Another wonderful week of the 2020 Calvary School of Missions is in the books. Two weeks down, four to go…
For those who don’t know, the purpose of the school is two-fold: 1) to lay a biblical and practical foundation for those who believe they are being led by God to long-term missionary work, and 2) to allow for an extended time of laying down all our wants and desires in life to seek God’s direction and leading in our lives. Through daily prayer, reading the Bible, the daily classes, required readings, service and gospel outreaches, and worship and prayer nights, the purposes of the school are without a doubt being accomplished.
This week, God has been communicating to me clearly my need for Him to do things in my life that I thought I could do alone. I am coming to understand I cannot do these things myself, only He can do them. Things that are impossible with man, but that are possible with God.
The first thing is that one night during the week I up woke in the middle of the night with “2 Timothy 2:21” in my head. I remember thinking in my half-asleep state, “I really need to look this verse up but I don’t have a Bible next to me.” And then I fell back asleep. Of course when I got up at 5:30am I forgot all that happened, but at about 7:15am as I was preparing to pray to God and read the Bible the verse came back to me!
“20 But in a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay, some for honor and some for dishonor. 21 Therefore if anyone cleanses himself from the latter, he will be a vessel for honor, sanctified and useful for the Master, prepared for every good work.”2 TIMOTHY 2:20-21
I don’t have space to explain fully what these verses mean, but basically, verse 21 is saying – Cleanse yourself from SIN, and you will be made useful for God, set apart for His purpose, not your own purpose, and you will be prepared for the good works God has planned for your life.
Sounds great! But cleanse myself from sin? Sanctify myself and make myself useful?? If I could do such a thing I wouldn’t even need to be saved, right? This verse speaks to me so clearly – I NEED God to work in my life. My need for God is so great. God does the cleansing, God does the sanctifying, but I must desire it and pursue Him.
Secondly, we’ve been reading a book called Absolute Surrender by Andrew Murray, which is really a radical call to exactly what the book is named for – absolute surrender to God. A quote in the book in which the author is communicating God’s heart for those whom He’s saved struck me…
“I have surrendered myself as God absolutely to you; I became man and died for you that I might be entirely yours. Come and surrender yourselves entirely to be mine.”
Absolute surrender?? Not just the vague, “Oh yeah I’m a Christian, I gave my heart to Jesus” type of surrender, but literally surrender every desire? Every longing? Every want of mine? ALL of me surrendered at the foot of the cross where Jesus surrendered ALL of Himself? But God! I can’t do that! I don’t have that ability within myself – I NEED God to work in my life. One might say, “But doesn’t such absolute surrender seem unattainable?” What God has shown me is that IT IS unattainable…when I am trying to do so in my own strength.
With man these things I just mentioned – cleansing sin from my life, being made into a vessel set apart and useful to God for good works, and surrendering all to God – are impossible, but with God all things are possible. I NEED God to work in my heart and in my life. I need Him more than I know. That is my conclusion this week. These lessons are spiritual truths, but I must understand them and grow in them to be an effective missionary. God wants to use me, but He doesn’t want any of me on the missions field. Does that make sense? Paul the great missionary of the New Testament was one who let God work these things in him. How else could he get stoned to death, among all the other sufferings he endured, and continue on? Because God did a great work in Him. And God wants to do that work in any who desire it…who desire Him.
So I don’t have any pictures for this since it’s a work in my heart, but hopefully sharing this encourages or even challenges someone reading this.
On a different note, this has been a great week at the school. It’s been a bit slower than the first, but looking at the schedule it’s more of a “calm before the storm” type of thing. Things are about to ramp up in a good way!
I will attach some pictures below from this week because I don’t want to leave you guys hanging. Love you all, thank you so, so much for your support which sent me here, and for your prayers which are accomplishing things in the spiritual realm. I am indebted to you all! Please continue praying for the leading of God in all the students’ lives, for God to anoint the teachers with wisdom in class, for more salvations when we do outreaches, for COVID not to affect the school in any way, and for God to work in each of us – things that only He can do!
With much love,