I have a confession to make: I was scared. Yeah, last week I showed you my vintage, crunchy bangs. That sure took obedience. And even though I can now do what was impossible in the pictures (like brush my hands through my hair like I just don’t care), I actually did care.
I cared about waving bye to my guy and my girls, and then hopping on a plane while gulping down gobs of nervous butterflies, and listening to the sound of Celine Dion’s “All By Myself” playing in my head.
In my last-minute nervousness, I didn’t want to go, and definitely not all by myself. Yet I knew God wanted me to go solo. I didn’t like it, or the doubts that tried to jump into my carry-on.
I usually had family waiting in the wings to cling to and cry to when I faced Goliath fears. And I always—always—had Mom on speed-dial to calm me down and straighten me out. If she’d answer from Heaven, I would’ve dialed her up.
But God did what only He could do. He showed up so BIG in my little wild obedience. I can barely contain it, about as much as I can contain the ocean in my hands. But I’ll share a few life-giving, God-hovering drops.
As soon as my feet hit the ground, my heart almost bounced up to Heaven. There were only a few of us still lingering at baggage claim to see the show. A family waiting with banners and signs and countless smiles that could light up a runway, all pointing to the girl who walked behind me. I stepped to the side, stopped and stared, feeling out of place, but right at home.
Then a Mama emerged from the cheering crowd to embrace her missionary daughter. Streaming tears down cheeks and tangled arms that refused to relinquish told me it had been so long since their last embrace.
For a daughter still standing on fresh grounds of grief well over a year out, I stood frozen. Mesmerized. And grateful for the living picture God painted before my eyes of what my homecoming would one day look like after I finish my work here—on this mission field of sorts.
I jolted back to reality when my ride pulled up to the curb to pick me up. Like a mama picking up a school girl. A local conferee, my first “borrowed Mama,” and a proud grandmother of nine, had graciously offered to pick this complete stranger up, who she’d never met, emphasis added. For the love of God, why would someone do that? Oh yeah—for the love of God. Talk about a pure pick-me-up from Jesus.
And no sooner did I check into the conference hotel, I met a mom who had no room. And here I was a daughter who had no roommate. A match made in, well, you know. We shared a room, and our hearts, throughout the weekend.
That would’ve been enough. My plate was full. Day one and done. But God piled on even more—BIG, Texas-style portions, doling on the gravy and richness, with precious God moments and transparent, pour-your-heart-out conversations. Topped off with tender messages of sweeping love, freedom in Christ to tell our stories, to use our voice and hands to speak and write—and to give—to those who have no voice.
But on the third day, there it was again. Unsettling fear. I wanted to hurl. And run. Not because I was meeting with a literary agent, but because I had to throw my story on the table. To do that, I had to be willing to rip my heart out, and just let it drip.
As I waited before my appointment, and before I could lose my words or my lunch, another precious borrowed mama, a “Mimi” close to my mom’s age, asked if she could pray for me.
“Jesus, heal her back—and all her broken places,” she requested with love and boldness. I can’t explain it, but it was just like I was praying with Mom. Like she was there. Holding my hands while Jesus held my heart.
So I confidently walked in on a borrowed mama’s prayer, and I knew that I walked out with my own mama’s answered prayer. I also walked away with a new friend, who happens to now be my agent. Yep, God did some BIG things in Dallas. At the Declare Conference:
I went to learn how to be a better writer and blogger–I returned as a better person.
I went unknown and alone—and came home with new friends who feel like family.
I went to meet bloggers and an agent—and I met Jesus—in each and every one of them.
I gave a small seed of wild obedience, and God enlarged my heart and grew my faith bigger than the whole state of Texas! Now that’s BIG y’all!
Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us… Ephesians 3:20
Thank you for walking along with me, one step, one word, at a time. It would sure bless me if you’d subscribe to my weekly emailed blog posts, and I hope to bless you right back!