I’ve thoroughly enjoyed having Kathy, Matt and Trevor on this trip. It has been wonderful on so many levels, including hearing their voices come through on the blog. It has been special for me to have more time with people, to rest at night, and just know you all are hearing stories of our ministry here from people who care as much as me about it going forward.
We are off to the USA now, just waiting in South Africa for our flight. Trevor has left for DC. Kathy, Matt and I head to Newark, via Munich Germany for a short layover. Pray for our safety and re-entry.
Thanks for following along. Look for more stories and pictures this week and next. Pray on, dear loved ones. I am thankful for you and your love for us.
-Ryan for the team
One of the realities that hit our team hard – and has hit me hard over and over since first coming here – is the anxiety in waiting. We want to see soooo much while we are here. There is an urgency in which people move when they first come here. Any distraction or delay can drive us crazy. Americans, including Christian Americans, are not very patient. We have our task list and anything that interferes with our efficiency is cause for alarm. But delays are commonplace here and my 3 traveling friends wore their frustrations a couple days ago, with good reason.
2 tires had to be changed, one after just fixing the other. Unexpected errands, long lines, nonfunctioning internet, unexpected favors for friends… one thing after another.
But often our delays also create delays for people waiting for us to arrive. When we get there people are just so excited we have come, ignoring our 2-3 hour delay from our expected arrival time. How do the people here demonstrate soooo much patience in waiting? Where is their urgency? Both are questions that dash through our minds with each new setback.
The people here tell me there is peace in waiting. They wait on the Lord in all facets of life, including when I will come see them. They know God will provide, so there is no sense is being anxious.
As I leave Africa for the 2nd time in 4 months, and likely my last trip of 2012 for a host of reasons, I leave with a great deal of peace. I met so many children waiting to be helped, children without parents on the verge of being lost, but yet I am at peace. Women who have left lives of prostitution, but still don’t have an income to care for the 3 children orphaned in their homes. Yet I am at peace. A 25 year old man caring for 3 distant nephews – suddenly here with him. Yet I am at peace.
I met with pastors who are waiting for Forgotten Voices to support their church run orphan care projects. Children almost done with school, hoping to go to University to pursue their dreams. They are waiting. I am too, patiently.
We still have an urgent need for financial support and I am about to take a 6 week, Board mandated sabbatical. Yet I am at peace.
Why am I at peace? Because the Lord calls us to care for widows and orphans. My last 8 years of been spent exhaustively pouring myself into the building of Forgotten Voices. Increasingly, I am seeing that, while God wants us to give our best & full effort, He is God and sees these needs. I am confident that as people like you pray and trust in God with your finances and hearts, the Lord will provide through you and others. He will provide.
I’m at peace because I know the end of the story. I know that God sees this and I know God wins. I know that joy comes when we trust & rest in Him, no matter the pain & loss that envelopes our lives.
This post started out about being impatient when we blow tires, but as I wrote I came to see that the lesson is more about waiting on the Lord in all things – waiting in peace, not in anxiety. God will provide for the children I met and the children I love. Because my love for them comes from God. His love is more than enough.
Note from Ryan Keith, Forgotten Voices
Tags: #FVAfrica, children, forgotten voices, learning, Travels in Africa, waiting on the Lord, zimbabwe
Filed under: General Blog, Travel Blog