love God, love people, push back darkness

My husband and I have attended the same church for over 4 years now. With the exception of the church I grew up in, it's the longest I have ever attended one church. Usually something happens and I begin to see flaws in a church. The people in charge essentially show that they are human, and I run away scared and hurt and having decided that I will go it alone without the church. Going it alone never works out well. It isn't what we as Christians are called to.

In December, my husband and I changed campuses. Same church, as far as the preaching is concerned, but a new campus. More than once we've commented to each other that we believe we began attending our church four years ago so that we could now attend the campus we do. It might not make sense, but things of the spirit often don't.

Our church, as a whole, has the mission statement of: Love God. Love People. Push Back Darkness. For most of my time as an attendee, it has been just a mission statement to me. I haven't felt the weight of the statement. Until this past week.

So much has been happening, and a lot of it I am unable to share at this moment (note: I am not pregnant). I know we all dislike when people are coy and hide things or make vague statements. And I wish I could share everything that is happening - every last detail. But I simply can not.
What I can share is this... God is continuing to ruin my life. In a way that I never would have expected. In a way that I never really wanted. In a way that has me reeling and holding on for dear life. It's terrifying, but He's never been more real to me.

I am seeing what it means to really love God, love people, and push back darkness. I am learning why it starts with loving God, and I am realizing that sometimes, like now, pushing back darkness entails pushing back the darkness that tries to stop us from living out God's purpose in our lives.

Earlier this week, I stumbled across a few Francis Chan quotes. I've read his book Crazy Love, but haven't thought much of him since. Then I saw a video of him talking about giving away money and supporting kids and doing all these things others think are crazy. And it reminded me of how we're living our lives in a way a lot of people think is crazy.

We're trying to foster right now. That's something everyone in the church is called to do in some form or fashion. It doesn't mean everyone needs to take in a child but everyone should be helping in some form. For every 1 orphan, there are 7 Christians. That's ridiculous and heartwrenching. There is no reason there are any orphans. There are enough of us to solve the orphan crisis.

And yet, people think we're crazy. Which we probably are if you look at how much change we've had since December. But we're simply going where God is calling us even though it makes little to no sense on paper.

I think I know we're doing what we're supposed to because it doesn't make any sense. Nothing has made sense in nearly two months. And I don't see things making sense anytime soon. And yet, God has been there every single step of the way. He has provided in ways we never expected or saw coming. He's granted us peace in the moments of worry. And He has spoken to me more than ever before.
Comfort used to be all that mattered to me. I wanted comfort in the amount of money in my checking account. Comfort in knowing what the next day would bring. Comfort in knowing that we were taking care of ourselves.

But now... now I find myself in a place where if God doesn't come through then I'm in trouble. I find myself fighting for what God tells me to fight for. I find myself stepping out in faith in ways I never have before. And while it's scary, I know God is there breaking me of my comforts. 

My prayers right now are for this to continue. I have even more time left to be off work due to not being cleared to return to work. And while I am frustrated and ready to return to work, I'm resting in God and His strength during this time. He's so much bigger than I am. I am waiting to see what He will do next and reveal next.

And I'm praying for foster care and the orphan crisis. I am praying against injustice. I am praying for God to move and for Him to show me where and how to fight. I am praying against the darkness that threatens to creep in and keep me from fighting the causes God has placed on my heart.


  1. May the Lord bless you indeed. Leslie, you have a heart of gold and I am so happy and blessed to listen to your cries. Keeping you, your husband and your circumstances in my prayers this week. May God continue to show you his path. I love the FC quote about being uncomfortable. I need to remind myself of that daily.

  2. Beautiful post, Leslie! I love the first Francis Chan quote. I used to think it was good to blend in and be relateable, and I still think it's great for some of us to do that so that non-believers can see that we're still human. But lately, I've been feeling called to NOT blend in, to stand out! To live radically, and to be an example of what it looks like the surrender your whole entire life to Christ, no matter what.

    I will absolutely be praying for you, and for the orphans! Thank you for bringing such a huge topic in our world into the prayer chain!! Excited to see what our prayers do :)

  3. I love Francis Chan. Our church watched a telecast that he did and it was powerful. Loved hearing him speak. I need to read that book Crazy Love.

    You have such a heart for God & ministry, I love it. Praying for you & your husband!

  4. Chan is the man!! Thanks so much for sharing!! I'm so excited that you're adopting as well!!! :)




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