4.11.08

Training?

It's one of those mornings.

This morning I ran over with the kids to pick up the laundry that I forgot about last night. By the time I remembered the doors to the laundry room were locked. This has happened hundreds of times in the 3 years we have lived here and nothing has come of it. I guess we've just been lucky.

This morning a load and a half of laundry was gone, and my laundry cart. Random stuff was stolen, bed liners, baby clothes, the GH's dress pants. It makes no sense to me.

The greatest tragedies are the baby blanket my great grandmother crocheted for me 32 years ago and I've had ever since. She passed away 4 years ago. It was a comfort to have that around, to cover my children with it, to imagine her with hers. It's gone now.

And the Boy's new pants that we got for his birthday. Those can be replaced, but he is upset.

It's a small thing really. We are needing to get rid of the stuff we have accumulated over several years. We aren't taking it with us when we go to Thailand.

They are only things. And yet I am sad.

And I feel a little bit childish because of it.

Remember Chala? He's still taking care of orphaned refugee kids. He moved them to the new district where they can get papers. He's got bigger problems than I. His wife left him. His in-laws decided he wasn't taking care of them well enough, which is his cultural obligation when he married her, and so they left, and she went with them as is custom. And still he struggles to keep these kids fed and clothed and healthy.

What is a bit of missing laundry compared with that?

I must get stronger, hold to things more lightly, remember what is really important.

There were bugs in the oatmeal when I went to make breakfast after the laundry. And as I washed them out, (Yeah, we ate it anyway) changing the water over and over again I wondered how often I'll find myself doing this in 6 months or so. Washing bugs out of grain is almost normal for me now, I've done it enough. What else am I going to have to get used to?

I feel the stretching, the pulling of these inconveniences as I try to keep them in perspective, try to remember that they aren't that big of a deal. I fight with myself, the desire to just stay and be comfortable warring with the knowledge that it isn't about me. There are bigger more important things at stake, a story to be told and written into the lives of the least of these, children that the world has forgotten. There is a chance here to be a player in an on going epic, the story of kingdom come, on earth as it is in heaven. If I can just stop thinking about myself and my own comfort. If I can just raise my eyes to the bigger picture.

Today it feels like a thousand tiny griefs stabbing at me as I sort and sift through things, stuff, and know I can't take them with me. And yet, I know that once they are gone I will be more free.

I need to learn to travel light.

******************
Donations can still be made to help Chala, and the others like him. The kids need mosquito nets. There is malaria in their new district. And uniforms so they can go to school.

Go here to learn how.

Also, the store is up. Sort of. There is more stock to list and I'll be doing that this week. I had to figure out how to use an FTP client because I was having trouble publishing everything. I'm trying to figure out a more efficient way to do it. Go ahead and share if you have ideas.

3 comments:

  1. I'll be praying for you!
    I've been struggling with the same "battles" mentally lately, and I'm not even going anywhere.
    I keep reminding myself that God gives us strength for what we face TODAY, and we're supposed to give the worries about TOMORROW to Him.

    ReplyDelete
  2. From the other side of the "great leap into living un-materialistically" here in Africa, I can tell you the struggle doesnt disappear, even after you sell most of your belongings, including your house, give away your dog, and move to the other side of the world. I wash bugs out of my rice everyday , and i freeze all my flour and sugar and grains before using them to kill whatever is too small to sift out. Doesnt bother me much. I buy meat in the open market with flies swarming and so far have lived to tell about it. But i still miss some "things". I just want some cheese that doesnt taste like mothballs! I miss exercise equipment when its too hot to go outside, i want a dryer when the outside world smells like smoke, dust and singed goat hair (like right now). I miss our hold house somedays, it was like a showhome and gorgeous with comfy furniture,etc. Now we live in a big concrete house with bare walls and floors, and sometimes i want to spend money to make them prettier. I want to hold onto things too, especially what little we brought with us. It has gotten easier to hold things lightly, but sometimes i still feel i have an iron grasp on sometimes that i need to release. i find i get true perspective at night when i go sit outside under my tree with our neighbors, who squat on land in a hut and have no running water or income. funny how that has a way of showing you what is important. I support you in your journey to let go of the material to gain what is truly good for the soul. Not easy, but a wonderful trip.

    Love Chantelle

    ReplyDelete
  3. From the other side of the "great leap into living un-materialistically" here in Africa, I can tell you the struggle doesnt disappear, even after you sell most of your belongings, including your house, give away your dog, and move to the other side of the world. I wash bugs out of my rice everyday , and i freeze all my flour and sugar and grains before using them to kill whatever is too small to sift out. Doesnt bother me much. I buy meat in the open market with flies swarming and so far have lived to tell about it. But i still miss some "things". I just want some cheese that doesnt taste like mothballs! I miss exercise equipment when its too hot to go outside, i want a dryer when the outside world smells like smoke, dust and singed goat hair (like right now). I miss our hold house somedays, it was like a showhome and gorgeous with comfy furniture,etc. Now we live in a big concrete house with bare walls and floors, and sometimes i want to spend money to make them prettier. I want to hold onto things too, especially what little we brought with us. It has gotten easier to hold things lightly, but sometimes i still feel i have an iron grasp on sometimes that i need to release. i find i get true perspective at night when i go sit outside under my tree with our neighbors, who squat on land in a hut and have no running water or income. funny how that has a way of showing you what is important. I support you in your journey to let go of the material to gain what is truly good for the soul. Not easy, but a wonderful trip.

    Love Chantelle

    ReplyDelete

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