A couple of weeks ago I went on my first mission trip where I had the opportunity to serve a ministry centered around helping young women break free from life-controlling issues. This ministry exceeded my expectations and it helped grow a deeper hunger inside of me for being the hands and feet of Jesus.
As I walked through the doors, I was immediately welcomed with grace and hospitality. I saw their bright smiles and faces light up to see a group of women ready to serve them. All week, we helped around the house, participated in devotions, cooked, and just hung out with the residents and staff.
My heart was so full to see these young women interpreting the Word of God and worshiping Him as they have seen how good He is.
Being on this trip was a reminder of how these life-controlling issues happen to so many people of different backgrounds, ages, and races. There are so many people hurting in this world.
As I returned home and reflected, I was reminded of this verse:
Although the Lord gives you the bread of adversity and the water of affliction, your teachers will be hidden no more; with your own eyes, you will see them. Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it. –Isaiah 30:20-21 (NIV).
I also like the Message translation which states “The moment he hears, he’ll answer. Just as the Master kept you alive during the hard times, he’ll keep your teacher alive and present among you. Your teacher will be right there, local and on the job, urging you on whenever you wander left or right: “This is the right road. Walk down this road.” You’ll scrap your expensive and fashionable god-images. You’ll throw them in the trash as so much garbage, saying, “Good riddance!”
Gosh, I just love how the Word of God makes itself new every time. I believe this verse is a great example of following God’s guidance within our lives, it is just up to us to listen to where He is telling us to go.
When we are so consumed with the world, it is hard to distinguish His voice through all of the noise however even in our darkest hours, He can meet us where we are. He can cause us to turn from our ways and into His loving arms.
As I thought about this verse, I began to think of every young woman that I met who lived a dark life but made a personal decision to change. Every young woman chose this ministry to help clean up their lifestyle and walk in the right decision.
It is amazing how God placed the right people in their lives to bring this ministry to light and how they willingly made the decision to remove themselves from everything that they knew in order to get on a healthier path.
This was a reminder of how the Lord can turn any situation around and show us how it was all for His glory. When I think about the testimonies ahead and the lives that will be changed because of their obedience, it brings a smile to my face and tears to my eyes.
I now have more women to call out by name when I spend time in prayer, more women who have made footprints on my heart and more women who I look forward to watching their stories unfold as they go on to become young disciples sharing their story and helping others to walk in it.