Return of the Summer
What did you do this past week?
After 2 months of missions, I’m happy to say I’m back in Austin! For me, I loved missions, and I really enjoyed the work that God was doing during my time in Ann Arbor and Detroit MI. I think God really answered the three prayers I had in preparation for the mission project - 1) Greater reliance in God. 2) Greater love/praise for God. 3) Greater heart for missions. - Though it was quite rough to experience the fulfillment of these prayer requests (such as getting a bald spot, facing anxiety, and experiencing faith crisis), I’m glad that I was able to better experience God’s characteristics in my life, and I’m looking forward to how He will use what I’ve experienced/learned for this coming year as a Junior (omg ._.) at UT.
But definitely one of the hardest things being up in the North was not being able to be with the people from Austin. I really missed the people, and I recognized that no matter where I go, whenever I miss a place, I either missed the food (obviously because I didn’t get to know the people well enough), or I missed the food and the people (sorry, food is an idol for me :P).
This past week, because of how much I missed people, I spent the time meeting up with people in Austin, whether people in the church, or people I had met through events. I’ve been blessed because during the meet ups, I’ve been able to hear how people’s lives have been since I was gone during missions, learn things they’ve taken away from the summer, and I get the opportunity to share about my own experience of missions and what I learned during that time. (hmu if you wanna hear about my experience).
In fact, this year, I’m looking forward to what’s in store (even through the uncertainty of life), because I sense a Season of Investment. During missions, I’ve come to recognize my love for people - I want all the people I know to succeed in life. Hearing what motivates people gives me great joy and I want to encourage people to become their full potential. Hopefully I will get to live out that conviction to invest into people, seeing them grow to become not only doers in their field/area, but also grow to be great teachers/leaders of influence.
One specific area I hope to see this desire of mine grow is in the church I’m a part of. This year, our church is going through a season of faith, since many leaders have been sent out or called elsewhere. With this, there are vacant positions that people need to take in order to lead and many members are almost rushed into growth to fill these positions. My hope is that I will be able to invest into the church in order to see people grow into leaders and have the church be at a place where it can, once again, send out people.
What’s in your way?
Anxiety/stress. I think one of the things I struggled a lot over the summer was control over a lot of aspects in my life. My mind constantly tries to tackle and understand concepts, questions, and problems that I face in my life. But because my mind is stubborn in that it wants to find the answer, it will persistently wrestle with a problem even if it is considered almost unsolvable (Ex. How is God good if He allows). It has made me realize that much of what I do is not good enough for myself, and rather I require a lot of faith in order to give up control of what I want to know. In order to release the anxiety/stress I hold onto, I must also release knowing the unsolvable/uncertain. Man, why are things so complicated.
Summer has been amazing. Missions was an experience that I will look back on a lot in the future. Not only did I learn a lot about myself, but I learned a lot about who God was, where I stood in comparison to God, and what I should do knowing what God taught me this summer.
What will you do next week?
Next week, I will be going back to my hometown, Plano, in order to relax and spend time with family and friends. I hope to meet up with more people, work on organizational stuff (planning for 2 hackathons! woo), prepare my schedule for the incoming Junior year (oh boy), pray over convictions, create many ideas that could potentially solve problems people face daily, and live out each day relying on God, glorifying Him, and living out the heart I have for missions.
I think I’m really scared, becuase I feel like people will reject me for who I am/believe, but I don’t think I’m doing this because I’m trying to convert people or force who God is to me on others. I think all I’m trying to do is really follow two main verses that the Bible says:
- The first is the two greatest commandments Jesus - “He answered, ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’” Luike 10:27
- The second is the Great Commission - “Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:19-20.
Tip of the Week
Here’s a few articles/reads that I think are interesting: