Do not forget in the darkness what you have been promised in the light.
It happens all too easily. A rough day (or several in a row this week...) and I forget. We all do. It becomes to easy to look around and think. "Why? Why do I do this?" "Why take one more child, why live with less so we can give to others more, why leave family and friends to go to a land of strangers, WHAT am I doing here?" I do not usually forget the answer, "For Jesus. Because He called me to this." But far to often I repeat that over and over to myself and forget what it MEANS. It means that it has been granted to me, it is my PRIVILEDGE, not only to believe in Him, but also to suffer for Him. (Philippians 1:29) That suffering is not alone, but is with Him, and oh what a priviledge it is just to be able to be in His presence, to share that with my sweet Savior. That I do it for JESUS, "who being in very nature God did not consider equality with God something to be grasped but made himself NOTHING taking the very nature of a servant being made in human likeness. And being found in appearance as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient to death— even death on a cross! Therefore God exalted him to the highest place and gave him the name that is above every name, that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow, in heaven and on earth and under the earth, and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father!" (Liking Philippians today 2:5-11)
It is so simple, and yet this weekend it seemed hard to remember.
The anger of Friday melted into grief, into crying out to the Lord and asking Him how I could more effectively serve His people. As God would have it, the day after Friday is Saturday, and there really is no better affirmation than 350 children flooding through my gate to worship the Lord and eat chicken together. As satan would have it, later that night I found that several people who I have grwon to love and trust have cheated and lied to and stolen from me. The details are not important, but needless to say, I ended the day feeling betrayed and alone, again questioning, "What is it all for." I woke up (did I ever sleep?) Sunday morning to diahreah all over EVERYTHING in Grace and Jane's bed. (I know that is kind of a gross thing to share, but I am trying to paint a picture of my destparation for you here ;) ). The girls had decided to make the best of the situation and proceed to pain everything in the room with poop. Great. After deciding that church was more important than poop, I threw all the sheets in the bathtub and rounded up the gang, but only after packing up all Michael's clothes, lots of long-life milk and multivitamins for him. He was going home.
I cried through the service at the thought of having to take him back. This precious child that I had so fallen in love with going back to a place where there was no garuntee that his mother would not simply sell the milk we sent with Him. And God spoke so plainly. He did not appologize for my heartache, even better, He shared it. He KNEW. Because the pain in my heart at having to give up a little boy that I have loved for a month did not even come close to the pain it cause Him to give up His only Son. And He did that for me. The pain in my hear that felt so unbearable was just a fraction of what he felt when He sent His ONE AND ONLY CHILD to save us, to allow us to spend eternity with Him. Wow.
That is what it means that I do this for Jesus. HE loved me first. I love Him back. And sometimes it hurts. But even then it is pure joy to even be considered worthy to share in His suffering. That is the promise. Not that He is sorry that it hurts. But that He sees. That He knows. That He is here with us.