I am not really sure what to write but I just feel a need to connect with everyone “out there”. I had this really great opportunity today to spend some extra time with the Lord. Typically, my day starts with some early morning time with God but, once the kids come downstairs I am pretty consumed with my motherly-duties until they go back to bed in the evening. Today however, two wonderful young ladies came over to play with the kids and I was afforded some extra free-time. I had assumed I would use that time to clean up the house and prepare for our upcoming move to Maryland. I came down to our basement to assess the situation and continue our household purge-and-pack. As I began working, I felt the need to spend some extra time with the Lord. Our current situation: no steady work with bills coming in over the next week, packing our home to move without a set moving date, five kiddos to teach and love, friends and family to connect with before we leave Maine, and all of the pressing questions about our future in ministry, was driving me to find shelter with my Heavenly Father. As I have said, we’ve been through times like this before. I was listening to Beth Moore speak once and she said that God always wants us to get an “A” on the tests He gives us. Sometimes, He will keep giving us the test until we get that “A”. I chuckle to myself thinking about a math class that I took in college 4 times. That is pretty pathetic I know! I told Jeremy this story just yesterday. The first time I took the course, I got an “F”, second time a “D”, third time a “C”. I know I could have stopped after the third time but, I really wanted that “A”. So, I paid for that class… again. Finally, I got my “A”. I relate that back to my walk with the Lord, there are certain areas where I have gotten an “F” a few times. When there is no money coming in and a mountain of things to get done; it seems impossible. That is when I struggle the most. I get impatient with my husband and children and then eventually with God. Well, this time, I am going to get an “A” from my Master Teacher. I am just running to Him over and over. I keep asking Him for the answers and trusting in what He is telling me to do. Some days, everything seems to just flow as I worship Him all day with my children. Other days, it is one step at a time: “Lord, I know you are in this, help me to trust You while I make my coffee”, “Lord, I love you, help me to trust You while I get the kids up”, “Lord, I am really messing up here, forgive me and help me to trust You while I talk to Jeremy”.
So, a few weeks ago, Jeremy and I submitted applications to Iris Global Ministry’s Harvest School of Missions in Pemba, Mozambique. God asked us to put in our applications and we obeyed. We haven’t heard back if we are accepted yet and we trust the Lord with the result either way. For me, so much fruit has come out of just applying. At first, my response was that we just aren’t ready yet. We are not rolling in the dough, if you know what I mean; our kids are too young, our faith is too small, I don’t even have a college degree, we just aren’t qualified. Our friends have echoed those concerns. So, today, while sitting in my basement (not getting anything I planned done) I asked God “Why would I even want to go to Africa?” Why? Why go so far away to a bunch of people that speak a different language and eat different food and might not even want us there? I felt in my deepest place, God speak “because of love”. Not a feeling love but, a doing love. I look at the last year of my life and think of all the ways I could have loved the people around me better. I could have done more. Who am I to speak of this love? I realize that as I sit here, I only know a small taste of this love. I have only seen a glimmer of what my heart tells me of God’s love. When I ask God, why do I want to go? He reminds me of the love I had for my children before they were born. I loved Emilia, even though I didn’t know her, I loved her. I longed to hold her and care for her. I had no experience that could prepare me for being her mother but, I did have a love planted inside of me before I even met her. Our pastor has been teaching on love each Sunday and posting about God’s love on Facebook. This has pushed me to look at myself and then at God and then back at myself, realizing how much more I need to press into Him so I can love like Him. I am far from a Biblical scholar and am not saying that my understanding is perfect but, this is what God has revealed to me this week. The love God wants me to have is agape – I have heard about this love my whole life growing up in church. Jesus uses this word “agape” in John chapter 15 saying “Greater love (agape) has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends”. From there, agape is used in the rest of the New Testament to describe what should be flowing out of our lives to one another (from Christian to Christian and from Christian to non-Christian). This love that is shown by laying down one’s life, is the love I should be giving to everyone. I knew as I carried my first born daughter in my womb, that I would give my life for her. She was worth the price. I can feel in my heart that the lives we will go to Africa to save, are worth giving my life away. However, I have realized this week that I have missed the people right in front of me. Am I willing to give up my life, my rights, my reputation, my opinion, my comforts, my energy, my money for my husband, children, friends, family and neighbors? I know I have gotten an “F”, then maybe a “D” or even a “C”, but, I want an “A”.
If you want to view our application video, click here
If you have any questions about us going to Mozambique, you can email us at firstname.lastname@example.org