I walk into Target and push straight ahead-- drop in a pair of sparkly shoes and the obligatory Merona shirt before turning a hard left toward all things children. In order to not embarrass myself, I rely on friends like Krysten and Nina.
WHO, UNHCR, UNICEF, IRC ...
and I don't think I am super deep or super spiritual. It is just how I am made. In 4th grade I wanted to be a Sister of Mercy and I have had Africa on my mind since I was tiny. When I declared Social Work and then French and then International Health and then Nursing in college... I had plans to GO.
And then I forgot who I was and I got all mixed up. Then I got un-mixed up and I met a boy. Now I have this life and these babes and this man I adore. Only I still have this desire to GO and I also have this little family that plants my feet deep.
Umm, can you pass the cheese?
Everything else seems so trivial and I realize my brain can get a little muddled and I could think us all into a hole. My practical husband is sweet and says things like, "You're thinking about Africa aren't you?" In his good nature and "go for it!" kind of love that spurs me on, he says "Well, let's just go."
But I don't know what that means or what that really looks like and is that Todd or Jesus talking?
So the world refugee stats come to my mailbox each year in thick manual form and I flip through and I update my awareness. I surf through cyber links. I plead their case over coffee and ask my husband to sponsor just one more child. We all stay put.
"I desire mercy, not sacrifice," He says.
It is just that I want to live out this gospel life and I want to go and I don't understand how it all works together.
I just trust that He does and I hear the whisper that says... someday ...?
I am young in these areas and I am really asking the question.
Because sometimes I grieve lost time and wonder where I would be now... and this little family I love and serve is the delight of my life. So how do I honor both: my heart that beats for this family here and His family there? Our family... across the boundary lines.
Again, I am really asking the question.
But if you're reading, I have to be clear. Hear me say: there is room to live free because guilt has no value, no purpose. We are not all called to board a plane to Africa or work in the county jail.
But to live bigger? Braver?
To really hear Jesus when He says "love one another." To believe Him when He said, "When you did it to them, you did it to me."
And what of when we didn't...?
I watch this and I cry. This is not really a surprise. However, it really is the only reasonable response when you watch her touch their faces and live out the joy.
Is this what happens when you spend a life?
Could I spend myself this way? Live fearless and obedient like Katie Davis ... right here?
Not afraid of having too little, not afraid of living a little counter-culture.
Friends-- just. watch. her. This homecoming queen who drove a yellow convertible and loved sushi...
and then gave it all up to go...
Let her compel you ... let Him compel you. Then pray. Give? Go?!?
And be sure to drop in again real soon where we'll be talking a whole lot more about this spending...
but more on that later...!!
Peace, sweet friends.