The words of Proverbs 3:1–4 tumble around in my head and heart often as I go through my day with my three small children:
I never wanted to marry into the ministry.
There. I said it. Whew.
The life that corresponds to marrying a church worker—whether pastor, chaplain, missionary, or so on—is messy and difficult. There’s no way around that. It would take a very noble specimen of humanity to seek out a life that features extra helpings of flaming devil-darts and inevitable family struggle—to say nothing of the fact that it’s a life very much on display to those served by one’s spouse’s work. But that’s exactly what it is. And people do sign up for it.
“Can you please help me, Mom?”
My six-year-old son asked me this when he was working on a new LEGO building bricks set and got stuck on a step in the directions.
Why is Advent a great season to consider God’s mission for the world?
My husband, our daughter, and I serve as missionaries in the Dominican Republic. When holidays come around, naturally we compare what we do here with what we do back in the States. That comparison game can often leave me feeling angry and discouraged.
Have you ever walked through a familiar room in the dark? It is probably a room you would not think twice about walking through during the day. But suddenly, when you walk through it in the dark, it can become an ominous obstacle course with the lights off. Take your living room, for example. The reality of the room is not necessarily any different in its dark state. The furniture is still in the same place, the same basket of toys or books is still right in the middle of the room where you left it, your pair of shoes is still next to the couch, and your bag from work is still by the front door. Once the lights are off, the room doesn’t change, but your perception of it does. It makes you second-guess every step you take.
Our missionaries are incredibly important in spreading the Gospel truth to the world, especially in places where Christianity is uncommon. These called workers of Christ are diligent in sharing their personal faith and the beauty of the Gospels with those who don’t know Him. Emily Belvery, author of Together We Believe: A Study of the Apostles’ Creed, shares her experience in the mission field using the Apostles’ Creed to bring the most basic confession of faith to those who needed clear and concise answers about Christianity.
What burdens are you carrying right now?
Are you . . .
Just as being humbled in life is unavoidable, so is living with change. If my new motto is “Be prepared; humbling will happen, and there’s nothing you can do about it,” then I might as well tack on another clause: “Oh yeah, and change happens too.”
The concept of change shouldn’t be an afterthought, but how often do we clutch our perceived life stability with a white-knuckled grip when change lurks nearby—and resist change so much that it sweeps us off our feet anyway? I know I engage in such white-knuckling often, so it can be helpful to remind myself that nothing on this earth lasts for long.
As a new mother, I’ve been struggling to figure out a spiritual routine for my daughter and our family. We say prayers at bedtime and read some books that are Christ-focused, but sometimes I feel lost when I think about teaching her about Jesus as she continues to grow.