On any given night, the sounds of the city float up and down the meandering streets and through the open windows. Latin music plays somewhere in the distance. A dog barks somewhere down below. Birds that I cannot yet identify readily add their own sound to the soundtrack of this city.
Last night I realized, for the first time, how visible the stars are even in the city. I felt comforted. I need the stars to remind me that I am apart of a universe created by a God who is far bigger than I am. In the same way, I need the mountains and the ocean. During the day, I can look out toward the mountains lifted high in the distance. At night, I can look up and find the stars scattered far above the things of this earth. I’ve yet to stand by the ocean here, but I hope that changes sometime soon.
I am guilty of forgetting that life is so much bigger than my current preoccupations and state of being. I am preoccupied with the fact that school starts on Monday. I get caught up in the details and have an ugly tendency to forget that it’s not about me. Is that not a driving force of fear: seeing any given task through the lens of our capabilities and desires and not through His?
I am preoccupied with the fact that I am so limited in what I can do in this city because of safety, language barriers, and simply not knowing my way around. It is easy to become passive, to fade into the background because it is the one place of comfort. Love calls me to step out even when it is hard. Love calls me to try. Love calls me to be brave. Love calls me to
live a life that is bigger than what is comfortable or safe.
You see, I serve a Father who gives good gifts to his children. Sometimes those good gifts are wrapped in packages that look like risks, hardship, letting go, or stepping forward.
On nights when the stars shine brighter than the lights of the city, on days when I look to the mountains that stand above it all, I am reminded that the Creator of these calls me to live life deeply. In all that I do, whether it be learning to teach or learning to communicate in another language, I want to move past fear and find that place where it’s about more than me.
I’ve heard it said that if we aren’t afraid than we don’t care enough. There is truth in this. I also believe that the fear should be a reminder that we should press into the richness of the love of the One who is bigger than the fear.