This month we have a guest writer sharing her story. Shelly Miller tells about her biggest leap of faith and challenges us to take a good look at our lives and see if anything is keeping us from making a fresh leap of faith.
It must have been at least twenty minutes before my husband and I realized we’d been staring silently at strangers pulling carry-on luggage past us in the terminal. Seated against the wall, coats draped over our laps, we were waiting at the gate for an early morning departure from Dallas, trapped in a torrent of thoughts. While children were flitting through rows of seats to look at airplanes out a nearby wall of windows, we were making mental assessments, replaying the past 48 hours.
“What have we just done?” I said to him with a deadlock of focus on a piece of bubble gum stuck to a pillar.
He shook his head like awakening from a trance.
We were in Dallas at the invitation of my husband’s boss. He assumed we were coming to scout neighborhoods and schools for relocation, but we surprised him with some news after lunch.
We’ve sensed God is telling us this season of leadership in the church planting movement that we love is over. God is calling us to England.
Truthfully, that was the extent of our knowledge; we had no idea what that meant. For the first time in twenty-four years of marriage and ministry together, God was asking us to let go and take a leap of faith before knowing details and outcomes.
So was the burning bush for Moses and the sacrificial binding of Isaac (known as the Akedah in Hebrew) for Abraham.
Over the next few months, we met with friends, intercessors, and leaders we respect. And God began orchestrating miracles by opening doors to London, granting extravagant favor with people, confirmations that we had indeed heard Him right.
Those signs led us toward the arduous undertaking of preparation. Sorting through decades of memories and excess, we sacrificed keepsakes with plans to sell most of our furniture. Eighty percent of our history is discarded or packed in cardboard boxes labeled in bold black marker while we wait for a new address.
Like Abraham, our ears are fine-tuned for the ‘Go,’ fueled with anticipation, ‘Leave your country, your family, and your father’s home for a land that I will show you.’ Then God slapped us in the face with perspective.
When the timeline for our departure was continually pushed back with unexpected delays in the details, a lengthy waiting period threatened to incapacitate us. Our joy turned into desperate, tearful clinging to the prayers of intercessors for guidance.
Without income for more than two months, we moved our daughter into college on faith.
In the same way God tested Abraham on the climb up the mountain as he pondered the Akedah, this grievous interruption on our way to London is God asking us the same question. Are you using me for what you want or trusting me to use you to fulfill my ultimate purposes?
I’ve learned that when we say yes to God and let go of certainty, that doesn’t mean he’ll grant our every wish for security. God cares more about changing lives than he does about the destination.
His plans are good and often better than we imagine.
More than details falling into place on our projected timeline to England, God wants us to hear what he is saying and know what he is doing. Sometimes it takes letting go by choice or through circumstance for clear reception in the message of purpose.
When your only choice is to pray, trust and accept plunging the knife into dreams for the future, God will provide rescue, a glimmer of hope through a ram in the thicket. We must die to life as we know it for resurrection to take place.
As we boarded that flight in Dallas and quickly ascended, a wall of cloud cover blocked the view out my oval window to the landscape beneath. I clutched my husband’s arm, lay my head on his shoulder and prayed until I fell asleep.
Hard times are like cloud cover. We can’t often see through pain the ways in which God is working on our behalf. He will always catch you to land on your feet when you let go and take a leap of faith.
What is keeping you from taking a leap of faith in your life? How can you take a small step toward letting go today.
Visit Shelly’s Blog at:RedemptionsBeauty.com
We are returning to our field in SE Asia after a home visit of two months. There are so many needs at home. So many, as yet, unanswered prayers. I wish I could clone myself so I could help all the people I want to in the US and in Asia. Yet again, we are taking the leap of faith to get back on the airplane that will take us half a world away from friends and family to love and serve our other friends and family. It is scary, but being in God’s will really is the only safe place to be. So, ready, set, jump. . .