Saturday, December 23, 2006

waiting...waiting..waiting... #4

I lived with a married couple for a while, Geoff and Jenny. I didn’t mean to live with them, it just kind of happened. I was house sitting for them while they were in Hong Kong visiting Jenny’s parents, and when they came back I just stayed there. I lived with them for a few months. It was the first time that I lived in a Christian household, I don’t know if it was different but I enjoyed having late night conversations about Jesus, Christianity, and the bible, something that would never happen at home. These days I go to home group at Geoff and Jenny’s, sporadically, but I do go. I like being the last to leave, having those late night conversations again; usually they are with Geoff. I like talking to Jenny too, she’s a stay at home mum at the moment and sometimes I will give her a call during the day if I find myself drifting towards Dr Phil and all the other glories of day time television.

When she is not a stay at home mum Jenny is a nurse. She wants to go to Africa to be a nurse there. It is a dream and a passion that she has. Geoff is a carpenter, so really they are pretty well needed in developing countries. I want to go to Africa too, but my academic background in Anthropology isn’t as needed as the particle skills of my friends. I always look on the Internet to see if there is some opportunity, somewhere, for me to apply my anthropology in Africa. But most of the time I just see opportunities for nurses and carpenters. I get annoyed at this, and at Jenny because she has this God given passion and the ability to see it through, yet she won’t go.

Jenny tells me that she is waiting. I asked her if she was waiting for her 11 month old boy Theo to get older, and she said that she grew up in the jungles of South America so taking her child(ren) to Africa wasn’t an issue for her. She told me instead that it if was to pack up her family and go to Africa today it would be on her own accord. What is more, she said that this would reflect a fleshly desire; I was bewildered. How can (living out) a desire to serve those people most in need be anything else but of and from God? Jenny told me that she will go to Africa, but when she goes it will be in Gods time, not her own.

I think I might understand Jenny now, and something more of the importance of waiting. By waiting she is giving her passions over to God, even if Jesus endowed these pasions in her in the first place they still belong and are best used by him, right? Jenny’s desire to go to Africa and her talents belongs to God, by waiting she is acknowledging this, what is more she trusts that God will use her. Jenny is waiting for Jesus to take her to Africa, and she is allowing God to prepare her for this.

I tend to see waiting and action as different things. For me Jenny’s not being in Africa right now was inaction. I don’t think that God necessarily agrees with me, I think that God may view Jenny’s waiting as action. Maybe waiting can be a form of action, maybe Jesus calls us to wait just has he calls us to act, and maybe the two things can’t and shouldn’t be separated…