Sunday, July 11, 2010

mission fields

dear emily,

several of my kids have been on mission trips to peru, ecuador,
honduras, mexico, and soon brazil, but i have never had the
courage to do so myself.  when they return, they are always full
of exciting stories of miracles and acts of kindness that make my
heart sing.

but, i never go myself.

when we arrived in crested butte, i asked hans if i could stay a bit
longer after they all left.  it seemed a good thing to be alone,
spending time to refresh my soul in the Lord's care, and hans was
happy for me to do that.

but, circumstances have changed, and now three of my kids will be
home, two giving concerts friday and saturday.  i wrestled with this
in prayer a bit.  "but, Lord, it seemed good for me to have this brief
time here, alone." instead, i will fly home where i should be.

'good' is sometimes the enemy of 'best', and though i am too timid to
fly south and tend my south american neighbor, i am always happy
to care for my own children.  for now, i guess that's still my mission
field and one i dearly love.


"having then gifts differing according to the grace that is given to us,
let us use them."  romans 12:6


Natasha in Oz said...

I think that you have done an amazing job raising such kind and selfless children. You should be so proud!

The most important thing you can do continue to do for them and for others is to be their mentor, their teacher and their mother.

Blessings and best wishes,

Vickie said...

I second Natasha - You're doing your part in the mission field. Not everyone can be the "eye" or the "hand". Somebody has to be the belly-button and the little toe. Besides, somebody has to train those that DO go.

I've been a "go-er" in the past. I've accompanied my kids on Mexico mission trips for church building and medical trips. Started out going because I speak spanish and I would not let my kids go without me. Then I went for ME.

I cannot tell you the blessings that I have received, much more than I left behind. But it's not for everybody, and I thank you for giving your kids the desire, the ability, the means, and the freedome in Christ to go and do those things to further His kingdom!

Joan Elizabeth said...

I have a niece who went to South America in her gap year and is now spending twelve months at University in Mexico ... I think she is very brave when so young ... she was only 17 on her first trip.

We each have our own mission in life, but sometimes it's irritating when our mission is so ordinary.

it's a shame you missed your time of retreat. The photo is so lovely.

Unknown said...

I've had times when I felt that I got gypped when purposes were being given out, but mom always said, "He who is least on earth is most in heaven", so I try to maintain perspective on that and realize that everyone's role is important and even if we only leave our mark on one person, we've done our job.

Staci Danford said...

No one ever told us what a tough job being a parent would be... but in the end all we can do is what we think is best for our children.. We only get one chance to raise them and then it's gone. so... I say good for you!!

Rosie said...

Oh Lea, you are a fine mother...maybe there will be an opportunity next time...I shall pray for REFRESHMENT right where you go forth and Smile...xoxo...Rosie

Jenny said...

You are important, too. MAKE time for retreat.

Anne Lyken-Garner said...

When I feel guilty about not doing more missionary work, I try to remember that taking care of my own family is also one of God's commands for me. This also, is his work. Kids grow up and leave eventually.

I Love Pretty Little Things said...

Aaahhh...that was a hard choice but do we Mommies ever regret the times when we choose to be with our children. You are good and dedicated Mom!!!

Vee said...

Hans is such a good husband that when the time is right, you both will zip right back off to your retreat.

I liked what Vickie said...we all have a part to play and it may not always be on the front line.

Besides, mothering is a big mission field and Blogdom...wooie...a major one. ;>

Bree said...

He is so good :) There is no greater gift than seeking Him, following Him, obeying Him, and humbling ourselves when we veer slightly from the path with good intentions. His grace abounds, a Father who loves His children and has a place and purpose for each. Thank you for sharing your heart Lea-your faithfulness shows in the fruit of your sweet ones :) Bless you friend.

Mountain Mama said...

Yay for mommies who love and support their children. You ARE in the mission field, it just looks different.

Bless you for raising children that have yielded to God and gone where He has called them.


Cheri Bunch said...

Hi Lea,
My youngest has signed up for Navy Seals ... I told him that their are all kinds of mission fields and the Navy could be his. I used to send my kids over seas for missions and then I finally got to go. I didn't think I would ever go myself, but a friend who had bigger vision for me than I had for myself, encouraged me to go with her to India to speak at some women's conferences. That was a beginning of entering foreign mission fields for me. But I firmly believe that our mission field is wherever we are and the closer to home the more effective we might be because they see our daily life ... watch us as we love Jesus through our days. Hopefully we will do that well. I also believe that our mission as wife and mother are the highest callings that the Lord gives women. We are privileged if called to it.
Love your pictures and your stories.
Sweet blessings,

Farm Girl said...

When I was a young Mom, I wanted so badly to go to the mission field. My husband did not second the idea.:) I read that when you are a Mom, your children are your mission field. Then as they got older, God showed me that my mission field was my sphere of influence. So I started watching and my mission field became my children friends and family's. It became the people at the grocery store, it was all around me.
Your kids need you to be there, so they can fly. You are the stability.
I sometimes long for that bit of time to "rest in the Lord," But it isn't like you said always the best. Choosing to be a servant, is the best. I will pray that God sends you a special blessing just for you because you chose to be His servant at home.
Sweet post Lea.

