Isaiah 6:8

And then I heard the voice of the Lord say, "Whom shall I send? Who will go for us?" I spoke up. "I'll go. Send me!"

~ Isaiah 6:8



Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Why I am Going to Burundi - by Nan Gray

I have a confession to make. I have an ego. You might be sitting there thinking, “Well, we all have one!” But, you see…mine’s been nurtured and fed for the last twenty or so years. I had a career where my ego was what drove me to success. I was in the entertainment industry and no, I wasn’t famous or anything, just making a living traveling the country telling jokes to anyone that would listen.
As a child, I was told to never speak up. And, when I did, I usually got in trouble. When I got in my twenties, I found my voice. It was loud and bawdy and irreverent. Let’s just say, I don’t think I would feel comfortable showing one of my old performance videos at church today. You might have known me back then. Or, you might only know the new me, the one that almost three years ago was reborn and rededicated to living fully in partnership with my Heavenly Father. Either way, the point I’m trying to make is that I’m working desperately on taming my ego and replacing it with God’s love and grace. It’s a struggle every day. I’ve grown to love the attention, to be the life of the party, the one with many friends and a person who has a reputation of “making things happen big and bold”. I can still do that, and am doing that today by writing this blog, but now it’s all for His glory and not mine!
Almost a year ago in prayer, I asked God to reveal to me a new path in life, to reveal His plan for me using the gifts he gave me and the story I’ve lived to further His kingdom. It became very clear that going on a mission trip was one of those things He wanted me to do. To leave the hectic world behind for just a short period of time and just be...compassionate, loving, quiet, and with a servant heart.
The current series at Forest Hill is called “The Great Eights”. How to be great in the eyes of God. This past Sunday, I was reminded of how as children of God we should always be a work in progress of decreasing us (our ego) and increasing Him. I’m a hot mess most of the time, but I really am trying to let Him be my all, my everything.
Ephesians 2:10 tells us “For we are God's masterpiece. He has created us anew in Christ Jesus, so we can do the good things he planned for us long ago.” I wasn’t following His plan for 25 years, but I am now and have a lot of ground to make up!
I’ve been told by several friends that have been on mission trips that once my foot hits the soil in Burundi, Central Africa, nothing in my life will ever be the same again. Can I confess to you that I can’t wait for that very moment?
Nan Gray

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