Saturday, October 19, 2013

"What am I doing here?"

A couple of weeks ago, we had a talk from Alejandro Rodriguez, the leader of YWAM Argentina. The talk was aimed at the new Discipleship Training School students, and he told them, "One night, you will be lying in your bunkbed, staring at the bunk over you, and you will wonder what you are doing here. And you will want to pack up all of your things in the middle of the night and run away. Don't worry. We've all been there."

I have that thought sometimes. Not necessarily when I am in my bunkbed, but when I am walking down the street and my Oyster card is empty and I've just seen a post on Facebook about a former classmate buying a new house, or when I am wondering if that ache in my mouth is a cavity and if I can make it until I go home next summer before getting it looked at. And I think about how easy it would be to get a flight home, to be picked up at the airport, to get a job and a car and a boyfriend to take me on drives to the beach on weekends. To be the only person sleeping in my bedroom at night. I think those things, and then I immediately feel guilty, because I am living in London, one of the biggest cities in the world. I get to do all of my arts every day, if I want to, and I get to use them to investigate different aspects of the Creator of the Universe. I get to use art to tell people about my Beloved. How can I have thoughts of running back to the life I am used to?

Last night, Angelica Vega, the leader of my counselling school, spoke to the base about our callings. She used Jeremiah 20 as an example, and verse nine really stuck out to me. Jeremiah says, "But if I say, 'I will not mention him or speak any more in his name,' his word is in my heart like a fire, a fire shut up in my bones. I am weary of holding it in; indeed I cannot."

A calling from God is not something that we choose to do because it seems cool to us. We don't choose to frolic across an ocean and share a room with three other people just because it seems like a cool adventure. That kind of motivation will keep you motivated for a few weeks at the most. It does not help you keep sacrificing your rights to a salary, possessions, space, or time. It does not help you concede to God, giving in to Him when you have said, "Okay, God, here is the line," and He says, "No, keep going. Keep giving."

God's call for me was put in me in my mother's womb. That's what it says in Jeremiah 1. I did not have a choice in my calling, but I was made perfectly for it. People tease me for my height, but really, I fit fantastically into bunk beds. Because God's call for my life was written on my heart before I took my first breath, it is not something to which I can say no. I could go home. I could get a car and a job and even a hunky boyfriend to drive me to Tybee Island on the weekends, but I would not be happy. I would be suffocating, because I am called here, to London, to a bunk bed and a street with corner shops run by Muslim men and an Oyster card that takes continual praying over so that I have enough money in it to take the bus to church.

I don't think that it is wrong to some days think, "I could get on a plane and go home and sleep in my own room and go to the dentist," or, "I could go home and get a job and not have to worry so much about money." How many times did I think, "I could get on a plane and go to a foreign country and learn a new culture and bring Jesus to them," when I lived in South Carolina? There's a comfort in realising that the life we are in is not the only one we could live.

But the life that I am living is the life that I am called to live, the one in which I can daily see Christ with me like a mighty warrior (Jeremiah 20:11). And I will stay and fight, and sleep in a bunk bed, and inherit my housemates' hand-me-downs, and sing praises to the Lord who had the amazing foresight to send me to this city and to write this adventure on my heart.

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