02 September 2016

extravagance

It's Friday.

We made it.

My heart made it.

I wasn't so sure there a few times.

God seems to have my heart at an incredibly soft, unexplainable place right now, and I'm not really sure why.

I was reading our daily "Operation World" with the girls a few days ago, and I wasn't just blurry eyed, but bawling and breaking through "Street Children of the World."  Their stories, the numbers, the reality.  I picture my Sofie waking up in a cardboard box, dirty and hungry and alone and worse, confident that there is no God that loves her, and I fall apart.

I think of the dozens of hundreds of ways every single day my girls have nothing but confidence in the many and deep ways that they are loved.  The confidence we have of the cupboard...that there WILL be something there.  The joke that it is to say, "I'm hungry."  The millions of children in the world who actually know it.  Who know homeless, who know abandoned, who know unwanted, who know abuse and manipulation and labor and nightmares and I am pouring mascara and snot and sweat all at once, and the girls are staring, because they do not understand.

because it is not a thing to BE understood.

In the last three days, once everyone is finally in bed and the toys are all herded and the water's refilled and the dishes are done, I have watched and listened and studied hours of Gospel-centered movements and church-planting and discipleship through the Verge network.  

None of it wasn't SO good and I've got pages of notes and a head swimming with ideas of moving dozens of people into our home, like, NOW to minister and disciple and live-life.  Bold ideas to be bold.  Convicted ideas I'll be sharing soon.  Brave ideas to be deliberate.  I'm seeing the students and visitors and interns and village members in whole new ways as some of those we are discipling.  What are they learning and replicating from my life and marriage and work and parenting and teaching and life-living? What still should they be?

And I crunch numbers for month-end minus Jodenel because he's wrapping up Charles' Evangelism and Discipleship course, and when he comes to the office he's telling me about customized student evangelism and discipleship plans for those living in or coming out of prostitution...for orphans and widows, for gangs, for the upper class, for the UN...and I am undone.  What pride, what passion, what beauty--strategic and deliberate and audience based, culturally relevant evangelism and discipleship, by men and women passionate about people.  People who they once were.

And Matt shares with the staff and professors a passion to see our students formed and trained and filled to STAY...to minister and pour out and live life IN HAITI for the transformation of Haiti, instead of getting an education to go to the States in hopes of financial gain.  And when he finishes, one smugly says, "well, that's asking a lot."

and it is.

Staying in Haiti if you don't have to, that's asking a lot.  Coming to Haiti if you don't have to, that's asking a lot, too.

But it sure don't hold a candle to God made flesh, poured out and broken for ME.

He's asking a lot.  But NOTHING He hasn't already done.

And my time with Him today simply confirmed it.

I read about Mary, busting that bottle of expense fragrance on Jesus' callousy feet.  Some said her pouring all that out on him was wasteful.

Yet Jesus commended her for her extravagant act of devotion, Chambers calls it.

Extravagant acts of devotion.

Our Lord is filled with overflowing joy whenever He sees us doing what Mary did--not being bound by a particular set of rules--but being totally surrendered to Him.

Now is the time for us to break the flask of our lives, to stop seeking our own satisfaction, and to pour out our lives before Him.

Maybe my heart's been extra broken lately because now. is. the. time.

The time that He is asking a lot, and we are honored and ready...the time to break the flask of our lives and be unbound to Him.

The time for extravagant acts of our devotion to Him that world may say are wasteful--seeking her own satisfaction--but which bless the heart of our Lord.
Now is the time.


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