Oh, The Places You’ll Go

A view of Bunia, DRC from above on a radio tower during some antenna work.

A view of Bunia, DRC from above on a radio tower during some antenna work.

Taking a boat ride on the Nile during a family vacation to Jinja, Uganda.

Taking a boat ride on the Nile during a family vacation to Jinja, Uganda.

Hiking to a pygmy camp near Epulu, DRC.

Hiking to a pygmy camp near Epulu, DRC.

Flying past the rim of a volcano near Goma, DRC on the way to Bukavu.

Flying past the rim of a volcano near Goma, DRC on the way to Bukavu.

When I was a kid I would often dream about all the cool places and things to do in the world. Things like walking through a rain forest, seeing the Indian Ocean, peering into an active volcano, observing animals on an African savanna, climbing up a tall radio tower, boating on the Nile, and seeing which way a toilet spins when flushed on the Equator. But while those all sounded like awesome things to do, they were hardly possibilities.

Then, I became an IT specialist with MAF.

In this ministry you don’t always know what is waiting around the corner. One month you might get to fly over elephants and buffalo, or past an active volcano in eastern Congo. The next month you might work on a satellite dish in the middle of the Ituri rain forest, and take a hike with pygmies while you’re there. Another time in the year you might find yourself at a conference on the Kenyan coast. You might even find yourself in Kampala, Uganda…flushing a toilet on the Equator.

I know all these things don’t really matter. After all, our main purpose as missionaries—as Christians—is to glorify God, and point people to Him. God used my love of technology and desire to serve to draw me to Congo. However, when the day-to-day challenges and struggles that come with living and working in this part of the world become overwhelming, the joy that comes from occasionally living out some of my little childhood dreams is one of the ways God keeps me here.

Now, I’ve yet to make it to all seven continents, go to space, ride in a submarine, or live in a Swiss Family Robinson-style tree house, but you can’t do everything all at once! For the moment, I’m enjoying serving God where he has me—eastern Africa—and living out a few other dreams in the process.

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