I guess you could say I've caught the itch, I've become and addict. I just can't pass up on an opportunity to serve the Lord through building. Whether that mean giving up Saturday mornings to work with Habitat for Humanity in Bloomington, skipping school to do hurricane relief work on the Gulf Coast, spending spring break building homes for Habitat in Georgia, or moving to a foreign country for a year to renovate a Christian camp, it doesn't matter, I just can't bring myself to pass any opportunity up.
Some would look at all the time and effort that I've put into these kinds of trips or this type of volunteer work, and view it as a major sacrifice. I don't view it that way at all, in fact, it's just the opposite from my point of view. I view it as a privilege, and almost even feel selfish for doing it. No, I don't do this kind of work out of selfish motives, my own personal agenda is not my purpose. But I do find time and time again that nothing brings me more fulfillment, more meaning, more of a sense of purpose, or more joy as when I am able to use the gifts God has given me to serve Him.
"For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it" Matthew 10:39 What may look like a sacrifice, or a giving up of one's life, is actually a means of finding a life you never could have found otherwise.
That is why I feel so blessed to be able to spend this next year in Japan renovating a missionary camp. As most of you know, I spent 3 months last fall doing carpentry at the TEAM missionary camp in Karuizawa, and was then asked to return to fill in a position that had opened up. I've accepted and I'm starting, well, right now. I'm in Tokyo right now as I write this letter and will head up to the camp tomorrow morning. I'll be here in Japan for one year and by the end will hopefully have finished all the major renovation projects.