I wrote the following last week: I go back and forth on emotions these days. Like a see saw. One day, I’m grateful to not be overseas; grateful to be free from danger. The next day, I’m angry I’m here; angry to be sleeping in my own bed.
Each morning when I wake up, the first thought that passes through my mind is how I’m in my own bed when I’m supposed to be in a hammock halfway around the world. The thing is, I’m not supposed to be there. I’m supposed to be here. I’m meant to be in my own bed, in my own home, snug and safe. So why is it so hard each morning to rise and put a smile on my face? Why am I so sad to be in this place I call home?
I know He is sovereign, and I love how big He is. I adore knowing He cares for me, even in the giganticness of this world, He cares for me. He intricately plans and has a will for me that’s far better than anything I could come up with on my own. Knowing that, you’d think it wouldn’t be so hard to be happy and understanding. But it is. I am struggling with being here. Being in Alabama. In the United States.
I want to be in the world — I want to go and serve. I want to be a missionary where there are none. I want to share Christ with people of other cultures — people who don’t have a church on every corner — people who can’t find a church family within walking distance. But I know He is saying ‘wait.’ He wants me here for now, though I don’t yet know why. And I may never know. But He wants me here. I don’t think He wants me here forever, but He does for now. And that’s hard to swallow because I’m human and want to do things my way.
I have a heart for adventure and for people. I am a wanderer with a mostly fearless heart. All of these characteristics, He gave me. He gave me a spirit of exploration and enjoying new things. He gave me a heart for people and through His love has shown me how to love. So I know He will be faithful and use those things for my good, which will ultimately give Him glory.
He will not forsake me. He will not abandon me.
So even though my emotions are a see saw, I will struggle to trust Him — to open up to Him — to lean on Him honestly and without reservation. I will confess my hurt and pain. I will confess my confusion and my doubt. And I will ask Him to rescue me. To reach into the depths of my heart and replace the feelings of despair with feelings of joy and hope. I will be patient and spend a great amount of time on my knees. Praying seems to be the only thing that makes sense to me right now anyway.
Written on Sept. 23: Today, I am renewed. Maybe it’s because I would’ve been home today even if I had gone on my trip. Maybe it’s because after 10 days of wondering, I’ve found the peace in this situation. Regardless, I am finding joy in each day. I’ve been emailing with the missionary in the place we were headed. Each day, I pray for them and the ministry there. Being able to communicate and pray for them has connected me in a powerful way. I don’t know that it’s possible to miss someone you’ve never met or miss a place you’ve never been, but I do. My love for these people has only increased, as have my prayers.
I am thankful He’s in charge and not me. I hesitated posting the above thoughts, but they are truth. They were my reality when I returned home. Someone at church yesterday said to me, “wow, you’re handling this great; way better than I would be.” It may look like that now, but in the thick of it, I wasn’t that strong. My faith struggled, and my heart hurt. But I was reminded that faith is believing in the unseen. We don’t get to trust God only when things are good, we get to trust Him when things are tough. And that’s the most beautiful thing to me. It’s hard when you’re in the midst of the tough, but knowing what’s on the other side make the tough parts the most beautiful. My hope for you is that you see Jesus in the tough — that you feel Him in those moments. That you truly fall back into Him and trust His plan regardless of how it may seem to you.
Faith is being confident in what we hope for and being sure of what we do not see. -Hebrews 11