Jon’s Pre-comments: As I proofread this latest blog post from Jess, it struck me that the emotions, excitement, and worry feel very similar. The major difference is the way we view the circumstances behind the emotions. For instance, you can feel Jess’ anxiety in this blog post. In these same circumstances, I have been full of excitement. Changes tend to elicit anxiety in some people while excitement in others. The feeling that is in our gut is the same, but the way we anticipate the change is much different. I am exited about the new opportunities, new people, new places to learn about and explore.
Sometimes the road gets rough, let’s face it, we live in Africa. Honestly though, it happens all over the world for all of us at some point. The road that seems to be nice and straight, smooth and laid out before us gets a little more curvy and a little more potholed.
Admittedly, for me our transition from Chencha to Soddo has been one that has been full of anxiety and discouragement. Even though we still have the precious relationships with our friends and fellow believers in Chencha we are in a new town with new roads and new routines. A lot of times it takes me losing my nice smooth road to be reminded it isn’t the road I should be focused on. The road IS going to change, but my heavenly Father is always the same. This time of transition has been a time that the Lord has drawn me in and comforted me and I have longed for His word. These are times of refinement and I praise the Lord that He is doing a work in me.
I have struggled with knowing where my place is. I’m a wife and mom. Now, I’m a home school teacher and I was teaching English (which I plan to continue). We are still involved with projects we came here to do but, one thing I have realized during this difficult road is that just because the Lord calls you to one road doesn’t mean that there won’t be others along the way. We all have different gifts, we are different members of the body of Christ. Our ministries look different. And, that is okay. Right now as we transition and continue to work with Onesimus we are here, where we feel the Lord has called us, we are trying to build relationships, trying to encourage fellow believers, and trying to empower the local churches. I say trying because sometimes the Lord uses the times you aren’t trying or doing anything specific to mean something to someone that you may never even realize. We don’t fully know what the Lord is doing with our time here in Ethiopia. We know we are a part of a wonderful ministry, Onesimus. We also know that we want to be obedient to our Lord and so for now we are riding out this bumpy road to see what the He has waiting.