When you choose to follow Jesus to a foreign land (or anywhere for that matter) there seems to be a constant tension. At times it is a question of “Is it worth it?” or even “Is HE worth it?” Other times it is an intense sorrow of never feeling like we are “home.” It’s a constant feeling that we are completely unqualified for and utterly overwhelmed by the task we’ve been called to. Can I be honest?
Year one in Tanzania was filled with many challenges for our family as we went through so many transitions. However, for me (Jamie) personally, year two is proving to be harder for me. Maybe it’s because I survived year one and I now know all that can go into a year. Thinking of 20 more like that seems a tad bit overwhelming.
The struggle is not so much with what is going on around me, but rather what is going on inside of me.
In my heart.
The Father is calling me deeper. Deeper is hard. Deeper means pain at times.
I was just talking with someone the other day and was reminded that the best things in life are often the hardest, too. It is rare that these things come separately. Marriage. Parenting. Friendships. All of these things are incredible, yet so very hard.
It would be silly to think it wasn’t this way with following Jesus.
My prayer is that in these hard, heart struggles that I would answer my own questions and be reminded of truth. That YES, it is worth it. YES, He is worth it. And when I feel like I am not home I pray that I would be reminded that it’s true, I am not home. Not in America. Not in Tanzania. No where on this entire planet could ever feel completely like home. I long for something more because I was created for eternity with Jesus. And on the days I am overwhelmed with what He’s called me to, may I drop to my knees and realize my “not enoughness.” I need Jesus. Desperately. I am overwhelmed because He’s called my family to a God-sized job. BUT. He will sustain. He will provide. He will enable.
I am not sure where this hit’s you today. No matter where you are, I urge you to follow Him. He is worth it. Let Him take you deeper, but get ready to cling tight to Him and to His truth!
Thanks for walking this journey with us,
Jamie (for the Sharpes)
Joan Wiuff says
Hi, I came across a post I had on facebook from last year about the call you had to share the gospel to “The Unreached” Reading it again decided to check in on how you all are doing.
Want you to know you have one more in prayer for you all. At 67 there have had many tests and I understand your times of “what is the use” when all seems so dark. BUT GOD SO RICH IN HIS MERCY has seen my husband and me through 40 years. Palms was one of my many places of refuge. His Word will anchor your soul! Hebrews 6:19 19 Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast. God bless you and your family
Chandler and Jamie Sharpe says
Hi Mrs. Joan, Thank you so much for your encouragement. It means a lot that you would check back in with us to see how we are doing! Thanks for the reminder to let God’s Word be the anchor for my soul. Blessings!
Libby Williams says
God’s calling is so strong on your lives. It’s amazing my love! You are blessing these families in ways that otherwise they would not experience. God’s hand is on you so strongly! Your lives are changing these people forever. One generation will impact another. Your children even radiate the love of Christ. God’s establishing Himself right there through you and Chandler to these dear people. Praying for your safety, your strength, your health and your protection. I love you dear ones!
Aunt Janet says
Jamie, Honey I am not sure if God called you to Tanzania to reach the people there or if He sent you there to reach those of us in the United States. I will continue to keep you all in my prayers while you do the same for me as I struggle to dig deeper and get closer to Him. I love you all….
Ashley Friedman says
I just recently received an email from ethnos 360, that made me go to the website to research more missionaries. Which lead me to your article on “Following Jesus”, it was so encouraging!! I have been having a pretty hard day and it was just what I needed to read! Thank you for serving our Savior as you (and your family) do!
Chandler and Jamie Sharpe says
Hi Ashley! I am so glad these words were an encouragement to you. God is so faithful to give us what we need, when we need it! Blessings!