True life story by Tim, a 28 year old American youth with a passion for Jesus, adventure, mountaintops, rock ‘n roll, and motorbikes. An architect by profession, Tim decided to build God’s Kingdom on earth rather than just another high rise tower. Brick and mortar are destined to break, but God builds with something far more precious. Love.
The stench was repulsive. Filling my nostrils, I couldn’t escape it. The source was right in front of me. A cardboard box of spoiled food that had degenerated into the gnarliest compost pile I’ve ever seen. Still, I knew what must be done. Grabbing a trash bag and trusting that my nitrile gloves wouldn’t tear in the next few minutes, two of my classmates and I began clearing it out. We started singing praise as we attacked the vile pile. Thanking God for the opportunity we had to serve and do some good old fashioned dirty work! In a matter of minutes it was bagged (twice for stench control) and in the van ready to take to the dump.
It was a beautiful afternoon and a group of 9 of us had been volunteered to drive an hour into the French countryside to help a friend of the base clean out her farmhouse. The house hadn’t been lived in for a few years, so we were expecting to rock up, do some light dusting and disinfecting and be back in time for supper. Turns out that the house had been lived in more recently than that… Someone had broken in and by the looks of the place spent a few months there. Filth was everywhere. Spoiled food, the floor was thick with dead and bloated flies, the furniture was desecrated. Our light cleaning mission suddenly got a whole lot heavier! 2
After a few photos for the insurance company, and a rousing round of prayer, our team got stuck in. I have no doubt that the grace of God was upon us that day. Nothing was repugnant enough to quench the joy that pervaded our spirits! We had cleared the entire house out of furniture in no time at all. Separated everything into groups to be cleaned and a pile that was destined for the refuse bin. We went hard with the disinfectant, cleaning every surface in the beautiful old rustic house. Sweeping. Mopping. Singing praises the whole time! The Lord was with us, and He led us with joyous hearts.
I was ecstatic that I got to be a part of this mission! Even when the full brunt of the task became apparent, I wouldn’t trade that afternoon for a day spent on the beach. God blessed me hands to hold, arms to carry, legs to move, eyes to see, ears to hear, and a mouth to sing! I can’t think of a better way to use those gifts than in service to others, asking nothing in return, the joy of helping is its own reward! The Lord was with us that day. That makes it a great day regardless of the challenges!
Want to know more about how I met with the Perfect father?
I came to know Jesus at the ripe age of 27. My wife decided she didn’t love me anymore and had left a few months earlier, taking the house, furniture, big screen TV, and three dogs with her. Nothing I could say or do could change her mind… everything that I had built my life on was pulled out from under me in the blink of an eye. I moved in with my older brother Kyle with nothing more than some clothes, a pair of guitars, and a motorcycle. Kyle loves Jesus and he invited me to come to church with him, I figured it was the least I could do to humor him. That sense of obligation lasted a few months, but I started to noticed a change within myself. I was looking forward to church, and attending a Bible study on Wednesdays. The more that I lowered my wall against God and let Him in, the more He eased the hurt from my separation. Replacing my heartbreak with the purest of joy. Happiness that I had no right to. Jesus was calling out to me, reaching towards me with loving arms wide open, waiting for me to run into them. I did. In November of 2017 I gave my life to the Lord, and that’s when things got really cool! I surrendered more and more of my life to the Lord, turning away from my old life and choosing to follow Him. Since then God led me to amazing places, incredible people, and best of all closer to Him. Being able to be in Europe, sharing the love and truth about God is beyond my wildest dreams, and yet that is exactly where God has brought me! God is a redeemer, a healer, a loving father, and a dear friend.