All in For God
Jessica Powell – Church Management Solutions Team, Fellowship Pacific
Two and a half years ago I was living in the Toronto area with my husband, Gary, and our three kids. We were at a church that had been our community and family for almost 20 years and I honestly thought we would stay there forever. God, however, had a very different plan in mind.
“I think God wants me to quit my job and go to a seminary called Regent College in Vancouver.”
I wish I could tell you that my response to hearing my husband speak these words was a positive, faith-filled one. For a long time I had dreamed of the day when I would have the chance to take some big step of faith for God. I thought it would be thrilling and fun. But in reality, it felt the complete opposite.
My first reaction was to grab tightly to everything I was terrified of losing and make it crystal clear that I wasn’t going anywhere, thank you very much. I stayed that way for a long time, an embarrassingly long time. But finally I did what I had known all along that I needed to do. I ran to my Father. And as I sat there, tears flowing uncontrollably, as I laid out in great detail why this was too much to ask of me, He whispered to my heart: “For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it” (Mark 8:35).
In that moment I was faced with a question: Was I really willing to lose the life God had planned for us in order to save the life I already had? As much as I loved my life, I knew I couldn’t say no to God, so I finally made the decision to say yes. I was ready to take the leap. I was “all in”.
The months that followed were a whirlwind of activity, emotion, stress and sometimes even a little excitement. We sold our house, packed up our family and set out across the country. We moved into a rental we had previously seen only in pictures on Craigslist and anxiously watched as the amount in our savings account shrunk each month. Gary struggled to adjust to student life after being in full-time ministry for more than a decade and all of us found it really hard to settle in and make new friends.
None of it was easy. Many times I found myself overwhelmed with fear, grief, and desperate homesickness. But I also got to watch God show up for our family. He has taken care of us, provided for us, and shown us His goodness in ways I could never have imagined and I am so glad I made the decision to say yes. Now, two years later, Gary is an Associate Pastor at Maple Ridge Baptist Church and our family is well settled into our new home here in beautiful British Columbia. It’s been quite a journey and yes, it has cost us a lot, but it has been more than worth it to be all in with God.