Friday, August 01, 2014

Hindsight

Dear Kelly, you wrote this toward the end of your first term.  Well done.  You always were rather introspective.  So now, you're here- at the beginning of your second term and here's what you need to know. Your first term you played it safe.  

There were reasons for this like having two small boys, and not wanting to burn out right away.  Mission accomplished.  You didn't burn out.  And you're back for round 2- not everyone can say that.  And you're here with a baby (don't hide behind her).  But also don't drag her all over creation in the name of "not playing it safe".  There is a healthy middle ground.  You got a lot of things right your first term
  • You welcomed well.  You made LOTS of people feel at home at your place.
  • Your kids don't hate you were eager to return to Uganda.
  • You still love your husband.
  • You didn't neglect the Lord.
  • You were available to help people when they asked.
  • You kept your champions well informed
But this time, take some risks.  Do something you're not sure you're good at.  Love somebody who is different from you.  Really love them.  Say yes to something that scares you.  Engage with the culture more. Really learn the language, any language.  

So here we are, second term, do the crazy thing.  


"the Word became flesh and made His dwelling among us." -John 1:14  Other translations say "He pitched His tent among us..." or "He moved into the neighborhood..."  It's more than just coming for a visit or getting a stamp in His passport.  He became a citizen.  He walked the dusty roads with people.  He sat around the coffee shop and listened to people's stories.  He ate their food.  He read their books.  He spoke their language.  He probably would have ridden on boda-bodas and sat in traffic jams.  And if I am really here in Uganda to imitate Jesus, and love like He loved- then so far- I've pretty much failed.

view from a distance.
I confess that I've taken the easy road on most days.  I work out in my living room, not jog on the street.  I invite people up to my house, not visit in their homes.  I drive with the air-conditioning on and the windows rolled up.  I don't make time to open the Word with the one Ugandan who is in my home every day.  I shop at the grocery store, not the market. 

I love my small group of university ladies, and I meet with them at their hostel.  But that is one victory out of many failures.  And I begrudged going down to the hostel a time or two.  

Missionaries aren't perfect.  We may be commended for leaving homes and families... but if we haven't engaged in the community and culture we've come to- I wonder how much that sacrifice blesses Him (to obey is better than sacrifice).  I do believe God {in His grace and mercy} has used me this first term, but there are a million ways I avoided being used.    

I'm grateful His mercies are new every morning.  I'm gonna need them this year of living in Love.  It's definitely going to be a year of stretching; as I allow His life to fill this skin of mine in 2013.  I'm not exactly looking forward to the heart surgery He will have to do, to get my life to look like His- but I am confident of this: He who began a good work in me, will be faithful to complete it (Philippians 1:6).  And He is able to take this heart of stone, and put in me a heart of flesh (Ezekiel 11:19)!

2 comments:

  1. Kelly, this is GREAT! "We may be commended for leaving homes and families... but if we haven't engaged in the community and culture we've come to- I wonder how much that sacrifice blesses Him (to obey is better than sacrifice)." A million times, Amen! Prayed for strength and courage for your next term.

    ReplyDelete
  2. "do the crazy thing"
    yes, this
    crazy abandoned to love!

    ReplyDelete

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