My desire, His command

“But the man from whom the demons had gone out was begging Him that he might accompany Him; but He sent him away saying, ‘Return to your house and describe what great things God has done for you’.  So he went away, proclaiming throughout the whole city what great things Jesus had done for him.”
- Luke 8:38-39

Since day one of being home from Peru, I have been homesick to go back.  I left a piece of my heart in a little village at the foot of Peru’s highest mountain, and it’s screaming for me to return.

I came across the above verse during my daily devotions a couple days ago.  It resonated within me as I contemplated the feelings that the afore-demon possessed man must’ve been experiencing after having been healed.  He had seen the power of God work in his very being.  He loved Jesus.  He wanted to follow his Savior.  He wanted to be where He was.  It says that he ‘was begging’ Him.  For what?  To permit him to go wherever He went.  It was as if he was attached to the LORD in some way and needed to be with Him.

But what was Jesus’ answer?

“Return to your house and describe what great things God has done for you.”

No, you cannot come with Me.  I want you to stay here.  Tell others of the wondrous works which you have seen God do in you.

A painful, yet beautiful command.  Not the answer the man wanted, I’m sure, but nonetheless, it was a what Jesus wanted of him.

This is where I had to stop and wrestle with my feelings.  I want to go back to Peru.  I want to go back to the family I left there.  I want to go back to the new family I met there.  I want to go back to that little village under the beautiful sky, next to the beautiful mountain, and breathe in the beautiful air.  I want to go back to that strangely familiar place where I could speak in Spanish all day and be understood and spoken to in the same language that I love. 

It was all about what I wanted.

Yet just as Jesus denied the man’s request in Luke 8, so He has gently denied mine.  I am returning to Peru next July (plans are already in the making), but I wanted/want to go sooner.

Even though the desires of my heart are to please God, I struggle with wanting to do things that I want to do.  They may be very profitable and godly things, but...they’re not what the LORD has for me in this very moment.  Right now, I am here, in Oregon, with my family.  And He wants me to ‘describe what great things God has done for me’.  Here.  Now.

His commands are always greater than my desires.  And I must remember that His commands are so much more, so much better for me than what I want.  Resting in this knowledge is hard at times, but the peace that comes from completely giving over oneself to the workmanship hands of God is indescribable.

Do with me as You please.