There have been things that I have wanted to change about life in Curahuasi. Some things about work are hard and some things about the culture are difficult. Doing missions is not easy, and living cross culturally can be tough. But the fact is that I cannot change everything. Much is out of my control.
So I have challenged myself to check my attitude. I tell my kids that only they have control over their attitude. No one else can control it for them, and their attitude affects everyone around then. So I took my own words to heart and it has been helpful. Allison was reminding me about God telling Paul to quit kicking against the goads, and frankly there is a little bit of freedom in knowing that this is the way it is and there is no changing it. When I thought I could change things, I guess the fact that it wasn’t changing frustrated me more. Now that I know I cannot, I am free to do the best I can within the system I am in. My attitude is better. I don’t think anyone would have said I had a bad attitude before . . . it was an internal problem. But the internal battle has improved if not been won completely as I have quit kicking against the goads and tried to move forward accepting the direction I am going.
It is good to remember that in all things God is in control. He directs our lives through the circumstances in which we find ourselves. So we should embrace our struggles, looking to how God is guiding and working in our lives through them, and we should quit fighting against the directions he takes us. It is when we try and take control that frustration sets in, but a life of faith, trusting in God’s leading, sets us free.