Chapter Ten - First World Problems
February 10, 2014 - Gojo, Ethiopia
Taken just hours after I wrote in my journal.
Yesterday my husband boarded a plane for Africa with a team from our church. EAST Africa thousands of miles from the Ebola outbreak, but back to my story... He is taking the same trip that Christopher and I took with him in February. And as you can imagine this trip is stirring up memories from that trip. Memories that seem like a lifetime ago. Memories that continue to shape who I am and especially who I am in Christ.
The trip in February was hard. Just plain hard. And there is no getting around that fact. You cannot make 24 hours of travel time easy. You cannot make seeing things that you have never seen before not affect you. Like children who have less than nothing. Just because you are being obedient to what God called you to does not make the trip easy. It was hard. And, actually, that is okay. Easy is easy. But hard can be the difference between slipping into a life dedicated to nothing and a life that is dedicated to serving the Lord with all your might. Hard makes you strong.
As I think of the team headed over to serve, I remember those first few days. A transition from my cushy American life to something I had never encountered before. And in my weariness both physically and emotionally I struggled. Little things became big things that bothered me. Looking back, of course, I can say whole heartedly that it was worth it all. But that first morning in Gojo, Ethiopia I wasn't so sure...
February 10, 2014
1st Gojo Morning
This is the morning I lost it. Or should I say I am losing it. It is as if the first few days were just a wonderful vacation and I have woken up to reality. No sleep. No rest. But for me it is adjusting to the FWP [First World Problem] of not being able to flush toilet paper. The toilet paper ends up in a bin next to the toilet which is next to the tub where I am supposed to get clean. I asked Anthony if he could find something to cover the open bucket - which they remove each day - but I am sick over it. The bathroom floor is always wet, so I feel like I am dragging the potential for my upcoming stomach bug around the floor of the room.
The tears have come, again. I cling to the words of Tana H. (who had months earlier taken her first missions trip to Romania) "It will get better." That it will feel like I want to get on the first plane back home, but in a couple days it will get better. She persevered and so can I. My middle name is perseverance, right?
At least the coffee is good.
Pray for me.
I don't think I care enough about these people to do this.
And Anthony says it is prepping me for the widows' homes.
I can't feel organized. Everything is in our large duffel bags which can't be spread out.
I am a wimp, right?
I look forward to re-reading this post and thinking "IT WAS WORTH IT ALL."
Raw words and raw emotions. But it helps me to pray for the team who will be encountering their 1st day in Gojo on Saturday. I know it won't be easy for them.
But it will be worth it all.
For more of my thoughts on my trip to Ethiopia and Uganda visit here.