Archives for the month of: April, 2013

The hardest part about my mission trip to Ghana was coming home. Not just coming home…being home. That first few weeks I was an emotional wreck.

ghana church in sing

My plane landed in the States on a Tuesday afternoon over spring break. My youngest didn’t have school. My oldest didn’t have his homeschool enrichment program to go to. Church was canceled that Wednesday and Sunday due to crazy snow. So aside from my own family…I didn’t see anyone for 5 or 6 days.

I needed the down time and I was grateful for it. But I didn’t realize how cocooned I had been from the rest of my world…from my friends. Monday morning “back to life” was a shock.

ghana clinic in sawla

I got my youngest where he needed to go and was walking with my oldest into the front door of the enrichment program. He went left to go to class and I kept walking right out the back door. By the time I reached it I was in tears.

So what happened that was so traumatic between the front door and the back door?

Questions.

I didn’t know how to sum things up. I didn’t know how to answer honestly. And I didn’t know that I didn’t know. So it took me by surprise. And it was overwhelming.

ghana learning to play the drums

I’ve since processed through most of it and will attempt to answer the following questions in my next several posts.

•What was your favorite thing about Africa?

•What was the hardest thing about being there?

•Did you meet anyone that you’ll never forget?

•What did God teach you while you were there?

•What was the ministry like?

•Do you feel called to go back?

Like I said, the hardest part about the trip was those first few weeks home. But I think I’ve processed enough of the information to share now. Finally!

I grew up in a tiny little town in the Oklahoma panhandle. It was the kind of place that you had to drive 10 miles (across state line) just to get gas or groceries. We had a school, a post office, a cafe…and I think that might be it. Maybe a convenience store. We had one police officer.

I loved living out in the country. I remember snakes, and trains and tumble weeds, being barefoot and catching lots of frogs.

From there my family moved to Las Vegas, NV. I was 10. Talk about culture shock!

In my teens we moved to the suburbs of Kansas City and I’ve been here ever since. (Well mostly!)

Anyway, none of the above is my point. Just a little background to help me get to my point.

I have a love/hate relationship with tornadoes (you would too if you grew up in rural Oklahoma) and a love/love relationship with original art…so I was thrilled when I found this at my favorite thrift store last night!

art - africa and owl barn wood 006

I was initially drawn in by the owl and the barn wood. Not that I actually have a thing for either they just caught my eye. Then I flipped the thing over and saw this…

art - africa and owl barn wood 009

and this…

art - africa and owl barn wood 008

And I was in love. I paid a mere $3.99 and took it home with me.

My favorite thing to do when I find something like this is go home and research the artist online. Unfortunately, I found nothing on this artist. But I still love the piece and it’s found a home in my entryway right next to my favorite mirror.

Isn’t it funny how art affects us emotionally? Every time I look at that owl and that old torn up wood…I feel happy and free…like a little girl catching frogs and running around barefoot in rural Oklahoma. But I also feel a little anxious about tornadoes.  Hahaha, such is life.

Several months ago I looked around and realized a few things that Ieft me pretty discouraged.

  • I have a ton of workout clothes…but I wear them as pajamas because I don’t actually workout consistently.

  • I own several gardening books…but I don’t garden.

  • I own several cookbooks that represent many different ideas on healthy eating…but really I just eat the same old things I’ve always eaten.

  • I have a lot of books on home decor and home improvement…but no real dedication to any of the projects on my list.

  • And last…and this is the one that’s changed…I have tons of resources on missions and teaching kids about missions..but had never been on a mission trip.

simply in season

When I made these observations my initial thought was, “I live a totally fake life in my own head. The kind of life where I workout, eat healthy homegrown food, have a lovely home and serve people in the name of Jesus worldwide.”

Doesn’t that life sound great? It does to me!

That’s why I’ve decided that I’ve got to make some changes. I don’t want to live a fake life. Don’t get me wrong…I have a great life…but I know that there are things I want that I’m just too lazy to go get.

Going on the missions trip taught me a few things. (More on that later.) One of the things I learned is that the extra effort you put into something that seems difficult is worth it.

So this is me…putting in a little more effort and praying that a little turns into a lot more effort.  No more lazy bones! No more fake life.