This is hard. This is painful. This is joyous.

Walking away from all that we hold dear and moving far away to a very, very, very remote place, God said so.

Philippians 3:8 says, "Indeed, I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have suffered the loss of all things and count them as rubbish, in order that I may gain Christ."

I have always loved this verse. I’ve always felt it as a true statement, reflecting my adoration for my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. But then, He actually asks me to give up a few things, things I unknowingly held dear. As the rubber hits the road, I recognize areas that I held a little too closely to my heart.

The worst of it is that these things ARE rubbish. My house, neighborhood, my wardrobe, my salary, living standards, etc. On top of that, I haven’t had to give up ALL things, as Paul writes. I have my amazing family that I get to serve with in Nasir. An amazing family and church body supporting me here in Houston. We get to do missions full time and get paid to do it! And of course, I could fill your day with all of the amazing ways the Lord continues to blow me away by his provision.

I’m in awe of this amazing God, this compassionate father who gently shows me the idols in my heart. And as I slowly open my hands to release these things I once claimed as “mine,” I can rejoice and say, “He is immeasurably more!”