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Friday, July 27, 2018

Molding clay

Let us rationalize. The hardships of missionary life: Heat. Hurricanes. Leadership problems. Change in structure. Government corruption. Hassled at road check points. Workload. No a/c. no hot water. Isolation. Loneliness. Communication challenges. Language learning. Overcrowded rooms. Long lines with no ending. Constant interruptions. Thieves. Not being one of them. Beggars. Single parent problems. Changing plans. Everything takes longer. Shopping an hour away for milk. Car and house repairs with no maintained man. Male dominated culture. Perfectionism. Living up to expectations. Questions about singleness. Working alone. Control freak. Near fatal accidents. Seeing fatal accidents. Poverty everywhere. Feeling non-supported. Not good enough. Death of babies. Coping alone. Protecting children from riots. All expectations on my shoulders. No help in decisions. Guilt from saying no. can't afford a special treat. Orphans needing homes. Neighbor passing away. Girl down the street beat up by her boyfriend. Friend dying of disease. Illnesses. Changing friendships. Poor medical care. Misunderstandings. Dealing with the village peoples problems. Running a nonprofit. No time for dating. Foreigner taxes. Missing births of siblings kids. Missing weddings. Missing funerals. Friends moving on. Adjusting to a new culture. Dodging bullets. Being cheated, lied to, threatened, abandoned, used. Overwhelmed. Tiredness. Burnout. Anxiety from being stared at. Worry from the darkness at night. Frustration from fumbling through the 2nd language. Panic from something breaking and no one to help fix it. Sorrow from missing out on family get-togethers. Disappointment from trying to voice the realities to the comfortable and being tossed aside. --------------------------------------------------------------- "missionary lives are lived in a state of urgency, importance, precedence. You do not retreat, pause to cry, you do not stop. Yet it is a must. We indeed go, abandoning everything to be sent and I would never trade this life. But when the water rises, and we feel like we are sinking, we have to let the anchor descent and lodge. We must draw back. De-stress. Grieve." -Girlrelentlessblogspot. ----------------------------------------------------- So here I am. Trying to articulate my feelings. Trying to overcome the guilt and shame and heartache of not doing enough, helping enough, working enough. Yet I've never had a week completely off from work in 5 years. Why the people pleasing? Why the stress of trying and trying? I'm learning that Jesus wants me. Just me. Not my actions, not my duties, not my achievements, just me. Devotion with me. Time with me. Stillness with me. To come to His feet and cling. To leave all the worries and anxieties in His hands and accept the grace that He freely gives. --------------------------------------------------- "The only way to enter into joy is surrender. Letting go of my need to control it all. Save everyone. Have all the answers. Understand the suffering. Just curl into Jesus's arms and let the rest slip away." -Sarita Hertz ---------------------------------------------------- "So, in the days and months and years to come, when you feel misunderstood, remember that no one understands your foreignness like Jesus, the One who came to the most foreign land to show his beloved creatures Truth and Light. He will understand your sorrow like no other. You have seen so much change in your years here. Change in the people around you, change in yourself. And you are tired. So tired. Remember Christ is your rest. Circumstances change, and communities change and, in the end, He is all we have to hold onto. So, don't lose hope. He is our hope. His love never fails. It will never fail you. Though organizations may fail you, though supporters may fail you, though cultural acquisition may fail you, though people you love and invested in may fail you, though you may even feel like you've failed yourself, still one thing will not fail you: the love of the Great Three in One will never fail. And one day, this squeezing in your heart and this aching in your bones from all these years and all these travels and all the years and travels to come, it will all be undone. Everything will be made new."-a life overseas ------------------------------------------------- "God did not create the world and then abandon it to run itself. He is not sitting in a heavenly throne room passively overseeing the activity on earth. God is orchestrating history. He is present and in the middle of human activity. God is actively at work redeeming a lost world, and He chooses to involve His servants in carrying out His redemptive plans." - Henry Blackaby ------------------------------------------------- And oh, I am grateful. So grateful to be a part of it. To be the daughter he wants to use. No not because I am good enough. Not because I'm strong enough. Only because I'm willing. Because I love Him more than anything this world has to offer. Because he chooses the weak, the outcasts, the lonely, the humble. He has been my stable rock through this eventful year. I've put up many walls after giving my heart away and that road leading me to carrying my lifeless child in my arms. He is starting to break those walls down. I'm trying to allow him at least. To making friends on misson teams to having to say goodbye and never hearing from them after day 7. He's trying to tell me community is good and healthy and I won't be alone forever. He's helping me destroy the walls of fear and selfishness and blocking out the world to not get hurt anymore. He has shown me strength and grace and mercy and has grown me and shown me and taught me. Though the water rises and though the future is unclear, to Him I will cling. --------------------------------------------- "yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with him. I no longer count my own righteousness through obeying the law; rather, I become righteous through faith in Christ. For God's way of making us right with him depends on faith. I want to suffer with him, sharing in his death, so that one way or another I will experience the resurrection from the dead." - Philippians 3:8-11