Words of Worth

Learning to Lean

August 1, 2014

Blog #4  from the series, “Light” from the Black Forest

Today’s guest blogger is Tammy Allen, Middle School Educator in Pennsbury School District in PA

surprise partyGod gave me a surprise party this summer.  I was invited to direct Cairn University’s Germany campus for five weeks this summer. Basically, this meant helping the professors and international students during the five weeks of classes that are held in a little village just north of Basel, Switzerland – Kandern, Germany.

After a little deliberation with my family and some ‘thank You’ prayers, the decision was made.

I’ve been reading through the NT and came upon 2 Corinthians 3:5 – “Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything coming from ourselves, but our adequacy is from God.”  I knew there would be a huge learning curve; I would be responsible for so much in a foreign country, a foreign language, foreign driving, foreign currency- you get the idea. During the first week my days started with prayers for God’s help to perform my responsibilities well. God was exceedingly gracious to give me Lori Strietzel my assistant-director on the Germany end, to show me the ropes of all things Deutsch. Her sweet spirit and servant’s heart made my job easier and lots of fun. However, the second week Lori and her husband were away at their mission’s conference; my security blanket was gone! In less than two weeks I managed to break the lock on our house, accidentally bought decaf coffee for the students’ rainiest and most difficult week, and bought sugar that was half pectin (it’s supposed to be for making jelly) for their coffee. Thankfully, the students were forgiving of my foibles!

I experienced two big lessons during my time in Kandern. One, that even though I was incredibly blessed by seeing God’s glorious creation in places like the turquoise lakes and snowcapped mountains of Switzerland, the real richness of my trip was getting to know and interact with the students and other people I was privileged to meet. Each had an amazing story of God’s redemption and a testimony of courage serving Him in some difficult and dangerous places. But my personal lesson was a growing dependence on my Savior. I needed God to help navigate the various daily responsibilities. I found myself hourly praying for guidance and wisdom in unforeseen problems as well as having the 2 Cgrace to serve others well. Jesus and I had such sweet communion! At home in my normal routines I think I’m leaning on God. I pray and mean it but as I reflected and compared my behavior, I was convicted of my arrogant attitude that in many areas I tell The Lord, “I’m good; I’ve got this.”

Oswald Chambers wrote, “A great many people do not pray because they do not feel any sense of need. The sign that the Holy Spirit is in us is that we realize that we are empty, not that we are full. We have a sense of absolute need. We come across people who try us, circumstances that are difficult, conditions that are perplexing, and all these things awaken a dumb sense of need, which is a sign that the Holy Spirit is there. If we are ever free from the sense of need, it is not because the Holy Spirit has satisfied us, but because we have been satisfied with as much as we have. “A man’s reach should exceed his grasp.” A sense of need is one of the greatest benedictions because it keeps our life rightly related to Jesus Christ.”

I don’t want to be “satisfied with as much as I have.”  I want the double portion that Elijah talked about. Sevda, our student from Azerbaijan, taught me a song that has been my theme for the summer. I included the link she sent me. I hope you will also be blessed by listening and worshiping our Savior who lifts up the humble.



%d bloggers like this: