When one door opens, another one…shuts?

It seems life is in constant change. One minute you’re living a comfortable, regular life with normal, American things. The next minute you wake up to find out…

Your little girl has this rare, life-threatening skin disease, and your whole world crashes in, and you can’t do anything else but fight for her life. OR you’re a mother of children you have raised to be bold and go after thier dreams, only to realize their dreams are, unfortunately, geographically far away from you. OR if you’re me, realizing you’re supposed to move across the world because you can’t see yourself doing anything else but worshiping in “pockets around the world.” It was literally that quick. It happened in a moment. And there was nothing I could do to stop it.

These last few months have been anything but easy. But I have never felt more sure of my calling. And it’s not because anybody has reassured me of it. It’s a call. And it was my turn to answer it. When you receive a gift from God, you have three options: hide it, use it for the wrong reasons, or the worst, get uncomfortable.

I made up my mind a long time ago I was going to do what nobody else was doing, and worship when nobody else was worshiping. But when life is constantly closing doors, are you still going to choose to worship alone? And after your lifeless faith has failed you and you become discouraged, will you still go into places that are dark and scary hoping that God is still there shining his marvelous light? I guess that is what I am doing.

I have a testimony that will light up nations, shake down strongholds, and bind up the enemy’s lies where he has said “This nation is mine.” It’s not what you think. These places aren’t hopeless. These people aren’t dead. They’re waiting for a King to come and rescue them. They’re waiting for me to tell them about Him.

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I’ve been told I wouldn’t raise the money by May, and that I couldn’t go. I tried anyway. I made it. I missed deadlines and reached new ones. My monthly goal has been above and dropped back down below. I’ve totaled the car I was using these last few weeks home and been out of thousands of dollars between plane tickets, unexpected add-ons, and so many other things I can’t even think of anymore, because if I think too much about it, I don’t focus on what I should be focused on. People have let me down that I thought I could count on, others have stepped in and went above and beyond. It takes people who are willing to plunge through the fiery gates of hell in prayer in order to see you succeed. But if there is anything I’ve learned over this period, it’s that prayer without works is truly dead, but I’m so grateful to be surrounded by such an amazing family that throws away discouragement, doesn’t let me quit, and inspires me to win.

And I’ve learned how to fight. How do you prove if you really want something? What do you do when you literally “sell all your possessions to buy the field,” only to realize the field isn’t ready for you yet? To realize your possessions weren’t enough…to realize it was your heart that really needed to be surrendered. So I fought. And then I felt defeated. But I fought again. Defeated. Gave up a couple times. God came through. He’s faithful when I’m not. He’s bigger than my heart. He wants me to succeed more than I do. Because it’s His dream I’m going after.

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How do I know this is really what I want? Because I can’t stop chasing it. It won’t let me. He won’t let me. So even though it seemed like every time I could see the light beaming through the door, a different door would slam shut, I couldn’t take my gaze off of him. I couldn’t abandon what He had worked so hard in me to build: a surrendered heart.

I still have a long ways to go. I can physically say that I get to now sell it all and move across the world for my Jesus. But He’s still working on my heart. I still want to be able to say that my heart is as surrendered as my life looks. And it’s a work in progress. But I’m growing to love it. The closer I get to a surrendered heart, the closer I get to Him. And that’s exactly where I want to be.

~Lyssa

This is just a preview of what’s to come. If you would like to subscribe to my monthly newsletters, please leave me your email. 

I still have money left to raise to reach my total. If you would like to give to this mission, go to acts.global/support and use the ID code: A44265S

ACTS Diary: Week one

Getting to Colorado was already a huge step for me…actually being here, a whole other story. Seeing so many people like me from all around the country is shocking. I am overwhelmed by how young so many of these full time missionaries are. Most, if not all, of our team leads are in their twenties, moving back here from living on their mission field (what they now call their home) for the past two or three years, just so they can lead us when we travel overseas. I can taste the prayer that was put into all of this; it’s so thick. I know they have been preparing the grounds for us, and I am finally getting nervous about why God really wants me here.

I am living in a house with eighteen girls. It is split into three different levels, so it’s not as crowded as it may seem…but it is pretty hard to find a spot by myself. Everybody wants the same thing here: to see God’s glory in all the earth; and they’ve all given up their lives to see it happen. There are so many different leaders teaching us and preparing us for what’s to come. The Bible teaching itself will be very intense, and we spend four hours a day (minimum) in the prayer room. They purposefully make it so you spend just as much time in prayer and worship as you do in the classroom. They are very family oriented and keep us super busy—probably so we don’t kill each other!

