saw your love (stream) flow

Posted: August 18, 2008 in life
Tags: , ,

well.

i’m back again. arrived in the flat around 11.20 last night from Romania.

and boy, was it ever a tough trip. i wasn’t physically spiritually or mentally prepared for the week really. the travelling took it out of me, being in a big group, being surrounded by kids who just need so much for a lot of our time… it was draining. the heat wasn’t too much of an issue, R and P were pretty similar temperature wise, so that was ok, but the running around, chatting, creating, singing, all in a foreign language… well, that was hard. i was all ready to go and find it easy, find that i slotted right in and that i could make friends with all the tough nuts, but… i couldn’t. God really challenged me this week to expect hardship. to find it hard to make friends, to be tolerant, to love beyond the normal realms of what it is possible to love, to cope with people who are so utterly different to me, to see both sides of situations and to feel for each. i found the culture, the country, the people, all strange and unfamiliar. i was a stranger.. i was unwilling to put in the effort required.

don’t get me wrong, i enjoyed the experience, i was challenged and i grew, i made new friends and i found my place, but i was resistant for a long time. i didn’t know why i was there. i couldn’t seem to forge the same relationships some of the others did. i loved the area we were in, i tried my absolute best to love those kids, and i pray God stepped in where i was lacking (which was a lot of the time) but it was a tough time.

but God was really at work in that week, He changed hearts and minds, he opened the way for the kids to listen to the Word, He softened their hearts, it was all His work, and the last night we were in the camp He spoke powerfully to me. the kids had all gone, and it was just the team left, we’d been swimming, had drink or two at the pool and back at the camp, just sitting chatting, and slowly heading for bed. As i was getting ready, i realised i’d not really spent much time just me and God, i got my bible and sat at one of the (now empty) Teepee’s with my torch and read a passage in Jeremiah that just cut me right down to the core. Jeremiah chapter 29 talks about how God will prosper his people in their exile. That He has a plan for them and He will restore them. That He will look after the orphans and widows. That He loves these kids were were with all week with all of His heart, that His love for them is vast and overwhelming. and that overwhelmed me. and then i read his promise in ch31 that one day we will not have to tell our neighbours and relatives to know the Lord, because his name will be on their lips and his laws in their hearts. ‘And I will forgive their wickedness and I will never again remember their sins.’ and that is what i pray these kids got from their week with us. That we love them, that that love is only possible through God, who does not remember their sins. that one day the laws of the Lord will be engraved on their hearts and Isus (Jesus) will be their best fried: Stui iubeste meu Isus. I know Jesus loves me.

i wept a lot of tears for the kids that evening, sitting watching the sky, praying and reading, asking forgiveness for opportunities missed and thanking God for his protection over the week.

now i’m back and there are lots of stories to be shared. somehow it’s easier this time. maybe because it was just ten days… but anyway, feel free to ask.

i thank you all from the bottom of my heart for your prayers and support this summer. its been a real time of blessing, of challenge and growth. i pray you’d see the change in me and that God would be at work in you too…

the journey is long, but interesting and we have a surprising God.

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