Continued from yesterday – and again – in no particular order:
#7. Communicating Details with Katie Fuels My Marriage
One night while we were at the village, one of the missionaries we were with called to talk to his wife. All the lights were out. Everyone was trying to sleep. Yet he was blabbing on and on about the details of the day with his wife. What’s more – HE was going to see his wife the next day! We had to wait several more days, while he would get to hug his spouse in the morning! Yet he talked to her and told her EVERYTHING!
At first I was major annoyed. That quickly turned into conviction. I had already made a mental note, earlier in the week, that this missionary couple had a GREAT marriage. There in the dark – under this guy’s bunk – while I was trying to sleep, their ‘secret’ hit me: constant communication. I cannot tell you how many times Katie has asked me to give her details and I discount it as not being a big deal. Wrong! They are a big deal . . . to HER! This missionary couple was both happy and healthy – on the other side of the world, serving Jesus in one of the hardest places on the planet! Why? One reason is that this guy was making the small sacrifice of giving his wife what she needs: DETAILS.
#8. Spiritual Growth is Guaranteed When Stretched and Pushed
Wanna grow spiritually? Do something uncomfortable. Seriously. That’s how you grow. Don’t believe me? Just ask the guys who accompanied me to India. They didn’t consider themselves teachers before they left El Dorado. Before they returned, not only had they taught – but they taught PASTORS. Yep. They did. Just ask ’em. And they did an incredible job too.
Do you think they grew spiritually?
When was the last time you spiritually matured to another level? I have a pretty good feeling it was the last time you did something uncomfortable that stretched you.
#9. Conquer Fear By Facing It
I’ll be honest – for a variety of reasons, I don’t like to travel internationally. Especially without Katie. There are a lot of things that just cause anxiety in my mind and heart. The anxiety level intensified the week before the trip and several times during. I didn’t want to go a couple of days beforehand and wanted to come home right in the middle of it. But you know what? I’m fine. You know what I learned? Fear is just that: Fear. There was nothing to it. Fear didn’t want me to go. Fear wanted me not to enjoy my time there. Fear wanted me to be miserable. By God’s grace I pushed through. The fears I had? Conquered. Want to conquer yours? Face ’em. Go ahead. They’re just fears.
#10. God Answers Prayer When on the Front Lines of Disciple-Making
Does God answer prayer all the time? Yes.
Does God always hear us? Yes.
But is there a different level of intensity and clarity in His answers when His children are doing what He said specifically to do? I think so.
I can’t explain it. I don’t have chapter and verse. But I know that when I am on the front lines making disciples of all nations – He answers prayer in a more revealed and focused way than when I am just randomly living life.
The ‘Take-Away’? When I feel far from the Lord, or feel I haven’t heard from Him in a while, I need to ask myself whether or not I am specifically doing what He called His followers to do?
#11. I Love to Laugh AND Make Others Laugh
Call it annoying. Call it ridiculous. Call me an idiot. But I can’t help it. I love to laugh and really love to make others laugh with me. I will spare you the details (due to the fact that I would like Ryan and Chris and Craig to still be my friends), but trust me: we laughed from the time we left El Dorado until the time we met up with our wives. There were times we laughed so hard it hurt. (The picture above? I have no idea who the guy was – but I took a selfie with him. We both enjoyed it!)
Words cannot convey what laughter did to my soul. God wired me to love laughter and to constantly look how to make others laugh with (or at!) me.
Speaking of which, “Craig, how is your rash doing?”
#12. God Hasn’t Called Me to Live Overseas Yet
I asked Him. I think every Christian should ask the Lord if He wants them to go to the nations at least once a year. I do not feel the Lord calling me to go at this point in my life. That could change tomorrow. I better be open to it. But right now, He wants me to stay here. To be sure – it’s not sit here and NOT impact the nations. It’s stay here to equip and train and mobilize and motivate others to impact the nations. He wants me to play the role on this side of the pond for now.
I believe He wants every follower to play some role in fulfilling the Great Commission. I know what mine is . . . FBC get ready! But what’s your role? Are you fulfilling it?