When Faith Hits Reality

For those of you who are checking in to see where we are at with the move, be sure to check out Vanessa's blog she just posted before I am putting this one up. It is really a good post. As most of you know, Vanessa really is the one who is doing such an incredible job keeping everyone abreast of what is happening with us with this blog. I (Greg) seldom have time to post things on this blog, but I am working on it.

I have to say that I have such an incredible wife. Vanessa has been a blessing to me from the first day I had the undeserved honor of calling her my wife. God knew what he was doing - although I pray it has not been too hard on her!

I was spending some time praying this evening after everyone went to bed. This is such an incredibly exciting time for all of us. Doing the will of the Father is EVERYTHING it is cracked up to be. I cannot begin to tell you how many times over the past weeks as we have been preparing for our transition that the Lord has stepped in, made himself known, and blessed us to the point of tears. HE IS FOR REAL! And as our faith is hitting reality, GOD IS THERE.

I wanted to post quickly to just make it a public thing that I love my family to death. With all of the preparations that planning that has gone into making this move a reality, my entire family has pitched in, been a part of helping, shown incredible maturity and willingness to help. They are all wonderful.

As we have been preparing for this trip, it is so easy to see how we are doing on our packing. The bags get full, we weight them and get them as close to 50 pounds as possible and move to the next bag or trunk. Each of the kids needed shots, clothes, diapers (well, I think we have a few out of them now!), shoes, underwear (yes, we all still wear them), socks, and a thousand other things. We have had lists, and gone through each one with diligence and steadfastness. It has actually been quite smooth realizing that we had to pack for 13 people. But in the midst of it, the thing that has been the hardest, is keeping focused on Christ.

As I sit here tonight and write I have just finished praying, no begging God that I have not lost sight of the most important thing we had to prepare for...the spiritual battle ahead. It is my responsibility as the head of the home to make sure my family is ready. And many days I have feared that there is just not enough time to prepare. But God knows what he is doing, and he knows he is using damaged, unfit vessels for the work He has called us to. We realize how weak we are, but in Him we have strength to continue on. But the question remains - are we ready? We are not just going to Liberia to do some nice humanitarian projects that bless those we are helping and us in the meantime...we are heading into a warzone! The enemy is not happy and has made it very known to us over the past few months in ways that would have scared me off a year ago.

Liberia has the remains of a wartorn country from years of civil war, but God has brought us through the fear of the physical danger - HE IS IN CONTROL and will protect us. We are stepping onto soil filled with disease and sickness - but God has given us a heart full of love for the Liberian people that far outweights the potential danger of disease and sickness. We are going into an unknown culture, but God has given us hearts full of joy to live among these wonderful people of Liberia and become like family to them and learn from them. We are not scared of the physical dangers or sickness any longer. The Lord has removed that fear. But I continue to fear (in a healthy way) the spiritual battle ahead of us. I fear complacency, I fear compromise, I fear timidity and spiritual weakness. But I fear these things, and will continue to fear these things because I want to see God move through our family. I want to see Him glorified through our service. I want Him to know we love him above all else.

So why am I writing tonight? I am writing to plead with you to continue to pray for us as we go. We do not deserve the prayers that have already been lifted to our Savior for us. We have had so many people tell us they are praying for us. That is possibly the most humbling thing for someone to say to you. We cannot tell each of you who have prayed for us how much it means to us. We pray that God will allow us to simply see fruits from our labors worthy of the prayers that have been lifted to God for our family! And we pray that God will bless each of you that do continue to pray for us. We are walking onto the battlefield and you are right with us!

I want to close with something I feel the Lord is showing me... I have seen so many examples lately of men who have gone to the mission field and dragged their families along with them. The families suffer as the man goes about HIS MINISTRY and forgets about his family. God has called OUR FAMILY to the mission field. In fact, I see it like this: Vanessa and I have been called to begin to clear a airstrip for a bunch of planes that are going to be commissioned to take His message to the world. Our job is to do the hard labor of clearing the path for the planes to leave the hanger. Those planes are our children. And as we clear the fields and ready the planes, they are going to be preparing for the work the Lord has ahead of them. The better we do at clearing the field, the better chance they have at an effective "take-off".

In Christ,


Penny said...

Yes all the busyness can sometimes be overwhelming...that is why all of us continue to pray. We can focus on your family as we go about our day, that is currently less stressful than yours. We can and will continue to pray for protection and strength in the battle. What a blessing for the children that you understand the bigger picture of training them for flight as the journey continues. It is truly a blessing to work alongside your children not just for your children. Big difference...Great reward!!! May God continue to fill you with His Holy Spirit, giving you wisdom as needed as He promises in James. You and your family are loved and the prayers will continue to pour forth.

Diane said...

Your family will be in our prayers...continually. I just finished reading the book Crazy Love by Francis Chan and the entire time I was reading the book, your family came to my mind. Greg, you are leading your family to live out your faith and love for Christ. You are showing that the best way to love Christ is to love others...especially those in great need.

I will be praying that the Lord strengthens you and your family and that you will not grow weary in doing good.

God bless you all,


Don said...

You and your family are an inspiration to me and my family. I will pray for you all daily. Thank you for showing us all what following Christ truly looks like.

I love you brother. God is with you.