“I love doing preposterous things,” He replied. “Why I don’t know anything more exhilarating and delightful than turning weakness into strength, and fear into faith, and that which has been marred into perfection.”
-The Shepherd (Hinds Feet and High Places Novel)
As a little girl, I loved watching The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers on TV. If you don’t know who the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers are, then you probably weren’t a 90’s kid from America – and you probably didn’t wake up at 6am every Saturday to make sure that you didn’t miss an episode (like me). Call me obsessed if you must, I’m not ashamed.
I loved dreaming about what it would be like to have superhuman powers. In fact, I still love pondering the thought. I wanted to know what it would feel like to change the world, to make a difference, to be strong and brave, and to fight off evil villains (and to fly of course… but I digress). Little did I know – that being a Christian is very similar to being a Power Ranger – just take away the skintight bodysuits and the fake alien monsters, and BAM we’ve got ourselves a party!
But in all seriousness, my dream of wanting to be a superhero also had it’s downsides. Growing up, I was a sore loser, I didn’t like being told that I couldn’t do something, and I really struggled to make room in my life for failure and defeat. I was constantly trying to prove myself and my worth to others – both to kids my age and adults alike. Until Jesus got a grip on me. Then things began to change. I will still admit, however, that I don’t enjoy losing. (Just ask my teammates after a soccer game or call my parents for a play-by-play on family game night. It can get ugly if my heart isn’t lined up with God’s.) The struggle is still real, and the fall still hurts when it happens, but at least now I have Someone to catch me when I stumble and make a mess of things.
This past week in Vancouver, on my week long mission trip with Calvary Chapel and XXXchurch, I got sick. (Like “nasty cough and boogers” kind of sick.) I didn’t plan for this, I was not happy about it, and I felt like I was going to burden my entire team rather than bless them. How could I possibly please God on this mission trip if I was sick? How could He use me if my voice was gone and my throat was sore? Needless to say, I was frustrated. But once I actually took the time to listen to what God had to say about my weakness and sickness during that week, I ended up learning quite a lot.
Looking back, I was able to attend the porn expo all three days with XXXchurch where I met so many amazing individuals – some who knew Jesus and some who didn’t. (Cool story, 8 people got saved inside the porn conference at our booth which is absolutely ridiculous and absolutely amazing all at the same time. That just doesn’t happen at sex expos.) I was able to spend quality time in one-on-one conversations with my teammates, and we got to exchange stories and testimonies that spoke of how wonderful and faithful our God has been throughout our lives. I was able to share toiletry filled gift bags with some of the women who were living on the streets of Vancouver, and I was able to bond with one special girl named Laura who taught me about overcoming and keeping a positive attitude despite tough circumstances. The Lord spoiled me with adventures and blessings. So even though the trip had some added surprises and difficulties, it ended up being better than I ever could have imagined (cough, boogers, and all.)
I learned that the condition of my heart was more important to God than the condition of my work and the condition of my health. God’s priorities are usually way different than mine, and sometimes taking a step back is necessary before taking the next few steps forward. He’s such a gracious God. I love that He loves me, even when I am cranky and tired and have boogers dangling out of my nose. (Sorry, gross, I know.) So the point and summary of this post is that the Lord was very present in Vancouver. The mission trip was a huge success, and it was all because of His faithfulness, patience, grace, and love. Many lives were changed, and many people were set free… one of those people being me.
…And being a part of God’s beloved family beats being a Power Ranger any day!