The thoughts of a woman trying to live simply yet abundantly, contentedly yet expectantly, wisely yet adventurously... all for His glory.

7.28.2010

I never dreamed of Africa

Over dinner with a friend this past week, I marveled at the journey that God has been leading me on over the last several years in particular. I never knew that following Him would be such an adventure, and I will be the first to remind anyone who asks that I certainly don’t deserve this kind of joy. 
I never dreamed of Africa. I dreamed of traveling to Thailand with its rice paddies and elephants, and of India's tigers and kaleidoscope of colorful saris. 
I never dreamed of being a nurse. Earlier dreams included bus driver, flight attendant, and dentist. In college I thought I would earn a biochemistry degree then launch into discovering cures for various diseases. After realizing biochem wasn't for me, I then proceeded to dream about becoming a doctor, a dietician, a physician's assistant... and finally, finally nursing.
Through all my 27 years I have struggled to place God at the center of my life. I’m no model Christian, not by a long shot. Yet somehow I always return to the fact that I am my Beloved’s and He is mine. Each time I wander away He comes to bring me back, sometimes gently whispering and sometimes using the megaphone known as Pain (my thanks to CS Lewis for a great metaphor). 
I have no idea why He has chosen to be so gracious to me. Call me naive, call me rosy-eyed, call me idealistic, but I can’t help but think how stunning the grand adventure of life is with God! Most days are not page-turners, of course. There are chapters I wish I could have skipped. And I am holding my breath for some plot developments (romantic tension, anyone?). But I wouldn’t trade my journey for anything. God has written stories for each of us, and only as we walk through our own pages--and not those of others--are we truly content and truly alive.
I never dreamed of Africa or of nursing, yet tomorrow I fly to Niger to work as a nurse for two weeks at an up-and-coming fistula hospital in Danja. I have fallen in love with VVF ladies and with the transformation that happens in a woman when hope blossoms anew. I’ve fallen in love with the least and the lost. My heart beats for the outcast, the unloved, the lonely. 
I never dreamed of Africa. And I certainly never dreamed that God had dreams ever so much grander, more satisfying, more everything than mine.   
   

(Photo from Worldwide Fistula Fund)

7 comments:

Chinwe said...

Delightful!

BusyBees42 said...

Thanks so much for posting this, Lefty! I so appreciate the honesty as well as hearing about the joy you have!!! Hurray! God is so good! Love you.

Sarah said...

Wow. This post brought me tears and giggles at the same time. Do you mind if I read it in the sermon I'm giving next week? I just love reading about your adventures, what a journey it has been! Love you, Roo! Safe and happy travels in Niger. I'm praying for you!

Abigail Jasmine said...

I've finally gotten the chance to catch up on your blog reading..and wow..what a journey of giving/learning/lessons in love you are on! So wonderful to be following you along in it..

God is so great!

So glad to hear you magnify His name!

Prayers n' love

Sarah Blanshan said...

Isn't it grand when God surprises us? I'm so glad for the experiences you've had.

tea said...

This is wonderful, Lindsay! God is so good to us! What a wonderful journey he has, and is, taking you on! :)

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing this Lindsay,
Ine