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Mar 18, 2010

Some reflection

I just returned from evening chapel where my dear friend, Lacy, spoke about finding hope amongst suffering.  As always, her words were sincere, intentional, and thought-provoking.  In my case, the thoughts that were provoked were ones of gratitude and, well, for lack of a better word, hope.

As I sat there listening to Lacy, it occurred to me, as it does every so often, that I've never experienced any real heartbreak.  Sure, I've had my share of disappointments, I've seen things that I've longed for not work out, but heartbreak?  I don't think I can attest to that.  Maybe that's a good thing, something I should be grateful for.  And maybe it's not so good.  I worry that I don't know what it really means to hope.  To loosely quote Lacy, I'm not sure what it is to realize that the thing I long for the most or am searching for so avidly simply doesn't exist in this world, and that my hope should not be placed in an event, a relationship, etc., but in my Lord, Jesus Christ.

I've been preparing for my upcoming trip to Zimbabwe and have taken a bit of time to think about what I would like to gain from this adventure.  I've had a lot of people tell me that it is going to change me.  I've seen good friends wrestle with how to process and understand what they've seen and experienced during trips to Africa.  I've seen their faith shaken, their views of the world drastically changed, and have cried and prayed for friends who find themselves broken from the experience.  Part of me is terrified of it all, but a much larger part is excited for it.  Is that okay?  I mean, in some way, I feel like I'm ready to get a first-hand sense of the suffering that exists in this world.  I lead a pretty sheltered and privileged life and I'm pretty sure I don't appreciate it nearly as much as I should.  I'm also not sure that anything short of an eye-opening experience is really going to change that.  I'm so excited to see the work that God is already doing in Zim, and I'm excited to see what He's got planned for me and my team while we're there.  I certainly am hoping that it changes me...that it brings me back a more gracious and grateful person, ready to take what I've seen and respond with hope.

*I'm so grateful to have friends who are wise beyond their years, and believe me, I'm lucky enough to have quite a few of whom that can be said.  Check out Lacy's blog here.

1 comment:

  1. oh boots,

    i am thankful that you're already thinking about this! i am so excited about the things you will see and learn in Zimbabwe. God has planned this trip and is faithful to reveal the truths of the world to us, but never gives us more than we can handle (thank goodness!) i am praying for preparation of your heart and am so excited for the opportunity that you have to love on the people there with Jesus' hands and feet!

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