I have learnt a lt this year. I learned that things don't always turn out the way you planned, or the way you think it should. And I've learned that there are things that go wrong that don't always get fixed or get put back together the way they were before. I've learned that you can get through bad times and keep looking for better ones. This year wasn't always pretty. It wasn't always comfortable. Some things and situations even break your heart. But that's okay. The journey changes you - it should change you. It leaves marks on your memory, on your consciousness and on your heart. You take something with you, and hopefully also leave some things behind. I will forever remain humble because I know I could have less. And I will always be grateful because I know I've had less.
What? How does that work? It does, if you're a sinner. I am a very honest person and I want you to fully understand my journey, so yeah, sometimes you're going to think I am an absolute fool. Great! Please think that, because my friend, that's exactly how gross and sinful and foolish I am, without God. Great thing that God doesn't leave us in our sins. Thank God He doesn't. Now of course, you want the juice (news) of what I have done. I thought that I had the right to want. I started to want the things other people have. For example, I saw someone with Ray-Ban sunglasses. I decided I want them, couldn't afford them and started wishing I had it. Even prayed for them. Realizing, I can just ask God for it. I started treating God as a vending machine. I also had the worst mindset: I am a missionary this year which automatically makes people think more of me. (I'm very ashamed.) It got worse. I am in Turkey Istanbul. The people are amazingly friendly here. There are a lot of Turkish Delight shops and wow! The people allows you to taste the stuff and gives it to you for free as well! This is how you get things for free: They see business when they see you. They call you over. You start a conversation with them. Then you pretend as if you do not know what something (example: a chocolate mushroom) is. They give it to you to taste. You walk away. It just didn't feel right. God started talking to me about this. For the first situation He told me: "Ye shall not want." Correct, it's in the ten commandments. Secondly I got an amazing verse: For though I be free from all men, yet have I made myself servant unto all, that I might gain the more. 1 Corinthians 9:19 KJV. God told me how I am manipulating people and being fake to get a little piece of Turkish Delight and to let people give me things. Readers, if you do something wrong but want to live in alignment with God's purpose for you, Keep searching and He will show you your errors: Let us therefore, as many as be perfect, be thus minded: and if in any thing ye be otherwise minded, God shall reveal even this unto you. Philippians 3:15 I am sorry that you have to find out how sinful I am. Luckily we serve a living God who will love us as we are, but won't leave us that way. I am ready to say that I will try my best not to want. I will try my best to become a servant unto all men. That is my deepest desire: to serve in the way God has prepared for me. Challenhe Accepted! Stay in the outlook for my next blog: I want to write about the Heart of Islam or something like that.
Wait! What? This is not about me?
Leadership gets defined when you are thrown into the back of an airplane wondering if all the team members are on board. Or when, a supposedly agreed upon, 5 minute per person shower, turns into a self proclaimed 10 minute spa treatment with 6 other people waiting for their turn with a "what are you going to do about this" expressions on their faces. Or even that moment when someone tries to convince the guys that lentils have the same amount of protein as a steak. And all this before breakfast.
I'm being reinvented. Trying new things. Beliefs are broken. New ones are being formed. It's not an easy process. The values Jesus taught are treasures. They bring life. They bring meaning to a world in need. They make our world a better place. The values will change humanity and the way we are living. Feed the hungry. Clothe the naked. Love your neighbor. Take care of the widows. Honor your parents. Don't kill someone. Don't take stuff that don't belong to you. Treat others the way you want to be treated. And then in the end...do this all out of love. Because we can not do this without Jesus. We can not boast in any of our endeavors because it is his values we are living out. And we can not be proud of ourselves for bringing these values to society because we didn't think of them. Jesus did. We can not take any credit. And living these values have nothing to do with you getting a ticket into heaven. That's free. So the only reason to live these values is to show God's love to people. And the values show the love. Not you. You are only doing them. We have no grounds to think we are the business. It's all Jesus. Because if you think about it you would rather stay at home than go give out food. But once you start doing this you will start to see that there is a world in need. That there are people out there hungry for hope. People thirsting for more than a glass of purified water. Your heart will grow to love people and their stories. It is in doing that we start loving. And then we will realize even more that Jesus is the only guy who can bring hope in the final outcome. That he is the one who restores. We can just live the value and not worry about our flaws because Jesus is perfect. And we should remember that Jesus is not a product that we try to sell to people. These values create platforms on which we can share Jesus with people without using words. Our faith is a faith of action. Each one of us should just figure out where we are needed to create platforms for Jesus to show His glory. We set up sort of a stage and wait to see what Jesus will do. It's in the waiting and anticipating that he arrives and blows us away. These values are confrontational. They tend to lead us into dark areas of urban mazes or to desolate savannas or thick jungles. They show us that we are not as great as we think we are and that Jesus is the coolest person who ever lived and is still living. And all these values and actions and platforms should all have the foundation of love. A selfless attitude. And this is where Jesus really comes in. Helping us to be selfless. We forgive because we are forgiven. We love because we are loved. We give because we receive freely. We value because He values. It is in this that we change our hearts towards those around us. To think of them more than of ourselves. To see that Jesus loves everyone. Everyone. He loves everyone. He values each and every person. Every person. That's a lot of people. We need to enter society with humility. Admit that we need help. And that we are here to help. And that Jesus is the only one who can help through us. Through anyone. Through all of us. We are in this together. We need each other because we need Jesus. All of us. Through us
So, I woke up in my own bed this morning after 7 weeks of sleeping in unfamiliar places with people I hardly know. Now I can say that I have 35 new homes built in my heart. On Thursday night we were commisioned, and man, what a long journey to FREEDOM!!!!!!!!!!
it is in serving the people that you discover something about the heart of God. We are currently spending time in the local community meeting people and playing with kids in the streets. The way we view community is limited to our environment. We compare what people have to what we have. It is like we deem our standard of living as the benchmark. Our take on the world is limited to our own suffering. We lack perspective. Their is a world in need and we are blind to what the world really needs...hope. We all need it. Jesus is our hope. A life connected to an unending source.
“Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him.” (psalm 34:8)
Our journey began on a Thursday morning.
Our mission: Create an awareness of foreign missions and Global Challenge as an outlet and Link up with Past Participants and parents of current participants and encourage them.What we noticed: God has been equipping and stirring up people to walk out the life of abundance where they have been positioned and He just so happened to allow us to be involved in that process…