When God asks you to jump… Rogers in Rio Part Two
Updated: Mar 6
For three years I waited for a word. A new one I mean. The last time I’d heard from the Lord he told us to take our children and travel to the southern hemisphere where millions of people would be gathering in one place from all over the globe. Call me crazy but I kind of assumed that in those three years he would give us a few more instructions than “GO.” He knows me- knows I worry, I have fears. He knows I like to plan ahead, need to feel secure. It was only natural I would expect Him to slowly unveil this amazing itinerary for our Rio trip, gradually preparing me and giving us instructions along the way. I should have know better when I kept coming across this verse:
“The LORD had said to Abram, “Leave your native country, your relatives, and your father’s family, and go to the land that I will show you.” Genesis 12:1
Even still I waited. And waited. And waited. I waited to write, waited to blog, to send out support letters, to book anything. Oh trust me, I researched plenty and continuously asked around for others that might have had the same calling, hoping and praying God would send us with someone so we didn’t have to go alone. I was waiting for step by step instructions so I could be sure I wasn’t stepping outside of God’s will for us. That’s what we do when we’ve grown up believing God has this ultimate glorious plan that we have to mysteriously piece together, right? The book of Exodus is filled with exact how-tos from God to His people that they were to follow. I like that. You tell me what to do God and let me know what we’re building and I’m on it. You just give me that blueprint and I’ll help build You the best darn altar possible!
I guess it was about year three when I’d heard no further instructions and I started to get nervous. Enter doubt, stage right. I’ve learned that I can get addicted to fresh words from the Lord. It can give this sort of spiritual high that keeps me passionate about obeying, well that is unless the obedience is to take place years from now. This means of course that if its been too long since I’ve heard something, or if I haven’t had confirmation on that last thing (because you know God really ought to reveal new things to us weekly, it’s our right) I start to doubt the validity of His Spirit. Maybe I heard wrong? What if it was true then but not anymore? Somehow in our love of the Holy Spirit, we have forgotten some beautiful things about the Alpha and Omega- that when He speaks, it stands. His people waited for literally hundreds of years to hear from Him, sheesh. Someone once told me that if you aren’t sure what to do next, go back to the last thing God told you and keep obeying. For Abram, that was “Go to the land I will show you.” I guess we were better off than him- at least we knew the name of our land. But really God? Go? Thats it? What am I supposed to do, just book a flight??!! (crickets)
There’s a passage of Scripture that gets really twisted sometimes and it makes me go feisty redhead. When the Israelites were fleeing Egypt and were led straight to the Red Sea, its understandable they were a little confused at this so called “really great plan Moses”. Moses, trying to encourage their faith that God would deliver them, told the people- “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the Lord will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.” Is this not us so often? We so badly want to trust that God can do mighty things, so we sit there waiting for Him to deliver us. It’s not bad, it in fact takes amazing faith to believe this and sometimes we do need to stop trying to fix things on our own and let the Lord fight for us. But that was not the case on this day. The problem is this- Moses said this to the people, NOT God. In fact, if you read the next verse, “Then the Lord said to Moses, “Why are you crying out to me? Tell the Israelites to move on.” Move on. Keep walking. Forward. Walk directly into that sea and watch me to something impossible.
I wonder what it was like staring at that sea. Did their hearts beat faster? Were they terrified or little excited? Did any of the mothers look at Moses like he put his crazy hat on for thinking he would lead their children into the water? Because let me tell you- if God ever told me just to look at a body of water and take my family straight through it when I didn’t know…. Oh. I get it Lord.
On March 15th we booked 5 tickets to Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Didn’t know where we were staying, what we were doing, who to connect with. Nothing. But it became clear to me that what the Lord wanted was for me to jump head first into the water and know that even if I heard no further plan, He would direct us one step at a time. Do you know what happened the next day? He opened up the Red Sea. We miraculously found YWAM Rio through a God connection and the church in the city has begun something called “Jesus 4 all” It’s- get ready- a ministry during the Olypmis where they are asking God to bring people from all over the nation to minister to the nations through art ministry, evangelism, drama, sports. They provide food and lodging each day and set us up with a host family in Rio. Yep.
What does your sea look like? Maybe instead of dipping those toes, He’s asking you to jump in head first.