Take No Prisoners

I am a pretty tough, no-nonsense woman and my independent, type-A personality doesn’t often run and hide from a challenge. For the Spirit God gave us does not make us timid, but gives us power, love and self-discipline. 2 Timothy 1:7

I must admit that during our time in DR Congo I have felt a bit like a captive. We see beautiful African Grey parrots in tiny little cages, canaries, doves, and other birds being sold alongside the roads in our city. I have allowed myself to become a little like these birds but not anymore! Last week, after some pep talks and prodding, Nick insisted I get behind the wheel of our beast of a manual vehicle, TINA, the Land Cruiser.

tina
Meet TINA

I love to drive, l-o-v-e it! I have missed the freedom of being behind the wheel and knowing that I couldn’t drive even if I wanted to, made me feel like one of those caged birds. I also allowed that fear of driving on the unpredictable, pot-hole laden, congested streets to turn into tiny seeds of bitterness. It is difficult to never be alone. Even for an extrovert, knowing that I couldn’t go anywhere without a driver, escort, or my wonderful husband, was really suffocating.

I would not go as far as to say I’m a “free bird” now, but I have driven a half a dozen times in the last week. My heart has been in my throat when I have to stop and drop Tina back into 1st gear, but as soon as we hit 3rd gear I feel like we could fly- Chitty Chitty Bang Bang style!

chitty chitty with renee

When we arrive safely at our destination I so appreciate the looks of amused support from our guards or the gardener at the school. The encouragement from the boys has been hilarious. After a somewhat difficult time getting into the parking lot at school Porter said, “I liked the bouncing Mom,” followed by Corbin laughing, “I hit my face on the seat!”,

This is not my first time being taught how to drive a stick-shift. Nick has attempted this feat more than once and there are some sad manuals that, if they are still on the road after so many years, still shudder at the thought of me grinding their gears.

The challenges before all Christians are many. Every time we faithfully answer a call to serve God we battle fear, self-doubt, and inadequacies. The devil wants us to admit defeat. Saying “I just can’t do it” is so much easier than doing the hard things that Christ calls us to do. Do it anyway. Take no prisoners- in His name!

renee driving- funky

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Supporting us:

prayer please

umcmission.org
Renee’s advance #3022491
Nick’s advance #3022490

Nick and Renee Shaw
C/O United Methodist New Life Center
PO Box 20219
Kitwe, Zambia

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3 thoughts on “Take No Prisoners

  1. I love your stories. I pass them on to my congregations and many continue to pray for your success and your calling. We miss seeing you but know you are all working for a greater good. Keep up the stories and the faith, you are never alone. May God Bless you all, the Griffins.

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  2. Renee,proud of you taking to the road. Love to hear all about your exploits! Prayers sent up every night, that your’re all safe. Some day you and Nick should write a book about all you’re experiences..trials and triumphs. What a wonderful experience you’re sharing with the boys. God bless you all.

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    1. Thanks Mary,
      We have joked many times about how we should someday write a book… and who knows what will happen. We do know that after 4.5 days without power at our house we literally jumped for joy when it came back on this evening. For the first time since Monday evening we are able to sit at our kitchen table with the lights on in the evening 🙂 Live is clearly hard here, but it also has been very good. Thank you for the prayers and notes of support.
      Blessings

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