Previous Challenge Entry (Level 1 – Beginner)
Topic: Africa (03/05/09)
TITLE: Love Is
By Charlie Comerford
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It’s been 2 weeks now since I arrived in ‘Sunny Mozambique’ (understatement of the century) and if I’m being honest, right now I just want to pack up my stuff and go home. The thought of staying for another 5 and a half months is… well it’s unthinkable! The temperature is, on average, about 40’C everyday - and I’m part Irish so my skin is burning like heck! And then there is the bugs... I can’t remember the last time I was stung by a bee back home - I think maybe I was five... Whatever, it was a long time ago, and yet since coming here I’ve been stung four times by bees!
Perhaps my pale skin to an African bee is like a red flag to a bull and, by nature, they automatically turn into demented kamikazes at the sight of my flesh. Or maybe Satan has demon-possessed every bee in Africa so that they attack me on sight. Who knows!?
- However, this is not even the worst of it!
The most unpleasant thing right now, by a mile, is the horrific, the terrifying, the fear-inspiring; drop toilet. I will spare you your innocence, since you, my dearest diary, are still pure; but know that this particular invention is, without a doubt, the most curs’ed creation on God’s green earth. Yet sadly for most people here it’s all they have, and so I’ve been forced to make this disgusting enemy of nature into my best friend. Otherwise - if I may be so frank - where would I go when I need to go!?
Ok, I’m going down a negative road here. Let’s back up a bit and take a look at what God’s done for me.
This past year God has seriously worked his bright-white-robes off for me. Mozambique - the area of Africa which I’m currently settling in, is a primarily Portuguese speaking country (along with a variety of other rural dialects: I.e. Chewa, Shona and Nyungue to name a few). And God, being the awesome God that He is, arranged it so that I found a convenient - and cheap - Portuguese Beginners evening course which was also wonderfully easy to get to. Therefore now, I’m here and am able to (sort of) converse with the locals! So praise God!
Also, even before this happened - I’m talking years back - God put mission on my heart and confirmed it through several prophesies in people who had never met each other before. And sometimes when I felt lost, he would give me a little sign, maybe a song on my ipod or a word from a friend, to let me know that I should have faith in Him.
So listen to yourself whinging about such insignificant problems! For the past 4 years haven’t you been begging to God: ‘Please, send me now!’ Yet here you are, wanting to go home. And why? Because it’s a bit hot? Because the bugs are biting? Because your best friend is a toilet?
Get a grip of yourself man! Remember, God brought you here for a reason and now you need to toughen up and stick it out! (I have no idea whether I’ve just referred to myself in the 2nd, 3rd or 4th person ~ ) Don’t doubt the Lord. He makes the blind see and the deaf hear, He makes the lame walk and the mute speak, and He is, in fact, the salvation of all mankind. So have faith in Him! Persevere through these petty struggles and surely in the end your faith will be 100 times stronger than it ever was before!
- Quite the pep talk. Lets see now if I have the will to do it. Africa is a completely different world to the one I’m used to and right now I don’t fully understand it. But I’m sure with time I’ll learn, since it was God who, out of love, brought me to this place. So I‘m confident that if I do my part then He will do great things through me.
…Ah! My ipod (a personal and necessary luxury) has just flickered onto a song… I‘ve never really thought much about the lyrics of the chorus, until now… check it out:
The sweetest feeling,
That I know.
The only thing that,
Will let you go… where you want to go.
Ah God, you’ve done it again.
Song: Love Is
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