Staying home with the girls is very different here. In the States, when I needed a break or wanted to get out of the house, I would load the girls in our van and head to the grocery store (for free bananas for the girls), Target, Grandma's house, or meet a friend at the park. How I miss our van and the girls' car seats! We loved singing in the car and relaxing while driving around town.
Now, we meet friends at the park, walk to the cafo to drop off our milk containers to be filled, or meet Daddy for chai. But without a vehicle, we stay close to home. If I do need to go shopping for produce or staples, I leave the girls with our worker, Momma Mary, and walk down the hill to the visit the vegetable ladies or shop at the Super Duka, the local convenience store. Now that John is teaching, I try to do my shopping while he is at school. I will admit, I often have anxiety as I prepare to walk to town and work hard to find the courage to go. Over time, I'm sure I will become more comfortable and it helps that most of the local people speak English. I have to laugh at some of the mistakes I have made. I get myself talked into buying things I don't need or spending too much money because of the differences in language and culture. One day I came home with 70 limes (they are a little bigger than a golf ball) because I didn't want to tell the sweet vegetable lady no. They only cost $6 and I know she needs the money more than I do. I often buy a bouquet of flowers for $3 or $4 because I know Stephen is disabled and needs to pay his bills. I care about the local people and can see how hard they work for very little money in return.
Today, as I sat down to write this blog, I saw that my friend Sara had sent me an email. She shared a blog post written by Jennifer Rothschild, a Christian writer. In her blog, Jennifer writes that confidence and courage are two different things. Confidence is a feeling and courage is a choice. God doesn't expect us to feel confident. God asks us to trust Him enough to decide to have courage. You can read more by visiting Jennifer's blog at: http://www.jenniferrothschild.com/confidence-and-courage-the-same/
I chose courage as I helped our family to raise support and pack up our house in preparation to move here. I chose courage when I flew with two toddlers and my husband and traveled for over 25 hours. I chose courage when I followed God's calling to be a missionary and serve at RVA.
1Peter 1:7 says, "
Our faith in God is worth more than GOLD and our faith is refined by fire. In today's message I was reminded that the trials we go through grows our faith and makes us stronger. Our struggles also result in praise, glory, and honor for God.
This is a season of trials for me, but I will come out stronger. I have faith that God has plans to use my trials to help others. I will continue to be encouraged by God's word and faithfulness and will pray that I will have courage to continue to praise God and bring Him glory and honor as I work through these trials.
Will you pray with me?