Tropical paradise. This was the recent venue for my husband and I to disconnect alone in the sands of serenity for the first time since our honeymoon. I didn’t realize how much we needed the rest until we began our journey home and the weight of the world began to creep back onto our shoulders.
A struggle of the flesh arose, if you will, as I instantly missed my shaded palm and salty breeze. Desires to live in the lap of luxury toyed with my mind and fanned a dissatisfaction with in me. Thoughts of aborting mission, taking an easier career path, and aligning my professional credentials in exchange for extra zeros at the end of a paycheck poked at me like a sharp stick. After all, I really wanted to see that palm tree again….sooner than later.
Then came the reality check. My tropical fantasies actually only lasted about 0.2 seconds, because deeply rooted within who I am is this higher calling…an irrevocable mission…an invitation to join Jesus in His works and an appeal to be at peace with a lifestyle that doesn’t always fit the mold of our modern culture. It grounds me, and I know the mission He’s set before me is exactly where His power, presence, and grace will most manifest.
On our way home from the tropical paradise, I flipped through my passport. I sat in wonder thinking how blessed I’ve been to encourage others simply by being on mission with Him. Six different countries from the Amazonian jungles of Colombia to the former Soviet soils of Kyrgyzstan. These nations have been impacted, in some way, through missions He’s sent me on…ones you have supported.
I am now going on another mission trip, except this one will look different from the rest. I won’t get another stamp in my passport. Instead, I’ll be staying put. On this mission, I stand at the foot of a mountain, one primarily assigned to me. A mountain intended to prove to the world that it is, in fact, movable through the most unlikely vessel, me, because it’s in my weakness that He works His wonders. This mountain is called The Power Plant.
“Why is The Power Plant a mountain and why are you an unlikely vessel?” you might ask. Let me be completely honest and vulnerable with you for a second. To your question I would quickly respond that I often feel inadequate. Unqualified. Intimidated. It’s at this point in time that the guest house nears completion and I stare at the mountain. More boots-on-the-ground ministry will be taking place. More support and assistance will be offered to those in need. Yes, that’s the positive, warm, fuzzy-feeling side to this equation, but the other piece is life itself. It gets messy. People have traumas, addictions, and challenges that seem incomprehensible. Who am I to roll up my sleeves and attempt to climb this mountain? Just a simple believer who said yes. That’s all.
A week on the beach affirmed to me firsthand how significant my mission of encouragement, hospitality, and respite care is to the weary….to His beloved children. I hold to the fact that as Christians we are to be a living sacrifice (Romans 12:1) and are to surrender our very best. For me, The Power Plant guest house has been a sacrifice. It has been a labor of love and one with much attention to detail. Could I have finished it sooner and have done less work? Probably. But, the guest house in itself is a gift to those desperately needing an escape. If God gave His very best, Jesus, as a sacrifice on the cross then shouldn’t we give our very best as well? Shouldn’t we serve, give, and love with excellence?
I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again. I’m a terrible fundraiser. I hate closing the deal and making the awkward direct ask, “Will you support me?” In it, I am vulnerable and keenly aware that my strengths lie in other areas besides fundraising. I’m a worker bee. That’s who I am. However, fundraising is a necessary part of being a 100% support-based missionary.
So, with full disclosure of my weakness, I have to shout from the rooftops and brag for a second, y’all. God did this! The beauty in me being a terrible fundraiser is that God provided. I can’t take credit for any of it!
· The house was purchased when there was no way on paper that the loan should have been approved.
· Rezoning requirements on the loan were ignored that could have prevented the purchase
· The 20% down-payment was available when I had no idea where it would come from
· Multiple times donors sent unsolicited gifts in weird amounts almost to the dollar of a major purchase I had made in faith during the renovation
· New volunteers have sacrificed time and caught the vision
· The total renovation has completely been paid for in cash
· Plus…I haven’t missed any meals
Bottom line…God provides. Praise Him for that…that’s what The Power Plant is all about…resting in His strength.
Our mission at The Power Plant has only begun, and as the guest house is close to being opened, I stand at the foot of the mountain, and I’m asking you to grab your walking sticks and partner with me on this mission. Let’s serve with excellence and watch Him work the next miracle! It will be a story to tell.
Grace and peace,