Why do you STILL want to be a missionary?
I asked myself countless of times in my years of doing mission as Fulltime Pastoral Worker of Couples for Christ. Last month brought me back to the WHY…
Why I still do what I am called to do.
August was a month of packing and unpacking – jumping from one event to another, travelling from one place to another, adapting to one time zone to another.
If I’m being honest (why would I lie? Lol!), I am physically exhausted.
Every little cell of my body is screaming, “I AM SO TIRED! GIVE ME TIME TO RECUPERATE”.
Reality hit me that I am no longer the Shayne who can get through the day with just 2 hours of sleep, I am no longer the Shayne who can sleep everywhere even on cement floors or makeshift beds. The Shayne that I am now can’t sleep when the lights are on or when I can hear people talking (unless I’m very, very tired). The Shayne that I am today yearns for more quiet time to regain energy. To make this long narration short “I AM NO LONGER YOUNG AS I THOUGHT I AM”. The concept of wear and tear is real!
I feel like I’ve been running for so long that my body is telling me to pause, breathe and rest.
The physical exhaustion made me reflect on St. Paul’s letter to Corinthians, “Run the race to win”.
In the brief moments before I close my eyes whether lying on a comfortable bed or sitting in the car, I could feel my heartbeat, beating for the mission. I could feel how much I (still) desire to do mission and in those brief moments, I could still hear God calling me in this mission.
Last month was like running in sprint – the more I strive to keep moving, the stronger and louder my heartbeat. I feel like I’m an athlete (how I wish I am as physically fit as the athletes) meant to endure and persevere despite the physical exhaustion cause I run not for the sake of running but I run the race to win.
The past month made me so grateful that God called me to be a missionary. I am much more grateful that He granted me the courage to pursue my calling and grace to persevere on what I am called to do.
Few weeks ago, someone asked, “what is the most amazing thing about being a missionary”
I have endless list in my head:
- You get to witness lives being transformed by God’s grace. If youare favoured, you will be part of the story of these transformations
- Youcan be sent anywhere in the world and you will be welcomed by a family who will consider you as part of them
- You get to know the person who God created youto be not the person who you thought you are. Because the more you get to know God and the more you do things for God, the more you get to know yourself.
- You get to experience a lot of “Water-Into-Wine” Stories and / or “Multiplication of Bread” stories with a front-seat view as it unfolds
- You will always be amazed on how God is so faithful in His promises, relentlessly proving that He is the God who provides. No wonder Christ commanded His disciples to carry nothing in their journey when He sent out the seventy-two ( Luke 10:1-12)
I can go on and on in this list. But the month of August made me realized that it is a privilege to be called by God to be a missionary – cause in between opening my eyes in the morning and closing my eyes at the end of every day, I get to do things for the One I love. I get to dedicate my day loving, honoring and serving God. Even if there were days where I failed to love, honor and serve Him as He deserved to be, He still continues to call and relentlessly pours His grace and mercy.
Last month, in the series of packing and unpacking while battling my attachment to my bed (cause nothing beats your own bed)… I could not help but be grateful for His grace that enabled me to do what I am meant to do. My heart is filled with joy knowing that I am where I am meant to be, not by my own might but by God’s grace.
RUN THE RACE TO WIN! This sums up my action-packed and grace-filled month. No saints became saints by being couch potatoes as much as you and I cannot be saints by watching Netflix all day! We are athletes, meant to run the race to win by allowing God’s grace to fill our limited human nature. We are athletes, where our daily life is our racetrack, God is our coach and the prize is union with Him forever.
Today is a continuation of your race, run the race to win!
Do you not know that the runners in the stadium all run in the race, but only one wins the prize? Run so as to win. Every athlete exercises discipline in every way. They do it to win a perishable crown, but we an imperishable one. Thus I do not run aimlessly; I do not fight as if I were shadowboxing. No, I drive my body and train it, for fear that, after having preached to others, I myself should be disqualified. – 1 Corinthians 9:24-27
A Catholic Lay Missionary who travels the world to share her story with God. She believes that life in Christ is a beautiful adventure.