Here’s the thing, once we told Him that He could have it all, He agreed to take it.
On Monday evening I returned to the place I call home after spending 7 days in Turkey. For many reasons there was incredible excitement in my heart as our plane lifted off from Kansas City on the first leg of our journey. For many reasons there was incredible relief in my heart as we touched down on the last. In short I can say that there was much romanticism about the lifelong dreams of my future that were painfully broken off during those seven days.
The people were amazing, inspiring, encouraging. In fact those words feel empty when I think of the faces. When I consider the men & women, married, single, their teenagers and children, all that is inside of me is respect. They are men and women of renown, but this world does not know their names. They are those who have received the invitation and accepted. Laying down their lives at a high, high price, at the cost of family, friends, at the misunderstanding of those closest, at the accusation of their churches they are those that follow the Lamb wherever He goes.
Hearing their stories and getting a true picture of the lives that they live is part of what brought me to painful freedom from wrong ideas. Most of them can hardly be found. Addresses, emails, phone numbers unknown. Sacrifices the world will never know, wounds suffered that no man can heal until the Lord of Glory returns. Story after story, conversation, observing them in meetings, piecing together the picture of the cost of discipleship.
I cried for days. Then I came home, and here I am on Thursday night bawling like a baby on my couch. Their children put me to shame in hunger and devotion, and my desire when with them was to pour out every drop that was within me, all that I have I want to give.
You love suddenly. Breaking into time and space and making something new, different than it was before. Wether we asked or not, whether we were ready or not. In that moment and after there is no turning back. Walking down the street outside the hotel, absorbing the sounds and language, drawing in the pictures and the people, in my heart I heard Shelley Hundley singing “He came to me weeping again, He’s longing for friends.”
It’s the same song I hear no matter where I go. And the response of my heart is “Whatever You say, Whatever you do, Whatever face You show me all I want is You.” And here I am. Longing for You, back at the grinding wheel fighting to stay on top of the never ending list of things to do, dropping the ball, doing things wrong, repenting and asking for forgiveness, aching in my soul to be filled and crying out for you to fill. Different but in the same place. You agreed to take it all, and that looks entirely different than what I thought when I said it to You.