Hope-Squashing Thoughts to Avoid

I made it home from my two-month trip to Chile just 5 days ago. It was a family “missions trip” of sorts, and I find myself filtering through the same feelings I see first-time missions trippers coming back with – you know, those strong feelings that they want to convince you to share:

#1 A renewed appreciation for all we have here.

Yes, my bed has been cozier than ever this week, and the espresso machine is back to delivering caffeine masterpieces.

#2 A heightened awareness for those who are suffering.

This time for me, it’s not just awareness of those who are suffering in poverty. More so, it’s for those suffering with things like anxiety, illnesses, loss of loved ones, or relationship heartaches.

The guy who suffered for 38 years

I was reminded of a story in the Bible this week of a guy who had suffered far longer and far more intensely than I hope I ever have to. In John chapter 5, Jesus was at a festival in Jerusalem, and while there, he went to the famous Pool of Bethesda where a great number of disabled people (the blind, lame, and paralyzed) used to lie. At this particular pool, when the water stirred, the first one in the water was the one to get healed.

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I’m going home tomorrow.

I’m going home tomorrow.

Tomorrow marks two whole months of living in this foreign land of Santiago, Chile.

My last five posts have been about “living for Jesus lessons” that this trip has stirred up in my heart. I have a few more lessons I could share from this trip that may come later, but the thought I just can’t release from my mind today is, “I’m going home tomorrow.”

My how time flies.

Speaking of flies, there are 4 questions that have been buzzing around my heart like flies in light of this “I’m going home tomorrow” truth:

#1 Am I ready to go?

#2 What do I look forward to the most?

#3 What was my purpose for being here?

#4 Do I have any regrets?

You know where I’m going with this, don’t you? I hope it’s not too cliché, and I hope it’s not too forced. It’s actually a truth I call upon frequently, and now it’s calling me out even louder.

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Diving Deeper

He did it again. He got me way outside my comfort zone. “He” is my husband. “He” and Jesus both seem to love to ask me to do things that are scary and uncomfortable at first. Do they enjoy watching me freak out a bit? Probably. But I’m convinced they prod me because they know better than I do what’s best for me.

This past week’s DIScomfort zone for me? Bodyboarding. You know, that sport for thrill seekers who want to be lying down on the ocean waves instead of standing up on them like the surfers do.

As if rock climbing wasn’t enough. (Insert sigh and pitiful grin.)

I invite you to consider my story, along with the apostle Peter’s story found in Luke chapter 5, and to ask Jesus what fears are holding you back from the adventures He has in store for you.

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