When someone gives us a mission, most of us want to understand how everything works out. We want the reasons for the mission.
When it is God that is giving us the mission, I think we are afraid that He is going to ask us to sell all of our possessions, leave our friends and family and move to a remote village in Africa to live in a mud hut. He might, but it’s unlikely.
From personal experience, the mission God has for your life might not make sense. I think you can probably count on it not making sense.
The past 10 years of my life has been one surprise after another as I seek God’s mission for my life.
- Danielle and I led a team on a 10-day trip to Thailand in February 2007. When we returned home, we both felt God leading us to look into going back as volunteers for up to a year. That meant I had to quit my job that I had for 11 years. We had to decide what to do with our house. We also didn’t know if we had the money to do this. In a nutshell, this didn’t make sense.
- We did move to Thailand for six months. If we had not purchased a return ticket, we might still live there! But we did return to the States fully expecting to move back to Thailand within a year. That didn’t happen mainly because of Danielle’s father’s illness and passing. But in 2010 we thought it was time to make the move. Our hearts were still set on mission work in Thailand. We really thought that this was God’s mission for our lives.
- But…we sat in a mission conference in February 2010 with a three-week trip to Thailand planned in March. We listened to a presentation from the Aaron Ivey band about adoption and specifically foster care. We walked out of that session with heads spinning. What we heard God telling us made no sense at all. How could we do mission work in Thailand and foster children in Austin, Texas at the same time.
- We now still live in the Austin area. We have one adopted son through foster care. And we are still involved with mission work in Thailand, just not by living there. Honestly, it still doesn’t make sense to me.
Honestly, adopting a child from a hard place has been the hardest thing I have done. Sometimes I think that moving and adjusting to life in a foreign country would be easier.
Should my offering to God cost me nothing?
A couple of weeks ago I sat at another foster care and adoption conference listening to a moving main talk by Christie Erwin. She stated that God’s call on our life may not make sense. It may even involve grief or sacrifice.
Wait! If I am obedient to God’s mission for me, you’re telling me that pain and sacrifice might go with it? That just doesn’t sound right.
Then she went on to ask, “Should your offering to God cost you nothing?”
As all good speakers, she paused for several moments for that statement to sink in.
When we embrace God’s mission for us even when it doesn’t make sense, when it causes grief and pain, when we sacrifice comfort, relationships, and sometimes wealth, it shatters legalism and hypocrisy.
Question: Do you hesitate to embrace God’s mission for you when it doesn’t make sense?
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