This is from the book The Extravagant Love of Jesus.
I did not know His love before, the way I know it now.I could not see my need for Him, my pride would not allow.I had it all, without a care, the 'self-sufficient' lie.My path was smooth, my sea was still, not a cloud was in my sky.I thought I did not need to grow, I thought I'd found my place.
But then the way grew rough and dark, the storm clouds quickly rolled;The waves began to rock my ship, my anchor would not hold.The ship that I had built myself was made of foolish pride.It fell apart and left me bare, with nowhere else to hide.I had no strength or faith to face the trials that lay ahead.And so i simply prayed to Him and bowed my weary head.His loving arms enveloped me, and then He helped me stand.He said, 'You still must face this storm, but I will hold your hand.'
So through the dark and lonely night He guided me through the pain.I could not see the light of day or when the storm would ware.Yet through the aches and endless tears, my faith began to grow.I could not see it at the time, but my light began to glow.I saw God's love in brand new light, His grace and mercy too.For only when all self was gone, could Jesus' love shine through.
It was not easy in the storm, I sometimes wondered 'why?'At times I thought 'I can’t go on' I'd hurt and doubt and cry,But Jesus never left my side, He guided me each day,Though the pain and strife, though fire and flood, He helped me all the way.And now I see as never before how Great His love can be.
How in my weakness He is strong, how Jesus cares for me!He worked it all out for my good, although the way was roughHe only sent what I could bear, and then He cried, 'Enough!'He raised his hand and said, 'Be still!' He made the storm clouds cease.He opened up the gates of joy and flooded me with peace.
I saw His face now clearer still, I felt His presence strong.I found anew His faithfulness, He never did me wrong.Now I know more storms will come, but only for my good.For pain and tears have helped me grow as naught else ever could.I still have so much more to learn as Jesus works in me; If in the storm I'll love Him more, that's where I want to be!
Can you believe it’s been year already? August 29th, 2009 at 6am I arrived in Arequipa, Peru to start a new life, a new adventure and a new walk with my savior. I never dreamed I would change this much, sure I’d imaged meeting new people, learning a new language and adjusting to a new culture. But I didn’t think I would be a “new” person.
A few months ago a very good friend had posted this poem on her facebook, I’ll admit when I read it I wasn’t thinking about my life, I was thinking about the lives around me. Then when I was thinking about what to post for my one year anniversary I re-read the poem. And this time it was as if the words where jumping off the page, because this poem not only applies to my life in general, but more specifically my life this year.
It’s no secret that this mission has been hard, just read some of my earlier blog entries, but I hope it’s also not a secret that God has changed my life through this mission. The friends I’ve made are no longer just friends, they are family! The memories that have been made are not those that will fade over time, they will last a life time. And the beat of my fading heart will never sound the same, because selfishness has died and a new love and passion has been born; and its hum cannot be silenced.
I want to thank each and every one of you for your prayers, love and constant support! Thank you for your sacrifices in order to support me monthly, I pray that you know that they are not returning void. More than just my life has been changed, the lives of the people here in Peru have been changed….BECAUSE OF YOU!!! Philippians 4:18-19 Says: “I have received full payment and EVEN MORE…..they are a fragrant offering, an acceptable sacrifice, pleasing to God. And my God will meet all your needs according to his glorious riches in Christ Jesus.”
Heavenly Father, I pray that you would open up the flood gates of heaven and shower these people with riches and blessings, may their cup overflow! Oh God I pray that you would supply their every need, may they never worry but simply trust! Thank you so much for their lives, for their obedience to you and thank you for their love and GREAT strength! God, Thank you for your faithfulness in my life and theirs’! I pray all of this in your Holy name, Amen.
In His love and mine, Brittany