The Beginning of A Beautifully-Ordained Adventure
The past seven months have been the wildest, most amazing, heart-frenzied times I have lived in my short twenty two years, but to be honest I have only truly lived the past two and half years.. " For me to live is Christ, to die is gain." When God chose me to die to self and to be raised with His son, Jesus, in the summer of 2013 on a tiny island in the Bahamas, little did I know that two years later I would call that place my home. Spanish Wells, Bahamas is where my gracious Heavenly Father has brought me to live a life that reflects one who truly treasures Jesus above all else with a family that feels exactly the same! The Boykins are an example of a God-fearing, people-loving, passionate family whom I cherish and admire more than any family I have ever met! Transitioning from an American college athlete who had every opportunity to be "successful" in the world to a missionary in another country has not been easy. I graduated college, played my last football game and moved to this island in eight short days, but oh wow has my God been so faithful (2 Timothy 2.13). God told me to move here before Christmas back during the week of my birthday in October. Christmas Eve was somewhat difficult considering that it was the first Christmas Eve I would not be with my family. I was going to miss the Caldwell's and the Fetner's Christmas get together. Blakely and Emmy would not get to see their Uncle T for Emmy's first Christmas! The annual ride around the farm to see what my brother-in-law works day in and day out for would not be taken this year! So obviously, I got lonely...really lonely that night. Waking up on Christmas day, I realized something. I wasn't comfortable.. I was in the will of God. The One True God! Yahweh! The Great I Am! Abba! I was not in the places back where I considered home. My family would not have me around this Christmas. Not because I didn't want to be there, but because I want as many people with me, in God's family, when we meet Jesus for the first time (1 Timothy 2.3-4)!! I was exactly where He wanted me to be! I walked the trail leading to a field in a small Haitian community named Blackwood saying a silent prayer to myself, " Dad, may Your Name be exalted today! Use me how You want! I am Yours. I love You!" The field was the place where I died.. two years earlier! As my brothers and sisters in Christ flooded the field with smiles and laughter, God filled my heart with an unexplainable joy (Romans 15.13)! I sat there and looked at these kids, twenty or more kids from the ages of three to fifteen, playing kickball with no shoes, dirt-stained faces, and smiles that are only given by the God so loving that He allowed a twenty two year old man to witness.. talk about undeserving! I was sitting in the shade against a fence made from pallets and a small boy named Gino walked up to me and jumped right into my lap! A boy whose skin was as dark as night, and felt as light as a feather in my lap with the biggest black eyes and an even bigger smile! We had a conversation that consisted of very little words. This boy, Gino, was completely different than me. I do have a pretty descent tan and a big smile but we have a completely different physical appearance; however, I fall back on what the Lord said in 1 Samuel 16.7 says when he said.."man looks at outward appearance,but the Lord looks on the heart"!! Did you catch that?? The Lord, Abba, Yahweh, The Great I AM looks on the heart! Gino and I have very different physical attributes, but we have a heart that is gazed upon by the Creator of the universe! Wow!! Not only are our hearts looked upon, but He desires to change it! God desires to come in and conquer the hearts of myself and Gino! To completely defeat the flesh and make a new creation (2 Corinthians 5.17)! Even so different, God spoke through a little boy named Gino! A boy in which I have nothing in common, but the Gospel! The Gospel of Jesus Christ! We were created in Jesus, through Him and for Him (Colossians 1.16)! And that is why I am here. That is why God sent me here.. to die even more, so that I might truly live and to be a servant (Matthew 28.16-20)! Jesus didn't die to make bad men good..and trust me, I was a bad dude.. but Jesus died to make the bad men live! Live for Him.
Help me in this season of my life to fear You! Help me treasure You above all! Allow me the opportunity of planting seeds of Hope, the one true Hope, for kids like Gino and men like me! You have all of me! I am so in love with You, Jesus!
Hidden in Christ with God,