John 10:10a "The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; (NASB)
Utter discouragement. Profound despair. Spiritual attacks. Seemingly endless gloom. "Deep dark depression; excessive misery". (in the words of the Hee-Haw crew)
Not exactly a pretty picture. Certainly not the picture of a "spiritual" "holy" "chosen" "missionary". That makes it even that much more discouraging.
Missionaries are people, too. We don't get a special dispensation of holiness or strength; well, I least I didn't. Some seem to have, at times. Living overseas only exacerbates and amplifies any attacks of depression and discouragement.
Doubt creeps in. Satan attacks your children and they say just the right things to make you question your own call. Satan attacks your spouse and she ends up feeling useless or discouraged or both. Satan attacks you and you feel like giving up.
I remember my first year on the field in a very difficult situation. I was shaving one morning and my oldest child came in and saw my face covered in shaving cream. Innocently, the statement was made, "Daddy, you look like a clown." I have never had such an innocent statement cut me so deeply. What was going on? I certainly didn't know at the time.
Satan can attack the most sacred of partnerships; your marriage. Not in the so obvious ways of immorality (although, for some, that has certainly been a problem), but in subtle ways, like building walls, or discontentment, or silly little arguments. Sure, this happens in the US, too, but overseas, EVERYTHING is amplified. Everything.
Satan will attack your sense of self; your qualifications, your talents, your abilities, your desires, your habits, your hobbies, your thoughts. Everything. Sure, this happens in the US, too, but overseas, EVERYTHING is amplified.
John 10:10b I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly. (NASB)
Praise be to God who gives His Son and His Spirit to give life, comfort, and direction.
"I will never leave you nor forsake you" - The special promise that I have from God that no matter what, it will be 'OK'.
Pray for us.