God is continuing to reveal the power of His unfailing love throughout this week of debrief. We are so thankful for time as a team. Here's a word from Zac Rigsby about the endless love he felt God lavish on him this summer.
The theme for blogs this summer has been stories. There have been wonderful stories of redemption, brotherhood, and adoption all of which paint a brilliant picture of God and what he has been doing in us interns. My brothers and sisters here have been moved and touched, been broken and healed, bent and straightened all to the glory of God. Throughout all of this, one story that without fail is written. One story, no matter the vessel, and no matter the words has been communicated; that is the story of Gods love. Yes, Gods love. God’s love is not a mushy emotional feeling that you experience and then it goes away. God’s love is not a gentle emotion or a warm feeling. His love is a fierce, jealous love. His love is powerful, so powerful that it is dangerous.
Every single one of the interns this summer has been a witness to the mighty powerful love of God. I am here not to tell you my story, or some cool story about what happened to me on this incredible Journey that God has me on. No, I am here to tell you a story of God’s love. God has poured out love on me this summer and I emerge the other side changed and in no way the same person that I entered the summer as.
This child of God walked into this summer with the purpose of making a difference in the world, with the purpose of fulfilling some deep desire to try to change something and leave an impact. I had little clue coming in that it was not the world that would be drastically changed but it was me and my heart that would be irreversibly altered. I quickly found out that I had not come into journey with as pure of intentions as I had initially thought. No, I had come with a more selfish motive. My selfish motives not only corrupted my outlook on Journey but it had corrupted all I did to the very core. It is very hard to be Jesus to someone and very hard to stand reflecting the Creator of the world when you have nothing but your own agenda in mind. God, who knows me better than I know myself, saw this and decided to start working there. He used every single thing that we did to draw me closer to him and away from myself.
At the very beginning of the trip I was content to allow him to have small pieces of me (as if I can tell God what he can and can not have) but slowly he began to ask for more and more. This soon became alarming, I mean it is one thing to let go of my want for a comfortable bed but it is another to release my “claim” on my own life. However, our God chose not to win me over with awe inspiring, impressive signs, no he called this child back with love. He has power beyond measure, but he did not use that power to break the bars to my heart. No, he used the power of his love to call me to him. He did use the stars but that was to show how he loved even me amidst all creation, he used the rain to show the cleansing power of his love, and he used a class 8 child named Lu to show me how he loves all of us even the least of these. But at the end of the day his love was lavished and his loved opened the door to my heart to him. It was during one community visit that God looked at me; gently, and lovingly said, “Zac you are not your own, you are mine.” That struck a chord, a deep, intimate chord. He was redefining me. He said, “I love you but Zac you must love me too.” I could feel my heart breaking, but it wasn’t breaking out of a loss for my selfishness, or my “claim” on my own life. No, it was breaking because of the life that was flowing into it. The selfish, lost child had returned home and found not legalism, not judgment but life because all God wanted was to love the child and the child to love him. I experienced an amazing thing returning home, not home to America, home to my Creator and the place He wanted me to be, right smack in the middle of his love.
So, here we interns sit waiting to voyage out and share the amazing things that God has done. But what you will find in every single one of us here is that yes we saw and did amazing things. We got to sit twenty feet from a family of rhinos, and we got to dig a trench with brothers half way across the world. Yes, we went out and taught thousands of children but that is not our story. The story that we have to tell and the story that we are called to tell is God’s story. God brought us into Journey with the ultimate purpose of leaving it. We will indeed leave it but it will not be our stories that we take but the story of God’s love, his faithfulness, his might, and his grace. God’s story is the one that will be told not because we are Christians and not because we want to be spiritual but because that story is the one that matters. So I sit here thanking God for the beautiful stories of his love that he has written on all of our hearts and I cant wait until you hear them from all of your friends and family that are on this trip with me.
“For if we are out of our mind it is for Christ; if we have a sound mind, it is for you. For Christ’s love compels us since we have reached this conclusion: if one died for all then all died. And he died for all so that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for the one who died for them and was raised.” - 2 Cor 5:13-15