Have you ever had a feeling of urgency to be somewhere or do something very specific? It's a feeling that does not leave you. You may have no peace until you obey the specific calling to fulfill that feeling. If you don't follow it through you may end up with a conviction and feeling of regret. It could be that small still voice telling you to see someone, do something, call someone or at least check-in with them to see how they are doing. It might even be simply being obedient to that sense that you must contact them for no reason at all, but when you do, they need you.
Ernest had this feeling in 2020 that he must be in Brazil for his 60th birthday. There was an urgency to it. During the lockdown, that feeling never went away. We didn't know how we would be able to make it happen, but God facilitated the way. God has a way of moving people by sometimes making them uncomfortable and lacking peace. The lack of peace is what causes them to make a move. This is what happened to us. As 2021 came to a close, we had no peace about where we were and we both knew that we had to get out of Europe. We prayed about where we should go to next, looking at Brazil but not knowing if the path was clear for us to be able to do so. In faith, we started to look at the entry requirements for the country, if it was possible to get in and started to look at flights. The path became clear for us to leave and we found a flight at a very reasonable price.
We were supposed to stay there for 3 months, but loved it so much that we extended our stay to 6 months. This gave us the time we needed to not only travel around the country, but to see the people we really wanted to see. This is where that feeling of urgency in 2020 and last year now has clarity. There were specific family members that Ernest wanted to see and was able to. Since we left Brazil in June, sadly two of them have passed away and a third one is dying. I became attached to his cousin Silvino (in the picture below) with whom we spent most of our time in Joao Pessoa. In spite of all of his trials of life, he had a very big heart and a sense of humour that made me laugh every time we met. My heart breaks today as he passed away this morning. I am very very sad. In my reflection, I thank God for moving us the way He did to be able to meet Ernest's family. I am grateful for each of them and how welcoming they were. It is an honour to be able to know who they are, where they live and to hear stories about their lives.
If you ever experience that urgency, unrest or lack of peace, follow it through because you never know what the reasons might be. The one thing I know is any act of disobedience will cost a person something. Obedience always blesses us in ways we cannot even imagine.