I have continued to struggle with an internal loneliness. We knew we’d miss our friends and family but the ache is deeper than I imagined it would be.
We often get asked, “What is the hardest part about living in Haiti?” Our answer has nothing to do with heat, illness…which we’ve battled more frequently here than ever before, loss of conveniences, or daily life with mosquitos and the wearing of eau de Off. It’s not the tarantulas that like to make their way into our bathroom or the hours it takes to drive 20 miles. It isn’t even the poverty we face around every corner and the pain of witnessing the heart ache it causes. These things are hard but not what is hardest.
It isn’t about what we’ve left behind but has everything to do with those we’ve left behind. Moving away results in change in relationships…it’s inevitable. Every missionary I know feels this way and has probably written these words, yet on our own we must work through what that means for us. We grieve the daily interaction of those we love, the births we miss, big events in the lives of people we love…we struggle with the guilt of not being around for family celebrations or being available to our aging parents. It hurts to know we aren’t there to love our family and friends through difficult times.
In the book of Luke, Jesus clearly speaks to the cost involved in following Him. As I’ve pondered the cost of following Jesus, the cost of being a Disciple…a Disciple maker, I’ve had to consider whether God can be enough when we choose to follow Him. There is so much loss involved.
God is asking me, “Am I enough?” Is He? Is He enough for me? Do I trust Him to enough for my family and friends? I don’t know about you but I wrestle with this…daily.
I want Him to be enough…to be sufficient…to delight in His goodness. I want my thirst to be quenched, my hunger satisfied so that I am useful to Him here…where He has placed us.
Because He is gracious as we grow in Him ever so slowly, He has begun to build community around us. He knows our needs and meets us right where we’re at. We truly have no doubts that we have people here we can call on in crisis, who notice when we’re missing and reach out to us when were ill. They do not replace those back home for any of us, BUT He is, once again, enlarging our family. We trust that He is doing the same for those we’ve left behind, bringing new people to minister, comfort and breathe words of life into one another.
He expects everything…He requires everything…not just from us but from those who have encouraged and allowed us to go. God continues to steadily change the trajectory of our lives as well as those who’ve joined us in this journey…we will never been the same and for that I am grateful. Along the way I hope to come to a place where I can fully say “my heart belongs to Him alone and He is enough”!