Clinical strength deodorant. Check. Breathable, cotton clothes. Check. Yellow fever + five other shots. Check. American junk food. Check. Bible and journal. Check. Perscription strength nausea meds. Check. Malaria meds. Check. Battery-powered everything. Check. It’s funny when you have a very limited space to pack all your earthly goods for the next year in how you really have to evaluate what matters and what doesn’t. Half my parents’ basement is filled to the brim with boxes full of my stuff, none of which is coming with me. It definitely makes me step back and reevaluate where my true treasures are. It’s also a gentle reminder from the Lord to categorize the appropriate items in the “Things that Matter” category, and put the leftovers in “Things that Don’t Matter.”
I spent last week counseling at Jr. High Camp for Camp Fircroft. It was the best of times. It was the worst of times. The Lord used different scenarios that occurred during the week to reveal to me a whole stash of selfishness I was conveniently ignoring in my life, remind me of the complex needs and issues of this age group, as well as the joys of serving them, and most importantly, to point out that the battle has only begun, and wins and losses do, in fact, have eternal implications. In short, it was a wake up call. Late nights and early mornings and missing my VIP left me drained, while unhealthy food, cold temperatures, and lack of personal space and hygiene left me irritable. All the while the Lord was showing me which of the two categories these inconveniences fell under. With all my glaringly obvious shortcomings, however, God still used me, which completely blows my mind. I had multiple opportunities to share the gospel in different girls in my cabin, including several who didn’t know anything about the Bible or Christ. I also was given in the incredible privilege of walking a young lady through questions about the gospel and seeing her make the decision to follow Him. In her words, “It’s time.” Amazing. Could anything matter more?
I think this coming year will be a lot more of that. My immediate response is the same one I heard echoing in my mind each and every day of last week: “I can’t do it.” Thankfully, I know the response:
“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.” (2 Cor. 12:9)