Nearly seven years ago I learned a grace lesson that is now coming to fruition. In the security of my own living room we were enjoying an evening of fellowship with our small group from church. I don’t recall what we were supposed to be discussing, but I clearly remember saying that I didn’t care what God asked me to do, He had just better never send me to Africa.
Grace Lesson: Never tell God what to do…and certainly never tell Him what NOT to do!
I think before the words were fully out of my mouth, God snickered. Yup, I believe He snickers and then He says, “We’ll see about that!” That night he planted Africa in my heart.
For the last seven years He has been cultivating the soil of my heart, dumping on fertilizer, and watering that seed. You know, I wasn’t really even aware of the seed until about 3 years ago, when suddenly “Africa” was all around me. One day He clearly whispered in my heart, “I will send you to Africa, daughter.”
Well, I told Mike and he said…”No, way.”
I prayed…and waited…one more year. Then I told Mike what my heart was saying again.
Mike said…”We’ll pray…Maybe some day.”
I prayed…Mike prayed…and we waited…one more year.
This past summer Mike and I had ‘the talk’ again. This time we agreed that if God opened the doors for me to go to Africa next summer and we could work it out with our children, I would serve God in Africa for a short-term mission trip. (Key word…short)
Flip the fast forward knob and we land on ….last night and an email from a member of our church’s mission team. Apparently,in July of 2007 (next summer) our pastor will be going to Africa for 4 weeks to minister in Kinshasa, Kikwit and outlying villages. (This is in the Democratic Republic of Congo.) The email went on to say that anyone who could secure 4 weeks of vacation time and raise support could join the team…and they would like someone interested in ministering to the women and children. (It likely didn’t hurt that I had planted this seed with him many many months ago.)
The dilemma…FOUR WEEKS. Ouch. With a family as young as our is, and with a husband who is certainly NOT able to take off four weeks from work, four weeks is not something we cannot do. I say “we” because truly this would be a mission trip for our entire family just as Grace Lessons is a ministry of the entire family…I’m just the one who does the traveling.
So friends, please join us in praying about this opportunity to serve God in Africa. I hope this will be the first of many “Africa” posts. No matter what happens, I pray that God finds me faithful.
1 Corinthians 4:1-2 So then, men ought to regard us as servants of Christ and as those entrusted with the secret things of God. Now it is required that those who have been given a trust must prove faithful.