Just a few years ago, an independent young woman sat at her desk in Austin, Texas contemplating what her missions pastor has said that weekend in church, “Why would you not go to the unreached nations to share the good news of Jesus?”
Jenny thought to herself, “There’s no way! Not me! How could God use a broken person like me do such big work?” Little did Jenny know God was already working on her idol of independence.
She had moved to Austin seeking a new adventure and new city. She knew what she wanted; work for an influential company and serve the city, get paid well, and retire comfortably. She was sure that God had called her to be a witness in the workplace. God, however, had another plan. He called her to go to a foreign country in East Asia and spread the gospel to people who have never heard.
In preparation for her big move to she had to quit her job. Instantly, Jenny felt like a part of herself was stripped away. This caused pain and revealed to Jenny how much she found her identity in her work. Despite the pain, she kept following God’s plan for her to move overseas.
Fast forward to Jenny’s first week as an international intern with Cru in East Asia. Internet is not available, phones will not turn on, and the writing on street signs make no sense. These struggles were not what she expected.
At first Jenny thought to herself, I can get through this; I’ve always worked hard. But it didn't get better. These things didn't just fade. Jenny was helpless and fed up. She couldn't do anything without the help of her teammates and asking God to do big things.
She cried out to God in that moment and told him, “God, I know you have me in East Asia for a reason and having me go through these struggles for a reason as well. I need to give these things up to you.” Jenny had to surrender her independence to God.
It took moving to a foreign land for her to really give it all to God. Jenny is choosing daily surrender and dependence on God and her teammates because she isn’t meant to do it on her own.
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As much as we would like to believe that there is one good strategy to bring Christ’s good news to the ends of the Earth, there isn’t. One technique may work perfectly in one conversation only to fail over and over again when we apply that same technique to other situations. Every heart is different, and the map to pierce each heart with the gospel is different.
"We’ve been praying that God would direct us to students who are ready to receive his gospel or who have already trusted in Jesus and are ready to share the gospel themselves. We knew these people existed on our campus; but, after years of reaching out, meeting such students seemed impossible."
We’re not always guaranteed that we will see our dream of students taking steps of faith come to fruition. So when we do see this dream become reality, we should see it for what it is, as a mighty miracle from God. And, to our continual amazement and praise, it seems like this miracle is occurring almost daily on our college campuses here.
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