the calling to love God with all your heart soul and mind and love others as yourself. If you do that…there’s no limit to what joy will do in your life. If you do that, you will see more clearly every day the reasons you are here.
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