Well I have nine days left in Botswana and I cannot even start to explain how incredible this summer has been. How often do you get to go to two countries having silent civil wars and four others that are 5000 miles away from your home?... Oh yeah and do it in 9 short, short weeks.
Anyway, I am sure that I will have posts that reference these experiences, and travels for may months to come. The processing through, Uganda, Sudan, Rwanda, Botswana, and Zimbabwe are just begging and I cannot wait to share those thoughts with you as they come.
Today though my post is completely based around the quiet time that I had today, really with nothing much about Africa at all except for the fact that I did it here.
It was based on Matthew 10:34-39. I have been trucking through Matthew 10 consistently for the past two months and it just so happened that I bit off a huge chunk of it today that consisted of what I am confident in saying the most influential 6 verses of Matthew to me. So here it goes:
Matthew 10:34-39 (New International Version)
34"Do not suppose that I have come to bring peace to the earth. I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. 35For I have come to turn
" 'a man against his father,
a daughter against her mother,
a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law—
36a man's enemies will be the members of his own household.’
37"Anyone who loves his father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; anyone who loves his son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me; 38and anyone who does not take his cross and follow me is not worthy of me. 39Whoever finds his life will lose it, and whoever loses his life for my sake will find it.
We have a basic commitment. It is as simple as that. The commitment isn’t simple but the idea; the principle if you will is a simple statement. -- I take my cross and follow. -- No rocket science, nothing earth shattering complicated, just a statement that can be summed up by three delicate words that I must enact. Trust, Turn, and Follow.
Trust, turn, and follow. Three terms that we use when explaining Romans 3:26, three terms that explain how we shall submit to lordship, three terms that without a doubt can single-handedly change our lives.
Trust, Turn, and Follow.
Trust that Christ is the incarnate of a father who is greater than all. A father who is just with no prejudice, a father who can never be compared to any earthly relative because He is much too great.
Turn away from the old putting all temptation, desires, impurities, anger, rage, and malice (Colossians 3:5-10) on the cross. Not only putting them there but also turning to that cross acknowledging its power and allowing its forgiveness to release our burdens.
Follow out with our commitment, Not being ignorant to the fact that we are human, imperfect, sinners; and still relentlessly pursuing a God who is above that, who judges none of his children but loves unconditionally. Clothing ourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, and patience (Colossians 3:12). Following in the shadow of our maker wanting nothing more than to be persuaded by the being that has been consistently by our side longer than any one person could ever attempt. -- Our gracious, Abba, Father.