There are moments in life when I wish I could go back.
Yes, I often ache to relive memories…but there is one in particular. And I want to go back so I can savor it a little more.
I wish I had known, at the time, the turning point in our lives that July 30, 2005, would mark. It was the day our Cathay Pacific flight touched down in Jakarta, and, for the first of many times, our weary feet met the soil of Indonesia.
Our feet were always weary at the end of that trip…30+ hours of cramped airplane space and crossing oceans will do that to just about anyone! 😉
We knew we were setting out on an adventure. Following a calling. That our lives were changing dramatically. All of that…plus more.
But I don’t think we understood just how much the two years we’d committed to, along with the extra three we signed up for later, would change us.
I’d like to go back now…to look at myself then versus now.
And maybe to also tell that 27-year-old girl it was all going to be okay…more than okay, because her Father had great plans in spite of the inadequacy she felt.
I think we all dream of something. Many things.
Marriage, family, career, crazy adventures.
My small-town, Iowa-girl heart always dreamed…Forever and every single second, it seemed, I was hoping for more, whatever that more might be.
I had no idea it was Indonesia.
Even after marriage, there were things brewing in our hearts, but we were both content enough…we had jobs. Those jobs paid the bills…mostly. We were members of a thriving church. However, there was a restlessness in our hearts for the depth and adventure that could be.
There was a desire for God to do something more.
And we had no idea – none – the doors He would fling open from that desire, that prayer.
We didn’t know how much our lives would change forever…sadly, we didn’t even know where Indonesia was on a map!
My feet? Well, they would never have wandered to Indonesia on their own.
If I had planned my own life, I’m sure there would have been plenty of traveling. Seeing the beauty and diversity of the world, dancing near the people that make it so beautiful. Exploring the beaten path of well-traveled and tromped.
But, instead, He told us that we needed to say yes to the deeper. He asked us to dance with the people, not just near them. (<====Tweet this.)
And so we said yes…and we didn’t just get five years in Indonesia from that yes.
We were the recipients of a gift so wonderful, I can’t even put it into words.
It was the kind of gift that shakes the dust off the walk through the kampung; the kind that breathes hope through the smile of a child with so little; the kind that brings laughter over out-of-the-blue, skin-soaking rain; the kind that brings memories impressed for a lifetime.
I have often wondered what exactly He was doing with this girl…one who, even to this day, still feels extremely unqualified for all He’s placed in her heart.
And I’ve found the answer in those words…He took me deeper, and is still taking me deeper, than my feet could have ever wandered on their own. (<====Tweet this.)
And we did go back. Not to July 30, 2005, but we did go back on March 16, 2014, and my sweaty, flip-flop clad feet once again met my beloved Indonesia.
The morning I pound out these words, we’ve been home just eighteen days. Eighteen mornings that I’ve awakened, found my coffee, and taken a breath of thanks and sweet sadness. Eighteen days that have provided time for reflection, tears, smiles, memories…and all of those mingle with the strange paradox of joy and sadness.
The revisiting opened my heart again to what He can do when we just let Him…when we just say yes.
To tell you the truth, there is a piece of me whispering for Him to please take me deeper again.
Whatever that may look like and wherever that may be.
And I’m ready.
What is your deeper, my friend?
Are you afraid to speak it aloud?
Let’s boldly ask Him to take us deeper today.
Shared by: Mel Schroeder
Photo Credit: Emrys Roberts