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Wednesday, May 5, 2010

My Mountain Outfit

I know y’all are dying for Dan to update this blog with the details of the Uganda trip and the amazing ways God has worked in his heart since then… alas, he is still decompressing, de-jet lagging and processing all that’s happened and you’ll hear from him soon. But for now, it’s just little ol’ me with some “crazy” thoughts for the day…

As we get further into this adventure of living the crazy life and further along with this ministry of Sixty Feet that’s grown out of it all, here is a comment that Dan and I get a lot… “oh, I could never do that.” Whether we’re talking about giving up cable, driving a scooter instead of a second car or going to Uganda for a week, we hear it all the time. Sometimes I even hear it from my own mouth. But truth be known, if I can do this stuff and make these changes, anyone can. Seriously.

It’s amazing for me to look back on my life and consider the many ways that my relationship with the Lord has changed me. Not just changed the way I live outwardly but really changed me, my heart. I can only imagine that some of my friends who knew me back in the day must read this blog sometimes and scream with laughter.

My sweet friend Kim is one of my oldest and dearest girlfriends. She and her husband Pete live with their boys in a town in the North Carolina mountains. We grew up together and had more good times than I’d ever have space to write about on this blog. For years, Kim has been drawn to the outdoors, the mountains, the simple life. I personally have always been more of a city girl.

One weekend when I was in college, I decided to make the trek from Chapel Hill to Boone, NC to visit Kim who was a student at ASU. I was so excited about my weekend in the mountains. In the days before my trip I carefully selected each outfit I would pack for such an adventure. That Friday afternoon, I arrived in Boone in my self-proclaimed “mountain outfit” which consisted of this: a rather short brown & orange plaid skirt, high heeled sandals and a tank top with sequins. Kim and her then-boyfriend-now-husband Pete nearly collapsed with laughter when I strutted into their humble abode out in the middle of Nowhere, NC and announced, in complete earnest, that I was ready for a weekend of roughing it in the mountains. I think this was something like 16 years ago and I imagine that Kim and Pete still crack up anytime they think of this.

There are many similar stories… Kim and plenty of others could confirm that I used to use three different brushes to fix my hair every morning before school (come on, it was the 80’s… you know most of you had a round brush for your bangs too), ironed every article of clothing I owned before wearing it – including jeans and sometimes socks and was confused by the idea of towel racks because I would only use a bath towel once before feeling that it needed to be washed again. I guess it would’ve been fair and safe to call me a High Maintenance Girl.

Well, to God be all the glory because He alone is able to change people. This “crazy” journey He’s sent our family on, to simplify our lives and to seek real treasure in Heaven, is not just something my husband announced that we were going to do and I had to go along. I want to do this. I want to start letting go of my earthly stuff and the “wealth” that produces a false sense of joy and security in my life. Although we missed Dan terribly, I wanted him to go Uganda. I want to live out my faith in a way that sets me apart from the rest of the world. And I want to live my life, the only one I’ll ever get, as a disciple of Jesus Christ – the kind that understands denying myself and taking up my cross to follow Him. We Americans really struggle with that one.

So the Lord has started a big work in my life and He is changing me, slowly but surely. I still have a long way to go but I’m learning. And on those days that I find myself saying “oh Lord, I can’t do XYZ…” I hear Him whispering back, “do you mean you can’t do it or you’re just not willing? Anyone who wants to be my disciple must deny himself, take up his cross and follow Me.”


kelly said...

This is fantastic stuff, keep it coming and God Bless!

Melissa said...

I feel God stripping me of all my comforts. I am learning that true joy does not come from these things, but from trusting him for fulfillment. Thanks for sharing. Henry said Davis is his best good friend now. Thanks for letting us hang out today, I enjoyed getting to know you. Hopefully we will see you at Westside in a couple of weeks.

A Simple Country Girl said...

Shelly, you are right. We need to let go of our stuff (material possessions, willy-nilly wants, selfish desires, etc.) in order to make room for God to move in our lives. We can only create and/or contribute to a ripple effect of God's grace if we make room for His waves to rock our boats.