from where i stand…

Around two weeks ago my plans came crashing down. That is never an enjoyable experience. It is usually a time filled with a million questions and no answers. Well, no answers that seem to explain things in full.

As I began to process my new reality, a dear friend reminded me of this: “Nothing has changed.” I had to wrestle with that statement for a bit. How could she say that? Both her world and mine were changing faster than either of us would have wanted. But she was right. Had our plans changed? Yes. Had the Lord’s plans gotten derailed in all of this? Absolutely not. Nothing had changed.

That fact didn’t make me okay with it all. I feared the future. What-ifs were crossing my mind at all times. I questioned the decision of my being appointed team leader. The enemy kept bringing up past mistakes made in times of high stress and massive change. The fear of having to do this alone overwhelmed me. I was dreading February…my first month as a one-man team.

So, my friend and I walked. And I shared my heart.

The Lord can really begin to work when we get honest with where we are. That night, as we walked circles around the cultural center, the weight I’d been carrying began to lighten. Galatians 6:2 was being lived out, as this friend listened to me talk through what was weighing on my heart.

Over the next few days the Lord used my time in the Word to remind me of who he is, what he has already brought me through and what he was promised to do. The One who calls me is faithful…(1 Thess 5:24).

As I prayed about the coming months, my heart began to change. I was still dreading February. Not looking forward to it one stinkin’ bit. It was really weighing on me. The thought of being here without the girls and my adopted family kind of scared me. February was THE UNKNOWN. But, my conversations with the Lord redirected my thoughts to what I do know. I know he is in absolute control. I know he has a purpose and plan for my time here. I know he will use my weaknesses to show his power. I know that he is able to do far more abundantly than all that I ask or think. And I know his hand is and will continue to be all over the goings and comings of folks here in Burkina.

So two weeks later, where am I at? Well, I can say that I am genuinely looking forward to the coming months. And there is even a growing excitement to see what the Lord is going to do.

Will there be moments I’ll look at the long journey ahead and freak out a little? I have no doubt. But from where I stand, all I see is a God so much bigger than my circumstances. A God who has walked me through some of my darkest times. A God who has never let me journey alone. And a God who has never given up on me.

As I look at the race he has set before me, it is easy to get caught up in the questioning of things months and years down the road. So I’m holding tightly to the things I do know and just focusing on running what’s next.

 

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6 thoughts on “from where i stand…

  1. Amanda,

     

    I wish I could be there with you to help (the amount would be questionable J).It sounds like the time with your friends (the one who walks with you and the savior who listens to you) resulted in a heavy dose of wisdom.

    It reminds me of times when one of you would be having a tough time with school or sports or someone and Connie would say this is something you work through because it is a “character building” time. I know there were times when you must have thought, “I have enough  character thank you.”

    It reminds me of the lesson about faith we taught our Sunday School class a few months ago. I took a coin from my pocket wrapped in my fist and told the class I had a quarter in my hand. They could not see it but I assured them it was there. I asked if they believed me. Most all said yes (except the trouble makers J). I asked why they believed me when they had not seen the coin. They said because I was their teacher, a good person, I was a Christian, etc. I said, “ so you believe me because of the proofs you have seen in my life even though you cannot see the coin to verify it is a quarter.” I told them that was an example of faith. They had faith I was telling the truth not because of what they could see but because of what they had seen. I then told them I would “take away their faith.” I opened my hand and allowed them to see the quarter. I said now you don’t need faith to believe what I am telling you because you can see it with you own eyes. I told them faith was believing in something you could not see.

    I would now add that faith is believing and moving forward even though you do not have all the answers to the questions.

    I have seen your faith in Jesus grow beyond measure over the past several years. It has grown from a girl who was afraid to order pizza over the phone to one who moved into the jungle to live with people she did not know, communicate in a language she had not yet learned, and survive by catching, killing and eating things she had never seen. I have seen you do  amazing things that I’m sure have become common place events for you but I see it as tremendously grown faith. You know He has you close and knows your greatest fears. He is  right there saying, “Amanda, don’t worry, I’ve got this. It will be so great! Just you wait and see!”

     

    Loving you with all I have,

    Dad

     

    P.S.: In the spirit of complete transparency I did teach the story of faith using the coin but the original story came from someone else; so don’t go thinking I’m so brilliant.

    Love you.

     

     

     

    • thanks for this, Dad. i love you (even though you just announced to the world my former irrational fear of the pizza man!).

  2. Hi Amanda, love your story and your Dad’s reply. I am so proud of you and pray you continue to walk with the Lord and He will never let you down. I don’t know why I am always amazed when He leads me through the bad times because He always does. Love you the moistest, Madee

  3. Your dad kinda made me tear up a little. 😉 And… I met a lady from BF today! She’s a French nun that helps run a French restaurant here in Lima! How cool is that?! I got so excited when she said she was from BF ~ I said, “oh, I have a good friend there!”

    Love you so much!!
    Leah

    1 Cor. 1:26-31 have been my go-to verses for a while now ~ mostly b/c of the same type of feelings you express here. I know our situations are different but I praise God that He’s the same yesterday, today, and forever.

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