Sunday, August 11, 2013

Living By Faith

"Living by faith, in Jesus above.
Trusting confiding in His great love.
From all harm safe, in His sheltering arms.
I'm living by faith and feel no alarm."

This song rattles in my head tonight after a message I heard from Jim Cymbala.

I'm developing something right now...a ministry. This ministry is my baby. Let me explain.

When you conceive, a new life begins inside of you. As you carry that baby in your womb, you develop a relationship with him before you even know who that baby will be. You love that baby and care for him by caring for yourself. You eat right, stop eating chocolate bad habits, you know the routine. And, if you are a follower of Christ, you pray that Jesus will protect your baby and keep him healthy and strong. You trust that He will make and form that baby. On the day you get to have a sonogram (2D--no fancy stuff) you see the small image of your child. You see the heart beat, and if you're lucky, you might find out if baby is boy or girl. If you are pregnant today...you can have a 3D sono and get some really great images of your child. You can see exactly what they look like.
I remember when I had my 2D sono, I could see the little noses of my boys and knew they had their dad's nose. It was just a glimpse of what they would look like. 9 months of living by faith...

When we chose to adopt, we prayed for the little girl we were to be matched to. We had no pictures, no information, nothing. Just the trust in God that he had the perfect little girl planned for our family. We prayed over every aspect of her. The day we got her picture, we knew she was ours. We had loved her from afar and lived by faith for 2 1/2 years.

About 11 years ago, God planted a seed in the womb of my heart. I had no idea what that "baby" would look like. I prayed that God would show me ... oh, how I prayed He would show me. Even just a glimpse. I could not for the life of me figure out what this was going to be.

In 2011, I went back to school. At 37 years old... what was I thinking!?

Friends and family asked what I planned to do after school. My honest answer, "I have no idea!" I only knew school was what I was supposed to do.

I thought the ministry would involve ministry to women. That's all I had ever wanted to do. I enjoyed ministering to women. So, I kept trying to make "my ministry" fit into God's plan for my life. All the while, I loved this "baby." But, I hadn't had a sono so I just tried to guess. I tried to conjure up an image of what this would look like. And since ministry to women was what I enjoyed, that was only natural, right!? I mean, what else could it possibly be?

In October of 2011...after 9 years of wondering...I got a 2D glimpse into what God had planted deep within me. WAIT! God, this isn't what I had planned!  How could I work ministry to women into this "other thing" that's growing within me? For a year, I prayed over a 3X4 index card on which I had written what I felt God had birthed within me. When I wrote it, I distinctly remember forcing myself to write in ministry to women ... because again ... that surely had to be in there. somewhere. even though God was clearly moving me in another direction.

In September of 2012, while attending a conference, God spoke so strongly to me. (Nearly a 3D sono experience.) After 10 years ... I finally knew. I had trusted God patiently for so long.

The questions began to roll through my mind. How? How do I do this? How do I fund this? How do I..."

In the four years since our adoption, I have encouraged families with this statement, "It's not about you! When you follow God's call on your life to adopt, it has everything to do with that child! It's not about you!"

So, back to the song lyrics. Living by faith...

Right now, that is me. I have more questions than answers. But, God used Jim Cymbala to remind me of my own sermon. "It's not about me!"

This is when I have to trust. To walk by faith and not by sight. To know that if God planted this seed and watered it and caused it to grow... He alone will bring it to completion. God, use me! Use ME! I have no idea how to start this...but He does! I have no idea how to fund this ... but HE does! I am just little ol' me. But HE is GREAT BIG HIM! And so, I'm living by faith.

I don't need all the answers. I just need an unwavering faith.

What do you need faith for? What has He planted within you?

11 years is a.long.time.to.wait. Don't give up! Live by faith. In His time, He will show you.