We are in the midst of our biennual conference held at the mission center where we work. The theme this year is “It is well”.
Here is a youtube video of the song that inspired those who were planning the conference for the theme. The original hymn that inspired Kristene DiMarco of course is a very old one, but one that I feel is just as potent today. Both songs are beautiful offerings to the Lord, who, though we are at times walking or crawling through storms and up mountains, is always with us.
IT IS WELL.
A sentiment which, for anyone who is familiar with the origins of old hymn from which those three words are derived, can feel the weight of what it means to be able to speak just those words, without conditions or caveats.
What it has meant for me is the daily recognition and surrendering of me and how much I am able to handle physically, mentally and emotionally. Sometimes that means doing much less than I wanted to accomplish that day. Sometimes it means despite my emotions and mental state to take a leaf from those who survived the Blitz:
Except instead of an earthly king or queen I am listening to God as He takes my hand and helps me to take on more than I in my finite self believe I am capable of. God is always able.
Finding peace in accepting whatever capabilities I have.
There is nothing like having a message being very gently but firmly repeated to you in different ways to help you move from the place where in your head you are claiming acceptance and surrender to where your whole heart and soul are actually accepting it. I am still working on it, and depending on the day I will be more or less open-palmed to God with my desire for control. But, over the last couple of months, and in particular during conference I have heard this message becoming more and more clear and been more and more willing to listen. IT IS WELL.
When we returned to the field in December, it was very hard for me. There still is much uncertainty to our future in PNG. But, with Evan being the strong, Godly man that he is, it is easier for me to continue stepping out. We continue to move forward through opening doors. It is difficult, because we really don’t know if these plans are going to pan out. We are trusting that as we walk forward God will protect us from smashing our noses against a closed door.
One place where I have been earnestly trying to tell God it is well and really believe it is with our finances. I want to feel comfortable and “secure” in our finances. To me, that means that we have enough not only to meet our immediate and future needs but also are able to save for those things that we want (like a trip somewhere for Evan and I for our 10th anniversary). The way things are in our finances at the moment, while not technically at 100% of our budget, our needs are being met every month. We just don’t have extra. And that is okay. We have our manna for today only. I need to continue to speak and hear myself that it is okay. It is well.
One passage that was talked about on the very first day that has stuck with me and I hope will continue to buoy me when I feel low.
Clive, our speaker, used the illustration of Jesus calming the storm in Mark 4:35-41. Jesus said: “Let us go over to the other side.” Among other things, he made a humorous but profound point. We must pay attention to Jesus’ words. He said they would go to the other side, he didn’t say “Let’s go halfway and sink in the middle.” An important distinction.
Part 2…coming soon…