I really didn't know what to expect with our first on-site training with Wycliffe Bible Translators. What were these other newbie missionaries going to be like? What were we going to be doing for two whole weeks? Will the kids be okay in such a different setting, and away from us all day? These are just a sampling of the questions that were swirling in my mind when we found out we were going for this training.
Then God started whispering to my heart: "You don't need to know all the details, you just need to go."
Now for a person who loves New Years Day because I can sit down with my calender and plan out my whole year, letting go of details is hard to do. Little by little, though, I felt God relaxing me and helping me let go of my grip of things. By the time we left, I still had no clue how everything would play out, but I was at peace with letting God have control.
Really what He showed me again and again, was how much He loves me and that I could trust Him. When I set aside my need to control my life, that gives God the opportunity to show me His love for me. Our God is a God of details. If He gave thought to make a lizard more than just green, and to let water create a reflection, He will surely care for the heart of the child that He sacrificed His son for!
Like always, I was right to trust Him. Not only were the people we met kind and welcoming, but they have become family — people burnt into the landscapes of our heart. We will be better people because of their friendships.
The kiddos did not just survive, they flourished! Millie learned to walk, Nori drank in everything about missions she could, Banner bonded with his teachers, and they all just seemed to overflow with joy the whole time. The group of amazing women who taught and cared for our children for these few short weeks have had a hand in shaping them for a lifetime. Banner even came away convinced that one of his new little friends was going to be his future wife!
As for the training, it knocked our socks off. There was detail and purpose set behind everything we did, along with a constant reminder that it was for God and His glory alone. We had a chance to spend some time with the president of Wycliffe and his family, and got to see that from the top down, there is a servant's heart for the nations and for each other. Our time in Orlando was a true affirmation that we are just where God wants us to be serving!
So I want to encourage you that if you are a planner like me, pray about letting go of some of your plans, trust Him, and give God some elbow room to love on you more.