As we rejoice in Jesus’ resurrection during Easter, it only makes sense for us to also reflect on the ways God has worked miracles in our own lives during this year of service to Him.
For each of us on the Home Team, there were different personal challenges that we had to face and overcome in order to fulfill our ministry.
These challenges included experiencing a Minnesota winter (or winter at all) for the first time, leaving our family that we’d never been away from before, facing our fear of public speaking, speaking to strangers at the Mall of America about our faith, and even healing from minor injuries. Yet with the grace of God, these potential obstacles became reasons to rejoice as we learned that His power can overcome anything. Just as Jesus defeated death, He defeats any stumbling blocks by turning them into opportunities to grow in courage, humility, and trust.
Especially now that we’re nearing the end of our year as missionaries, and we’ve seen ourselves transformed in great ways, we must maintain fervent faith in Him. As we’re becoming increasingly tired, and being tempted with the lie that we’ve changed enough or done enough, it is important for us to persevere and run to Him with every weakness, no matter how insignificant it may seem.
The more we entrust of ourselves to Him, the more He can use us to reach every person He has called us to serve this year, and the more He can purify our hearts.
We receive constant reminders of this from retreatants, host families, and others who we encounter in ministry when they comment that our joy as a team is what helped them to experience God in that moment. Even though we may feel exhausted or frustrated in those moments, by giving those weaknesses to God, we allow Him to help us choose the joy that others need to witness.
And when we do put our energy in God’s hands, we are able to inspire change like the one Madison chose to make after attending one of our weekend retreats in early April. Of how she would change following the retreat, she said,
“I will do what I should’ve been doing. I am going to keep God in my life and praise Him. I will never put Him as a second priority ever again. I am going to do what I can to make sure that I stay connected to the Lord.”
Just like Madison, we should always stay connected to the Lord, waiting for Him to surprise us even when we think we’ve seen all the change that can be done in us.
Throughout our year “on the road” we have been reflecting on 2 Timothy 4:2-5, which calls us to “proclaim the word,” and to “be persistent whether it is convenient or inconvenient.” Please pray that here in Minnesota – and beyond, once the year ends – we fulfill our call to teach, serve, and love as God himself taught us, whether or not the path before us is clear and simple.
May God bless you abundantly in this Easter season!