This time three years ago...we were in a state of sleep deprivation. We had left our home, our family, and everything that was familiar to us. We found ourselves half a world away alone with a 6 month old and no grandparents to come over to help.
The night before we left, we heard "Never Once" for the first time. The first section seemed to fit our moment so well.
"Standing on this mountaintop, looking just how far we've come, knowing that for every step, You were with us"
Although we loved our family dearly, there was more happiness and adrenaline than any type of sadness. We were excited and in a state of shock that it was actually happening. We were finally headed to Africa. It was surreal to say the least.
I knew that there would be days ahead that I would miss my momma & daddy, my family, & the familiar...but at the moment, all I could think about was the wonder of the unfamiliar. The fulfillment of a dream that the Lord had placed in my heart so long ago.
Over the next three years, we learned the importance of another section of the song.
"Scars and struggles on the way, but with joy our hearts can say, never once did we ever walk alone, never once did You leave us on our own. You are faithful, God, You are faithful."
Language was fun and interesting...until we weren't fluent within the first month.
We laughed with the people who laughed when we spoke...until it wasn't funny anymore.
Being away from family was an adventure...until the first holiday away from home.
It was endearing when the nationals assumed we spoke French...until it became frustrating.
There were hardships, but there were also incredible opportunities - once in a lifetime types. The Lord taught us huge things through sometimes quite ordinary happenings. He showed us how to exhibit His joy and to be content in plenty & little. I had always thought about that meaning in riches or in poverty - and it does...but He also showed us how to apply it to all areas of our life. Plenty of conviences or little conviences - plenty of family or little family - plenty of educational choices or little educational choices - and the list could go on.
He proved Himself faithful time after time after time. I would say that we had a solid foundation of faith when we left the States due to His grace and provision through our families & churches. However, over the past three years His word became real in ways we never imagined. We have searched the depths of His love, mercy, forgiveness, and grace - and are now even more aware of how much more there is yet to explore.
So, as we find ourselves finishing up our first "term" and headed stateside soon I find myself resonating more with...
"Kneeling on this battleground, seeing just how much You've done. Knowing every victory, was Your power in us."
We find ourselves kneeling in awe of Him more often than ever before. Realizing that even battles that look like they are a long way from "victory" can be claimed through Christ's power. He is faithful.
He faithfully used everything up until July 2011 to prepare us for this journey.
He faithfully allowed His strength to be perfect in all of our weakness during this 1st term.
He faithfully was faithful.
Praising Him that He will continue to be.
Grateful that His word is Truth eternal.
Looking forward to what He has in store while we are stateside and into our 2nd term.
Thank you for being on this journey with us. Your prayers, support, & encouragment have meant more than you could possibly know.