There is a verse that keeps popping up lately. In my Bible Study. In the sermons at church. In my life, my friends lives, my parents lives. And, in the most recent book my husband and I started reading together.
"The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy.
I came that they might have life and have it abundantly."
- John 10:10
Andrew and I began reading David Platt's most recent book called "Follow Me". I have only read the introduction which is written by Francis Chan, but I have already learned so much. There is a small excerpt that grabbed me. I would like to share it:
"Probably the most memorable task Jesus gave was in Matthew 28. It stands out because of the dramatic fashion in which he gave it. He rose from the grave, and then prefaced his command with the words "all authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me." No one in his right mind would ignore the next words out of Jesus' mouth: "Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you."Jesus wanted followers from every nation on earth, so he commanded his disciples to reach them and train them. And that is exactly what they did - but this work is still not finished. He expects us to follow in their footsteps and structure our lives that our actions revolve around completing this mission. "
Life in abundance. What does this really mean? I think for some, we can get trapped into believing that its the things we own. Our house. Our car. Our travel plans. Our appearance. Our STUFF. We think that our life will be "happy" when we are comfortable and we have everything we need here on this earth. But the Bible says in Matthew 6:19-21, "Do not store up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy, and where thieves break in and steal. But store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys, and where thieves do not break in and steal; for where your treasure is, there your heart will be also."
Theres a Men's Ministry called Man In The Mirror. Their Vision is "To reach men with a credible offer of Jesus Christ, to help them grow in knowledge and love for Christ, and to equip them to serve God in the home, church, workplace, community, and world. We help men change their lives by connecting the dots between the Bible and their daily lives. We measure our profits in changed lives."
Its been a little under a year since my Father accepted a position to represent and serve as an Area Director in Central Massachusetts for Man in the Mirror. It has been an honor to watch my parents as they seek God's direction, find investors and donors to support this ministry they have been called to, and start to make changes in their lives to do this full time.
As my parents oldest child, born just a few years after they got married, I have watched as my Father has gone from job to job, position to position, working his way up from the bottom to the top, reaching a career that provided above and beyond for our family. Then, within the past year, committed to letting all of that go, humbling himself by letting others faithfully provide for my families needs, so they can serve their God-given area.
It brings me to tears.
The "sacrifice" of decades of hard work, building up a life and all their possessions, to then be called to ministry... and to give that all up. In other words... "A call to die. A call to live."
I've been calling my Mother every few days to check in on the progress. Thus far, they have sold their house, put in a few offers... only for them to fall through. And now? Well, they have 24 days to find a new home to move into. Kinda crazy... 24 days.
In a recent conversation with my Mom we exchanged encouragement, tears, honesty and love. As we both confessed that the "call to die" isn't always the easiest. That sometimes the thief who comes to destroy is so good at trying to destroy. Living a life for God doesn't mean being comfortable. My Mom said to me, "you'd never think that one of the hardest things could be the thought that the kitchen table we have been sitting around eating dinners at for years could be so hard to have to give up... because it simply won't fit in the kitchen of the new house we will be purchasing."
Isn't it so true though. We become so attached to our possessions. I don't believe its wrong to have items that mean something to us because of the beautiful memories that they bring. But, when we are called to give those things up... how will we respond?
To the house with the memories. The car with the sun roof. The kitchen table.
I am so thankful that God has given me the opportunity to watch as my parents go through this. All the tests and confusion, the letting go, the eye-opening and life altering experiences, and all the lessons they will learn... it's a testimony to how big, how great, how loving, how trustworthy, and how beautiful and abundant a life lived with God as the center of our lives can truly be.
Man in the Mirror Links:
Central Mass Facebook Page
|My Parents Home in West Boylston, MA that is currently SOLD.|