Sunday, June 26, 2011

The American Dream

Today as I cleaned up my kitchen and listened to an intercession set on the Prayer Room Live, I heard the prayer leader pray against the American Dream. It immediately drew my thoughts to Luke Wood's song in which he sings the words, 'Wake me up from the American Dream, I want to be with You where You are!'
Yes Lord, wake me up from the American Dream today.
I sang these words over my own heart because I needed the reminder to desire the things of the Kingdom above the physical things necessary for living.
Since we have moved it has been hard not to continually be worried over how we would pay for all kinds of 'things' since we had stepped out in faith to move here and do ministry at Morning Star. Our savings has begun to dwindle and in the last few months we have lost two supporters. Some may say that is a good recipe for worry, but not with the Lord on our side. The Lord has continually confirmed our decision to move and has even now been blessing us with new and amazing connections that confirm the move for us. Yet a lot of days I spend worrying. It is a wrong way to focus my days.
I know in my 'knower' (that place in the pit of your stomach that is calm when you are sure of yourself and the One who  leads you) that we are suppose to be here and that the Lord has plans for us here. I also know after years of living by faith how to trust the Lord better to provide for us. He has done it so well over the past four years, especially our second year at IHOP.

A snapshot from that year:
   I had a new baby and had quit my job to be home with her, Ken was in school and could only work part       time doing nights cleaning theaters. We tried to raise support, but no one really understood our vision and the few who did send us financial support were not enough to fill the gaps in our budgets. It was just supernatural that year. Our monthly expenses were probably around $2000 per month and at the end of the year our income tax return was less than $6000 total!!! In all logical-ness there is no way we should have survived, but we did and we lived comfortable. Not luxurious, but comfortable, we always had enough somehow. Again I say, it was Supernatural.

So I feel as though we may be coming back into one of those season. We are missionaries, we are living our lives for the Lord's service and working full time in ministry. He has called us, we are sure, and although I stress sometimes to convince others of this calling, it really isn't my job to convince others.
I need to just relax and be calm in what the Lord has asked us to do and that is to trust Him with our all and do ministry at Morning Star serving in their new prayer room!
The lake at Morning Star which we walk around almost every night.
Also in the picture are a few of our duck friends
whom we love to feed bread too, they have such funny little personalities.
Our lives will not look like the American dream I have a feeling, and a lot of people may misunderstand what we are trying to do in this season. I think I hear the Lord saying that that is okay. I don't have to worry about what people may think of us.
We aren't being irresponsible (I'm declaring that to myself today), we have waited, prayed and listened for the Lord's leadership and now we are walking in it. Some days our reality terrifies me though, because it represents so many unknowns and there is no map for me to follow (I like straight roads), but the Lord is way more creative than I am. Probably if He even tried to show me the whole picture it would make me feel queasy just to look at it.
So this post is about a personal declaration that I will not fall for the trap of the American Dream. To have more money is not the answer to happiness and wholeness. Happiness it is to be within the will of the Father and for now that equals Morning Star for the Brooks family. From the beginning of this move I've used the line, if it's His will, it's His bill. Although I know we are required to do our part and ask the Church (which are the people within the Body of Christ), I know it is His job to move on people's hearts to respond to our ask. He is as faithful and trustworthy as all the scriptures say He is and I am going to try to live my life to please Him. That also means that I can't keep worrying about what other people think. He hasn't called us all to the same things and being misunderstood is not the worse thing that can happen.
Today is a new day and I surrender my life and my will to You again Lord. Thank you for being so long-suffering with me. Amen.


lifeinthevillage said...

So I was sitting here reading and thought back also to that first year here. I cried for a moment at the amazing testimony you are to the Lord. He has done so much in your heart in the last three years, it is unbelievable to me. He is good and He is faithful. And your heart is such a testimony to what He does in our hearts. I am honored to know a woman like you. Thank you friend-

Jody Aldridge said...

I read this remembering the time since we moved you and Ken (no babies yet) to IHOP. I Didn't totally believe it was the Lord's will at that time because of the financial situation you would be in. Over the past 4 years I have witnessed His continued provision and the confirmation of His plans for both of you. Your testimony of God's faithfulness has indeed challenged me and helped me to say yes to His plan for me to quit my job and be in full-time ministry for the past year. My faith in Him has grown because of His faithfullness to you. Because He never changes and does not fail or falter, we can continue to trust Him.
Yes, sometimes it's still far too easy to fret over finances at times. I know that when I'm fretting over my bank balance, though, it's because my eyes are off Him and too much on earthly things.
Let's encourage one another to look up, look up, look up - He's all we need! Love you, Katie-girl!

Jogirl said...

Katrina, I came across your blog just this morning and the title caught my eye. You & Ken are such an encouragement to me - a loving reminder to fully trust God and, like you said with the American dream, keep the RIGHT perspective! :) Love you girly. I'm so glad I got to see you last year when I visited!!!