Tuesday, September 1, 2015
I moved over to New Zealand 8 years ago. I moved to a first world country and for some that doesn't seem to be such a sacrifice. When people think of being called to the mission field they think of China or Africa. We still have a TV and running water from the tap and other luxuries "real" missionaries don't always have. We even have a flushing toilet (for which I am most thankful).
Does this make me any less called though?
I do not know why God didn't just leave us where we were in South Africa and use us there. I do not know why He didn't send us to Africa and China (although we may still end up there in the future). What I do know is that He sent us here to New Zealand. We heard the call and we said yes.
We never thought we would ever leave South Africa. Why would we need to leave, we had family and friends there? We had just bought a house and were about to welcome our first child into the world. We were settled and serving in a church. A small part of us decided to leave because of the crime but a large part was that we heard the call from God to leave and go to the land which He was showing us.
Stepping out was difficult but at the same time it was an adventure. God had called us and I was eager to see what He was going to do in our lives. But it came with sacrifice. I had to leave my side of the family behind and my husband left his parents behind. Not being able to be there for your sister when she was expecting her little baby boy. Not being able to comfort your brother or sister when they are having a hard time and not being able to be physically there for them is a sacrifice. It is a price I had to pay. I live in a beautiful country with wonderful people who have been there for me through the hardest times of my life and have celebrated with me through every victory and milestone. I sacrificed the familiar for the unfamiliar. I need to make things work here whereas where you have grown up you know the history and you know those you have grown up with. But hey wherever I go I will always be a stranger in a foreign land. No matter how well I learn the language and try and blend in with accents and the way I dress I am still a foreigner because my real home is with the Father. This home is only temporary.
In New Zealand we have made many many friends. Served in a few churches and supported leaders and pastors and we are still doing that today. We lead our own homegroup and we are seeing God move in the lives of those around us. We are stepping out in new areas and overcoming challenges and giants.
There was a cost. There was sacrifice. There was heartache and even today as I sit here my heart aches for my family still in South Africa who have to go through things alone. But I hand it to God. He has the best plan for all our lives and right now I am where I am meant to be. Not in China or Africa... yet but here in New Zealand with a TV and running water from a tap and a flushing toilet.
Have you weighed the cost? Do you know that there will be some form of sacrifice that you will need to offer up? Are you willing to leave family, work, friends, whatever it may be to follow where He leads you?
Listen carefully to His call. When you hear His voice calling your name, take that step and in obedience no matter the cost. There will be people who will tell you you can't do it. They will think you are crazy but do it anyway.
There is sacrifice for now but God rewards those who diligently serve Him. He rewards those who have sacrificed and paid the price.
Nothing is impossible for our God. So follow Him with your whole heart, forsaking all others.