When God Gives It Pours
When God gives, it’s pours. “A life of service is a life of joy.”
God is so generous to us, and when we live in His services, we will experience countless blessings. This is what I’ve been learning through my recent experiences as a nurse missionary in the Masai Mara of Kenya.
Some people think it is hard to be a missionary: to leave your family and friends behind and go serve. To give up being paid in the United States, to sacrifice maybe cleanliness, or favorite foods, to give up luxury to live in the footsteps of other people groups and cultures.
I'm not going to lie to you, sometimes being an overseas missionary is hard. For me some of the hardest things are loneliness, cold bucket showers, and the constant feeling of being unclean and unhealthy. Sometimes I miss the fast pace of America or being able to go to a restaurant. Other times I feel like I'm missing out on doing things with my friends because I am so far away. I try to call home or call my friends but there is always the barrier of presence. Other times I feel like locals in Kenya don't understand my expectations because of cultural differences.
There are challenges to being a missionary anywhere. I know there are sacrifices that must be made. But I think time and time again, when you choose to follow God and serve where-ever He wants you— the blessings far outweigh any “sacrifices” you might make. You can never out-give God. So when you start being generous with your money, your time, your relationships— the blessings just keep accumulating.
There are many ways to give and be a missionary. You don’t have to go overseas to represent Jesus and choose to live a life that witnesses about His love. Sometimes it is even harder to be a missionary in the states than it is overseas. When you are overseas, people recognize your work. People tell you “thank you for your service” or “good job”; sometimes you see the results of your labor quicker.
But when you are in America, sometimes the little things you try to do can get overlooked. It can get easy to get burnt out doing the sometimes mundane jobs of daily living. For me it is even hard to love each patient in the hospital when there are so many needs and so high expectations of nurses in the states.
No matter where you are working or living, whether God calls you to serve your neighbor or parents or a culture overseas, when we choose to love others and give to God we will experience more love and blessings ourselves. Sometimes our current work, or situations may be difficult and it may be hard to be faithful and make the right decisions. But God is watching us from above with love, and He will richly bless us for our service for Him. I just want to encourage you that no matter where you are in the world, and whatever work you are doing for God, not to give up. That God is faithful. He is stronger than anything the enemy can throw at us; and He will constantly provide for us- His children.
Colossians 1: 9 For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of His will through all wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please Him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God.
If God is calling you to go overseas and help serve others, I totally recommend that you go. There are so many things you can learn, so many ways your perspective is widened, and your character and walk with God will be challenged. I've never regretted any mission trip or opportunity I've invested in to follow God somewhere else.
Sometimes though God calls us to stay put where we are- maybe in the states- in a difficult work situation or with a tough family issue. And I encourage you to have patience. God can use you the most- where He currently has you. He wants you to live in the presence. So trust Him to provide and use you right where you are at.
And if you are waiting on God, planning to be a missionary, I encourage you to start preparing now. Prepare your heart, prepare your mind, teach yourself self-discipline. Then have faith, God will take you where and when He is ready for you. And it will be an amazing adventure =)
As always, I'd love to hear your thoughts and comments and I appreciate your support and reading this blog! Praying God's blessings over your life.