Earlier this week I returned from a 10-day trip to Mexico. Deep in the heart of Mexico is a place of adventure, where jungles, forests, rivers and waterfalls cover the land. Places I’d never imagined, places I’ve now seen with my own eyes.
On the plane towards Mexico City, my traveling companion and I were talking about mission trips, and she said to me, “every time you leave your house its a mission trip”. I think I’ve heard this before, but I didn’t think about it in the way I did that day. I never thought that going to Mexico was just some thing I wanted to do. It has always been a God thing.
For months the flights had cost over $500, and one Friday evening in January, they dropped to $250. We asked God if it was His will that we go, that the flights would still be that price 24 hours later, when the Sabbath sun had set. And they were.
In planning for our trip, and contacting family members in Mexico, we discovered that the week we would be there, was a week when many family members would be off work because of the Holy Week celebrations.
Being involved with organizing two major events in the coming weeks gave us a little extra stress to take a break from, and God knew exactly when everything was to fall into place.
And there I was, sitting on a plane, wondering what it was that God would have me to on my mission to Mexico. Of course I should have already known; I should have already thought about it, but then again, should I? God reveals His will to us in His perfect time, not based on what we think time even is. There was a purpose, I could feel it, and so I prayed.
My prayer was simple, “Lord, let your light shine through me, in some small way”.
While in Mexico, we took a 2-day trip to Vera Cruz, on the gulf coast. We went to a town that was known for its abundance of people who practice healing and cleansing along with some sort of witchcraft. We were forewarned by many to stay away from these particular people, who would try to read our palms, and “cleanse us” during our stay there.
Arriving to La Victoria at 6 AM after a 10 hour bus ride was a surreal experience. The mountain was covered with a thick mist, early morning jungle vibes. It looked mysterious, like uncharted territory waiting to be explored. Walking to the market to buy breakfast was so refreshing, and on our way there, walking past a beach where the lake slept. As we were walking home, a lady spoke to us in the street, saying something about “la luz”. No one seemed to understand her, but somehow I felt I did. Twice, she said something about “la luz”, and in that moment, I realized what she saw. Somehow, in a way I cannot explain, she saw light around us. She saw light IN us.
What a powerful moment to contemplate. What a divine revelation of power and promise. I saw in that moment the power that so many of us are blind to. Why don’t we all see the light? Why doesn’t it shine so brightly in us? I believe that the woman understood light and darkness, good and evil. And though it is not for me to judge which side she is on, I do know one thing – the light of heaven shined through me to pierce the darkness in Catemaco. Even throughout the remainder of our time there, we were not approached once to have our palm read, or to be “cleansed”. Not once did we feel threatened by evil or afraid to live in the present. I never needed to watch my back or feel alone – because the Spirit of the God of Heaven lives in me.
It really gives a different perspective when every trip is a mission trip. Now matter how close, or how far. Every day we have a mission – to shine. The beautiful part is that God has already given us the ability to shine, and He also gives us a reason.
Matthew 5:14-16 VOICE
14 And you, beloved, are the light of the world. A city built on a hilltop cannot be hidden. 15 Similarly it would be silly to light a lamp and then hide it under a bowl. When someone lights a lamp, she puts it on a table or a desk or a chair, and the light illumines the entire house. 16 You are like that illuminating light. Let your light shine everywhere you go, that you may illumine creation, so men and women everywhere may see your good actions, may see creation at its fullest, may see your devotion to Me, and may turn and praise your Father in heaven because of it.
Mark 13:33-37 VOICE
33 So be alert. Watch for it [and pray,] for you never know when that time might approach.
34 This situation is like a man who went on a journey; when he departed, he left his servants in charge of the house. Each of them had his own job to do; and the man left the porter to stand at the door, watching. 35 So stay awake, because no one knows when the master of the house is coming back. It could be in the evening or at midnight or when the rooster crows or in the morning. 36 Stay awake; be alert so that when he suddenly returns, the master won’t find you sleeping.
37 The teaching I am giving the four of you now is for everyone who will follow Me: stay awake, and keep your eyes open.
Jesus says watch and pray. Watch and pray in your everyday. In these next moments, watch and pray so that when God speaks, you can hear and follow His voice. He speaks to us so often, are we listening for His voice?
Light was the first thing God created on earth. The light of the glory of God shone here, on our planet. And He calls us today to reflect His light. To shine bright.
33 “No one, when he has lit a lamp, puts it in a secret place or under a basket, but on a lampstand, that those who come in may see the light. 34 The lamp of the body is the eye. Therefore, when your eye is good, your whole body also is full of light. But when your eye is bad, your body also is full of darkness. 35 Therefore take heed that the light which is in you is not darkness. 36 If then your whole body is full of light, having no part dark, the whole body will be full of light, as when the bright shining of a lamp gives you light.”
What light are you beholding? What light are you looking at? Are you looking at the source of light, or at a reflection of it. Are you looking at Jesus, or at some other Christian? God wants to shine His light directly through you, if you want Him to.
I was thinking about what Grace Space is, and what it should be. I love coming here and sharing with you guys what I’m experiencing, and what I’m learning. And I want Grace Space to be more of a community sharing experience. I want to know how God is leading in your lives too! I am encouraged when I hear the positive things that are happening in the lives of others because of God! Grace Space is a place of freedom, love, and life, and it should also be a place of accountability too.
Have you asked God to shine through you today? Have you spent time beholding the One True Light of the world? Are you committed to the mission?