Sometimes, the best way to gain a clear focus is to go back and trace your steps. That's what I've just been doing. I've been reading over my blogs from the last year. It's a really interesting thing to do. It's especially interesting looking at when I wrote things. I think that I can safely say that the journey that I'm tracking right now started just one week shy of a year ago. (I've rewritten that sentence four times and I'm still not sure if that's how I would say it, but you get the gist of it!) On February 26th, 2006 (technically, February 27th, by the time I actually got it posted), I wrote this blog: Invisible Children. This was my first night going to Refuge. I remember that night. I remember us watching the video. I remember Brian leading us in "You Said" and thinking what a perfect song that was to end on. I remember wanting to do something. I also remember the feeling that I couldnâ€™t do all the things that I would want to do because of my current circumstances. I remember feeling called to do more than what I wrote about, but afraid to talk about it, because then it would be real. I remember resigning myself to the fact that I would have to simply raise awareness. It broke my heart to see the kids in Uganda. I really did just want to pick them all up and hold them. It's the way I feel about all kids. They were meant to be loved. They were meant to be protected. They were meant to be nurtured.
This weekend at the conference, they asked us to examine ourselves and find what our passion is. Mine came to me quickly: children. It always has been. I am happiest when I'm around them. The Lord speaks to me through them and they feed my soul in a way that nothing else can. I have tried to see music as my passion for a long time, but I know now that it is more of an outlet than a passion. I enjoy making music. I love being with children.
Then I found this post from September: singin' in the rain. The second half of this post was a VERY short version of all the coincidental things that happened that week. One of the things that I left out, once again, because I would then have to think about it, was something that my boss said to me the week before. She looked at me when we were in the stockroom and just stared at me for a minute. She then said something that completely shocked me. She said, "You've been thinking about missions, haven't you? I know you have. I can just tell." I had not breathed a word to anyone regarding it until then. It had been bumping around in my heart, trying to get out, but I had never let it out until then. So, that weekend, when Drew preached on Gen 12:1-10, "A Vision Worth Dying For", speaking about Abraham's call and our call as well, to leave country and our father's house, I almost couldn't handle it. That, coupled with the passages in "My Utmost For His Highest" that week almost sent me over the edge. I didn't know what to do with it all. (It didn't help that my attitude at that time was not exactly one that I am proud of.) I have been processing it all since then and have talked to a few select people about it since.
And now, here I am. Still more confused than ever. It's been a year and I still don't know what this call means. The "Next Step Lunch" that I went to yesterday at the end of Fusion was with the Rafiki Foundation, which is an organization that has set up "villages" in ten countries in Africa: Ghana, Kenya, Malawi, Nigeria, Uganda, and Zambia, with villages still under construction in Ethiopia, Liberia, Rwanda, and Tanzania. Right now, they take in teenagers and orphans under 6. Their mission is to educate and equip the next generation so that they can be leaders in their communities. It was a really interesting presentation, but I don't think it's an organization that I would necessarily be able to work with. Mostly, because what they need are teachers with certification. I, obviously, am not a certified teacher. So, that's that.
There is almost too much for me to process right now. I guess I felt that if I shared it, rather than keeping it inside like I normally do, maybe I can find some clarity. Right now, I'm just scared looking at all that I've just typed, knowing that I've just bared my soul. That's a new step for me. Maybe it's the first of many...