Here is a guest post from Darren & Kirsi West, the Lead Pastors of Real Life Church, in Simcoe, Ontario, Canada. They have been in ministry together for 21 years, serving God across Canada. Their passion is to see people walking in freedom and fulfilling their God given destiny. With a love for His presence and hearts that long for His Glory, Darren and Kirsi believe in one decided truth, “One Word From God Changes Everything!”
Imagine with me for a moment, that you are standing on the edge of a cliff, and you can’t see what is below you, your heart is pumping, your adrenaline is flowing, your mind is racing, and without hesitation you take a step, and with a BIG smile on your face… you jump!
It sounds adventurous doesn’t it?
Well, if you’re an adrenaline junky, your juices are already flowing. And, if you’re into Extreme Sports, you are tracking with me already and this blogpost is for you. But if you are a little squeamish and unsure about all of this, keep reading!
Living the Extreme Life With Jesus
Today, I want to share with you, the story of an extreme and radical life my wife and I have been blessed to experience. This is not a story about some extreme sport like base jumping or sky-diving. I’m talking about living the extreme life of faith with King Jesus!
Never a dull moment, always expecting the unexpected, believing in the One who is able to do exceedingly, abundantly, more than you could ever ask or think. (Ephesians 3:20)! That is real life and that is real living. Living in a realm that is not limited by the normal, everyday existence, but a life that is empowered by a Real Living God. A God who“…searches all the earth for people who have given themselves completely to him…” (2 Chronicles 16:9)
God loves leading His people out of their comfort zone into a realm of total dependence on Him. [tweet this] My wife and I answered that call, and now, after 21 years of ministry together, we are still in awe of how relentless God is, to keep us fully trusting in Him. I absolutely love Proverbs 3:5-6, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight.” But the interesting thing is,
God will never give up on showing you the areas of your heart where you are leaning on your own understanding and you don’t fully trust Him.
And that is where this story begins!
When We Had No Plan B
It was in the late Fall season of 2005. I was the Lead Pastor of a church in Northern Ontario and I was sitting in a planning meeting for our upcoming Christmas program, when I felt the touch of Holy Spirit, and heard His still small voice say, “It’s time to prepare for your next season.”
“But wait a minute, I’m really quite content here”, I argued. “I’ve been in this church for almost 5 years. The church is growing! Life here is really good. I have a good salary, a nice house with a picket fence, I’m living the dream!”
It was at this moment that I realized,
God is more interested in my potential than my position, more desirous to grow my character than me staying comfortable and determined that I fulfill my destiny.
Our season was over and now it was time for the next adventure.
Within the next couple of months God began to speak to us about stepping out into a realm of trusting Him like never before. Sure, we had stepped out in faith before. We had moved across the country years before, from Ontario to British Columbia, to take on our first full time ministry position as youth Pastors. We moved before we had the job, believing that it was ours. However, we had a backup plan because my wife’s family lived there and if it didn’t work out I could work with her dad. We had a plan B!
We then moved back to Ontario after 4 years without a job believing that God would provide but I had my family close by and if I got desperate, I could work for my brother. We had a plan B!
Our move to Northern Ontario was a little easier and didn’t require that kind of faith as we were called by a church and had a secure position. But now we were facing a real test of our faith. God was calling us to step out, not knowing for sure where we were going or what we would do. As we prayed and sought direction, it became more and more evident God was calling us to Ottawa, Ontario, the Nation’s Capital.
“But God, we don’t know anyone there. We have no family there. We have no friends. How will we make money? I don’t have a backup plan. There is no plan B.”
It was then, that God began to reveal my lack of trust in Him. It was then, that I realized, I always had a backup plan in case things didn’t go the way I thought they would. Now God was asking me to completely trust Him with all my heart and not try to figure things out, but acknowledge that He is my provider, He is my refuge, and He is my source for everything I need in life.
Did God come through for us? Absolutely! For 7 years we experienced God’s faithfulness and goodness. We walked in His divine plan and destiny for our lives and walked in His blessing. Did we have to continue to trust in Him with all of our heart and lean not on our own understanding? You better believe it!
How would I describe our adventurous life with Jesus? It is as I explained at the beginning of this story. It is like standing on the edge of a cliff, you can’t see what is below you, your heart is pumping, your adrenaline is flowing, your mind is racing, and without hesitation you take a step, and with a BIG smile on your face… you jump!
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He will make your paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6