Monday, February 20, 2012

when there’s no turning back

It’s a good place to be.  The place of no-turning-back.  But it is NOT a comfortable place and as we grow we learn that the truly good things that last forever come in the risk. the fire. the surrender.

These words that were a part of the sermon text on Sunday have always been a balm for my soul::

So Jesus said to the Twelve, “Do you want to go away as well?”  Simon Peter answered him, “Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life, and we have believed, and have come to know, that you are the Holy One of God.”

~John 6: 67-69

I feel the heart beat and passion of Peter knowing that they have staked their all on THIS ONE. THIS JESUS.  This statement comes on the heals of many of Jesus’ followers deserting Him after he has told them that they must eat his flesh and drink his blood.  It was apparently too much, too all-out, too incomprehensible for many.  And so they left, but the twelve remained.

The better part of humility and perspective knows that I live in a different time and the sacrifices that we are making to stay the course and move overseas are far less than all that those first followers faced.  But I also embrace the ache of my heart as it resonates with a full knowledge that there is no other path and NO OTHER ONE on whom to fix my gaze and tune my soul.

And so I thank Him for the awesome privilege of having a path of obedience so clearly defined.  In this season of waiting as we run the final leg of this part of our race and prepare to embark on a complete life change, I have been tempted to look at many things. 

The endless unknowns of how I will adjust to life in Budapest.

The fears of my gaping inadequacies to do any of it well.

The roiling emotions of the permanency of our commitment.  {We will not return in six months, a year or five.  We are on his timetable and if we serve overseas until we die, then, Praise Him.}

But He reminds me that LIFE is where it has always been.  In Him.  Abiding in Him.  Feasting on Him with the full counsel of His Word as to what that means.

So gentle and so kind and so patient, He is.  Calming my fears with the truth of His Grace and that it is always one step, one moment at a time.  And filling my heart with thanks that the things I face beg the same question He asked the disciples.  Will I go away?  Will I turn back because it is just too hard?  Will I pursue this path ahead with my own willpower and strength?

And even before the question comes I know the answer echoes Peter’s.

Oh LORD, where else can I go?  You ALONE have the words of life.  I thank You that there is NO turning back.   I thank You that You have given my life purpose that can only be fulfilled by Your Strength.  Your Life flowing through me.  And I ask You to keep me on this full-out path all of my days, wherever I am, whatever you call me to do until I am Home forever in Your Arms.  Amen & Amen

{Ever since we sang this song during our overseas training last summer and I joined the voices of many going all around the world, many to places where it is forbidden to preach the Gospel, it has transported me to a place of passion and purpose that I share with all who embrace the path of no-turning-back.

I have dubbed it The Missionary Anthem.  I hope it encourages and challenges you!}

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