Its been a journey for sure! A journey that really began in 2009 with my first visit to Africa. Less than 4 years later… I am living in Kenya and preparing to move out to a village west of Kisii Town & Ogembo. Up a 30 minute drive on a red dirt road, deep mud in the rains, hard rough terrain in the dry weather – neither of which can be maneuvered easily without 4 wheel drive.
No electricity, no running water, no Saturday morning breakfasts with all my kids, no sleep overs with the most amazing grandkids EVER! No visits with my parents. No home fellowship with the best HF leaders and mentors God has ever blessed anyone with. No early Sunday morning prayer with a pastor the Spirit of God simply pours out of. No breakfast dates with God’s sweet blessing of friendship. No hugs and blessings with the most precious church family I have ever known. And yet….
I find myself filled with anticipation, wonder, expectation, deep intercession and a faith in the God of the Universe – that HE – Who’s thoughts for me outnumber the grains of sand – that HE, Who inclines His ear, Who bends down to hear my prayers, that HE, Who directs my steps with His eye, that HE has a plan that He has chosen me — to be a part!
It’s taken me a bit to get here… but just as God promises… He rewards those who seek HIM!!! I don’t doubt I will need reminding – but today – this is where He’s brought me.
June 4th! Exactly 5 months ago today we landed in Kenya. I was exhausted from the flight on which I cried from a depth I had never known… sobbed at times uncontrollably as we traveled across the ocean. I had hugged my mom 24 hours earlier and felt her restraining her heart. I had turned then to hug my daughter, fighting to restrain my own. I inhaled deeply the fragrance of sweet love as I held my grandkids and silently prayed with all I had that God would hold them tight. I prayed with my best friends as we cried together saying so very little. And with such pride, mixed with an indescribable pain, I looked at all 5 of my kids, my Johnny, Ruth & Levi, I glanced at the belly holding the grandbaby that would be born in a short six weeks, I looked around at my friends and family… and I knew, I knew that God would remain faithful and that while I could hardly imagine how – that God would sustain, strengthen and equip me to do what He had asked me to do.
Ndiyo! – YES! – it has been harder than hard. Kabisa! – Absolutely! – I have wanted to quit more than a few times. Kweli! – Indeed! – I have clung to the One thing I KNOW to be certain. Hapana, no, not my faith – lakini afadhali, but rather, the ONE in Whom my faith rests!
When God says, “GO”, no matter what that means, how do you say no? Don’t get me wrong, I wanted to. There has been many times He has said, “GO” and I have NOT wanted to… “GO” tell her you are sorry…. “GO” tell him you were wrong… “GO” give that man the five dollars in your pocket… “GO” ask her if she knows me… “GO” help them move on your day off… “GO” fix that family a meal…. “GO” visit him at the hospital…. “GO” to the early prayer meeting… “GO” sit quietly and read this chapter… “GO”… share this verse with her… the list goes on and on. I can’t say I always went… oh… how I wish I could say that. But what I can say… I’ve never been sorry when I did. I may not have understood, I may not have seen the reason why, but I have never ever been sorry I obeyed when God has said, “GO”.
Somewhere along the line, God has opened my understanding that there is eternal purpose of which I do not know. An eternal purpose, an eternal good, an eternal blessing… and while I do not know the details – I KNOW the One from Whom that purpose, that good and that blessing will come!!! I trust HIM and HE is worth far far more than I could ever offer up in my meager obedience to “GO”.
So – as we sit between finishing our time at Language School, resting some and preparing to take a few days to “GO” and rest and seek Him more, between this and heading up that dirt road and waiting for HIM to say “GO”… I find myself scooting to the edge of my seat… just HOW, Lord Jesus, are You going to show YOURSELF FAITHFUL????
If you are a follower of Christ – you TOO – are a “MISSIONARY” and – you TOO – are being told to “GO”. Is it next door? Is it to that table on the other side of the coffee shop? Is it to that one you argued with last week? Is it back to fellowship?
My prayer today is that you and I will be quick to respond when our GOD says “GO”!
This Sunday the theme for my three-year-old class was “Jesus says: GO!” and I’ve been thinking about it ever since. Then I read this post…I pray that I would have the understanding to see God’s direction and the courage to go where He directs.
I’m so excited to see how life unfolds for you in your new location, and to see God’s faithfulness to you two as you step out to do His work.
PS–Mal just gave me a hug and kiss and I’m passing it along to you now. 🙂
I love you both so much. I so wish I could be there with you. Went to Jamaica and had a wonderful time loving and sharing everything I have and know about God. I don’t like coming back to America. I didn’t get called to Jamaica but it did teach me a lot and Kari, message me when you get time so we can chat about it. I am reading a book called Kisses from Katie. A young missionary in Uganda. It brings tears to my eyes cuz she is doing what I want to do. Pray that God gives me the discernment quickly so I can start doing for him more. I feel my work here in the US is done. Where do I go??? MUCH MUCH love to you both