Friday, May 20, 2016

Sometimes I Don't Like it Here

This is not a one way street. The cars to my left were impatient
to get out and took over the left hand side of the street.

When Kevin and I began our journey into ministry, we both felt led as individuals, but also felt told to go as a family. We were both interviewed separately, as well as together to determine if we both felt called to this path. We began training together, attending orientation and many other classes together. We did ministry partnership together and even did language school together. We have been on this journey together, every step of the way, each of us called on this path.

But from the moment we landed in Africa, our paths have split. Kevin goes into the hangar each day, working on what he was called to do, what we were called to do as a team. He repairs planes that take vaccines to villages, he flies doctors into remote places that have no names, he walks alongside other pastors as they go from village to village, and he talks to our national workers daily and is eagerly learning their cultures and languages (he can honestly greet you in over 5 languages now). But what do I do each day? What do I contribute to our “team”?

I have said over and over that our life is very much a roller coaster here – ups and downs, twists and loops, fast moments and slow moments. And sometimes I don’t like it here. I do not feel very valued here when I have my low days. It is hard to remind myself that God has personally called me here when street children bang on my car demanding I give them something; when a police officer pulls me over for having my “blinker on too long” and demands I give them all the money in my wallet; when I have to spend 20 minutes arguing with the person trying to cheat me out of my phone units when I know exactly how much each unit costs; when a vendor stands at my car window while waiting in traffic trying to get me to buy something I don’t need and tries to tell me I must give him money to eat when I buy nothing; when a bus cuts me off in traffic causing me to swerve into another lane and each person in the bus proceeds to stick their head out the window and point and laugh at me while I am now stuck behind them in traffic for 20 minutes and the driver continuously taunts me by sticking his hands out to point at me and clap; when someone only sees me as an easy means for money and not for my value; when I make my daughter scream while removing mango fly larva from under her skin. Yes, sometimes I absolutely do not like it here. It is hard. I do not get to see the things that Kevin sees daily. Where he is told how much he means to someone, where a man cries because Kevin gives him his first Bible written in French/Lingala, where a child’s life is saved because of an emergency medical flight my husband does, where people sing and clap with joy when the plane flies in, where an entire village receives a much needed measles vaccine during an outbreak, where crowds of people wait to talk to the pilot who makes the world different and better for them.

But some days are good days. Some days I make an impact on the hearts of people placed in my path. Some days I get to teach my house helper a new skill that she can use to make herself even more valuable to the expat community and better provide for her family. Some days my value towards our ministry goes beyond supporting my husband in his role, beyond ministry to my children, and goes towards our team mates. Sometimes my impact is supporting other spouses in their roles with physical, mental/emotional, and spiritual support. These are the days I cherish and I see where God has placed me in the paths of others to help them through their low days. So it is perfectly okay to throw in the towel at the end of the day and declare that you “don’t like it here” and confess your weaknesses. It is okay to have bad days. As long as in the end I still see God at work around me and I don’t limit what He does. It is on these days that I am reminded of my calling.


  1. Thanks Tasha for this great piece.I'm from Uganda and met Kevin on my way to DRC some time last year.We both had our luggage left in Nairobi and since I didn't have a local number,he kept checking in on whether I received my luggage.

    Did I mention that he also dropped me at my hotel?

    I'm glad that you both responded to God's call and are obeying his commands.Your reward is in heaven.God bless you

  2. Tasha what a blessing you are I know your are a diamond in God's eye please know we haven't forgotten you all I enjoy keeping up with you all!God bless and keep you safe!

  3. Wow. I'm sorry about the trials you face daily. My thoughts and prayers are with you and the family. You guys ROCK and I know everyone there in Africa has been blessed with your presence and guidance. Continue the path because your reward is coming, and God will see to it. Stay safe.