I don't know if anyone loves this picture more than I do. But I seriously LOVE this picture. Because I don't just see it for what it is.When I look at this picture, I'm reminded of the amazing things God did in these lives. I look at this picture, and I'm reminded of who we were:
All of those apply to more than one person in this group, this photo. But, notice, I said who we WERE. God moved. During the trip, we literally saw joy and life and light return in eyes and hearts, mainly our own. At first, you could tell we were all still operating under our old labels- the lies Satan had so craftily made us believe. But each person had that moment--that moment when God showed up. Chains were broken, hearts were healed, and joy was restored! For some of us, it took tiny lessons through the whole trip, and for others, it took literally one ministry day.
I remember the disagreements,frustrations, and occassional hurt feelings. I remember the struggle each of us had in trying to find our place in the group. At first, I thought it was a mistake that this group ended up together. but NO!! I know fully now that each person in this MIG was placed very carefully by God. It wasn't a coincidence that everyone could relate to one another's testimonies in some way. It wasn't chance that we had 3 bold people, 3 quieter people, and 2 translators. Our seemingly unfit ages weren't happenstance. It wasn't just random that some liked kids,some liked adults, one wore a cap with a hip hop symbol, one wrote raps and loved rap music, some could witness easily, some preferred to just wash dishes, etc. God used our differences. We are all from different states, different nations, even. But we are family forever. We have a bond that cannot be broken. Yes. We had struggles. We did not see eye to eye always. But God used us anyway. He changed us anyway.
Now, we have been made new.
-adopted into God's family.
-able,through God's sufficient grace.
-having all we need.
Looking at the picture, we remember the struggles. But we see the redemption.
Jady. Jodi. Jordan. Gwen. Olivia. Taylor. Matthew. Thato.
Abba, We were broken. You made us beautiful.