“Speak, LORD for your servant is listening.”1 Samuel 3:9 (NIV)
I still remember walking through the doors of the Global Ministry Center, Compassion’s headquarters, for the first time. An indescribable feeling came over me — I had arrived home.
I knew that I wanted to work for children, see God’s kingdom come by upholding the cause of the oppressed, and build a bridge between different cultures that need each other. But, never in my wildest dreams would I have thought that his plans for me included being a part of Compassion’s Trips and Visits Team.
Each Trip an Adventure
As a Trip Planner and Leader at Compassion, I had the opportunity to lock arms with my Compassion family from all over the world, minister to children, shepherd his people from different cultures and walks of life, and to speak up for the most vulnerable of this world. To this day, it is hard to believe that God allowed me to visit 20 of the 25 countries where Compassion works.
Each trip I led was an adventure, providing sponsors a unique cross-cultural experience. Together with Compassion sponsors, I tasted a diverse range of unique cuisines, such as West African fufu, cassava and gari. I heard the beautiful sound of Swahili, one of many tribal languages spoken in East Africa. I saw monuments like Cristo de la Concordia, the colossal statue of Jesus in Cochabamba, Bolivia. I was even chased by monkeys!
But the most precious memories are the ones of children singing and dancing, and of watching them in amazement as they met their sponsors for the first time. Each trip holds a precious memory, a divine appointment. I have learned that those “God moments” from each visit are what ultimately stays in your heart forever. What an amazing calling! What a privilege and responsibility!
“Created to Hear Our Creator”
Then, everything changed when COVID-19 began spreading across the world. My once perfect world came crashing down — not just in my personal life, but also in my work life. The impact the pandemic had on my work was devastating. After my return from Kenya, in January 2020, trips started to be canceled, airlines began shutting down, and my job that I loved so much drastically changed. Instead of planning and leading trips, I found myself praying with sponsors as I was calling them individually to inform them that their long-planned trip had been canceled. In those moments of despair, I knew hearing from God was essential. All I could do was sit at his feet and tune into the voice of my heavenly Father.
Early on in my walk with God I learned to hide myself in him, listening to the gentle whisper from the One who holds the world in his hands. We were created to hear our Creator!
His voice echoes through all the turmoil and chaos. It invites us to be still, resting in the assurance that he is sovereign. His whisper drowns out anxiety, it calms the storm that is within. His voice causes our hearts to be quiet with a calmness and inner peace. It provides strength for the day. God sees so much more than we do. When we listen to God and decide to trust him, amazing things happen.
Seeking God’s presence to obtain direction for our life is vital in our walk with God. I’ve known this to be especially true throughout this past year, as I walked through the valley of losses and change. When we do, he will turn tough times into a gift of grace, weakness into a gift of strength, transforming the worrier into a mighty warrior. Walking in fear is a master weapon that defies God’s promises and is not part of God’s will for us. Worry steals our faith.
Instead, I choose faith and trust in the name of Jesus Christ on a daily basis. As I begin my day with prayer and intercession, I am reminded that God is a God who keeps his promises. Seeking God’s counsel through the Word of God transforms, equips and empowers me for the task ahead. His power of divine strength is a promise and the assurance that I never am alone. He will be right by my side, showing me the way, just as written in Isaiah 30:21 (NIV), “Your ears will hear a word behind you, saying, ‘This is the way, walk in it.’”
- Are you open to hearing God’s voice? What is God saying to you today?
- What is the most important relationship in your life? Where does your relationship with God rank?
- As you sit with Jesus, ask him to show you areas in your life that are filled with fear that cause you to worry. Write them down and search for Scripture that will help you defeat worry in your life.
- How have the disappointments of the past year affected your relationship with God? Have they pushed you away? Or have you been drawn nearer to him?
- Walking closely with God will give you direction for your life and remind you that you are not alone. What patterns of discipline can you build into your life to get closer to God?