This summer I served in Spain at camp L’Arcada. It was a summer of learning—learning about myself, about others but most importantly learning more about God. One of the biggest things that He taught me was that my identity rests in Him fully. It was something I thought I truly believed before this summer, but realized very quickly that I didn’t believe it with my whole being. I realized I leaned on what others thought of me a lot.
The Lord revealed to me this summer that He is my Ultimate Counselor, and that no one else’s opinions could suffice the burning desire inside of me to be understood. I read 1 Corinthians this summer and verses 15:56-58 has stuck with me all summer: “The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my dear brothers and sisters, stand firm. Let nothing move you. Always give yourself fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.”
I want to highlight one part that says “stand firm” meaning that our faith and identity don’t waver because of others' opinions of us. He is constant. I can rejoice in that, and free my friends and family from unrealistic expectations. They don’t have to be perfect, and when they disappoint me that’s okay because they are broken too. It’s a freeing feeling, knowing that your identity is constant. This was something I didn’t even realize was a problem in my heart until I was working with new people and the Lord graciously and gradually revealed this in me. There are still moments of disappointment or frustration, but understanding this new identity allows me to take every thought captive and reflect on what the Lord says about that moment. It’s beautiful, and, as I transition back into American culture, I realize this isn’t a thing you just do on a mission trip, but it’s a daily choice. You choose to walk missionally every day.
I am so thankful that the Lord led me to do Ten2 this summer. It was such a unique opportunity with an up-close view of what ministry truly looks like. Ministry is messy, and beautiful all in the same moment. I encourage you if you are reading this, pray about what your summer 2020 will look like, because He may be calling you to join Ten2! You won’t regret it and you will meet some incredible people, I promise!
2019 Ten2 Participant, L'Arcada Camp, Spain