#servetogrow part 6
Last week I went to serve as a counselor at children’s camp. I was surrounded other counselors that were just kids: teens, pre-teens, and college-aged. Today I will get on my bike to deliver lunches to children in the low-income neighborhood that I serve. I will have a lot of help, but I probably won’t have one adult go with me.
I know you are sending your kids to serve, at missions and outreaches, because I’m serving along side them. You send them to serve on trips and at camps. Why do you do this? I’ll tell you why. You want them to grow spiritually.
You want them to experience God. You want their minds and hearts to be changed, so they will make good decisions with their lives.
One month from now, I will be in Ethiopia with my daughter Lucy serving with Storyteller Missions, visiting a few orphanages in the capital city, Addis Ababa. This is my third trip to Ethiopia serving with this organization. This year it was important to me that my daughter Lucy came on this trip. It is one of the main reasons for serving this summer. It’s so important to me for a lot of reasons. Lucy is seventeen, andI want Lucy to be exposed to the realities of a third-world country. I want her to see where her future adopted brother, God willing, will come from, what his life was like before our family and the culture he will be leaving behind. But my biggest reason I want her to go is to mature spiritually. I want her to see prayers answered. I want her to depend on God when she feels uncomfortable or unable to solve the unending problems children face in this country. I want her to see people on the other side of the world worshiping and serving the same God we love and serve.
It is obvious to me that I believe that serving leads to spiritual growth because I taking my daughter to serve in hopes that she grow spiritually. It is obvious to me that believe it too, because you are sending your kids to grow spiritually through serving.
Why wouldn’t I want those same things for my own spiritual growth? I do, and you should too.
Even if you served at camps, missions, and trips in your formative years, you still can learn more about God.
As Christians we often talk about the abundant life we are given, but so many times I feel that it is used out of context. God doesn’t care about your bank account. He cares about your heart.
On Earth, there will never be a spiritual arrival point. There isn’t a place you can get where you will know and experience everything God has to show us or our relationship being complete. That doesn’t happen until Heaven. While we are here, as we serve the Lord, there are endless lessons to learn about our magnificent God.
I could go to Ethiopia a million times, and that millionth time, I will learn something new about following Jesus.
Here’s the funny thing. It isn’t about what I accomplish serving Him. It isn’t about what I can do for Him. It isn’t about the amount of cloth diapers I can cart in suitcases half way across the world. It isn’t about how many children I can feed off the trailer of my bike. God can accomplish so much more with one miracle than I could ever do with my two hands and two feet.
It isn’t about what I can do at all.
God is concerned about my obedience and your obedience. Obedience stretches you and leads to spiritual growth. It draws you closer to God, and He wants you close.
I’ve learned this lesson, not on my couch, not in my church pew. I learned this lesson packing up cloth diapers and dragging them through 4 airports over 8,000 miles. I learned this lesson pedaling my bike in 100 degree weather.
I’ve learned so many things by coming to the end of myself but never coming to an end to our God.
I can do my best to put these lessons on paper for you to read, but I think you have to go learn them yourself.
This summer, instead of just sending your kids or your youth groups to serve, get out, be obedient, and learn something. Grow spiritually.
I like to share a song with each blog post, because music is so life-giving to me. This is a song we sang at children's camp, and I can't get enough of it! It's so fun!