“So, how are things going with your fund-raising?” For obvious reasons, I am asked that quite frequently these days. The truth is, things are going incredibly well. I set myself a goal to have commitments for 100% of my monthly and ‘up-front’ expenses before I head to mission training mid-May. To date, I am close to two-thirds of the monthly and one-third of the up-front funds raised. With several more people to contact and three more months to go, God has been providing in amazing ways.
The book that helped guide my approach focuses on the fact that (1) this is God's work and so it is appropriate to ask others to support me, and (2) it is more about the connection with others than about the money. I agree with both points, and truly do feel that this is about God’s glory being proclaimed. I get excited being able to share how He is at work in the D.R., and how He has been moving in my heart. It’s been incredible to see how God is using even this portion of my journey to help me share His love.
God is good, His work is good, and it is good to invite others to be a part of it. By allowing others to bless me, I am helping them to be blessed. And, truly, God is so faithful. I am in awe of how He is moving. God has connected me with people I’d never met before, re-connected me with friends, and brought out interest (and generosity!) from unexpected places. It is overwhelming and humbling.
Sweet, Kim, this is awesome. You should be turning sanctified cartwheels. Yes, I should.
Okay. If you are like me, you are now preparing for the giant, “But”. I’ve lived down south long enough to know that if someone starts a sentence with “I love her to death…” it’s going to end with “but did you see that ugly dress?” Or, “I don’t mean any harm…” will conclude with “but he has got to be fired”.
I’m one of those ‘glass half-empty’ types. Jesus said that in this world we would have trouble. I completely agree. So, I don’t get freaked out when bad stuff happens. Instead, when things are going along smoothly ('too' smoothly), I start to worry. I wait for the “But…” It is a terrible way to live.
Right now things are going well. Instead of feeling that this is confirmation of God’s call on my life, I’m waiting for the “But…” It’s this strange tension where I actually feel some relief if something goes wrong. It’s like I need there to be a balance of good and bad. How I dearly wish I was not like this! I brace myself for bad things, and in that way rob myself of the joy of the good ones.
The weird thing is, when I’m struggling, I know that God is right there with me. I talk with Him a lot when I’m going through tough stuff. It’s when everything is coming together that I tend to stop sharing things with Him. I know God works in all things for the good of those who love Him, but I only ever think of that in terms of the ‘bad’ things. Why can I not see that He is also at work in the good stuff?
Jesus is with me in my troubles, but also in my joys. It’s so sad that I am okay crying out to Him in need, but don’t invite Him into my joy. How did I get into this odd habit of only inviting Jesus into my pain and suffering? How it must grieve Him to only be a part of my icky stuff!! When awesome things happen in my life, I want those I love to celebrate with me. I don’t spend my time with them fretting about some future point when it’s going to be bad. I just enjoy sharing happiness together.
How horrible would it be if I gave a friend a picture frame, and instead of enjoying it, she sat and talked about how awful it was going to be when she dropped it and it smashed into pieces?! Is that how I treat God, who gives me not knick-knacks but grace upon grace?
Wow, Father, You are amazing and I am a mess. Thank you for hearing our cries of pain, but thank you, maybe even more, for hearing our shouts of gladness. Thank you that You love me enough to nudge me when I’m being silly. Forgive me for accepting Your good gifts in a spirit of apprehension instead of joy. Teach me to revel in You!