“and He died for all, that those who live should live no longer for themselves, but for Him who died for them and rose again.” 2 Cor. 5:15………………………..
“It takes a special person to do what you do,” a woman wrote me one day. I had been told this countless times before, by countless people, for countless reasons, but before you jump to conclusions, please hear me out. For I have a message for you about this “special” business.
See, people make comments like this to me because instead of living the typical American dream life to live my dreams, make big money, achieve big time success, marry my dream man and have dream kids in my dream house near the ocean which I love, writing popular books to hit the bestseller list and have endless book tours and be interviewed all over the media, donned in fancy clothes with my perfectly toned and tanned perfect weight body all the while flashing my perfect smile with my perfectly white teeth, not that there is anything wrong with any of this when it’s the Lord’s will for our lives, I live on a barebones budget and stay in a hotel room and wear simple clothes and live a totally simple lifestyle as I care for a little crew of disabled and senior dogs while I fulfill my life’s calling by being devoted to the Lord and ministry twenty-four/seven as I do streets ministry and write Gospel tracts, devotionals, and books to help people find and forever follow the Lord Jesus Christ with a heart for all people and especially those in exceeding need like the homeless, hurting, broken, lost, abandoned, disabled, sick, dying, addicted, abused, criminals, hurting, hopeless, depressed, suicidal, poor, hungry, etc.
I am often found running between changing diapers on paralyzed dogs to my computer to write a devotional that reaches people around the world, grabbing a phone call from someone hurting and then rushing off to spend more time with the Lord to see if He wants my writing to get into more prisons, more homeless shelters, maybe a nursing home, oh, another call comes in, back to the dog needing medicine, then running into someone in the hotel parking lot who’s crying and wants to hear about Jesus. By the end of each day, I’m exhausted, dirty, running ragged, wondering how the Lord will provide for this or that, seeking Him about something or other, diving back into His Word which I LOVE to study, back to the dogs, then comes an email from someone across the world saying thank you, now she has the hope of Christ, etc.
I’m not exactly living the American dream, am I? Not especially when God called me to sell my little house near the ocean, give away most everything, and hit the road full-time for Him and ministry. So people think I’m “special”. And, if you happen to be one of those people, please hear me.
I AM NOT SPECIAL. I am nothing more than a simple ordinary plain woman who was broken for decades with an incredibly challenging past and a still very challenging present who has been saved by God through Christ, is being transformed daily by God’s Spirit through God’s Word, and does what I do not because I’m special, not to be special, and for no other reason than this.
I love the Lord more than anything or anyone in the universe, I love people more than imaginable with Christ’s love, I love the special dogs God has placed in my care, and I belong to the Lord Jesus Christ and live and breathe to bring God glory and to help build and encourage His Kingdom of followers.
I am NOTHING more than a vessel of God’s, and any and all goodness and “specialness” anyone sees in me and my lifestyle is NOT my goodness. It is the goodness of the Spirit of God who lives in me.
It doesn’t take a “special” person to give up the American dream and live the way God has called me to live doing what God has called me to do. What it takes is the love, mercy, goodness, and hope of the Lord Jesus Christ who saved a wretch like me who is now used by God who pours His Spirit and Word through me to bring glory to His most magnificent name. The more I follow Jesus, the more I know personally the Lord, the closer I am to Him, the more He changes me to be more like Him, the more I experience His presence, the more I know His love, the more I am filled with His love to love Him in return and to love others in His name for His glory alone.
The “special” one is the Lord Jesus Christ. The special one is God almighty in Christ. May He receive all glory, and may you surrender your life utterly to Him! Be His, my friend. Be His vessel. Live and breathe to bring Him glory!