The Lord had said to Abram, “Leave your native country, your relatives, and your father’s family, and go to the land that I will show you. I will make you into a great nation. I will bless you and make you famous, and you will be a blessing to others.” Genesis 12:1-2 NLT
God’s call to Abram began to have a special significance for me when I read this passage one day in January 1994. I knew that Genesis 12 is about God’s specific call to Abram. However, the Lord impressed in my heart that he was also calling my family out of our comfort zone in order to help fulfill his mission. Like Abram, we were to leave our country and relatives, and go to the land he would show us. The Lord did not give me the details then. He gave us the when, where, how, and why through the years. God led my family to some faith-stretching decisions that uprooted us from familiar family and ministry situations, not just once but many times. For example, God called us out of our:
- Denomination in 1996
- Hometown, Manila, in 2000
- Pastoral ministry in 2006
- Country, the Philippines, in 2012
Like Abram, we learned that doing God’s will is costly. We let go of precious friendships, missed time with loved ones, and spent so much moving from one place to another. It has not been easy. Each step required a larger measure of faith. Yet, God has been good. We have started new friendships. We have increasing opportunities to influence and bless others all around the world. We have experienced God’s faithfulness in providing for our needs.
Being on mission with God does not end with our move to Costa Rica. The journey continues. We know that obedience to God will cost us some more; but disobedience is never an option.
Sovereign Lord, thank you for your good and perfect will. Obeying your will has been difficult at times, but thank you because your grace has always been sufficient for me.