I kind of had to force myself here. That is unusual, as most of the time I love processing through writing. I love the feel of the keyboard under my fingertips and the ability to tell a story on paper.
But not today.
Nothing is wrong. I just don't feel like baring my soul or blogging vulnerably. I've done it purposefully for almost two years now and have been blogging for a total of six years. Today I just feel like hiding. I feel misunderstood and judged. Blaaaaah. That's how I feel.
I just don't want it today, and yet even in this I am exposing myself.
Perhaps my mood is because Jim leaves next week to go back to the one place in the world that feels like home to me. I loved Ethiopia in January when we flew over for our court trip. I knew it had changed me, and that I could never go back to fully being who I once was. But I really understood how much it changed me the second trip, when we landed on Ethiopian soil for the second time, and I walked out of the airport into the warm air. My entire body seemed to sigh with relief, and not just because we were finally going to have our son with us. It just truly felt like home. The one place where I am not judged,where material possessions really don't matter like they do here, where friendships are authentic because life truly is lived together, where no one looks at the size of your home or the clothes you wear, where the heart is exposed.
Jim leaves in a week to go back to Ethiopia, and I stay here. I want him to go. He needs to go for so many reasons. He will be sharing the gospel with a dear friend while there, and he will have the blessing of preaching while standing on Ethiopian soil. He will visit orphans and widows and a dump ravaged with lepers and HIV, and knowing my husband like I do he will not see those diseases, instead he will see and lose his heart to people bearing the image of Jesus Christ. Jim will be the hands and feet of Jesus in a country so desperate for a Savior. He will fall into bed bone tired every night to the noises of dogs barking, and he will drift off to sleep inhaling the smell of dirt and coffee and incense, and then wake to the sun rising on a city marred with ugly beauty, listening to cocks crow, and melodic and haunting chants drift through his window. His feet will touch the land that gave us our youngest son. He will rub shoulders with people who exude joy despite circumstances that to my feeble American mind seem dire.
And I will be here.
It's sinking in that I am missing out on something huge, and yet in this moment God is asking me to stay home with my babies. We both could not leave them again so close to leaving them this Spring, and Jamesy is definitely not ready to be away from both of us. I know this was a big decision for Jim to make to go back so soon after we came home. I know he wrestled with it. I am proud of him. As much as Jim loves us, his family, he loves his Jesus more (Luke 14:26), and He is being the best example of Jesus to us by going.
I have heard it said so many times that Christians should just send money instead of going. That going wastes money. That makes my heart hurt. I have seen why we all should go at least once, but more than that I am a follower of Jesus. Because I am a follower He commands me (and every believer) to go. The timing may be different for some, I will agree with that. The place may be different, but it is hard to argue the words of Jesus.
Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age. (Matthew 28:19-20)
Right now is not my time to go, as much as I wish it were, but because I have gone before I know what I am missing.
When Jim returns he will be more like Jesus.
I wish it was my turn to go, but it makes me look all the more forward to July and preparing my heart to go back to the land that I love.
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