Got Europe on my Mind.
The last couple days I haven’t been able to get Europe off my mind. These thoughts come in like rushing waters. For real. I don’t necessarily want these thoughts coming in, but they are, welcome or not. They are here. Justin asked me the other day to say the first word that came to mind after he said a word. He said the name of a European city and I replied so quickly, “LIVE.” What does that mean!?!?
I can feel God tearing down ideas and thoughts and dreams that I (!!!) have made. I can feel Him softening my heart again. I think I became quite cynical in my time in Europe and although I experienced a lot of growth, I think that I found TOO MUCH of myself. I am happy to finally feel like I know who I am, know what I like and don’t like, etc, but I think I may have gone to an extreme and became a bit selfish.
So back to Europe. When we came back I was so done with ministry. So done with Europe. Ready to just be a normal American (well, not normal…yuck!), but to at least live in a way that was familiar. Surprisingly (or not), I have not found this to be all I thought it would be. I am still not living close to my family (my side anyways) and I feel like I am just fluttering around. Sort of like I felt in Paris. However, I am convinced that this is right where we are supposed to be right now. I can sense God is beginning to stir up something in us. I don’t know what that means or if Europe is in the picture with all of this. What I do know is that I can’t get it out of my mind.
Justin and I went to two different churches today. The first one there was a pastor from Uganda speaking. The thing that stood out to me the most was how a lot of Christians will hear God telling them to do something and they respond with, “I will pray about that.” And actually, with that response, instead of getting up and doing it, they “disobey” what God is telling them to do by using an excuse of prayer.
The other church we went to tonight, the pastor spoke all on why the world needs missionaries. Hmmmm. Is God telling me something here? Anyways, it was just weird.
I woke up today thinking of a certain European city and it brought back an excitement and love for Europe that I think I had pushed away. “Somebody else can do it.” That’s what I have been telling myself. Well, can they? Will they? I don’t know. What I do know is that there is a HUGE population of people that haven’t truly experienced God’s grace and love… and I am willing to go. Scary. Sort of brings tears to my eyes and a lump in my throat. Maybe I need to go have a good cry! 🙂
He’s moving in you honey. It puts a lump in my throat too, but for different reasons. I love that my daughter is listening to the tug He’s putting in her heart…I love that healing is taking place…and I love that even though the future is uncertain, you believe in His provision enough to follow where He calls. I love you.
You are so amazing. Though I would love to keep you just down the road from me forever, I know God has big plans for your little family! Love you!
You put a lump in my throat. I lov eyou so much Jen and you continue to astound me in the ways you listen to the lord and the way you relate to him. I love you so much and im excited for what the Lord has ahead for you guys regardless if its not here in cali.
Jen, I know exactly how you feel. I have been to Europe 6 times, 4 of those in the last 3 1/2 years. There is a passion, a heart, a desire for Europe that I have had going all the way back to 2004 when I met you and Justin and even a little before that. How much you two remember that I don’t know. But I always will. It was a God moment for me. And through my ups and downs, Europe always comes back to my heart and mind. It has a special place nowhere else in the world does. I can’t explain it and I can’t describe it.
I haven’t lived in Europe or experienced a lot of the hardships you have. I don’t pretend to understand those feelings of both love and hate that you have at the same time. But even in my travels there, I have had some tough, lonely moments where it seemed God was nowhere to be found. Europe is a tough place to be. It’s an uncomfortable place to be. I don’t know if I will ever live there. I don’t know if I could handle it. I don’t know what the future holds. But I can understand your passion and feelings for Europe. And even after all that you have gone through, it doesn’t seem to leave your heart or your head.