“…But an hour is coming, and now is, when the true worshipers will worship the Father in spirit and truth; for such people the Father seeks to be His worshipers. God is spirit, and those who worship Him must worship in spirit and truth.” John 4:23, 24 NASB
My first blog post left me breathless with anticipation of the things to come. At the time we were living in Clinton, Mississippi in preparation of our move to Kansas City, Missouri for Rick’s internship. I’d woken up that morning and while studying John 4 (for what was maybe the 100th time), was gripped afresh by the beauty of encountering Jesus. My reaction was the same as the woman at the well-I wanted to tell everyone I could about the Man Who Knew All about me.
That exchange at the well…of knowing and being known-not just being known, but being known by a Messiah that can speak all of the most secretive, painful parts of who you are out loud, into the heat of day-that exchange was liberating for me. What Savior can speak truth with such piercing grace to provoke a woman to run back to her town, a town full of people whose judgements drove her to the well at high noon in the first place, and evangelize? The very words from the lips of Jesus telling Who He Is colliding with who you are provokes an all-encompassing worship that cannot help but to be shared.
This reality of worshipping the only Savior who is worthy in spirit and truth is what drove us to Kansas City, and more specifically, the International House of Prayer.
When we moved to KCMO last summer I didn’t consider myself a missionary, yet, even though that’s what my husband was interning to become. Unexpectedly, these past twelve months have been one more step in my own personal journey of becoming that. This “pursuit of a heart dream” to be a missionary was (and still is) really a daily commitment to ‘catch up’ my cross. It wasn’t a fairytale “living the dream,” but rather the death of many other things- my promising career in the education world and the identity tied to it, the joy and security of raising my son near family and all sense of control in the direction of my life (amongst many, many others).
To clarify here, the definition of missionary that I’m using is Oswald Chambers’ : “A missionary is someone sent by Jesus Christ just as He was sent by God. The great controlling factor is not the needs of people, but the command of Jesus. The source of our inspiration in our service for God is behind us, not ahead of us….Personal attachment to the Lord Jesus and to His perspective is the one thing that must not be overlooked.”
As missionaries we do work.
Because the power of Christ compels us to partner with the the God Who longs to make all wrong things right, Rick and I have committed to the lifestyle of prayer, study of the Word and the teaching of the Word that we might amplify Jesus, our attachment to (read: total dependence on) Him and to His perspective. That lifestyle, with the fruit of acts of justice is what it means for us to be missionaries and is laced with the identity that has been deposited in our family: knowing Him, being known, and making Him known.
So we find ourselves back in Mississippi after putting down roots in Missouri, connecting with people and sharing the work that we are doing to advance the kingdom of God in power and fulfill the Great Commission, fueled by night and day prayer. There is no greater joy, no more exhausting work, no more humbling existence that I can imagine than to live simply, funded by the generosity of others to prepare the Bride of Christ for His return.
Fast forward to today and I here I am back in Clinton, typing at the very same table, desiring to extend the same invitation…to join with me in worship.
Rick and I are building a ministry team to partner with us in prayer, encouragement, and also financial support, and we would love to have you as a part of the team. You can find more information about how to partner with us here, or connect with me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org.
So I echo my invitation, come join us in worshipping Jesus. Even if that doesn’t look like partnership with us, meet Him at the well, hear His words and let them provoke you to worship, in spirit and in truth.