Literally speaking, dregs refers to sediment at the bottom of a liquid such as tea, but figuratively you can use dregs to mean
“a small amount left.”
Becoming quiet enough to see the (positive) dregs
It was 24 December 2019. After much contemplation I decided to stay at home, alone, for Christmas. It was the best choice for where I was at in my life. Days on end I saw no one. I watched a few "based on true" movies but sat mostly with pen and paper in an ongoing conversation with God.
My rough sea became calmer and calmer by the day. It actually took weeks, not days. Once I was REALLY alone for days over Christmas, things really calmed down until the murky waters disappeared - and I finally could see inside my own heart.
I mostly practiced thanks giving as a discipline (Ps100:4) - voicing thanks for all I have in my life. After watching one of the Christmas movies, I randomly asked myself, "If I had a million bucks, what would I buy myself for Christmas?"
That is when I realized... I was in need of absolutely nothing.
(except a hot bath which I love and miss). I had such a deep moment of gratefulness to God for all I have.
Naming the left over dregs
I then proceeded with a bucket list which strangely opened my eyes to what really matters to me, and which I believe highlights the call on my life for this season.
I did not know this was going to happen!
THE HIGH SCHOOL BOY
Before I tell you what took place, I was reminded of a really sad moment the week before. I had to drop a 17 year old boy at his dad's home. They were very poor.
He has never been on a holiday.
NOT 1 HOLIDAY.
I started asking him, that if he only had 3 months left to live, what he would do. He could not answer me.
I proceeded and asked that if he had 1 year left to live, what he would do. I gave him a Million bucks to do anything!
Still, not 1 thing came to him... not even if he had 5 years left.
He is going to go to Technicon in 2021 after Gr12.
So... I asked what subjects he will take - what his focus will be?
NO ANSWER. I had 30minutes with him. The girl (his friend) that was with us, told me that when I dropped him, he told her that NO ONE has ever asked him this...
A broken will. A broken soul. A very nice young man. A man without a dream or literally without the ability to dream. Poverty (seemingly) took this from him and yet to dream is the key to break out of poverty.
He was never been taught to dream. He has a slave mentality. He really takes care and makes sure that the girl he takes to a party is taken care of. (I came to know this later). HIGHLY responsible. Wash the dishes where he visits. This has been drilled into him... to the point where he cannot dream.
Suddenly I realized that the fact that I could analyze my life, & dream with God about the next season in my life - was a gift.
My process I am sharing with you, also reveals, in hindsight that it is a gift and a cultivated ability (given by parents) to dream.
In the book "rich dad poor dad" the writer wrote that the major difference between rich and poor is how they answer this question:
Poor people answer "I do not have money to do it"
Rich people answer "What can I do to make it work"
Back to me:
I then prayerfully proceeded with a bucket list which strangely opened my eyes to what really matters to me, and which I believe highlights the call on my life for this season. I did not know this was going to happen!
You see, during the last 2 years I even contemplated leaving YWAM. I could not understand what God was doing. Whoever said, "do not make major moves or decisions during a storm or a season of loss"... was right.
Once I could see the bottom and name the left over dregs, I surprised myself by seeing what my heart contained & cared about.
My heart in the pictures above: The educational prayer game I just finished in wood. The Intl UofN catalogue. The Hindi coloring book I initiated. The book I wrote to help our YWAM Pioneers and School leaders... the unreached. Standing at my glass door, writing books... etc...
What were the left over dregs still lingering?
It was YWAM.
It was the UofN...
It was the school leaders and registrars.
I realize... this is where my heart truly is. Much came into my heart. I am a systems person. I love strategy and maximizing systems. (which some might see as criticism or judgement)
Unlike the boy that could not dream, I constantly dream about the day Jesus comes back, and what I will give him as a reward for his sufferings.
The day Jesus comes to get me, I want to look down and see that I helped the system that multiplies our school leaders to do an excellent job world wide. We train 1000's of missionaries every year. We go to over 180 nations every year...
I want to know WE ARE PIONEERING WELL! Not just fast but also with excellence. I want to know we are standing on the shoulders of the previous generations and we are reaching even higher heights because of what they pioneered.
Since I have lifted and looked at the "dregs", and since I gained a new perspective on it, I even found myself more ready to staff the Masters the next 3 years. Staffing came unexpected. I simply could not see it. I said yes but was not ready... not until 24 December came.
A veil of some sort is lifting and I feel light and ready for 2020.
I feel ready and it came because I chose to become still. I chose to be without people. I chose not to go on holidays but to listen to the still small voice... who wanted me to HEAR HIM WHISPER.
It was worth the semi-sacrifice this year. And I will see family and the beach in February 2020. I cannot wait.
“When we enjoy God himself,
the desires of our heart are shaped
in accord with our delight in Him.” J. Piper
GO AND MAKE A BUCKET LIST
and appreciate that you can dream with God!
NOTE AFTER I POSTED THE ABOVE:
Quite a few people responded to me with personal emails about this - saying thank you. I copy paste one response from an x-missionary I so admired because they made such an impact where they served in the 10-40 window.
They even spoke the language fluently etc...
What they did not know, is that I myself have lost so much support... My heart really felt their pain...
All I can say is - it is not so easy to call people to long term missions anymore. Unless you are really sure God called you... go and work, marry and make money. Cause it is hard out there...
"Your post was gut wrenching as we experienced this from every angle parents, pastors, family, and then within ourselves...the shame...because we “have so much potential” but year after year never seem to “get there in the worlds term of success”. We lost most all our support and now are working full time and have so much more honor and respect. It’s honestly a breath of fresh air for us...not only shame but being treated so low...by the very people who encouraged this living while you were growing up..."