One Month

I’ve probably mentioned this in each of the posts I’ve written since getting to Zambia four weeks ago (I can’t believe it’s been so long!), but I am learning so much.  Lately, it hasn’t been easy lessons.  The Lord is teaching me a lot about myself and my character, and it’s been tough.

Since I’ve been here, I’ve noticed that my personality is a whole lot different.  Just to give you an idea, a few Zambians have told me that I don’t talk enough; my whole life, I’ve heard the opposite of this!  It seems as though I don’t ever really have much to say—I just sit and listen to what other people have to say.  I’ve also struggled to feel apart of what’s going on around me.  It’s that “in a room full of people but I feel all alone” feeling.

I’m still trying to figure out why I am here.  To be honest, a lot of the time it just feels like I’m in the way and taking up space.  I hate this feeling!  It’s become so clear to me that I am incredibly task-oriented (maybe too task-oriented).  Without a specific task, I feel useless.  It’s also difficult to not always know what’s going on around me.  Krissy made a great observation when we Skyped a couple weeks ago:  for the past couple years, I’ve been someone that people can come to to get information.  During college (and even high school), I was blessed with some incredible leadership opportunities that allowed me grow as an individual and foster my leadership abilities.  Now I’m in a place where I really know nothing and have had to become dependent on other people (so not easy for me).  It’s a stark contrast from just a few months ago.

This past week has been hard for me—it’s safe to say the honeymoon phase is over. I miss being surrounded by friends, family, and familiarity.  I wish I could hang out with the people who know and love me best, who know when I need a hug and can tell when I’m upset….people who know just what to say to simultaneously encourage and challenge me.

This morning in church, I some great moments with the Lord (which was really cool, especially because I found the service quite…distracting. Let’s just say it wasn’t quite what I’m used to).  He made it clear to me that I am trying to fill voids in my life with all the wrong things.  I far too often try to be satisfied, filled, encouraged, and accepted by created beings, created things.  This morning the Lord reminded me that He loves me and cares for me, that He has a plan for me…that I can “search for all eternity long and find there is none like [Him].”

Tomorrow is the first day of classes at Georgia College.  Part of me wishes that I was in Milledgeville, going to dinner at El Tequila and going home to 721 to watch Dr. Quinn with Krissy, Amanda, and Julia…but I’m not. I’m grateful for the season of life I had in that crazy little city but am excited to see what the Lord has in store.  I think the biggest thing is that I’m a little bit scared (okay, maybe more than a little bit). I honestly have no idea what my next step is.

But God is good.  He has a plan.  He loves me.  Why and how do I so easily forget these simple truths?

For now, I’m going to hang out with some of the coolest kids I’ve ever met and try my best to proactively trust in the Lord’s provision of comfort and guidance.

But as for me, my prayer is to you, O LORD.  At an acceptable time, O God, in the abundance of your steadfast love answer me in your saving faithfulness.
–Psalm 69:13


2 thoughts on “One Month

  1. God is good. God is great. Sometimes the distractions from an imperfect and fallen world makes the fact that God is good and great a litte muddled. Try not to be anxious about tomorrow but rest in where God has placed you today. You have shown that your character is one that has a great desire to answer God’s call “who will go?” You’ve already taken a huge leap of faith by answering “here I am. Send me.” Listening is one of the skills God wishes we would learn. It’s why he gave us 2 ears and one mouth… unfortunately, our eyes tend to somehow overlook that fact and feel the need to speak twice as often as we listen. Maybe your time now, is God’s way of teaching you a new skill (one I wish I was more adept at.)

    Also, maybe God is showing you that too often we romanticize “out there” when the true lesson is “there’s no place like home.” In that, maybe God is preparing that your mission may not be the glamorous “out there” so you won’t be disappointed when He reveals where He’s taking you next. Truth is – you have already in THREE MONTHS post graduation experienced more than many people do in a lifetime. Rejoice! Your courage to hear and follow God’s call already has prepared you for challenges most of your friends – and older family members (aka your aunt, here) – have never experienced – and probably never will. Part of being on mission is to be able to enlighten those who never make it to the corners of the world. Most of us never leave Jeruselum or even make it to Samaria… you’ve already gone farther and experienced God’s faithfulness in ways that we haven’t (and may never be called to do – or have too much fear to do.) What a soldier for Christ you’ve already proven yourself to be. Rejoice!

    And, if you are one that feels misery loves company, take heart. At 51 (almost 30 years older than you) I struggle with the same feelings of not knowing where God wants me to be; what He has called me to do; what my next steps should be… and then that little devil, Satan, whispers that maybe I’m not good enough; maybe I’m not equipped enough; maybe I’m a little not worthy – or worthwhile. It’s an ugly place to find – kinda like being in the desert – in the middle of nowhere. (You are there physically, I’m there a little metaphorically.)

    Just remember. God is good. He wants to give you the desires of your heart. He is faithful to those who are faithful to Him… and you have been faithful. God is great. He can do anything; everything; magnificent things – and He will. Maybe, like your old auntie here, this is your season to be a little out of control – unable to know your next step. Not sure of where you are to be. Fully reliant on Him. In that time, He’s teaching patience. Perseverence. Dependence on Him. God will never leave or forsake you. He is preparing you for good works – in His time. And, you are EXACTLY where he wants you today. When it’s time for you to move, He’ll make sure you move. God is good. God is great. Rejoice, knowing He loves you and is preparing you for further, future work in His kingdom. I am so proud – and quite humbled – by your desire to follow and to raise your hand to God. Just cherish today and those children and workers God has put before you to serve TODAY. Remember: ni nkutemwa!

    “For I know the plans I have for you”, declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jeremiah 29:11

    For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith – and this is not from yourselves, so that no one can boast. For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.” Ephesians 2:8-10

    I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. Psalm 139:14

    God is faithful, who has called you into fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. 1 Corinthians 1:9

    Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Philippians 4:4

    [Aw, shucks… just go ahead and read Philippians 4:4-13. Good reading from a Good and Great God!]

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