Send me. I’ll stay.

I have a wanderer’s spirit – no one who has known me for more than a minute is shocked by this statement.  I love to be on the go…as soon as I get home from one fabulous adventure I am thinking and planning what my next one will be.  This past year because my goal is to get myself 100% out of debt, I did not travel as often till right at the end when I finished platinum status on American Airlines in just over 60 days.  That, my friends, is a lot of time on a plane – I don’t care who you are.

My favorite time of year is the Christmas season.  Traditionally, if I am not in Africa with my parents, I spend it traveling around seeing friends and family.  This year however, after spending most of October and November on a plane I decided that December was going to remain mostly sedate.  I wanted to be at home in my house, without agenda.  Mostly I wanted a time of quiet to plan out the next steps in life for my wandering soul.

Having been raised in church ministry and living on a mission field I was very well acquainted with the words of Isaiah, “Here am I – send me.”  I’ve memorized this verse, sung it, seen it on banners and have even lived it out for the better part of my life.  So, the past few months this has once again become my cry.  “Here I am Lord, I have an angst to move, I feel the restlessness beginning to set it….send me.  Lord, I could be of use to my parents in Botswana, or you could move me to the west coast I’ve always wanted to be near the ocean and the Pacific calls to my soul, I’ll move back to Hong Kong, or to whatever end of the earth you want to send me….I’m ready – I’ll start packing just tell me.”

But the Lord had something else in mind.

Scene: My apartment New year’s eve – I have spent the week purging and cleaning and organizing so as to go into this new year ready to face whatever God has for me.  Though I have been invited to several fantastic parties, I have chosen to stay in and spend time quiet and alone – seeking the Lord as to what the new year will hold.  (this is a first for me and was a sweet, sweet time).

I forced myself to sit quietly for an hour – this was one of the hardest things I have done in a long time.  To sit in silence and clear my mind of all the jumbled thoughts that wanted to come and invade was quite nearly impossible.  But finally, I got there – I sat quietly and asked to hear what amazing new thing God had for me because I was ready!!!! In the silence came a still small voice “Are you willing to stay right where I have you? I have things yet to teach you in this place.  I know that you are willing to go – you are willing and ready to be sent, but are you willing to say ‘Here am I – I’ll stay.'”  I’ll be honest here, friends, the answer was a resounding “NOOOO!”  I’m ready to go, to move, to get out of here.  I want a new life and new adventures and I have put in my time in Dallas already.  But as the Lord continued to do His own gentle cleaning and purging of my spirit, I understood what He was asking and tearfully and humbly yielded to His will.

I have a vision to what I believe the Lord is calling me to do and there will be some amazing changes this year – I can feel them, I’ve already set things in motion for some of them – I am in anxious anticipation of all that I have to learn and experience – but in the midst of it I am learning to wait on the Lord and his timing and to hold to the promise of the Lord in Habakkuk 2: 3 – The vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end—it will not lie. If it seems slow,wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay.”(emphasis mine)

So, while I wait for that vision and His perfect timing I will in obedience say “Here am I, Lord, I’ll stay.”