There are moments when you can literally feel the sacrifice of obeying God.
Moments that remind you that obedience isn’t going to be easy.
I was hot, sweaty, tired, sore and overwhelmed.
The upstairs of our house was clearing 80 degrees and the air felt sticky and thick.
I hurriedly gathered up bed linens that were months over due to be washed, feeling the lack of time like never before.
An urgency to finish these great, insurmountable tasks.
I could literally feel the sacrifice our family was making.
My tornado of activity was tearing our house apart closet by closet, picture by picture, shelf by shelf.
The sell pile was mockingly huge.
The keep pile was sadly small.
The years of our lives limited to a few Rubbermaid bins and bright colored yard sale stickers.
My girls baby items and toys and rooms sorted… some things making the cut, most things not.
I was feeling the sacrifice.
My attitude was crying out to God for help.
My heart was aching at the thoughts running through my head.
The sacrifice was so. very. real.
The sacrifice was staring me in the face and causing me to tremble inside.
This is what it feels like to love, obeying God in everything.
This is what it feels like to give up our normal.
This is what it feels like to give my life away piece by piece.
This is what it feels like to say yes to Jesus every time.
To obey even when it is hard.
“And we aren’t even to the good-byes yet,” I quietly told myself. “I haven’t even left my home yet.”
How great the sacrifice will feel in those moments of tear-filled hugs at the airport.
How great the sacrifice will feel as we turned away for the last time, walking away from family and friends and support and our sense of normal.
This is real. And raw. And deep.
I thought of Matthew West’s song, “My Own Little World” and the lyric line that says, “Never give till it hurts.”
In that moment, I was giving till it hurt.
My girls were giving till it hurt.
As I write this I feel challenged.
Because I’ve never given like this before.
I’ve never been so uncomfortable for the gospel before.
I’ve never actually hurt because I’ve sacrificed.
But this is another level of obeying God. A deeper level. Something so foreign that I’m not sure I’ve yet to grasp the full experience. I’m still in the throws of the giving.
Fast forward a few years and we are on the field.
I’m still in the pain of the sacrifice.
Now, we feel the looming transition of another change… furlough is coming.
Another move. Another change. More sacrifice. More goodbyes.
I have a feeling that I’ll feel this sacrifice for many, many months and years to come.
It will be a constant act of saying yes to God no matter what and saying no to self again and again.
And I hope this doesn’t sound like complaining… I am happy to give, happy to sacrifice… It just doesn’t make it any less difficult or challenging.
Feeling the sacrifice in new ways each day of obeying God.