08 Jun Summer LINK Clemson: I’m Diving In
I just graduated from the University of South Carolina Aiken with a B.A. in Human Services Sociology. Approaching graduation had me pretty anxious. What on earth do you do after being in school for 16 years??? For eight weeks prior to graduating, I was involved in a Bible study by David Platt called, “Follow Me.” I had a feeling that God was definitely preparing me to be tested in my obedience. Yep, I was right… He sure was.
I have to have the best family in the entire world, starting from the beginning of time. I cherish my family so much. God has blessed me with incredibly Godly, obedient, Spirit-led parents who love each other. My Dad is my earthly example of my Heavenly Father, and I know that so much of my understanding and love for the Lord is because of the witness of Christ he has always been for me. My Mom is a homemaker and has always displayed Galatians 5:22-23 to us. She homeschooled all of us for many years and continues to homeschool my two littlest sisters. She defines a selfless, servant’s heart, a devoted follower of Christ, a Scriptural based and loving wife, and she completes, what I believe is God’s desire for a Godly mother. My Mom is also my dear friend. My siblings! Wow, I just adore them with all my heart. A huge reason I went to USCA for college is so I could commute to school and be at home with them. I hated to miss a moment with them!
|My God-given family! Thank you, Father!|
So, as I was involved in the “Follow Me” Bible study, we focused a lot on how Christ asked His disciples to follow Him. In Matthew 4:19-22, Christ tells His disciples that if they follow Him, He “will make you fishers of men.” What convicted me is how the disciples “IMMEDIATELY,” in verse 20, left everything, their careers, their belongings, their homes, their families and friends, to follow Christ. “Wow… Could I do that, God?”
The verses that challenged me more than any we studied was Luke 14:26-27 – “If anyone comes to Me, and does not hate his own father and mother and wife and children and brothers and sisters, yes, and even his own life, he cannot be My disciple. Whoever does not carry his own cross and come after Me cannot be My disciple.”
Ouch… My love for the Lord should be so incredibly huge, that the love I have for my family and for myself should look like hate in comparison. So, would I be willing to leave my family to follow the Lord? Do I love Him enough? I was asking myself that for months leading up to Summer LINK. God’s timing is perfect, isn’t it? He was definitely preparing my heart. But, I was saying no. I didn’t want to leave home, no matter what. My spirit was struggling because I wasn’t living in surrender to God and His will for me – and I realized, if my surrender is not complete, then I’m not surrendered!
God provided the answer in time, as He really worked on my heart. My brother, Jordan, has done some Summer LINKs before and has been trying to get me to do it for years. He and my friend Jacqueline were talking me through wonderful opportunities after graduation, while I tearfully expressed my stress and anxiety as I selfishly fought for my desires. However, once the words, “You should do Summer LINK Clemson this summer” were said… there was PEACE. God gave me clarity in that very instant. He took me from misery to complete, immense peace. He helped me overcome my fears and desires, and by His strength, I could obey without looking twice (2 Cor. 12:9).
Ever since, God continuously amazes me with confirmation that I am in the center of His will. This place of His will has been one of the most joyfully overflowing and growing times of my life. My heart is full of thanksgiving. God continues to provide and answer prayers, as well just showing me how rich a relationship with Him can be. I’m in awe that our relationship with Him, and how close we can get to Him is simply boundless. I feel close to Him now! But the limits of how much closer, and how much deeper with Him I can dive are endless!!! That excites me!!! I’m so grateful for that, and as singer/songwriter, Steven Curtis Chapman says, “I’m diving in.”
|Display of God’s majesty.|
|L-R: Rebecca, Michaela, also known as my “Boston” ;o) Me, Katherine, Alyssa, Rachel, and Marie.
Love you ladies!
|Sammi and Marie are our leaders!
So thankful for these two beautiful Godly women.
|Clearly, we love being together 😉|
By: Spencer Caroline Burbage