Obedient Heart

I’ve done things in my life that I knew were wrong. I’ve done things that seemed like they could be right, then turned out to be very wrong. I’ve disappointed myself and those around me. I’ve hurt others. I’ve messed up and done my best to grow after the pain subsides. But now I’m doing what I know is right; I’m being obedient. Let me tell you something, it is so hard to do what you know is right when you’re being told you’re wrong…

So, I’m going to Uganda. I’m going for three months and I’m going to love children and other people that need love. I have dreamed of doing something like this my whole life. I see it as the perfect time, right after my college graduation. I’ve got some space, I want to it use to give myself. I’m beyond excited to go but there are many people that are less than thrilled. When I told my family, I received a response worse than one I could have anticipated. There was hurt on both sides. I was left feeling lost, alone, and confused. So let me ask you: What do you do when you are doing what you think is right but others don’t agree? What do you do when your biggest supporters are against you?

Romans 8:31 says “What, then, shall we say in response to these things? If God is for us, who can be against us?”

No part of me wishes to upset my family or hurt them or disappoint them. But, I cannot let their fears hold me back from this journey that is so extremely important. No human was put on this earth to bring honor and power to themselves but instead to bring glory to God. 1 Corinthians 10:31 says, “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.” I wish my family could see that I am not content staying in one place, worrying about nothing more than my future career and finances. I worry about those who go days without food, those who are taken from their homes around the world to be slaves for others, children who do not attend school because their job is to walk miles each day to retrieve water dirtier than the water in our toilets. I want to serve those who have nothing. I do not believe I am putting myself in great danger for this cause by going to Uganda, however, if I was, I wish they could all see my heart. I wish they could hear Jesus whispering into my heart how right this is. I wish they could feel how strongly I know this is what I am supposed to be doing.

“Loving your obedient heart” – a short message I received recently from a dear friend. It made me stop and think, and clearly, write my first blog post.

Since I announced I was leaving for this trip I’ve had people tell me how “brave” I am. But it’s not that at all, I am being obedient. I have obedience that comes from a lifelong love for and trust in the maker of heaven and earth. In the book of Matthew, Jesus charges his disciples with what we call today The Great Commission:

Then Jesus came to them and said, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.” Matthew 28: 18-20

Jesus tells us to go. Go into all nations. He does not say go to just the countries you think are safest, or the ones with electricity, good health care, or Starbucks. He does not say go where the people are just like you. He does not tell us to stay where we feel comfortable, but to go. Go into all the nations. And He assures us, where we go, He goes. I’d like to think I’m being obedient rather than stubborn, defiant, naive or disrespectful and I pray that one day my family will understand why working for God’s kingdom is the most worthy thing a Christian can do, whether it’s in America, Afghanistan or Uganda.

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