I am really good at putting pressure on myself to do the impossible. This doesn’t always result in getting done what I need to get done; it really just helps me stress out about the things I just can’t achieve.
One of my latest goals has been simply to find “home” for myself and my family. I don’t really have a hometown, my family moved from my teenage home the weekend I left for college, and Hannibal has always seemed just like a transition town. Sure, I had friends and a church, and a house, but never really felt that “at home” feeling.
When we left for Uganda, I really was looking to find a place that felt like home. I don’t know what that meant… at all. It’s actually a little funny that I was looking for a place to settle down in the jungles of Africa. Wow, that was a mistake.
We loved Bundi, it is a beautiful place. The World Harvest team was wonderful, and very hospitable to us. We saw several houses that could have been ours and they were nice; more than livable. I love shopping in markets and walking dirt roads, seeing green everywhere, eating fresh food. And for my entire life I had envisioned myself as being a missionary in a place that looked just like Bundibugyo. Oddly enough, the feeling that that was where we needed to be was completely lacking.
I came away from Africa with a lot of questions and feeling really confused.
“Why, God? Why did you take me away from my kids for 12 days just to tell me that this wasn’t the place we should go?”
“Why isn’t this the place?”
“What is wrong with us?”
“Are we even supposed to be missionaries?”
“Have we been listening to you at all? Didn’t all the right doors open?!”
The answer to all those: “Trust in Me alone.”
I’m starting to think that maybe God is using all these events in our lives to cause us to trust in him at a deeper level. Nothing we thought was sure, was sure. What we saw for ourselves and our future is not what God saw.
If nothing else, my eyes are opened now to how widespread the need for the Gospel is. It is needed in the third world; but that isn’t the only place. If that’s the one thing I’ve learned, it’s probably worth all the confusion.
Back to the dilemma of finding “home”. We were on our way to Granada from Rome a little over two weeks ago and I was listening to my ipod. A song came on called “Tanzania” by Alli Rogers. I loved it first because it’s a song about being a mom, or just being a woman in two very different places (Chattanooga and Tanzania). I loved it second because of this:
But someday I will wake
in a body that won’t break,
On ground that doesn’t shake, not here.
And someday I will live
in a house that’s built by
hands that hold the world
Why haven’t I found my home here? Because it doesn’t exist. I may have said it a million times, and maybe I’ll have to say it another million times, but my home is in heaven – with my Lord. Not in this broken world.