nearly seven months ago, i left Liberia. after an especially grueling season, i made the hard decision to fight for my emotional, mental and spiritual well-being and step off the mission field.
i dreamed of returning home to the States and resuming normalcy once more; i wanted to fall into a life of comfort and ease and forget all about the exhaustion of the past four years.
when i got home, i struggled a bit, as most missionaries do when it comes to reentry. the mass consumerism and excessive consumption of the Western world overwhelmed me. i felt guilty after lunch with friends, and i wondered if my kids in Liberia were hungry, if they’d had their fill.
mainly, though, i simply ached to be with them. these kids–they’d become my life. i’d welcomed them into my arms and my heart as if they were my own, and then i walked away from them. but the thing is: i had left pieces of my self, my very soul, behind with them.
and as more time passed, i started to wonder: how can i really live when i’m not whole, when massive portions of my heart lie an ocean away? and it was then that something deep inside me started to whisper, “the story is not over.”
i confess i dismissed it at first. a return to Liberia would be emotional suicide. i’m not ready. what if i can’t handle it again? what if this is just me, not being able to let go?
so i prayed, and i opened up the scriptures and sought out Truth. and i saw, woven throughout all its pages, i saw–the bleeding, tender heart of the Father for the fatherless.
i saw–that it’s when you give of yourself that you truly give.
i saw–that this life is not my own, and i don’t want to fill it with things that will only pass away.
i realized i wanted to live a life spent chasing after God and the things of His heart.
and you know what? for me, that’s found in Liberia.
because it’s one thing to serve the poor and the orphan, but it’s a whole other ballgame to identify with them and live among them, to enter into the hard places and hold their faces in my hands and tell them, “i’m here to stay.”
and i want to stay. i want to spend my days living out the scriptures, defending the cause of the weak and the fatherless, maintaining the rights of the poor and oppressed, rescuing the weak and needy (see psalm 82).
you see, i want my life to count for something, for my kids, who deserve someone to settle in for the long haul, someone to say, “i’m not going anywhere.”
and to do that i need to get my hands dirty. i need to step outside my comfort zone and give up the things that were never mine to begin with.
so i said yes. i stood in my church last sunday and raised my face high and told Jesus yes. even though my hands were shaking. even though the tears were falling. even when i counted the cost. i said yes–because he’s worth it.
and i’m looking for people who will say yes with me, who believe in me and the God that i serve and the work he has put in my heart to do. the timing is still off; there is still healing and some recovery i must go through before i can return to Liberia. and there are some very real, tangible needs that i cannot meet for myself that i need help with.
so please–send me a message, ask the questions, find out how you can get involved. i want you on this journey with me, friends.