These past couple days have been a whirlwind. Here are a few highlights.
We met with a group of people who are working with agriculture here in Senegal and one guy who is visiting from Chicago who is involved in urban agriculture (basically planting gardens in the middle of the city)
The group traveling to the South part of Senegal left and Keri and I stayed behind.
We swam at Pink Lake. It is so salty that you can easily float with no effort at all.
We drank Ataya with Djibi and two German girls, Anna and Elena, that are staying at Herma’s before going back home. One of them is a carpenter and wowed the boys at the shop with her skill in making an Adirondack chair.
We ate dinner at a very nice German lady’s house here that Herma knows. She made soup and an amazing beef and vegetable dish and then whipped up yogurt and cream until it was a mousse consistency and then you poured a fruit sauce on it. Very delicious.
All in all the trip is going well. I am very ready to be home and be with my family. I think about all the things I want to do when I get back. New foods to try and how to experience some of the same kinds of relationship building activities. It has been a blessing to eat breakfast every morning and afterwards read in the Bible. We finished up Luke and are in John at the moment. Depending on the company also depends on what language you hear the Bible read in.
But, is there more? Have I experienced all I “should”?
I’ve found myself caring less and less about the language barrier with the people here. Of course, I’m always trying to learn new phrases and customs that help me relate with those around me. But, when I try to focus on a conversation that is not directed at me, my mind tends to wander or I strike up a conversation with someone I can understand. I always have people around me who can speak enough English for me to translate. Therefore, it is comforting to know that if there is a question I need to answer or knowledge that I need to have, there is someone willing to converse with me in the same language.
Perhaps, there is some truth with how God speaks to me as well. Maybe I see people around me in relationship with God and I see how he is working in their life or leading them in a certain direction. Do I have enough trust and faith to wait for God to talk to me directly? I should.
There are a handful of times when God speaks to a group of people; the writing on the wall and God speaking to the people and telling them that Jesus is his son in whom he is well pleased. Most other times, the speaking comes one on one. Cain, Abraham, Moses, Gideon, Elijah, Mary, Joseph, Saul, etc. I realize that I enjoy the passages more that have a specific call. If God asked me to take my family to Egypt, I would. If he asked me to liberate my people, I would. But how would I feel if he said that I needed to move to a land he would show me? Would I respond, “That’s not specific enough, God. You gotta do better than that for me to follow.”
I have talked with many people and always gave the advice that when you seek the Lord, He will never let you down and never let you miss something you’re supposed to know. Easy to say, tough to live out. Yet, I am still comforted because I still trust that advice.
In a recent blog by Ann Voskamp, she says, “God didn’t give Abraham a map. He gave him a relationship.” Rules are easy. They are cut and dry … black and white … right or wrong. Relationships are messy. Sometimes up, sometimes down … laid back or intense … you never know what tomorrow might bring except that when you are in relationship with Jesus, it’s the trust that’s comforting in knowing that he cares for you regardless of the circumstances.
Have I missed something yet? I doubt it. I look to him everyday for guidance. Perhaps we are at an oasis and he’s letting me rest. If so, then I welcome it. When he says it’s time to move and the clouds are no longer covering the water I was drinking yesterday, then I will pack up my tent and go to the land that He shows me.