Sunday, April 15, 2012


I wasn't sure what to blog about tonight so I posed that question on facebook.

P4150410 Elysa, computer, blog resized

In response to my query " Hmmm...what to blog about......?" I got several suggestions which finally culminated in someone combining suggestions to form the African Aardvark Advocates of America.

Oh my. I do have funny friends.

But in all honesty, it wasn't that I didn't have anything going on in my mind. I just have so much going on in my mind --- and heart --- that the thought of trying to put down into a not-too-long post just seemed a bit overwhelming.

I still don't know if I'm up to writing about it. So I guess I ramble a bit. I could even dress it up with a high falutin' literary term and call it stream of consciousness.

But mostly, I'm just feeling...gosh, what am I feeling? Sad? Excited? Unworthy? Blessed?

I guess all those things.

I see so many people who have woken up to their calling. I see missionaries and local folks who have realized that the purpose of their life is so much more than just getting by or striving for personal success and excellence. I read about people who have been willing to give it all to follow the will of God.

And that stirs up a slurry of emotions and thoughts.

I feel excitement and blessing over what God is doing in our family and how He is using us. I also feel conviction because sometimes people hold us up as an example of people who are willing to give it all yet I know I still hold so much back.

I'm often still so very selfish and lazy and mean-spirited. I often do not want to go out of my way to minister. I still worry about what other people will say and don't want to make waves. I often let mu fears of personal safety or even fear of messy people hold me back from radically following Him.

Part of me wants to be completely extravagant with my life, my gifts, my everything. Part of me just doesn't want to.

But I want to want to!

I read stories about heroes of the faith and missionaries who God has used in unimaginable ways and I want to be like them. I want to truly surrender it all for the sake of the call. But sometimes it is a lot more appealing to my flesh, my selfish desires, my "me-ness" to just play it safe. Do nice, non-scary advocating for African aardvarks in America.

Today, Larry Pate preached at church about the call God is giving our church. We come together to worship and learn and fellowship. Those are all part of being church. But we're not supposed to get free and get better just so we can be free and be better. We're supposed to be about them.

We're supposed to be about those who are in need of love and truth and rescue.

We are not supposed to live our life so wrapped up in the mundane of every day life that we shut ourselves off from those God calls us to serve. We can't be so focused on "me and mine" that we forget to look for those God wants us to see.

Betty Hodge camera resized

We need to be intentional about our living. When we shop and when we party and when we work, we should always be not just open but looking for those around us who need the Lord.

Sometimes, that means that we might need to let go of some "good" stuff in our life so we have more time to open our lives up to those God sends our way. Sometimes that means we need to take a few unfamiliar paths so that we might meet those who would not normally touch our lives. Sometimes it might even mean some major life changes...even if just for a season.

It all starts with love, though. When we really, really grasp how much God loves us, then we're going to find ourselves loving others more and more. And as we start acting on that love, a spiritual snow ball begins to happen. The more we love, the more we give and the more we serve and the more we go. And the more we give and the more we serve and the more we go, the more we love. And on and on it goes.

David Sills, in the book “The Missionary Call”, says ---

"When you love the Lord, you long to glorify Him and see the nations fall at His feet in worship. When you love your neighbor as yourself, you share the gospel with him and seek to meet his needs in every way you can, which includes seeing him fall at Jesus' feet in thanksgiving for salvation."

I want to love the Lord that way. I want the desire to glorify Him and love others to be so great that I will freely give it all to Him, not seeing it as sacrifice, but as a blessed honor.

I'm not there yet, but I pray God gives me the grace to be there one day.

In the meantime, I'm so thankful that He chooses to use me despite my inadequacies anyway.

And He chooses to use you, too.

By the way, I guess that "stream of consciousness" thing worked.

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