A few weeks ago, we ran into old college friends who had just had their second baby. As we were chatting, my friend’s mother -in-law asked me, “when did you start to feel normal with two children?” After a second, I said, “well, at 4 weeks post partum, we boarded a plane for New York City for a month and have just kept going ever since, so we haven’t really felt normal yet.” Now on the other side of that New York adventure, I can kind of hear how absurd that sounds. Taking a 4 week old to New York for a month! How in the world did we do it?
I’ve been thinking about this a lot lately. He really never asks us to do more than we can handle. And I know that I am completely privileged to have small children who are healthy enough to travel and that we are honored to be called to Peru as missionaries, and that we have had so many fun adventures already as a young family. But there sure are times when this lifestyle can be rough. And trust me, as I write this blog I am not looking for applause or praise or anything else but to show you that God really does give us grace in the moment we need it.
It was the same thing we told people when they said that they could never take in foster kids because they could never give them back. When we look back on having to return those amazing kids who we’d grown to love so much, I don’t know how we did it except that God gave us grace in the moment. Isn’t that the way so much of life is, though? You look back on scenarios and can only explain that God walked you through it – big and small.
Another gift he gives us is that he doesn’t reveal everything to us until we are in that moment. For instance, last weekend I flew to Orlando for a wedding. I was nervous about flying alone with the baby, and then being on my own in a new city without a car, and then having to fly into Atlanta at 7 am so I could be in church by 10:30 for the start of a big, 4 day (non- stop) mission’s conference. All of those things worried me, as I would imagine this trip. And, of course, all of those things worked out perfectly. But what I hadn’t foreseen was that most of the weekend I wouldn’t sleep because Gabriella was running a fever and miserable and not eating well. I know that that was God’s mercy to not reveal that until he was present in the moment to give me the strength I needed to get through – and only that amount of strength. He always gives us just enough.
And as a side note, I just have to say that another huge worry I had was that during the wedding ceremony Gabriella would get really hungry. And try as we may, she just will not take a bottle – no matter what kind of milk or nipple is in/on there, or who is feeding her, or who is in the room at the time. (She’s so organic.) So I was really nervous that I’d be standing up there helpless as I could hear my baby screaming for food. And you ladies all know what happens physically during those moments. But, because she was sick and not very hungry, that wasn’t ever an issue or a worry. God’s grace in the moment – even if it was because of something unpleasant.
Anyways, I guess I am giving myself a bit of a pep-talk here because we are going to need a lot of grace in the next few months and we have no idea what this is all going to look like. You see, we are almost at 100% support. Which is amazing, exciting, etc, but it is also terrifying. What on earth are we supposed to do with the logistics? How do we move our things? Do we go to language school after packing up our things, or before? Once they are packed and shipped, do we go to Peru first for a short time to be with Nathaniel’s parents, or do we go straight to language school and have someone else pick up our stuff? When do we leave? If our support doesn’t come in before language school starts in January, then do we wait for 4 months to leave, or do we go to Peru first? How are we going to have time to get our passports? What if my passport expires while we are in Peru? Do we have all the shots we need? Gotta pick up Gabriella’s birth certificate so we can get her passport….etc…etc…
These next few months are filled with putting the pieces of a puzzle together that we are just really struggling to figure out. And I know that every missionary has these logistics to work through, and that each scenario is unique. But what isn’t unique is that we all are called into missions by a God who promises to be with us and to give us the sustaining grace we need to get through each moment.
He will give us the grace and mercifully keep things from us until we are in the moment with him. I need to stich that on a pillow.
What areas in your life have you seen that unexplainable grace from God?See what else the G's are doing: www.servinginkas.com