worship as strategy (10)

…. February 15, 2016, there is gratitude to be found in the moments when all we can do is breath deep, just breathe deep. It is hard to look back at the 14 years of full-time bloody, dirty, violent, death and miracle-filled missions I have survived. My ministry leadership is dead, my team is dead or scattered. Exhausted, I cannot relax.

My thoughts go toward the Godfamily I live with,  “Paul” & “Deborah.” Gracious and faithful, they have spent many years on the mission field. Their home is a safe place to grieve, a safe place to sleep, a safe place to be transparent. I wake up knowing nothing but healing and eventual departure is expected from me. So many prayers have been answered while dwelling in their home. The reconstruction of my soul, body, and mind is accelerating. My heart honors the spiritual maturity they walk in.

Sitting in the sanctuary, listening to songs of God’s goodness, forcing myself to breathe in praise, exhale praise, the burden of having to raise the qualifying $8,500 feels like weighted balloons dragging my thoughts down.

The communion plates in the sanctuary are full and I partake, thanking God for the servants who keep the area fresh.

Breathe in praise, exhale praise. I begin to thank God for His faithfulness.

Two hours later, His Spirit gently reminds me of things I must repent from. The music of the sanctuary pierces my heart, I breathe in praise, I exhale praise. Weeping in grief over sins born from the crisis of survival, I thank Him for the servants who supply tissues and empty trashcans.

I have a late lunch with friends at the coffe shop, conscious of the Landbank dollar home application hidden in my purse. I can only share my early intentions with those who have the faith to see me blessed with a house.

I return to the sanctuary and sing along with the worship leaders. The balloons, once heavy and thought-binding, are gone for now. I lift my hands in praise.

I have survived the mission fields, I am seeking a quiet life. Lord, unless You build a house, those who labor over it labor in vain.

Breathe in praise, exhale praise.

…. To be continued….

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