It's difficult to figure out how to navigate here, how I go to the bathroom and how I take a shower and handle trash and eat. But it's more than that.
It's feeling confronted by just how much I like my own comfort. I thought (arrogantly) that I was past that. I thought that coming here (to Africa), giving up the things I did, meant I wasn't so concerned with nice things. But there are still so many things I take for granted - a pillow, toilet paper, a trash can in the bathroom, a shower, clean water.
And yet, it's still more than that. I didn't realize how much I relied on being able to go home and forget. I want so much to go back to the Envision house where there is plenty of food that isn't rice. I want to be able to forget that fruit is such a luxury that they're so excited to get it, and that it's hit or miss when they might get breakfast. That they wash their sheets by hand every week, and their clothes every few days, because they don't have that many. That not everyone goes to church because they don't have enough money to pay for two taxibuses.
There are people who work in this space, day in and day out, for years on end. How do they do it? What do they do to keep from being overwhelmed? Because there are no easy answers and the need just keeps on coming, and I'm afraid that I'll go back home and treat myself to Starbucks and ignore it all, because I don't know what else to do.
So my big prayer for this weekend has not been for anything I expected - for patience, or long-suffering, or good sleep. Instead I pray for strength and courage - to stay and engage, with my eyes wide open, to learn what God has for me here. To choose to see it, and then to choose to remember.