"Today we start the third day of our journey, leaving for Sudan without our suitcases. Lord, You're showing me how little I truly need apart from You. Sleep, clean clothes, clean body, A/C, Starbucks coffee- these things are not necessities. (It's amazing that I typically think they are necessities!) Thank You for my journal and pen. Thank You for the kind gift of a toothbrush (we got one from the first class section of our international flight- our suitcases were lost for 6 days). Thank you for instant coffee this morning and for a to-go cup. Such kind gifts from You. Thank You for these amazing views this morning of another part of the world that is still Your world. Lord, You are here in Africa. We're not the ones bringing You- You're simply inviting us in to this part of Your story, and showing us more of who You already are. What will we learn about You in Africa? Show us and change us. God, You are not an American!
The adventure of our MAF (Mission Aviation Fellowship- an organization of missionary pilots that fly small planes into rural areas to make ministry and other types of care possible) is wonderful. Tears came as we lifted off and the realization that we're here washed over me. Here in the wild, in the heartbeat of another world- that is still Your world- all the dreams that have yet words to explain...but the urge to see and know You as a God this big, this untamed, unsafe. You are the Lion of Judah. Lord captivate us by Your goodness, which isn't safe. It isn't nice and neat. It isn't 8 hours of sleep and a fresh pot of coffee every morning. It doesn't always smell good or feel clean and dry. It is risky, uncomfortable, offensive, undomesticated, and most certainly unpredictable. Teach us to follow You into all of these things, and not just what makes us comfortable.
Thank you that I don't care about my suitcase right now. This is what it is to be captivated by You: to have inconveniences or trials that barely even distract because the joy of being in Your presence overpowers- it outweighs these light and momentary afflictions. I ask for more, Lord! More encounters with You, which aren't always in the miraculous. They're in the trees, the instant coffee, the smiles, the songs, the joy."
The MAF airfield in Uganda- such a beautiful morning!