The bravery of God in trusting us! You say — “But He has been unwise to choose me, because there is nothing in me; I am not of any value.” That is why He chose you. As long as you think there is something in you, He cannot choose you because you have ends of your own to serve; but if you have let Him bring you to the end of your self-sufficiency, then He can choose you to go with Him to Jerusalem, and that will mean the fulfilment of purposes which He does not discuss with you.
We are apt to say that because a man has natural ability, therefore he will make a good Christian. It is not a question of our equipment but of our poverty; not of what we bring with us, but of what God puts into us; not a question of natural virtues of strength of character, knowledge, and experience — all that is of no avail in this matter. The only thing that avails is that we are taken up into the big compelling of God and made His comrades (cf. 1 Cor. 1:26-30). The comradeship of God is made up out of men who know their poverty. He can do nothing with the man who thinks that he is of use to God. As Christians we are not out for our own cause at all, we are out for the cause of God, which can never be our cause. We do not know what God is after, but we have to maintain our relationship with Him whatever happens. We must never allow anything to injure our relationship with God; if it does get injured we must take time and get it put right. The main thing about Christianity is not the work we do, but the relationship we maintain and the atmosphere produced by that relationship. That is all God asks us to look after, and it is the one thing that is being continually assailed.
(Taken from his bestseller book My Utmost for His Highest, reading for August the 4th)
I guess this is what I struggle most with as a new wife and missionary.
I am brought to the end of my sufficiencies as I grapple with learning a new language and culture.
Loneliness and awkwardness are now common foes I have to face on a daily basis. “Just be who you are” , you say. But how on earth? Being on a platform requires a certain bearing, decorum, an obligation to the ones who are watching you, learning from you, and sometimes looking to you for answers you do not have. I have never cried so much for a very long time, but despondency and tears are my constant companions after periods of ministering in public.
I want to live a transparent and open life before you, my family, friend, acquaintance. But it’s a different thing on the field altogether. Just as a mother is unable to divulge her worries, frustrations and problems fully to her child, so am I, on this field.
Perhaps even as I grapple through this feelings of withdrawal and seclusion, it is helping me grow in being the faithful and true companion that Nick so deeply needs, the wife to whom her husband’s heart safely trusts. (Prov 31:11)
Illness has been also a constant pain in the neck, literally and figuratively. The past month of traveling and ministering have taken its toll on our bodies, with nick and I recovering from a cold, and I, having recurring diarhhea. The pains in my back and neck have intensified, leaving me fatigued and tired even after a full night of rest.
These are some of the pressures I face as a new missionary. I wonder when I will be ‘normal’, feel normal again and function in an effective, progressive manner. Attempts thus far have felt like ‘one step forward, two steps backward’.
God, have mercy on me and make me
Love you guys. Thanks for reading. And now, for some pictures from the Kairos missions training we attended (Nick was one of the facilitators there)
Following that, we hosted a team of university students from Kuching who came to West Kalimantan for training, followed by an exposure trip to the interiors. Grateful for the opportunity to serve alongside them, and watch them use their talents, youth and energy for the Lord.
Please continue to keep us in your prayers.
Without Him, we are nothing, and without Him, we truly can do nothing.
I believe it will only be known on the last day how much has been accomplished in missionary work by the prayers of earnest believers at home.