I will be a Father to you, and you will be sons and daughters to Me, says the Lord Almighty.
- 2 Corinthians 6:18

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

My calling to Compassion.

 august ninth, twenty-thirteen.

 That date holds so much significance for me. If you know me, you might've heard me talk of that day, at least in part. If you don't know me personally or haven't heard this story, then sit back, grab a cup of coffee, and listen as my heart unfolds {warning- this is going to be long}.

 August ninth. It started out like any normal summer day, lazy, slow, insignificant. But I guess God likes to use the insignificant, huh? August ninth. I remember being in my bedroom, stretched out on my bed, texting a friend. Oh, August ninth, if I'd only known what was in store for me...

 For a long time, I tried to figure out what my "calling" in life would be. I prayed and I waited. I grew frustrated and prayed and waited some more. I was confused as to why God wasn't just showing me what that calling was supposed to be. I guess I expected a voice from heaven, or a lightning bolt, some writing on the wall, or anything grand and obvious. Then somewhere along in there, I realized that by praying He would show me on my time, I was missing out on the opportunity to truly just enjoy who He is. So I started to back down on my demands prayers for God to reveal my calling and I spent the time just growing in Him and doing what all of us as Christians are called to do- love others right where we are and show them Christ.

It was then, when I became blissfully close to Him, relaxing in His presence, that I could hear His gentle whisper, even through a text message.

That afternoon on August 9th, just a few days before my birthday, found me on my knees, tears flowing down my face, overwhelmed by the Maker of the world, my heart being opened and turned inside out with a love unlike anything that I had ever experienced before. I was in awe of Him and the clarity with which He had presented Himself.

 As I said earlier, I was texting one of my friends on that summer day. It started out as a normal conversation- we were talking about mission trips and where we'd like to go. Over the summer, I had gone to North Carolina on a week-long mission trip {amazing}, he'd gone to Costa Rica, and my dad went on a Compassion-hosted trip to Ethiopia. Missions- both local and global- are a big part of my church. I'm so thankful to be a part a church that is passionate about spreading the gospel to the ends of the earth.
Anyways, in light of the trip my dad had taken to Ethiopia, I said something about wanting to go on a trip with Compassion International. It wasn't really a significant text, just something I thought I'd enjoy. My friend typed some reply and I said "I also think it would be really cool to work for Compassion International," then about two seconds later I typed "Ya know, I just now thought of that. But I think it would be something I'd want to do." And somewhere between that first text about Compassion and the last one, God laid on my heart with such clarity exactly what I was supposed to do. My next text said "Do you believe that God can call someone to do something they haven't even thought of..." To which my friend simply replied, "I do. Very much."

 And that afternoon, God's heart began to unfold before me in a way I never expected. Oh, He had placed me on a wild, blessed journey that I never imagined being on. On that August day He so clearly told me, "They are loved. By Me and by you. Show them that." My heart was opened to the world and the children of the world. All those little countries on the map became very real and personal, because they signified children. Precious, broken children. I fell in love with Compassion International and the work they are doing that day, but more importantly- I fell in love with the children who so desperately need someone to care.

 I didn't know what was coming for me that day. I didn't know that in the months to follow, I would be broken and oh so joyful, my heart being opened more than I thought possible. I will continue to be broken. It's when I'm broken for something that I'm moved to do something. These children are breaking me in ways I never expected, because God opened my heart wide for them.

 Now this story isn't about me. I don't want to sound like some super-Christian. I don't mean to imply that I have it all together and everything in the story of my life is perfect. Because it's not. It's not about me. It's about God, and the work He has done in me and through me. I don't have it all together. My life is a story of broken glass, put together piece by piece by my Creator, to make something far more beautiful than I could ever piece together myself. And I want to keep living every day in that divine mesh of broken and beautiful.

 God has placed a passion and calling on my life that goes far beyond Compassion International and reaches to the very hearts of the children living in poverty. Yes, I still have a very direct calling to Compassion, but with that comes a love and a brokenness for each and every one of the children. He has given me this passion not so I can somehow make myself superior, but so that He can be exalted. And that's what I strive to do each day. Exalt His name. Love and be broken. Live so close to Him that I don't miss Him in the insignificant. Do something right where I am for the children of the world.

 You can do something, too. You don't have to go out of the country to do something for children in poverty. There are kids who need someone to care, right outside your own door. You can sponsor a child from Compassion. Trust me, they become way more than $38 a month and a picture on your fridge. I went into sponsorship thinking I was the one doing the good work, but my sweet girl came around and blessed me far more than I ever imagined. If you want to change a life and be changed by that life, sponsor a child. You aren't going to regret it. Click here to go to Compassion's webpage. Pray about it. Pray over the children. Perhaps God will place one of those kids into your hands and your heart. He did with me, and I am forever changed by it.

“unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing is going to get better. it's not.”
dr. seuss

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