Wednesday, September 8, 2010

asia bound

i'm going back!

tomorrow morning i leave my house at 4:15 am.  from there i will travel for almost 2 full days (and nights!) to south east asia with maggie, the wonderful 16 year old daughter of friends.

i am so excited to head back to myanmar and go to cambodia for the first time.  so excited to be with our workers there and encourage all of our M's in asia at our regional conference in cambodia.  cannot wait to work with all of the M's kids at the conference - including meeting several of the kids for the first time, since they've been born since i saw their families last!

for the conference to be uplifting to all of our workers from the asia region.

for wisdom & rest for myself - so i can be an encouragement to all i encounter.

safety in travel - and sanity!  i have a 19 hour flight there and a 23 hour flight back (each has a refuel stop, but no real layover).  i'm honestly dreading these...please pray for me to rest in God's peace and that i actually get some sleep.

matt boden, my friend who's wonderful wife, kylee, died earlier this year is traveling to the asia conference as well, bringing his youngest two children with him.  last year he and kylee, with 1.5 year old sarai,  traveled to cambodia to see if it was a potential opportunity for their family.   matt is returning to those they visited - most of his closest friends in the mission are in asia countries as well.  he is going to help with the conference and to allow others the opportunity to grieve with him and get the chance to meet baby Caleb.  he will be traveling with a 3 year old & 6 month old alone, so i'm sure he would appreciate prayers for the travel and the grieving process with our nationals & M's in asia.

that God will bless my time with Maggie!  And for all the relationships I'll be renewing.  That I will be willing to be used in any way and have my eyes open to God's working!

love you all - see you in 2.5 weeks!

Saturday, September 4, 2010

internet Jesus and the search for answers

“look at me. i need you to give me a verbal answer.  looking away from me silently is not an answer.  even if you don’t know, you still need to respond audibly.”

i found myself saying these words to one of my kids this week.  homeschooling has started back up and all week i’ve noticed that when i ask Micah a question he didn’t know how to answer or thought that the answer wasn’t desirable – he would simply look away in silence.  it was driving me batty.  so by thursday i sat toe to toe with him and laid it out for him.  i needed a response.

funny how God teaches us lessons.  tonight my week with micah and my life group conversation came colliding. we were talking about the one question we would ask God if we could.  most of us assumed that we would be in heaven to do this asking. 

i mused why i, myself, pictured myself questioning God in heaven at the end of my life, rather than on earth, now.

i realized i wanted an audible answer. 

i want the easy way.  the quick direct answer from God, please.

you see, even with Micah, i can usually figure out what he’s thinking without him giving me an audible response – i just have to try harder.  i have to watch his non-verbal cues.  i have to know him.  if i try, i can see when he’s frustrated, disappointed or mad.  it just takes work. 

it takes relationship.

so it goes with God.  i want “internet God.” instant answers.  instant help, when i want it.  

i don’t want to ask God a question and then wait for an answer.  i want it now!  just like the bratty Veruca Salt in Willy Wonka, “don’t care how, i want it now!”  i become a bad egg.  i convince myself that i’m not made to wait for answers.  i’ll pray and 6 seconds later i’m off, frustrated that God hasn’t spoken yet.

yet, there is no relationship in “internet Jesus.”  relationships take work.  and it’s beautiful when a friend “learns you.”  when you understand them – like me understanding that Micah sometimes needs to be silent while I need to slow down my need for instant answers from him and just be around him – you get something far deeper and greater than you could imagine.  

i want answers but i don't want to wait for them.  even more so, i don't want to invest in the relationship with God, to understand who He is.  i'm a child of my generation - microwave food, internet, iphones, atms.  i live in a world that moves fast.  i get antsy when the internet connection is slow or i can't text someone.  yet i try to demand the same of God.  God who took 9 months to painstakingly form me in my mother's womb.  

God is more than worthy to be savored.