We are all gifted and graced at different things. Said differently we can’t all be good at everything.
Well one of the things that I am not good at all is directions. The only sense of direction I have is to get lost. I also am not the best at telling my left from my right. Family and friends love to tease me about my ability to get lost even in a place where I have lived for years. Joe says that if I say to turn right then he turns left (that has only backfired on him a couple of times but still not consistently enough to change the thinking.) Needless to say I heavily rely on GPS and Joe to give me directions.
Well last week Joe was traveling in Swaziland with two couples that helped to build a church there and he needed the GPS. Which was fine, since while he was gone I stuck to places I knew how to get to…or so I thought.
I was driving home from church a place that I have driven and ridden to and from numerous times in the three years that we have lived here. But there is one spot where I always get confused. And sure enough I did on this occasion. I got off an exit too early. I knew my mistake as soon as I made it but didn’t think going in reverse on the highway was a good idea. I pulled up the GPS on my phone and put in our home address and started following the new directions home…or so I thought. For the first little bit as we were driving I had no idea where we were and so didn’t know we were heading in the wrong direction. Then the GPS on my phone kept shutting down on me. So I kept having to pull up the directions again and again. Well at some point in pulling up the directions I pushed 35 Street Name ROAD instead of STREET. Well unfortunately for me the Road version of my address is near the airport which is 45 minutes away from my house. I knew at some point that I was heading towards the airport but didn’t quite know how to fix it. So I went to the airport pulled over and figure out what was going on. Eventually I arrived home but not before going all the way around the city of Johannesburg to get there.
Now it is something to tease about. But at the time it was frustrating because I knew where I was going was wrong but I didn’t know what to do to fix it and the thing I relied on to point me in the right direction pointed me in the opposite direction.
There are lots of sermon illustrations and teachable moments in that experience. And I am sure I will use it as such. For now I am thankful that Joe (and the GPS) has returned home.
Life on the mission field is a lot like life in our passport country some days, other days it is not. But everyday we are thankful to be doing what we are doing where we are doing it, even when we get lost.
Other things happening in our lives and ministry:
My parents are with us for the next several weeks helping out with projects and spoiling Peter.
Next week we have around 80 leaders from all over the field joining us for a training on church planting.
Until Next time- If you let your toddler help with something once then he will forevermore and always want to help with said activity again.