I remember as a kid my first time using a magnifying glass, My best friend had received one as a gift and brought it outside to show me. We began to experiment to see if we could fry ants or start fires. After all, isn’t that what boys do?
I don’t know know how many ants were killed in the name of science that day but the magnifying glass reminds me of my life as a missionary. Everything is more concentrated here. The normal flow of life, especially emotions, seems to be doubled.
I have always been an emotional person on the inside. If people only could hear my “inner dialogue” they may be surprised on how emotional I am. On the outside I usually don’t show much emotion. Yes, I am an introvert. Surprising to a lot of my friends!
What I have found as a missionary is that simple little things that normally wouldn’t get under my skin now are bugging me. The other day we were in Kigali (capitol city) and something set me off. Normally I can process things slowly… but the missionary magnifying glass proved too strong and I almost came unglued. I am becoming an emotional wimp. I very much dislike this aspect of my life right now. I am hoping that it is a “season” of life that will become easier to cope with after some time.
The more people I talk to that have been overseas missionaries the more I hear similar stories. It’s good to know you aren’t alone with your “issues”, isn’t it? What I have learned is that whatever weaknesses I brought with me to Rwanda are now doubled in power. I was impatient for the first 46 years of my life. Now guess what the past 4 years I have become even more impatient.
God take my brokenness and use it for your glory. I have become more reliant on God because of this. I no longer think that “I have it together” in some areas of my life….all is broken. I am in need of God’s grace in EVERY area of my life. Prayer time, devotions, Bible reading and other disciplines become even more important as I learn what it means to have less of me and more of God in my life.
2 Corinthians 12:9 Each time he said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.