The last 12 months have been all about stepping outside of my comfort zone… writing and marketing a book, recording an audiobook, speaking in public, being interviewed for radio shows, appearing on national TV (live!). There are so many things I’ve done in the last year that five years ago I never would have thought I could possibly do.
For many people, these are small things. After all, there are hundreds of thousands of people doing stuff on a much, much larger scale all the time. But for a once-shy person like me who got nervous just to go to church or some other event with people I knew well, these are milestone things.
I read Crazy Love last year and committed to the Lord that I would step out and do whatever He called me to do–no matter what. I won’t tell you that any of this has been easy for me, because it hasn’t been. Truthfully, I’ve experienced tremendous fear and nerves time and again.
There are times when I’ve wanted to run away and hide and there are so many times when I’ve thought, “There is no way I can do X.” However, as I’ve stepped out in faith and asked God to hold me up when I felt incredibly unqualified, He has been so faithful.
And I echo what I read in yesterday’s Jesus Calling devotional:
“If you live your life too safely, you will never know the thrill of seeing [God] work through you.”
That’s definitely been the case for me. As I’ve gotten out of the safe zone, I’ve experienced God’s power and provision in my life like never before. It’s an awesome thing to be walking in His strength and might, because you know that your own strength and might would never be enough.
And this week, I’m once again stepping out of the “safe” zone. Tomorrow morning, my husband and I are boarding a plane bound for the Dominican Republic.
We’ll be traveling to visit two Child Survival Programs (one of which is the one we’ve “adopted” through your support of my book!) and we’ll also be visiting in the homes of some of the mothers who are a part of the program. In addition, we’ll be going to see some of the other projects Compassion has in the DR and attending a Leadership Development Program graduation.
We’re excited to have this opportunity, but I wouldn’t be completely honest if I pretended that I wasn’t somewhat apprehensive. You see, aside from the Love Like You Mean It Cruise, I’ve never traveled outside the U.S.
I’ve lived a safe and sheltered life. I’ve always had a roof over my head, food to eat, clothes to wear, and much more than most of the people in the DR could probably even fathom.
I know that the poverty and need I’m going to see this week will be far beyond what I’ve ever witness before. And I’m almost certain it is going to profoundly affect me in ways I can’t imagine right now.
But I know that it’s going to rock my world in a good way. And so I board the plane tomorrow, not knowing what lies ahead of us, but knowing that stepping out of the safe zone is exactly what I’m supposed to be doing.
By the way, since you all were an integral part in why we’re taking this trip, I’ll be “bringing you along with me” by blogging a little about our experiences each day and sharing pictures of some of the things we see and people we meet.