Monday, July 1, 2013


I feel like I start every post out with something to the effect of "'s been awhile."  This time, though, I'm neglecting that, because let's be honest, it's obvious.

But hello, JULY.  Where has this year gone?  I can officially say I graduate with my MSW next month. Alleluia...

The real reason for this post, though, is to write out some of the lessons God has been teaching me lately.  So, if you are wanting a super fun mom post about my sweet and adorable daughter, maybe next time (for the maybe 3 of you who read this...).  I will say, she is still sweet and adorable even if she is super ornery. :)

Here I go...back in May, I believe, I was at a mission committee meeting and the head of the mission committee mentioned that he had received a request for a female speaker from our church to go to India to speak at a conference that was being put on.  My stomach did a flip, and not that I hadn't paid attention the whole meeting because I had, but I began to listen even more intently.  He went on to say that he had already asked another couple to go from our church but that there may be a possibility for another couple from the church to go along with them.   I had two reactions to that...1. I was disappointed to some degree that I wasn't asked but 2. I went right on in to thinking that maybe Dan and I were suppose to be the other couple to go.

So I went home, and talked with Dan about everything and we began praying.  To make a long story short,  we talked to a few people, let them know our interest and kind of put the fleece out there to see if God would do anything with it.   Dan and I continued praying though and asking God to guide and direct us...

Eventually, we found out a few things, that the conference that was going to be happening had expanded and was going to last another day and that there was opportunity for involvement, but not necessarily a need.  So this really kind of shifted where Dan and I were thinking and what we were thinking to maybe the conference really wasn't where we were suppose to be involved. 

We continued covering this in prayer and asking God to open doors or shut doors and really to just lead and guide us.  And right now, things are still up in the air as to what is going to happen, but I know God is never late and He is always on time.

So that's the basic background.

In the midst of all of this, I really feel like God used the conference to open up my heart, mind, and eye to my desire to serve Him internationally and show me that there is a need and possibility for me to be involved.  To some degree, I feel like, I have been so focused on my MSW and being a new mom that I put my desire to be involved in missions on a back burner and not that it wasn't still a priority to me, it was a "I just can't do that right now" (that being traveling) type of thing.

But I can...and if God is calling me to it, then I must be obedient regardless of the cost.

The big dilemma, though, was and has been Eliana.  From the get-go, I was like, "Yes, this is perfect, Eliana is under 2 she will still fly for free, she's going with us".  I was dead set on it, ask my parents.  I had it all planned out in my mind that we would pack diapers and it would be perfect because if we bought any thing during our time there we would have room to bring them back.  I had also thought through what food we would need to take for her to survive for the 2.5 weeks we would be gone, what outfits would still fit her at that time of year depending on the temperature where we were at, etc.  You know, my OCD, type A personality was in full swing.

And then, in a conversation with Dan and my parents, I realized how much work it would be to travel with her.  And not only how much work it would be, but how miserable she would be with the time change, how frustrated I could possibly be to not be able to participate in meetings or going to different villages, etc. if I had to stay back with her.  And how taking her really could limit how effective I could be for the Kingdom.  (Dan and I even went as far to talk about who could go with us as a babysitter...)  But I struggled with the idea of leaving her SO much.  I have NEVER left her and really had no intention of leaving her until I have my next child.  I love being a mom and I love spending time with her, so it just made sense to me, at first, that I was taking her with me.  But it was during that conversation that God really began working on my heart.

I wrestled with God about this for a week or so before I really laid it at his feet and said, "God, I don't know that I can do this...I don't know that I can leave her.  What do you want?"  And you know those times where God probably laughs at you for asking a question like that or is just waiting for the perfect opportunity to tell you what He has (probably) been trying to tell you for awhile? was one of those times for me.

He said to me, "She's not yours anyway.  She's mine."

WOAH.  (Of course He didn't stop there...)

And then he went on to say, "If I can sacrifice my Son for you, you can sacrifice 16 days with her to expand My Kingdom."


Maybe woah is not the right word, but I'm not sure what is.  However, He sure did get my attention. 

Eliana Joy, my precious daughter whom I am so in love with, is not mine.  She is HIS.  He is letting me borrow her, letting me raise her, letting me live my dream of being a mom.  But ultimately, I must commit her and my parenting to Him.

It was at that point, where I truly feel God showed me that, yes, while it is going to be painful to leave her (if the trip comes to fruition), my first priority must be honoring Him in all that I do.  My first priority is not being a mom or a wife, my first priority is being a daughter of the King.  Daughter of the Almighty.  And if I want to truly set an example for Eliana of what it means to live a life fully devoted to Him, I cannot ignore when he calls me to obedience even if it is hard or feels impossible.

So, as excited as I am for the possibility of serving the Lord in this manner, it does not come with out pain.  I still struggle with guilt and doubt, but I know that is the evil one trying to steal my joy and distract me from what God has in store.  But I must trust.  I must walk forward knowing that the safest place to be is in the hand of God.  And that goes for me, and my daughter.

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