Craig and I were talking recently about how amazing it is how God uses people in each other's lives.
Before Craig and I met, I was looking into going to Africa to teach. I have always been drawn to the idea of working in Africa. But before I could get very far with those plans, Craig swept me off my feet and we got married, moved to Utah, and got lost in the humdrum of everyday life.
After we'd been in Utah a couple of years, Craig met a guy at work named Chris, who had "started a school in Africa." Craig would come home and talk about this guy and his work all the time, and I finally had to tell him that I didn't want to hear it because as amazing as the things this guy was accomplishing were, it depressed me to think that I wasn't doing the things I had wanted to do. Don't get me wrong, my marriage and son are the most phenomenal blessings ever in the whole wide world, but there are still other things I want to do in life. (I think moms are way too often made to feel guilty for pursuing their own dreams and agendas. But that's a whole other topic.)
Fast forward a little and I realized I was wasting my time being bitter, and I instead needed to take action. Instead of telling Craig to stop telling me about Chris and The Senase Project, I started asking more questions. I told Craig that he should tell Chris that I was happy to help him and the organization in any way, just to let me know what I could do. That lead to Chris taking a huge leap of faith in me, and allowing me to start working with the Sponsor a Student portion of the organization. This meant that I would coordinate sponsor/student contact, try to hook students up with sponsors, and so on. I was so excited to be involved, and so amazed that this guy I barely knew was trusting me.
I told Chris, though, that I would love to help the organization in my capacity as a teacher if an opportunity ever came up. Well sure enough, one did! Not too long after I started helping with The Senase Project, Chris asked if I could help write some supplemental materials to go with the curriculum the school uses. The teachers there don't have many resources, and being a small nonprofit, we don't have the budget to purchase fancy, ready-made curricular materials. That's where I come in!
Now I'm not sure I totally know what I'm doing, but I knew that I definitely couldn't help unless I met these teachers and students, and saw their school in action. I feel like I won't know what it is they need from me unless I experience it first-hand. And so I'm going to Ghana next week. I have no clue what to expect, really. I've travelled internationally before, but never to Africa or a tiny, remote village. I'm a planner, so the unknowns have been hard!
But I'm trying to focus on what I do know. God doesn't do coincidences; there's a reason he moved us to Utah, and a reason he allowed Craig and Chris to connect. There's a reason I've always felt called to serve in Africa, and a reason I'm feeling compelled to do something different with my life right now. The Lord's timing is so perfect and it is beyond comforting to know that we have a Heavenly Father who has already laid out our paths, down to the last stepping stone. I really hope that I'm on the right track, because I know that if it's where the Lord wants me to be, then it's the right place to be. I guess we'll find out!
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