Be Still and Know Then it was time to focus fully on camp. It was a week full of learning and laughter. But I soon began to feel discouraged. Don’t get me wrong; I had fun. But my small group was very quiet. It seemed like I wasn’t connecting with the campers. I began to question why I was on the trip. I was frustrated with the uncertainty: Here I was again, coming from a season of unanswered questions in Colorado, traveling halfway around the world and carrying the same feelings and doubts inside.
My mother writes me a letter every time I go on a trip, usually containing prayers, well wishes and a Bible verse. This year she included Psalm 46:10: “Be still, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among all nations, I will be exalted in the earth.” As I reflected on the words of this passage, I felt less disheartened and more encouraged.
I committed to live out the week fully trusting God, even if I wasn’t seeing tangible results. I’d play games with campers, worship with all the breath in my lungs and encourage fellow teammates to share their stories fearlessly. I would remain constant, finding courage in the faith that I hold to as true. I decided to let my worry and my need for control be still, and just let God move through and around me. Peace came over me as I relinquished my hold on that uncertainty. I surrendered my need to know how God was moving. I began to realize that sometimes all we have to do is let go and be held by the Father — to be still and know that He is God and He will fulfill His promises and purposes in His time.
The Tip of the Iceberg As I write this, I’ve been home for four days now. I’m just beginning to see the tip of the iceberg of what God did over the span of those 10 days in Estonia. The relationships I formed in the summer of 2016 grew deeper. Saying goodbye to the two girls I was closest too was tearful and almost unbearable. One of them jokingly told me, “While you were sleeping you promised that you’d move here.” The other, the new bride, informed me that she and her husband would love to visit me in Colorado.
The pastor encouraged me to come back and said that I would always have a place in his home. These people have become family. They are dear brothers and sisters in Christ.
Since being back home, I’m connecting with campers over Facebook. It’s wonderful to be able to continue mentoring students even though we’re far apart geographically. The faith-conversations we had at camp are still stirring in the hearts of our Estonian friends. The Spirit is moving. I’m praying that God will continue to call them into relationship with Him. I’m praying for transformed lives. I want so much for these Estonian campers and friends to understand that only Jesus can ll the void.
In my struggle to find my “place,” I’m now confident that seeds were planted in Estonia. Yet I’m also committed to surrendering the outcome and the future to Christ — to not always knowing the answer and to trusting a God who moves in ways we cannot fathom.