It has been a couple weeks since the last letter, but a lot has been going on in the Mitchell household here in Israel. The Lord has really blessed the work of my hands. Callie and I set an amount that we needed to earn each month in order to cover all our costs and to have a little extra in case of an emergency. After just two months of work, the Lord has blessed me with enough students to hit the mark we had set. This has all come from simple word of mouth from student to student. We have not done any advertising or marketing of the business. Praise the Lord for His faithfulness!
The other really big thing that has happened is that Callie is now pregnant with our first child! We are over the top excited about this and we covet your prayers. This comes a few months earlier than we were expecting, but this is the good kind of surprise. The Lord obviously wants us to start our family here in Israel, and we are very excited to do it. Callie has been dealing with a lot of morning sickness as a result, so please pray for her as well as for the development of our little one. Many of you have been following where the Lord has been taking me for a log time now. It is precious to me that I can share this with you, my extended family, who have been faithfully praying for me/us for many years. Please pray that the Lord would continue to provide for what He wants to do with us here.
I have been struck recently by the circumstances surrounding Jonah's flight from the Lord. What is amazing to me is not that Jonah ran from something he didn't want to do. We all do that from time to time. There is something very human about wanting to run instead of facing the things we need to face. None of us are perfectly brave all the time. This was not the thing that caught my attention. What caught my attention was the fact that Jonah ran even though He heard the very voice of God telling him to do something. How many of us plead and plead for God to speak clearly to us? How many of us want God to speak in an audible voice so that we can be sure we are doing the Lord's will? Jonah HEARD the voice of the Almighty God and yet he ran. There is an enormous responsibility that comes with hearing the Lord's voice. We in the Body have looked at the hearing the Lord's voice in the same way as we would look at reading a fortune cookie. Fortune cookies are always "positive" and we are never disappointed by what is written. If we are willing to let them, fortune cookies can also give us enough direction to make us happy, but not enough that we are accepting true responsibility. When we ask God to speak, we better make sure we know what we are asking. We will never get a "fortune cookie" response. I am not saying that we will, like Jonah, hear something we don't want to do. Maybe we will and maybe we won't.
The point is that when we ask, the amount of responsibility we accept is usually never understood to its depth. Jonah, because he accepted the role as prophet of God, he became responsible for the people of Ninevah and the sailors on that ship. God's Word to him directly affected the people he would meet if he obeyed and the people he would meet if he disobeyed. Asking for the Lord to speak and hearing his voice will directly affect people around us if we obey and if we disobey. The Lord's voice is a fearful thing to hear and the Body has taken this responsibility WAY too lightly. We have the opportunity through Yeshua to have a relationship to the living God. Communing with Him everyday is wonderful and doesn't have to be "direction" oriented, but we should know when it is. This is a wonderful, joyous thing, but it also should be a fearful thing. Blessings to you all.
Devin and Callie (+1)