I’ve got 25 minutes until the kids come home from school. I’m sitting in my living room with a Christmas candle burning, Steve Harvey on the television, and a pile of clean laundry sitting next to me that I know I eventually need to fold. Baby napping, it’s a chance to take in a quiet moment.

And yet, my heart is restless. I can’t concentrate. I feel this wild pull to sort my thoughts, not the clothes.

Ever since Friday, we have been reeling, feeling, discussing, arguing, and deciding. Sorting.

I’m reading the comments, the posts, the pleas, the exhortations, the rhetoric, the propositions….

And I dig deep into my my heart, soul and mind with all my strength and I am asking like the rest of you…

What are we to do?”

I think we all want to pass this test.

And I read the exhortations from my tribe…people I look up to and respect. And they remind me what it looks like to love like Jesus and welcome and accept and invite everyone to the table.

And I read the exhortations from others in my tribe…others I looks up to and respect. And they remind me that we are to be wise as serpents and innocent as doves. And that loving people doesn’t mean we are foolish.

And I feel familiarity in their words, like when I want to adopt literally EVERY single child that I’ve ever come across who needs a home…and God has to temper my passion and remind me that even good things done outside of His will and calling can sometimes no longer be good things. And that Jesus only did what he saw the Father doing and moved where the Father called him… and nothing more…and He had to pass by a LOT of good things because He was wise.

And I feel familiarity in their words, like when I want to love the least of these, but I let fear and comfort get in the way. Or when I  talk myself out of something that I KNOW God is asking me to do because I know it looks just as crazy at it sounds and I back off and clip my own wings and settle rather than soar. When I miss opportunities to love because I choose practical over beautiful. Because I refuse to do the illogical thing and run head first into God’s call to be brave and unleash that perfect love that will send fear to the corners and change the whole wide hurting world.

And I sit here, staring at my Christmas candle and all I can come up with to answer this question is…

“I don’t know”.

And it kind of feels like I am the only single solitary person in the entire world who doesn’t know.

But that’s where I am. I am wrestling and praying and seeking and sorting. Apparently I am slow to draw conclusions. Because after all that,

I still don’t know.

I know what I’m called to do personally, but I don’t know if that applies to a country.

I know that perfect love casts out all fear, but I know there is a difference between fear and wisdom.

I know that we are called to love the least of these but I don’t always know what real love looks like.

I know that I want to open my arms and just love the whole wide world in one big group hug, but that I am never called to step outside of His Holy Spirit guidance and I am to always listen to His “hows and whens”.

And I know that we have to be wise and discerning in the midst of unprecedented terrorism, but missing Jesus and His call is FAR more terrifying.

And I know that being welcoming might make us vulnerable, but that willing vulnerability is one of the best conduits of grace.

And I know that there are people out there who really do want to hurt us, but Jesus let his enemies hurt him all the way to the Cross so he could die for the very ones who put Him there.

And I know that the darkest day in history was really God’s greatest victory and things aren’t always what they seem.

And I know that above all,

Jesus knows.

So I am going to sit here for a bit in this space. I’m going to surrender my “I don’t knows” to the God of all the answers AND the questions and humbly ask him to show me what He wants of me. And I’m going to pray that I have the ears to hear. And I’m going to beg for wisdom. He promises to give it to those who ask.

For those of you who feel crystal clear on this issue, I know how frustrating an “I don’t know” can sound. Forgive me that I’m not more clear. I know I’m risking making a lot of people on BOTH sides angry. But I’m taking a chance that  maybe I’m not the only one who doesn’t know.

And if so, this post is for you and we’re in this together :)  And I’m praying for us both.




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Contributing Writer at:
Missional Women