What does that mean? If you remember, last year God gave me the word PRAYER for 2014. And what a year it was! He spoke so clearly, was so awe-inspiring, and allowed me to fall at His feet and worship at His provision, His patience with us and His forming of our family.
This year, I prayed and prayed for a word. I wanted this experience again. I wanted to know Him deeper, trust Him fuller. But I didn’t hear right away. This was partially my fault, I had some unconfessed sin at the beginning of the year that I needed to lay at His feet and ask forgiveness for. And as always, He is a grace-filled God who welcomes us into His presence. So, as we started the new year, new school semester, new season as a family of 6 home from Uganda, and new activities, this one word kept coming up…FAITH (side note, I just turned on iTunes radio and the first song is Give Me Faith…..subtle).
It is seemingly everywhere. Our adult bible study class is studying Hebrews right now. A chapter a week. It has been soothing to my soul. My daughter, C – who is 8, earned a solo in our children’s choir/drama musical this spring. It’s about Hebrews – the hall of faith. I have this CD playing in my house 24/7. Also, I exaggerate occasionally.
I listened in from afar for the IF:Gathering in February. The topic: Faith. God has walked with me through an Easter study and showed me the faith of the disciples, and more importantly, the faith of the Son of Man, Jesus.
I said yes, Lord, send me!
I have supported Kirabo Seeds, an orphanage in Uganda, since it started. First by helping connect the people who started it with accounting help that could set up their 501(c)3. We sponsor a child. I visited in July 2012 and our family spent much time with the staff and children while we were in country for 12+ weeks last fall. I love to do little fundraisers throughout the year personally and through our homeschool co-op currently. Even while we were there this fall, knowing that we’d have to go home and get Judah settled, I still prayed fervently that Eric would feel the call. The call to GO and serve. The call to move for a time and pour out for these beautiful people. But Eric didn’t. He considered it, prayed deep about it, but still didn’t think it was for us, for NOW.
But, a fire did ignite in my husband. He is pursuing ministry now. He feels confident in this. Three school years have completed, and each summer we know God is calling us to different, to MORE of Him, but we were unsure what. Corporate world? Career change? Nope, ministry. This is the most excited I’ve seen him. He’s applying to seminary. He’s applying at various openings where he could serve. We know God will provide, the question is where and when! He is faithful in studying God’s word, fasting and praying about what the future of our family and his ministry might look like.
But me? I’m trying to help. To be supportive. But I’m a little overwhelmed. And underwhelmed. Overwhelmed with my task. God has said: stay. Breathe life into these children I’ve given you. Homeschool well. Serve your husband. It’s his turn to run with abandon at what I have for him. That is hard. If you see me most days and ask how I’m doing, my answer is “well, I’m here.” I don’t know when my joy turned into this. I feel like I’ve lost it. I feel like I’m not enough. I feel like the Lord has called me to say no and step away from things I was doing, and still, why am I overwhelmed? I don’t want to be busy for busy’s sake.
And yet I’m underwhelmed at my task. That’s it? Throughout this faith journey I feel like God has ignited a passion in me for missions. And yes, for Ugandan missions. First, I thought we would be the missionary family for Kirabo Seeds. But, they have hired someone for that and we weren’t a consideration. Turns out, its our adoption lawyer stateside! (Follow their journey here). We are extremely excited for them, but Lord knows how much I wanted to go. I speak with the staff there and grieve that I won’t see them daily in the foreseeable future.
In my prayer time the Lord has given me this vision of the future. A non-profit started to serve women in Uganda. To pay them a fair wage for their beautiful creations (jewelry, baskets, mats, etc) and create for them a market here in the states. Because if you serve the women in this way, the children get to go to school, get good food, get a way to step out of extreme poverty. They are already making these hand-crafted beautiful creations, yet not getting paid for their time because us mzungus want a good deal when we go.
I also want to serve the young women and girls who skip school when they have their monthly cycle, because they can’t afford or don’t have access to feminine products! A simple $20-$30 diva cup would solve this issue. I know from Tonya that one of the girls at the home has missed a test because she was on her cycle. Can you imagine? She is an extremely bright girl that will do great things for the Lord; would you want a normal thing like her period to hold her back? I know I wouldn’t! And that’s the difference between our world and theirs. Things we don’t even consider to be ‘issues’ are major!
I also can see our family running a guest house, giving missionary families some respite time and rejuvenation. Hosting some tourists. Serving missionary teams. Heck, if we’re being real honest, I’d love to coordinate teams to serve, but there can be so much flack involved with short term mission trips. I would want to form and BUILD (continually) relationships. I don’t want to go to take work away from able people who need the work. I want to serve them spiritually (not that Americans know more, believe me), minister to them, engage with them to know Jesus deeper, better. Because He who promised IS FAITHFUL.
Now that you have a glimpse into my head, you see my dilemma. There are so many good things here. So many ideas and visions that I believe God gave me. But, God. His timing. His priorities. Not just for me, for the women there, but for my family here too. I turned down a trip to Rwanda this summer though I desperately wanted to go. Judah’s first mom was from that beautiful country and I do want to go at least once to experience the beauty. But God said not now. Eric was willing and able, but with everything up in the air, we felt I should stay home, and I’m (getting) okay with that. But I want to keep this fire. I want to know the future (who doesn’t). I want to serve. And God keeps telling me to have Faith.
For me, when I think of those that have big faith, I think of Abraham (who left his land and followed the Lord; who was blessed to be a blessing), I think of Moses (who again left what he knew, only to be called back to serve and not get to enter the promised land), Joseph (who was sold into slavery yet knew God had given him a vision that his brothers would bow down to him), Esther (who could have been killed at any moment and was still faithful to that possible end in serving her people, the Jews). I think of the big things. But, do I think of the 80 year old lady on the prayer team who is faithful in prayer and never left Katy? Do I consider the mom who prayed and prayed for her special needs son and relied fully on God’s strength to parent, when it took all of her. Do I consider the small that is not small at all in God’s eyes?
Do I remember that God called me to start this blog to share our faith journey? Do I remember that I am not to have faith in my abilities or passions, but in GOD. In His love not just for me, but all the people on this earth. Do I have faith that He will provide for whatever path He pushes us down. Do I have faith that I can remain faithful to prayer and discipleship? Not at all unless I am completely having to rely on Him and His word and strength, much like my time in Uganda this fall. Do I believe God gives periods of rest? Absolutely! So why can’t I enjoy mine currently?
So here we are again. I have faith that my God is trustworthy. That He is lovely. That HE IS WORTHY of any and all calls on our life. Break my heart for what breaks yours Lord.