It’s been almost a year since graduation. When I think back on how much I was able to do, it feels as though much more than 11 months has passed. God opened so many doors for me to serve Him around the world and I am so thankful for all that I have been able to experience, and for the growth, as well as for all of the people who came alongside me and supported me in various ways and challenged me to think in new ways.
For the past two months, I’ve been wrestling with where to go after the missions training with Encompass. Do I pursue an internship with Encompass overseas in Southeast Asia? Do I stay home? Is there another course that I should be pursuing? Everything that God allowed me to do last year seemed to point very clearly to pursuing the internship.
But after getting back into life here in California, I began to see some doors right here that might be opening for me to serve Him and also grow. God has been plugging me into some groups lately through my own church and another one nearby, and He’s really been using those to challenge me and grow me in some much needed ways. He’s also been showing me some relationships with others that I can serve Him in. It began to make more sense to me to stay here and invest in the relationships and groups that God has already given me, rather than try to start completely over in a different country where things would be even more difficult. It seems as though God can still use me in some very important ways here.
It was a tough decision for me, but I’ve decided to stay here for a while. I don’t know how long. One of the things that I’ve learned this year is that it’s very hard to predict what God will do next. Anything could happen in the next few weeks or months or years. And as long as I trust the Hand that holds my future, it will always be more exciting to me than terrifying. I know that He loves me, and that whatever He brings into my life will be for the best.
Was all of the training and other missions activities a waste of time and money? Not at all. It seemed as though it was pointing towards going overseas to serve, but then I got a different perspective: maybe God was using it instead to fuel my desire to serve Him and equip me to do that wherever He calls me, even if He calls me to stay where I am. If I hadn’t gone to Cambodia, I might not have been introduced to Encompass and been equipped through them to carry out the Great Commission wherever I am. I’m not disappointed in any way. As much as I love the thought of serving Him in another country, I don’t think that’s the right course for this time in my life, and I’m just as excited about seeing what I can do right here.