It’s tempting as a believer, and as a missionary candidate, to give updates and prayer requests on slices of the past—you know, those hindsight, 20/20 vision reports where you can say, “I was struggling with such and such, but I learned ______” or, “I really needed _____, but God was faithful to provide….” It’s easier that way, to only share a struggle once I’ve figured out what I’m supposed to learn, or to share a request or doubt once God has already provided. It’s easy, too, to look at the future, and tell you that I’m trusting God and looking forward to what’s next in this exciting journey of becoming a missionary.
Unfortunately, though, I live in the present, where lessons are still being learned, trials don’t make sense, needs haven’t been supplied, and questions still don’t have answers. It’s messy sometimes, to live life, to walk by faith, to learn to “trust God” for the billionth time. I wish I could paint you a rosy picture of what it’s like to follow Christ. But the present, with all its doubts, fears, and needs, is where I live, so that is what I endeavor to share with you.
There are blog posts about life at MTC that are still percolating in my brain, but right now, let me give you a quick glimpse of my post-surgery life.
As many of you know, I did have arthroscopic surgery on my left knee this past Tuesday (9/11). The surgery itself went well; the surgeon said it was good that I got the surgery done, or my knee would never have healed. Life after surgery, (affectionately known as “recovery”), is a completely different story. The pain medication I had caused incredible nausea, making it hard to eat or sit up for longer than 10 minutes at a time. So, after 24 hrs, I stopped taking it. The two days following my surgery were crazy busy with all kinds of errands, visits, and tasks that all had to be accomplished in the few short days I was in KC. Friday morning, shortly after getting my stitches and dressing removed, I hit the road and drove back down to the Missionary Training Center (MTC). Some of my family followed me to make sure I made it okay.
Now, I’m back in training, and the fun is just beginning. I guess the best way to describe it is in a few snapshots: a pile of homework threatening to bury me, a walking stick and crutches to make getting around this hilly campus “easier”, the struggle to walk to the shower and try to get clean with a swollen knee, listening to 14+ hrs of lectures to catch up on the classes I missed, learning how to balance on one leg while washing dishes or cooking lunch, icing my knee almost non-stop to keep the swelling (and, consequently, the pain) down to a minimum, hanging out with other missionary candidates and playing Pit…the list goes on and on. I’m so glad to be back, but it’s hard to jump back in with both feet when you only have one leg fully functioning. I need strength and perseverance just to keep going in daily life. I’m four weeks into training, and the race is getting rough.
So pray for me, if you would. There’s nothing I need more.