Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Wrestling

Bethany here. I know that most of the time we write about places we've visited or events in our family but every now and then I find it beneficial not only for myself but for you, our readers, to get a window into what is going on in our hearts. I don't have to tell you that living overseas in a very different culture and studying one of the most difficult languages in the world is challenging. But lately a new struggle has been going on in my mind and heart - a wrestling match if you will.
    I am the type of person who thrives when my life is organized and planned out, when I know what to expect, when I can make plans and prepare myself and my family for change, etc. Unfortunately I have none of that in Sudan. No matter how hard I try to organize and plan, life is always changing, plans change, weather changes, etc. Lately it's been harder for me than usual, especially since we are anticipating a move back to South Sudan in less than 3 months. Knowing our time in Khartoum is nearing a close, I've already felt myself withdrawing (though very unintentionally.) The difficult part for me is that I don't know what will come next for our family of five. All I know is that we will have a conference in Kenya in April and most likely pack up our Khartoum home and take our things to Nairobi. After that, we don't know for sure. It might work out as we hope and we can move to Melut in Upper Nile to teach at Gideon Theological College. We might end up at a different base. We might end up staying and teaching here in Khartoum. The hard thing is that we can not make any solid decisions at this point and it is almost driving me crazy.
     The other realization that has been hitting me hard is that wherever we move next in South Sudan will require us living in some sort of temporary housing for at least 5 months (a hut or tent) until our own house can be built. Unfortunately June is when the rainy season begins and that will make it extremely hard maybe even impossible to begin building during that season. So how does one homeschool and try to "settle" and make a "home" when you're living temporarily for a period like 6 months? How does a young American mother do this in a rural area of Sudan?
    These questions are daunting. I have to admit that as I've pondered these things, it's become quite overwhelming at times. But the Lord keeps drawing me back to His lap, reminding me that He called us here, called us to this unpredicatable, unplannable life. God knows me inside and out. He knows this is an inner struggle for me. Yet He will not give me more than I can handle and I believe He will settle our family exactly where He wants us.
    Will these next few months be challenging? Yes. Will this be a difficult year? Yes. What should I do about that? Get depressed? Quit? Complain? NO!!!!! Lord, I commit to follow you wherever you take us and however you want to make it happen. Please just give us the grace and strength and JOY we need to take each day at a time.

6 comments:

Megan said...

Oh, Bethany, I just felt your heart leap off of the computer screen as I read this! I have felt many of the things you are feeling now but the major difference is that I was never on the other side of the world in a new culture, away from all that was common and familiar to me. I can't imagine the abundance of faith and trust you are having to fight to hold onto...and I say "fight" because I also am a planner and organizer who likes to see the road ahead and I know that when the road isn't easily seen, it is easy for people with our personality types to take matters in our own hands and make a path ourselves. It's incredibly hard to wait on God and His leading, even though we know, we know, we KNOW it's always what's best for us. "I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord." Ps. 27:13-14

I am praying for you, you're mama's heart that you have and your desire to make a home for your family. With all of the places we've moved, that's always been my first priority as well...to make a home. I truly believe now, after moving 8 times in our only 8 1/2 years of marriage, God wired us this way and He delights in our desire to do that for our families. Praying that His road for you and your guys is made clear to you even sooner than you plan on but that your heart is strengthened in the journey as you wait on Him. And praying for joy in your hearts...for all of you...as you walk this path together. The Fader family is such a blessing to us, even though you're on the other side of the world. I love you so much, friend, and will be praying for you!!! Thank you for sharing your heart.

Anonymous said...

Praying for you as you wrestle! Love you! h

David said...

Just want to say thanks for this post. Its comforting to know that even more experienced servants of God have wrestlings within.

jimbobuganda said...

Bethany, thanks for sharing your thoughts. I love your resolve. Lean on HIM... He will never give up, and the stretching you will experience will grow you and your faith. God bless and keep you all in His Spirit. love, James Turner. PS. Hopefully see you in KHT before you go?!

Nate and Amy said...

I'm with you sister. Thanks for sharing your heart. I am very similar to you in the planning aspect and feeling almost exactly the same as we face a similar indefinite period of uncertainty and change. The prospect of being a young Western Mom with children in a small tukul is terrifying!!! I'm praying hard for you and me and our families. As I'm praying, the Lord brings to mind the phrase "grace in a tukul", "grace in a tukul". Lord, give Bethany and I your all sufficient grace-in-a-tukul if that is Your will. I love you dear and will continue to pray for strength for you to face each day with hope!

Faders said...

Thank you everyone for your very encouraging words. I'm so thankful for you. I know that when I'm honest with you and share that this life isn't easy, you understand and love me just the same and pray. Thank you!