Life has gotten extremely busy all at once! I’m on Week 3 now of an LCC (Language and Culture Coaching) course I’m taking. I love it so much! It’s so wonderful to be back in the world of linguistics with other like-minded people to learn about something I’ve grown very interested in, coaching. Not only is it useful for my long-term goal of being an LCC on the field, but I’m taking it for credit, which fulfills a requirement to keep my teaching credentials current. The expectation up to this point has been that I would get a Visa by teaching ESL.
All of this is on the table right now as many things have changed in the world, including ministry plans. There is so much that I don’t know and can’t answer, but what I do know is that I won’t be partnering with the organization I was intending. That decision was carefully made with SAMS’ guidance after a series of red flags and some changes in the original expectations.
On the one hand, the decision frees me and opens me to many possibilities out there, which I am currently discerning with SAMS and invite you to discern with me. I solicit your prayers and welcome your input if you receive something. On the other, it places new decisions before me. I get excited about the possibilities even though there is a sense of loss with this step.
I am amazed at the Lord’s timing for multiple reasons. It couldn’t have fallen at a better time—when my family is grieving, when travel is restricted, when (at least for a short while) there was extra time to devote to prayer, worship, and time in the Word.
I'm especially grateful for the last reason because somehow despite the fog and turbulence of life these past few months, some things have actually become clear. First, I have confidence that I’m exactly where God wants me for this season: here with family. Second, He’s helped me realize that location isn’t something to get too set on. I’m still very open to SE Asia and know of at least one possibility that interests me, but I have accepted that the plan will look differently than I expected and prepared for, though I’m still discerning to what degree.
I’m incredibly grateful to continue to prepare by testing the waters as an LCC. I have even gotten to practice on a fellow SAMS missionary living in Ethiopia. While it’s a challenge since I've never even been there or learned the language, I love it and am so very grateful to have a context while I take the course. (If you're wondering how I could possibly help someone learn a language I don't speak, it's a challenge! But it's about helping with the overall process and locating resources, not instruction.)
Both in getting back to the language/culture world along with having daily devotions with my family--something new for us--I’ve found myself thanking God for giving me the desires of my heart. It’s just like Him to bring sweet things during a time of stress, loss, and uncertainty.
I realize that I am not alone when it comes to loss and unpredictability in this season. While we are all experiencing uncertainty right now and could be tempted to dwell on dashed hopes and frustration of the unknown, I’d like to challenge each of us--me first--to find peace and joy in the knowledge that God has a plan and is able to orchestrate events in such astonishing, unexpected ways that we could never have anticipated or matched what He is doing to accomplish such great purposes for His kingdom. Let us walk by faith and not by sight.
Never doubt God's mighty power to work in you and accomplish all this. He will achieve infinitely more than your greatest request, your most unbelievable dream, and exceed your wildest imagination! He will outdo them all, for his miraculous power constantly energizes you. Now we offer up to God all the glorious praise that rises from every church in every generation through Jesus Christ--and all that will yet be manifest through time and eternity. Amen! Ephesians 3:20-21 TPT