Isaiah 30:20-22 New International Version (NIV)
20 Although the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, your teachers will be hidden no more; with your own eyes you will see them.21 Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.”
You all know I love a good story and THIS one is a good, long God-story. I’m not sure whether to take you the long way around or just cut to the chase. It’s been a long time since I’ve updated you. You see, God has been weaving together a perfect plan and all of the details had to be placed JUST so before the finished product could be revealed.
I’ll give you the punch line and then those of you who like the long story can read on so that you can see how God beautifully considered every detail.
I have made a three-year commitment to serve in a full-time capacity with Africa Inland Mission as a Mission Mobilizer. I will be based in San Diego, but the states I am responsible for will be CA, HI, and AZ. I will be looking for places God is already mobilizing people toward missions (training programs, discipleship and/or ministry schools, universities, small groups, campus ministries) and developing and nurturing relationships with those people in order to recruit and prepare new missionaries who desire to partner with God in reaching the unreached in Africa through AIM. AIM’s strategy is particularly focused on those people groups who have yet to have a gospel witness. I will also have the privilege of walking alongside these people as they are appointed, trained, raise support, and GO.
There are a number of key threads in this tapestry that I don’t want you to miss, so I’ll just highlight those:
- God used key people within the Body of Christ who were in positions of authority in my life to guide and direct me, beginning with the suggestion that I prayerfully consider a longer, one-year Home Assignment. That was the first whisper of direction that I heard.
- The next guidance came through hardship. It became clear that we NEEDED to be here as a family in order to support each other, have some stability, and work through more transitions and grief.
- Through all of this, God was opening doors to speak in many different contexts: churches, small groups, women’s retreats, mobilization ministries, events, etc. He was also using the comfort I have received to comfort others in helping relationships. Eventually, I realized he was actually USING me here and AIM leadership saw that same thing.
I have seen God’s hand so clearly in my life over the last year. First, “working in my heart to will and to act according to His purpose.” I doubted that for some months at the beginning of 2015. I couldn’t tell if it was MY desires or HIM working in my heart at first. In hindsight, I can see that He WAS stirring in me and preparing me for change. Way back in January as I was struggling through the transition of leaving Olivia in California and returning to Kenya without TWO of my kids, a very dear friend comforted me with these words, “God will bring all of your hearts to the same place at the right time and you’ll know what to do.”
That didn’t happen until the very end of March as we prepared to leave Kenya with our belongings. Two of the kids, at separate times, said to me, “Mom, I’m ready to go.”
We’re now back in San Diego and finalizing housing, learning the hard lesson that you should NEVER say “never.” The rental market is pretty bad here now, so I have had to prayerfully consider all of the houses that fit our needs whether they are for rent OR for sale. I am thankful for many friends and family who are well-suited to come alongside me and help me through these major decisions.
NOTE: I wrote THIS prayer request in April and am just proofreading it to send it out today… Please pray that God would reveal EXACTLY where He would have us live and the neighbors He would have us know.
I can’t wait to keep you updated as we continue to WATCH GOD WORK.
Thank you so much for your continued support through all of these transitions. I will remain fully supported in this new role, trusting God to provide for the added expense of living in Southern California. Please know how much I appreciate the sacrifices YOU make to keep me serving Him. There is a quote from John Piper on the wall of Mexico Caravan Ministries where I frequently speak that says, “Go, send, or disobey.” Thank you for being obedient to send me (even if it means HERE)! THIS is the purpose for which God has made me! I’ve never been so sure of it!