Photo by Stanley Bronstein
Life sometimes gets frustrating when there are unending setbacks. It is like taking a step forward and then realizing that you are two steps back. This can easily produce discouragement, pessimism, despair, and apathy.
Recently, I have been experiencing a wide range of emotions. With our departure date for Indonesia quickly approaching, there have been a lot of ups and downs. One day, we can be elated to hear some good news about our visa situation and then, the next day we hear news about some obstacles that we have to address.
I am coming to the conclusion that nothing is ever completely 100% set in Indonesia. It is easy to assume or to think that things will all work out the way it does in the United States. But this is not how things roll in other countries.
Therefore, we are left with only one thing – faith. The only way we know that a person has faith is by looking at their trust and obedience level. Usually it is measured by their prayer life, as well as to know what they are specifically praying for. People of faith usually pray because they know within their own power and strength there is nothing that they can do. Even when you listen to their prayers you will see how high their trust level is in that particular situation. No matter how bleak or difficult the situation, they have great faith in God’s promises and they pray them out specifically for God to deliver.
Our family and the Jakarta Team are learning the importance of having an eternal perspective on things in life. Without this, we can easily fall into looking at just the here and now and then get discouraged. But everything that we go through is preparing us for something greater. This is what we have to believe in and this is what we have to hope for.
As in the words of Apostle Paul, I was reminded, “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed. Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal” (2 Co 4:8-9, 16-18).