It had been a rough night. Something we had for dinner didn’t agree with my stomach. You don’t realize how far away an outdoor bathroom is until you’re running there in the middle of the night.
I’d asked God a million times why He wanted me attention all night. I asked Him why my strong stomach failed me. Why I was the only one dealing with the repercussions of whatever we cooked ourselves and all ate. It didn’t make sense.
That’s when He brought to mind what our host said about spiritual warfare in this area.
So by the light of the moon with the early morning midst falling around me, I rebuked the enemy as I trudged back to my bed once again.
In the name of Jesus, I commanded him out of this town, this compound, and my stomach.
I wish I could say the rest of the night I slept peacefully and woke up refreshed and healthy.
But I didn’t.
I’m not convinced I slept at all—an hour tops. And I woke up feeling it.
I had no energy, no appetite, and no desire to do anything but crawl back into bed.
Yet as I was getting ready to do ministry that morning—I wasn’t feeling sick enough to justify staying home; a cranky stomach is a mission trip perk—He brought our 4am conversation to mind.
“You rebuked this. Why are you still living in it?”
That didn’t jumpstart my energy level but it did get me the strength to keep pushing.
But He was talking about so much more than just my mild food poisoning.
He was talking about everything else I’ve placed on the altar to give to Him then walked way with it still on my back.
I know in my head and my heart that I’m His beloved daughter yet sometimes I still live like my identity’s rooted in those who’ve rejected me.
While I know my worth was settled at the cross, I act like I have to earn salvation by doing the right things.
My post-Race plans.
We have a saying here on the field when things are uncomfortable or constant mission work gets tiring, “Remember December.”
There are a lot of things to look forward to in December: real beds that don’t move every month, consistent hot showers, and a full closet that’s not covered in paint.
But as December looms closer, there are also post-Race plans that need to be configured. Where am I going to live? Where am I going to work? Who am I going to build community with?
Of course, I have my dreams and ideals that I’ve set at God’s feet… and then lived as if I need to make my own dreams come true.
He’s going to be in control in the States just like He is here… even in the outhouse at 4am.
“You’ve rebuked this. Why are you still living in it?” He asks each of us.
We’ve got two choices to respond:
Try to keep carrying the weight on our shoulders, a weight we were never meant to bear.
Leave it at altar where it truly belongs.
Choosing obedience is choosing the second and not choosing to continue to live in problems we’ve given to Him.
Why do you need to put on the altar and leave there today?
What are you looking for?