I just wanted to take this opportunity to be real about an aspect of what it's like to live as a missionary in a foreign country for those that haven't yet or may someday. If you know me very well, then this post probably doesn't apply to you, but given that I use this blog to communicate to a diverse audience, specifically through writing, I will take the time to speak this. I also want to speak especially to every young person that believes God has called them to do great and wondrous things with Him on the earth. If you know Jesus, then that's true for you, whether you realize it yet or not.
Maybe you don't think at all like me, but if you do, you may have once or twice, pined after the glorious dream of life on the mission field. No longer working the nine-to-five grind, sustained by the giving of others, leaving the troubles of every-day life, and wholly devoting yourself to the glorious work of the ministry. Praying without ceasing, ministering the word of truth to the hurting and broken, and receiving the tender affections of Jesus as He pats you on the head after a full day of feeding orphans and healing the sick, you curl up in bed to dream sweet revelations delivered by the ministry of His angels.
Now, I'm not saying that I don't or haven't experienced those things, and if my life is off course for not experiencing that 24/7, then I receive the prayers you are about to pray. Also do not be afraid that I have slipped into deep gloom and depression. On the contrary, the Lord is meeting me in powerful ways and He is doing incredible works my midst.
However, I do happen to be aware that, especially young people, who desire to follow the Lord in a genuine way can become disillusioned by reading the accounts of people in ministry if they are written or communicated in a particular light. I don't want to paint a rose-colored picture of what's happening here or what it's like to be in missions, especially for those the Lord may call or be calling, to missions or any other new sphere of ministry.
Things can get really tough sometimes and I think it's important for young people to know that a) so that they don't disqualify themselves from responding to the call of God due to their own perceived weakness, and b) so that they don't condemn themselves or give up in ministry due to a false perception or standard. Weakness doesn't make you any less called or any less adequate to fulfill the call of God. It makes you a prime candidate for the power of God.
But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, so that the surpassing greatness of the power will be of God and not from ourselves... For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison - 2 Cor. 4:7-17