A recent message for the cross-cultural missions group I am with, in light of some of our discussions…
There is a little something that has lingered on my heart from a couple meetings ago to share. When we were talking about delving into a season or life of mission, I had made references about being prepared for this type of service, likening it to being a fit or prepared wineskin, so-to-speak, as the Bible refers to. I think it is possible that it could have been a little misunderstood, so allow me to clarify.
The main point I had in mind by “being prepared” was coming to a place of internal surrender or availability to hear enough to field the possibility of serving or responding to the call to missions, or to at least pay attention to the drawing of the Holy Spirit towards it.
What I did not mean was that we would be without resistance in some way, or that there would be no obstacles within. I did not intend to infer some level of fearlessness, holiness, or otherwise perfect path to responding to what we perceive the Holy Spirit drawing us into.
Contrarily, I believe His callings or open doors or leadings come no matter what the current condition or situation of our lives. At any given time when God’s voice or direction or will is perceived, we may in fact have initial unwillingness, or we may not even agree with God. We may have our doubts, fears, distractions or other things in our lives we feel are too much of an obstacle to follow or even consider it. We may have areas of our lives that are not where they should be, and we may not even consider ourselves worthy of the call.
I do not believe we could ever be prepared enough, holy enough, unafraid enough, etc. I do believe it is far more a matter of surrender in spite of fear, imperfection, or other internal or external resistances or obstacles. And that surrender, where our willingness to obey or respond positively to Him outweighs our desire to avoid or not pursue, is the secret I finally am understanding more clearly than ever before in my life.
As we likely know, surrender is a lifelong process, so–speaking of celebrating little victories, as we’ve talked about in our group time–I believe we can celebrate even when the will to follow only slightly out-measures our resistance. Because even if it’s only a quarter-step, it is a step nonetheless.