The Uneventful Drive
This past week, we packed up and traveled 14 hours down to one of the remote villages we work with as a mission. The first day we drove 10 hours. During this drive our AC broke. We stopped to have it fixed and ate lunch at a restaurant with a pool. I let the boys swim some and even got to take a dip myself when Tyler got in a little over his head. It took about an hour and a half to get the the AC fixed, but it was worth it. About an hour later our guest in the car asked why he smelled fresh baked cookies. We pulled over as we saw some smoke and Joel yelled for water when he opened the hood. Thankfully it was only a rag and funnel that had been left under the hood and the fire hadn’t spread anywhere else. Another hour later we were stopped for about 30 minutes as we watched a crane try to help a stuck truck start moving again. When we arrived at our destination, Joel and I both concluded that the drive wasn’t that bad. I guess our definition of an uneventful drive has changed over the past few years. We made it within the time frame we were hoping to and never were stopped at one time for more than two hours, there is not much more you can ask for here.
Ministering As A Family
This was our first time to travel as a family and, I will be honest, I had my doubts. I knew we needed to try it, but I also knew it wouldn’t be easy. Our boys have their limits, but those limits are a little easier to control in the confines of our home. Here we traveled long hours, on horrible roads, to a place that was unfamiliar with even fewer comforts than we were used to having. It wasn’t an easy trip, there were definitely times that I wondered what we were thinking, but I also reminded myself that almost everything felt like that the first time we experienced it. However at the end of the trip, I was reminded of the joy and importance of sharing our ministry with our children, even when it makes it more challenging for us. Our kids were able to make connections with missionaries who rarely get to see other kids, they have memories that they will probably never forget and most importantly they were a part of what we were doing and we were able to serve together.
God grabbed a hold of me this weekend to give me a little of perspective:
- I feel sometimes like we have sacrificed a lot to live without AC and yet the family we visited lives in a hotter area without access to fans.
- My kids cheer when they see a box of cereal or a couple of strawberries, but these kids came running to me when I brought out the carrots we had brought for them.
- I rarely get to enjoy ice cream, but they rarely get to drink cold water.
Now I say this not to make a comparison of sacrifice, but for me it helped to gain a little perspective. I have learned that sacrifice can’t be quantified by amounts, but by the heart in which it was given. However, sometimes when I only see within our world, I think we have sacrificed so much and I therefore turn my back on what other sacrifices I might be called to make. To see others who have sacrificed even more to live in some pretty difficult conditions, helped prepare me for some of the sacrifices that I know are ahead for us.
The End Of a Wonderful Time
This trip marked the end of my dad’s time here. Their trip was amazing and we grieve to see them leave, but are so grateful they had the opportunity to come.
I’m SO glad your parents could spend this time with all of you. What an amazing gift for you all and them. I know how special it is to be able to have family know and understand your life on a much more intimate level. I am so glad you get to have that with your parents. Such a gift.
Carolyn Gaupo says
What wonderful pictures you share. It is so nice to see Mike & Renee with you. I give thanks to the Lord that they had that opportunity. But selfishly I am delighted that they are back. I was at Renee’s for a bible study today and was blessed by her and Sophie’s wisdom.
Your blog speaks of the sacrifice you and other missionaries are making. I don’t think we have any idea. Sacrifice to most of us is giving up some unnecessary small pleasure for Lent and thinking we are really doing something. I pray that when called on I will be able to make whatever sacrifice is asked and do it with a joyful heart. Boy (how holy does that sound) I hope I will be able to do it when the time comes.
Keep up the good work both of you, No, I mean all four of you as the boys are involved too. You bless us with your blog and your life stories. Tell Abe & Paul that we are praying for them still.
Carolyn Powell says
Thank you for ministering! Thanks for giving us a peek at what you do.
How different from life here!