Thursday, 2 October 2008

I Want to Live Faith Like This....

I just read a book about a British missionary to Hong Kong, Jackie Pullinger, called Chasing the Dragon and God spoke to me through it's pages of what real trusting in Him looks like. It is such a timely read for me. One section that really hit me was when Jackie was speaking to a pastor about how she felt sure she was called into missions, she just didn't know where or how or what. It said:

I told him that God and I had reached a stalemate; He had told me clearly to go—I knew why I was to go, but He would not tell me where. So how could I go?

Richard’s reply was extraordinary, “If God is telling you to go—you had better go.”

“How can I—I don’t know where to. All my applications have been rejected.”

“Well, if you’ve tried all the conventional ways and missionary societies and God still is telling you to go, you had better get on the move.”

I felt frustrated.

“If you had a job, a ticket, accommodation, a sick fund and a pension, you wouldn’t need to trust Him,” Richard continued. “Anyone can go that way whether they are Christians or not. If I were you I would go out and buy a ticket for a boat going on the longest journey you can find and pray to know where to get off.”

I did not exactly hear bells but this was the first time in all those months of searching that anything made sense.

“It sounds terrific—but it must be cheating because I’d love to do that.” I still had the idea that anything to do with God had to be serious. I was sure that Christians always had to take the hard way and enjoyment was no part of suffering for their faith.

But Richard Thompson told me that it was quite scriptural. Abraham was willing to leave his country and follow Jehovah to a promised land without knowing where he was going because he trusted. In the same way thousands of years later Gladys Aylward journeyed in faith to China.

“You can’t lose if you put yourself completely in God’s hands, you know.” Richard was quite serious. “If He doesn’t want you to get on the ship He is quite able to stop you—or to make the ship go anywhere in the world.” I had visions of being storm-driven like St. Paul. I might land on a little desert island where one person wanted to hear about Jesus. It was an exciting proposition.

“Maybe you will go all the way round the world just to talk to one sailor about Christ, or maybe you will go as far as Singapore to play the piano for a week of youth meetings and then come back.”

Richard’s advice was extraordinary, but completely wise. Never at any time did he lead me to the impression that I was to get on a ship, grow a bun and get off as a missionary ready to do a “work”. He never suggested that I had to achieve anything at all, I had simply to follow wherever God led. I, too, felt I could not lose on this adventure.

Slowly, slowly, He is teaching me the truth about trust.

It's about living in love-- knowingknowingknowing to the very centre of your soul that He loves you, and it is a love without flaw. And then living confidentally in that knowing.

...There is no fear in love.

1 comment:

Annette said...

Wow, wow, wow!! I LOVE what you have to say, how you say it and your precious heart behind it!
Jackie has been so influential in my journey as well and I was just thinking about her yesterday as I walked in my neighbourhood and prayed. A great reminder that God can do ANYTHING, ANYWHERE!!!
Keep stepping out beautiful faithful one!

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