God has made us what we are. In Christ Jesus, God made us to do good works, which God planned in advance for us to live our lives doing. Ephesians 2:10 (JB Phillips)
During the next five weeks, when the opportunities present themselves in Russia, I’ll be teaching a Bible study on Living Out Your God-given Passion. I feel a special connection to this message, because my “doing” (in the verse above) will be what I’m doing! So as weird as it might seem that a sixty-something grandmother who could be snorkeling in Hawaii or fishing in the Sierras is, instead, sitting in a narrow airplane seat for twelve-plus hours, riding noisy, crowded buses and trams, stumbling over uneven sidewalks, and swatting blood-thirsty mosquitos–I couldn’t be more excited.
For one, in between all that discomfort I’ve just described are fabulous home-cooked meals, exquisite ballets and concerts, lovely walks along the riverbank, and hug after hug after hug from loving friends who are like family to me now.
And for two, when I’m doing what God made me to do and planned in advance for me to do–my life gains depth and a significance that I could not otherwise orchestrate or accomplish. It’s like being in “the zone.” And even though it’s rarely measurable–meaning, I don’t know what impact or influence my presence there has–I know that it does. Because from the beginning, this plan was God’s plan. And his plans always succeed.
Again, I invite you to join me on this adventure. Follow along with my thoughts, impressions, and struggles. I do try to post frequently. Pray for me and my CrossRoads partners, Alla and Tanya. Drop me a note about what you’re doing too. Even though I’m half-a-world away, I care. A lot.
And in the meantime, ponder the possibilities of your God-given passion.
You Go Girl! I am praying for you! Have a blessed time and one filled with the visable presence of the Lord! Hug your friends for me. Pati
Will do! They love hugs. I appreciate your encouragement, Pati.
Frances judge says
Awesome! What an encouraging message. God can use you and has a plan for all ages. We have been on the receiving end this year, having volunteers come from all over to rebuild our home…and so many are at retirement age! I can hear the joy in your words as the Lord uses you to help his people in Russia. I will be praying for you.
Thanks, Francy! Yes, I also feel that joy.
Carolyn V says
I’m always excited to hear about your journeys … thank you for sharing!
You are so welcome! Thanks for always encouraging me, Carolyn.
Greetings old friend….(no pun intended). 😉 I have been meaning to write you for a couple days now but keep getting deterred from doing so. (Say…didn’t the apostle Paul start out one of his letters with a similar greeting? Hmmm) I shared how you were headed to Russia this past weekend at church and a few of them expressed concern for you. I assured them of your confidence to head over there regardless and we lifted you in prayer as well that night. 🙂
I also heard a song recently that brings you and your times in Russia to mind. It speaks of a person sent on mission from/for God and their trusting Him with the uncertainty of said mission. The common-ness(is that an actual word?) between you, Russia, and the lyrics of the song are so uncanny I have made it my prayer for you during this time in Russia.
The song is called “oceans” by Hillsong. I have included a link to a YouTube video below. Be blessed my friend, and I hope Christ helps you feel more secure upon reading this. Your friend, Timbo.
Wow. Thank you, Timbo! And thanks to your group too. Your prayers are so being answered. Instead of being nervous and wary, I have total peace here and more confidence than ever before. My trust is truly without borders … which is the way He wants it, don’t you agree. And if it’s of any help to those who worry, there is absolulte NOTHING going on here in Samara related to the conflict in Ukraine. Life is as usual.