Friday, September 10, 2010

Reflections on a mission.

As I settle back into my life of reliable electricity and water on demand, I reflect back on the 15,000 mile trip that represented my 6th international mission and fifth to the “dark continent” of Africa.
Having responded in the past to these international callings, I count it a privilege to have served on His missions of the Pollock family and serve with the late Ted Pollock.  I must say that I saw many of Ted’s finer qualities in Adam as he took (and continues) the project management role for this mission. I’m sure Ted has been looking down on this mission with immense pride in his grandson as well as the rest of the family.
I first read about this mission appeal in August 2008 when traveling to the last mission in Mozambique. I was hooked at once. I did all I could to help nurture the mission along. As many of you know, for the past year and a half, I’ve been unemployed. That didn’t stop me from supporting the mission here at home. In fact, it made it easier. I knew all along that my best case scenario would be finding a job as the mission approached and not having any vacation time to be able to attend. I placed my faith in God and realized He just needed me in the planning part of this mission. So I thought.
I took part on a team that defied the odds to pull off this mission. After all, it would cost 3-4 times our usual project and require three times the labor. The scale of the work would also be 3-400% larger than anything undertaken in the past and we had no contacts in Kenya to organize the ground logistics. Forget that we were warned that it “would be the rainy season” when such an undertaking should not be attempted. For every road block the mission faced God clearly broke through and clearly demonstrated the need for this mission (except for, perhaps, a few of those muddy roads – God does have a sense of humor…). 
I was confused, however, as to why I couldn’t attend and be on one of the four teams. I certainly had the time being unemployed. But, I needed to remain at home for job interviews and further job hunting. Then, as the teams were completing for the summer and work remained, I watched as airfare dropped to Kenya. A last interview was positive but the employer would be delaying decisions for months. That was when I clearly saw my opportunity to go and serve. With eight days of planning I took my shots and left to be an add on team to help complete the floor portion of the construction.
As you have read, that went well and completed as needed. I was also there to assist after the thugs tore down the existing orphanage and the orphans needed to move in before the buildings were completed. Perhaps, from the beginning, this was all in God’s plan of some two years ago. I was glad to be there in the orphan’s hour of need.
Funny thing happened on my arrival home this past Monday night, I had a message on my phone telling me that the company I interview for was going to sign a contract to hire me for a project. I’ll start in the next week. Seems God needed to delay the contract to get His Kenya work done first. So, 90 job applications in one and a half years only led to one in person interview. And that is all it took. Oh, by the way, I never applied for this job. This one found me. Go figure!
God bless this mission,
~~~Brother Jim (as I’m known by my fellow Kenyan workers)

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