01 December 2008

newcastle 16

Lately I've been feeling like a cheater. I know this thought in itself is ridiculous, but still... it swims in the back of my mind on the hard days, when the support is down, the morale is down, when it feels like we came here a lot sooner - with a lot less - than we should have.

After four years of trying, we were given the chance to come here with a slashed budget for a shorter amount of time. Obviously, we jumped at the chance. It was not of our own doing, but was presented to us by the Higher Ups. By people who wanted to see us here as much as we wanted to be here. So we came, still coming up slightly short in the financial department. And I felt like a cheater.

The upside: it was the perfect timing, really. We knew it would be tough, would be a struggle, would be tight on all sides. But it was time. God had presented us with this moment in time, with a promise, or rather, the hope of a promise: it'll all work out.

And really, work-wise, it is working out. We are doing what we love, working with people we are growing to love, and getting to see something big and wonderful happen from way up close. And still, I feel like a cheater. Because between the cracks of those big and wonderful moments... still the idea of us not having measured up in that one area, still not measuring up. Never being 100%. Never being perfect.

The question of if we made this all happen, if we skipped a beat, if we didn't pay our proper dues... leaves me feeling like a cheater. Like we really don't deserve to be here. Like at any moment we'll receive a phone call, "The jig is up. The money's gone. Go home. Better luck next time."

And still, there are 176 people who at one point or another, believed in this with us, so much so as to give a part of themselves. It fills up my whole heart with hope and gratitude when I think of it.

God did that, not us. Surely, He has something in mind.


  1. You are so, not a cheater. You did not fail. You are where God wants you when God wants you there. Whenever we focus on money, we humans tend to get in trouble. Learned that the hard way many a time!

    God will multiply your loaves and your ministry. Ireland will seem more real to your long-term sponsors with your fresh images and stories to share.

    It's a miracle you are where you are when you are given the recession in the U.S. It is clear you're called to be there. We are blessed to be your friends.
    Have a Romans 8 day!
    Peace be with you.

  2. We, too, were allowed to come w/o the level of funding that would normally be required...we were very grateful for that opportunity. And it's been a chance to see how God can provide as we move forward by faith...definitely motive for gratitude and hope!

  3. I think that perhaps, maybe instead of using the word cheater, the idea of being unworthy is more accurate. That we (well, me, really) are so unworthy of all this (where God brought us, how he brought us, and the people here with us).

    And yes, that is in essence what grace is all about. That we are so totally unworthy of the gifts, chances, opportunities, work, lives that God gives us. The idea isn't to feel "worthy" of this grace. The hope is to accept this grace freely, without guilt or shame (or the remnants of a cheating heart).

    But that's a whole bigger can of worms that I'm just starting to realize lie at the heart of the matter.

  4. I think that almost everyone working overseas feels unworthy sometimes or lots of times or all the time. I think sometimes it's not as much about being worthy though as being willing. I always like to remember that the weak, foolish things of the world were chosen. It makes me feel like a lot better fit. :) It seems like WE put pressure on ourselves to be perfect because we have the idea that if we're here, we're supposed to be a saint. We're supposed to be good enough to deserve the opportunity, when that has nothing to do with it. It just shows that God wanted you there so much he was willing to work around the established rules to get you there!