Monday, April 19, 2010

The Slow Boat

We are getting close! After our last newsletter, four supporters INCREASED their giving, and four new donors have made pledges. David and I continue to meet with families and churches to share about our call to France. We are hovering right at 88-90% of our needed monthly support, which means that we could be purchasing one-way tickets to France before the end of the month. CRAZY! FUN! SCARY! EXCITING! I'd feel an entire spectrum of emotions if I could find the time to feel them. Unfortunately, life does not slow down just because a momentous move now looms in our not-so-distant future.

In the midst of this final phase of fundraising, we have spent hours at urgent care with each of our boys; we have led worship as a family at the women's Bible study at our church; Chandler is regularly rehearsing for his role of Long John Silver in his school's production of Treasure Island; Graham is scheduling weekly band practices; the lawn is growing at record rates; the garden is begging to be planted; David is figuring out if we can rent our house instead of sell it, and what it would take for that to happen; I am writing grants, teaching Bible Study, and lunching with friends as often as possible; we are all still trying to fit in regular work-outs; three of us need routine doctor's appointments but none of us can find a moment to call to schedule them. If laundry gets done it is an anomaly, if the dog gets walked it is a wonder, our carpets have completely forgotten what a vacuum-cleaner is, and sitting down to a family dinner requires an act of God. Sadly, I bet you all can relate!

I keep telling myself that it is "just a season." And since we do not live in this frenzied state very often, I am pretty sure that I am not lying to myself. Still. I need to breathe. I need to process. I need to ponder. Which brings me to the boat....

Last summer in our Cultural Integration Training school, we learned about some of the "modern conveniences" that actually handicap missionaries. One crippling convenience is the efficiency of travel. Years ago when missionaries would leave for the field, they would take a boat. On that boat they would have time to process the enormous move they we making: Time to grieve what they were leaving behind and time to anticipate the journey ahead. Today, most missionaries hop on a plane, and 20 hours later hit the ground running, not having a moment to catch their breath, much less sort out their emotions. We were encouraged, if it is possible, to take a boat to the field, like they did in the olden days. To weep. To anticipate. To reflect. To savor.

So, over the weekend, I began to price transatlantic cruise fares. They are not much more than one-way airline tickets. I think this might be our preferred mode of transportation. The slow boat. Yes. While typically it is speed that impresses me most, it seems like this is one of those times when slower just might be better.

1 comment:

  1. I LOVE this idea! I think it will be a pefect transition to your new home and life.