We had prayer room auditions this week. They wanted anybody who could sing or play at all to try out, just to at least see what we’ll be able to do out on the field, which really excited me. That’s been my dream from the beginning just to worship in prayer pockets in places that have never even heard the gospel of Jesus before, and to think this is not only an option now, but the GOAL for the school—that’s amazing. We have also had lots of “activities,” like camping and going up in the mountains and outdoors type stuff. It has been exhausting but lots of fun.

I know this is exactly where I am supposed to be, because this is where God wants to use me now. Even just hearing our leaders pray makes you weep and want more of God. It’s so refreshing. I already feel like I’ve been here for so long!

I still need a little over $1000 to make it to the outreach part. Thank you for continuing to partner with me in prayer for that, as well as other things I will do my best to keep you updated on! I should know what country I’m going to by the end of this week.

Compassion

I was praying for more compassion, and God said this: “Compassion is not sympathy. Compassion is ‘love with a drive.’ Compassion is something that compels you to act.”

Heidi baker always says “love looks like something.” It’s a call to action, no matter where you’re at. It causes us to look deep inside the heart of God, desperate to see Him move. And we are the ones that He will move. He’ll move us to each do different things. Some will preach, some will sing, some will cure sicknesses, some will stay at home to watch their children grow up, and the list goes on. But what these all have in common is they will all see God move. 

If we are not seeing God move where we are, then we are not living. And we cannot expect things to happen if we are not willing to act. I want to be so planted in the heart of God that I only want what He wants for my life. And that leaves me uncomfortable, abandoned, shipwrecked, and hopelessly in love with Jesus, all for the sake of knowing Him, and His glory known throughout the earth. 

“Love looks like something.” What does it look like? What can you be to somebody every day, wherever you go? I will not mistake sympathy for compassion. I will not waste my life on things that I can see. My goal is to see Jesus. And until that day, let me be crazy. Let me be radical. Let it be normal to want him over everything else. Let love look like something. Let compassion fill the eyes of this world, so Jesus can be seen everywhere we go. 

“But suppose we seek to be made right with God through faith in Christ and then we are found guilty because we have abandoned the law. Would that mean Christ has led us into sin? Absolutely not! Rather, I am a sinner if I rebuild the old system of law I already tore down. For when I tried to keep the law, it condemned me. So I died to the law—I stopped trying to meet all its requirements—so that I might live for God. My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. I do not treat the grace of God as meaningless. For if keeping the law could make us right with God, then there was no need for Christ to die.”

‭‭Galatians‬ ‭2:17-21‬ ‭NLT‬‬

d-day.

When my dad died, it released a door to heaven for me. I saw heaven in a whole new light. It began to beckon me, calling me in. Telling me the only way to get there is through Jesus, and the only way to get to Jesus was to throw off EVERYTHING. Did I do that right away? Well, yes. But I would pick it right back up. This happened day after day. And I just wanted to die. I wanted heaven to take me because I thought that was the only way to get as close to Jesus as I wanted. Boy was I wrong. I soon discovered that God wanted me to live for Him, not die for Him. And in the process, we all die. But we’re not focused on that. Yes, Jesus died for us all, the greatest sacrifice man will ever know, the only way to salvation. But He also lived for us. And we can’t forget that. I discovered the closest I can get to Jesus is through my brokenness, and so I continually ask Him to break my heart for Him. I need to be close, and I hold on to the promise that if we pray what he prayed, it will happen. “On earth as it is in heaven.” Heaven can come down. We can meet Jesus as close as He was over 2000 years ago. I love the hope of heaven. And I love the cross. But I also love the life He gives us to live here, just asking us to invite Him into. He is all we need, and it only takes one broken heart to get him here. One broken prayer. For all the broken people out there, stay that way. He loves to fix you, and He’ll come close to do it. No doubt in my mind.

“Father in heaven

Hallowed be Thy name.

Thy kingdom come

Thy will be done

On earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day, our daily bread.

And forgive us our debts

As we forgive our debtors.

Lead us not into temptation

But deliver us from evil.

For Yours is the kingdom,

Power, and glory

Forever. Amen.”