Tiff went to change the world.. But everything seemed to fall apart, and she came back jaded and bitter. Thankfully, our good and gracious God is not content to leave her that way.
When I think about obedience to His calling, I think about my parents. I was born in the U.S., but my family moved to Asia when I was 8 yrs old to follow His calling. Maybe it’s genetic, or maybe the seeds were planted deep in my heart since before I can remember because I feel a similar tug in my heart for Asia. In college, I seriously began considering missions.
With a healthy dose of bravado and naivete, I decided to just GO after graduating college. I didn’t have a plan, but this felt like something God put on my heart… and I thought if I didn’t move forward, I would regret it forever. So I went.
That year in Asia was the hardest year of my life. I felt I had nothing to offer, and I was acutely lonely. I questioned my calling. I became resentful. Daily, I cried, “God, if this is what you wanted me to do, then where are you? Why do I feel abandoned?”
In the 3 years since returning, I’ve been to grad school and begun working as a social worker. It’s been a time of questioning, humbling, healing, and redemption. I needed God to redeem my experience in Asia, and He has been so faithful—revealing His truths and shattering the lies I believed. Following my spontaneous journey to Asia, this current chapter has been filled with learning endurance, faith, and how to wait for His timing. He’s teaching me how to live my life with Him and for Him in the day to day. What sustains me? at home? at work? How do I bring Him into my relationships? my time? I want it to be His Spirit that guides and gives me life.
My heart for Asia hasn’t changed, but when I am honest with myself, the thought of going back to Asia really scares me. In some ways, that’s how I know that this is His calling; God-given dreams can only be accomplished by His power, not mine. I can’t but love His people, and despite my fear, my heart is still drawn to His work in Asia. This must be God, because if it were up to me, this journey would have ended 3 years ago. So now I’m in a season of waiting… and during this time, I really hope that I live with a missional perspective, that I form life-giving relationships, and most importantly, that He would be glorified.
Photo by Nathan Chang