Thursday, September 2, 2010

When God Leads Us Out of Our Comfort Zone: Matthew 6: 25-34

I love it when the Lord uses a sermon, daily devotional, or other seemingly random encounter to speak directly to me.

Throughout this summer, the Lord has used all of the above means to get across the message that He trusts me to step out of my comfort zone and take a huge leap of faith.  Being the control freak that I am, I usually like to have a battle plan with every worst case scenario covered and a handful of contingency plans to boot.  However, God is leading our family down a road with many unknowns.  Answers may not be found in textbooks.  There may not be a tried and true method to handling this new and exciting chapter.  Our family may take on a whole new look and feel.  After months of prayer, consideration, and looking for answers, we decided to expand our adoption request to include two children, with one child being eleven years old!  This is where we thought God wanted to us be from the beginning, but we began this process overly-cautious.  Because this was not God's desire, He used every avenue of approach to reach us and get us to where He wanted us.

Bible Study: 
This summer, our Women's Ministry completed Margaret Feinberg's study, "Scouting The Divine".  Each and every week there was mention of caring for orphans and widows;  however two messages in Scripture stood out and resonating in my heart and mind.  The first was Deuteronomy 24: 14-22.  This Old Testament verse commands us to not glean to edge of our fields, but to make sure we leave some for the widows, orphans, and foreigners.  The second message is found in Matthew 6:25-34.   In these verses, Jesus is telling us not to worry.  In verses 25-27 Jesus says, "Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? 26Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? 27Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?"

After letting those verses sink in, the things that worried us were reduced to silly nuances.  How could we think that just because our children's college savings plans and activity funds might not look like we expected or that we might have a bridge a communication and culture gap that God would not provide for us.  The things that worry us do not worry God.  He leads, we follow, He provides.  As we open our hearts and follow His plan for us, our spiritual blessings increase.

Not-So-Random Encounters:
God has placed in our paths numerous ordinary people doing extraordinary things.  A regular family who has adopted four children within a two year time frame, two of these children with special needs.  A young pregnant woman who chose to spend her summer in Africa doing mission work, away from all of the creature comforts and prenatal care she would receive at home.  Another woman who chose to sell all of her belongings and move herself and her son to Africa, not knowing what each day would bring.  Each of these stories provided encouragement and helped us believe that yes, we too, are able to ask God to use our hands, feet, heart, and home to do His work.

I find is almost humorous that the things we stress about or are fearful of become the exact things we find comfort  and peace in once we trust in the Lord.  As soon as we understood where God was taking us and said, "Yes, Lord!"  every bit of worry or concern practically vanished.  In its place lives pure joy, excitement, anticipation, and delight.  Thank you, Lord for trusting us, leading us, and providing for our every need!

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