"For so the Lord has commanded us, saying, 'I have made you a light for the Gentiles, that you may bring salvation to the ends of the earth.' And when the Gentiles heard this, they began rejoicing and glorifying the word of the Lord, and as many as were appointed to eternal life believed. And the word of the Lord was spreading throughout the whole region."
It was just a few months ago that I was sitting in church, listening to the announcements, when something caught my attention. Our church was looking for a team to be sent to Ecuador in July 2017. This is a yearly routine at the church I attend, and normally I thank the Lord for those brave enough to volunteer, and that's that. This year, though, as our pastor spoke of this opportunity, I was insistent that my husband, Sam, should most definitely go!
For a few weeks I nagged him and made him send in the e-mail saying he was interested, and then when it came time that the team needed some true commitment, Sam said "I don't think I really want to do this. why don't you go?" .....Crickets chirping.....Me? I have to be honest that the first thing holding me back was that others would look down on me for leaving my kids and husband for a week, 'cause hey, doesn't a "good" Christian wife send her husband off to do things like this?! God quickly revealed to me that he is not picky about who spreads the gospel, and that actually my situation of being a stay at home mom made me uniquely available to this opportunity. So I put my "yes" in Him and committed!
A year ago I was talking to a sweet friend (Kaitlin!) after she had just informed me she was going on the Ecuador trip. I was in awe of her bravery and how simple she made it seem to just pick up and go as the Lord called her to do. I remember saying something along the lines of " I can't ever see myself going on a mission trip. I don't have a strong theological background, or the means to 'convince' people of Jesus." I remember this conversation and my fears so clearly, but I had it all wrong! God has shown me that it's not about how much you know, but rather how much you love Jesus with all your heart, mind, and soul. He supplies the rest as you grow in relationship with Him! I am no longer afraid, because I know HE will equip me to touch lives and love on people who have never known the love of Jesus, it's not about 'me' at all.
The Lord has supplied, abundantly, to make this trip possible for me. Friends and family far and near have donated generously, a hiccup in my passport application was corrected quickly, and my in laws even agreed to come watch the kids so that Sam wouldn't miss any work. I am extremely grateful all around! The Lord has been strengthening my heart each time I read scripture, and I am clinging to His promises for the various anxieties I carry.
Now, at just 4 days from departing, I can only ask of your prayers. Pray for each of our hearts, that we would joyfully accept whatever the Lord has for us in Ecuador, and that He would unite us as a team for His glory. Pray that there would be more of Him and less of us (John 3:30). And lastly, pray that My in laws don't despise me too much after wrangling our two toddlers for a week ;)
Until next time,