I ache knowing that, aside from making cards, I haven’t freely created in quite some time. Even more so, it’s been longer since I have taken the time to sit down, kiss pen to paper, and write. But as my spirit sighs for my thoughts to freely dance on paper, I am thankful to know that truly, writing & creating make me come alive. I’m starting to feel the little tickle in my nose that comes before crying simply just thinking about what a good gift I’ve been given by a good Father- and I claim it as a gift. Redemption sings in that sentence because I wouldn’t have claimed it a year ago.
Another thing that I would never have guessed I would be doing a year ago? Living in a dorm room, on a hall with more than twenty girls, loving them so much it hurts. In my mind, I was not a person cut out for girl’s ministry. I honestly resented the thought of being stuck down to a group of girls. Faithfully, the Lord cleaned (and continues to clean) my heart of its selfishness and pride. There are a small handful of lovely ladies, who live on the hall and off the hall, that I have had the opportunity to lead, counsel, and love furiously by the side of my wonderful roommate, who serves as the Resident’s Assistant on our hall. Clichés are clichés because they’re true: my life wouldn’t be the same without them. As much as I believe that followers of Jesus are to become all things for all people (1 Corinthians 9:22), I believe that I was created with a tenderness and gentleness designed to minister especially to women. Another good gift I’ve been given by a good Father.
Recently I have taken the two gifts, laid them back at my Father’s feet, and told Him, He can do whatever He wants to with them. They’re His & I’m only along for the ride.
So He has.
Through TEAM Missions, I have applied for the position of the Creative Arts Facilitator at a vulnerable women’s ministry in Chad, Africa. I would be using creative arts such as drama, art, writing, and music to minister and serve women who are vulnerable in their surrounding environments, such as the war in Syria or at the hands of traffickers. My time spent serving there could range from 3-9 months, depending on the amount of funds raised, after I graduate in August. Majority of the population in Chad practice Islam, which presents a magnificent opportunity to have beautiful conversations about Allah and His Son, Jesus. (Fun fact: I signed up last minute for a course on ‘Understanding Islam’ at the beginning of the semester because one of my psych classes didn’t make. I applied for the position a week later, ignorant in knowing that I would predominately be working with Muslim women!).
The stunned, awe-filled, glory laughing, wonder story has already been filled with God working in ways immeasurably more than I could have ever asked for. It’s like whenever you finally confess that you have a crush on someone- you instantly see or hear about them everywhere you go. The same has happened with Chad, a country that I probably haven’t thought about since my 9th grade world geography class. I have fallen in love with the country of Chad and Muslims. There isn’t a day when I don’t holy laugh or weep at the excitement I feel in seeing my dreams coming true. With so many uncertainties about my future, I know deep in my spirit, that I was created to serve in this role, if only for a season.
I hope that this story inspires you to believe in the gifts God has given you. I hope you start dreaming of immeasurably more (Ephesians 3:20). I pray that He will grow you in the knowledge of Himself, so you may know the hope to which He has called you, how rich He feels when He looks at you, and better understand the astronomic power that dwells within you (Ephesians 1:17-19).
Please pray for the people in Chad, that they would come to know Jesus personally through the missionaries working there and through the power of His Spirit.
Ma salaamah (Arabic for ‘in peace’),