19 October 2017

My 16th anniversary as a missionary living in Kenya; "How to Stay in When it's Hard" (by Jim Bloom)

If we want to stay in hard places for the sake of God’s kingdom, our hearts need to be captivated by the immensity of God and his redemptive purposes in the world. Only that breathtaking vision can hold us in contexts of immense pain and seeming hopelessness.

If you’ve lost your vision, fix your eyes again on Jesus. Ask God to ravage your heart again for a glimpse of what lies just beyond the rough edges of the world.

It is a vision of glory beyond the horizon that keeps us going when the accumulation of disappointments, losses, and seeming failures threaten to kill our zeal for kingdom-building.

We are impoverished
without our brothers and sisters
from different ethnicities, cultures,
and socio-economic backgrounds
joining us at the table of the Lord’s banquet. 

Not just in eternity, but now in our present experience.

Yes, there is labor, toil, and fatigue in a hard field. But God loves to provide us valuable resources and spiritual refreshment in the people who live in these difficult places. They must be at the table with us if we will be complete.

Yes, we can do all things through Christ who strengthens us, but Paul learned both how low he could go and how much he could abound through much testing (Philippians 4:12–13). Therefore, as we seek to follow Jesus into a hard place, we must go with a deep humility, admitting that our knowledge of our heart is limited, trusting him to lead and sustain us wherever we go - and stay.

Jim Bloom, U.S. Director for InnerCHANGE
How to Stay in When it's Hard
(Above are excerpts. Click link for full article.)

- - -
Your longevity in mission may very well depend upon your leaning into the promises of God. For when you look to God you will have faith and when you lean into the promises you will have hope and where there are faith and hope, there too will be love. And love remains with the place and people.

~ Michael Duncan, missionary to Asia's urban poor
      (quoted in Bloom's article)

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