Two Months To Change [week 8]

6/24/16

Can you relate to this? You see your parent’s old friend, really you have no idea who they are because they met you when you were a young child. They say, “My goodness have you grown! You look so different.”

You don’t think you look that different, because you see yourself everyday, so you do that awkward laugh and carry on a conversation. You still don’t the person’s name- you feel too uncomfortable asking because they know you and you don’t want to offend them.

Been there before?

13731436_10209969037612660_8749196707950424762_n

 

As I go into my last week of mission I kind of feel like this. Two months have flown by, and since you know… I’m me everyday, it’s easy to think that I’m the same girl now as the one who arrived in Milwaukee on May 31.

I haven’t reminisced and reflected terribly in depth yet, but I have been noticing things about my thoughts and actions that make me stop and say, “What!? When did this happen??”

Take today, for instance. We were sitting in church listening to a sermon on Jonah 3:4-10. More specifically, about loving rebuke and repentance. It was well given and a great reminder, but I was left feeling slightly dissatisfied. Throughout this message, and the last couple weeks, I’ve been longing for a sermon or discussion with greater depth and complexity. I want to be challenged to look beyond the surface, to get to the meaty details, to learn about weightier topics.

This desire is a testament to the spiritual maturity I’ve been growing in this summer. Two months ago I would’ve totally been okay with convicting, but not so challenging sermons or discussions. It’s so cool to see how God has been working in my heart!! Romans 12:2 says,

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is- his good, pleasing, and perfect will.”

13393953_10209658500129417_7088905793768089942_n

This theme of wanting to dig deeper continued into my date night with Jesus. I’ve been working through the book of Lamentations, writing down questions and observations. This week I did some research in order to answer some of these and gain a greater understanding of why Jeremiah, the author, wrote this book and what it meant.

I felt like a scientist almost. I’d discover one thing, which would lead to discovering another detail, and it didn’t take long for me to fall down a rabbit hole. This rabbit hole was much more productive than getting sucked into watching YouTube video after YouTube video, though.

In addition to learning about the actual book of Lamentations and Jeremiah, I also learned that I love looking into the history and context of the books of the Bible. Often I read the Bible as if the truths written on the pages are just stories. But I believe in my heart that what is written is true recording of an actual event in history. It was cool to see what I had been reading come to life.

13432296_10209658499569403_8289527680103640572_n

Another thing the Lord has been really revealing to me is my pride. I honestly came to Milwaukee thinking that I didn’t struggle with pride at all, and felt relieved by this. Haha…. I was prideful in thinking that I didn’t have an issue with that.

This Sunday was especially eye opening to my pride. But then I looked back at my prayer journal for this last week and discovered that every single day this last week I’ve been made more aware of just how much glory I seek for myself instead of Christ. James 4:6,

“But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: ‘God opposes the proud but shows favor to the humble.'”

I’m currently still seeking the Lord in this sin struggle, but these questions have been puzzling me:

  • How do you feel proud without going overboard and getting too prideful?
  • How the heck to do you stay humble?
  • How do you do something well and give God the glory, instead of taking it for yourself?

If you’re still reading, and can offer some biblical insight I would love that! Any verses or books of the Bible or books in general that have helped you… Feel free to drop something in the comments. 🙂

13412093_10209701464643503_5466572624137718069_o

Prayer requests for this week:

  • For the gun violence in this city to cease, that instead there would be peace among citizens and police in Milwaukee
  • That I would finish this last week strong, continuing to seek the Lord in everything
  • That our coworkers were able to get a glimpse of Christ’s love through us working with them, an experience that would stick with them and spur them on in their own faith journey

Thanks for reading one of the last updates on summer mission!

God bless. 🙂