THE JOY OF FOLLOWING

Our Central America trip has NOT been easy.  I remind myself that trials produce perseverance, and perseverance maturity. The Word say to consider trails pure joy due to the character development and faith it produces (James 1:2). When I surrendered my will to God, I surrendered my will to God. 

 Driving through Honduras.

Driving through Honduras.

I do my best to live with my hands and heart open, letting His Spirit lead.  “Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance, obeyed and went, even when he did not know where he was going (Hebrews 11:8).  I can relate. 

 The back of our van home.

The back of our van home.

Coming on this trip was the only option that Barry and I felt the Spirit on.  That’s how we live.  We follow the peace we feel from the Holy Spirit. It’s unique to many. We’re not following money. We’re not following comfort.  We’re not following security or where our family or friends are, as much as we love and miss them.  We’re following His leading. And that’s the only choice I have.  Actually, no, it’s just the best choice I have.  

I feel so confident that anything we choose for our lives is fine by God, and He’ll even bless it.  But it may not be what we were made for. So ultimately, it won’t be as fulfilling, or nearly as fun. Yes, following the Spirit sometimes involves sacrifice and tons of challenges, but it also yields the most fruit. And one of my favorite fruits of the Spirit is JOY. 

No, I don’t always feel joy squatting in public all over the place because I live in a van and don’t have a bathroom.  I don’t get excited to have to hunt for a cafe because it’s so freaking hot in the van I might die.  I don’t love dousing my skin in chemical bug spray because theres an army of mosquitos out to get me.  

But, when God, after hundreds of miracles, gets us to Puerto Viejo, Costa Rica and has us meet Luis, who just happens to have a free house from the church that we can stay in with 2 vacant bedrooms…the joy I find in God’s provision is indescribable. I am blessed.  

Amidst the trials that come with a life of surrender, there is an immense joy that continues to follow me.  How could I doubt His presence? How could I doubt his provision? How could I ever again doubt His goodness? He’s too real, too active in my life, His presence too tangible, for me to ever doubt Him.  Question Him? Yeah, daily.  But doubt Him? Never.

- Alison Merkabah