Slowly then All at Once

I hopped on a bus and went to the beach on Tuesday BECAUSE I CAN. I mean, not to brag, but also our staff team had a personal prayer retreat day, so after a few tasks in the office, I was not just encouraged but expected to spend the day in prayer. And it was beautiful. I downplay a lot of how great my job is so I don’t sound like I’m bragging, but I just can’t hide some of these details.

I had a really full week with lots of cool stuff, and I won’t even cover half of it in this post because I want to focus on those prayer details. I read another book on prayer this weekend (big surprise), and as I thought about the challenge Craig Groeschel offers in Dangerous Prayers for people to ask God to “Search me; break me; send me,” I realised how wild my life is that I’m able to and encouraged to just hang out with the creator of the universe.

While I was at the beach, I spent a solid hour watching a group of surfers who didn’t catch a single wave. The three of them floated and presumably chatted a bit as the bobbed in the water and hoped for a good wave which never came in the time I was there. There’s a weighty metaphor in there for our expectations in life and something about prioritising the journey over the destination. I’m holding off interpreting or over-spiritualising what I saw. Though I did watch a shipping boat appear seemingly out of nowhere on the horizon and then look frozen when I turned my attention to it only to have it move a huge distance after I looked away for several minutes. It moved slowly but all at once, kinda like God does. Again, I’m not here to interpret that; I’m just sharing some details of my week.

Once I got home Tuesday night, I had a call with my TeachBeyond supervisor who lives in Australia and a contact who works with the refugee branch of our organisation who lives in Serbia. I was positively buzzing after that call because of the cool ways we discussed mobilising young people to work with refugees and what opportunities there might be for me to facilitate and encourage that in Oceania. I’d joked for a bit that I’d dropped off the TB radar because my information was slow to transfer from the European region to the East Asia/Oceania one. Now I’m finding my hours filled up with these empowering and affirming conversations with my global and regional supervisors who are excited about what God has gifted me to do with TCKs and youth in New Zealand.

Friday morning I got up extra early to join a four hour training with Lauren Wells, one of the world’s leading experts on TCKs. Even though I was exhausted, I powered through the rest of my day and squeezed in a half hour nap before our youth group had an epic slime night down the street. Watching our young people scattered across the local playground laughing and flinging bright coloured liquified soap flakes or playing poker under a tree or just hanging out in front of the massive slip-n-slide while their friends get coated in slime is just plain fun. I was certainly exhausted by the end of the day, and I’m thankful I had time to sleep in before my call with Nick the next morning.

Nick is redesigning my website, so it’ll have a nice facelift in a few weeks plus the return of photos in my updates. Nick is also learning about prayer and growing in his walk with Jesus, and it’s such an encouragement to listen to how he’s intentionally following the prompting of the Holy Spirit in his life.

In a recent message, I heard the voice of the Holy Spirit compared to a butterfly on your shoulder. It’s easy to brush something like that away, but I’m challenged to be still, to listen, and to see a slow then sudden movement as the Holy Spirit prompts me to join into some incredible ongoing work.

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