"...To Seek Me & To Serve Me"
I moved out of my apartment this week, I left my home, my life, and my whole world in Grand Rapids behind. And I feel such an ease in my spirit. This week, I'm here in Chicago in stillness before the Lord and resting in His presence. I found myself dancing and praising God to all these throwback praise and worship songs, remembering all the victories I've stood in over the last 3 years post-salvation... "Sinking Deep" by Hillsong reminding me of my baptism, the immense warfare I experienced beforehand and God's love anchoring me through it all. "Jesus Is Alive" by CityAlight reminding me of rejoicing in the freedom of Christ Jesus amidst a dry wilderness and dark storm surrounding me. "In The Wilderness" by Rachel Morely reminds me of working a really difficult job and slipping back into addiction, feeling helpless and defeated but seeing God's faithfulness in deliverance, His new mercies each day, and knowing He was holding me while working in my shortcoming. I wondered if I'd get a song for this chapter of life too, but I realize I've had one for this for a while: "Spirit Lead Me" by Influence Music. When some missionaries came to my young adult group to speak a few years back, I first heard my call into missions, I was dead set on moving to Zambia as soon as possible, but I wasn't ready. I was like 2 or 3 months into walking with Christ! God used that song to still my rapidly growing passion for the mission's field and plant me in ministry in Grand Rapids. He used that fire to fuel building His Kingdom in my hometown first. And that song is coming back up now... There's a line that says, "It felt like a burden, but once I could grasp it; You took me further, further than I was asking." It feels more applicable now than ever! A couple years ago, the Lord leaned in and whispered, "would you give it all up, would you leave it all behind to seek me and to serve me?" The question has remained over the years, I've contemplated what it could mean or look like, but I said yes! When the Creator gives an invitation like this with your name hand-written on it, of course the answer is yes! It's still so crazy to think that just 2 months ago I was working a semi-corporate full-time job, and I'd planned on buckling down in Grand Rapids for another 5 years minimum to start a nonprofit as I "waited out the time 'till the missions field." Then quite suddenly God closed every door and told me to pack up and go into missions. Overjoyed and truthfully a bit flabbergasted, I said, "okay, God! Where you send me, I will go." And now I'm here, 3 days till I head to training camp for an 11-month trip. It's hard to believe that less than 3 weeks ago, I had only 6% of the total $19,700 needed and I am in awe of the crazy unexpected ways God's been showing up! Even still, as I need 40% funding to go to training and yet having only 35%, my bags are all packed and I feel such deep-rooted peace. I have this steady, unyielding confidence in the Lord knowing He will plant me where He wants me, and His will will be done on earth as it is in heaven (Matthew 6:10)! I've given Him this trip; I've given Him my heart. My life is an altar, here I lay down my obedience as my cry of worship! Often, I plead with God to search me and know me, to test my heart, to see if there be any wicked way within me and to lead me in the way everlasting (Psalm 139:23-24). Truly I want to seek Him and humbly I want to serve Him. Deeply I want to know Him and earnestly I desire the real Him! And He brings to my mind Jeremiah 29:12-14a"'Then you will call upon Me and come and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart. I will be found by you,' declares the Lord..." Isaiah 60:3 says, "All nations will come to your light; mighty kings will come to see your radiance." And as a city on a hill cannot be hidden (Matthew 5:14), I'm praying fervently that this will be the testimony of me and my team! Will you join me?