I’ve never really had a heart for missions. Being a missionary was something I never ever wanted to do. I am a high maintenance woman who appreciates the luxuries of the United States way too much to be traipsing all over the world to share God’s word. After all, there is still so much to do here in the United States.
But over the last year or so, God has been doing a work in my heart. He has been growing me in the area of missions. Now, don’t get me wrong, I don’t think I have a calling to be a full-time missionary, but maybe, just maybe, I’m raising one.
A few weeks ago, I shared that my oldest daughter, Emily, had started her senior year and will be graduating come May. Well, as of last Friday, my middle daughter, Kennedy, who just started her Junior year, will be GRADUATING too!
Yes, my daughter Kennedy will graduate a year early. Due to many issues and circumstances, we (Kennedy, my husband, me, and God) thought this was her best course of action. And while I am sad to be letting go of both my babies (thankfully I still have one left), I know this is the right decision.
I don’t think Kennedy has stopped smiling since the decision was made and it is not just because she wants to be done with high school. No, she is excited because she feels God calling her into ministry. Not as a pastor, but as a full-time missionary.
Scary, scary prospect for me I must say. While I am honored and proud that she has decided to devote her life and career to God, this is NOT something I would have picked for her. I generally like all my kids to be on the same continent. But, I would never doubt God’s call for my daughter. I would never want to get in the way for God’s plan for her life. Not to say that I don’t have any doubts or that things are worked out 100%, but I am trusting in the Lord to provide all the strength and answers.
Recently I read the book Radical by David Platt (not a coincidence). I bought it well over a year ago and to tell you the truth, I didn’t even know what it was about. (It was a $5 special and I liked the size and cover-an easy book to fit in my purse and pull out in the doctor’s office, line at grocery store, etc. ) I didn’t read it right away, obviously, and, in fact, I lost it several times. A month or so ago I heard David Platt on the radio and I knew I had to find that book. I literally jumped up and down when I found it because I knew God had something for me.
Radical is an eye opener to missions, but it is so much more. In the opening chapters it talks about those overseas who are giving their lives to be in church. Considering what is going on in the middle east right now, I thought this to be very poignant. I’ve said it before, God’s timing is perfect!
But there was another story that really got my attention.
There was a missionary couple who was determined to take God’s word to those who had yet to hear it. They were called to a tribe that was known for cannibalism, known to kill outsiders. But they went because we are called to make disciples of all nations. They had the opportunity to speak to thousands, but unfortunately it is not believed that one person gave their life to Christ. Further making matters worse, the tribe leaders ordered them to be killed and eaten.
Some would say this waste of their lives. Why would God send them there to die knowing that not one person would be saved?Couldn’t they have done much more with their lives in America?
Well, a few years later, another missionary went to this same tribe/village. He was given the opportunity to speak and the tribe leader accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior because he recognized the message as the one the prior missionaries shared. The first missionaries’ message was confirmed by the second missionary’s and because of them all, the whole village, heard the message of Jesus Christ and most of them were saved.
Great story huh. Probably similar to one you have heard many, many times. But let me ask you this: Would you have been willing to be the first missionary?
Would you have been willing to go preach the message of Jesus Christ knowing it was likely to cost you your life?
In all honestly, I didn’t know if I could do it. I mean, I knew I could do it, I just didn’t know if I could do it willingly. After some prayer and thought, I now would be willing if God called me to it. What changed? Radical by David Platt-read it!
But God was not done with me yet.
Would you want your daughter to be the first missionary?
I’m not going to lie; this one was a lot harder for me. It is easy for me to lay my life down for Christ, it is a lot harder to lay down my child’s life for Christ. But after some time with God it became clear to me that it would be a great honor to have a daughter who would be willing to give up her life so that others have a chance at eternal life.
Is my daughter something special? Well, obviously, she is special to me. But in the grand scheme of things, she is doing what we are all called to do. She is laying down her life, picking up her cross, and following Jesus. It just stinks (at least a little) that he is leading my baby out of the country.
Where is He leading you? Are you following?
My daughter has been going around singing and dancing to this song for a while now and I thought it fitting to leave you with it.
Have a blessed day!