Friday, June 22, 2012

How did I get here?

(This is a guest post from Danielle in El Salvador.)

How did I get here? The question rings in my mind once again as I stand on the street corner. Cars rush by, music blaring. Horns honk and the exhaust from buses makes clouds around me. The few streetlights bounce light off of the iron gates, and a gunshot fires in the distance. The night is alive. Men are on the prowl, teenage boys dressed as girls gather on the corners, and single moms selling their bodies to feed their children flash empty smiles at passing cars. 

What can I offer? I am miles away from the preschool carpool, minivan, and trips to Target that characterized my former life. Is this a mistake…bringing this suburban girl to the dark streets where gangs strike fear and poverty holds captives? I know I am in over my head, but I dare to try. I have to, because I’m here. In my weakness I speak words of hope into the unflinching darkness, and it seems to move. I build a friendship, share a cup of coffee, and pray for the mother’s child. I put a hand on the sagging shoulder and try to encourage, but I feel inadequate.

Then I remember. I remember why I am here. 

I am here because I get to be here. I am here because I know grace. I know the grace from Him who gives all to me, so undeserving, so weak, and so inadequate. I am here because I know brokenness and loss…but I also know new life. That’s how I got here. I am here by His grace…by His relentless love. I have this to offer, and this is everything. 

And so I can stand in that dark place in my weakness and in my knowledge of the brokenness of my own life that is only restored by my Savior. I can offer hope…that commodity that is in short supply on these streets.  Yes, this suburban mom far from home can speak words of hope. That is how I got here, that is my mission.

Does anyone else feel inadequate? Like you are in over your head? How has God spoken to your heart in that place?


  1. Danielle, what a lovely post! I really appreciate this message of how it is God's grace in our lives that allows us to be of service Him. It is very timely for me! I was just praying through some feelings of inadequacy this week actually. I often wish I was a gifted evangelist since so few people here know the true gospel, but the reality is that often it is just hard for me and I always think of good things to say AFTER I've already had a conversation. God was just reminding me this week that I don't have to get down on myself for being what I am not. I am called to seek Him and to grow, and faithfully do the things He puts before me, to speak of Him and show love to others, but He doesn't fault me for not being at a place that He has not yet brought me to or for not having gifts that He has not chosen for me. I felt his encouragement this past week that though I feel inadequate in some of the ways that I wish I were a great missionary, that He does have specific work prepared for me, and those things also bring Him glory, even when they are not as noticeable. I've been camping out in Romans 12 this week and it has been such an encouragement to present myself as a living sacrifice, use the particular gifts given to me (and not be sad that I don't have some of the gifts that I would like to have), and to strive to walk in a Christlike manner.

  2. i just found your blog. I am struggling today with balance. I know that my children come first and that time with them is incredible, but the missions field I always looked forward to in my premother days involved me actually doing things in the field. Right now, during this time of transition with our project, my world looks very different. I Loooove being a mom and wouldn't want it any other way, but i struggle to know how to strike that balance well and not get bogged down by being away from the ministry "mountaintop" and "fellowship" experiences. It was good to hear some real thoughts and questions without fear in sharing them. I should do more of that..:-) your blog is a blessing!
    Sarah in Port-au-Prince, Haiti

    1. It's hard to find that balance between our ministry at home and on the field, isn't it? I think God likes to teach us mums that our ministry is also our children (and hubby!) at home.

      Glad you found our blog, Sarah! :)