Jesus has called all of His followers, all of His disciples, to make other disciples and followers of other people. I have felt strongly about this for a long time. It is easy for me to have compassion for people who aren’t following Him. In college, I often felt burdened by a strong sense of pity and love for people who didn’t know the Lord, especially when in large crowds. I want people to know Him and follow Him as I do, knowing that true life does not happen without following His walk.
For me, that journey lead me to Kosova. I wanted to “go and make disciples of all nations.” “All nations” for me meant Albanians in Eastern Europe. As I followed the trail of Christ, I was hoping the lovely Kosovars in my life would pick up on my trail and come alongside me.
For a while after I had my first daughter, I felt limited in my capacity to help others know more about Jesus. Having a baby and being a stay at home mom made a huge shift in my life. Previously, I had gone out, with Randy or by myself, to visit others and spend time in their homes. I spent a lot of time with other people because I wanted them to know more about Christ. After Phoebe came, those visits stopped completely. My life became home-centered as opposed to others-centered.
Without realizing it, I had been caught up in measuring my self-worth by how much of my time I was spending developing relationships with other people. All of a sudden, all of my time was spent in serving one screaming little baby who didn’t really like to eat or sleep. Life became diapers, bottles, dirty laundry and dishes. I felt guilt and shame for spending so much of my thoughts and time on seemingly mundane tasks instead of “kingdom work.”
Upon returning to the States, my guilt and shame did not decrease. We lived in apartment complexes where there were a lot of needy and hurting people, but Randy and I decided it wasn’t safe for Phoebe and I for me alone to reach out to most of the people who were in closest proximity to us even though I was home and around them all day. I established relationships when I could, but nothing significant happened.
Somewhere between living in Webb City and moving to Indiana, I had a realization. Since I was about 8 years old, my passion in life has been to “go and make disciples.” But, in this time of my life, the Lord is calling me to “stay and make disciples,” not of “all nations,” but of the Randy Jones family.
Everyday, I get the chance to lead my daughters Phoebe and Eliza to Christ. I should not make the assumption that, because they are our children, they will grow to desire to walk in faith and follow Jesus’ footsteps. There are so many people around the world that need to know Jesus, but there are two little souls developing under my fingertips. I have a greater chance to lead and disciple them spiritually than with any other person in my life right now.
I know that someday they won’t be living under our roof anymore and the Lord will open doors for me to again “go and make disciples of all nations.” For now, I need not feel guilt in letting my focus remain upon my home. I need to stay and make disciples of my children.