Hello, Friends! I’m so happy to be here today to share with you a tip God gave me recently: “Follow Me,” He said.
And I said, “Ha, okay, well I’ve heard that before, God — have any NEW pointers?”
“Okay… I am. I do. What else?”
“FOLLOW ME. Follow my example of whom to love [He means everyone], and how to love them. Hold onto Me. Really cling to Me. You’re never walking alone, then.”
And then I understood.
This conversation happened while I was reading through the “Make It Count Devotional”, specifically after I read Deuteronomy 13:4. I really love how The Message puts it:
You are to follow only God, your God, hold him in deep reverence, keep his commandments, listen obediently to what he says, serve him—hold on to him for dear life!
This of course is something I already knew somewhere in my heart. You know that precious thing you hold onto, that thing you put away for safe-keeping because you might want to admire it later, but then you can’t seem to find it when you need it? That’s where this information has been for me for awhile. Hidden away. And God’s Word was my map. God’s Word is like the voice that comes out of your GPS, leading you to the general area of where you need to be, but occasionally taking you around and around in circles until something eventually clicks in your mind, and you realize you needed to turn left onto that side-street to get to your final destination. In other words, He’ll hold your hand and walk (or carry) you there, but He wants you to experience the epiphany. Because epiphanies are fun, and God wants you to have fun.
I’ve been so intent on following God to WHERE He wants my husband and I. We followed Him when He led us overseas, followed Him when He brought us to our new church, He led us to the apartment we’re in, He directed us to our sons’ schools, etc. All of these PLACES — there’s been so much relying on Him to lead us PHYSICALLY to where we need to go. Of course that’s okay, and we absolutely should rely on Him to lead us where He wants us, but I had kind of pushed the rest of the following aside. The following that happens in my heart and mind.
We’ve been overseas for almost four years, and we absolutely love the city we’re in; we love the culture, and we love the work we’re doing here. But I have to say, sometimes I feel very, very alone. I don’t exactly know how to describe the feeling because it’s not loneliness or homesickness, it’s just a sense of… emptiness, maybe. We’re surrounded by a great team of staff at our school and church, and we’ve made some wonderful friends who pray with us and for us. We’ve got support here. We’re not alone. But sometimes, to me, it does feel like there’s something missing.
And now I know what it is! I followed God here. I followed Him to all of the places He led me to. But still at times I’ve been frightened, angry, bitter, exhausted, anxious; I’ve felt unworthy, alone, unequipped, and off-track. But how does someone feel like that when they’re walking with God? How could a missionary feel these things? Well… I’ve been walking with God, yeah, but I’ve had my earbuds in and my iPod on while we’ve been walking around together; I’m following Him to each new destination, but am not really HEARING Him when He speaks on the journey. With the exception of when I’m having quiet, one-on-one time with Him in His Word, I have been tuning God out in the day-to-day moments, for whatever reason. Maybe because I think I know better. Maybe because I’m afraid of what He’ll ask of me next. Maybe because I’m too content, or proud.
What I DO know is this: my earbuds of distraction are coming out, and I’m tuning my ears to hear God’s voice at all times — not just when my nose is buried in my Bible. Not only will I continue to follow Him to all of the PLACES He leads me to, but I will get my heart and mind back on track too, and will I follow His ways — His examples, His commandments, His everything. Because He’s really incredible, and I don’t want to miss a word.
Illustrated Faith Make It Count Devotional | Illustrated Faith Homespun Numbers clear stamps | Illustrated Faith by Bella Blvd Treasures & Texts – Whatever Is Lovely | Bella Blvd Tiny Text – Bold & Beautiful and Wild Berries | MamaDori journaling notebook | Faber Castell Gelatos – Lavender, Red Cherry, and Guava | Faber Castell Pitt Brush Pen – Pink Madder Lake | Micron Precision Pen 01 – red | Simple Stories washi tape – Carpe Diem collection | Simple Stories cardstock stickers – I Am collection | Pelikan Ink Pad – black | Crossway ESV single-column journaling Bible