As I sit here and write my house is full, but it is eerily silent. All five of the other members of my family are currently sick napping.
You know the kind. Feverish, nauseous, headache that Motrin only mildly touches, and so your body does the only thing it can do. It rests.
We are four days home from our family missions trip and I believe our bodies are reacting in a way quite similar to our hearts and minds.
With an overload of thoughts and emotions we do the only thing we know how to do, we wait, we rest, we pray.
How does one touch heavenly joy and then meander on back through regular life? How do you sit with Jesus and finally know full well what the Bible means when it says, “the Son of Man did not come to be served, but to serve” (Matthew 20:28).
I am tempted to wipe the slate clean and start over again. And not because I feel guilty, or bad, or that we knowingly got of course, but because I take seriously God’s gentle nudge back to His direction.
I am standing in the gap between these realities:
When we are home we are tempted to self-serve each day and every day (when I say “we” I mean each one of us in our family). Yet, while we were away we were busy with work and serving, so infinitely more rewarding than entertainment all the time.
When we are home we spend a lot of time separate. Dad at work, kids at school or camp, Mom spinning the infinite wheel of Mommy/Work/House balance. While away we worked as a family, one unit made of 6 uniquely gifted parts, and our children lit up as they saw what they were capable of.
At home, many days we are physically rested but struggle (at times ) with discontentment. While away we were physically exhausted yet so full of joy and peace.
At home our life is predominantly “us.” With the exception of a few playdates and holidays here and there, we live, eat, and breathe just the 6 of us. While on our trip we ate as a community, we shared life as a community, we laughed, we cried, we worshiped and (best of all) we poured into our children all as a community.
No, the trip was not perfect, and we saw more large sized insects than one would choose to mention but the small hard things didn’t seem to matter.
And so here we sit, home and sick and tempted to forget. But if God made me one way He made me stubborn and so I will stew and pray until I figure out how to take these things home with me:
-Serving as a way of family living.
-Working together, as one family unit with 6 working parts.
-Taking our children alongside life with us as much as possible.
-Living in community, more outward and less inward.
And ya know, I don’t know where life has brought you or where you find yourself today, but I do find it common in my own life and faith that if I have been sitting in one place too long God wants to beckon me out of the comfort for a little while. God likes to keep me on my toes in that way, I wonder is it the same for you?
I am pretty sure people thought we were crazy. And I have become comfortable with knowing people see me that way as long as I am also confident that we are following God’s call.
Is there something that God might calling you to, even though people might think you are crazy?
If that sentence pops out at all to you may I pray this prayer over you (and me) and anyone else who might need it today:
Father God thank you for calling us out. Thank you for gentle beckoning us forth to love others the way you love them, thank you for allowing us the privilege of serving the way you served. We know that your service cost your life and so we confess Lord that so many times we are afraid! Afraid of any pain, loss, discomfort, heart ache, or sickness that may come when we leave the place we have nestled into. Give us strong faith. Give us boldness and confidence to stand for you above anything else. Help us to know where you are calling us to and help us to not waiver or doubt. Lord, your word is clear “go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age” (Matthew 28:18-20). Help us to GO! Wherever “going” is for us, may we go and may you be with us every step of the way.