I'm sitting in the living room right now, listening to Eli cry. He woke up about 15 minutes ago and is refusing to go back to sleep. I'm guessing that I'll wait about four more minutes and then try feeding him. Hopefully that will settle him down and he'll sleep. I'm glad I decided to stay up late tonight because if I had gone to bed at the same time as Doug, then I would have been awakened after only 30 minutes of sleep. That is far more painful than not getting to go to sleep in the first place.

I'm feeling rather confused this evening over a big decision that I just had to make. I started reading a book recently called 'Just Courage' by Gary Haugen (i think that's the author's name - the book is in the room with my sleeping husband). [pause while i follow through on plans to feed baby and put him back to bed. seems to have been a success.] Anyway, this book is about following God's call to fight against injustice in the world.

I chose this book to read almost at random, but it has turned out to be quite challenging. In fact, it's the first thing I've read in a long time that challenged me to the point of making me uncomfortable. It started me really thinking about how comfortable I am in my little 'Christian cul-de-sac' and got me thinking about mission trips more seriously than I have before. Just after this seed was planted in my heart, I heard about a mission trip that my brother-in-law, Keith, is leading to Uganda in May.

Well, Eli has woken back up and started crying again, so I'll make this the short version. First I was excited about it and willing to do whatever I needed to make the trip work. I talked to Doug and he was generally on board. I got more details and it looked a little more daunting, but after some discussions it seemed like it still might be a good fit. I prayed and thought about the decision a lot and was feeling pretty confident that this was the direction God was leading.

I got Doug's input on the idea again and then suddenly (though not because of anything he said, i don't think) started getting very upset at the thought of leaving my kids - especially the baby - for so long (the trip is 2.5 weeks). I then went through a brief but intense internal battle where I felt like God was leading clearly in one direction, but my emotions were trying to take me in another. After more prayer and wrestling, and a couple of helpful conversations with other moms, I started to have some peace and excitement over the idea again.

And now it has basically fallen through due to logistical difficulties. If I had an extra month to research and plan before I made a final decision, then I might be able to do it, but there's just not enough time. So, what was that all about? Was it a test of willingness? I am happy to say that, though there was some resistance, God did find a heart that is willing to follow wherever He leads. Was this preparation for another, upcoming opportunity?

It is confusing for obvious reasons and leaves me feeling slightly insecure because I feel like I fought this major spiritual battle against my flesh and overcame it by the power of God... but for nothing. Now I know that's not true because nothing is for nothing. But I can't see clearly what it was for. Hmm... I think I'm starting to talk in circles now. And Eli is still crying, so I'd better go. Just thought I'd take the time to finally post something real. :)


Anonymous said...


My name is Elyse and I’m an intern with Gary Haugen’s organization, International Justice Mission. I’m so encouraged to read about what you are learning about God’s call to fight injustice in “Just Courage.” One way you might be interested in helping the oppressed is by becoming a prayer partner with IJM: http://www.ijm.org/getinvolved/prayerpartners. By signing up you’ll receive weekly prayer updates about IJM’s casework from the field and can help support our work through prayer. I wish you well on your journey as you seek God’s heart for justice and appreciate your support.

martha said...

Good post. Nothing is for nothing. This could just be the beginning of a very long or a very short process ... no way for us to know. But it is so good that you processed it. So often our future holds something different than what we expect, but we do know that God is good, and he will give you peace! May God continue to mold your soft heart :).