This post, I promise, will bless you...my talented and beautiful daughter Sarah (21) wrote this "guest" post after a huge God moment in her life. Please read on and get ready for God to speak to you...I know He did to me when I read it. Blessings, Jay
“I’m not picking up that phone Ethan, because, you don’t want me on your team. I was in Croatia. I had one job, just one, and I failed.”
Ok. I am not a Secret Agent. I don’t work for the military, secret service, special ops..nada. The closest I get to being a spy is sitting here watching Mission Impossible 4 with my brother. And I love it! This quote is from a scene near the end of said film, where new team member Agent Brands is informing Ethan Hunt that he failed in his duty to protect his target in Croatia. Who was his target? Ethan’s wife, who was, as far as Agent Brands knows, murdered because he couldn’t protect her. He has carried this guilt around with him for a few years, and has to tell Ethan; he can’t accept his offer to be on his team, how can he? He failed to save this man’s wife from Serbian terrorists! You can see the pain and despair in Brands eyes; this isn’t something he could ever brush off, it effected his career; he stopped being a field agent after her murder. He’s just waiting for Ethan to tear him apart, kick him off the team, maybe even beat him up…and Ethan just asks him a question…
“How do you know she died?”
He’s so calm, so quiet about the whole thing. Brandt is taken aback. Ethan goes on to ask him if he ever saw a body, to which Brandt replies in the negative. Then Ethan, much to Brandt’s relief (the guy almost doesn’t make it as he fumbles to his chair) explains how he faked his wife’s death to keep her safe, and how he doesn’t blame Brandt.
“It was never your job to protect her” he says, looking right at Brandt,
“It was mine”
Wow! Brandt is beyond thrilled. He takes the phone, accepts the mission, and is back on the team. Ethan smiles at him as he leaves. All is good; Agent Brandt is set free from that debilitating guilt and restored to his former self. Ethan and his wife see each other. Ethan disappears mysteriously into the night. Epic music, movie ends.
Skip to after the movie, real life now folks. My brother and I are at the diner, talking, when we bring up a painful subject for me. It’s a friendship that went awry; not just any friendship, I lost my best friend. How it happened is not for this story, but suffice it to say that this has caused me to feel pain, doubt, guilt, anger, and hopelessness in abundance. This is not something I talk about with just anyone, haven’t even really talked about it with him. But I want my brother to know my heart.
As I talk about how God is healing some things in my heart, and the lingering feelings of regret and “could haves, should haves”, I tell my brother that, unfortunately, these doubts affect all my other friendships as well. I often think to myself, well, if I messed up one of the most important relationships in my life, what will happen to the rest? I don’t know if he is getting my point, so to illustrate it I say, “It’s like Brandt at the end of the movie, I feel exactly like that. Like I am saying to God, “God, You can’t possibly want me on Your team, to be in relationships with Your creation. I had my chance, I had one mission, and I blew it! Someone was lost because of what I failed to say and do. I failed one of Your daughters.”
As I sat there, hoping my point would sink in, my brother came right back at me with the next quote from the same movie, “And God is saying, it wasn’t your job to protect her, to save her, it is Mine.”
Boom! I was floored! And, just like in the movie, the shame and guilt lifted almost instantly from my shoulders. I felt just like agent Brandt. The one and only person who can blame me, doesn’t. God doesn’t blame me, or even hold me responsible…He wants me on His team. He is orchestrating how to save His children; that’s not my job. My job, my mission, and I hope I choose to accept it from now on, is to follow Him, be on His team, trust His plan. My responsibility is to rest in His grace and the truth that He has a good plan for me, for my lost friend, for all His children. It is a mission that, with God, is completely possible.
Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God, all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26
- Sarah Cookingham