Friday, May 29, 2009

"I Could Never...

...do what you do," she says. It is not the first time I have heard this.  In fact, almost everywhere we go, a well-meaning woman will share with me her doubts that she could ever be a missionary. 


The truth is, sometimes I feel like telling her, "I can't do it either!"  It breaks my heart to be away from my family and friends.  It actually physically hurts when I say goodbye...again.  It is exhausting to pack up and
move so regularly. 



You see, I am the kind of girl who would love to live in the same house in some quiet town for the rest of my life, preferably just down the street from my parents.  I do not need adventure.  I crave routine and stability.  I long for a place where I am known and loved for me, where old ladies squeeze my cheek and tell me how much I look like my mother did at my age. 


If I focus on those things, I become so weak that I am frozen in a pond of pity just waiting for the enemy to come fish me out and eat me for dinner.  However, if I focus on Truth, I never give up-because I do not have to do it. He will do it in me. 


Usually when I hear that familiar phrase, "I could never. . . " I just respond, "Yes, at times it can be challenging, but God's grace is always enough for us."  I really mean that.  He really has always met us in
our moments of grief with a breath of comfort, in our hour of exhaustion with an infusion of strength.  When we are weak, He is shown strong.  Everyone can see that our glorious power is from God and is not our own, that our only power and success come from Him. 



I think that next time, though, I am going to change my byline.  I will smile and say, "You are right. You couldn't do it, and neither can I.  That is the whole point.  He wants to do it through me and through you, so that we can be mirrors that brightly reflect His glory.

Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. . . And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord's glory, are being transformed into His likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, Who is the Spirit. . . But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us. . . That is why, for Christ's sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong. II Corinthians 3:5, 18; 4:7; 12:10

16 comments:

Betty said...

Good point! Makes me think....

jennykate77 said...

That is so beautifully stated. He is more than enough through any time of need. I love what you said..."That's the whole point. He wants to do it through me and through you...so that we can be mirrors that brightly reflect His glory." That is so good.

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

Ryan and Rachel Cote said...

Kind of makes my stomach hurt thinking of all the good-byes headed our way. I know though that what you say is true! Hurt is hurt but his grace is sufficient!

Buzzings of a Queen Bee! said...

So true. I am sure hearing that all the time can be demoralizing, especially since you want to be the one putting down roots and staying in one house. God definitely has to do it through you! I just said a prayer for you tonight, and for all your goodbyes!
Carrie

Java with the Johnsons said...

Bravo!! Chi...you have such a way with words... i never know what to say to people when they say that to me...cuz i agree...it's not like i like to say goodbye to my family...or move for the millionth time. it's definitely the Lord...and i couldn't survive a single day!

Anonymous said...

I still remember a devotional you gave back in our MO days about "Christ being our Home" or something like that. That devotional still comforts my heart as I struggle the same as you do. Having a baby in a foreign country was a lot harder than I thought it would be emotionally. But just like you said, God has been there every step of the way. Thanks for the reminder. And I will be praying for you in the coming days. Ouch my heart is already hurting for you because I know how much it hurts. For the sake of the call!--Clarissa O

Becky Aguirre said...

I, too, have heard that so many times and it is hard to know what to say to that! I think your proposed answer is quite awesome! :D I might just try it myself someday...thinking of you during these last few days...

Mo said...

Great post Shilo! Can I just quote you? :)

Stephanie said...

It actually physically hurts when I say goodbye...again. ...I totally relate to this right now!! Thanks for your honesty and your post--- it helps to read someone who understands.

Tim and Susan said...

What an awesome post!!! So totally true. We hear that all the time too. I would love to have you guest post this on my missionary blog!!! I couldn't have written it better!!!

Susan

Joy @ SAH Missionary said...

Amen, can I please steal that?! That is exactly what I always try to say, but it doesn't come out nearly so eloquent. :)
Blessings,
Joy

Anonymous said...

Thanks, Shilo! So glad to have you here on our team! Hugs. Trisha

Anonymous said...

I just wandered on your blog today for the first time. Funny I should come to this post. Being a military wife I also cravy stability and to be in a place where I am known and loved. At times I get very overwhelmed and discouraged with the task of starting over all the time. Thanks for your encouragement. Your Friend, Laura

The Herd said...

I found you over at Julie's blog---this post is so good...so me!
Thanks!!

Susan said...

Thanks for your words! I am hoping to start blogging more and just happened upon your blog spot. I too have had to learn this lesson of "it isn't what I can do but what God can do through me". Blessings

Susan Snyder said...

I can't either, and I tell people that all the time. But then I still try to do it by myself. Thanks for the reminder. By His Grace, For His Glory, Susan -- Jos, Nigeria

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