Monday, May 13, 2013

Summit 9 Series: Day 1

I clearly remember when I was a little girl, sitting completely enraptured by visiting missionaries in our church sanctuary. I can still see the bright orange carpet, and the scuffs on the pew backs where small feet had for years, rested upon the hymnal racks, before mothers quietly gave "the look"and the feet were quickly dropped.

For me, when they would speak, all the people, my parents, my fidgety brother, other kids, they would all fade into the background.  I did not want to miss a single word that they said.  I visualized the far away lands that they spoke of, and imagined myself there someday.  I imagined what it would be like to be brave.  I wanted to know as much about God as they did, and speak with even a fraction of their passion.  Missionaries were my rock stars.  And I wanted to grow up to be just like them.

But it wasn't until a woman came to speak alone, that I KNEW that God had a plan for me and my heart.  I so wish that I remembered her name.  I hate that I forgot it.  But she would probably say that is exactly what should have happened.  I don't remember her name, but I do remember that she followed Jesus Christ every day.  And that is what truly matters anyway.  She spoke of an orphanage she lived at.  Although to her, it wasn't an orphanage.  It was just home.  And all the children who had either been left from poverty or by their parents' deaths, were her children.  In that moment I knew.  I didn't know when or how, but loving children is what God had for me.  Fighting for children was my mission.  Loving babies, without a mama to make them feel safe, is who God made me to be.

Twenty years later, that is where I'm walking. I'm taking steps to follow my heart.  Sometimes those steps feel enormous and I don't feel brave enough.  Sometimes the steps feel like I'm in slow motion or like I'm in quick sand and I just can't get where I want to be.  And other times I stand still.... and wait. 

The peace though, oh the peace is so good.  I love how God puts you in a certain place and time, and puts all the right people in your path. If you let him. For me, going to the Christian Alliance for Orphans, Summit 8 was exactly that.  I learned so much, I met the most wonderful people, and I really was able to refine what I should do next.  This last year was definitley a year of refining.  And growing. And waiting. Excruciating waiting.  I was so tested in my personal life, family life, community and faith. 

I wanted to quit.  A couple of times.  But you can't ever really escape your core being, can you?  I went to Summit 9 this year feeling so completely, utterly, unworthy.  A failure.  But what I learned {rather, reminded of} the very first day at a pre-conference intensive workshop changed all of that.  And then that message kept on getting hammered home to me.  I think God knows that he is going to need many people, to remind me in different ways and at different times, repeatedly.
  And he did just that.  That lesson, was so life altering.  I know that sounds so dramatic.  Possibly trite.  Maybe a little cliche.  I know it sounds that way, but it is truth.  The way I think changed. 

Come back tomorrow to find out what the message was! Subscribe, follow, or whatnot... because you just might find it "life altering" too :-)

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