The long-awaited journey has begun. We left Napa a week ago and it was with many tears and sad goodbyes but also with much anticipation about what the Lord is doing in this new season of our lives. The whole week before we left was so surreal. Everything that we had been planning and preparing for was actually happening. In the last few days our family and friends surrounded us, supported us, fed us, prayed for us, cried with us, and encouraged us in our calling. They helped us toss, sort and pack. They loved our children, toted them around, and took them swimming. We were so blessed and encouraged not only by the people near to us but by all the people that came out to say goodbye and to wish us well. We really saw the significance of the Body of Christ, coming together, from all different walks of life, to rally around us and to send us off. It was a humbling experience and we truly felt loved.
The Lord very specifically called us to give away, sell, and donate the contents of our lives. We packed up only the essentials and even some of those things were cut as we loaded up our van. We had to make the tough decisions on what was truly important. What could we not live without? The Lord really gave us a picture of what we were doing through the story of Gideon. Gideon starts out with an army of 35,000, and the Lord says “nope, that is too many.” So, He pares down Gideon’s army. The Lord looks again and says “nope, still too many”. The Lord eventually pares down Gideon’s army to 300 men and they win the battle. We would sort through things and set aside what we thought were the essentials and then we would realize that we still had too much. So, we would pare down again and make some more cuts. Eventually, we made it out with just a van full of the essentials. But through it all the Lord is teaching us that all we really need in life is Him. As Christians we so often say, “all we need is Jesus”, but is that really true? Do we really only need Jesus? We are learning, at a deeper level than ever before, Jesus really is enough. Like the song says “you can have all this world, just give me Jesus”. Jesus increasingly has become our hearts desire and our one true focus. He is teaching us that we can only be dependent on Him and Him alone.
Fast forward a few days and we had another tough lesson on Jesus being enough. While visiting the Oregon coast with our good friends, our van went down. It decided that it was not going to move from the parked position and shift into gear. After attempting to shift it, jiggle wires and poke at it, no matter what we did we were unable to shift it out of park. Essentially, we were stuck, all ten of us, with no way to go anywhere. The feeling of helplessness was ruling the hour. McKenna came in with a great suggestion to lay hands on the van and pray! So, so we did. Afterwards, two of us walked down the road to some construction workers. We explained the situation and one of the men said that he would send someone to help us. Praise the Lord, the man that was sent was able to get the van in gear! Through this experience God opened our eyes to the spiritual significance of the situation and we felt the Lord reminding us, “You can’t do this on your own.” We couldn’t get the van unstuck on our own, we needed help. The Lord is constantly reminding us that we cannot do this journey without Him. We need Him and our dependence must be upon Him. As God showed Gideon what he needed for battle, we were reminded that God will show us what we need to be victorious too if we will trust and obey Him. We hope and pray that the reminder we received will also impact you. When it comes down to it none of us can do life on our own. You can’t live for God without trusting Him, without surrendering to Him and allowing Him to lead, guide, and provide for you. Being in the place of helplessness is not a bad place to be, it’s just a tough place to be. But there is nothing like watching God provide just what you need at the exact time that you need it!
We still have a long way to go. There is still six more weeks until we arrive at the school in Oaxaca. We are sure we will have many more obstacles and challenges to face along the way but we know that, like Gideon, we only need faith in God to be able to stand up against any challenges that we face.
Until next time,