Came to serve, but ended up the one being served

“Let go and let God.”  I’ve heard this expression on other mission trips – one’s I’ve taken where we were not surrounded by the conveniences of home.  It seems to be a thought kept close at hand when in unfamiliar territory and situations where we are clearly reminded we are not in charge – like when serving on a mission trip in a third-world country.  We are God’s children and He is in control – always.  We sometimes forget this and try to take charge on our own.  When things are going well, I can sometimes drift toward relying on my own power to accomplish the tasks at hand when I should be totally reliant on God.

“Let go and let God” is not a phrase I’ve heard spoken on my two trips to Austria, but it is one that kept replaying in my mind yesterday.  The Haus Edelweiss trip doesn’t always resonate the words “mission trip” as we have all the conveniences of home at the Haus . . . clean water to drink, comfortable beds in which to sleep, wonderful meals three times per day, electricity and so forth.  It is easy to go about the daily responsibilities without a thought from where our provisions are coming, which doesn’t seem to happen as much when serving on a trip to a place not similar to our daily living conditions.  Our tasks here in Austria are much like those in our daily lives: painting, cleaning, dishes, repairs, gardening.  It’s easy to fall into a routine.  Easy, that is, until something happens to get our attention.

I started having indications that something wasn’t quite right after arriving last Friday.  By Monday, I couldn’t ignore the symptoms any longer and needed to seek medical attention.  It’s frightening being in a strange land, not knowing the language, relying on the mercy of others to care for me.  I was powerless and wondering why this was happening to me.  While waiting to be seen at the hospital, I was praying and trying to understand the meaning of why this was happening.  I not only was unable to serve at the Haus at that time, but two others who were caring for me weren’t able to perform their duties at the Haus either.

The phrase “let go and let God” came flooding into my thoughts.  I had to let go of the situation and let God be rightfully in control.  I knew that; I just needed to be reminded again.  We are powerless on our own, but with God, all things are possible.

It was incredibly humbling to come here to serve and end up the one being served by others.  It was touching to see my brothers and sisters in Christ, some who I didn’t even know before this trip, come support me and walk beside me on this journey by being the hands and feet of Jesus.  No matter where we are, we are never alone because God is with us, and we just need to release our circumstances and let Him provide for our every need.  As always, it will be sweeter than anything we can image as He loves us beyond measure and wants to be there for us in all that we do – we just need to let go and let God.

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