Conversations at midnight bring some of the most interesting and insightful perspectives.
I read a quote recently that ended with the phrase: Struggle well. I feel as of lately I have been struggling with some things in my life and wondering where this path that God has me on is leading. I've known for a very long time that I wanted to do missions work, but what kind of missions long term or short term and how to get there has been very unclear and it has been my place to wait upon the Lord to reveal these things. (I also find that its best not to act out of confusion or fear of uncertainty/not wanting to miss out etc...)
Have you seen Lincoln yet? It is a very insightful movie, although I missed the last few minutes because of a rat, there was a moment when the President asks two young men "Are we fitted to the times we are born into?" This is the time when God chose for us to live and he created us, our gifts for such a time as this.
"Did God call you specifically to long term missions?"
When the question was asked...I honestly could not say yes. I struggled...is it that I am not called for long term missions or is my heart not willing? Am I afraid? No...I know that I have been called to go, and I am willing but right now in my life I only see a small portion of the picture. What God is orchestrating right now I cannot see, but I trust in Him and his perfect timing.
T-shirt designer, photographer, painter, graphic designer, poet...these gifts don't necessarily fit into any typical ministry of a church. This is has been a struggle for me as well, not knowing where I fit in at the church because of the talents God has given however today a woman from a missionary training organization spoke to my friend and I, and she said something that reaffirmed what God was trying to speak to me "Doesn't matter where you go, your gifts go with you." She began speaking exactly what my friend and I had discussed last night in early morning hours of how if we had been born at any other time in history our gifts would have been obsolete. There is purpose in us being here now, we these gifts and there is a purpose for you too. Whatever your gifting may be, use it for the advancement of the kingdom and fulfill the purpose that God called us to: go out and share the good news of the gospel of Jesus Christ.
"What do you see yourself doing?"
Advocacy. My desire is to show the world, and Christians what it means to suffer for the name of Christ. I want to bring back stories and photographs and make the orphan in Haiti real to those who live behind the white picket fence of the American dream. My desire is that God would take these talents and refine them into instruments that share his burden for souls and awaken sleepers to the truth of persecution of our brothers and sisters. God break my heart for what breaks yours and teach me, show me, guide me instruct me in the ways in which I can pierce the heart man that our people may be awaken once again and stand for righteousness.
So I am unusual, but as I look through the Bible and read the history, I see that many of my heroes were also unusual and did not do things normally.
I leave you with this truth:
"But whatever were gains to me I now consider loss for the sake of Christ. What is more, I consider everything a loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord, for whose sake I have lost all things. I consider them garbage, that I may gain Christ..."
1. November Missions month has ended, but that doesn't mean that we as the church should not continue to be missions minded. Please continue to pray for our missionary brothers and sisters who go where God has called them to go, that they would have the support from the body of Christ that they need, and that God would continually surround them with protection and blessings, that doors would be open to them because of their willingness and faithfulness to spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ.