I DON’T WANT THE WORLD, IF I DON’T HAVE YOU. I DON’T WANT IT ALL, IF IT MEANS I LOSE YOU. I’VE TASTED AND I’VE SEEN ENOUGH TO KNOW IT’S YOU I NEED. I DON’T WANT THE WORLD, IF I DON’T HAVE YOU.” ~Love & the Outcome
God put this song on my heart several weeks before leaving for Haiti. Struggles seemed to be raining down on me and I was feeling overwhelmed. Too many things were just out of my control. I had a choice-I could let the worry and fears overtake me, distract me and live in a state of sorrow and despair. Or, I could surrender, truly, fully, whole-heartedly surrender to the Lord and give my burdens to the only One who could make a difference.
God never promised that we wouldn’t feel pain or fear or doubt. He never said that if we follow Him, our path would be simple, uncomplicated and always clear.
My home is very comfortable. I have heat in the winter and air conditioning in the summer. I have several faucets in my home that produce water with just the twist of one little nob. My cabinets are full of food. My refrigerator keeps any leftovers cold until I decide to pop them in the microwave and finish them, or throw them out. My toilet flushes and my shower gets steaming hot in a matter of seconds. I have a machine that washes my dishes and my clothes. A truck comes to my house to take away all the trash we collect throughout the week. If I have an ailment, I hop in my car and drive two blocks to the doctor who will most likely give me medicine to feel better in a day or two.
But, I struggle. I worry. I doubt. My heart hurts. I want. I need.
In Sobier, there is no running water. There is very little clean water at all. The only escape from the heat is a shade tree. The food is scarce; they usually eat only one meal a day. They wash their dishes and their clothes in large tubs outside on the ground. Trash piles up all around. There is no doctor to call or pharmacy to pick up Tylenol. But, their life is simple. Many things that concern us, they do not even think about.
But, they struggle. They worry. They doubt. Their heart hurts. They want. They need. And that’s easy for us to understand. After all, their life would be so much better if they just had all the modern conveniences that we do. Right?
Early Sunday evening as I struggled to climb the side of a mountain that would take us back to the village of Sobier, my body was exhausted. I couldn’t catch my breath. Our water was hot from sitting in the sun for several hours so it was not refreshing. I looked up to see that I was only about halfway there. I turned around to take a seat on a very uncomfortable rock. With my knees drawn up to my chest and my hands covering my face, tears flowed down my cheeks. My heart cried out, “God, I cannot do this. You HAVE to help me!”
God reached down, wrapped His arms around me and said, “When have I ever not?”
I just needed to lean on Him. In this moment, I needed physical strength, determination, and perseverance. But God gave me so much more. He filled my heart with renewed faith and assurance. He reminded me to look back at how far He had brought me. And although, at that moment, my mountain was very tangible, God reminded me that if He chooses not to move the mountain in front of me (and boy was I wishing He would!), He will help me to navigate the path. And He doesn’t expect me to do it alone. He knows our needs. He promises to meet them. And not one time in my life, has HE ever let me down.
Most people will tell you when they go on a mission trip, they feel God made more of a difference in their lives than they feel they made in the lives of the people they went to minister to. This is so very true. I pray that the people of Sobier felt the love of God through our teachings, our touch and our work. I pray that they never forget and always desire to know more of our God. I pray that they have been forever changed. I certainly have.
Seeing a young lady give her heart to the Lord and have her neighbors rally to support her was a blessing. Seeing the town drunk surrender to the God he has heard about for years, was incredible. Listening to the children answer questions about a Jesus who sacrificed His life to save theirs was heartwarming. Working alongside people who I could not communicate with, but could understand was amazing. But, deepening my walk, with my Savior, was life changing!
I learned to appreciate others and their culture in a way I never could have without this experience. I learned that love can be given and received between people who cannot speak the same language. I learned that it is definitely more important to show love than to simply speak about it. I learned that it takes very little time to build a deep connection with those whom you truly try to connect with. I learned that hot water is simply a luxury and not a necessity and that it really takes very little food to sustain me. I learned, in a greater way than ever before, that no matter where I am, no matter whom I am with, what I am doing or what I have, the ONLY thing that I ever NEED is God. If I desire to love Him, serve Him, honor Him, fear Him and glorify Him…..I will have all I ever need. So this is my prayer:
“I GIVE YOU EVERY FAILURE, EVERY DREAM AND EVERY MOUNTAIN TOP. I GIVE YOU EVERYTHING I THOUGHT OF ME AND NAIL IT TO THE CROSS. I LEAVE BEHIND ME WHAT IS ASHES AND WHAT WILL BE DUST. ALL I AM TO YOU MY GOD FOR ALL ELSE WILL BE LOST. I DON’T WANT THE WORLD, IF I DON’T HAVE YOU. I DON’T WANT IT ALL, IF IT MEANS I LOSE YOU. I’VE TASTED AND I’VE SEEN ENOUGH TO KNOW IT’S YOU I NEED. I DON’T WANT THE WORLD, IF I DON’T HAVE YOU.” ~Love & the Outcome
If you are reading this and God is prompting you to take a trip, to step out in faith and go, don’t hesitate! If God is not asking you to go, but to support another, give, pray and be blessed!