There has been so much going on, sorry to have neglected you as of late. This was a very busy past week. I will be writing blogs this week to update you on the Youth Camp and my trip to Paris!
Today, I just have to tell you about an activity/conference/event we had at the church today. It was called Portes Ouvertes here in Belgium/France (Open Doors back home) and it was part of their Coccinelle Tour 2015 where they are celebrating 60 years as an Organization and reviewing the work the Lord has done over the past 60 years and encourage and motivate a new generation of Christians to support and care for the persecuted church. A woman shared about her faith, imprisonment and exile from an Islam controlled country. I have so often heard stories about my persecuted brothers and sisters worldwide, and my heart and prayers go out to them often, but on this trip to Belgium, I have had the immense blessing to meet several brothers and sisters who have personally endured extreme persecution for their faith. Being able to talk with this women was so encouraging. And it amazed me that she was so excited to meet an American. I was like, whatever, I’m just an American – That’s nothing special! You are in the Father’s hand! Your relationship and trust in the Lord is so convicting and encouraging! Oh to be used as the Father is using you! It was such a blessing and a gift.
For me, it was also really great to have so many of the students who has come to camp be there as well. I feel like they were able to get a really great view of the blessing they have here in Belgium, as well as the call and the weight of that call. It breaks my heart that so many people think that becoming a Christian makes things easier. They is just not true. If anything, in my experience it makes things harder sometimes. You end up facing a battle not only with the world but also with yourself, and dying to self everyday is not easy. However, it is worth it. I can’t imagine trying to do all of this without God. I literally would not be alive. He is my anchor, my hope, my joy, my all. It’s been unreal the transition, but one that I would do again and again.
We, in western cultures, too often hide the difficult parts of scripture and being a Christian, and because we do this, sometimes people feel as if we pulled a “bait and switch” on them. “Isn’t God supposed to protect me?” Then why did [insert illness, struggle, pain, life] happen to me? This must be God doesn’t not care about me or does not exist.
This is just not true! The Bible does say that God will protect us, but I don’t think this is always referring to our physical bodies and our comfort. He protects our soul, our hope, our salvation! He certainly holds all things together (Colossians 1:17), but I believe that He can use anything that happens to us for His Glory and our sanctification.
This should be our priority, not success, health or comfort. We need to readjust our ideas of Truth.
Here are some links that you may enjoy, going back to the Coccinelle Tour! Bedtime over here!! Free day tomorrow… I am so happy! Rest, here I come!
For Information about the Coccinelle Tour 2015 go to: 60ans.portesouvertes.fr/le-coccinelle-tour/
For Information about Portes Ouvertes go to: www.portesouvertes.fr
For Information about Open Doors go to: www.opendoors.org