As most know we are wondering what lays ahead in our future. We originally committed to three years but with a view to five years in our mission journey in Albania but now we are in year 4 with the fifth approaching quickly there is no escape from the question what next?
We of course continue to ask God, we need to ask our supporters as without financial support this door is definitely shut but we also have such a mixture of fear and questions that we so want for these not to cloud our decisions.
Neil had a dream to serve in Albania since he was 13 and someone asked us, what happens when you finish do you get a new dream, we looked at each other, shrugged our shoulders but both silently said “I hope so!” We have met many inspirational missionaries who have long term visions for their countries but also some who we can see clearly stay because it becomes the easier option.
We have always been clear we are just very normal people, not super Chrisitians or with some special five star staff badge. We are us. Shouting, moaning, grumpy, laying, happy, need to pray more, read the bible more, go to church more, us.
But now that us does have a job title which is possibly the most fantastic…. Missionaries. It means we are clearly defined to be trusting God, living by faith but what we like the most maybe, doing our thing with only the big man to answer to. We only do what we did in our own country, we know loads of people who are serving God more radically in our old community but we get the good job title that makes people think we are somehow more arming, holy, incredible. We are not.
But what next? To go back to slogging away without the cool title. Living without the amazing summer weather and proximity to the beach. Taking the kids away from the life they know, the friends they love and the culture which is more theirs than their nationality.
We don’t have another calling. We don’t have a burning dream. We see the kids at the gate of Burime, the neighbours who need a Saviour, the openness to finding out about God and see we could stay here forever and still there be a need. But we are not the solution, we are just reflections for now, we are here in this season.
So with all these rumblings you see the questions that are before us each day. What next? Where next? How long and how? How I wish I had a map to follow.
And then, within four days we have been told that people want to support what we are doing financially. We have a team and five individuals wanting to come to be a part of what we are doing. Just the encouragement in the midst of questions that other people see not the tag of missionaries but the touch of God and what is happening here. I don’t know the answers (yet!) but I am so very grateful for the people who believe in this journey, have and still walk with us and will be beside us no matter what our job title. For the times people show us a bit more of the map, the journey. Of course, a few answers would be nice!