Tuesday, October 23, 2012

The Uprooting :: Golden Threads for the Journey {Part 7}

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It is true to say that I’m learning about the things that I would never choose for myself.

Oh how my heart, my identity, my sense of self-assurance craves comfort.  I want {right now} a life that exudes confidence.  I want a life with friends already made right here.  I want a life where what is convenient is readily available. I want. I want. Oh, how I want…

But this is only one side of the story.  Long ago and in the re-commitment needed to walk ahead I continue to choose to lay down what I want on the surface of things and what the fleshy front of my heart craves insatiably.

It is true.  I staked my claim long ago to invest in eternal things at the sacrifice of comfort, convenience or an easy life.  But the reality is that that is never intended to be a once-in-time event.

No, the way of the Master who guides this journey, my journey, reaches far deeper and extends far more intricately into the stuff, the marrow, the life-giving blood pumping breath needed to sustain me.

And I am learning that there is only one place that will take me further.  It is a place of humility and surrender.  It is a place of continually realizing all I cannot do in my own strength.  It is an embracing and never-letting-go of this next thread ::

It is only in a journey that brings me face-to-face with my weakness that I can truly become strong.

On Sunday, our pastor opened up a dear and true passage with a dear and true truth.

2 Corinthians 12:9

 But he said to me,

“My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.”

Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me...

For when I am weak, then I am strong.

He spoke of this being the pinnacle of this entire letter to the Corinthians.  And I would say, too, that it is the pinnacle of this journey in moving overseas, in learning a whole new life, in rendering as my own the calling of stranger and alien in this world.

I cannot hope to serve Him in this life if I am unwilling to face my utter weakness. 

Some things are circumstantial...like having a baby a mere six months after moving overseas.

Some things are personality…like never having been the daring kind, the one to ‘just do it’ but having that oh-so-often, oh-so-timid heart.

Some things are are part and parcel of the missionary call…like being the odd ball, the newcomer, the stranger in a foreign land.

But no matter the origin, all of this means that I can not take very many steps ahead without slamming into that wall of my own weakness.  There is not the comfort of success in new endeavors, at least not yet.  All that seems to loom most days is the overwhelming reality of all yet to be learned, tackled, surmounted.

I have ranted and raved and questioned only to land squarely back on the truth that I have been called.  It does not matter that I am fairly certain there are MANY others who could do this life better.  It doesn’t matter that on the standards of this world, the failures have likely been many in a few months time.  And it doesn’t matter that most of the time I think I am quite useless.  It doesn’t matter in the sense that I should doubt my, our, calling.  Rather it is an affirmation of the hand of an All-Wise Loving Heavenly Father guiding each step of my life.

He knows the thoughts that would defeat and meets me in them if I but keep a heart open to Him.  He knows I am weary and it is hard.  He lavishes compassion and assurance even as He reminds that this is the only way to become strong.  This is the only way to exude the power of Christ.

He has never been the One who calls the strong…the most obvious choice.  Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, Rahab, Ruth, David, Mary, Peter and so many more remind me of His ways.  The Bible bears the story of the broken who were called to a life far outside of comfort where their weakness was that ever pressing mountain to climb.  The broken, the weary, yet the faithful who in their myriad failures turned to the Only One who could truly meet them.  truly heal.  truly make their lives something beautiful.

He knows, friends, He knows.  He sees.  He cares.  And all that makes you weak bears a surpassing greatness that far outweighs your weakness.  Don’t lose heart.  Don’t give up.  And know, with me, the glorious company that you keep.  It spans time and this valley of tears with Heaven and our heart’s desire as that indestructible Forever Prize.





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