It’s interesting the way one day flows into the next. We put limits on them and say “at midnight we shall start to call this a new day.” We dissect the day even further into hours, minutes and seconds. At least, that’s what we do in our North American culture.
In Africa, the sun rises at about 6 a.m. and sets 12 hours later. I knew this fact well in advance of arriving here in September but didn’t think it would significantly affect our lives. Because of this constant, the seasons also don’t change too much. What this does is create an environment in which is it hard to tell one day from the next, or one month from the next, or even one year from the next. And so time just keeps flowing on and on. Not much preparation is required for “winter,” not much attention is put toward creatures coming to life again in “spring,” and not much is recorded in terms of one “summer’s” heat to the next.
Culture here seems to have frozen. Because of the monotonous way time unfolds, it remains, in many ways, very similar to biblical times. The biblical principal of needing to care for the poor, for orphans and widows, is very visible. Oral stories and traditions are extremely valuable. Transportation and traveling is quite difficult.
There have been many Bible passages that have come to mind as we explore this country. I can almost picture Jesus walking down a dirt path and seeing a blind man sitting beside it, begging passersby for money or food. People crying out for justice and truth are everywhere. Then I think of Jesus saying “blessed are those…”
I have no doubt in my mind that God has been preparing Jocelyn and me to live here since the day He brought us into this world––weaving the strands of time together so that we learned the lessons we needed and met the people who’d help us along. His majestic symphony has been played out as we chased “our” dreams––of flying, photography, psychology, and others––all to be used for His glory instead of our personal gain.
We see much opportunity here. This place is rich with beautiful people, many of whom love God and serve Him with more faith than I have at times. Abundant in resources and overflowing with gorgeous landscapes, this jungle land shows off the greatness bestowed it by the Lord.
As we follow the way God has put before us, we are eager to serve Him with Mission Aviation Fellowship here in Kinshasa, DRC. It’s almost like being royalty if you belong with MAF, whose history here stretches far and wide. We are proud to be a part of the good reputation MAF has and we hope to continue improving it.
Though it may seem like times don’t change and weather stays the same, we know that God’s plan is being worked out in this land and its people; and we are excited to discover what’s around the next corner!