One of the most common things that I have heard in the past two years is, "I really wish I/we could do what you and your family are doing." There is so much to this statement and so much that hearing this statement stirs up in my heart. I want to process a little bit of it here, for you. You know, in the event you have ever said those words to me or to someone else.
I do not come from a home that was centered around the gospel. I did not hear of the gospel in my home. My parents are divorced and my brother spent 10 years in prison.
The reason for me sharing this information with you is completely purposeful. When people find these things out about me they are often shocked. Usually there is a conversation that follows about how the listener thought that I must have had a "perfect life".
The reality is, none of us have a perfect life. That is waiting for us...but it's not yet here.
Somehow, there is this thing that happens in the believers mind when they see someone taking "bold" steps to follow Jesus. It's a thought that is cast into the mind of the observer that says, "That person is better than you. Further along in their walk than you. They have more faith than you."
Um, those things are not true. Do not believe those lies.
I know that the LORD has placed you right where you are, so that YOU will seek God and feel your way toward Him and find Him. I know this because this is what Paul says, under the leading of the Holy Spirit, in Acts 17 verse 27.
So, as part of a body that is made up of different and unique purposes and skills, the LORD has a purpose and a plan just for you. One that, if YOU don't do it, nobody else will. YOU were created for excellence and a grand purpose...You were created to bring God glory!
Friends have told us that they do not feel called to get up and go to another continent. I do not think this is light-hearted statement. I agree that the LORD does not call every single believer to get up and move to another continent. But I do believe He has you right where you are so that you will seek Him more. So that you will bring Him glory right where you are.
If you wake in the morning, half asleep make your cup of coffee, get showered and dressed, mindlessly drive to work, have one of the three options you always eat for lunch everyday, complete your daily to-do list, drive the opposite direction you drove 8hrs before, arrive home, eat dinner and get ready for bed...this post might be for you.
I am a mom, so this one's for the moms too. If you are awakened by a hungry, bouncing child. If you feed said child and begin to clean up mess, upon messs, upon mess that this child and others make. If your days are full of phrases like, "What do you say?" "What is that smell?" "Try again." "No, THANK YOU." "Stay in your bed." "Please speak kindly to your sibling." "Wipe your feet, please." "Put your pants back on!" and many more! If you feel like a milk factory, a teacher, a person assistant, a chauffeur, a laundromat, a maid, a personal chef, a biblical counselor...but do not get paid like one. If you wonder if you were really created to sit and meal plan for the next 7 days.This post might be for you.
I have worked outside of my home. I have worked within my home. In both places, I can honestly say that it was often that I wondered if THIS was all that I was created for. ?.?.?
Do not get me wrong. These are VERY important roles and responsibilities. The issue with me and my heart is that I was not doing these things as unto the LORD. I was stuck in the day to day. It was a routine I could do and not really think about it. Not really finding purpose or even thinking there WAS purpose to my day. My actions. My words.
Does that even make sense?
Then one day the LORD clearly called my family to move to Europe and make disciples and plant churches there. So that is what we are doing. Not because we have a grandiose plan to change the world. Not because Keri and David Campbell came to a place in their faith where they had finally "arrived" to missionary status. Not because we are qualified. Not because we have the finacial means to do so. Only because Jesus is already there, the only qualified One, and already completing a great work that He has started and He has invited us along.
What my heart is yearning to share with you today is that you can be a part of this work, not our work but His, right where you are. In your work place. In your home. To the man who faithfully gets up each morning and serves his God and his family by going to work, I say, "Thank you!" We could not do what we are doing if you did not faithfully serve our Lord through your work! You are doing a great and mighty thing for the spreading of the gospel to the ends of the earth! Thank you! To the mom who sits quitely sharing Bible verses and singing songs of Jesus' love to her little one, "Thank you!" Teaching these babes about a God who came to save sinners and redeem that which was broken is HUGE! Teaching them about God's love for the nations, for ALL men is world changing and a dynamic way to serve those who have moved to a different continent to share that same message! Teaching your children the ways of The Lord is teaching obediently, and I trust that it pleases the King greatly.
The verse in Colossians chapter three verses 23-24 reminds me that the work we are doing, is not for men. It is only for the LORD. The work YOU are doing, it's not for men/people. Do you hear that gentle message? It's not for you. It's not for your family. It's not for the missionary. It's not for the poor. It's for God.
All of it.
Heartachingly, friends have told us that they want to support us financially. The struggle comes when they don't know how much to give to our family.
Please, if this has ever been a struggle for you when considering joining our family in this journey or any other family, I would love to remind you of that Colossians verse.
The profit that you make when you work, in the home or outside of the home, should be for the LORD, not for men. While this is easy to say with our mouths, it is not quite as easy to put into action. And what does that even look like?
Last week I spent some time in the chair of an endodontist. In that hour, The Lord spoke to me and gave me a picture.
So, here is the challenge that I present to you if you are up for it;
1. Consider what you make in one hour of work. For those who are stay at home moms or who do not work for money, this is for you too, it just doesn't involve a dollar amount.
2. Pray about devoting one hour of work every month unto the LORD. Practically speaking, if you are a surgeon, business man, sales person, nanny, assistant, dentist, pastor, speaker, mom, etc. look at your calendar and pick a day.
3. On this chosen day, say out loud to the LORD that this day is for HIM and Him alone. Ask Him what He would have you do for Him on this day. Thank Him for providing this time and job for you. Thank Him for allowing you to serve Him. Read Colossians 3: 23-24 out loud.
4. Give away what you make in ONE HOUR to a work that is being done through and for Him. Outside of the work that we are doing for Him in Germany, there are many other amazing ministries that God has His hand on in this world. Pick one. Devote one hour of each month to serving Him, right where you are.
This sounds simple. It is! This sounds like it may not even make a dent in the needs of today. I trust that it will. Remember that time when Jesus was teaching for hours and His disciples realized that the crowds were probably hungry, over 5,000 of them? And our miracle-working God multiplied five loaves and two fish and fed them to satisfaction...with 12 baskets of food left over.
You were created for a plan and a purpose. God has you right where you are in order that you will seek Him and find Him. There is a role for you in sharing His message of salvation. Do not believe the lie that you are not valuable. Do not believe the lie that your contribution doesn't matter. Do not believe the lie that your faith is too small to do anything big for the Kingdom. Then get up and walk in the freedom and provision that the LORD has given you! Marvel in the Kingdom work that He is allowing you to participate in right where you are! Thank Him for letting you play a part...and tell others of what He shows you as you learn more about Who He is in this journey!