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Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Background anxiety

I've been thinking a good bit about anxiety lately:  "be anxious for nothing" used to seem like a reasonable Bible verse, but I admit it is becoming more challenging.  I have an anxious child, who is struggling at night as he tries to fall asleep.  Sometimes it is the hard realities of the world, that even though HE has two parents almost none of his friends do.  Sometimes it is just the uncertainty of what will happen in his classes tomorrow, whether he's done the work or whether a surprise exam will come up.  Sometimes it is just the sadness of family being apart, and then an anxiety that the sadness will increase and overwhelm.  I think it is easier to believe for the BIG concrete things as they happen, but it is the background-noise of life that we notice in the quiet and dark of our beds, that makes us anxious.  

In the last few days alone, nothing particularly life-shattering has happened (to me I mean, I know other lives are shattered by the minute).  But there in the background are the irregular, unpredictable pings of smaller worries.  Another mild earthquake shaking the bed, waking us at 5:25 am one morning, then a single pre-dawn silence-cracking gunshot at the same time the next day, in both cases we are quite safe but lie awake wondering if it is the prelude to real disaster.  My workers killed a small but poisonous snake in our living room this weekend.  The BBC opened their program yesterday with extensive coverage of renewed fighting in Congo.  UPDF are stationed on the mission once again.  We have technology woes as visitors and team try to connect to their email, our bull is down with a serious leg infection which will be a huge loss of 450 kg of meat if he dies, then there are the daily struggle to plow through the ward full of patients when labs get lost or staff disappear to care for sick relatives or records are unavailable or the list goes on and on.  The ever-present potetial of serious team sickness, of interruption in the water supply line, of cultural misunderstanding, of offending our friends.  

I thought I was a person with a good amount of faith.  But I'm not.  By grace, we need faith just as we need everything else.  This weekend we move into the interview process for a new Head Teacher.  The word on the street is that staff are anxious, too.  Scott keeps reminding us that one of the most-repeated communications from God is "FEAR NOT".  Please pray for us.

1 comment:

Heather Pike Agnello said...

Isn't it when there are no life-shattering things to make lots of noise that the smaller "pings" (although, from this side of the pond, they seem like plenty) suddenly can be heard so clearly??? Praying for each of you to hear God's voice strongly and clearly in the quiet and dark of your beds each night. Love you all so much.