Sunday, October 16, 2016

Pride and Impatience: Part Two

During the busy-ness of trying to run the clinic, help my new teammates settle and navigate the social labyrinth of Mozambican work culture, I also had two huge blessings: the ultrasound machines and my equivalencia exam.

Both of these blessings kept me running and deserve a blog post of their own. But what I will say now is that they required me to travel at an already exceedingly busy time.

Why was it so busy you ask? Well... the clinic was caring for roughly 50-100 patients a day. This was complicated by electric and water shortages. Staff was new and needed my attention. There were lots of cultural, educational, logistical question marks that had to be addressed. And it felt like... (whether this was true or not, I don’t know)... I was the only one who could do anything about it. Add to this the fact that I received two short-term teams at the same time and you might get an idea.

Some days I felt like I was walking on water. Other days I was clearly drowning. It was perhaps the busiest and most chaotic time of ministry I’ve yet to experience.

I will say that I am so grateful for the help God provided in the new volunteers (Amy B and Sheri G) and the Mozambican staff (M, J & P). Their tireless servant-heartedness is what really made the day to day miracles possible.

However, I’m not proud of where my heart was at this time. I had let busy-ness supersede intimacy with God and pushed obedience aside for expediency. Unsurprisingly, I was miserable.

Lord, forgive me!

Moreover, I was so busy I wasn’t soaking in the word of God. I was running on my own strength. And when that ran out I became a cranky, controlling mess. It was ugly. Very ugly.

Lord, please forgive me!

I share this with you because I value transparency. And who knows, perhaps this will serve as a warning to others. But I also share it as my open confession. Hidden and glossed over sin has a way of festering and coming out again and again. I want it exposed so I can heal and be made more like Him.

But I also share this to tell you where the Lord, Our Great Shepherd, has recently led me. It’s a place of intimacy, purity and rest such that I have never experienced before.

Getting to a place of intimacy required cutting many things out of my life. This freed me so I had the time to spend with Him. Some of these things were ‘good’ but still technically clutter. He is still cutting things away but I don’t mind... I love that I have more time with Him. Oh, how I want more of Him!

Getting to a place of purity required showing me areas of life that are/were hiding pet sins. Some of these sins are more obvious than others but all of them stumble me and others. All of them make it impossible to run the race of endurance. May He make me holy as He is holy!

Getting to a place of rest was perhaps the greatest surprise of all. It is absolutely supernatural. In fact... as I try to describe it, I’m at a loss for words. It’s so beautiful and so comprehensive that... it must be experienced to be understood. Words alone don’t help. I will say this, for me at least, it is the absence of rushing, anxiety, or despair. And it is good.

But what about the clinic? What about the paperwork? You ask. Fair questions. That too is a long-ish affair. It will have to wait until next time. I have so much to say... I’m going to take it slow and easy. And I’m going to try and share it in the order that it happened. Putting some stories in order won’t be possible but I’ll do my best.