Just between you and me, I have to be honest, this life is HARD!!
Hearing the stories of everyone who pulls me aside to ask for advice is hard. Knowing the fears that these people live with day in and day out is hard. Feeling the urgency to pray and serve and go and help these people is hard. And feeling so inadequate, so small compared to the problems of this world, is so very hard!! Balancing these feelings with the awareness that there are people on the other side of the world who you desperately want to see and hug; not just talk through a computer screen. It's hard!
Don't get me wrong. I never expected it to be easy. I knew when I agreed to God's request to "Go" that things would change, never to be the same for me again. And I don't, even for one second, regret agreeing to His request. I can't do anything but walk in obedience to Him after all He's done in my life. I don't have a choice - not really. Disobedience to Him is just no longer an option for me. The consequences that come from walking away from Him are too much for me to bear. I can't do anything but say "Yes, Lord" knowing that He will use me and allow me to be a part of what He's doing, and ultimately to receive His abundant blessings for it.
Knowing this, however, doesn't change the fact of the day-to-day struggle to balance being filled by Him, seeking Him, soaking in Him, and at the same time giving my very best, my all, to those around me who long to be loved and valued and understood. And it doesn't change the weight on my heart for the burdens I see in the eyes of everyone I meet here, nor the pain I feel in my own heart as I wrestle with the growing pains of His continuing work in my life. It's not easy.
Living outside of myself and my own comforts is not meant to be easy. Walking in the mindset of the eternal, and not the present, is not meant to be easy. Keeping my mind and heart focused on someone other than myself is not meant to be easy. But we were not called to live an easy life. In fact, we as Christians were called to live an obedient life. God does not promise us comfort this side of Heaven. But He promises us protection and provision and unending love and blessings. The thing we forget is that the promises are fulfilled in the storms. Jesus's life was not an easy one by anyone's standards. But it was a blessed one because He constantly walked through the storms in faith and assurance of who held Him, who He served, who He sought to please. The same can be said of every one in the Bible who served Him. Life is not easy, no matter what the media tells you. And it's not mean to be, not since The Fall. But it's meant to be so much more than "easy" or "comfortable".
I long to live this life with the same unwavering focus that the mighty men and women of scripture walked with. So I lay aside my desire to be comfortable: for life to be easy and smooth. I know He has more for me in this life than just to be "comfortable." And I want more from this life than it has to offer me. Only He can fill the desires in my heart, the cravings of my very soul. So I surrender, once again, my need to feel in control, or my need to feel prepared, or my earthly need to feel serene. And I face tomorrow again, regardless of how hard it may be, with the understanding that I don't walk it alone. I walk in His truths, His promises, His very being. And I accept the "hard" knowing that it draws me closer to Him and more reliant on Him in each and every moment.
Thank You, Lord, for the hard. Thank You, Lord, for the past hardships that You used to prepare me for the here and now. Thank You, Lord, for never, not even for a second, leaving me in the storms. You are what keeps me moving, keeps me giving, keeps me loving and walking forward. You have so much more for me than this world. And I am eager to see what You'll do in this hardship. For Your glory I will live this life. Have Your way, Lord. Have Your way!