Wednesday, October 18, 2006

Heroes with feet of clay

I have a score of heroes in my life.

About 7 years ago God began surrounding me with mission-minded individuals who were actually DOING missions ... and whose prayers reflected a kingdom mindset I'd never seen.

Over time God has taken us different directions but some of these, and others I've met since, are serving the kingdom of God around the world in places I can't even write here.

And they are my heroes.

But I am fully aware that they have feet of clay. Every one of them are fallible humans. There are days they don't want to get out of bed. There are days they long for a cheeseburger and fries and some mindless entertainment. There are days they question whether it is worth it.

As I shared with my husband yesterday, missionaries are learning the same lessons we are -- they are just doing it in a different context. I've had some tell me that God sent them overseas because He knew that's what it would take for them to learn (humility, love, patience ... fill in the blank).

As my kingdom vision has grown, I have become increasingly aware that God has put these missionaries in my life for a reason. That reason is not so that I can idealize them (or idolize them!) ... but so that I can pray for them, support them, and encourage them.

That is my vision for this blog: A place where a busy missionary can land for a few minutes of encouragement from someone who sees him or her as a hero ... with feet of clay.

2 Corinthians 4 is my theme passage for this blog. More to come later ...

4:1 Therefore, having this ministry by the mercy of God, [1] we do not lose heart. 2 But we have renounced disgraceful, underhanded ways. We refuse to practice cunning or to tamper with God's word, but by the open statement of the truth we would commend ourselves to everyone's conscience in the sight of God. 3 And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled only to those who are perishing. 4 In their case the god of this world has blinded the minds of the unbelievers, to keep them from seeing the light of the gospel of the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. 5 For what we proclaim is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, with ourselves as your servants [2] for Jesus' sake. 6 For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” has shone in our hearts to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ.
Treasures in Jars of Clay
7 But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. 8 We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 10 always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. 11 For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus' sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. 12 So death is at work in us, but life in you.
13 Since we have the same spirit of faith according to what has been written, “I believed, and so I spoke,” we also believe, and so we also speak, 14 knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into his presence. 15 For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.
16 So we do not lose heart. Though our outer nature is wasting away, our inner nature is being renewed day by day. 17 For this slight momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, 18 as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Bless you and your and my "heroes"
I bet they are glad to have someone
who knows that they don't always
feel 'spiritual', 'fruitful' etc. but who still loves them, prays for
them and is in 'their corner' when
life gets hard. You encourage me
in my 'trivial issues' so can only
imagine what a cup of cold refreshing H20 you must be to them! Carry on!