Simply Trusting Everyday

demonstrating how to play a harp! credit: Nathan Corduan
One year. One whole year since I had been on any mission trip. This was really a record for me as I typically go on about three or four mission trips a year. So, I left for the Taiwan CI trip full of anticipation but also already dreading the end of the trip, knowing how time would fly by.

And fly by it did. So much so that when it was all over, we looked at each other and asked "Was that really the end?".

I can't pick one highlight of the trip. Believe me, I've tried and I don't think I can even pick a few because every moment was a highlight.

I do know though what the Lord taught me on this trip and for some reason those encounters all began with tears. As Laura Story's song Blessing goes, "What if Your healing comes through tears?".

Teargate #1
Dora could possibly be the most cheerful girl that I have ever met. She was always smiling and would run to give me a hug whenever I walked past. Sometimes, she would go into fits of giggles while watching a skit in large group and leave me a little worried about her frame of mind.

But behind that cheery disposition were hurts that no girl her age should have to go through. At church that Sunday, she bravely gave a testimony of how first her mother and then her father abandoned her at a young age, leaving her to the care of her elderly and sick grandparents. She cried as she spoke and there were few dry eyes in that sanctuary when she finished. 

As I cried with her, I realised that, more than just sorrow for her situation, I was crying because I was convicted of my obsession with myself and my problems. Convicted because I see my little difficulties as insummountable and let myself get discouraged so easily. Do you trust me? It seemed the Lord was asking me.

Teargate #2
It was one of those days that I was so flustered. So many things to do, so little time. I started large group unprepared and the children were being especially fidgety. My lack of energy and disorientated state that night only made things worse and it seemed like not even half of them were paying attention despite my best efforts.

No, I did not cry then, thankfully! 

I would not let this happen again, I told myself. I purposed to spend all my time till the next large group making sure I would be well prepared. But my help was needed and I ended up spending all my time at a little prayer meeting we had with some of the children. So, since I was stuck at a prayer meeting, I prayed that the next large group would go better. Was prayer as good as being prepared? I wasn't quite sure.

But the next large group was perhaps the most amazing one of the entire trip. Without me even pushing the children very much, they recited the verses and sang so loudly. As we sang the song That Which Heaven Treasures, a slow song without actions, several children closed their eyes while they sang and that sight was so moving that I was close to tears. And again, the same question: Do you trust me? It seemed the Lord was asking me.

Teargate #3
I was on the bus, on my way to the Taoyuan airport, leaving Taiwan for home. An email notification popped up on my phone and I opened it to find a progress report from my school with my grades for all my modules so far. I was incredulous at the realisation that I had gotten distinctions for almost all my modules. Umm, how did that happen?

You see, I had made it my goal to study hard but to make it secondary in my life. That meant that I would plan a Bright Lights meeting even if I had a huge assignment due the day before. Or that I would ignore the advice of my school and take double modules in the months before this trip so that I could take January and February off to be in Taiwan. So, good grades? Not what I was expecting.

And yet, as I sat there looking at my results, I knew that putting God first was worth it. All my worries about whether I could cope with school and everything else suddenly seemed very silly.

I really couldn't help crying on that crowded bus. I hope the lady sitting next to me thought I just suddenly had a runny nose. 

Again, the same question: Do you trust me? It seemed the Lord was asking me.

...................................

There were so many other ways this trip that the Lord taught me to trust Him. I saw so many of my prayers answered, so many of my worries proved unfounded and I got to work with such an amazing staff team!

But I write all this down because I know that I will forget. Already, I have to stop myself whenever I'm tempted to worry about my plans for the year ahead, what the Lord has in store for me. How silly of me! May this record of what the Lord has taught me be like the memorial stones that the Israelites gathered in Joshua 4.

There is no need to be anxious. We serve a God that we can fully trust in. May we never forget!

But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. - 2 Corinthians 4:7


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