Thursday, June 24, 2010


Friends of ours are adopting a little girl from Ethiopia. They've gotten her picture, they're loving her from here. I try, but I can't imagine how it must feel to know that your child is across the world and you want to hold her and love her, but because of this thing or that thing in their government, you have to wait. And wait. And wait. They will be traveling to Ethiopia to go through the court process - they will meet her and hold her and love her and then they will leave her and go back a few months later to pick her up. Can you imagine?

We were with them last night. He had been to Uganda on a mission trip earlier this year. She has been passionate about helping orphans in this world for several years. They are committed to helping those who are unable to help themselves. He was telling us about how difficult it was to come back to this life of extravagance after being there, where running water is a luxury. He took a Ugandan man to Walgreen's a couple of weeks ago and he was in awe and told our friend that everything you could ever want was right in that store... Our friend was looking at the same items in disgust.

Its about perspective, right?

I'm frustrated that we don't have more money to give. That we WANT to give, but we just don't have it to give. Sometimes I ask God: "Why did you give us generous hearts, but not the means to be generous?"

And then I look around at all of this STUFF in this house.

Socrates - "The unaware life is not worth living."

How do I keep myself aware in all areas of my life? In terms of: not accumulating more? being fully present for my girls? not being envious of what others have that I can't have? not being bitter and resentful about not being able to live the way I WANT to live? not being grateful for what I do have? wondering when it is going to be our turn? wondering why the breaks don't seem to swing our way? How do I fall so quickly into complacency?

He said something last night that really resonates with me: after seeing their lives and how they live, he realizes that talking about and arguing about and debating about politics (or anything, really, we just happened to be talking about politics at that moment) just doesn't matter. Its all about living for God and doing what we can for his glory. Its about being more successful so we can give more - not live more. We live comfortably. We have all the food we could ever want, all the clothes, all the heat, a/c, water, etc. Others don't.

My burden this morning, is figuring out how I and my family need to change to become more aware.


Amy 10:24 AM  

I struggle with this too. We're in a much more comfortable place than we were five years ago when Rob was finishing seminary. We moved to Oregon with barely a dollar to our name. We are at the point where we are trying to "give back" and be "others focused." I do fall into the trap with "I want this and I want that." My life would be a little more enjoyable if I just had "that" like my friends to. "That" ends up not being all that important in the long run.

We've actually talked about at some point in our ministry moving back to a place like Gary. MANY of the churches in our denomination moved out of the city and into the suburbs. The city is where there are many, many needs right outside the front doors of the church. It is very draining and exhausting and hard not to get bitter/judgemental/frustrated when working with the poor/homeless. That's why I am not sure God is calling us to do it anytime soon. Our heart is willing so we'll see.

You might want to consider at some point doing some sort of family mission trip. Friends of mine who are a couple years ahead of us (have three kids ages 9, 5 and 3) are spending the whole summer in Mexico helping out long term missionaries. I've actually thought about taking Hailey and Derek in a couple years to the orphanage I used to go to in Mexico when I was a youth leader. The missionaries said I could come anytime and have my kids play with the Mexican kids and help with normal household stuff--cleaning, cooking, doing crafts with them etc. My desire is for my kids to learn to think outside of themselves. It's so hard to do that in our culture.

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