My wife and I packed up our life in one city and started over in another place. After a year learning Arabic and immersing ourselves in Arab culture, it was time to put these things to use.
In some ways we felt very blessed. Here in our new city, we are taking up the work from a dear brother who has done a fantastic job blazing the trail. His accomplishments included finding and securing two prime properties, making disciples, and starting a small church of local believers. After listening to God and the counsel of our leadership, we decided to take up the task of carrying on his work, as our brother transitioned off the field and into a different role. This provided us the unique task of honoring the work that was done, while building the foundation for the future.
Having not just one, but two properties in this Arabic city is a miracle in itself. The potential makes us feel like we can’t dream big enough. But the challenge comes with those who have worked with our predecessor. Can they dream with us and trust us like they trusted him? Will they follow us into the future God has ordained for this place?
We are quite comfortable setting up life in a new city as we’ve made transitions like this several times before in our career. The chance to discover new places keeps us motivated, but we have never taken over work that someone else has started. Every day we encounter old expectations and systems that were set in place. These hurdles take decision-making out of our hands. Add to that a language we haven’t fully grasped yet, and i has a peculiar draining effect on our entrepreneurial spirit. Honestly, the tank has been running low the past few days. What can we grab onto that will keep us going?
In his book, “Start With Why,” by Simon Sinek, he asks the simplest of questions: Why?
My wife and I have asked that same question many times over the past few weeks. Why are we here? Why are we taking on this work? Why learn a new language? When we strip it all down, the answer is simple:
Because God loves us.
Because God loves the people we are now living and working among.
Why did God send his Son to die?
Because God loves the world.
Over the past few weeks, we have simply turned everything off, focused our minds on the present and worshipped God. We have intentionally basked in the love that He has for us and took the time needed to realign our identity in Him. In doing that, we have found it easier to remember His past faithfulness which has made it easier to dream about the future. It gives us strength to face the checklist of today.
God’s love is our motivation.