Andrea said...

What a testimony to your love and parenting that your children are such caring adults. I think it's so interesting that we "want" to do certain things, but God has us in another season in our lives that prohibit us from doing so.

Deborah Ann said...

Ah, I know the angst. Those mountains have a way of tying my heart strings and wrapping it up in a knot. But 2 concerts? And your kids, no less? I'm guessing Sunday Lane? Sounds awesome! The mountains will always be there. Well, unless they all topple on each other, like Jesus predicted. Guess I wasn't too helpful? Lol...

Silver Strands said...

MANY years ago I served a mission in Japan. My son served in Russia a few years ago. Nothing like a mission to help you love and appreciate.

JMW said...

You are where you are meant to be at this moment. Being a mom and shaping the lives of your children is the most important job of your life. I know we may think there's always more we could be doing. When you kids are a little older and if you have more time, then take on a new task. But, be happy where you are now and don't worry about where you should be. It will come with time.

Karen said...

I think you definitely have your priorities in the right place. As a mother of grown children, believe me the time flies by when they are home and you need/want to be with them. I enjoy your blog.

Darcie said...

The HOME mission is SO important is it not! Often times I struggle with feelings that I should be doing much more, but then I am softly, and gently corrected and reminded that right not my mission is my children. And just look what you have done in your have raised the most beautiful, caring, and amazing kids...they too then can carry on. Thank you for encouraging us...not only by being IN your place, but by FILLING your place. If only I can be so faithful too.

Maria said...

Hi Lea!
Sometimes the "mission field" is local.
Yesterday, after quite a passionate sermon on "stepping out of the boat," a local man approached my husband and told us his story.
We knew we at least had to keep him in prayer...but we know he needs so much more.
There are so many hurting people right here where we live.
Sometimes, I think my mission field is my own heart... and what its treasures are.
Bless you, Lea... you have a kind heart.


Charlotte/For Such A Time As This said...

Your mission field is so important because it is the place of preparation for those who are sent out to different places in the world...your children. They are blessed to have a home to come back to where they can share their journey and the marvelous things God is doing in their lives. You have one of the greatest callings God can bestow on a be a mother. You are truly blessed!

Parisienne Farmgirl said...

You should be very proud. I have never done a missions trip and wish that I have.

Southern Lady said...

Home is certainly a mission field. I think you have done a wonderful job of raising your kids. Your blog is also a mission field. Many people are inspired by what you post each day. I am thankful for you sharing your wisdom with us all! Carla

Brittany Ann said...

Raising children is a mission field I cannot wait to tend! It truly is a calling from our Lord!

A Tale of Two Cities said...

There is a time and a season for every good work on this earth. Right now, you are giving your best to the people that matter the most to you--there will come a time when you can reach even further, and you'll be rewarded for both.

Cherish this time,

Thistle Cove Farm said...

You are so right...we all have a mission field, right here at home. You and Hans have raised Godly children; what more could a parent possibly ask?

Unknown said...

well, my girl is only two - the blueberry eating teacher - and if she asked, I would do anything - so I don't imagine that will ever end. But, I also know, after two years, if I don't take a few selfish moments for myself, I will wilt away.

People Who Know Me Would Say: said...

Good is sometimes the enemy of best - you've got that right!!

koralee said...

Yes...always a mothers heart to take care of her children.

Sounds like you are doing a great job my friend...what amazing selfless children you have! xoxoxox

Vivek said...

Hi Lea ,

Howz u doing ..? Finally back ..from some hectic days ...but again back to more hectic .days @ work ..

Nice ..the best about it ur Love be with all being alone ..we can't enjoy ..the beauty there need to be a company ..

For me too ..I can't ..enjoy if someone is not with me ..anywhere I go ..sharing is the medium where we feel and find the connect to happiness ...n real n reel life both revolves around that..

its Good to hear that ..your kids .. are having a gr8 time .. . everything from your side comes as soothing to hearts ..nice work ..

take care
keep smiling
God Bless :)
see you again ..

Rosie said...

Oh that purple field, with the mountain in the background is truly amazing...what a gorgeous Snappy ...Hope your day was full of His wonder ...Smile on Rosie

elaine @ peace for the journey said...

A mission field, indeed. One that's wearing me out but giving me good blooms along the way and as we go.


Gwendolyn said...

I've just been reviewing your posts and love this one especially! Your heart is precious and tender toward the Lord and He will let you know when it's right for you to go or stay. Sometimes staying behind and seeing your chldren and grandchildren go to the mission field and being supportive of them is our part and often our sacrifice. I've been on both ends. I'm so thankful for parents who, as the song goes, "gave of their sons to bear the message glorious." Today, my children and grandchildren are on the mission field.

This is a question we all should face as Christians - whether we go or stay, but all for His glory! Thanks for addressing this so wonderfully here.