I am currently sitting in the Paris airport, waiting for the next leg of my journey to Togo.
It has been a pretty chaotic last 24 hours in the states... I had a frustrating day at the airport on Friday when I was supposed to be flying out of Jacksonville and landing in Togo on Saturday evening...
However, what was supposed to be a smooth departure turned into a 2 hour fight with the ticketing agents about a new mysterious visa law for me to get into Togo. After a 2 hour battle and jumping through all their hoops, I didn't make my flight and had to wait another 24 hours to leave.
I had just gone through all the emotions of spending my last couple nights with family and friends and saying all my goodbyes. I had a few friends with me at the airport to see me off and instead had to walk out of the airport defeated and emotionally drained.
I was confused, frustrated and exhausted.
The long journey of getting to this very moment has not been easy. It's been a long 2 years or so with a lot of doubt if I would actually ever make it to where I believed the Lord had called me to go.
This was a moment of true doubt for me.
I mean, I am finally here! The day has finally come to fly out and all of a sudden... nothing.
This drove me to Mark 9 on my second, last 24 hours in the states.
"And Jesus asked his father, "How long has this been happening to him?" And he said, "From childhood. And it has often cast him into fire and into water, to destroy him. But if you can do anything, have compassion on us and help us." And Jesus said to him, "'If you can'! All things are possible for one who believes." Immediately the father of the child cried out and said, "I believe; help my unbelief!"
- Mark 9:21-24 ESV
This man had every reason to doubt that his son would be healed.
I mean this evil spirit in the boy had been with him for years and showed no signs of ever leaving.
I can only imagine this father hearing about Jesus and thinking, "maybe, just maybe, He could do something for my boy finally".
He ran into Jesus' disciples and figured surely they can help.
But they were unable to cast out this spirit...
Again another wave of doubt must have come over this man. This was almost his last hope.
But then the father finds Jesus himself and pleads for his help. He asks with a little bit of doubt in his question... "if you can".
Jesus immediately calls him out! "If you can! All things are possible for one who believes".
Then this man says one of the most relatable, honest things he could possibly say. “I believe; help my unbelief!"
I’ll be honest. I typically pride myself on being hopelessly optimistic the majority of the time. But it always seems to be that whenever we need the most faith to step into what He has for us, doubt creeps in like never before.
Like this man I found myself saying to God, “I want to believe you! I really do, but I am struggling with some serious doubt and fear.”
The enemy always wants us to doubt what the Lord has called us to but all God wants from us is to hit our knees and ask God to help us with our unbelief.
It’s these moments that we see God do some amazing things in our lives and the lives around us.
We get to a point where we say, “God, it can only be you because I’m not sure I can carry on much longer.”
I arrived at the airport extra early on Saturday afternoon ready for it to be a fight again. I was pretty sure I had everything I needed this time... but I had some doubt for sure.
This time when I arrived to the counter, they didn’t ask for anything... the mysterious new rule for visas was gone and I checked my luggage in less than two minutes... What?!
How in the world is that possible when the day before I spent two hours of intense battle to board my plane...
Honestly, I may not ever know why I didn’t board the plane on the day I was supposed to... but if nothing else, it brought me to a place where I had to ask God to help me with my unbelief and He did just that.
I am now on my plane and about to take off for Togo. I get to join an incredible team on the ground and be a part of some incredible things that God is doing there.
I’ll take a little inconvenience and doubt to get to see God show up in my life and those around me.
This journey may be tough but Jesus did say, “in this life you will face many trials, but take heart, for I have overcome the world.”