June 7, 2012

what i've learned so far...

downtown Los Menucos, aka Curi Leuvú

We've only been here eight months. We are by no means experts. On anything. We only know our own experience, what we are living. What I will tell you is that we've learned a few things since we've been here in Argentina, on the mission field.

There is nothing like missions to bring it all to the surface. I am amazed at the junk that God is revealing in us. Ew.

God has sifted and shaken and pruned and cut, cut, cut, and opened eyes and brought conviction and has made us see things I know would have taken years, not months, back home. I want to say I am thankful, because that would be the correct "Christian" response. I guess I am.


I am.

But it's been ugly. Sin likes to hide. It likes the dark. Kicks and screams when dragged into the light.

That's pleasant for no one.

There is nothing like missions to bring what is hidden and dark to the light.

There is nothing like missions to bring you to your knees and make you cry like a baby.

There is nothing like missions to show you that YOU are the worst sinner in need of salvation, God help your soul.

There is nothing like it.

There is nothing like living on the edge, and still feeling like you take up too much space.

There is nothing like leaving it all for Christ and feeling like most people don't think you are sacrificing all that much, and the rest seem to have forgotten you.

There is nothing, and I mean nothing, so hard as simply trying to do what is right, and being criticized or misunderstood for it. {The Christian Condition, right?}

There is nothing like doing what is right, and not getting the same thing in return. Day after day. Month after month. Year after year?

There is nothing like feeling like the very people that should love and support you, don't. Won't.

There is nothing like sitting at the computer at one in the morning, pouring your heart out to cyberspace, because that's all there is.

There is nothing like missions to teach you, really teach you, all about grace. Not the grace thrown around in Christian circles - but REAL grace.

grace noun \ˈgrās\
unmerited divine assistance given humans, approval, favor, mercy, pardon, a special favor, privilege, clemency, a temporary exemption, reprieve... {ah, reprieve}
~ Merriam-Webster

Oh, if people only knew!, I sometimes think to myself. 

Really, there is nothing like missions. There is nothing like being in a foreign country, having left all you know and love and that is familiar, to do what is good and right where no one particularly makes one iota of a big deal about all your "sacrifice".  The consensus seems to be, "Yeah, whatever spoiled, first-world people. You're really suffering living here. WE live here, WE know suffering. You can go back to your first-world country, WE live here. WE know."

Really, there is NOTHING like having only the Lord, and no. one. else.

You know what I've learned since being here?

Missions means nothing.

Following the Lord means SOMEthing.

We are not called to follow a cause. We are called to follow a Person.

Truth. Love. That's all that matters.

Do that and you fulfill the Law.


Annie said...

Wow. I don't know what to say. I wish I knew what to comment here but I have absolutely no experience. But I want to say SOMETHING because this is an amazing post. Well, I guess I have had experience in grace. I mean GRACE in extremely difficult situations in my life when I knew that ONLY grace was where my mind could swim. You know, when I got to that point in my life, when everything was slipping away, to just have Him, was often so lovely, but ugly getting there too. Because none of me could do anything to change what was going on and I had to completely rely on Him. Those times of difficulty have always passed and resolved finally and much of the ME part has crept back in and taken over again. But I guess I can somehow reach into my mind and relate to how you must function when I think of those times. Not exactly the same, but similar abandon. Amazing post!

Mary Tornetta said...

Chris your honesty is so refreshing. Please hold on to that. When I hear Christians talking about how easy everything is since they accepted Jesus I wonder how can that be? Jesus said come unto to me all who are weary and heavy laden and i will give you rest. I'm looking forward to it.

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