What did we sign up for?? I’m starting to lose my mind!
We’ve made a decision, started down a path that doesn’t have an end in sight, and it’s not something our peers really understand. Most find it odd, or at the very least, poorly thought out. It’s not too late to turn back, but this is something we’ve wanted so bad! The risk is worth it.
Let’s go back to the beginning. Our acceptance to work with Mercy Ships was the culmination of weeks upon weeks turning into months of hoping and waiting. We’ve been arranging our life for months now around the single hope that we would be able to serve with this organization.
We’ve heard SO many positive comments and it has been unbelievably encouraging!! We are also getting a few crazy looks when we explain that we’ll be working for free. If only that was the hardest part, the only challenge.
For every awesome experience someone gets to go through, it’s hard for people to understand all the hard work, sweat and tears that led to this point. It hasn’t been easy.
So to be clear, this trip is a RISK. We will probably get sick. We will probably fight. We will wish we signed up for 3 months. We will wish we signed up for 24 months. We will probably get stressed about money. We will miss the times back home that we will never be able to make up. We will make friends that we will serve alongside and give our hearts to and then never see again. We will meet people who have exponentially more patience, goodwill, and love in their hearts for humanity than we do. We will come home with nowhere to really call home. We will come home with no jobs. We will come home with memories that no one will really understand. We will come home different than we left.
I remember the summer nights of 2013 when Ruben would dread going to work another day. I remember feeling absolutely helpless. I would be wide awake at 3am, no sleep to be seen. I would pray for him night after night (that is so not the typical me). Soon after he started reading Radical by David Platt. He only got a few pages in when he called me from his CG station and very seriously told me he thought we were supposed to do Mercy Ships.
Eventually his time with the CG ended and we started pursuing service with Mercy Ships. It started out as an exciting prospect. But the farther we got into the application process and then the waiting to hear back from them, the harder it was to feel peaceful, and the harder it was to feel “called” to this work and ministry. It seemed like it would be exponentially easier to just stay in the states, take some kind of adventure “stateside”. A regular job change felt more manageable than this uncertainty.
It felt like we were living for a fantasy. We were saying no to all these opportunities that would have benefited us personally, professionally, and spiritually all because we were hoping we would be able to serve with Mercy Ships.
Being accepted and moving forward with this dream, this prayer answered, has been surreal. So many things have worked out that we had no control over, that we know God has brought us to this point and will get us to the end.
Ben Carson says in his book Take the Risk,
“Anyone who refuses to test his limits, anyone unwilling to move out of her comfort zone, is destined to live life inside the envelope. The most important developments in science, history, technology and the arts came from taking risks.”
Anyone who refuses to test his limits, anyone unwilling to move out of her comfort zone, is destined to live life inside the envelope. -Ben Carson Click To Tweet
What was the last risk you took? Are you considering a risk currently? What kind of risks are hardest for you to make?
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