Last night I was talking with my fiancee, Lesley, on the phone about how thankful I am for the difficulties that we are facing in our current situation of being in different towns in light of knowing how God is using and will use this to strengthen our marriage. Within talking about this, Lesley brought light to the fact that we also need to give ourselves and each other grace, as we may not always realize it, but we are consistently undergoing some level of culture-shock.
Until she had said this, I don’t think I had recognized that not only did I no longer know what normal was because even standing outside of my room in Kabale felt normal, but because when I return to the United States, things will never be the same (though I’m more than alright with that).
This made me think of an ABIDE student’s post from earlier in the day, where he said:
straight roads don’t train good drivers so if you want everything to be straight know that its not good. you need big challanges to win
I felt the need to clarify that we should not seek out trouble or purposely follow a crooked path, but that instead going through big challenges is the result of staying on the straight path, which is quite difficult.
Being in Uganda, being away from home and all that is “normal” for me, is not something that I feel I did fully by choice. I feel that God led me to this after a series of events in my life. Did I have a choice in coming here? Yes. Do I feel I would have been right to continue with seminary and push this off until graduating? No.
I’m obviously glad that I’ve met my wife here, but even looking at the state of my life before coming here, God has me here for a reason. I was very burned out on school and feeling like I needed to be involved in ministry more heavily to remember why it was I was still in school. I feel like he has restored a passion for being further educated and he has equipped me with a new form of accountability that I hadn’t ever thought I would have while in school, a wife.
Although it’s disconcerting to not know what “normal” is anymore, I feel like I am within God’s will and that makes me feel more secure than anytime that I feel I completely understand the trajectory of my life.
Brothers and sisters, let me urge you to always seek the Lord’s will, even if it means abandoning everything you know for something that is unfamiliar and new. But let me also clarify in saying that sometimes God keeps us in a place for a while…sometimes we are allowed to form a new “normal” or at least have a sense of permanence. If you don’t feel God prompting you to move, you might be exactly where he wants you right now. Don’t feel like the way God moves one person is the way he will move you, which is a reminder of why it is so important to ask him for his direction in your life regularly.
Submit in the every day, because that’s what he asks for. You may not know where your life will end up, but if you are saying “yes” to the Lord daily, you will end up where you should.
God bless you.