I’ve been home from Ethiopia less than 48 hours and trying to figure out what life looks like after a ‘life changing’ trip.
The trip really can only be described as life changing.
The question now is ‘how is my life really going to change’?
I’m not really sure what the answer is at this point.
Right now, I cannot get the word ‘abundance’ out of my head.
This trip has made me more aware of the excess that is here in America.
I’m struck by the fact that the 4 shirts and 2 pair of pants that I left in Ethiopia for young girls from the Compassion project is more clothing than most of those girls have in their entire wardrobe.
While folding the clothes we brought on our trip, I couldn’t help but think that the contents of our one suitcase was more clothing than most Ethiopian families own. Yet, we still have a closet of clothes – we packed maybe 20% of our clothing for the trip.
Seeing the 2 cloth soccer balls we brought home for our boys lying on the floor amidst all the others toys scattered around makes me think back to our home visit with the 6-year-old boy, Sintayehu, that we sponsor. He showed us the ball he made out of an old sock with his mama’s help. That homemade ball and 6 bottle caps were his only toys.
The two books I ordered for Paxton’s pre-school that arrived while I was gone seem excessive since most of the children I interacted with don’t even own one picture book.
While I’m not solely focusing on material things, the abundance of our possessions stands out to me as I’m readjusting to life here.
I can’t help but laugh at the fact we say we live minimally in a small home. Your perspective of 1,300 square feet changes when you’ve been in a home that’s about the size of a king size bed and is home to 5 people.
As I’m processing my emotions, I can’t help but think that Americans really are the ones who lack. The Ethiopian Christians we met have so much faith, so much passion for Jesus, love for their neighbors, love for fellow believers and give generously from what little they have. Their abundance is found not in material possessions but in Jesus.
I’ve been inspired, challenged and forever changed to live more simply so we can give even more generously. I want my abundance to change – from material abundance to abundance in Jesus.
I hope to share more about our trip, the children we sponsor and their families and the ways my life has been changed in the coming weeks as I process the emotions of my trip.
*We traveled with Compassion International and saw first hand that lives really are being changed. Sponsoring a child is just $38 dollars a month. Your money provides education, food for families and health care. Your letters inspire children to dream, make them feel loved and give them hope.*