Wednesday, February 23, 2011

nothing like a good sabbatical

In the weeks prior to being released from the 9-5, which I actually loathed, but could never say it but now I can, I began to share with friends my plans and seek out options, potential ministries and job opportunities in Africa. My sweet friend Maggie told me to make lists of all my fears and things that were getting in the way. 9 out of 10 were financial reasons. The other one was dying of cholera. I saw that movie, The Painted Veil, once and have forever been terrified of dying on a cot in a Chinese village, or African. Horrible.

On the same day I lost my job, Maggie leaves a sweet message, unaware of my circumstances, pointing out that all my concerns are mostly financial and how you can never let money come between you and doing what you are called to do. All this advice I have heard so many times before, having even heard testimony of people showing up at the airport, without a ticket, and by the sovereign hand of God, in one way or another, boarding the plane. Now I don't really feel that God is calling me to Fiji, so I can't just spend my last dollar on a ticket and go there.  But Africa, she never leaves me. Visions forever emblazoned in my mind drive me to fight for justice for the extremely poor and I will dedicate my whole life for that purpose. So as Maggie points out how my security seems to be in my finances, I laugh at the message, as my finances have suddenly disappeared. They are no longer a crutch. I get to live by faith and watch God show up. 

And He already has. Maggie invited me out to Ohio to come away and rest. No one told me Ohio was beautiful.

I got to wear my Wellies and I got to spend ten days in a little slice of Heaven, watching snow fall, eating Brie and bread, working out in the mornings, deep conversations over dinner. I was constantly reminded of the kindness of God. Ever cheered on a runner, or athlete of any sort? Ever watched them increase their stride at the last turn all because of the cheers from the crowd? They get a second wind and the words of encouragement give them a boost and off they go. For ten days I got to hear, "you can do this", "the world is yours", "your opportunities are endless", "you are going to be okay", "you've been given a unique gift", "dream big". My stride increased and I am taking the lead.

Also in the little snow covered sanctuary, I realized that rest is a weapon. God is the Prince of Peace and my peace confuses the enemy. The evil one desires to freak me out. Kill, steal, destroy and freak out. So I am finding my peace and it feels so good. 

So I am weighing all my options. I get to go do whatever it is I want to do. I can live wherever I want to live. I have been given a unique gift. I am resting in knowing that it will come and it will be wild and it will be great. And you get to watch and you can come visit.

I have no idea what it looks like and am taking it absolutely one step at a time. Today's step is going to involve morning coffee, a nap in the sun, a really good book. So way better than Committee Meetings and Bill Summaries. I am overwhelmed that I get to live this life. Abiding in Him, using my rest as a weapon, knowing He has my back, knowing I have friends cheering me on, undone by His kindness.