So, here I am again, at the start of another journey, letting my God carry me through nations and peoples that I may do His will. The last few months I’ve spent neck-deep in the ministry involving Ukraine have been long, but fruitful. It’s hard to believe that it’s coming to an end.
I have weathered through a storm of spiritual warfare greater than I could have ever imagined, all by the strength of God. He has humbled me, broken me, and rebuilt me from the ground up, all with the masterful precision of His gentle hand. I’ve witnessed many thousands of people receive The Lord. I’ve heard stories from the war. I’ve seen broken people. I’ve seen a nation so broken that it has nowhere to go but God. All of this is for His glory. The work in my heart, the work in theirs, the work in my teammates’ hearts, and the work in yours. All for His glory, and it pleases me to say that, even through the tears, pain, and suffering caused by the sin of the world. But ultimately, He holds those tears in His hands. He bore them on the cross, and even though we witness and endure horrible things, unspeakable things, I see His glory, I see His goodness. I see His hand at work, moving through the demons to rescue us from our despair. Do you see that?
This Wednesday I will head for Germany for a month of ministry. I had personally intended to continue ministry in Ukraine as this war rages on until the end of my stay come May 30th, but God has closed that door and opened another for me to go with some of my teammates to Germany to plan a crusade for a team in early July. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to be a part of that ministry, but I will be able to do my own while I’m there. Honestly, I’m looking forward to the rest. I’m ready to sit at God’s feet and spend time processing the last 2 months. While I never went to the physical front lines of the war, I was always on the spiritual front lines, and God has humbled me many times in this by showing me that only by going to Him in everything will I be successful and keep from burning out. It’s not by our strength, but His. Do you catch that?
I didn’t think it would take a war to humble me and set into stone the things I was failing to see, but it did. I praise God for this because I see things differently now, more as He does. I thought Kosovo was intense, life-changing, etc. That trip was big and certainly important in my life, but it wasn’t even the beginning. This is the beginning, which is crazy because it’s only just the beginning. God is raising up a generation of spiritual warriors to go and conquer darkness, and then be more than conquerors. He’s getting His church ready, and I’m excited to be a part of it. I’m blessed to see miracles, the gifts at work. I’m blessed to say God doesn’t just reserve this for the times of war, but rather he reserves it for the willing. Are you willing?
God has big things in store for my brothers and sisters in Christ, you who read this now, as well as those at home in Arizona. In the meanwhile, I urge you to press into The Lord. Seek His presence, seek His unfailing Love. We are His children, His sons and daughters, and this journey Christ has set me on has taught me more than anything else in my life that our adoption into Christ is the most important thing we could ever behold. We aren’t made for this life. Everything we do here, it’s just a passing journey that will quickly end. Heaven is what we are made for. We are His sons and daughters. His sons and daughters. That’s what matters. That’s what I’ve learned. Have you learned that yet?
I ask all these questions because, beloved Church, God has a plan for you, and before He can start that plan, He has to grow you and stretch you. Our hearts must be teachable. We must let go of our pride. We must walk in the love and humility which comes from the cross. He has poured His love out for us, and His hand is outstretched towards you. He’s waiting for you to grab ahold, and live for something more. To let your life be the proof of His love. Are you ready? Don’t just say yes. Live the yes.
– Declan Thiele