Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Invitation

i did it!!  i actually finished my first ever extended fast.  i have never gotten very far in attempting to fast as i am hypoglycemic (i wonder what the dutch word is for that??) and so i've never gotten too far on the whole fasting thing, but i really sensed Jesus asking me to try it again and to give it 5 days!!!!  so, i did and it was really amazing!  yes, i did eat my evening meal but made it through my first 5 days w/out passing out, and i had such an awesome time.  i was reminded over & over again of just how merciful and generous and extravagant our Jesus is...especially when we step out & take a risk in obeying Him!!!

i really felt called into this fast to get up closer to Jesus and to give Him back some of the burdens that i kept taking back for myself...things that i have been calling the 'mountains' that will need to be moved before we can seriously make this move to Amsterdam.  i know these are 'mountains' that God Himself will have to move, but i kept looking at my/our own very limited resource and wondering 'how' this is ever going to work??  anyway, i was soon to realize that 'my' plan and God's plan in this fast were different (surprise, surprise!!)

the first day of my fast was sept.2, 2008.  as i've done for the past 25 years i read my chambers devotion to start off my day.  the title was "The Sacrament of Sacrifice" and he referenced Mary of Bethany pouring out the ointment on Jesus head...and in the closing chapter he says, "it is time now to break the life, to cease craving for satisfaction, and to spill the thing out.  Our Lord is asking who of us will do that for Him?"

i read it over again.  it was one of those devotions that really grabbed me.  i knew that Jesus was really wanting me to 'get it'.  all those passages about 'losing your life' and 'dying to self' were being brought to mind.  i was drawn into the presence of our heavenly Father and it was sweet...but challenging.  

my time of fasting and praying continued on and by day 3 i knew i really needed to take some time to journal about everything that Jesus was speaking to me during this fast.  so much was being said and i didn't want to miss anything, so i packed up my journal, Bible, Chambers devotional, and left for Starbucks.  i couldn't believe it when i opened my journal to start writing....

journal entry Aug. 31, 2007!!!  LUNCH WITH ERIC PICKERILL.....
THE INVITATION was given to pray about considering joining them in this mission to Amsterdam!!

journal entry Sept. 2, 2007!!!  Chambers..."the Lord is asking WHO of us will do this for Him?"
Is God calling us to 'sacrafice' everything and join Him in this mission to Amsterdam??

and we know the answer.  so NOT what i was expecting.  so NOT what i had planned for at my little lunch w/ eric.  so NOT what i ever thought God was ask me to do with my life.  didn't fit.  too scary.  too risky.  too costly.  

and then the Holy Spirit reminded me of my personal prayer the year prior....that i would be know to my kids, grandkids, others as a woman after God's heart.  that i would never be allowed to 'settle in' and get comfortable.  that i would always take risks for the Kingdom.  that i would surrender all my gifts, talents, abilities to be used by the Lord however and whenever and 'wherever' He chose (should have left out the 'wherever' part).  that i would be white hot for Jesus until the day i could not.  that i would finish the race well.

be very careful what you pray for.  it is clear our Jesus takes us much more seriously than we take ourselves!!  He calls us out.  He invades our space.  He messes with our plans.  

He invites us into His dance!!!  He invites us to leap mountains with Him!!  He challenges us out of our comfort zone!!  

He answers our prayers.

He reminds us of our history.  He has proven faithful in my life time & time again.  He has shown me His mercy & grace over & over again.

He dares us to dream.

And then i was reminded that as John Wimber said, "faith is spelled r-i-s-k".  This is the life i want.  to be fully alive, fully engaged...taking risks with Jesus until i can't!!!

thank you Eric for inviting me/us into your dream.

thank you Jesus for inviting me/us into your dance.

thank you my tif & d', aubrei, a'daira, ayden, josh & abby, ali, & levi for releasing us to accept this invitation.  you are truly making a costly sacrifice.  but, this is Jesus plan for you too!!  do you hear His invitation to you?  what dance is He inviting you into?  i hope you dance!

thank you church for releasing me/us.  for challenging us.  for allowing us to dream.

and to all who are reading this blog, our Jesus invites you too!!  "who will do this for me?"
i hope you dance!


mercy said...

I cant read your blog very easily because of all the lines on top of each other but managed to see that you wanted to know what hypoglycemia is in Dutch.Its hypoglykemie.

Hope thats helpful but be advised that most of the medical people here in Holland speak excellent English so knowing the Dutch word may not be necessary!


Asha said...


when I first heard of you and bernie taking this risk and leaving for amsterdam. I thought cool-- that is one neat couple. Then I came to know more and more of your struggles and watched amanda and john, and eric and julia go thru everything and came to the conclusion that you and bernie are not just a cool couple you are an amazing couple. Because you are willing to not stop until Jesus says to you too, you are willing to be fully in the kingdom till your dying day. I respect that, I admire that, and I want to be in that place when I am in your place in life if God puts me in a place of an awe inspiring marriage as yours. praying for you.