Instead, it is now the August fourteenth and my painter has not finished painting the house so the "For Sale" sign is not even planted into the ground. I checked my support account and I have $0 in committed monthly support from 0 supporters. All this would be OK except for the fact that I have now spoken and handed out support cards at our home church where we attend, the church I served on staff at for 4 years, the church I grew up at, and a couple others where I had friends. After tapping my family, my friends, and my connections the result has been a goose egg.
This is not a pity party! Instead it is a definitive answer to the question I hear most these days, "Do you really think it's God's will for you to go to Swaziland?" The answer is an affirmative "YES! We are going!" Although the sale of my house is not in sync with my time line, I still say, "Yes, we are going." Although my friends have decided so far not to be our monthly support, I still say, "Yes, we are going." Even though all my personal connections have come up nil, I still say, "Yes, we are going."
When I hear the question, "Do you really think it's God's will for you to go to Swaziland?" it feels like my friends have become my foes. As they are asking it I am hearing, "Why can't you just be good Americans, with good jobs, and a good retirement?" As they are asking it and I have no house contract to show them, and no monthly support commitment to defend my radical calling to uproot my wife and children to the take care of third world orphans, I feel their condescending victory over my refusal to "just be normal."
Psalm 13The Lord gave me this passage today as an assurance to His calling. Although the nay-sayers are more numerous than the supporters. Although the people who want us to "just be normal" are pleased by our seeming to fail in the time line we both felt God led us to. Although it seems to those looking with only physical eyes that God hidden his face, forgetting his commission to us in this endeavor we look with different eyes, we listen with different ears, we touch with different hands, and we trust with a different faith.
How long, O LORD? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
How long must I take counsel in my soul
and have sorrow in my heart all the day?
How long shall my enemy be exalted over me?
Consider and answer me, O LORD my God;
light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death,
lest my enemy say, "I have prevailed over him,"
lest my foes rejoice because I am shaken.
But I have trusted in your steadfast love;
my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.
I will sing to the LORD,
because he has dealt bountifully with me.
I trust in God's provisional love for our family, and for the Swazi orphans. I rejoice in God's saving us from the commodity of trudging forward as merely good employees. I sing because I have been filled with a bounty of more purpose and vision than I dreamed to be worthy of. I rely on the faith that caused Abraham to say, "WE will come back to you," as he departed in solidarity to the task of sacrificing his son.
Abraham walked his path in fraternity with God alone. We unlike him, walk this in fellowship with our friends, our family, and our church connections. Abraham did not hear the repeated jeers of his nay sayers, "Do you really think God meant kill Isaac? Maybe God was speaking figuratively." We walk seeking the unity of partnership between us who will go, and those being called by God to send.
We move forward with the same faith that caused Abraham to have "reasoned that God could raise the dead" and caused David to sing for the Lord's goodness. It is God's will for us to be ministering to the orphans in Nsoko Swaziland. As Paul said, "We live by faith, not by sight." We proceed by the promises of God knowing that we will be moving in Swaziland in January.