This past weekend Luke had the opportunity to preach at a fellow Harvest! It's a fired up body of believers. I was greatly challenged by the message ... like yesterday all day i was thinking about it, battling it, seeing if i could get out of it... yep, that's how God's Word is. So glad I can't get out of it that I need to live clothed by Jesus Christ.
the first point of the message was Wake up! and i was thinking about the fact that I WOKE UP spiritually ten years ago this week...
by a few crazy circumstances i ended up on a missions trip with this church my family had started attending. I had just finished freshman year of high school (wow, can't believe it's been ten years) and I was still finding my bearings... who i would spend time with... what i was gonna be about... and where my place was. So, i got on the bus and i'm not gonna lie... there were a few cute boys. i was excited to hang out with them and of course the girls too. ;)
my main job for the week was to cook for our group of 50. this may sound like a small task but when it's at least 100 degrees daily (which i don't have to imagine right now because that's the temperature outside) and the kitchen is about 10x10, oh and there's five other members of the team.. well it's quite a task. but, as we got the hang of it we realized we did have a bit of time on our hands so we were assigned to shovel shale out of the missionary's driveway in 100 degree heat and well... at that point i was like the rest of this week better be fun or what the heck am i doing here?!
it was midweek that I was getting the hang of the spiritual thing we did at night.. i was getting to know the songs and i wasn't the last one to find the book of the bible that the youth pastor was preaching out of.. so on the outside i was looking pretty good. but on the inside i was crumbling... who was i, did i really believe what i said i did for so long, what was my life going to be about?
the crumbling looked more like the ugly cry that night. IT WAS UGLY. but oh so beautiful at that same time because the facade finally came off. everything wasn't perfect. I realized that I did need and want and believe that Christ was Lord of my life. I wanted to put off Worldliness and put on Jesus Christ. This was a moment i will never forget.
On the trip i felt really convicted to write down kind of a list of convictions for myself... things i would do and wouldn't do so i wouldn't just 'end up' in a bad situation. I wrote it in orange marker and asked the youth pastor to look through it with me. He sarcastically teased me about the orange marker but really encouraged me to stick to these convictions and he prayed for me.
there were many more shenanigans from that trip but that was the foretelling of the christian life for me... because believing in Christ is easy but it's hard to live it out. I have found that in the last ten years. I've been through a few major trials. I've had hard conversations. I've, well I could write a whole long list of the last ten years. it's been full, and exciting and at times I was like 'where the heck are you taking me God' but he has brought me through every single time. not by just a hair but always in his timing and the circumstances he has for me.
Now being a youth pastor's wife I see students making the hard decision to live for Christ. I always think... you will never regret that choice. I am so thankful for our youth pastor & that my husband gets to be a youth pastor & am so thankful that our life does have purpose. It's not easy but God always gives us the grace we need to make it through.
If I would have known what those convictions written in orange marker had meant for my life... wow. i believe they saved me from grief and heart ache.. much of it. but that wasn't anything in me... only Christ can do that in someone.
so, ten years. yea, let's keep walking Lord:)
oh and the trip was to oklahoma... thus the title of the post... oh and i am not sure i will ever go back there;)