Jessica Warren is a beautiful sunflower of a woman that God has planted deep in the heart of inner-city Jackson. There, and everywhere she goes around the world, she brings joy and brightness and love.
Soon, she's leaving us at the We Will Go family to move to Hondorus where she will minister. As she prepares for this change, she's had a lot to reflect on. The calling as a missionary is one of these things. I love what she had to say about this on her blog and wanted to share it here at Graceland.
YOU WANT ME TO BE WHAT? By Jessica Warren
Missionary… Growing up in a small town and conservative church, the only thing I knew about missionaries were cutting their picture out of the ”Gleaner” magazine, or having them as a guest speaker at a church. I remember growing up and praying, “Dear Lord Jesus! Please don’t send me to Africa or another continent! ” In fact, I was so ignorant to think that missionaries only came from homeschooled parents, and they never sinned (perfect people). The biggest myth was the mission field was easy work! Fast forward a few years, and God has not only got me selling everything, packing up, and moving to another continent, He has placed me on training ground to teach me I’m a missionary everyday of my life!
Praise Jesus for His patience and grace during those years! I love when reality sets a place in my journey of walking my life out with Jesus! These are some truths I am learning in this transition of my journey:
1) Single women can be missionaries! God wants to use ANYONE who is willing! God is teaching me that you don’t have to have a religion degree to be called to a big destiny! In fact, each person God created is made for a huge destiny, but we must be willing to say, “Lord, I want you to use me!” I truly give you Lordship over my life, my heart, my mind, my soul, my strength.! I give you everything!” AND WALK THAT OUT!! unfortunately, this is where many people stop and do not pray such an extravagant prayer because the cost is too high. My Jesus warned me that the cost would be high, but the product of obedience is extravagant! Yes, sign me up for that promise please!
2) Missionaries do not have to be perfect! Praise Jesus for this one! I am a divorced woman who satan has repeatedly told me that I am worthless and screwed everything up, so I must settle for an ordinary life. The Truth my Father says is, “You have fallen short of my glory, but in your weakness, I want to show my strength! I want to still give you the best!! My love for you is unconditional and your weaknesses does not alter my decision in the huge destiny I have planned for you Daughter!” Missionaries do not have more access to the throne room, mastered the keys to a successful Christian Walk, or never walk through hardships! Missionaries are ordinary people who loves Jesus a whole a lot and wants everything He has to offer, no matter the cost! I’ll take seconds of that please!!!
3) Missionaries still deal with everyday struggles of the real world. There are still bills to pay, calls to make, emails to answer, clothes to wash, crying children, groceries to buy, stressful moments, headaches, backaches… Loving the unlovable…. Laying down selfish desires, wanting to go workout instead of deal with people, running far away from situations only to face it dead in the face at your next destination, forgiving people who has ripped your heart out…. Should I go on? Ok… People constantly telling you that you are crazy for moving to another country; you will never get the financial support; how are you going to support yourself when you get back; God gave you a brain to think… And the list goes on… Missionaries are not exempted from the everyday struggles of life, the attacks of Satan and his demons, or our sinful fleshy desires! HOWEVER, Father God wants to use all that for His Glory!! I love how God never used logical sense when he parted the Red Sea, told Abraham to sacrifice His Son, threw Daniel into a den of lions, had Jonah swallowed up by a whale, and used a murderer and adulterer to rule His people and put him in the bloodline of my Jesus!!!
Father, You can have all of me! I pray the person who reads it will say the same thing! Today is the day to surrender everything friend!
To read more about Jessica and the work God is doing in her life, visit her blog: http://freedomandhealing.wordpress.com/
And please pray for her. She's got a lot of preparation, planning, and changes going on in her life over the next few weeks. Because despite all the craziness, God is speaking and I know He's got big, beautiful plans for her life.