“Daughter, can’t you see that I’m right here?”...
One day a teacher in my Discipleship Training School (DTS) was talking about The Great Commission. You know, those verses at the end of Matthew, those words we Christians hear so often? “Go and make disciples of all nations.” Those words had always seemed so overwhelming to me.
I could never do that, God. That’s too hard, too big. What does it even look like?
Jesus is in the business of renewing our minds, and that week in DTS He was definitely wanting to renew mine. As the teacher spoke, the Lord gently whispered in my ear;
“Daughter, can’t you see that I’m right here? Can’t you see that I’ve always been right here? You don’t have to fight for me, you don’t have to go looking for me, you don’t have to work for me. I am here.”
God's focus is not on what we must do, but on Who we must do it with. God is with us: we in Him and He in us. Now that’s easy enough to say but I’ll be the first to admit I’m guilty of not living it out. I’ve been scared to step out in faith, forgetting God my Provider lives within me. I’ve faithlessly prayed for people to be healed, forgetting I have access to the One who has all authority and power. I’ve valued myself based on things of the world, forgetting I am seated in heavenly places in Christ. I’ve backed out of opportunities to talk to people, forgetting I walk with the One who holds all wisdom and knowledge.
But I now understand that The Great Commission means simply living everyday life as a son or daughter of the King. It is God's kids receiving revelation that the Kingdom truly lives within us, then desiring nothing less than to see that Kingdom lived out everywhere we go. Above all it is about children who have direct access to our Father, for Jesus did only what He saw His Father doing.
Another lesson God taught me during DTS was to trust and let go. For my outreach phase I was originally on a team going to India. I’ve always wanted to go to India, and the ministry opportunity there got me excited. Everything made sense… until God began to change my heart. Suddenly I had this overwhelming desire to go to Greece, another outreach location option. Greece, God? Really?
I had never desired to go on outreach to Europe. I had never pictured myself working with Afghan refugees or teaching kids in a gypsy community. This doesn’t make sense God. I want to go to India, I’ve always wanted to go to India. How can I give up the chance to work in India? It was an ongoing battle between my mind and my heart. India made sense, and Greece made none.
While talking this over with one of my staff members she advised, “Jenna, whatever you choose, God will be with you. He’ll go wherever you go.” Such a simple idea, but why didn’t I believe it? I somehow thought that I had to figure out what the “right” choice was, and that if I didn’t, I wouldn’t be “in God’s will.” How foolish! Sometimes God does call us to specific places to do specific things, but at other times He just wants us to go. I’ve learned that I have so much freedom in Him. God trusts me and just wants me to step out, remembering that wherever I go He goes with me.
“And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matt 28:20
You too can expereince a life changing missionionary experience just like Jenna. Learn more about the next upcoming missionary training schools offered at YWAM Tyler.