I was talking to a man on the phone the other day about my thoughts for the 501c3 I want to start…I have been trying to nail down the concept and information, and was talking about grants and start up costs with him.
He was very intrigued by my idea and then was astounded when I said I had been to Ethiopia 5 times already. Then I was sort of astounded. Really?!! I have been there 5 times? To Ethiopia?! Wow!
Usually when I tell people that I would live there if I could, I get the blank stare. And then the ‘oh really?..... Well that’s NOT for me!” And I giggle.
Today someone said to me that they couldn’t believe I didn’t already live there. And to be completely honest with you, I really can’t believe it myself.
In a conversation with another friend I said to her “WHY?! Why do we want to live in a third world country? Where there are parasites, inflation is CRAZY, there aren’t freedoms there like here, electricity and water are unpredictable and we would be the major minority?” She said…” Cause we’re crazy”
Are we crazy?
But maybe not?
You know what else is there? Beauty. Love. Joy in the little things. Family connections that defy blood relations. There is a pride there that is …. different than what American’s feel which is more entitlement and conceit. The poor help each other.
When you talk to a lot of Ethiopians they would tell you that they may want to visit here, but not live here in America. I think that speaks volumes.
I was talking to my brother T the other day and he asked me why Ethiopia was cursed and so poor? Why had God forsaken them? I didn’t have answer to his perception… all I could give him was mine. That there is so much more beauty and strength in Ethioipa than anywhere I have ever seen. That I have heard from more than one person that they FOUND God in Ethiopia… not that He had forsaken it. I don’t know why there seems to be so much more pain and suffering there than anywhere else? I don’t know why there is such abject poverty. Not that God causes these things to happen… but perhaps in some grand scheme it’s to help people like me and others to realize that there is so much more to life than the car we drive, or the house we live in, or the clothes we wear? Perhaps it’s to help us catch a glimpse of what God wants us to see in others? Perhaps He wants His people to remember to think outside of themselves and at each other?
Logistically I am still here because of E’s meds. Right now they are not available in Ethiopia in the formula we need them to be in, so we stay here. His life is more important than any soul desire I have to live in his country of birth.
When we have A home and stable on meds… and get E on a formula we can travel with we will re-evaluate. I learn more and more that I want my children to know their country, know the beauty, know the hardships and the strength.
Until then, I will pray for those that I miss. I will cry my tears of longing. I will cry out to our Lord for guidance and strength. I will continue to ask for perseverance and wisdom in how to follow Him and serve His people. Right now, clearly my place is here.
In the future? …. As my brother A says… God Knows.