Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Whose mission are you subject to?

The volcano at the left is Fuego at dusk on a very active day. We drive right around it to get to Zapote.
I am in Illinois and reflecting on some things from the last few years of ministry. There is one thought that stands out and I wanted to share it with you. We are all called to a mission. The church and each person has a call from God to make Jesus known and to make disciples. Each of us has a unique role in that call and for each of us, our role falls under someone else's supervision. Our calls are layered and one person's call is built on another's. None of us has a stand alone call.

Because we are not called to an individual call but to a unique role within the corporate call, we are also called to submit our place to the larger vision and to the people that have responsibility for shepherding that larger vision. There are people that have a larger responsibility and an understanding of the bigger vision than we, as individuals have.

When I am in Guatemala, I work with a team. That team is led by Pastor Merari and more directly in the field by his brother Tono. These two men have received a clear vision from God for how they are to proceed to work and reach the people of the communities that they work in. I have been given a love foe Guatemala, the team that I work with and for the communities that we work in. I know that I have several roles and they vary based on the need of the moment. Some of the tasks that fall to me I love. Some are just work and I wish someone else would do them but they are mine. The work needs to be done for the overall goals to be achieved and I am the one that needs to do them. I remind myself to ask God to keep His plan and the bigger picture in front of me at the times that I am doing these things.

Two girls at a school assembly in Membrillal
I am not writing this so you will feel sorry for me. I am writing them because I need to confess that when I am feeling these things, it is my attitude that is wrong, not the task. I agree that God has called me to serve the people of Guatemala and that He has called me to do in under the vision of Pastor Merari and Tono. They are the ones that have been given the larger picture that my calling fits within. I cannot fulfill the role God has called me to without being submitted to the mission of another. My place falls within their                                                                                                            mission.

Fairhaven team in Membrillal
I hear many people that come on short term missions and they have a plan. They have decided  what they will do without ever having talked with the people that they are coming to serve. I see it in Churches also. People decide when they come to a Church that their role will be X without ever having talked to leaders and hearing the vision and direction of that particular congregation. They want to serve their vision and call but they never ask how that fits into the bigger picture. It is common in this time when we personalize everything to miss the bigger picture. It is easy to reduce the whole thing to the role that we feel called to fill and miss out on the bigger picture.

Girl playing at the clinic in Zapote
Today, I am asking God to expand my heart and to break it over the selfish motives that I so often feel. I am asking Him to help me go back and trust the people that He has entrusted with the bigger vision. When we build houses, paint a building, build a stove or shovel gravel, I want to see it as serving the vision God has given for discipling communities. I want to honor God by honoring those that have been put in positions of authority over me. I want to see God's visions fulfilled by doing what He has called me to do inside the mission that is bigger that He has called others to as well. I do not want to be solely subject to my own mission because I want the greater vision to be accomplished. I am ready to go back to work but not just to serve my own plans.

I am exited to see where Zapote and Membrillal will be in 5 years, 10 years and way out into the future. I am excited to know that I have a role in it but mostly I am exited to know that my role is only a small part in the grand scheme of God. I pray that you too know you are called to go and to serve. Even more, I pray that you know you are called to find where your call fits into the bigger picture and you are able to gladly subject yourself to the ones give responsibility to lead in the bigger picture.

Pharmacy at the clinic in Zapote

Boxes of medicine for the clinic.


Waiting to see the doctor

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