Thursday, January 21, 2016

An Open Letter to all #travelers with #wanderlust

Let me start by saying that I would identify myself as one of you. I too am a #traveler with #wanderlust. This past week I visited my sixth new country, which happened to be Mexico (and can I add that their tacos really ARE as good as everyone says?!), and today I just booked tickets to travel around the world from March through June, adding six more stamps to my passport! I love everything to do with travel, adventure, the adrenaline of exploring new places, and the mystery of the unknown. I live in Denver, Colorado, and if a few weeks pass that I don't have a chance to sneak away into the mountains for a hike, beautiful drive, exploring, or SOMETHING, I feel like I'm going to go crazy. I study maps for the fun of it, and google random cities just to see their pictures.

I know you, traveler, understand the feeling of wanderlust. There's nothing like the urge to just go - to anywhere - just to see, taste, touch, feeling, and experience everything this world has to offer. And I will agree wholeheartedly, there truly is nothing like the feeling of standing on top of a silhouetted mountain, or exploring a vividly green jungle, or watching the sun set in its vast array of color over the ocean waves. There really is something that touches our soul about nature; and not only nature, but cities. And places. And people.

But the more I travel, the more I see, the more places I go, the more I realize that there is actually something that tugs at my heart even deeper than this feeling we describe as wanderlust, and the joy, fulfillment, and beauty we experience upon reaching that desired place. I'm beginning to discover this passion deep inside of me that far surpasses any #wanderlust. 

I had a revelation this morning that if I keep trying to dream up my own life, I'm actually limiting myself. Because there is Someone who knows the world, and knows my heart, and is actually dreaming even bigger than I could have EVER imagined.

And that someone... He is someone special. That someone is KING JESUS!! How sweet that name is, how kind his heart! He reaches down from heaven - God and man in one - and comes to us, picks us up, covered in mud, out from the darkness we shamefully hid in; he brings us into the light, infuses us with never-ending life, and claims us as HIS own. He brings us into his house, treats us as his own children, and adopts us into his family forever! Because he's the King, we become royalty - surely not because we deserve it, but simply because he choose to lavish his loving kindness upon us! And as we live with him we begin to look more and more like our new family and less and less like the dirty beggar we used to be. The King even goes so far as to put his seal of authority and power in us (the former beggars!), and gives us the assignment of ambassadors - to represent his goodness to those still dying on the streets and release his goodness into the world. All he asks is that we walk around as "mini-Kings", looking like him, to show everyone who the Father is, and invite them to join this family - which, of course, is hardly a sacrifice! I surely don't want to go back to dying on the street. And so it is with this joyful, rescued, freed, redeemed life, I get to spend eternity praising this King and proclaiming his love and goodness to the hurting, broken, dying world.

And this, my fellow travelers, goes far deeper than #wanderlust ever could. There are only so many places you can go in the world... but the beauty of Jesus is never ending. Ironically, when we say yes to Jesus, the King, and lay down our own desires for our life, eager to live with him and look like him so people can know his goodness - we actually end up doing even greater things than we could have dreamed on our own!! Because it's really not even about us. It's about Him.

We used to be beggars dying in the street, remember? But no longer...

"You see, we don't go around preaching about ourselves. We preach that Jesus Christ is Lord, and we ourselves are your servants for Jesus' sake. For God, who said, 'Let there be light in the darkness,' has made this light shine in our hearts so we could know the glory of God that is seen in the face of Jesus Christ. We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves." 2 Corinthians 4:5-7

"So we are Christ's ambassadors; God is making his appeal through us. We speak for Christ when we plead, 'Come back to God!'" 2 Corinthians 5:20

So come. Join me in this great adventure of magnifying King Jesus above all else. Follow him, listen to him, trust him. Say yes when he asks you to give everything. He gave everything for you.

My #wanderlust is for the King of all Kings, Jesus - and I will spend my life worshiping him and inviting every heart on earth to be a part of this family. This is what your soul was truly created for, dear traveler - don't let the world steal your true purpose. As you embark on your many adventures, may your #wanderlust be not only for places and people, but also for the King.