I’ve realized recently that I try to create my own heaven. Through the way I decorate my house, the furniture I have, the bedding I use, the food I eat, the drinks I consume, the activities I choose. It seems I’m trying to make my life as comfortable and enjoyable as possible. Don’t get me wrong, I love to help people and serve others. But it’s almost a natural default to try to create our own heaven.
I don’t want to live with this as my default setting. I do think it’s ok to have a nice house and nice things and take vacations. But I want my default to be to live out my purpose here and now and enjoy heaven when I get there.
One reason we moved homes last year and purged much of our belongings is to get rid of things standing in our way of God. We had too much stuff. It takes lots of time, energy and money to have and KEEP UP with stuff. So what’s the next step in our journey?
We recently started reading Jennie Allen’s book, “Anything”. The basic idea of this book is to have your prayer be “God, anything. I’ll do anything you ask.” This should be our prayer anyway if we are true followers of Christ, but the human nature in us really struggles to submit it all. The flesh and the spirt still fight, but I hope that the Spirit will win on purpose factors in my life. And making choices and taking steps of faith even when I’m afraid.
God has brought me full circle in a few areas of my life in the last few years. It’s so fascinating how God works. When He brings me back to a place I once was it always humbles me. Like the time I graduated high school and couldn’t wait to get out of my little town and now He has me starting a business that markets this town to bring community together. Or the many times I have said “I’ll never…” and ALWAYS end up doing it. And the most humbling of all – when I criticize someone for doing something and then find myself in the same place, doing the same thing.
Growing up I had the opportunity to be exposed to inner city missions. It was an amazing experience and something I have always had a heart to do. Missions. Help others. Tell others about Jesus. When you get married and you and your spouse don’t have the same ideas or goals on how life should be lived you don’t always get to do what your heart was set on. I was always frustrating Josh because I was volunteering here or there and offering this and that and there wasn’t any time for him. It frustrated me that there would be needs all around him but he couldn’t see them. And so I prayed. I prayed this verse:
If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, not on things that are on earth. Set your mind on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. Colossians 3:1-2
It wasn’t long before God started really showing off. Josh had begun to grow so quickly spiritually it was crazy. He was reading book after book and then we sold our house to downsize. Then he started talking about moving us to Africa (don’t worry – we aren’t moving to Africa, yet). And when this change happened, I put my brakes on. Was this what I had been praying for? Not this God, just a little more compassionate husband. One who sees needs around him and does something about it. This is too crazy God.
So here we are. We sold our house. Josh is trying to move us to Africa. We keep talking about taking a mission trip over seas and reading books and praying. But we haven’t done anything. So when we heard about an upcoming trip to Haiti with Longhollow where they needed 2 more participants so the trip wouldn’t get canceled – we hopped on. I have read so much about Haiti from my friends Greg Blackmon and Abby Blackmon. You should read their blogs – they are amazing. I am really excited to get to experience this country and these people for myself.
The trip is from September 18-September 26 (less than 2 months away!). We are working to raise the funds prior to departure. I’m not yet sure they ways in which we will go about this. If you would like to make a donation, you can click here or the button in the side bar. Reading this blog and following me on Instagram, Facebook, or Twitter will be good ways to keep up with what we are doing along with learning more about what we will be doing on the trip.
Above all else, we covet your prayers. That we will prepare our hearts for this journey. That God will prepare the right places for our children. That we will build relationships with those we go with and those we serve. And most of all, for God to be glorified through every step.