These past few weeks I’ve found myself up against a new mental and emotional challenge: wrestling with the reality of my own mortality. I’ve always known that I am mortal, but I’ve never put much thought towards what would happen if I were to die in the near future.
Honestly, the thought of my own death is not overly frightening, because, when I die, I get to enter the realm of no suffering with Jesus forever! And while I definitely deeply value my life, and have no desire to die now, if I did, I would be ok. However, I worry about what would happen to those I love if something were to happen to me. At first glance that seems selfless, but the truth is that it is an incredibly selfish thought. If I die, I don’t have to deal with the consequences of my death here on earth, but my loved ones do.
I know these are things no one wants to think about, but lately they’ve been running circles in my mind. Here’s the thing: I know Nepal is dangerous. But when people remind me of the dangers, I want to remind them that nowhere is risk-free, and that humans are terrible evaluators of potential risk. For instance, driving is continually proven to be risky, and yet many of us continue to get behind the wheel on a daily basis.
I do, however, understand why people have been increasingly concerned for my safety in Nepal. In the wake of the recent earthquakes, the dangers in Nepal have become much more visible, both to me, and to those I love. The risks simply aren’t as abstract as they used to be, and I find myself wondering what would happen if something were to happen to me in Nepal and I didn’t return to the States.
But then I realize that that is the voice of Satan tempting me to be afraid. Satan knows just as well as I do that Nepal is exactly where I’m supposed to be this summer, and he’s doing everything he can to keep me away. Fears about my own death are just his latest ploy, but guess what Satan, it’s not going to work!
So for those of you who are worried about my security in Nepal, please don’t be. While I can’t guarantee my safety, I do promise to not be reckless, and I deeply trust both Tiny Hands (the organization planning my trip) and Jesus. I also don’t know the last time I’ve felt so at peace with any decision I’ve made. In the words of my friend Marybeth, “don’t let anyone put a question mark where God has put a period.” I can say with complete confidence that I belong in Nepal this summer!
I know it’s a lot to ask you to release me to go. I truly appreciate your concern for me, and don’t know how to express all the gratitude I feel for your support, but I do have one request: when you feel anxious about my upcoming trip, ask God to help you trust Him. Ultimately I know that I will continue to be safe and secure (in soul if not also in body) in the presence of God!