Many of you reading this blog have seen some of the anguish that came out of our time in France. I’ve never really told the story in its entirety, and I probably won’t for many years to come. It’s still too raw. But as I continue to process it, the Lord reminded me in several ways this week that it’s time to turn my countenance heavenward and begin to see the good that came from our time there. The following is my act of obedience, thanking God for what He’s done since France.
- Our children speak French. This will stay with them the rest of their lives.
- Our children love Jesus and want to share Him with the whole, wide world.
- Our family is closer because of what we went through together.
- Our marriage weathered the time in France. Not perfectly, but intact. Thank You Jesus.
- I am broken. Which is a good thing because ministry happens best through a broken, humble, pliable heart.
- I learned that God holds my reputation and my heart in His hands. No matter who misunderstands or judges my heart, God is the One who really knows. I can rest in His shelter, bask in His favor.
- I am not as capable as I thought I was. That’s a painful discovery. But it’s a good one. I’m frail. Needy. Incapable. Sin-prone. But oh, the grace of God in the midst of all that realization stuns me.
- God has gifted me with loads of empathy, which can be great but also must be managed. Sometimes I allowed my empathy to take over, which caused me to crumble under the weight of everyone’s pain.
- I feel blessed to say this: We obeyed God by going to France. We may not see fruit from it. We may not see tangible results. But that does not matter. God does not call us to success, but obedience. I truly believe God smiles on those who obey, even when it hurts or doesn’t turn out the way we expect it to.
- Spiritual warfare is real and must be taken into account in every area of life. The enemy comes to steal, kill, and destroy us. Especially if we are taking the Gospel into a dark place. I am more prepared now.
I sense there are far more things to revel in, but this is enough for today. What about you? What trials have you endured? Why not make a list today of what beauty God brought from the ashes of that circumstance? Our God is a big God who takes the darkness and dissipates it with His light. What a mighty, mighty God we serve. I’m humbled and amazed.