So I (Kristine) was changing the channels on the tv the other day and saw this travel show on the public broadcasting network. It was mostly over (which saddened me) and had this man going into villages getting to know the locals and learning about them. I wasn't sure at this where this country was, but I was overhearing them speak a language that I mostly recognized as Spanish with some french sounding words mixed in. I checked the channel guide and it said the man was in Mozambique, so I watched on.
My brain is a little cloudy right now due to being nine months pregnant, but I remember him going into villages and learning about what food they typically eat. I think he mentioned that there weren't many roads here and I saw airplanes taking off and landing in the show. Towards the end, the part I remember the clearest was when he went into a local school. The teacher was teaching in this familiar language and the kids were listening. They sang the tv show guy a song in the language and his guide sang it too. It was very sweet to see those kids singing, made me want to be there! The show soon ended and I decided to check to see what the language was.
I checked the language and it was Portugese! My dream language pretty much because I LOVE how it sounds and have always wanted to learn it. I listen to Joao Gilberto's (He's from Brazil) bossa nova music frequently and the language is beautiful even though I don't understand it. When I was at WWU taking a Jazz class a professor who knew this man personally and played with him, translated one of the songs...it really was beautiful. Who knew there was an African country that spoke Portugese? I didn't!
MAF in Mozambique?
I decided to check to see if MAF had an operational base in that country, just to see if they were there. To my surprise, they are in fact in Mozambique! Here's the link: http://www.maf.org/mozambique I looked at it and they've been there for a little while and have a few families stationed there. If you'd like, you can go to their website and check out the families and also see their personal newsletters. I do this all the time to see what's going on in-country that isn't typically mentioned in the overview on the website. Plus it helps me connect with the people in that country more. Turns out they work with many New Tribes Mission missionaries and even Wycliffe missionaries there among the other groups.
Openings in Mozambique?
I decided to take my search a little further to see if Mozambique had any openings. To my surprise, they have a Pilot/IT opening right now. That's exactly what Eric's going for. What a shock really. Was this coincidence that I happened to go to that channel on that day... I think not. I think God was allowing me to see the other opportunities there are for ministry in other countries and encouraging me to encourage us to continue to pray and seek where God would have us in ministry. Being open to an African country was never something I had considered. However the prospect of learning and speaking and teaching in Portugese is very tempting to me. I showed Eric what I had found and he seemed really interested too. Would I survive the climate though? I don't know...but it's something to think about!
Excited for potential ministry with MAF
What's most exciting about this is not learning that Mozambique has Portugese as one of their languages, but it was the spark that ignited in me when I was looking again at the tv show and realizing just how much I'd love living as a missionary in another country. I watched MAF's AOTW Haiti episode and just continued to fall in love with the ministry. It's so easy to become so set in your ways, to think, "Oh, I am going to have a baby soon. We could just live in the US with our house, work our jobs and help at church and not worry about this mission stuff".
Life often times gets in the way of calling. Somehow I don't feel satisfied with the status quo. I don't feel like staying in the US long-term is what Eric and I are called to do. The more I read and watch about MAF the more I can really see Eric and I helping out there and making a difference in the world. Our children will get a rich experience no one can take from them and learn a different set of values than they would if we just lived our mundane lives. I could see the benefits of living a life for Christ that are more rewarding than possessions. In all the trips I've taken, I feel more at home in other countries often times than I do my own. I love learning about other people's ways of life. Eric and I often watch survival shows and travel shows with great intrigue because it fascinates us. We'd love to instill that same fascination and love for other people in our children too.
We'll see what the next year has in store for us. God can change things in an instant. For right now, we are encouraged to keep pressing on towards ministry with MAF until God changes our direction elsewhere.