Friday, July 11, 2014

Hope for my soul

Three days ago I returned home from teaching English and my third mission trip to the Czech Republic.
I posted some great pictures.
What do I say when asked how it went, certainly there is an expectation to hear about all the marvelous things that we did and saw.  It's similar to someone asking how your day went...
Do they really want to know, is it helpful?
Yesterday I had a great opportunity to talk with a friend from church that had gone on the same type trip 5 years ago.
She said it had been hard.
It was out of her comfort zone, she said.
The expectation to continuously reach out to people that do not speak English is daunting.
However, she said, "Going to Ethiopia where I washed desks, walls and played with children and washed desks some more...
...that was much easier."
Every year the church in Celakovice has potluck for us and I have tried to help with the dish washing and cleaning up afterwards and they always get upset with me because I am a guest.
But it's easier than trying to talk with them!
So why do I go?
There are a few people who have limited conversation abilities that I can share ideas or exchange personal experiences with that I am able to connect with.  I am able to encourage these people that God is real and Jesus really did come to save them and the church is a good place to continue in community.
But it isn't easy.
"Everything that happens fits into a pattern for good, but that pattern and that purpose is to shape us to the likeness of His Son."  Elisabeth Elliot
"For whom He foreknew, He also predestined to be conformed to the image of His Son."
Romans 8:29
The first year I went was all learning and observing and letting the experienced ones take the lead.
Last year I felt the leading and emboldening and peace of the Holy Spirit at every turn.
This year was a battle from the moment I stepped off the plane and threw up from motion sickness until we arrived home and our baggage didn't.
Everything and nothing went right.
It was all walking by faith in the one who is the author and finisher of my faith. (2 Cor.5:7) An anchor of Hope for my soul (Hebrews 6:18)
I had impressed upon my heart that verse from Isaiah 6:8, "Here am I send me" when the urgent call for English camp teachers went out in the spring. And I can say with confidence that He did a great work through me but it wasn't easy.  There isn't another English camp for two years.  So we will continue to pray for those wonderful Czech people and wait and see with confident expectation that God will direct our steps.

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