It seems as though I'm forever yearning for lasting simplicity and contentment. They're slippery, those two... especially to one as stubborn as myself.
I'm spending some time this month reading Philippians. I memorized parts of the book as a child, but it never ceases to surprise me how something so familiar can be so fresh. I was reading chapter 4 yesterday and this hit home: "Not that I am speaking of being in need, for I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content. I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound. In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger, abundance and need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.”
Having been through a season of great abundance, I'm now in that place where I'm having to sacrifice financial security for the surpassing greatness of following Jesus. It's hard. In fact, it's the most difficult thing I've done. Laying down my lucrative career to be obedient to the calling God's placed on my life has been a tough decision to persevere in.
That said, I'm constantly seeking inspiration from people who have- or are- walking a path of non-compromise, hardship, and self-sacrifice as it relates to their faith in Jesus. So when I came across the story of Ian and Larissa, I paid attention. Have you heard of them yet? Last night I watched their 8 minute video and then spent hours reading Larissa's blog. I can't remember the last time I cried so hard. I mean, messy cried. Their story is one of the most beautiful I've ever seen, and such a testimony to the big, kind heart of a God who loves without leaving and without failing.
Really, I encourage you to get somewhere where you can messy cry and watch Ian and Larissa's story. And then join us in praying for them... for strength, for perseverance and for hope in times of sorrow.