“And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing”. James 1:4
Six months in Montana. It feels as though I have been here forever. I attribute that feeling to the inordinate amount of growth, change, transition, and general life that happens while working in full-time ministry. It is crazy, but there is not ever a dull moment. I wouldn’t trade it for anything! God is certainly outside of time!
I barely recall arriving here a day later than planned (due to unforeseen weather issues my plane was unable to land in Montana. I had to fly back to and spend the night at the airport in Seattle). I was nervous to come up here. I had no idea what God wanted to do with me: in Montana, in Potter’s Field Ministries, in Mudman, and in my heart. I asked the Lord for a ‘word’ when I flew out from Seattle. That ‘word’ was that God desired to work into me the full effect of steadfastness.
Through all the (seeming) chaos, through all the great joy and great sorrow, through the mundane and the truly inspirational, through all the time that passed as I was living life, I had mostly forgotten that the Lord told me what He was going to do in me. Forgive me for so easily losing sight, Heavenly Father.
I have learned that walking through the Refiner’s fire does include being burned. And that hurts. It is a reality. Yet, I have come to the place where I never want to stop feeling the heat and un-comfortability of the flames. Whatever it is that brings me to my knees before God is something I’ve learned to be thankful for. I’d rather be pressed and pushed to run into His arms than to be complacent, self-deceived, and in the place where I think I can handle everything on my own. I cannot. I just cannot do it myself. I am weak. I am sinful. I am in desperate need of my Savior every moment of every day.
But I am guilty of forgetting. Guilty of losing vision. Guilty of doubting and believing the lies in my head. I am guilty of not giving all of me to Jesus who died for me.
I am guilty.
But He washes me clean- free of all guilt and shame. I am free to live fully for Him. How does this freedom manifest itself? By pouring my life out as a drink offering. Giving ‘it’ (whatever ‘it’ may be in that day) my everything. Recklessly abandoning myself to and for the Lord. Living, whole-heartedly for Him at absolutely any cost.
Simply put, it more often than not looks like Mudman: a gourmet burger joint that is being blessed by God to abundance. We serve an amazing burger that serves an even more amazing purpose. All profits go back to feeding kids around the world. It is a beautiful opportunity to share with the customers about the Lord. That might look like talking about Potter’s Field Kid’s Clubs and the time spent in our field locations (my six months in Kenya, for example), or that could be through genuine care and concern for each person that walks into our two restaurants, up to the food truck, or drives up to the hut.
Even when it is hard- even when it hurts- I live a life with the Lord I could never have imagined in my pathetic, low-reaching dreams. He used Potter’s Field Ministries to breath life back into me. I was revived from death and destruction. The road I walked led to a place completely devoid of hope, joy, or love. I now have those things, as well as much more, to overflow. The encouragement I have received in little glimpses are things I am seeking never to let go of. They remind me of what I was and what would have been. I am alive today. That is a miracle of God.
And so, as per usual, I have no idea what the future holds. My only expectation these days is this:
“…exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think…” Ephesians 3:20
God is moving mightily in my heart, in the Flathead Valley of Montana, and around the world. I am running this race with all that I am and I will not stop. I am locking arms with some of the coolest, craziest, and most Spirit-filled/Spirit-led people I get the distinct pleasure of calling my family. We are all-in.
At any cost.
‘Til the whole world hears.
I will press on. I will be steadfast and immovable through the power of the incredible God I get to serve. To Him be the glory.