no where else

“Where else have we to go? You alone have words of eternal life.”  John 6:68

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Early last week my father sent a message: my second cousin, her husband, and their three little children were suddenly killed in a horrible car wreck. They were pre-field overseas workers, training to serve in the world’s largest least-reached people group: the Japanese. Now they’re all with Jesus. Last summer as we were traveling on countless car rides and flights from place to place, I remember thinking, What if . . . after all of this struggle and preparation and travail and prayer and effort and expense and emotion . . . the plane goes down? And we never get there? And thinking, That wouldn’t be God’s plan. Foolish, arrogant me. Thinking that I can comprehend the ways of a perfect, sovereign God. I am left now, telling myself over and over through the tears, Surely he knows what he’s doing?

It makes me run for Jesus. There’s no where else to go. With my head spinning with confusion, my heart hurting for the family, I launch my question at him like I’m throwing a heavy and unwieldy burden that drops almost on my own feet. This is a harsh one, Lord! And the Man of Sorrows is there. He meets me in that place. His eyes that once saw God turn his back as he hung to his death. Reminding me we “judge not the Lord by feeble sense, but trust him for his grace” because “behind a frowning providence he hides a smiling face.”*

I stand with my mouth shut as I begin to see the impact of my second cousin’s life and death around the world. They were compelled by the state of 130 million Japanese—because Jesus is. And he will build his church—and is using them, as they wanted, to do it.

 

On Saturday Indonesian authorities foiled a plot on the part of ISIS-affiliated terrorists. They were trying to launch a rocket bomb at the Marina Bay Hotel in Singapore from the nearby island of Batam. We were touring the Botanic Gardens at the base of that hotel one month ago. Among our friends and acquaintances here, someone’s always in Singapore. We have friends on Batam now and Saturday night we had a new family to dinner—headed, after language school, to Batam. It was close this time. The fiery darts of fear are thicker in the air. And I want to scream aloud, “Has the whole world gone crazy?!”

It makes me run to Jesus. There’s no where else to go. I run fast and I run scared. And the King of kings is there. He who is coming to the world’s rescue, leading heaven’s armies on a white horse and wielding a righteous sword. We are not, never have been, and never will be defenseless. He is Faithful and he is True and this world has not spun out of his control.

I stand with my mouth shut and hold in my hands the very great and precious promises. They are all YES in Jesus.

 

Jesus is our only hope. He’s our high tower, our fearless leader, our nearest comforter, our sheltering wing.

Run.

Run. 

And cling.

 

 

*From William Cowper’s God Moves in a Mysterious Way 1773
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11 Responses to no where else

  1. rodtak6651 says:

    We share in your deep sense of loss and grieve alongside you. We also stand amazed at the evidence of divine grace that even in the memorial service words of confidence in a good and wise God were proclaimed by parents and family members. Nothing short of miraculous, Spirit-sustaining faith in a God whose plans for us are for good and not evil, can explain such rock-solid hope.
    Rod and Martha Takata

  2. DougL says:

    Reassuring messages. Beautifully conveyed.

  3. Bill Armstrong says:

    Our thoughts and prayers are with you and the family! Bill and Barb

  4. Janet Schneider says:

    Such solidly good and helpful truth expressed so poignantly in your words, dear Betsy! And yes, may we RUN RUN and cling to Him only! Love, Janet Schneider

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  5. achamberlinmorris@gmail.com says:

    Betsy,

    Whenever I see a post from you, or an email from you and Alex, my day immediately brightens. Your words continue to convict, make me laugh, make me cry, and just remind me how to rightly think of our God. Particularly, I almost Peed my pants with laughter over the roaches. I’m so sorry. So sorry. But thank you for making me laugh until I cried. Also, the post about nowhere else. It was just so good. For my heart, and I was able to forward it to a friend Who had been asking the exact same question. You can just explain the faith struggle like no one else. Now, for my question. Can the advent project you’re working on also be printed in English? Can I get my hands on it? For myself, and for every single person in the world that I know? We love it and want to spread it around if possible!

    Miss you friend, pray for you often. Thankful for you the work you do, the mom you are, and the way you share at all.

    Ashley Sent from my iPhone

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    • betsy says:

      Ashley, I’m so encouraged by this! Thank you for taking the time to write! RE the Advent Project, I’ll get back to you–we had basically decided not to seek publication in English because we wanted it to be a free resource. Also not sure a publisher could take it at this point because it’s out there pretty thoroughly on the web. But there’s a printable PDF here on the blog and you’re very welcome to share it with anyone that you think might like to use it. SO grateful for you guys–Love, Betsy

  6. Lydia says:

    Wow. Yes and Amen. It is tragedies and dangers like these that strip away the less-sturdy things our hearts like to lean on. Christ alone is that sure foundation. Come quickly, Lord Jesus!

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