Thursday, September 29, 2011
"If God puts something on your heart, do it."
Those are the words of a man that I met in Bolivia this past summer and they continue to speak to my heart just as they did when I heard him say them. This was a man who grew up as a "shoeshine boy" in the streets of La Paz, Bolivia. He shined the shoes of whoever would ask for his services so that he would have money to live. These shoeshine boys have a bad reputation and are constantly being looked down upon because of their status in society. Many of the boys are orphans or are left with only one parent. This man, however, found the Lord and began working with a church. Today, he has a ministry to the shoeshine boys in the city and is living his life in full-time ministy for his King and the Kingdom. When being asked what could be done to help his ministry, he simply said, "Your prayers. We need more workers." And then he said those words that captured my heart in such a way that tears sprang to my eyes, "If God puts something on your heart, do it."
I sing the popular Christian worship song by Chris Tomlin, "Follow": "Where You go, I'll go. Where You stay, I'll stay. When You move, I'll move. I will follow You." Do I really mean that? Or am I just singing the lyrics as empty words, offering an empty heart of worship up to my King? It is foolishness to make a promise to the Lord and then to not follow through with it. It is foolishness to sing worship to the Lord as words without meaning, from a heart that is not in communion with the One it is worshipping.
I look back on just six weeks ago, when I sat and told my dad that I did not want to go to Moody Bible Institute. I just did not think that I could do it because everything in me wanted to turn back. My dad looked me in the eyes and said, "Molly, you know you don't have to stay." I appreciate him telling me that because he wanted me to know that no one was pressuring me to go. And a small part of me thought, "That's right, I can still turn back." And yet, a bigger part of me knew that I had to go. I had to. To turn back would be to go against everything that the Lord had shown me, all of the things that He had provided for me, and on the Call to ministry that I knew He had placed on my life. I knew that this was where the rubber meets the road; this is where I had to make the defining decision. I remember visiting back in February, knowing with everything in me that God wanted me here. As we drove out of the city, Chris Tomlin's popular song "Follow" came on the radio. My heart echoed the words; I knew that I had to follow the Lord to where He was leading. It was so evident to me that He was leading me in a particular direction. There was a peace that literally passed my understanding because this was unlike any decision I had ever made before. This was a decision that I would have never made on my own will or choice.
And so here I am, sitting in a dorm room at Moody Bible Institute. How the Lord led me from signing the line on the acceptance letter saying that I would NOT be going to Moody Bible Institute, to erasing it and instead sending in my deposit, to sitting here at Moody is so surreal to me. I do not quite understand how this is a reality because this is unlike anything I would have ever chosen for myself. And that is why I point it all back to the Lord. He is leading. He has set the path before me and I must simply follow. And yet it is not simple. It is hard. It is so terribly hard and my heart within me sometimes pushes against it with everything. His Grace is the only reason that I am sitting here today. I am so encouraged, so amazed, so overwhelmed by the Grace of God in my life; by His provision; by His guidance; by His patience with me and His love towards me. He does not show me a step ahead of the next one; He is always showing me just one step at a time. And so it makes sense that I must take one step at a time. There is no need for me to worry about the future. There is no need for me to stress out about trying to figure out the Plans that He has for me... because He holds my future.
"If God puts something on your heart, do it." Just do it.
I don't have plans. I have already found out the hard way that I cannot make any plans apart from the Will of God. His plans are so much higher than my own. I do have dreams. I do have desires. And these I want to place at the foot of His Cross, where in surrender I hand them over... because I desire for HIM to reign in my life. I desire for HIM to lead me... to lead me to His heart, to His Plans, to His life. There is no other reason to live. I desire for Him to be my single focus, for my heart to be an undivided heart, to glorify Him and to live for Him only. Yes, it is hard. There are so many challenges along the way. And yet this life is meant to glorify the King. There is great joy in living for the One who created us for His Glory.
And so I say with Paul, "Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus" (Philippians 3:13-14).