Monday, April 8, 2013

Leisure Family: How They Got Here



Ever wonder if God could use you on the mission field?  Feel like you don't have "the right" skills?  We're excited to share Raymond and Nicole Leisures' story today about how they felt God's call to the mission field.  If you are interested in finding out more about serving full-time in Uganda, or anywhere else around the world check out: www.gowgm.org

The Leisure family began our journey in 2007.  God appeared to be calling Nicole and I (Raymond) to serve in Uganda but I needed proof.  The call was just a little too far from “normal” and there was also the feeling of not being worthy of the mission field.  My request of the Lord followed the story of Gideon in that I requested that God provide me a shofar.  A shofar is the trumpet of the bible, made of a ram’s horn.  While the story is too long to detail here, the Lord did provide the shofar and all the money needed to go on this initial trip to Uganda in June 2008.  While in Uganda for 16 days, the Lord began working on Nicole’s, and even more so on my, heart.  He opened our eyes and hearts to the people of Uganda.  We returned home in wonder and even fear.   

Could the Lord really be calling us to the mission field?  Why would he do such a thing?  What business did a teacher and computer geek, jack of all trades master of none, kind of people, have on the mission field?  Missionaries are supposed to “have it all together” and we most certainly did not have it together.  We grew up in a cult and had only been set free in 1998.  We were to “young” to be missionaries.  We could not seem to forget Uganda though.  We spent several months praying to make sure we were not on some sort of traveling “high.”  Still not able to shake this pull, we applied with WGM.  I continued to pray that if this was not of the Lord, that he stop it.  We didn’t have a clue what we were doing, but I knew that if this was not of the Lord, I didn’t want anything to do with it.  

I must admit, to my surprise, WGM accepted us.  They did ask us to do some preparation though.  We had to take some collage courses to round out our understanding of scripture and even to better understand what we were getting into.  None of it was easy, but all of it was fulfilling.  We finished our course work in 2011 and began raising funds.  This was another problem for me.  I detest public speaking!  I reasoned that if God had brought me that far, he was going to get me the rest of the way.  Nicole loved speaking in public, after all, she is a teacher, and she does it all the time.  We told the story of how God had called us and provided the shofar as proof to me that we were to travel this path.  We shared that we were no more worthy than the next Christ follower, we were just willing.  We were willing to follow the Lord, even though we were so unworthy.  Trusting that somehow we were exactly what the Lord needed to fulfill His plan.  In the end, I’m not even sure it was our skill set that the Lord needed; it was our willingness to follow.

Keep reading more from the Leisures at their blog: http://www.thecalloftheshofar.blogspot.com/

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