No Words To Say ‘Thank You’

“I do it myself!” A phrase so many beautiful, chubby toddlers have insisted to their moms and dads. Often we want them to hurry up and “do it yourself!” but typically we need them to do it faster and honestly, we’re just more capable. Here’s the problem I’ve been facing, sometimes I just can’t “do it myself!”
I have mentioned that I am independent, Type A, and many other good or bad things, depending on your perspective. However, there have been countless times in my life in Congo that I am simply incapable of solving a problem. I may know the answer but I don’t know the first thing about finding the parts I need or knowing whether or not the parts are even in country. God has not been just breaking down my walls of self-proclaimed independence, he has been lobbing grenades at them.
It is painfully hard to realize that I am not in control of my situations. When our car broke down on the side of the road outside the city, our only weapons of attack were a cell phone and prayer. After a short period of time, bonding with some boys watching us sweat alongside the road, and several
heaven sent friends, the boys and I got a ride home and Nick spent the next 4.5 hours with our friend Gaston and his “pit crew” well after it was dark fixing the car. Is there anything I can do or say to repay this generosity? No, there isn’t. It makes me squirm a little at receiving this act of love and fall on my knees because that is the only response I have.
When we moved here, “fresh off the boat,” a non-UMC missionary from Australia took it upon herself to visit us at the guesthouse where we were staying. Unhappy with our accommodations, she took us to see another guesthouse, invited us to her church and later fed us lunch. She has not stopped extending her hand in friendship, encouraging us and saving us over and over from our “we don’t know what to do!” situations. She seeks approval from God because there is nothing, we can do to repay this kind of radical love and hospitality.
IT IS SO HARD! I love what God is showing me through this kind of “I can’t do it myself” lifestyle. I pray that I take this lesson with me, knowing this is how I am to receive Christ’s gift of the cross. I can’t earn the love of God, salvation, or do anything to lose it (which is a good thing when I’m being a terrible).
The gifts that God gives us through this type of giving and receiving are countless. This is that fabulous time of year where we all look at our bank accounts (or tell ourselves that we should be responsible and look at our bank accounts) and calculate how much we want to spend on Christmas. There are so many family members and friends who you want to buy for, so many charitable causes that are worth contributing to…what about mission’s work?
{Shameless plug} What missionaries do is so amazing! It is much larger than you can imagine! People envision missionaries as “bringing Jesus to the downtrodden” but really it is about connecting the church through taking care of people, working with people in a community to grow in health, education, and sustainable jobs. It’s really amazing. Please think about giving, even a little bit, to making this continuing work a reality. God bless you this season my friends!

 

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Provers 3:5-6

Supporting us:

prayer please

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

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2 thoughts on “No Words To Say ‘Thank You’

  1. Thanks for everything your family is doing. I wish I could be there to help you. However at this age I would only be another problem. We love you keep up the good work.

    Like

  2. Thank you for all of your wonderful communications which help me feel more connected to you and your life there in the DR Congo. May God grant you the patience and continuing humor for all you face, and wisdom in your interactions.
    I thank God for your whole family. Blessings.

    Like

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