The other day I was playing a local game called Lido with Calvin, the Pryors’ youngest. It’s very similar to the game of Trouble, but it doesn’t have the fun popper in the middle of the board. Anyway, his strategy is one that I don’t think I’ve seen before. He liked to keep all of his guys together. According to his rules, whatever you rolled, you could split it up between as many guys as you wanted. So if, for example, he rolled a 4, he’d move each of his four guys forward one space so that they were still all together in a row. His progress around the board was quite slow, sharing each of his rolls between 4 different pieces, but he did make progress and even won some of the games.
I feel like life as a missionary is often like that. There are so many different things to be involved in and to do, but so little time to do each of them. In a big organization with big teams, you’d likely be more focused on fewer tasks, making more visible progress on each of them. But here, well, it’s a different story. Some of my on-going tasks for this year include: spending time in the village – language, culture, relationships; listening to my Viemo language recordings; trying to catch up on e-mails, both with leadership and others here in West Africa and with many of you back in the US; have team meetings; having other meetings; send out e-mail updates and post on my blog; spend time with friends and those I’m ministering to in the city; learn more about the dominant religion of the Vigué people; housework and errands; packing and getting ready to move into the village; work on steps needing to be done for the housebuilding process to move forward; spend time with Jen and the Pryors. And that is, of course, after things such as prayer and Bible study. Often I feel like progress is super slow, if any is made at all, but that’s because I’m constantly being pulled in so many different directions. If I were focusing on just a few of these, I could make much faster, more visible progress. But since I try to do a little here, a little there, it can often feel like I’m taking one step forward in one area and one step back in another. As I spend more time in the village, I get more behind on e-mails. As I spend time catching up on e-mails, I get behind on listening to my Viemo recordings. As I listen to those, I’m reminded of other things I need to be doing. And so around and around it goes.
And yet there is hope. Like with the strategy above in the game of Trouble, progress is made, be it ever so slowly. Pray with me that my eyes would be opened and I’d be encouraged by the progress that is made. My Viemo is improving, even if it’s slowly. I have gotten some e-mails replied to (and sorry to those of you who are still on my to-do list!). Just yesterday I finished watching a video series on how to reach people of another faith, something that I’ve been working on for a year.
Thanks for your prayers and continued support and encouragement in this snail-pace marathon!