Saturday, August 11, 2012

one courageous thing

I just finished Kisses from Katie by Katie Davis.  You may be familiar with her blog.  

Katie moved to Uganda when she was 19 and now at 22 is the mother to fourteen girls.  This seems like it can't be possible, but reading both her blog and the book reveal to me a woman with childlike faith who simply trusts God and obeys what He asks her to do.  The book is a simple and quick read.

I have followed her blog for a while, and her book is a little like the condensed version, some passages taken from her blog but also filling in a few of the gaps, such as how she began adopting these children and a few of the struggles she experienced like choosing to follow God back to Uganda rather than obey her parents and finish college.  

It was hard for me to read this book.

It is hard to read a book like this and not feel things like guilt, regret, or maybe just a little incredulous.

One, I feel like I have spent the past several years learning(?) or convincing (?) myself that God does not need our mighty acts or our daring adventures, but simply our heart, our humility, our gentleness . . . make it your ambition to live a quiet life.  Act justly, love mercy, walk humbly with your God.

Both Jim and I, in different places and in different ways, felt, at one time, called by God to go somewhere and do something . . . .  There is a much longer story here, but it is one thing that brought us together, and then we spent the next several years first realizing and then trying to accept that that wasn't going to happen.

I still grieve this sometimes, while certainly delighting in this life I have been given.  But it is hard to know what to do with this American life.  As much as I do not want to conform to American values, yet here we are with two vehicles and house full of toys, clothes, stuff . . .

We cannot compare ourselves to anyone.  God does not compare me to Katie Davis.  But . . . the book raises a lot of questions that I cannot answer.

Two, her story is so . . . perfect.  Even though she does in the book say over and over that she is not perfect, that she often messes up and it is only Christ working through her . . . still she has not experienced the failure that I have . . . I did not have her maturity, at nineteen, to believe God would lead me adopt children.  I would not have had her stubborness to go against my parents, or her confidence to even imagine I was capable of raising children alone.  But again, I cannot compare myself to Katie Davis . ..

I guess what I need to take away from her story is simply her childlike faith to trust God totally, to not be afraid, to be open for Christ to do in me whatever He chooses . . .

"I believe there is only one truly courageous thing we can do with our lives: to love unconditionally.  Absolutely, with all of ourselves, so much that it hurts and more."
Katie Davis,

The other book I finished recently is The Unfinished Work of Elizabeth D.  It was very much a "beach read," and contrasts highly with Kisses from Katie :-).  It was fun to talk about the book with my friend Sally and to talk about journaling and how to pass on a life.

Today is my day for Homeschool prep.  Our classroom is nearly ready, today I am working on lesson plans and trying to map out our year.  I have experienced so many moments of panic lately, looking at the calendar and realizing that summer is going to soon be over . . . and then pure relief when I remember that Sami does not have to go to school this year!  I am so thankful for school at home!


LisaM said...

I know how you feel...

Fijufic said...

You are you. Comparing yourself to others is not worthwhile.

I find you to be refreshing and absolutely making a difference...