I don't need God

This title may come as a shock to you. Keep reading.

I woke up every single morning knowing that I don't have the strength to make it through the day. My alarm went off at 5am and I had to ask the Lord for determination just to get out of bed. I just knew, being a mother to eighteen precious children that the day wouldn't be "normal." I needed that strength.

Once getting out of bed and helping get the girls up, wrapping plastic bags around their heads so their braids don't get wet. Giving them my soap because they always seem to run out. Helping the girls get ready for school and making sure they brushed their teeth, uniform on, shoes polished. Let me remind you that all this is happening before 7am.

Breakfast is always chaos and the children would grab their lunches (thankfully prepared the night before) and run out the door to school. The whole morning I would constantly be praying, asking the Lord for wisdom and clinging to His faithful promises.

Every morning would bring an unexpected twist. Whether the host mom would shout at the children, if the tea had enough sugar in it, which child would cry in the morning because some other other child stole something. The list continues. On some mornings, a child would be so upset as thoughts of not having any money, missing their parents or lack of parents would arise before the sun.

I needed God. I never knew if there would be enough food for the kids or me to eat. I would pray with such conviction for carrots in the fridge or some sort of vegetable. It rarely happened.

Even before 8am hit, without Jesus living in me I would have been exhausted. It's a lot to deal with and a lot of unknowns. It requires faith. It requires trust in a God that I can't visibly see but that I know and can feel throughout each moment of every day.

I could continue typing about the hundreds of times a day I would ask for His vision, strength, energy, unending love, patience, justice etc. Talking to God and relying on His strength became the normal because I knew I was nothing without Him but I always knew I needed Him. I knew 100% that what was required of me couldn't ever be done by my own strength. I needed something more.

Coming back to North America I've already stopped "needing God." I woke up this morning knowing that their would be food on the table- food I liked that wouldn't be starch that sat in my stomach making me fat and constipated all at the same time. I knew that there was someone I could call if needed. I knew that people had my day perfectly planned out (i'm at re - entry in PA) and I just had to get up and follow the schedule. I went to bed without the fear of rats and mice running around and keeping me up late into the night and a peace that I wasn't going to get robbed. Trying to comprehend not living in fear is a totally new concept that I forgot even existed. It's amazing how much people trust people here when it comes to stealing and being robbed. 

These past few days I've stopped praying for safety: North America is already safe - I don't need a God to keep me safe anymore. I've stopped praying for vegetables and relying on daily miracles to feed me and my children. I don't have eighteen children to look after, to hold them when they cry or discipline them when I catch them in my room "looking at all my things." 

I've realized this is going to be one of my major challenges. I still need God in North America. I desperately need Him every second of the day, it's just harder to see. It's harder to have visible faith. It's difficult to remember that when I die I can't take anything with me. I leave with just my soul: not a single earthly possession.

I have been thinking a lot about this "needing God" topic recently and it's almost easier to be a Christian living in poverty. The people I worked and lived with needed God. They needed to know that their life had a purpose, that there was someone out there who loved them so much that He would die for them. They were desperate for that truth and as I sat with locals or snuggled my children and told them these truths they accepted with such personal conviction. I reflect and wonder how that would play out in Canada. I think the first challenge for people in North America is allowing them to see that they need God, even though they have every 'worldly' thing. God is everywhere. Ephesians 4:6 says "one God and Father of all, who is over all, through all and in all." & God has called each one of us to live in life in complete sacrifice to Him, allowing Him to take care of our every need, rather than consuming and storing up everything.

I've fallen into the North American "i don't need God" lifestyle for a few days. I was so upset with myself but thrilled that God continues to pour grace and mercy over my life and picks me back up again.  I'm going to try and figure out how to live with faith like I did in Africa in North America. I want it to be obvious despite all the tangible stuff I have that I can't get through the day without my Jesus. Africa taught me a new faith - I want that faith to play out in Canada. 

Keep me accountable?

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