We’re only halfway through, but our hearts and minds are being changed.
The last few weeks have been a bit of a whirlwind and I think it’s the beginning of us finding truth and seeking deeper meaning in this short life.
A little while ago my boss Julia lent me this book “anything,” kind of randomly. I dove into it, my soul seeking to be refreshed and challenged. After reading but a page, I new this book was exactly what max and I needed to read. I quickly convinced him to read along with me.
Before bed, every night we read a chapter or two and then we'd come before God surrendering our hearts and longing to be closer with him. We want to be ready to be used, to care for others here in Alexandria or across the sea. We want to live radical lives spreading his love and kindness.
Earlier this year, a couple sponsored by our church warmly welcomed anyone in the congregation to come visit them in their home in Tanzania, Africa. I remember that moment. Max and I looked at each other and eagerly whispered, “lets go!”
Sometime later they sent out a more direct invitation for young couples/ families that were willing to teach English to come join them in this new school they were setting up. We excitedly began considering this idea.
But the months that followed whizzed into a blur. We were finishing up our schooling, planning our wedding and honeymoon, while trying to find a home for September and full-time jobs to finance it all. Our minds were full. The idea of Tanzania was thrown on the back-burner as our crazy lives took the forefront.
But then we graduated.
And found a cute apartment for September.
And we got married.
And we honeymooned and explored Europe.
And then we were home.
The idea of Tanzania began pushing its way back into focus. We began teeter-tottering with the idea of going. Praying hard. Making a definite decision. And then backtracking. Saying “yes” to going, and doubting, again.
Then It all began to unravel as we dug deeper into Jennie Allen's book. Anything.
We continued filling our minds with inspiring stories of people who chased after God, abandoning their comforts, giving Jesus everything and anything.
We became thirsty.
We wanted to find that depth. Of living. Of sacrifice. Of loving others.
We couldn’t help but to wonder what God could have in store for us.
One night we read about Katie. Katie Davis, an American girl who was at the top of her class, with a cute boyfriend, her own convertible and colleges lined up. She took a gap year in Uganda teaching kindergarten. Her story is incredible. That one year turned into a life commitment to care for the orphaned, sick and under privileged. Because Jesus is worth it all. In one of her interviews she says, “Jesus does not ask that we care for the less fortunate, he demands it.”
We felt convicted, and at the same time, excited.
So we prayed.
The way we've prayed all week. That God would use us, that we would care for others, around the world, and here, too. I began to pray, and teared up thinking about how privileged we are: Snuggled under our beautiful blankets, fresh food in the fridge, closets filled of outfits to pick from, steady incomes and healthy bodies.
And then, God began confirming our prayers. Little “coincidences” had us giggling and thanking him. We would excitedly share with one another the crazy details God was showing and teaching us. At times, we were literally giddy with excitement.
God was at work and we wanted to be a part of whatever He was doing.
“I am living in the midst of the uncertainty and risk, amid things that can and do bring physical destruction, because I am running from things that can destroy my soul: complacency, comfort, and ignorance. I am much more terrified of living a comfortable life in a self-serving society and failing to follow Jesus than I am of any illness or tragedy.” -Katie Davis