Now don't get me wrong, I realize that in some parts of ministry when you deal with pain and suffering and other unacceptable realities where the word "fun" isn't something that would describe your time. I also realize that there is such a thing as taking a break from ministering to others in order to recharge yourself, like a retreat. What I am talking about is day to day life on the mission field and how many times I have put others' perceptions of how I live in fronts of God's. Also it has occurred to me that while suffering for Christ is a privilege whether it be bad conditions or persecution, when I'm not suffering I shouldn't feel shame. To be honest, the trip so far hasn't been physically challenging at all. My tent has stayed nicely packed in the bottom of my bag and, and while pooping in holes in the ground is different, I'm starting to think it's easier than the porcelain thrones we've designed in the West (that can be another blog though). It has been amazing how many times this year I have found myself feeling bad about not feeling bad instead of just enjoying the gifts and blessings that God has given me while I have them.
Would give you the shirt off her back...wait a minute.
Does pink look good on me? It feels a little small!
medicine and supplies to make wells for clean drinking water. One of my favorite things about him is that his ministry seems pretty simple. He loves the Lord, loves providing for people's needs, and loves going on off-roading adventures to places off the map. These people happen to live way off the map, have a lot of needs, and, in turn because of Mordegai, will one day love the Lord. Everything just fits. It's the type of ministry that I have been hungry to see for awhile. I got the opportunity to go out with him for three days and it was great to see
Mapping out the trip and figuring out how to go where there are no roads
him in his environment. It really didn't seem like it was his ministry workplace, but his ministry life place. The people weren't his projects but his friends, and he wasn't working for or over them but was working with them. This is a big difference that means a lot to me. It also creates a community that is empowered, loving, and self sufficient.
I think he has gotten some feedback about how looking like you are having too much fun on the field might be bad for support. Unfortunately this is a reality as marketability is such an important part of support raising and people suffering usually brings in more money than people enjoying what they have even if they are on the same level. While I could see why people might think this judging by the dirt biking video he showed me that night, it doesn't seem to faze him. He knows God knows his heart and that divine approval is enough for him.
This got me thinking if I wasn't the only one who sometimes felt shame for life not being that hard, especially on the field. I wonder if a lot of missionaries get burned out because they don't feel like they can have fun, or if others think they are not solemn or holy enough to be missionaries and that loving Christ and loving getting your truck muddy isn't enough reason go and serve. I've gotten over the thought that you need a degree, money, family/singleness, experience or anything else other than a love for Christ to be able to be used by God as a worker in any part of the world. What I am just now getting over is the fact that I shouldn't put too much stalk in what other people think about my
Enjoying some homemade palm wine with the locals
(hint: if you don't want a second cup don't finish the first)
ministry or what I am doing as long as I am a worker approved by God. I don't know what the next step of my life is going to be, but every day I feel like God is telling me more and more that it's going to be fun and it's going to be for the Kingdom. Drop the shame. Drop the fear of misconception. Pick up the awesome burden of Christ to concern myself with only him and what he has in store.
Can Missioaries have too much Fun?