Crossing "Oceans"

Spirit lead me where my trust is without borders

It's a cry that is flowing from the voices of believers everywhere as this song, "Oceans" by Hillsong, continues to pierce the hearts of lovesick followers of Christ.

Trust without borders.  Essentially we're saying take me to where my trust has a border (because we all have borders) and prove to me there that you are still trustworthy. Then take me to my next border and prove to me again, You are faithful still. Continue on removing my borders until there is no situation and no place where my trust in You is not deeper than my own fears or doubts.

Trust without borders is exclaiming confidently, "God, I'll go anywhere, I'll do anything, for You."

At sixteen I began making that same bold statement screaming from the core of my smitten heart. I didn't have a clue what I was really saying, I just knew that I was in love with a Savior and I wanted Him to know my devotion. He had died for me and much like Peter (Matthew 26:35) in my naive loyalty I would declare,"Even if I must die, I will follow You".

I first found my "border" or "rooster crowing" moment when God asked me to do something INSANE. Was He asking me to sale everything I owned as He had the rich young ruler? ... No. Was He asking me to leave family and friends to live in a jungle sharing the gospel? ... No. Was He asking me to take a vow of silence and celibacy?... No.

My first border was found when He asked me to turn down several job offers in "full-time ministry", withdrawal my commitment to start seminary, and move to my hometown to teach in the public school.

Often times our borders are found in places where His plan doesn't exactly go the direction we thought it should. In that place when we're shaken to our core  and we find all our hope had been placed in our plan, there we find if our trust has a border.

I cried and cried as I sat on the mission field hearing clearly what God was asking of me, I said, "God, I'll go anywhere, I'll do anything... BUT PLEASE, don't make me to go back there, please don't make me work there, please don't make me do this, I have dreams, I have plans..."

BORDER

God is in the border breaking business and He is good at it. I spent two years in Liberty teaching/coaching before God sent me back on the mission field and eventually to Louisiana to youth pastor. In those two years I worked through more baggage then I realized I had. I watched God confront areas of my heart that I was determined to never open the door on. He redeemed hurts, regret, relationships, and more. I wouldn't even consider trading those years for the things I had planned, what He did and what He gave in that time is beyond

Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander

Our feet could never explore the depths of God, but Holy Spirit has the ability to do things supernaturally that we could never do ourselves naturally. When we're singing take us deeper than my feet could wonder, we're saying, "Reveal Him to me". Holy Spirit speaks to our hearts and guides our feet taking us to places that will reveal the heart of our Father.

Take me deeper than my feet could ever wander

Take us to the places where we will grow in love. Take us where Holy Spirit can reveal  more of your heart and continue to let love for You and others grow deeper and deeper in us. If that place is in the public school, in ministry, in stores, in America, in South America, Africa, or even Antarctica, take us where we can fall more in love with You.

After two years in Liberty, God asked me to go to S. Sudan for a short time with Iris Ministries. In just my few days spent there, my whole live changed. I got to know Jesus in a whole new way. It was almost as if I was meeting Him all over again. In those few days my heart changed. I learned what it meant to "return to the joy of my salvation", I finally understood "return to your first love", there was a new depth in my relationship with Him that I had never experienced. Here I am two years later and to this day I am different because of my time spent in South Sudan. There is hardly a day that goes by that I don't remember my time there and how the Love of my life stole my attention during that time. Though those days were a few of the toughest of my life, once again, He tore town borders, and blessed my life more than I thought possible.

And my faith will be made stronger in the presence of my Savior

When God beckons us to our trust "borders" He has a plan to take us deeper into Him. You see in your comfort zone there is a well balanced knowledge of how you think things work. You fully grasp how life works, what is expected of you, we are comfortable with our relationship with God, who He is, and how we think He works. BUT... When Holy Spirit pulls you out of that comfort zone, what you thought you knew somehow becomes irrelevant. In that moment where uncertainty is the loudest emotion there we find out if we Trust and there we find out whether we trust or not, He's trustworthy. When the border is revealed, your faith will be made stronger because you'll find Jesus there. He's there with open arms, inviting you to know His heart more, releasing more love than our brains know how to process.

And my faith will be made stronger, in the presence of my Savior

I once again hear the voice of my Savior beckoning me to come out on the water. He's inviting me to a place where my feet are not familiar. In February I will be leaving to go to the Democratic Republic of Congo, or DRC. I will be spending two months with Iris Global/Justice Rising. It's guaranteed to be an adventure like never before. I'm confident that through the midst of the storm I will find borders, but I've finally reached the place in life where I am not afraid of borders. Instead I choose to welcome them. Every time I've come to a place where my trust is put in question, He has proven Himself. Every time I've only fallen more in love with the One who ravishes my heart. Though there will be challenges, I know that when I return, I will have once again gone deeper into who He is and my faith will be made stronger, in the presence of my Savior.

God calls all of us out onto the water. He calls all of us out of our comfort zone. Your "border" may not be crossing the ocean onto the foreign mission field, but I guarantee He's asking you to come deeper. Ask Him to take you to your borders and watch as you come to know Him better. Watch as your heart grows fonder. When we're pushed out of our comfort, we are weak, but He is oh so strong.

You can check out www.pursuingnormal.com to read the blog of the missionary I'll be meeting up with or watch the video below as, Rolland Baker (Co-founder of Iris Global) describes some things about DRC.

Be Blessed, J. Tate

[youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PJJ-dFlV42s&w=420&h=315]