Monday, April 21, 2008

Moved in

So we're finally getting settled into our new place. The house is so . . . nice. I've been working on it non-stop but am finally beginning to realize that there is no end to the stuff that needs to be done. Maybe it's time to let up a little.

I keep wondering why God gave this house to us. For the first time we have a yard for the kids to play in, a garage to store stuff, a fireplace (two of them!), a driveway (where your newspaper sits waiting for you instead of getting swiped by neighbors in the next unit), and a roomy kitchen (where I don't have to use the pull-out cutting board as counter space). Recently I realized that I've been working so hard because I felt like I had to deserve to be here. Which is dumb because no matter how hard I work, I would always be able to think of other people who deserve this house more than me. There must be some other reason why we're here.

If you'd asked me back in college where I thought I'd be living at age 39, I would have said a thatched hut somewhere on the missions field. When I started dating my husband, he asked me if I'd mind apartment living the rest of my life since that's all he'd be able to afford with a career in the ministry. I figured it was a step up from a thatched hut, so no problem. I was fairly content with apartment living until the third kid came along and I couldn't walk three steps in our apartment without bumping into something. (Mysterious bruises routinely appeared on my legs that I never remembered getting.) I wanted to stay content, though, because if I couldn't hack the situation that might mean I couldn't hack Africa or China or some place God might call us to someday.

I guess I'm worried that the reason God gave us this nice house and the reason I'm enjoying it so much is that he's telling me I'm not cut out for the rough stuff of missionary life. Yet at one time I thought he had called me to be a missionary. Was I mistaken?

A gay friend of mine observed, "Maybe God wants you to be a missionary here. I know of so many conservative Christians who would much rather minister in Cambodia than to homosexuals right here in the States." I wonder if he may be right. I have the tendency to think that anything I enjoy doing couldn't be God's real calling for me. I always imagine that his real calling for me would be something distasteful.